Bank of America recently announced that it will impose annual fees on some of its cardholders. This is in response to the CARD Act (Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure Act of 2009), which effectively shifts costs to responsible people from irresponsible people, forcing banks to increase charges to responsible credit card holders.
The CARD Act has also wiped out many cash-back and rewards programs and rebates on credit cards, something earlier chronicled here. Despite that fact, its passage was trumpeted by President Obama and liberal congressional leaders, who are engaging in a form of class warfare against financially responsible people.
Earlier, the government pushed through $250 billion in mortgage bailouts, to bail out even reckless high-income borrowers, and forced financial institutions the government took over in the name of fiscal responsibility, like Freddie Mac, to run up billions in losses bailing out irresponsible borrowers. It also pushed through $70 billion in auto bailouts to enrich the United Auto Workers union, bailouts that ripped off taxpayers and pension funds and illegally diverted funds from the bank bailout to an auto bailout. (The bailouts would not even have been necessary if the companies had obtained regulatory relief and greater wage concessions, and may not even succeed, requiring billions more in taxpayer dollars by 2010.)
In today’s Washington Post, Allan Sloan writes about how the government has deliberately ripped off responsible people to bail out irresponsible people over the last year, by spending trillions of dollars to force down interest rates. That has resulted in extremely low interest rates on savings accounts and bonds, while also, to a lesser extent, reducing interest rates paid by irresponsible borrowers, despite their rising default rates.