Thursday, February 28, 2008

The Devil Lives In My Mailbox

“I think everyone knows that something just isn’t right.” – Dave Ramsey

The devil lives in my mailbox.

There is something that feels very wrong about how the credit industry markets their products to us. I am stalked each and everyday by these companies who temp me with their 0% APR and 6 months same as cash offers.

Don’t get me wrong I am not anti-credit. I just wonder if it is possible for me to have a moment to breathe without being sold another car, mortgage, credit card, student loan, furniture, or an electronic gadget on credit. Could there be just one solitary website that does not flash a LowerMyBills pop-up?

The internet is a playground for these marketers. We as consumers are little children who are led into their world. We are wide-eyed with bankruptcy laced plasma screens and drunk on consumer credit injected Kia’s. It is porn for spenders and there is nothing to do but enjoy the ride.

I would love to be a fly on the wall for one of those meetings – you know the one. It’s the meeting where all the marketers come together and talk about us like we are lab rats. Maybe we are. They have the charts on our buying habits.

I bet they know when we are about to crash. It starts out harmless enough with the credit cards. You know just a few. Did you know we are called “Preferred” customers when we pay the minimum payment on credit cards?

So where does personal responsibility come into it? When am I going to grow up and realize that the guy at Best Buy is not giving away money when he hands me an application the moment I step into his store? So, can I really blame the credit marketers for being really, really good at manipulating me?

I am starting to wake-up and come to the conclusion that I have the biggest role to play as a consumer. As the master playwright William Shakespeare so eloquently wrote – “All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players; they have their exits and their entrances, and one man in his time plays many parts,”

I believe that my part to play is to simply exercise a little restraint and say, “No.”

Thanks for listening. What is your story with credit cards? How have you been impacted? Talk to me. Post your comments - I want to hear from you.


Credit Hawk -


matt said...

Credit Hawk,

Thank you so much for your honesty. I am well aware of the tragedy that happens when you don't say "NO!"

Thanks and keep up the good work,

Matt Sullivan, CEO
Credit Dusters, Inc.

MoneyBlogga said...

Credit cards led me to the bankruptcy courts in 1996. I lost everything and my house was foreclosed. I got in way too deep with mortgages, personal loans, and credit in general. BK was the only way out for me. Fast forward 10 years and I am in the same boat again, only this time it's with high interest mortgage loans that are costing me big. Money goes through my fingers like water and I am determined once and for all to stop the flow before it really will be too late. My partner in life has been saying for the past year or two that an early retirement is on the cards in 9 years time. We will both still be relatively young but, at the rate things are going, we won't have a cent saved.

I have 4 dependants - they are all bombarded daily with credit offers. I am now the gatekeeper and all of those offers get into the trash before my dependants even see them. How in the world can these credit card companies even THINK it's OK to market to a bunch of college students who don't even have jobs yet?? Things are going to be real different from here on out - we cannot keep mortgaging our future.