Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Smoke em if you got em

I saw what may well be the most disgusting TV commercial I have ever seen. I don't watch much TV so this may have been on for a long time and I missed it. But I did see see it last night and thought are you kidding me? It was a commercial for Chase Bank visa. Couple is at home watching a beat up old TV which has seen better days. The wife gives the sign that yes he can buy a new TV. That in and of itself is offensive in the 'stupid childish man, smart mature woman' media paradigm of the 21st century. Like when the dumb Homer Simpson type tries to fix a leaky faucet, causes a flood and the wife, with that LOOK has to call the plumber. But I digress.

The disgusting part is that the man now goes to the big box store. He looks at the plethora of plasma and LCDs. He is in man heaven. Then he pulls out his phone and through the magic of the interwebs, checks his Chase credit card balance to make sure he has enough on it. I couldn't believe that shit.

These very imbeciles who need to check their credit card balance to buy a TV are the ones foreclosing on their house and crying to Hill-a-bama about how awful it is. The very same cretins who go on TV and talk about how tough life is. And then turn around and spend $3K on a freakin' TV at 18% APR. This is part of the greater pattern of if you have a dollar you must spend a dollar mentality prevalent in society. Hell, even if you don't have a dollar, if you can borrow a dollar, borrow it and spend it. It is reinforced in more subtle ways as well. Ask a so-called expert how much car you should buy and they will say 15% of your gross income. So if I make $100K, you mean I should buy a $15K car? No silly. 15% of your gross income as a monthly payment which means a nice new shiny $80K+ BMW or Range Rover. Buying a car with cash is so 1952 thinking. And besides your neighbor just bought that shiny new BMW, how are you going to look driving in that 4 year old Honda? Think of the children!

Buying a $15K car, if you can in theory, afford a $40K car make you a loser. Same with a house. If you can in theory, afford a $3000 mortgage, buying a house with a $1500 mortgage make you a loser again. And I say in theory because these ratios are arbitrary and made up by lenders/manufacturers/home builders/mortgage brokers, etc. The so called conventional wisdom of how much house or car you should buy was created by people who want to sell you a house or a car. And of course their "standard" is designed to get you to buy as much as possible, regardless of whether you need it or not. It's never about how much should you spend in order to fulfill your housing or transportation needs. It's always what is the maximum monthly payment I can make in order to go further into debt and pay interest for something I don't need. The whole notion is to keep people right at the edge. Spend every dime you earn. Get a $1000 raise, spend $1000 more. Get a $10,000 raise, spend $10,000 more. Find $100,000 on the street, spend $100,0000. It truly is financial slavery.

And now that we are in the midst of the recession the MSM is trotting out sob story after sob story of people worried about their jobs. Oh no, I may lose my job and if I do I'll be sleeping on a park bench because I can't make my payments. Help me Hillary! Here's a hint people: instead of buying a $3K TV at 18%, take that $3K and put in in the bank. Ditto for the $600 phone, the daily $5 Starbucks mocha. And how about you downgrade from the $700 a month BMW lease to a fully paid off $7K 2002 Camry which will get you from A to B just as effectively? Do this for a year or two and accumulate some savings (look up the word if you have never heard of it). Then if you are unemployed temporarily it's not that big a deal. You don't have to freak out. You don't have to panic. You don't have to to run to Hill-a-bama and ask for help like a street beggar. In other words you can be a responsible adult.

There was a story that 1 in 10 people in Ohio are on food stamps. Boo fucking hoo. What I would love to see is a survey of these poor, poor people. I would like to know the value of their cars and TVs. I would love to see the average cable and cell phone bills of these desperate down and out victims of capitalism and globalization. I'd be willing to bet some worthless US dollars that for many of those questions their number would be much higher than mine. Yet I have to pay 1/3 of my income in taxes so these worthless pieces of filth can keep up their lifestyle.


Sean said...

Yeah, But somebody's got to feed the monkey.

Sean said...

Yeah, But somebody's got to feed the monkey.

Scott said...

I think the commercial is for Chase... I remember the first time I saw that and was like wtf? Are you kidding me.

Ed said...

I stand corrected, it is Chase.

Chase of JP Morgan Chase which just got the world's sweetest deal by buying BSC for nothing with the help of the $30B loan bailout from the Fed (aka Mr. Idiot Tax Payer).

I doubly hate these bastards.

Scott said...

Isn't that the same commercial where the background music is playing "I want it all... and I want it now" or am I confusing that with another commercial?

Anonymous said...

So, how did you like the home owners storming the lobby of Bear Stearns today, raging and rioting about how they were the ones who deserved to be bailed out??

Anonymous said...


Re: 1 / 10 in Ohio on food stamps. If they're buying plasma TVs, iPhones, etc., then I have little sympathy...

...but I have friends from Ohio. That state has been raped by NAFTA, "globalization", etc. Industry has vanished (which depresses the entire economy of an area) and there's only so much that "get more education" will solve; remember, half the people are less intelligent than the average IQ. We can all be nanotechnicians...someone still has to pick up the garbage.

The Chase ad, though, should be classified as obscene; if this is what our country is worth...then we ain't worth much.


Ed said...

Gotta love the BSC home"owner" protesters. My view in general about any protest on a weekday is GET A JOB HIPPE.

Re: Ohioans

people lost their jobs/businesses in the cart, buggy, telegraph, horseshoe industries as well. Somehow the world didn't end.

My point wasn't so much about job losses as it was about people's reactions to the losses. If the guy working at the plant had saved 15% of his income over the past 15 years, then when the plant closed up for Mexico or China, he'd have many years worth of income saved up. Instead he spent all his money on cars, TVs, $200 Nike, $600 phones etc and now has to go begging to Hillary for help.

And yeah OK Ohio is a bad place to be right now for jobs. Simplest answer: move somewhere else where there are jobs. In 2002 I got laid off in the wake of the tech bubble collapse. I moved 1500 miles for my next job. I didn't sit around writing letters to my Congressman begging for food or blaming NAFTA or Bush or anyone else. And I also had enough money saved up that I barely noticed the lack of a paycheck. I didn't even bother applying for unemployment benefits.

Anonymous said...

In the immortal words of Ronald Reagan, which I trot out every chance I get, "Vote with your Feet"