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Government


  • We Owe Them A Debit of GratitudeGovernment, Banking, Blog, Money

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    And so, we begin anew. During the Great Congressional Financial Services Smackdown of 2009 and 2010, Illinois Democrat Richard Durbin inspired fellow Senators to pass an Amendment to the Dodd-Frank Act directing the Federal Reserve to study and, hopefully, reduce the relatively unknown “swipe fees” that banks collect from retailers every time a consumer uses a debit card to make a purchase. Last summer, the Federal Reserve responded with a call to cut swipe fees […]

  • Are the Deregulators Trying to Destroy the Economy?Government, Banking, Consumer Protection, Blog, Money

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    I understand that deregulators are committed to an ideology. We all need something to believe in, after all, and they believe in the power of markets to both create growth and self-regulate. That’s all very nice and looks good on paper, but given the past few years, that argument simply doesn’t pass the straight face test. I mean, let’s be real, deregulation nearly destroyed our economy as the past few years clearly demonstrate. But the […]

  • Are CARD Act Critics in Complete Denial?Financial Literacy, Government, Banking, Politics, Consumer Protection, Blog

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    In law school, I was taught – as are all aspiring lawyers – to perfect the art of arguing any and/or all sides of a case. The lawyer’s mantra – “If you can’t beat on the facts, beat on the law. If you can’t beat on the law, beat on the facts. If you can’t beat on either the facts or the law, beat on the table.” The American Bankers Association has been a vociferous […]

  • How the Feds Got the Guy They Already HadGovernment, Blog, Identity Theft

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    You have to appreciate genius. You also have to scratch your head and ask whether the inmates (literally) are running the asylum. On January 20, 2011, the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio announced that Dimorio McDowell, the leader of an identity theft ring that ran up $250,000 of fraudulent charges, was sentenced to more than 14 years in prison. Unfortunately, while the crime is not unusual and the amount wasn’t shocking, […]

  • Holly Petraeus, Military Family Watchdog Slated for Consumer Protection Agency PostFinancial Literacy, Government, Consumer Protection, Blog

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    One of the highest priorities of this nation must be the passionate and zealous defense of our defenders. With hundreds of thousands of American military personnel stationed around the world, tens of thousands in hot zones where they live from minute-to-minute in harm’s way, we must never waver in our commitment to provide the best armor, most advanced weaponry, cutting-edge equipment, ample supplies, thorough training and sophisticated intelligence so that they have whatever they need […]

  • Colorado’s Pot Plan: Orwellian Surveillance or Sound Law Enforcement?Government, Blog, Privacy

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    Here’s a news item that makes me sit back and scratch my chin: Colorado lawmakers and regulators are creating the nation’s first surveillance system to track the sale of medical marijuana. The state will use video cameras to track pot sales. It’s also considering additional tracking measures including fingerprints of prescription holders and radio frequency chips on pot plants. The goal is to make sure that pot buyers actually have prescriptions and that customers buy […]

  • Credit Freeze – An (Intentionally) Inconvenient Process?Government, Blog, Money

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    So, you live in one of the 20 states that allow all consumers – not just victims of identity – the right to freeze their credit. And, you’re thinking of taking advantage of the opportunity to protect yourself from identity theft. It should be easy, right? Well, not exactly… The St. Paul (MN) Pioneer Press reported on October 23 that one of its readers, anxious to take advantage of the new credit freeze law, tried […]

  • Credit Freeze – An (Inconvenient) Ounce of Prevention?Government, Consumer Protection, Blog, Money

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    If you asked identity theft victims whether they would have preferred to protect themselves before or after their information was stolen, there’s a good chance they would opt for “before.” Take, for instance, the story of Dawn Higgins, of Arlington, VA. This week, The Daily Times of Salisbury, MD reported the devastating effects of identify theft on Higgins’s finances. She had purchased rental property in another state and entrusted the property management to friends. Unbeknownst […]

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