Banner photo of Larry Eugene Meredith, Ronald Tipton and Patrick Flynn, 2017.

The good times are memories
In the drinking of elder men...

-- Larry E.
Time II

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Anger From One Year to the Next

I am not a person easily angered. It usually takes a lot. Nor do I stay angry long. On those occasions in my life when I have reached a boiling point I usually let off steam by throwing something, generally what is in easy reach. I don't throw it at anyone. I just throw it. My anger goes away then like a cold when the fever breaks. I throw it, I feel better immediately and I fairly quickly cool down.

Then I feel bad because I probably broke something of mine I didn't want to break.

These instances occur, thankfully, very, very infrequently.

It's also something those knowing we well are happy about. They know my anger is rare, comes quickly and goes away just as quick. I am not someone whose anger will seethe and continue for hours or days. So this is probably the exception that proves the rule.

I became angered prior to New Year's Eve and it has not gone away. I am still angry. Perhaps it is because I didn't throw anything and it is too late for that now. And I am not angry at one thing, either, but several things.

The first thing that angered me was my wife overdrew our account at one bank. No, I wasn't angry at my wife. I was upset because I figured we'd get charged a fee and I was unhappy because we haven't had an overdraft on our accounts for at least a decade. But I wasn't angry at anyone or anything yet.

My wife went to have her prescriptions filled and she used the wrong card in paying. It had been an honest mistake. We have accounts at two banks. Unfortunately the debit cards of both are green and look similar. She thought she was using the bank card of the account we had money in. It wasn't and this resulted in a $28 overdraft.

I check my accounts online regularly. I was shocked to see an overdrawn account. I did not see any fee charged yet, however, and I went immediately to that bank and deposited $40 dollars. My receipt then showed us having a positive balance, not much, but positive nonetheless.

Thus the next morning I am doubly surprised when I check my account and see it overdrawn $25. Why am I doubly surprised? Not so much by the fact this was caused by the charging of an overdraft fee as the fact my pension check was not deposited as expected. This is when my anger began.

Definition of Usury: the illegal action or practice of lending money at unreasonably high rates of interest.

It would seem that an interest rate of 132% for a one day "loan" is a high rate of interest. Of course there is that phrase in the definition: "the illegal action or practice". Certainly 132% is a high rate, but is it actually legal?

Definition of a Loan Shark: A person or entity that charges borrowers interest above an established legal rate. Depending on where a person lives, lenders typically cannot charge more than 60% interest per annum. A loan shark, then, would be someone who illegally charged interest over the state's legal limit, which could range up to, or even over, 100%.

So, 132% is more than 60%, but the definition says per annum. This 132% I was charged was daily, actually less than a full 24 hours before I deposited the $40. That is an annual rate of 48,180%, which would make any loan shark drool with envy.

Now I know it would not become 48,180%. If I didn't deposit to my account for two days or a week or a month, it would remain at 132% If I waited a year, although they would probably have closed my account by then, it would still be 131%, but still a lot more than 60% per annum!

Do I think this is fair and right? No, but I will explain why in my next post. I'll give you a partial reason, why did the bank allow her to overdraw? Why didn't they reject the purchase? I'll tell you next time.

Meanwhile, I leave you with this:

What’s the difference between Congressmen and manure?

With manure you can spread it across a field and it will yield worthwhile crops.
While congressmen are full of it, all they produce is crap.

(The photograph of Congress in session taken by the author, 2011.)

1 comment:

Ron said...

My sympathy is with you for being caught in the trap of overdraft fees. As you know this, and many other previously uncharged fees, is how banks make money (lots of it) these days. Back in the Good Old Days they made money by taking the difference with what they paid the depositor who had a savings account and the interest rate they charged for a loan. Now days most banks find making loans cumbersome (too much paper work all those amortization schedules and posting payments every month). If they do make loans then it is to their Good Old Boy Network of buddies. Banks income is now fee based and casino gambling on foreign exchanges. I am glad I no longer work for a bank as I am sure you are too. It's a whole different world now Lar. I hope this is resolved for you soon. It would anger me to and my anger would linger. In fact, I'm angry just hearing about it.