Thursday, March 03, 2016

DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz Co-Sponsors Legislation To Protect Payday Loan Sharks

He lends at interest and takes a profit. Will such a man live? He will not! Because he has done all these detestable things, he is to be put to death; his blood will be on his own head ~ The Christian Bible, Ezekiel 18:13 (New International Version).

In another in a string of disappointing moves, Chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee and Rep for FL's 23rd district, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, has gotten into bed with the payday lending industry with legislation that she is co-sponsoring (!).

Payday lenders fearing modest federal regulations will cut into their vast profit margins have a new, high-profile ally in Washington: ...Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) is co-sponsoring legislation to delay and permanently muffle pending Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) rules to rein in small-dollar lenders that are currently able to levy triple-digit annual interest rates on the nation's poorest... The bill would force a 2-year delay of the CFPB's rules... the bill... would... permanently block [CFPB rules] in any state that enacts the sort of ineffectual, industry-crafted regulatory sham that FL adopted in 2001.

That bill featured "compromise language heavily influenced by industry players", the FL Alliance for Consumer Protection notes. Rather than a model for robust oversight that still allows low-income people to access emergency credit when they need it, the group describes the FL approach as a series of "well-disguised loopholes" that preserve the industry's abusive patterns. (The Official Head Of The Democratic Party Joins GOP Effort To Protect Payday Lenders by Alan Pyke. ThinkProgress 3/1/2016).

I call payday lenders "loan sharks" due to the interest rates they charge. Rates that fit the definition of usury.

Usury is the practice of making unethical or immoral monetary loans that unfairly enrich the lender. ... A loan may be considered usurious because of excessive or abusive interest rates or other factors. ... Someone who practices usury can be called a usurer, but a more common term in contemporary English is loan shark.

The term may be used in a moral sense - condemning taking advantage of others' misfortunes - or in a legal sense where interest rates may be regulated by law. Historically, some cultures (e.g., Christianity in much of Medieval Europe, and Islam in many parts of the world today) have regarded charging any interest for loans as sinful. (Wikipedia/Usury).

Yeah, I'd say it's sinful, in that it's morally reprehensible for "some of the worst predatory bastards in America" (according to Charlie Pierce), to be raking in so much profit via sky-high interest rates in regards to loans to those who can least afford this overcharging.

...22% of borrowers end up rolling their loan over seven or more times, loans in such misery cycles account for 62% of the industry's business. Trapping people in lengthy repay cycles is literally the primary source of industry income. About 76% of all FL payday borrowing is rollover loans within two weeks of a previous loan, and 85% of all loans are part of a reborrowing sequence of seven or more straight high-interest loans. The typical borrower there pays 300% annual interest. (excerpt from same ThinkProgress article quoted above).

Add to this the fact that DWS voted to fast track the TPP (The 28 Democrats Who Voted For Fast Track), vigorously opposed a 2014 medical marijuana amendment in FL", and has inappropriately used her position as the DNC chair to tip the scales in favor of Hillary.

...speaking of the debate, why did Wasserman Schultz schedule it for the Saturday night before Christmas, at one of the least-watched times on television, virtually guaranteeing low ratings? ...the DNC under Wasserman Schultz wants to guarantee that as few people as possible actually watch the Democrats' own debates! Hillary's campaign wanted as few debates as possible to prevent her lesser-known opponents from getting free television exposure. DNC limited debates to six, compared to 26 in the 2008 campaign... (Fire Debbie Wasserman Schultz by Miles Mogulescu. Huffpo 12/18/2015).

All proof that it's time for Debbie to go. The Progressive Left (the heart of the Democratic Party) should no longer tolerate an obvious corporate shill as DNC Chair. Heck, I'd say she needs to be primaried and booted out of the House as well. Which she is being, btw. Good luck to her challenger, Tim Canova (Meet Debbie Wasserman Schultz's First-Ever Primary Challenger: Tim Canova).

Image: HRC Campaign surrogate/shill Debbie Wasserman Schultz is inappropriately attempting to use her power as DNC Chair to anoint Hillary the Democratic nominee (5 Times Debbie Wasserman Schultz Violated DNC Rules and Stacked the Deck in Favor of Clinton).

RNUSA: Wasserman Schultz To Go? (12/20/2015).

SWTD #328

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