BOYCOTTING BIG BANKS – YES WE CAN OR NO WE CAN’T
My Dialogue with a Bank of American (BofA) Associate Banker
Last Thursday I walked along Park Avenue South with a fellow formerly employed companion heading to another Noble Desktop Publishing seminar on Broadway. My companion spied some lollipops on a desk in the lobby of a Bank of America we were passing along our way. She decided to drop in to grab a couple, and while she was there, to find out why BofA had decided to start charging her $5 per month to use her debit card. The lollipop station was manned by a young Master of the Universe type (we’ll call him MaOu: pronounced – ‘may owe you’) and a young woman who appeared to be the master’s administrative assistant.
My formerly employed friend asked, “Didn’t BofA realize how many people were unemployed and how they couldn’t afford any more charges?”
The apparent assistant had just begun to shake her head in affirmative empathy when MaOu stepped out from behind the desk to take control of this situation. He cut off his assistant with a quick, dismissive glance and, straight from Power Move 101, grabbed my formerly employed friend’s hand and firmly led her back toward the door with an unfriendly handshake. He introduced himself as Mr. WhoGivesaFlyin, a BofA Associate Banker. He then, beamingly, explained away BofA’s new charges and any responsibility towards its customers. He said “blame it all on Dodd-Frank. That’s a little piece of legislation that the government passed that requires us to raise our fees.”
That set me off. “Everybody should boycott BofA’s debit cards.” I countered. He just smiled and smugly said, “All the banks were adding the surcharge.” I answered; “then we’ll use the unaffiliated debit cards offered at the local drug and convenience stores. We’ll use the Rush Card. We don’t have to accept consumer abuse.” Well, he didn’t like that answer one little bit. In fact, he got downright indignant at the suggestion.
He said; “Look, you can do that if you want to but we’re a private business and we have to make money for our shareholders. I’m a shareholder and I want the company to make profits. When the government passes these regulations it hurts our profits so we have to charge our customers. We’re in business to make money. He then gave our walking along the street in the middle of the day, most probably on the government dole, brown faces an accusing look and added
“The government doesn’t give us money we have to earn our money.”
Okay, that’s when I blew my top. “WTF was TARP, that $700 billion with a B wasn’t government money. Then WTF was it, was it Monopoly money.” Yes, I was yelling at him. But he had an answer for that too. “Yes,” he said, “TARP was government money, but we paid back every penny.”
Can you believe that shit? I put my hand on my hip and my neck into action, and in my best poor black girl from Brooklyn, NEGRO PLEAZZZE voice (he wasn’t black, but it suited the situation), I asked “Should I give BofA a cookie for repaying a loan it never should’ve gotten.” Better, I asked; “If some bankrupt, mismanaged, credit defaulted, small or medium sized business, or person, had come to BofA to get a low-interest, flexible repayment, ten times greater than their net worth loan, would BofA give it to them?”
I turned on my heels, grabbed my formerly employed friends arm and stormed out of that lollipop lobby without waiting for an answer. I mean, what else was he going to say? BofA was handing out the lollipops; but once again, we were their suckers. I wasn’t in the mood to listen to anymore. I was in the mood to fight. It was time to make him, all his other MaOu friends, BofA, and all the other Big Banks listen to us.
We were no longer going to let them require us to have to earn money for them to pay themselves bloated bonuses or their shareholders irrational profits. We were no longer going to let them privatize their profits and socialize their losses. We have been sucked dry. It’s time to take the Universe back. It’s time to Boycott Big Banks.
That’s right, after what that eMeFer said to all of us through me and my formerly employed friend and how he said it. After he showed us how un-sorry and unrepentant BofA and all the others were about the damage and loss they had caused, it was time. We would have to bring them down to build us up.
This is the moment we all must decide to dedicate ourselves to fighting these MaOu fools. It’s the moment we all need to join the Occupy Wall Street Movement and spread it as far and wide as we can until we bring all these Too Big to Fail or Give a Shit banks (and businesses) to their knees where they brought us.
It’s time to Boycott Big Banks. We survived the crash of ’29. We’ll survive this too.
Stand-In - Opt Out:
Take your boycott big banks signs to your nearest lollypop lobby today.