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Video cartoon spoofs new credit card law

Connie Prater

Have you been reading change-in-terms agreements mailed by your credit card company? Eyes starting to glaze over with all the fine print?

Take a break for some comic relief with this YouTube video cartoon (scroll down to view it) that spoofs the new credit card reform law. It’s the latest creation from cartoonist/illustrator Mark Fiore (www.markfiore.com) and pokes fun at the Credit CARD Act of 2009, the new federal law signed by President Obama in May 2009. Among other things, the law will limit how much credit card companies are able to earn from interest and fees starting Feb. 22, 2010.

Fiore’s animation calls the law the Safe Credit Revision Everyone Wins Undertaking (or SCREW U) law. As CreditCards.com articles about creative new fees have already shown, credit card issuers are scrambling to rework their operations to comply with the law while still earning profits. New fees — not specifically banned by the new law — are cropping up weekly.

Fiore levels his sarcastic cannons at these efforts, telling viewers in infomercial-style hyperbole what they can expect from the credit card industry:

  • Exciting increases in interest payments.
  • Optional options are mandatory.
  • Thought processing fees every time the words credit or credit card enter your mind.
  • Left-handed fees, which will apply to right-handers, too.
  • Air breathing fee (“oxygen is not priceless; it’s billable”).
  • A cardless fee — for not having a credit card at all.

Why the new fees? “Because we want to get as much of your money now as we can, and because we want to get as much of your money as possible before we can’t,” the cartoon contends.

There’s this tag line: “Credit. Don’t leave home without it, because you don’t have cash anyway.”

Another funny line: “The consumer credit reform is imaginary until deemed real by the credit company protection plan.”

The video had gotten more than 2,400 page views as of Jan. 4, 2010. Not exactly viral, but who knows, there could be thousands of people needing a break from reading their credit card agreements. They may want to laugh — and then think about where the line between comedy and reality begins to blur.

As one of the comments on the YouTube page notes:

“So where’s the humour? Where are the made-up exaggerations of what credit card companies do or want to do? Everything in this video is stuff they do now or would try if they could get away with it.”

See related: A comprehensive guide to the Credit CARD Act of 2009, Creative new fees escape CARD Act rules

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  • David_S

    That video was fantastic! Thank you for the comedy but in all seriousness these card companies really are pushing people already struggling up against the wall.

  • Abe

    Very funny and sad at the same time.Thanks for the post!

  • Charles Robertson

    Talk about hitting the nail on the head!
    What we need is a credit card revolt, I propose that for the month of April (in honor of the IRS and US Government who brought us this) that everyone who has a credit card only make the minimum payment (I would rather everyone not pay at all – but less people would participate). Spread the word – let this be a warning to the Banks and Credit card companies that the public will not take this anymore and they need to change their ways before everyone defaults.

  • Well, I think that only making minimum payments on a credit card account does little, if anything, to hurt banks. What it does is draw out the time it will take consumers to pay off their balances (and increase the amount of interest they pay). That’s not revolt. That’s insanity. IMHO.