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How you know the End is Nigh

We’ve been living with out of control capitalism, now in New Accelerated Format, for almost five years now.  It’s a quickened version of what’s been happening over the last 30 years.  Ever since Reagan, the media has bamboozled the public into giving the rich whatever they damn well please with the expectation that the rich will let us keep our jobs.  The evidence has shown that this does not work but you’ll have to read Krugman for the wonky stuff and teensy (or completely absent) labels on the x and y axises of his graphs.  I guess economists don’t need labels and units but it drives this chemist crazy.

I’m not here to talk about all the overwhelming evidence of wrongdoing that has been going on since 1980, or the massive layoffs that have probably permanently impoverished my generation or the fact that all of this has happened with the complicity of an older generation of seniors who thought the whole world revolved around what happened between women’s legs.  No, I am here to talk about the end times.

In this case, it will be the period of time when the strip miners of Wall Street have taken the top off the mountain almost completely and there is very little wealth left to extract and more and more middle class people are waking up to discover that “we wuz robbed” and there’s just no THERE, there anymore.  Where will the excess gobs of cash come from then?  I mean, after the obscenely rich have cornered all of the disposable income, and then some, in their underground lairs surrounded by their faceless, nameless goons in cold and modern chic livery, do they sit around with their heads in their hands weeping like Alexander that there is no more money in the world to conquer?

Heck no!

NOW, they get in on the payday loan scam.  It’s fricking brilliant!

Major banks have quickly become behind-the-scenes allies of Internet-based payday lenders that offer short-term loans with interest rates sometimes exceeding 500 percent.

Subrina Baptiste of Brooklyn says JPMorgan Chase allowed payday lenders to seize child-support funds in her account.

With 15 states banning payday loans, a growing number of the lenders have set up online operations in more hospitable states or far-flung locales like Belize, Malta and the West Indies to more easily evade statewide caps on interest rates.

While the banks, which include giants like JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America and Wells Fargo, do not make the loans, they are a critical link for the lenders, enabling the lenders to withdraw payments automatically from borrowers’ bank accounts, even in states where the loans are banned entirely. In some cases, the banks allow lenders to tap checking accounts even after the customers have begged them to stop the withdrawals.

What are the chances that Barack Obama will look up from scheming with his 25 year old male senior advisors to “help” the Congress “win” in 2014 by focussing all of their PR efforts on a couple of distracting issues instead of fixing the problem of chronic unemployment and gross exploitation of average Americans, or directly challenging the Republicans with muscular Liberalism, and actually develop some sense of outrage that is strong enough to prod his justice department to actually, you know, DO something to the banks besides taking them to the back bedroom, closing the door and instructing them to wail loudly as he smacks the bed with his belt?

Yeah, I didn’t think so either.

By next year, when we’re all on Obamacare (sorry, Democrats, you’re going to have to own this one in an election year.  Hope you’re ready, but all indications are that you are not.) and trying to pay all of our bills on time, with a heaping side of gigantic health insurance thrown in for good measure, there will be an increasing number of us vulnerable to the siren song of the payday loan.  “Borrow now against your paycheck, pay 500% interest later!”  What could be more natural?

The big banks are investing in it heavily, wouldn’t you know.  So, this has to be one of the signs of the end.  Now that the MBAs have skillfully evolved the work place every two seconds in accordance to their bonus shortened attention span, AND severely crippled productivity by putting all the burden of getting things done on the shoulders of a few, and because they have so completely decoupled the cause and effect relationship of work with positive reinforcement, given the fruits of labor to the shareholders, closed the pension funds, and divested themselves of all responsibility to the people who, you know, WORK,  now that they’ve scraped every last penny out of every last bank account, it is now time to reserve all incoming pennies for their own purposes too.

All our monies are belong to them.

And then what?

I’m not sure but I suspect it ain’t going to be pretty.

29 Responses

  1. 500% annual interest? A scheme like that could crash the world in a lot less than a year. I’m thinking that it’s way more than this considering that it will be multiplied by many, many desperate people.

    • Needless to say, you’ll be in debt to the banks for the rest of your life.

      • No one has that much money. Unless you can pay it off in a couple of days, there isn’t enough in the whole world to cover a loan like that.

      • The next step would be to create a “legal market” in organs, so you can be coerced into selling a kidney to cover the debt. Surely your heart bleeds for the deserving rich person who needs a kidney but just simply can’t buy one anywhere.

  2. Have you heard that a Walmart Executive wrote an email in which he whined, “Where are all the people and their money?”
    My answer is they’re home, fired and broke. Congrats, your union bashing and wage depression have won the day. Yay, you.

    • I’m going to need a new car soon. Do I have the money for a new car? No, I do not. If I were working a full time job with benefits, I would have the money for a new car.
      I drive a used car now and even a new used car is kind of a stretch.
      Don’t be surprised if the car companies are the next to complain.
      As you say, Yay them.

      • And since cash for clunkers there are no 2,000 dollar cars anymore.

        • I thought that program ended some time ago.

          • It did. But the cars that were turned in (cars that were NOT clunkers — they just didn’t get great gas mileage) were taken completely out of service. Cement poured into the engines and the bodies crushed. Even the parts were destroyed. That drove the price of the remaining cars in that older-car-price-range WAY up. You used to be able find used Honda Civics for $2,000 here all the time. Now you’d be lucky to find one for $4,000 for a 20 year old car!! Honda Civics weren’t even clunkers but the numbers of 20 year old cars has been so reduced the ones that are left are valuable.

          • Ahhh, that explains why I’ve had offers from people who want to buy my old PT Cruiser. Can’t get parts anywhere.
            Which kinda sucks because if something goes wrong with this car, I can’t get a new one and I have to wait sometimes weeks for the part. It happened with the multifunction switch that is notoriously bad in Cruisers. it kept draining my battery but I had to put my name on a waiting list for a new switch. In the meantime, I had to replace my battery- twice. So, I had to live with the old switch and disable the fog lights. Now, no more fog lights. And the heated seats don’t work either. Not a problem as long as the engine runs. But now the oil pressure sensor is on the fritz and for reasons I can’t go into, I can’t park my car at the service garage to get it fixed right now.
            So, yeah, filling the engines of old cars with cement was probably not the best idea in the world.
            Let me guess: 25 yr old senior male advisor came up with it.

          • I think your PT Cruiser is like my Honda Civic — they weren’t crushed but there is such high demand for used cars after all the crushings it’s driven the value of the ones that are left way up. I’ve had notes left on my Civic with offers too. I’d take ’em — but THEN what would I drive? It’s crazy.

            I think I wrote a post about it (might have just been a comment though) back-when and even our commenters thought I was nuts at not LOVING the Cash for Clunkers idea. (Ha! “even our” … I’m sure they’re long gone now)

          • Ok, so let me see if I understand this: the plan was to help the car markers by decreasing supply. So, by taking all of the excess used cars off the market, you’ll be forced to buy a new car.
            Except people ain’t got jobs, people ain’t got money. So, if you need a new car, you are forced to get a loan for one and if you don’t have a job, it’s hard to get a loan. So, fewer people can actually afford new cars even if they need one AND they can’t find an affordable used car.
            Yeah, what could possibly go wrong with the Cash for Clunkers plan?

          • Check to see if there is a TSB (recall) on the multifunction switch assembly.
            I had heard that Wall street was going to start investing in “Buy here, pay here” used car dealer operations.

      • I was one of the victims on that one. My great $3,000 Civic that would have lasted another decade got destroyed by a doctor in a hurry running a caution light. Best replacement I could find was the Corolla I’ve got now, which cost $8000 and comes with a four-year fucking note. Guess who doesn’t have a damn savings account now.

    • Plus sending all their thingmaking jobs to China, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Haiti, etc. That helped win the day too.

      (Notice how I didn’t say “Mexico”. That’s because I still don’t have those numbers. One of these years I will get those numbers and depending on what they say I will either tender my surrender or I will charge Mount NAFTA all over again. Any year now.)

  3. Do I have this right?

    They locate the Payday Loan business in a state that hasn’t outlawed the scam. Part of the deal is that the repayment is automatically deducted from your checking account. Then you don’t ever have to worry about having money again. You won’t.


    • This is correct. Of course, if only affects people who are poor so there’s not much chance of anything getting done to fix it because if you had money, you’d be able to pay a congressman and get their ear. Then again, we are rapidly creating more and more poor people so sooner or later, a critical mass of poor people will be hard to ignore.
      I love the part about them taking child support payments. That’s priceless. You’d think there should be a law against this but apparently it is NOT against the law to deprive children of their support.
      Warning to parents getting support payments, keep it in a separate account. I’ve followed this practice religiously. That money is not to be co-mingled with other income.

  4. If we started referring to Obamacare as Catfood Obamacare, would that make it sound even worse? Would that make it even more embarrassing to the Democrats who passed it?

    I hereby offer the phrase Catfood Obamacare to anyone who thinks it would make an even better tire iron to beat the Obamacrats with. If the phrase Catfood Obamacare is too clunky, it will die an unseen death off in a ditch somewhere.

  5. IIRC Alexander was pissed off not because he’d conquered the world (he hadn’t) but because he’d gotten wind of Aristarchus speculations about other inhabited planets and had had to radically downgrade his prospects for actually conquering “everything”.

  6. The vampire bankers still have a few places to suck blood from: privatizing schools (those charter schools where they teach nothing and select only the best students are real money makers), more privatizing of prisons, operating domestic drones, buying governments (legally, I mean), raiding existing pensions until there’s nothing left, and, of course, Social Security. They already raided that once for the unfunded Iraq War, but there are still ways to extract rents.

    So, yes, they are starting to get desperate because they cannot control their need for blood and the supply is running thin, but there is so much left to destroy – and destroy it they will. it’s all they know.

  7. Revolution is in the air…

    • My advice would be to “keep it legal” and don’t accept any undercover policeman’s kind offer of tools and plans for violent action.

  8. All of the above brought to you by Barry, Harry, & Nancy your new and improved democrats.

  9. I don’t get the impression that anyone I live around will notice. They seem to have plenty of money and they aren’t interested in politics.

  10. Let’s see…money laundering ( HSBC ) and now loan sharking. What a disaster. These Wall Street banks are a social menace. If we don’t put them down, they will put us down.

  11. Indeed…we don’t have a capitalism system anymore, it’s cannibalism …and unfortunately one runs out of that resource
    rather quickly. When they have stolen the last penny and sit on it …then what? Have they figure that one out yet?

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