Tag Archives: inflation

McInflation up the McAss

This is a true story. The facts have been verified by yours truly. There will be no histrionics or embellishment.

I know I shouldn’t eat at McDonald’s. It’s now been nine months since I went vegetarian. At some point, though, I figured an egg, a bit of butter, a slice of cheese and a biscuit wouldn’t be the end of the world. So I occasionally ate breakfast at McDonald’s. I try to limit my exposure to a few times a month when I’m running late and have nothing else to eat.

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Mini Eat My Ass – B of A edition

Bank America ATM ClosureMy first ever blog from the car using my iPod.

Bank of America is rumored to begin charging $5 a month for debit cards.

I’ve been warning about this for years. Step one is get you hooked and step two is to shove it up your ass.

So long B of A. Closing my account is going to feel great!

Update: Added picture and the following text.

Now that I’m home I can add a few additional details about the colonoscopy sponsored by Bank of America and other financial institutions across this great land of ours.

In Bank of America’s scheme, the account holder will be charged a $5 monthly fee if they use their debit card a single time in a given month. The fee is scheduled to begin early in 2012.

Other banks are joining in. Wells Fargo and Chase are “testing” $3 fees. I wonder what that means? A focus group of consumers to find out how much they like it? Doubtful.

Regions Financial plans a $4 fee starting next month. SunTrust is apparently already charging a $5 fee.

Tom’s Law #42
Let the banking customer beware.

Okay, that’s not really a law. Sorry. I lost my interest. I could fix it, but I’d have to charge a fee.

Other fees are a hippin’ and a hoppin’, too. The fees that some banks charge for “non-network” ATM usage will be going from $2.00 to $2.50 per transaction.

Some other fees I’ve heard about:

  • $1.00 – saying hello (friendly) to your banking representative
  • $42.00 – saying “fuck you” to your banking representative
  • $1.00/hour for parking in the lot or $10 for a 24-hour pass
  • $8.00 monthly surcharge for printed statements
  • $5.00 monthly surcharge for access to online banking
  • $2.00 for printed receipts
  • $5.00 for phone calls (first 15 minutes), $3 for each additional 15 minutes
  • 12 dozen Krispy Kreme donuts per parking lot use for non-profit car wash fund raising events
  • $3.00 to check account balance
  • $1.00 rental fee for pen usage when filling out deposit or withdrawal slips
  • $4.00 fee to check your ID when conducting transactions with a teller (non-robotic only)
  • One percent interest fee on all savings accounts
  • One percent deposit fee
  • Three percent transfer fee
  • Five percent withdrawal fee
  • $8.00 fee per money order
  • $25.00 fee per cashier’s check
  • $84.00 fee for insufficient funds transaction
  • $800 processing fee to fake signatures on loan foreclosures
  • $30 per incident to wear sunglasses inside a branch office
  • $7.99 to ask a bank employee the location of the bathroom
  • $10.00 to use the bathroom
  • $8.00 for toilet paper (optional)
  • $12.00 for soap to wash hands
  • $8.42 for water to use the soap
  • $4.00 for towel to dry hands
  • $20 fee for attempting to transfer money to WikiLeaks

That’s all I can think of right now. I wonder if they have any current openings for Fee Designer. I could go for a career change. B of A execs – call me! I’m cheap!

In late December [2010] it was announced that Bank of America had bought up more than 300 Internet domain names in a would-be attempt to preempt bad publicity that might be forthcoming in the anticipated WikiLeaks release. The domain names were such as BrianMoynihanBlows.com and BrianMoynihanSucks.com as well as similar names for other top executives of the bank. Nick Baumann of Mother Jones ridiculed this effort, saying: “If I owned stock in Bank of America, this would not give me confidence that the bank is prepared for whatever Julian Assange is planning to throw at it.”

Source: Wikipedia

Ha ha ha ha ha ha!

Right now, you’re probably asking, “Yeah, but what about the rainforest?” You ask, I deliver!

Rainforest Action Network Statement on Bank of America’s New Emissions Commitment

May 18, 2011SAN FRANCISCO (May 18, 2011)—Today, Bank of America announced a new greenhouse gas emissions reduction commitment covering its ‘operational’ emissions coming from the company’s global facilities. The announcement can be found here: http://mediaroom.bankofamerica.com/phoenix.zhtml?c=234503&p=irol-newsArticle&ID=1565219&highlight.

Amanda Starbuck, Energy and Finance Program Director at Rainforest Action Network, issued the following statement in response:

“While we welcome Bank of America’s continued acknowledgment that reducing greenhouse gas emission is critical to combating the climate crisis, the bank must move quickly to address the much larger carbon footprint coming from its role as a lead financier of the coal industry. RAN estimates that Bank of America’s financing climate footprint is to be one hundred times larger than the size of its operational carbon footprint.

Source: RAN.org

Thanks for the reminder to check up on all the B of A controversies. All publicity is good, right? You guys sure have that nailed.

So, what does an outfit like B of A teach us about something like the free market? The takeaway (for me at least) is that they are expert practitioners of the mythical win-win voluntary fee market transaction that many hold so dear. Ooops. Dear me. I meant free market, of course.

In this sort of transaction, one side says, “Yes, I’ll conduct business with you, but only if I can rake you for every penny you’ve got. I can fee you for anything. Naturally, you can’t fee me for jack shit, no matter how ineptly and rudely I do what I said I’d do but massively failed.”

If I treated my customers the way B of A treats theirs I’d have to live in a box. I could probably get one from B of A for a $12 fee.

It’s alright – I’m a blogger!

Group Shot

Heart Attack Grill in Chandler, AZ

It’s amazing how fast a crowd can form.

One moment the restaurant hustle and bustle was completely normal, then there was a wild shriek and everything went completely to hell.

A man had collapsed to the floor and a crowd formed around him instantly.

I leaped to my feet and pushed my way through the throng. “Excuse me! Make way, make way!” I said authoritatively. “Come on,” I extolled, “let me pass!

Breaking through, I saw that no one was even helping the man yet. Jesus Christ, I thought. This is gonna be grizzly.

I moved to get in closer but hands reached out and stopped me.

“It’s alright,” I said. “I’m a blogger!”

As the man lay there choking, I snapped off a few shots with my camera (always at the ready) and jotted down some notes in my handy little book. This is going to make an awesome post, I told myself.

Then some damn doctor showed up to help the man. Shit, I lamented, there goes the story. But it turned out it was a only a false alarm. The man had merely seen the menu and was reacting to the prices. Quite understandable, really.

Luckily I didn’t fall for it. What a lame post that would have been. Good thing I was able to avoid it.

Measuring my worth

Yesterday I experienced a sobering thought. It rattled me hard.

My current hourly wage is the same as what I made in 1986.

Fuck. Seriously. Why the fuck did that thought have to cross my brain? As if I didn’t have enough to think about already. Like all great thoughts, it has really stuck with me. I find myself thinking about it all the time.

1986. Gee. That was 24 years ago.

I mentioned this thought to a co-worker. She was like, “Hey. That’s a year before I was even born.”

It is hard to describe this feeling. Hopefully you can use your imagination.

As a math lover, I decided to celebrate this revelation like I do with all great thoughts … with a graph!

This graph is based on information I obtained using a web site called “Measuring Worth – Relative value of US Dollars.” If you’ve ever heard someone say that “$X amount in X year would be worth $Y amount in today’s dollars” then you already know what this web site does. The site uses six different methods to attempt to answer the question. It shows my 1986 wage compared to what it would be worth today using those six different computational methods.

Yes, like I often do, I omitted the data labels on the left side of the graph. This is out of shame and embarrassment over my current salary range. But I can express it like this: Based on the data I obtained from the Measuring Worth web site, my 1986 hourly wage would worth about 2.4 times what I make today.

In other words I have less than half the buying power that I had in 1986. The word “career” hardly applies. Of course some of the positive thinkers out there (shudder) would be happy to point out that at least I have a job. Hopefully they won’t attempt to express such a sentiment directly to my face.

That graph was so much fun I decided to celebrate with one more.

Some remarks about this graph:

  • 1983 = Cook at McDonald’s
  • 1984 to 1999 = 16 year career at a major company where I worked my way up to management (yes, I used to be somebody)
  • 2000 = Left major company to pursue a more enjoyable job as computer programmer (with cut in pay)
  • 2001 = Moved to the small city to get out of the rat race (with major cut in pay)
  • 2005 to present = Current employer

Well, I think that’s about it. I can’t think of much else to say, except I sure am in the mood to go to work now. Up ahead today may very well be the most special ass fucking of the year, but more about that later after I see how it all goes down. I have little doubt what happens at work today will live up to my wildest expectations and will no doubt completely justify my low rate of pay. Wish me luck!