Are you familiar with the Office of Financial Research? You may not be, but I hope I can change that. Over the past couple of weeks, we have highlighted examples of wasteful spending and how a bloated federal government leads to a situation where no one has control over how our tax dollars are spent. Oversight in these cases has been severely lacking and I am of the opinion that this is a direct result of our federal government being so overgrown. It is a case of the left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing and it goes completely against the way our government is designed to work. One of the things that needs to be strengthened is congressional oversight of → Read More
Back in May, I wrote a short post about the issue of debit card fees, linked to the fact that Dodd-Frank was about to take affect and limit the fees banks could charge retailers whenever a debit card was used in their business. Because of that, banks were lining up to raise their fees, one of which is the fee which they charge their customers who use a debit card. At the time, I was of the opinion that this fight should be between the banks and their customers, with the retailers not really entering into the picture. I still hold that opinion, as I believe it is inherently unfair for a retailer to be charged a fee when I use my own debit → Read More
As with any issue, there is always two sides of the story, two parts of the argument, for and against a particular issue or debate. In this case, the debate is over a little piece of plastic that most of us use every day, better known as the debit card. Actually, the debate is over who should pay the fees that are associated with using a debit card and how much those fees should be. Those fees are called interchange fees and unless you operate your own business and accept debit cards, or are like me and privy to some of the fees your employer pays, you may not even be aware of them. No matter, the fees are there and they have long → Read More
The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission’s report reads like a retroactive defense of the Dodd-Frank reform bill, and downplays the monetary policies that created the conditions for the housing bubble.
The President’s Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission issued its final report last week. “If we do not learn from history, we are unlikely to recover from it,” the six-member majority concluded. While I agree with the statement in principle, the report’s conclusions are too flawed to be taken seriously. Indeed, given that the majority consisted of the six Democrat appointees (all four Republican appointees dissented), it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the report reads like an ex post facto justification for the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill. The report is also dangerous to the extent that → Read More