Archive for February, 2009

Greedy Banks Latest Ripoff

February 20, 2009

Isn’t anyone really watching what banks are doing?  There’s another creative bank rip off in the works.

If it isn’t outrageous interest rate raises or shortening time to pay credit cards, it’s new ways and means to make money from people who have no money.  Five million collecting unemployment: Many people out of a job and collecting unemployment are getting their money in the form of bank debit cards.  Bank debit cards have fees for everything and are used by most like credit cards…

…banks charge for services.  Bank charges for information and services on these unemployment debit cards are disgraceful.  To ask a question: fifty cents per call.  To make a withdrawal: seventy-five cents per withdrawal.  An overdraft – which could be refused if it’s over the limit and stopped by the bank – costs twenty dollars.  There are more “convenience” charges.

Over thirty major US banks – for example Citi, Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase – have made agreements with the states to provide this service.  In some states the only way to get hold of unemployment cash is with a bank debit card.

True…there’s no fee if one takes out the entire month’s money at one time from a bank teller.  That’s the freebie.  Everything else has a fee. Habits are hard to break…and, most people use the debit card as a credit card and accumulate fees every time the card is used.

Banks make interest on the unused debit card money and merchant fees and the “many ways to skin a cat” customer service fees.  Unemployment benefits will increase.  Banks will increase their take.  At a time when people are at a low financially and emotionally, banks say, it’s up to the unemployment money recipient to figure out how to get the entire amount without paying repeated fees to access through the debit card…

…seem to me it’s like hitting a man when he’s down  Isn’t anyone representing this huge amount of voters going to look into this latest bank rip off?

Why We Need The Credit Card Bill of Rights NOW

February 8, 2009

It’s time to speak out – a #3 “optimism prevails, spread th word, mixing business and social relationships pays off” Universal Day encourages worldwide communication here… www.ellindodge.comOne way to speed household recovery is hastening implementation of The Credit Card Bill of Rights.  Now, credit card companies can raise interest rates without cause and without warning the consumer.  They get away with double cycle billing and use 4 point typeface in complex, legalese explanations.   They have the right to stress consumers – make us old before our time – waiting for the next Credit Card monthly statement that changes our financial commitment and puts budgeting in the dog house.

…we’re learning that Obama was read the “why we need to stay” riot act by General Patreas when he was in Iraq, on Patreas turf …we’re finding out “what exactly” and “how much” was deducted from Obama’s Stimulus Package…and, we are realizing that in two income families, the first to get axed is usually the larger-income breadwinner – the male.  Budgets cannot balance on less than half of the anticipated income.  Equal pay for equal work never seems to break through the slowly shattering, glass ceiling.  So, with job losses soaring…we’re talking more and recovering less.

 

Even the consistency of seeing the pampered pups strut their stuff at the annual Westminster Kennel Show doesn’t help the average person crack a secure, warm and fuzzy and life-goes-on-no-matter the-economy smile.  We need credit card companies to be consistent and trustworthy…they demand that of us = the consumer.

Representative Carolyn Maloney, D/NY, is sponsoring a bill to change the July 2010 implement three month from now.  The July, 2010 date that credit card companies must follow the Credit Card Bill of Rights gives them time to raise rates and the charges for late payment prior to 2010.  The bill says that rates freeze…stay the same after the bill goes into effect.  So, if I have a 4.99% interest rate now and they spontaneously up the rate to 9.99% or 19.99% tomorrow, when the Bill of Rights comes into effect, my rate freezes at 9.99% or 19.99% – whatever my interest rate is in July 2010.  And there’s more…

The Credit Card Bill to Rights includes a change in payment allocation.  Today, payments go to the lowest interest rate.  The Bill states that payment go to the highest rate balances.  There are strong changes that should improve credit card problems for us = the jerks that incurred the debts.

Ifor one, do not intend to stay a jerk – paying off my credit cards indefinitely, if something can be done to speed the implementation of the Credit Card Bill of Rights.   Carolyn Maloney gets e-mail and phone calls and needs to know she has public support.  So, to save myself stress by taking action, instead of just communicating my displeasure at the way things stand and mouthing support for a speedy Credit Card rules change, I’m on it – writing and phoning, Representative Carolyn Maloney, D/NY at:
Washington Office

Congresswoman Maloney
2332 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515-3214
202.225.7944 phone
202.225.4709 fax

 

Manhattan Office
Congresswoman Maloney
1651 3rd Avenue Suite 311
New York, NY 10128-3679
212-860-0606 phone
212-860-0704 fax

 

Queens Office
Congresswoman Maloney
28-11 Astoria Blvd.
Astoria, NY 11102-1933
718-932-1804 phone
718-932-1805 fax
This is a social invitation while doing “business” and has today’s optimistic vibes in tow…Won’t you join me?

Analysis of Pushy Palin, The Octuplet’s Mystery Helpers and Putrid Peanuts

February 7, 2009

Details and more details on this #2 Universal Day: We’re talkin’ pushy Sarah Palin, The Octuplets Questionable Mystery and putrid peanuts.

Palin Poop hits below the fold with Sarah nudging Obama – NOW?  When the stimulus package is keeping him up nights! – she’s stalking him to push the Alaskan natural gas pipeline on his current visit to Canada, first-husband, Todd’s in contempt of court with possible jail time and, the details of how first-daughter-unmarried Mom, “Bristol” got to be called “Bristol…Sarah worked at The Bristol Inn, Todd lived in Bristol Bay and Bristol, Connecticut…the home of ESPN where Sarah expected to become a sports newscaster, inspired the ever-lusting-after-publicity-Sarah to name her baby girl after them.  Then there’s details of the Octuplets conception…

…the same clinic, doctor and sperm donor that gave Nadya Suleman in vitro fertility for her first six babies, implanted her with eight embryos that produced six boys and two girls – that included two sets of twins…double duh!  And, those scary details bring me to more not-too-nice details about peanut butter…

…to buy it or not to buy it?  That’s the question on mother’s minds and food manufacturers financial spread sheets.   Details reveal; that Peanut Corporation of America’s. CEO, Stewart Parnell, knew that the peanuts carried salmonella and there is mold growing on ceilings and walls of the factory.  He shipped to processors that shipped to manufacturers who then shipped to retail stores, school lunch programs and throughout the world to emerging countries lacking nutritional food.

How could this happen?  Same old story…the overseers, The Department if Agriculture and The Food and Drug Administration are not coordinated and they are not modernized.  I hear those details a lot.  Now Obama-rama brings us “Yes WE Can”, CHANGE and although…

…peanut butter began hundreds of years ago with the Aztecs, was patented in the 1800’s in Montreal, Canada and then patented in the USA by Kellogg’s and, it seems like it’s been a food staple forever; it’s definitely time for change.  However, changes  come too late for hundreds that became ill and a few that died from salmonella in peanuts.  It doesn’t have to be peanut butter that does you in, it can be those tiny, crumbled nuts atop a cookie or in a candy bar. 

Unlike the Securities Exchange Commission that hasn’t punished selfish Wall Street CEOs for making the public sick in the pocketbook ,The Agriculture Department Peanut Standards Board kicked the unscrupulous Peanut Corporation of America’s CEO off the board.  With the recession tightening food budgets, losing nutrition-filled peanut butter from the kitchen cupboard is a disaster.
 
With it’s reasonable price for all the good stuff that we get from peanuts and as peanut butter, it’s two year, unrefrigerated shelf value, in mind; should we risk eating peanut products now?  “Is it worth wondering if my family will suffer more from eating jelly alone or will they suffer a salmonella illness if by chance they eat tainted peanuts?” 

The decision is on how you calculate risk when you know the details.  For me…just as an eight embryo, in vitro implant in a thirtyish young woman is a bad judgment call and Sarah Palin’s insistence on attention from President Obama in time of worldwide crisis is foolish and naive, until I hear from agencies I can trust – that every tainted, tiny peanut crumb is identified and there is no longer a “peanut problem”, I’ll eat  my crackers with jam.

A Numerologist’s Analysis of a Good Cry

February 6, 2009

Looking at the world through rose colored glasses is the only way to go…for me.  It’s a mind-set that I know will keep me crying-for-joy-healthier and stop a flow of depressing tears throughout the incoming four years of recovery.

On this #1 “start something new” Universal Day, I’m gonna’ begin a get happ-ier diet.  When I think of heroes…scores of young people serving in Iraq and their families and Sully, the pilot who brought his plane down safely.  When I feel the joy of the parenting craze begun by the Obama family.  Job losses and shrinking retirement funds are causing generations of families to live together.  And, with all the negatives of “two women in the kitchen” there are the pleasures of grandchildren and grandparents sharing life experiences.  There are happenings brought about by the failing economy that create or bring back better images.   And, even good thoughts can make me cry…

…tears of sadness and the eyes oceans of joy are “emotional perspiration” according to Benedict Carey in the NY Times.  Sweating out misery or joy…that makes me smile.

Crying reminds us of infancy when a cry brought comforting.  Crying blocks thought.  Crying may balance thought.  Crying may not be the end all to soothing emotional pain, however, it is always a catharsis of sorts.  Sometimes a good cry gets it all out and energy returns.  Sometimes a good cry brings exhaustion and depression that drains ability to solve problems.  So, I’m gonna’ do selective crying on my “happ-ier diet.” 

I’ll tear-up when they play the Star Spangled Banner and drip delicately at a wedding.  I did well-up at pictures of Obama looking proud as he tried on his new Air Force One jacket…he evokes my maternal reactions.  And, I will create an ocean of joyful tears when the stock market goes up, my house appraisal gets realistic and helpful investment interest rates return.  I’m gonna’ wear my rose colored glasses to remind me to stay on my happ-ier diet – to keep me truckin’ and above ground long enough to cry when my peace-of- mind returns.

Cheney Memoir is Gonna’ Revel He’s “Right”

February 5, 2009

A #9 Universal Day brings in expansive news that makes one draw conclusions – and, in these unusual times the additions are really strange…

…here’s a case where the wife unwittingly got the best in a divorce settlement a few years ago.  A man had to pay his wife half of their 5.4 million in holdings and their holdings were with Madoff.  So, he’s suing her for a return of the funds blaming Madoff’s false securities statements given to the judge as the cause of him being left with nothing but paper – she has the only cash: He’s frantic.  She cannot be reached for comment.  And…

…this economy is making some people spacey.  A Man robbed a Colorado store with a Star Trek Sword – Madoff is being defended by an attorney that lost money with him – Barney Frank actually thinks eight CEO’s are going to accept his invitation to a hearing to testify to their accountability for 115 billion in bailout funds…

..and angry, mean and needing a padded room…one of the most detested public figures in history, Dick Cheney is writing his memoirs.  Will you buy this book?  Cheney says that he will prove he’s right when he reveals, up to now, secret information.  He’s been so truthful these past eight years…duh. 

In the world according to Cheney – nuclear, biological, catastrophic attacks were stopped by his water boarding torture techniques, the intrusive Patriot Act and the focus by the Bush administration on terrorist waiting to pounce.  They had no time to waste on the national economy – which according to Cheney is a global problem.  Tis said he seems  “unhinged.”  I conclude that “the crazies” are not his entire problem.

Now that he’s not in a position to give war zone contracts to companies in which he has a vested interest, he’s gonna’ take the Octuplet’s mother/Sarah Palin route to make money from a book deal.  That’s not crazy – it’s greed…

…however, greed is not for everyone.  An Ohio teacher who earned 40 K a year gifted her alma mater with 2 million.  I’d rather she wrote a book on how she saved the cash.  In these unusually strange times, I’d buy that book.

Comparing Octuplet’s Mother with Tom Daschle – Strange Bedfellows

February 4, 2009

Strange bedfellows, octuplet’s mother, Nadya Suleman and US Senator Tom Daschle have similar ethics and relationships problems:  Out of balance – Numerology Challenged – morals, ethics, standards, an over-stimulated need to protect and nurture and a parental nature that feeds on emotional contact – and, creates situations that elicit dramatic responses.  This numerologist sees what they don’t see.

Tom Daschle has a double #6 Challenge and his Destiny is a #6.  So, he is obsessive and compulsive in his relationships and meets the people and experiences in his Destiny that cause him to over-react.  I doubt that he has room in his mind to put the proper importance a non-emotional, seemingly mundane – need to pay taxes.

The #6 Challenge is motivated by the desire to be the center of an adoring family.  To Daschle, his working family and his personal family deserve and receive the same obsessive responsibility in relationships and overly stimulated emotional responses to their problems.  Daschle is beloved by colleagues for his genuine emotional responsiveness and unselfish acts and he is respected for his ethics and moral fiber.  With his mind and emotions overflowing with other people’s problems that he feels compelled to solve – and, having  the talent to see the needs that he feels responsible to fill, he’s a good caregiver to everyone and a bad parent to himself. 

Daschle believes that his morals, standards and ethics are pure and he wants everyone to live up to his perceptions of right and wrong.  He believes that he knows what’s good for everyone.  He just doesn’t understand that “live and let live” allows people to maintain self respect.  He can be a smothering do-gooder who doesn’t “get it”  and goes to extremes in his “what’s right from wrong” judgments. 

In this a strange comparison of a young woman eager to breast feed and mother fourteen children, Nadya Suleman and Tom Daschle, a public servant eager to nurture and sacrifice for a nation, I see the neurotic, “I have a lot of love to give”, common denominators.

Public opinion sees Suleman’s hiring a press agent-manager, expecting to be a baby expert talk show host and negotiating book and TV deals, as greed.  Public opinion sees Daschle’s ignoring to mention his tax problems when approached by the president to accept the responsibility of overseeing education, a high powered office that nurtures children, as greed.  This numerologist thinks they see themselves as doing good for others and I do not think they have any perception of their out-of-balance understanding of right and wrong.  They are “Strange Bedfellows.”

A Numerologist’s Analysis of Personal Chaos

February 3, 2009

There’s  #7 Universal Day news to ponder…On the back to simplicity topic…the rage in Italy is miniature cupcakes…libraries, meatloaf and spaghetti-and-meat-balls make a comeback.   The weather?  ‘Cause Phil, the Groundhog,  predicted it – and he’s a tried and true “predictor”…it’s gonna’ be another six weeks of cold weather and probably a colder stock market.  However, The National Academy of Sciences is investigating Alzheimer’s as brain type diabetes – hormone insulin could protect against damage to brain cells – the key to memory – and offer Alzheimer’s patients disease-modifying treatments.  That’s the good news..
 
Once again, I am reminded that my #6 Personal Day stresses emotions if I don’t focus on home.   I awoke at 5 AM…It’s 6:27 AM and the dog has thrown up in the office, on her four inch thick…very furry…real lamb skin bed –  my coffee spilled all over an upholstered chair, the carpet and me…when I tripped on the bouncing, vibrating dog hovering around my feet.  The dog is haywire ’cause I am not keeping our morning routine,  The computer is meandering as I try to work fast.  Plans to leave the office at 9 AM to cover a political rally and my quick-stepping made the dog nervous and we all know, “haste makes waste” — I will never get to cover my story as a timely or calm reporter….

…’gotta shower, dress-nice, remember the camera and stay calm so my drama-queen-dog doesn’t get mad at me…and, when I’m gone leave a “disapproving-dump” where I can easily step in it when I get back/…It’s my #6 “family responsibilities and a stay-at-home focus” Personal Day…

…I said yesterday, in my #5 Challenged Personal Day, “I never learn.”  The lesson: Ya’ gotta’ follow the numbers or chaos reins!

A Numerologist’s Self-Analysis of Yesterday’s “Oops”

February 2, 2009

pink-dress-for-cdOops…close but no cigar!  The Arizona Cardinals had me gleefully, dropping my martini glass for refills, screaming, “yes, yes, yes” until instantly, some “he who shall remain nameless to me” Pittsburgh Steeler, caught the ball: A Cards win “went south.”  In mini-seconds, due to a miracle catch, after I accurately predicted a surprising, exciting game my prediction of an Arizona-Southwestern Cardinals “first”- a Super Bowl win – went northeast.

I saw the seconds ticking away with the Cards leading for an upset – and then – the amazing Steeler defense put my yesterday’s prediction of a Cardinals win – to a partial success.  Today, sober and back  to reality I wonder “what ever made me blast predictions all over the Blogging networks?  Aha…there’s my usual excuse for indiscretions and mishaps, “The devil made me do it.”. 

Same numbers are attracted to themselves!  Yesterday’s #5 “expect the unexpected” Universal Day strange things happened.  Our swimming American hero, Phelps, admitted to “doing pot”…the Pope continued to defend his Bishops who deny the Holocaust , supposedly sane mothers are reported hosting chickenpox parties – children’s play dates with a germ – and it was confirmed that doctors in a fertility clinic put eight eggs into a penniless, single mother of six and nursed her through to delivery of a litter of eight — the unusual was news – so, my #5 Destiny should have attracted a Cardinals win…

…my psychic-whoopee sports prediction wasn’t unique…experienced sports journalists, Gregg Doyel and Pete Prisco predicted the Cards were a “21st Century, flashy, fun” and gonna’ win team.  However, in the future, since sports predicting is not my bailiwick, I’m gonna’ practice what I preach and stick to my area of expertise because, predictably human and only right, according to feedback, 98% in thirty-nine years……with my #5 Challenge to my  #5 Destiny…the problem is…there are some things ya’ never learn!

So I’m gonna’ chalk yesterday’s “close but no cigar”, partial “oops” up to, “The Devil made me do it” and continue to be guided by an empathetic angel suffering with a #5 Destiny – carrying a #5 Challenge, who when repeating mistakes, excuses herself with, “The Devil made me do it” –  chastises herself with, “I never learn! – and feels compassion for me too.

A Numerologist’s Analysis of Super Bowl Surprises

February 1, 2009

…for this numerologist’s early morning, it’s a time for, late afternoon game, Super Bowl prediction.  There’s no getting away from #5 “expect the unexpected, surprises, upsets, plans change” Universal Day and on my, #4 “work , be practical and produce tangible results” Personal Day, it’s Super Bowl Sunday and you may ask, who’s gonna’ win?

The new millennium began in September 2008 and a universal Genesis began.  Witness the election of the first African-American President of the USA who made visionary promises – did not run on past performances – as a platform for election.  Venerable politicians with long-standing. outstanding carreers and public service records, promising more of the same could not sell hope for the future…and they lost.  The past will not return to be relived or old structures followed.  The solutions to new millennium problems will be “firsts” and so, in keeping with the “nothing old is new again” theory…the Super Bowl winner will be “a “first.” 

On the premise that the winner does not have a Vince Lombardi Trophy to hang their helmets on; the winner should be the team that has never won an AFL or NFL World Championship or played on the Sunday that followed the championship game or won the football’s showpiece, The Super Bowl.  So, I have to forecast a win for the Arizona Cardinals.

Philanthropic, born-again Christian, father of seven, Kurt Warner and “no one should mention his noisy, smelly nickname out of the locker room” Darnell Dockett – Go…Go…Go!  With long-term congrats to the Pittsburgh Steelers winning past performances…”Big Ben” Roethlesberger and “Smiling” Hines Ward as standouts…you’ve been there-done that…this probably isn’t your day.