Category: banking


The Bankers “Own” The U.S. Congress.

From the category of “Yea, no kidding” comes this gem over at Salon:

Sen. Dick Durbin, on a local Chicago radio station this week, blurted out an obvious truth about Congress that, despite being blindingly obvious, is rarely spoken: “And the banks “” hard to believe in a time when we’re facing a banking crisis that many of the banks created “” are still the most powerful lobby on Capitol Hill. And they frankly own the place.” The blunt acknowledgment that the same banks that caused the financial crisis “own” the U.S. Congress “” according to one of that institution’s most powerful members “” demonstrates just how extreme this institutional corruption is.


Interactive Map of Bailout Recipients.

Not really sure what purpose it can serve, but it is interesting to see who/where/what is receiving bailout funds around the country. Each marker represents the headquarters of a financial institution that expects or has already received money from the Treasury Department under the TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program). The size of each marker represents the amount of bailout money given to each institution. Click on the markers to see the institution’s name and amount it’s receiving. Check it out here.


How Do You Know When You Have Enough?

Do you have “enough”? Are you working extra hard to buy extra stuff that you don’t actually need? How many hours of your working day go towards unnecessary expenses? Could you work less hours if you required less stuff? Wanted less stuff? Had less stuff?


Why I Continue To Bank With Bank Of America.

First of all, because Bank of America is still in business…for now. So many banks have folded and/or merged that I am glad that BofA is still around. I have been a customer since 1995 when I moved to California from Massachusetts (before BofA was even in MA) and have always had great luck with them. As with any business, there are people who have had bad experiences with them, but I have never had a problem (knock on wood). However, when we moved to New Mexico last year, I had a choice to make as there was no BofA here at all. The closest branch is 23 miles away, and the next closest is 39 miles away. Kind of a long drive to do your banking, especially in the winter when mountain roads become kind of scary. After investigating several of our local, small-town banks, we chose to continue to bank with BofA and to start doing most of our banking by mail. I know I have written about “shopping local” before, and how it can benefit the community, and I feel the same about banks. Unfortunately though, our local banks don’t offer anything near what bigger banks do, and what they do offer they nickel and dime you for. So, we stayed with our original bank, and here are a few reasons why:


Some Economic Facts From Mother Jones.

Thought I would pass along these little gems first thing this morning, just a “pick-me-up” to start your day with.

In 2007, the top 5 firms paid out $39 billion on bonuses, even as their shareholders lost $74 billion. Those same firms have now received $60 billion in bailout funds.

In December, after just 3 months on the job, Merrill Lynch executive VP Peter Kraus quit with a $25 million parachute. A day earlier, Kraus’ wife paid $36.6 million for a Park Avenue apartment.

In the first 3 quarters of 2008, finance, insurance, and real estate companies spent $343 million on lobbying.

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