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By Liz Pulliam Weston
A lot of you are really and truly sick of your banks.
You're sick of getting socked with fees, or tripped by hidden penalties, or earning lousy interest rates. You're tired of being treated like a nuisance rather than a customer. And yet you have little hope that the bank down the street is any better.
But who says you have to settle for a bank? Relief could be as close as the nearest credit union.
Because so many people are fuzzy about the differences between banks and credit unions, I'll highlight the three most important distinctions:
- Credit unions are member-owned. If you have an account at a credit union, you're a part owner in the enterprise. That may not entitle you to use the executive washroom -- your CU probably doesn't even have an executive washroom -- but you're likely to be seen as a person rather than as a "cost center."
- Credit unions are not-for-profit. This status helps explain why interest rates tend to be significantly better, and fees fewer and smaller, at credit unions than at banks. Any profits credit unions do make are distributed as dividends to their members. Contrast that with banks, which continually invent new fees and policies to boost profits (and to pay those stunning executive salaries).
- Banks hate -- hate -- credit unions. President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Federal Credit Union Act into law in 1934 to "promote thrift and thwart usury," and banks have been gunning for them pretty much ever since.
Because of their not-for-profit, cooperative structures, credit unions are exempted from most state and federal taxes. Banks have convinced themselves this is an unfair advantage and have spent a lot of effort, plus a fortune in lobbying fees, trying to legislate credit unions out of existence, or at least limit who can join. (I guess they thought the money was better spent there than on, say, improving their interest rates, reducing their fees or slashing their telephone hold times.)
And who do we have to thank for most of it? The criminal global banking cartels that have wedged themselves between government that has the power to create "debt free" money and everyone and everything else. They have seized control over our monetary system and every single dollar issues is LENT by the criminal global banking cartes, at interest when they do NOTHING to earn any of it.
By Michael Cheek
The national debt is the single biggest threat to national security, according to Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Tax payers will be paying around $600 billion in interest on the national debt by 2012, the chairman told students and local leaders in Detroit.
“That’s one year’s worth of defense budget,” he said, adding that the Pentagon needs to cut back on spending.
“We’re going to have to do that if it’s going to survive at all,” Mullen said, “and do it in a way that is predictable.”
He also called on the defense industry to hire veterans and become more robust in the future.
“I need the defense industry, in particular, to be robust,” he said. “My procurement budget is over $100 billion, [and] I need to be able to leverage that as much as possible with those [companies] who reach out [to veterans].”
Mullen highlighted the unity of purpose between the government and industry as well, in working to solve national security issues.
“I have found that universally, [private-sector workers] care every bit as much about our country, are every bit as patriotic and wanting to make a difference … as those who wear the uniform and are in harm’s way,” he said.
By Paul Joseph Watson
When even the New York Times and CNN are admitting that the United States faces not only a double-dip recession but potentially a new great depression, any alarm bells that have not been rung should now be sounding loudly.
Following in the footsteps of the New York Times’ David Krugman, who in June wrote that the United States had entered a third depression similar to the Long Depression of the 19th century, CNN Money carried an article yesterday brazenly entitled, Is this finally the economic collapse?.
The piece, written by Keith R. McCullough, points out that the Fed’s announcement that it will start buying Treasury debt, is a “crossing the Rubicon” moment and “could lead the country to the brink of collapse”.
“Crossing the 90% debt/GDP threshold is the equivalent of crossing the proverbial Rubicon of economic growth. It’s a point from which it’s almost impossible to return,” states the article, adding that the market has not responded to quantitative easing so to engage in more of the same would be completely futile.
“With 40.8 million Americans on food stamps (record high) and 45% of the unemployed having been seeking employment for 27 weeks or more (record high), what’s left if (or when) QE2 doesn’t kick start GDP growth? Should we start begging for QE3? Should we cancel the bomb of the National Association of Realtors’ existing home sales report, scheduled for public release on August 24th? Or should we bite the bullet and accept that current economic policy dictates 0% returns-on-savings, even as Washington continues to lever-up our future to the point of economic collapse?” writes McCullough.
By Liam Halligan
Last week, President Obama signed into law the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform bill – hailed as the most sweeping overhaul of US financial regulation since the 1930s.
"Because of this law, the American people will never again be asked to foot the bill for Wall Street's mistakes," Obama boomed at the schmaltzy signing ceremony, amid bursts of applause.
"These reforms will put a stop to a lot of the bad loans that fuelled this debt-based bubble," the President gushed to America and the rest of the world. "This bill also empowers consumerse_SLpsdelivering the strongest consumer financial protections in history."
It would be reassuring if we could agree with Obama, concluding that Dodd-Frank will help to prevent the next systemic crisis and associated bail-out of "too-big-to-fail" banks. Reassuring, but wrong.
For despite some marginal regulatory improvements, this is no Rooseveltian legislative milestone. Amid the hype and back-slapping of last week's launch, the sad reality is that Dodd-Frank fails to address the fundamental problems that resulted in the sub-prime fiasco and the related damage to not just America, but the entire global economy
Obama’s Phony Financial Reform Bill a Stunning Triumph of the Wall Street Derivatives Lobby — Tell Your Congressman to Vote It Down!
Although many are calling the financial reform bill a win for the White House, Webster Tarpley says that the bill leaves too much power in the hands of the Fed and doesn't make any real changes.
While I think Ron Paul has done quite a bit to advance the awareness of the fraud of our banking system, except for the comments inpuning Dr. Paul's underlying character, I feel the same way as Blizzard does. Dr. Paul is not as clear as he could be about a great many things, this being one glaring example. I don't know why Dr. Paul fails to make things as clear as he could. I personally don't think it's because he's part of the controlled opposition. My guess is that he's been in Washington so long he's habituated to "self censoring" himself and the message because until recently, it was not well received. We all know that if you're in politics, you're always keenly aware of how your enemies will spin everything you say in as negative way as possible. So Dr. Paul keeps his comments within boundaries that cannot be spun. As the climate for truth is changing, Dr. Paul is becoming more bold and clear about many things.
by Tony Blizzard
In 2004, I printed out a Ron Paul article titled "Debt, the Greatest Threat to Our Security" because it sounded pretty good and I knew the danger of our already insane debt.
But that was before I began paying attention to Paul's words rather than his hype. Today I took a closer look at that article. It explains a lot about Paul's true agenda.
Congress was once again upping its debt ceiling so it could keep on borrowing past the then top of $7.4 trillion, already a number no one can truly comprehend.
Paul wrote: "Government debts are not repaid by those who spend the money - they're repaid by you and future generations."
Actually they're never paid at all. ("Repaid" is a misnomer the bankers love. They never paid anything. The debtor is the only real payer.)
Much of the money that constitutes "the national debt" was created out of nothing by the Central bankers. Where does Paul think the money came from? But he fails to point this out because of the implications (i.e. it doesn't need to be repaid.)
Interviews with bankers about a foreclosure. The banker was placed on the witness stand and sworn in. The plaintiff's (borrower's) attorney asked the banker the routine questions concerning the banker's education and background.
The attorney asked the banker, "What is court exhibit A?"
The banker responded by saying, "This is a promissory note."
The attorney then asked, "Is there an agreement between Mr. Smith (borrower) and the defendant?"
The banker said, "Yes."
The attorney asked, "Do you believe the agreement includes a lender and a borrower?"
The banker responded by saying, "Yes, I am the lender and Mr. Smith is the borrower."
The attorney asked, "What do you believe the agreement is?"
The banker quickly responded, saying, " We have the borrower sign the note and we give the borrower a check."
The attorney asked, "Does this agreement show the words borrower, lender, loan, interest, credit, or money within the agreement?"
The banker responded by saying, "Sure it does."
The attorney asked, `"According to your knowledge, who was to loan what to whom according to the written agreement?"
The banker responded by saying, "The lender loaned the borrower a $50,000 check. The borrower got the money and the house and has not repaid the money."
The attorney noted that the banker never said that the bank received the promissory note as a loan from the borrower to the bank. He asked, "Do you believe an ordinary person can use ordinary terms and understand this written agreement?"
The banker said, "Yes."
The attorney asked, "Do you believe you or your company legally own the promissory note and have the right to enforce payment from the borrower?"
The banker said, "Absolutely we own it and legally have the right to collect the money."
The attorney asked, "Does the $50,000 note have actual cash value of $50,000? Actual cash value means the promissory note can be sold for $50,000 cash in the ordinary course of business."
The banker said, "Yes."
The attorney asked, "According to your understanding of the alleged agreement, how much actual cash value must the bank loan to the borrower in order for the bank to legally fulfill the agreement and legally own the promissory note?"
The banker said, "$50,000."
The attorney asked, "According to your belief, if the borrower signs the promissory note and the bank refuses to loan the borrower $50,000 actual cash value, would the bank or borrower own the promissory note?"
The banker said, "The borrower would own it if the bank did not loan the money. The bank gave the borrower a check and that is how the borrower financed the purchase of the house."
Totally unbelievable! Mainstream media allowing someone to tell the truth about the MASSIVE FRAUD that has been perpetrated on the people of this planet by the global banking cartels! Make sure you pass this on to everyone you know!
By John Carney
The image of banks locking their doors to keep customers from making withdrawals during a bank run is what immediately came to mind when we heard that Citigroup was telling customers it has the right to prevent any withdrawals from checking accounts for seven days.
"Effective April 1, 2010, we reserve the right to require (7) days advance notice before permitting a withdrawal from all checking accounts. While we do not currently exercise this right and have not exercised it in the past, we are required by law to notify you of this change," Citigroup said on statements received by customers all over the country.
What's going on? It seems that this is something of an error. The seven day notice policy only applies to customers in Texas, Ira Stoll reports at The Future of Capitalism. It was accidentally included on customer statements nationwide.
"Whatever the explanation, it doesn't exactly inspire confidence in Citi," Stoll writes. "But it's hard to believe a bank would be sending out a notice like that on its statements."