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Campaign Contributions from Credit Card Companies? Priceless

Noah_Bodie
Senior Contributor

Campaign Contributions from Credit Card Companies? Priceless

Just a few snippets from the entire article, which I commend to you.

 

http://www.motherjones.com/washington_dispatch/2007/07/campaign_contributions_credit_card_companies....

...

As it stands, approximately 40 percent of American households spend more than they make each year, and the average household debt to credit cards is about $10,000. According to the Federal Reserve, consumer credit card debt in the United States totals $880 billion; this figure, adjusted to current dollars, has increased a hundred-fold in the last 40 years. These numbers, huge by any standard, represent a growing factor in the nation's questionable economic future.

 

Those carrying credit card debt are not limited to self-indulgent spenders: "The Plastic Safety Net," a 2005 survey of low and middle income households conducted by Demos and the Center for Responsible Lending, found that declines in public and private benefit programs—health coverage, pensions, and unemployment insurance among them—have contributed to the growth in credit card debt. For example, 29 percent of households surveyed reported that medical expenses made up a portion of their current balances.

...

"The U.S. lived with usury laws from colonial days through the early 1980s, when a loophole in a federal banking law effectively abolished them. The problem is not whether a practical federal usury limit could be established, particularly if the rate were pegged to inflation. The problem with instituting a new usury law is politics. The credit industry hires a lot more lobbyists than the consumer advocacy groups, and the creditors have been almost uniformly opposed to any usury laws."

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