My wife and I do much of our banking at Bank of America, including using debit cards issued from them. Needless to say, neither one of us was really thrilled by BofA’s adding a fee for using the debit card on purchases. While it would be easy to blame BofA for taking this action, I know it came as a result of the passage of the overly burdensome Dodd-Frank financial regulation law passed by the Democrats of the 111th Congress, which included an amendment added by Dick “Turban” Durbin (D-IL) that was the catalyst for the fee introduced by BofA and other banks. As of right now, neither one of us is talking about closing our BofA accounts, but will figure out how to avoid paying the fee.
Dodd-Frank is just another in a long line of failed efforts by the federal government, Democrats in particular, of reining in potential abuses by big corporations. At the company I work for, we still spend an undue amount of time working on fulfilling the government’s requirements under the last bit of ridiculous overreach, Sarbanes-Oxley. It is, to be generous, a productivity killer. SOX came out of the Enron debacle, just as Dodd-Frank came out of the financial crisis the government would have us believe was the fault only of the finance industry; naturally, they avoid taking any responsibility even though the Carter-era Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) and subsequent regulatory changes by the Clinton administration under the CRA, along with the ethically-challenged actions of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, were just as much if not more to blame for our current economic woes (please note that there have been no reforms of Fannie or Freddie since all this happened, as the two continue to suck money down the toilet). What’s even better is that even though SOX is in place, it did nothing to prevent the economic meltdown. The obvious question then is, what the hell is SOX around for?
Just as it has been proven that Obamacare has increased health insurance premiums (mine went up 10%), Dodd-Frank and Durbin’s amendment is adding extra costs for non-wealthy people when banking. Well, I know what to do; I’m going to send a bill to Durbin requiring him to immediately pay me the $60 I would need to continue to use my BofA debit card as I was, and periodically resend the bill until he pays off or I get bored.
Cross-posted at Scipio the Metalcon.