Skip to main content

Banks DON'T want to help you

OK, this is a bit of a rant but I'm a bit frustrated with banks right now.  They have all of these cute commercials about how they want to help you achieve your goals.  The truth is that they don't.  They don't want to help you, they want your money.  They'll say and do whatever they need to get it but that's what they're really after.

Bank policies are based on how much income they get from their customers.  They will charge you for anything they can get away with.  There are fees for everything.  They also encourage you to borrow money for anything you want.  I recently saw an ad for a medical credit card encouraging customers to use their credit to get plastic surgery.  This is a card that charges about 17% interest.  Oh and that's another thing: interest.

It seems to me that interest rates are backwards.  Those that need money the most seem to be charged the highest interest rates while those that already have a lot of money are charged less.  That doesn't seem right.  However, it's business.  It's all about risk.  Those who don't have a lot of money are a greater risk so, by charging higher interest, banks insure that they make their money back sooner.  That way if a lender can't finish paying, the bank has a greater chance of having already made back what it loaned (which won't stop it from bleeding every last penny it can from the borrower).

Credit card companies are the worst.  They start by charging huge interest rates and then it gets better.  If you miss a payment (or are just a little late) they reserve the right to bump your interest rate up to as high as 30%.  A company that really wanted to help would work with borrowers that are having financial difficulties.  Instead, credit card companies charge you more fees and higher interest as though their goal is to make sure it takes forever to pay off your balance.  Oh wait, maybe that is their goal...

I guess the moral of this rant is never to trust a lender.  So remember, always read the fine print, understand the terms, and don't borrow unless you have to.  Above all, be very careful.  Banks are NOT trying to help you, they're trying to profit from your needs/wants.  


Popular posts from this blog

Insteon: Controller vs Responder

This entry is going to be more of a technical article.  If you're not planning on setting up scenes in an Insteon environment, this isn't for you.  If you are or like me, have been running into some confusion about what should be set up as a controller, what should be a responder, and what should be both.  Here's what I learned.

I've been using Insteon switches for a couple of years now and had set up a few scenes.  When adding a switch to a scene, you have the option of adding it as a controller, a responder, or both.  Not knowing the difference and wanting to cover my bases, I set all of my scenes to both.  Since my scenes were all timing type scenes (e.g. turn on night lights at sunset) it worked fine.  Then I added an 8 button keypad and started programming the buttons to control other lights.  The program for this, of course, is a scene.  Once again, I set every switch and button as both a controller and a responder.  Then I created a scene, specifically for my E…


I just finished reading The Agony and the Ecstasy by Irving Stone. It's a biographical novel of Michelangelo (you know, the famous sculptor/artist whose statue of David and the paintings in the Cistine Chapel are super famous) that gives a very interesting view of his life. It seems that while Michelangelo had a very productive life, it wasn't a very happy one.

One of the first things that I noticed about Stone's portrayel of Michelangelo is that he was obsessed with creating sculptures and a true perfectionist. For a large portion of his life (into his 60s it seems) his every action was calculated toward a goal of sculpting marble - either getting a commission or improving his talent (or both). Not only did he want to sculpt, he wanted his pieces to be as real as possible.

His obsession with carving perfect sculptures drove him to do endless studies of the human form. He even spent months sneaking into a morgue to dissect bodies so he could figure out how the body real…

Sonos Control with the Amazon Echo - How I did it

I've had my Amazon Echo for a year or so and one thing that I've wanted ever since I purchased it, is to be able to use voice commands to control my Sonos speakers.  I waited patiently (OK  not patiently) for Sonos skill to appear on the Echo but it still hasn't come.  I was encouraged when Sonos announced it was going to focus more on voice but still nothing.  Isn't there any way to control my Sonos with my Echo?

Yes - sort of.

WARNING: This post is not for the faint of heart because the solution is not trivial.

So, I found a project on github that uses another project on github combined with a custom skill on
the Echo via a web service hosted by AWS Lambda.  OK, that was the easy part.  I knew that going in.  That's why, initially, I waited.  There must be an elegant solution out there.  I searched and waited and searched again and waited again.  Finally I decided to give it a try.  If it worked it would be really cool.  If it didn't, well I'm no worse o…