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A Right to Keep and Bear Credit Cards

Barack Obama isn’t too keen on the right to bear arms, but he certainly thinks people who are irresponsible with credit cards deserve some extra “rights”.

5 Responses to “A Right to Keep and Bear Credit Cards”

  1. Mike w. says:

    “Isn’t too keen” might be the understatement of the century.

    A former Joyce Foundation board member saying he respects the 2nd Amendment rights of gun-owners is like a former KKK member saying he respects the civil rights of blacks.

  2. Dean J says:

    We have a system that sets precedent on preventing predatory business practices.

    The low-end credit card companies regularly engage in predatory business practices.

    Either we scrap the government trying to protect anyone from anything, or we make our laws consistent, and protect consumers against the small print in credit agreements.

  3. Sebastian says:

    I don’t think it’s an either/or proposition, and in truth, I’m not really that opposed to the idea of the government staying out of the business of protecting people from known hazards.

    It may be fine print, but it’s still there for anyone to read, and if I couldn’t understand the contract well enough, I wouldn’t sign it. It’s not rocket science to know getting into a lot of credit card debt is a bad idea, no matter what the terms of the card are.

    I do consider that to be different than, for instance, the FDA regulating drugs to guard against the possibility of fraud (a company claims a drug is efficacious when there is, in fact, no proof of that) than protecting people from their own bad choices.

  4. Breda says:

    that is a fantastic observation. Good work, Sebastian.

  5. Sebastian says:

    I think you have to distinguish between regulation to protect people from unknown threats vs. regulation to protect people from known threats. The former has some relation to a legitimate function of government, which is to prevent fraud. Even in the case of drugs, I’d be less likely to justify government regulation of a product that was toxic, as long as it was labeled as such. Vioxx, for instance, was mildly cardiotoxic according to some studies, but there were plenty of people who still understood the risk, and wanted to take the drug anyway, because it benefited them where other drugs in that class did not.

    People should be free to make choices as long as the risks are presented to them. In the case of credit cards, the terms are spelled out in the contracts, which a reasonable person would be expected to read before signing up.

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