Welcome to Potterville

November 29th, 2010

I keep on hearing how mad we are at Wall Street.  I hear this roughly as frequently as I get envelopes from Bank of America and Chase Bank and Citigroup telling me how much better my life could be if only I were to borrow bunches of money from them.  It is somewhat puzzling to me, to hear about how tight credit remains for small businesses, when these financial titans are eagerly willing to take a flyer on an underpaid public servant in the deficit-raddled State of Vermont.  Hardly a day goes by that they don’t tell me so.  The latest gambit is to send me envelopes full of checks that I can use almost instantly to buy things I can’t presently afford.  Apparently we’re not mad enough so that our collective disdain for such mass-marketing efforts makes them fail to be lucrative enough to repeat and repeat and repeat.

“Too big to fail is too big to exist,” said Senator Bernie Sanders of these giants.  He was right, of course, but Congress and the President failed to heed his call to break the big banks up.  I keep on hearing how mad we are at Congress for, among other things, not doing so, but apparently we’re not mad enough to overcome whatever reasons the financiers used to convince our politicos to allow them to continue to hold the whole world hostage to their financial games.   The funny thing is, though, that we are held hostage only so long as we want to be.  It’s something we can walk away from.

Being a do-it-yourselfer, I think, we don’t need Congress to cut these guys down to size.  Why give them your money?  Why do business with them?  Nobody’s holding a gun to your head, saying, “Don’t throw that Chase bank plastic in the trash, go out and buy a couple of flat screen TVs with it.”  Leaving aside the possibly vexed question of whether you need those TVs in the first place, going in hock to some callous behemoth is not the only way to acquire them.

There are plenty of alternatives.  I’ve been handling my finances through the Vermont State Employees Credit Union for decades now.  They don’t charge me much in the way of fees, when I call them up I get to talk with a human being who takes care of my business quickly and politely, and best of all VSECU is not run by greedy irresponsible arrogant ratbastards, so far as I know.  There are many such fine institutions in this great country of ours.  So I have a solution to the problem of how best to chastise Wall Street and diminish its power.  Take your money out of it, and put your money some place that treats you with respect.  You don’t even have to be angry to do this, just tired of being (pardon the expression) fucked with.  I don’t understand, really, why a generation that grew up on “It’s a Wonderful Life” acts as if it has no choice but to keep on enriching Mr. Potter, when Jimmy Stewart’s sweet little thrift is still right there, down the street.

This entry was posted on Monday, November 29th, 2010 at 11:30 pm and is filed under society. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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