Chase Takes Away Disney Dollars
No, that headline doesn't mean Chase stopped issuing phony but somewhat real-looking alternative currency ("Liberty dollars" for amusement park goers), they're taking back their reward points on Disney credit cards in response to legislation sponsored by Senator Dick Durbin that would cut into their profitable credit card business.
This shows how gullible the American credit consumer is. They trade a shitty 10% off on overpriced family vacations and other "perks" for annual fees and then complain when this is taken away. Until said American credit consumer gets real and seeks treatment for its credit Stockholm Syndrome, banks like Chase may be able to pull the threat card enough to defeat any proposed legislation that would screw their fees. While the natural reaction to this might be to say "oh terrible Chase for capitalizing on this fact," we find it far more reasonable to absolve them of any wrongdoing. The system is built so they can manipulate it, and as far as I am concerned they can charge all the fees they want. Customers will either put up with it or move on, as long as they are still making money we can opt in or out of this unjust system.
Which we didn't get to do with, say, TARP.
Point being, it's not financial rape if your financial condition is asking for it. Don't get surprised when Chase keeps taking it.
Chase bank, one of the largest issuers of debit cards, has begun telling its customers that as a result of legislation sponsored by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) the company will no longer be able to offer Disney Dream Reward Dollars.
Wall Street has been lobbying furiously the past few weeks to push legislation through the Senate that would delay what is known as “swipe fee reform," which requires the Fed to write rules that would reduce the fee merchants must pay for using debit cards to a “reasonable” amount.
Chase's claim comes amid a dramatic behind-the-scenes fight in the Senate that pits Democrats against Democrats, Republicans against Republicans and Wal-Mart against Wall Street.
“I’ve tackled the big boys, but there’s nothing like Wall Street banks to show you muscle power,” Durbin told HuffPost.
Did you also know that JP Morgan Chase is the largest issuer of food stamp cards in the United States?
And - OMG! The big bad banks! - they use Indian call centers:
Michele Brown has seen Americans' struggles with jobs first hand. She lives in hard-hit Florida, spent 20 years in the real estate business and recently had her days as a nanny cut back after her boss had his own hours reduced.
But nothing prepared her for what happened one day when she called a toll-free line to inquire about her food stamps.
"The woman who answered the phone -- it's not like she wasn't nice or anything -- but it was kind of evident that she wasn't in the States," Brown said.
It turns out the woman was at a JP Morgan Chase call center in India.
"That really put me over the edge," said Brown, 52, of Jupiter, Fla. "It's not right because we need the work here. People are in a bad way here."
Again, the system is set up to allow - worse, encourage - this. So get outraged all you like, Chase's behavior is but a symptom of the larger problem.
According to PayScale, these Indian call center workers can expect to make around 220,000 rupees a year (including benefits). That's a little under $4950 for the year. I'm not sure how many American employees are willing to work for that but chances are they are the same ones who refuse to work retail.