There’s been a lot in the media this week about small print, after the scandalous mis-selling of PPI by the banks. As Annie Shaw rightly warns, we need to “Be careful out there” because the vultures are all too ready to prey on our next phase of uncertainty or greed.
Mopping up the aftermath, once we’re totally floored by the minefield that is simply being a consumer, are the dodgy debt advisers, hoping we’re too scared, ashamed or stressed to notice a scam. What’s more, the number of debt companies going bust whilst key advisers abscond with borrowers’ money remains grotesquely underreported.
Glorified loan sharking is all it is, when you con someone into trusting you to make their debt repayments for them and pocket the lot. Honest people, trying to do the right thing, are being conned. But when debt’s a dirty word and the government wants us to spend, spend, spend, it’s swept under the carpet to keep the consumer paying.
Have we got news for you...
The extra quid here, there and everywhere that we're forced into paying for not fitting into the convenience of “competitive markets” overlooks one glaringly obvious fact. These leeches need us to spend our money and no matter how little we have, they want it. In fact, without us they are powerless because a market cannot exist without consumers.
When every pound in mis-sold goods and services, unfair charges, and packages of so-called convenience is a trick, we are fools to buy into claims of competition. We can make or break competition as easily as Susan Boyle became an overnight success, because we are competition and these rogues damned well need to start competing for our business.
Are you seriosuly going to allow the energy companies to treat us as fools, demanding increases to match wholesale prices, when it never works the other way, or to continue packaging countless saver deals, making it impossible to compare value for your hard earned cash?
Will you swallow Ofcom’s party line that Telcos converting our lines to LLU networks, then demanding £80 when we want to dump an inadequate service are investing in our interests?
Is it okay for Tesco to make £6000 profit a minute yet refuse to pay checkout staff a living wage, or worse still cut these jobs entirely with machines that save them millions in employment taxes? Their taxes go down yours go up by the way - every little helps, don't you know?!
Are you happy to accept banks that gear the entirety of their services on unwitting over withdrawals simply to justify yet more charges for handling our money? Not sure they're being paid enough?
Or will you simply be paying billionaire, Mark Zuckerberg, 13% of every transaction you make in his empire for the joy of using his Facebook credits? Yes, sir, my money sir? Please rob me blind, sir.
It’s time we woke up Team GB! This is our country. It is our money and we are worth one hell of a lot more than the deals we are getting. For goodness sake let's give it some wellie!
Want a say in how we do things?
For £1 a year, Zero-credit membership
is open to anyone, aged 16 or over
with personal experience of borrowing.
Alternatively, if you're a business, why
not support our Research & Development?