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Ian McColgin
05-01-2015, 05:49 AM
[IMc - In the light of vile proposals like this, I don't get how Republicans can mouth the words "Thank you for your service" with a straight face. Since this is all in committee, there's still plenty of chance for mischief.]

Zach Carter
zach.carter@huffingtonpost.com

Democrats Defeat GOP Plan To Block Predatory Lending Protections For Soldiers

Posted: 04/30/2015 2:11 pm EDT Updated: 04/30/2015 4:59 pm EDT

WASHINGTON -- House Democrats successfully knocked down a GOP plan early Thursday morning that would have blocked predatory lending protections for American soldiers.

Republicans had slipped the deregulation measure into the National Defense Authorization Act -- a major bill that sets the military's funding levels. The bill would have imposed a one-year delay on new Department of Defense rules designed to shield military families from abusive terms on payday loans and other forms of expensive short-term credit. Politicians frequently seek to delay measures in order to buy time to marshall the votes needed to fully repeal them.

Soldiers make particularly good targets for payday lenders, in part because of the reliability of their military paychecks. The military has been combating the debt burdens that payday loans can create for soldiers since at least 2006, but lenders including some of the nation's largest big banks have tailored new items to exploit loopholes in the regulations. In response, the Pentagon finalized a new set of regulations in late 2014 to restore protections for military families. The American Bankers Association has lobbied against those rules, which are strongly supported by consumer groups like the Consumer Federation of America, Public Citizen, the National Consumer Law Center and the U.S. Public Interest Research Group.

But around 4 a.m. Thursday, the House Armed Services Committee approved an amendment authored by Rep. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) to strip out the GOP language to delay the new rules. Democrats voted unanimously in favor of the amendment, which passed 32 - 30 with support from five Republicans: Reps. Elise Stefanik (R-N.Y.), Chris Gibson (R-N.Y.), Frank LoBiondo (R-N.J.), Richard Nugent (R-Fla.) and Steve Russell (R-Okla.).

Consumer groups championed the vote, saying public pressure had prevented lawmakers from siding with banks over troops.

"Faced with a choice between the banks and the troops, members of Congress rushed to side with the banks," Public Citizen President Robert Weissman said in a statement. "But then something happened: The spotlight focused on their unconscionable effort to pay back campaign donors at the expense of the nation’s servicemen and women …. Even with a rigged system, the public interest can prevail over powerful industry interests, at least sometimes."

According to a 2014 study by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, interest rates on products targeting soldiers frequently soar to 300 percent or higher, far above the 36 percent interest rate cap imposed on payday lending to soldiers in 2006, thanks to loopholes in that cap. The study notes that these loans often cost soldiers thousands of dollars for very small advances. One family that took out a $2,600 loan ended up paying back $3,966.84 over the course of a year, according to the CFPB, while another borrower spent $1,428.28 to pay off a $485 loan in just six months.

"Unmanageable debt is difficult for any family struggling to balance their finances," Duckworth, an Iraq war veteran, said Wednesday. "In the military, the burden can affect security clearances and advancement. Unscrupulous debt collectors go after service members deployed overseas and who are unable to answer claims. Credit is destroyed and lives are disrupted."

The 30 Republicans who voted to delay the protections for soldiers were Reps. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), Rob Bishop (R-Utah), Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.), Mo Brooks (R-Ala.), Bradley Byrne (R-Ala.), Mike Coffman (R-Colo.), K. Michael Conaway (R-Texas), Paul Cook (R-Calif.), John Fleming (R-La.), J. Randy Forbes (R-Va.), Trent Franks (R-Ariz.), Sam Graves (R-Mo.), Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.), Joe Heck (R-Nev.), Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.), John Kline (R-Minn.), Steve Knight (R-Calif.), Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.), Tom MacArthur (R-N.J.), Martha McSally (R-Ariz.), Jeff Miller (R-Fla.), Mike Rogers (R-Ala.), Austin Scott (R-Ga.), Bill Shuster (R-Pa.), Michael Turner (R-Ohio), Jackie Walorski (R-Indiana), Brad Wenstrup (R-Ohio), Joe Wilson (R-S.C.), Robert Wittman (R-Va.) and Ryan Zinke (R-Mont.).

skuthorp
05-01-2015, 05:56 AM
And would I be correct in supposing the the military favour the GOP in their voting patterns?

Ian McColgin
05-01-2015, 06:16 AM
Yes. One of the great mysteries of voting against own best interest.

Many - at least a plurality - in the military are southerners who come with very conservative and militantly patriotic values. They often find Republican patriotic rhetoric congenial and blame Democrats for the suffering inflicted on them by Republican measures.

skuthorp
05-01-2015, 06:24 AM
And is "Many - at least a plurality - in the military are southerners" because there are fewer alternatives in the south?
From the limited evidence on this forum mayhap the limited and inaccurate education system has a part in their subsequently limited choices.

Kevin T
05-01-2015, 06:29 AM
And is "Many - at least a plurality - in the military are southerners" because there are fewer alternatives in the south? From the limited evidence on this forum mayhap the limited and inaccurate education system has a part in their subsequently limited choices.

That's part of the issue. It's called the Opportunity Draft; lack of opportunity makes military service an option, sometimes the only option other than jail or homelessness.

skuthorp
05-01-2015, 06:33 AM
Hmm…………..QED.

Ian McColgin
05-01-2015, 06:37 AM
There are many studies of military demographics leading to the realization that there are many factors. It's important to remember that the flower of the US Army officer corps before our Civil War were southerners - one reason why they thought they could win. Family, town, really tribal traditions play a huge role. So do economic and social opportunity. Or the chance to escape home restrictions for something different and adventurous - which may explain all those kids from Kansas in the Coast Guard! And so do old fashioned values of service to our nation.

Our military pay scales are a disgrace, with many families getting food stamps to survive. Might as well work for WallMart. And, returning to the OP, that's why pay day lenders have such a booming business at the larger bases. A base brings money to town in many ways. One of the more disgusting ways is predatory lending.

Reynard38
05-01-2015, 06:57 AM
Ian, thanks for posting this. The practice of predatory lending is disgusting, even more so when its purposely targets young members of the armed forces. That the republicans tried to block protections shows its always about the $$ when it comes to politics.

Yes it is true that many in the military vote republican. Almost all the military folks I work with are republicans. I do run into some occasionally that after experienceing what occurred in Iraq and Afghanistan have switched parties.

Now to the posts denigrating the south as a place with no opportunity and therefore a pool of applicicants for the armed services you are completely full of ****e. I have met many young men and women from the south that could have found employment elsewhere but instead chose to join. For many it's a family tradition, for others they felt a duty to their country in the wake of 9/11.

And to those of you from outside the U.S. making these comments you really need to back the **** up.

Reynard38
05-01-2015, 06:59 AM
Ian, thanks for posting this. The practice of predatory lending is disgusting, even more so when its purposely targets young members of the armed forces. That the republicans tried to block protections shows its always about the $$ when it comes to politics.

Yes it is true that many in the military vote republican. Almost all the military folks I work with are republicans. I do run into some occasionally that after experienceing what occurred in Iraq and Afghanistan have switched parties.

Now to the posts denigrating the south as a place with no opportunity and therefore a pool of applicicants for the armed services you are completely full of ****e. I have met many young men and women from the south that could have found employment elsewhere but instead chose to join. For many it's a family tradition, for others they felt a duty to their country in the wake of 9/11.

I am not saying they made a good career choice, that's a matter of opinion. But I certainly won't criticize thier choice to belittle them my saying they could not have done any better.

And to those of you from outside the U.S. making these comments you really need to back the **** up.

skuthorp
05-01-2015, 07:13 AM
Reynard, it doesn't take much reading both here and in the general press for 'those outside the US' to get that impression. But take heart, there are parts of Aus with a similar demographic.
Having had an American grandmother (Boston) and having spent a deal of my growing years with her my interest in the US, and it's politics, is long standing.

Keith Wilson
05-01-2015, 07:30 AM
An obvious question - if it's illegal to do it to soldiers, why shouldn't it be illegal for everybody?

Reynard is quite right that people do sometimes write surprisingly ignorant things about the American south. There are certainly cultural differences, good and bad, but for God's sake, it's not 1925 anymore!!

Ian McColgin
05-01-2015, 07:34 AM
Elizabeth Warren's working on predatory lending in general. As one can see from this vote on a much more limited population, it's a hard sell in Congress. DoD can administrativly limit business activities on base and that use military facilities, like how the pay day lenders had used what amounted to auto seizure of the pay check in a perversion of automatic deposit.

Kevin T
05-01-2015, 07:44 AM
Wow Reynard!! Take a chill pill, a bit sensitive this morning? Nobody is denigrating the south, as I said, it's part of the issue. The lack of opportunity is an issue for young people at every compass point across the U.S. of A. and at times the military has been known to "prey" upon testosterone filled young men raised on video games who sadly find that the reality is vastly different then what was promised.

As to why thinking individuals continue to vote against their own economic interests is completely baffling. As a currently furloughed member is fond of saying, and I'm paraphrasing here; "Why do thinking Republicans continue to support this chit?"

switters
05-01-2015, 09:30 AM
RE: predatory lending, Wonkette nailed this one.

RE: Opportunity draft, no evidence to support this. Enlisted members are better educated than their peers, from the heritage foundation. I know the heritage foundation is not a fave here in the bilge so I offer only the data they have in their article and not the conclusions, though I happen to agree with them on this issue. A family tradition of patriotism and military service runs strong in the south, and to denigrate that by insinuating they have no other choice is insulting. I agree that the pay sucks, but for those who make use of the GI Bill it is a pretty good trade off for four years. Family pay really sucks, there is a reason behind that, as the Sgt Major said to me, if the Corps wanted you to have a wife she would have come in your seabag. right or wrong the military does not work well with a bunch of married E-3s, and it is discouraged on purpose.

Contrary to popular perceptions, America's enlisted troops are not poorly educated. Previous Heritage Foundation studies found that enlisted troops were significantly more likely to have a high school education than their peers. This is still the case. Only 1.4 percent of enlisted recruits in 2007 had not graduated from high school or completed a high school equivalency degree, compared to 20.8 percent of men ages 18 to 24. America's soldiers are less likely than civilians to be high school dropouts.
The military requires at least 90 percent of enlisted recruits to have high school diplomas.[6] (http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2008/08/who-serves-in-the-us-military-the-demographics-of-enlisted-troops-and-officers#_ftn6) Most enlisted recruits do not have a college degree because they enlist before they would attend college. However, many recruits use the educational benefits offered by the military to attend college after they leave the armed forces.
More evidence of the quality of America's enlisted forces comes from the standardized Armed Forces Qualifying Test (AFQT) that the military administers to all recruits. Over two-thirds of enlisted recruits scored above the 50th percentile on the AFQT. The military tightly restricts how many recruits it accepts with scores below the 30th percentile, and only 2.3 percent of recruits in 2007 scored between the 21st and 30th percentiles (Category IVA; see Chart 3). The military does not accept any recruits in the bottom 20 percent.

Bobby of Tulsa
05-01-2015, 09:53 AM
If you ever served, the first thing you learn is among the ranks there is always someone who will lend you a dollar for two in return on pay day. These are the guys who know how to take advantage of there (buddies).

Ian McColgin
05-01-2015, 10:01 AM
In all armies since the beginning of armies there have been bilkos who prey on their mates through predatory gambeling, lending, or strange deals on everything from managing the enlisted men's club to loosing a bit of fuel. That's a problem but not the problem here, which is corporate abuse of military people by way of commercial scale predatory lending.

paulf
05-01-2015, 10:03 AM
I was 17 and a boot Marine. In San Diego guys would stand outside jewelry stores and tell young recruits, if they really loved their girl back home, they would buy her a diamond ring for low monthly payments with a small interest added.

Even at 17 I was having no part, some did though, and it stayed with them their whole enlistment. We made $98 a month.

For me, military service gave me a full collage education.

John of Phoenix
05-01-2015, 10:08 AM
"Faced with a choice between the banks and the troops, members of Congress rushed to side with the banks," Public Citizen President Robert Weissman said in a statement. "But then something happened: The spotlight focused on their unconscionable effort to pay back campaign donors at the expense of the nation’s servicemen and women …. Even with a rigged system, the public interest can prevail over powerful industry interests, at least sometimes."

"Sometimes." I guess that's the best we can hope for with the oligarchy in command.

Bankers wouldn't even try this **** if there were just a few of them doing time in the Big House.

slug
05-01-2015, 12:04 PM
RE: predatory lending, Wonkette nailed this one.

RE: Opportunity draft, no evidence to support this. Enlisted members are better educated than their peers, from the heritage foundation. I know the heritage foundation is not a fave here in the bilge so I offer only the data they have in their article and not the conclusions, though I happen to agree with them on this issue. A family tradition of patriotism and military service runs strong in the south, and to denigrate that by insinuating they have no other choice is insulting. I agree that the pay sucks, but for those who make use of the GI Bill it is a pretty good trade off for four years. Family pay really sucks, there is a reason behind that, as the Sgt Major said to me, if the Corps wanted you to have a wife she would have come in your seabag. right or wrong the military does not work well with a bunch of married E-3s, and it is discouraged on purpose.

Contrary to popular perceptions, America's enlisted troops are not poorly educated. Previous Heritage Foundation studies found that enlisted troops were significantly more likely to have a high school education than their peers. This is still the case. Only 1.4 percent of enlisted recruits in 2007 had not graduated from high school or completed a high school equivalency degree, compared to 20.8 percent of men ages 18 to 24. America's soldiers are less likely than civilians to be high school dropouts.
The military requires at least 90 percent of enlisted recruits to have high school diplomas.[6] (http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2008/08/who-serves-in-the-us-military-the-demographics-of-enlisted-troops-and-officers#_ftn6) Most enlisted recruits do not have a college degree because they enlist before they would attend college. However, many recruits use the educational benefits offered by the military to attend college after they leave the armed forces.
More evidence of the quality of America's enlisted forces comes from the standardized Armed Forces Qualifying Test (AFQT) that the military administers to all recruits. Over two-thirds of enlisted recruits scored above the 50th percentile on the AFQT. The military tightly restricts how many recruits it accepts with scores below the 30th percentile, and only 2.3 percent of recruits in 2007 scored between the 21st and 30th percentiles (Category IVA; see Chart 3). The military does not accept any recruits in the bottom 20 percent.





The test are simplified so that the military can recruite.

The current crop of Americans are some of the dumbest ever produced.

http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2015/02/18/us-millennials-come-up-short-in-global.html

"The ETS study compares millennials in 22 industrialized countries, including the United States, who took part in the Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies. "


Across the board, young Americans fared poorly compared to those in the other countries studied.

"While a higher proportion of U.S. millennials versus those in other countries had earned a college degree, those with a four-year degree in the United States still showed lower math skills than those with college degrees in any country studied but Poland and Spain."


"Even those with a master's or doctoral degree demonstrated lower numeracy skills than their counterparts in all but a few countries. The average U.S. math score for millennials with a postbaccalaureate degree, 308, was not only below the average for countries studied who are in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, but was below the average score for young adults with just a bachelor's degree in several countries, and near the score for top-performing students with less than a bachelor's degree in a few countries. "


"In the United States, 72 percent of young adults with a high school diploma did not meet minimum proficiency levels in numeracy "

" in the United States, native-born millennials showed a greater decline in skills from the 2003 to 2012 cohorts than did their immigrant peers. "

slug
05-01-2015, 12:06 PM
RE: predatory lending, Wonkette nailed this one.

RE: Opportunity draft, no evidence to support this. Enlisted members are better educated than their peers, from the heritage foundation. I know the heritage foundation is not a fave here in the bilge so I offer only the data they have in their article and not the conclusions, though I happen to agree with them on this issue. A family tradition of patriotism and military service runs strong in the south, and to denigrate that by insinuating they have no other choice is insulting. I agree that the pay sucks, but for those who make use of the GI Bill it is a pretty good trade off for four years. Family pay really sucks, there is a reason behind that, as the Sgt Major said to me, if the Corps wanted you to have a wife she would have come in your seabag. right or wrong the military does not work well with a bunch of married E-3s, and it is discouraged on purpose.

Contrary to popular perceptions, America's enlisted troops are not poorly educated. Previous Heritage Foundation studies found that enlisted troops were significantly more likely to have a high school education than their peers. This is still the case. Only 1.4 percent of enlisted recruits in 2007 had not graduated from high school or completed a high school equivalency degree, compared to 20.8 percent of men ages 18 to 24. America's soldiers are less likely than civilians to be high school dropouts.
The military requires at least 90 percent of enlisted recruits to have high school diplomas.[6] (http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2008/08/who-serves-in-the-us-military-the-demographics-of-enlisted-troops-and-officers#_ftn6) Most enlisted recruits do not have a college degree because they enlist before they would attend college. However, many recruits use the educational benefits offered by the military to attend college after they leave the armed forces.
More evidence of the quality of America's enlisted forces comes from the standardized Armed Forces Qualifying Test (AFQT) that the military administers to all recruits. Over two-thirds of enlisted recruits scored above the 50th percentile on the AFQT. The military tightly restricts how many recruits it accepts with scores below the 30th percentile, and only 2.3 percent of recruits in 2007 scored between the 21st and 30th percentiles (Category IVA; see Chart 3). The military does not accept any recruits in the bottom 20 percent.





The tests are simplified so that the military can recruit.

The current crop of Americans are some of the dumbest ever produced.

http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2015/02/18/us-millennials-come-up-short-in-global.html

"The ETS study compares millennials in 22 industrialized countries, including the United States, who took part in the Program for the International Assessment of Adult Competencies. "


Across the board, young Americans fared poorly compared to those in the other countries studied.

"While a higher proportion of U.S. millennials versus those in other countries had earned a college degree, those with a four-year degree in the United States still showed lower math skills than those with college degrees in any country studied but Poland and Spain."


"Even those with a master's or doctoral degree demonstrated lower numeracy skills than their counterparts in all but a few countries. The average U.S. math score for millennials with a postbaccalaureate degree, 308, was not only below the average for countries studied who are in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, but was below the average score for young adults with just a bachelor's degree in several countries, and near the score for top-performing students with less than a bachelor's degree in a few countries. "


"In the United States, 72 percent of young adults with a high school diploma did not meet minimum proficiency levels in numeracy "

" in the United States, native-born millennials showed a greater decline in skills from the 2003 to 2012 cohorts than did their immigrant peers. "

John of Phoenix
05-01-2015, 12:12 PM
"In the United States, 72 percent of young adults with a high school diploma did not meet minimum proficiency levels in numeracy "

" in the United States, native-born millennials showed a greater decline in skills from the 2003 to 2012 cohorts than did their immigrant peers. "reds will be thrilled. Their "War on Education" is bearing fruit.

Paul Pless
05-01-2015, 12:16 PM
For me, military service gave me a full collage education.soldier artist?

John Smith
05-01-2015, 12:28 PM
And is "Many - at least a plurality - in the military are southerners" because there are fewer alternatives in the south?
From the limited evidence on this forum mayhap the limited and inaccurate education system has a part in their subsequently limited choices.

I think it's just another example of accepted myths. They include "Republicans are better custodians of our money." and "Republicans are better custodians of our security." Neither is based on fact, just belief. Most who believe that, IMO, are also very religious. I think there's a connection.

Ian McColgin
05-01-2015, 12:59 PM
It's an aside from predatory lending but:

http://www.heritage.org/static/reportimages/E8F05D884C7E78E45A200DC953ED3854.gif

Waddie
05-01-2015, 01:52 PM
So let's outlaw payday loans. They are a disgrace.

Where will you refer the people, who have usually exhausted whatever other credit was available to them, who need these small loans?

Where do you send a person who is basically un-creditworthy to get a small loan?

The pawn shop? They've already been there. Nothing left to pawn.

BTW; Military pay is far better than it used to be, especially if you figure in the benefits. It's better than most civilian jobs. And a private's pay was never intended to support a family. My father, a career Marine, used to tell young Marines not to get married until they made sergeant (E5). Usually took about 4 years. So he was telling 18 year olds not to get married before age 22.

regards,
Waddie