A ballot initiative in Colorado that would impose a 36 percent APR limit on payday loans has attracted some tongue-in-cheek comment from Denver Post columnist Jon Caldara. His column is likely to strike a chord with NILA members all of whom will have come up against the kind of credit snobbery and nanny-state attitudes that it lampoons.
Calling out “Proposition 111”, the article speculates on the thinking behind it, saying,
Because poor people are stupid, they make stupid decisions. Their bad decisions only make their situations worse and leave them even more poor. And, of course, being even poorer makes them even more stupid, leading them to even more stupid decisions. It is a vicious, circular spiral. Thank God poor people have government!
A caring society has a duty to rip poor people away from their ability to direct their own affairs. It’s for their own good and well-being. And it has the added benefit of making the rest of us feel benevolent.
Mr. Caldara finishes by saying Proposition 111 likely will pass easily and make voters feel virtuous, but warns that those worried about payday lending might wish to support the provision of alternatives to payday lending, rather than supporting initiatives like Proposition 111. On this last point, as providers of credit that is widely seen as a safe and affordable alternative to payday, we wholeheartedly agree!
The whole piece can be viewed here: “Poor people are stupid and need Proposition 111”.