Djcnor’s Weblog

Usury 2009

Posted on: April 5, 2009

While the American public has been keeping its eyes on the bonuses given AIG employees and the bail-outs for for the car companies and who Obama bows to, something else has been going on that they ought to be howling at the top of their lungs about.

They have probably received one of those small print innocuous-seeming letters from one or more of their credit card companies. “This is just to let you know that the terms of your credit are changing.” It’s never good news, is it. But the things in the latest ones go beyond, or rather below, the minimal standards of morality we have come to expect from our credit card companies.

Here’s a list of the types of things you might find in your letter(s):

1) The due date for your payment is changed. Moved forward of course, and you’ll have to look over the letter pretty thoroughly if you want to know when it’s changed to. In fact, my letter didn’t give me that information at all! It just told me to watch my next few bills because there would be an announcement in one of them. And you’d better be diligent about it, because if you should happen to miss it and send in a payment late….

2) Your interest rate could change, or rather CHANGE! The list of things you might do that would trigger such a change is getting larger and larger, as is the size of the CHANGE that is the consequence. In my case, the CHANGE in interest rate would be to THREE TIMES my present interest rate. On that list of things you might do that would trigger the change is going over your limit, which might be all too easy to do because…

3) Your credit limit could change, or rather CHANGE! Downward of course, or rather DOWNWARD! In fact, your limit could be reduced to BELOW the amount you owe or just above it. Should you not pay up immediately in order to come in below the new credit limit, guess what happens? (Review point 2.) 

Congress is working on tightening the rules that credit card companies operate under, so the card companies are doing a whole lot of this lately while they can still get away with it.

Those rates in question could be 30% or higher, and you know what that is?

USURY

which means an exorbitant or unlawful rate of interest. It may not yet be unlawful, but it will be, and it should be. And lawful or not, USURY is what it is.

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