What To Do with $

I don’t see very many $s these days, but I do want to be faithful with the few that pass through my hands. I have not done very well on this in the past. And I’m afraid, I still am not. But I do care, and I do want to improve.
One of the blogs I keep up on a little bit is that of Mike Hamel. He posted something new this morning about a booklet called the “Better World Shopping Guide.” Rather than retype everything he said about it, I will just point you to his post.
I also checked out the BetterWorldShopper site. VERY interesting!!!
I was surprised not to find Chase on the list of the top 20 worst companies. But JP Morgan was #5 on the top ten bail out companies list.
I still marvel at the fact that the JP Morgan company that received bail out money is the same one that bought out my bank (Washington Mutual) for a fraction of a penny on the dollar. And following this obscene profiteering, they have consistently done their best to yank every penny they can from my family and me, sometimes to our considerable hurt. It really is like Prince John and the Sheriff of Nottingham. 😦
Anyway, I am passing on Mike’s encouragement to check out this Better World Shopping Guide.

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9 thoughts on “What To Do with $

  1. KC, I find this an interesting post… One question came to my mind.

    How has Chase “yanked” money out of your hands to the detriment of your family? No bank or financial institution can do anything to us we don’t first agree to.

    We have banked at WaMu for years, now Chase, and have never paid them a penny since they changed hands. I am not in favor of corporate welfare either, but it is the system we have and I am afraid we can do little to change it my friend.

    • Thanks for asking, Keith!
      I know what you mean, but it’s actually not true that they can’t do things we don’t first agree to. We have had a number of things happen to us at Chase and only found out about their policy changes after we inquired about what had happened. I understand that there is now some regulatory attention being paid to this stuff, but for the first couple of years of Chase, we had to endure some pretty nasty stuff.
      In our case, we have had very little $ the last few years. Sometimes we struggle just getting our ends to meet, and sometimes it doesn’t quite work. When that happens, we get pummeled with fees, etc. An example of the kind of thing Chase does is hold a number of payments you make and rearrange the order in which they consider them to have been logged, intentionally putting the biggest first so as to cause a greater likelihood that you will have one or more bounces–and therefore, more opportunities for them to collect overdraft fees. One of them admitted to us that this is their practice. BTW, Chase received a “D” on the report card at Better World Shopper. We hope to move to a local bank or credit union soon, but it is difficult to do until we can get ahead enough to make the switch.

      On another note, would you mind my adding “Daily In Christ” to my Blogs-O-Ineterst page? 🙂 Thanks, brother! Shalom!

  2. Thanks KC. I truly understand the making ends meet thing. I wouldn’t mind you adding my blog at all. Thanks for the props.

    The bank I use for my business received a D as well, but I have found them to be a great bank with excellent service. I also think it is pretty much a subjective issue and is different for everybody. Walmart received an ‘F’ rating and it is packed every day with customer’s who save thousands a year there… they employ hundreds of thousands of people, have convenient locations, offer benefits to employees, sell products at competitively low prices which brings all market prices lower, and offer name brand products…so go figure.

    As far as them beating up their vendors, my take is this… If you want to do business with the giant you better know it will be on their terms. If you don’t agree with their terms, then try selling a million widgets to someone else, or don’t sell them at all.

    That’s my 2 cents worth… all for free!

    • Thanks again, Keith! I recently checked out a movie from the library called “Walmart: The High Cost of Low Price.” Have you heard of it? Some of the expose is a little cheesy or forced, but much of it is very worth seeing. The question, it seems to me, is this: How does one get to be such a giant? Personally, even with my slim funds, I would rather pay the extra couple of bucks for a widget (if really need it) in better hopes that it isn’t being provided to me over the necks of people in third world countries, etc. Thanks again, man!

  3. One more note… I had my money at OnPoint for years. (It was Portland Teachers back then) It was late in the evening and my bank card didn’t work on a purchase at the beach in a restaurant. I called the number on the back of the card and they were closed till Monday… Guess who transferred all his money to a big bank on Monday when he got home.

    Credit unions and small banks are good for service and fees… when they are open! Be careful to have a bank that has 24 hour service or you may just be stuck cleaning the dishes after a nice meal 🙂

  4. Hi KC! I’m glad to have found your blog. A few comments about the post – lists like this make me nervous because, although there was a list of five issues that the companies were rated upon, it doesn’t spell out what their preferred position is for each area. For instance, when they write “union-busting efforts”, does that mean that they favor union-busting or avoid businesses that employ anti-union tactics. As a recent and somewhat reluctant member of a union, I am not always sure either side is completely without blame. Also, I think that customers voting with their feet often hurts those who are most vulnerable. Locally, some people are trying to organize a boycott of a pizza chain for some action its owners took, I think related to health insurance for employees, but not patronizing the shops mostly hurts those employees who will receive reduced tip income and are now more likely to be laid off. I’m not sure that there is a way to win in situations like this. Again, thanks for posting this conversation, and I’m looking forward to reading even more of your thoughts.

    • Hey, guys!
      I’m glad you found me too!
      But I can’t tell from what you’ve said whether this is Jack or Alison.
      You raise some good points.
      I’m not sure about the specific stance of Better World, especially on the union issue, but I did notice that the guy who runs it encouraged questions to be asked and gave an e-mail address.
      I understand what you’re saying about the employees being hurt, too. In broad scope, I suppose it would be fair to say that companies who make the bad list are not only ones from whom we should not shop, but also ones with whom we should not seek employment. For example, I would not take a job at Walmart. But that hardly helps in local situations like the pizza chain you mention. (Is it a local, regional, or nationwide chain?)

      Thanks so much for stopping by TLW!!!
      Please keep in touch!
      And of course, it goes without saying (but I’ll say it anyway), if you’re ever in the Portland area, our casa is your casa!
      Shalom! 🙂

    • Oh!… Now that I’ve approved your comment and checked it out on the actual blog page, I see who you are! 🙂
      Hi, Alison!

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