Shifting burdens more fair
Was it the banker’s blog site that provided the information for Andrew Martin’s front-page article “Sterling credit? That may not help”? [May 19] It wasn’t until the last small, interior-page portion of the article that a consumer advocate was permitted to speak the obvious — banks have been as irresponsible managing the credit-card industry as they have been in selling mortgage derivatives.
The most dire threats from the banks about credit-card rate increases will be mitigated by their competition for the remaining good and much more responsible current customers. The subsidy that responsible card owners have received in the past from penalties burdening those card-users who were less responsible, less informed or perhaps poorer was morally repugnant then, as it is now.
It’s time for a change and it’s time for an article in The Seattle Times that gives mention to this side of the issue.
— Jim Douma, Edmonds
Gun provision reveals GOP priorities
It has not been a good year for Republicans, from losing the election to having longtime members of the party desert. But they rallied and eked out a victory on an issue they surely hope will show what the party stands for, and how it is in fact relevant to the daily lives of average Americans: allowing us to carry loaded guns into national parks [“Congress may hand gun-rights advocates a victory,” News, May 20).
“Timing is everything in politics,” crowed the Republican sponsor of the measure, Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla. Indeed it is. Just when we thought the “Party of No” could do themselves no more damage, they take a bill that is relevant to the lives of millions of Americans — regulating the sky-high interest rates and fees credit-card companies assess on consumers — and add an amendment at the direction of the gun lobby to which they are beholden. They know that President Obama will likely hold his nose and sign the bill with their amendment rather than veto the much-needed credit-card reform that is the main topic of the bill.
I hope voters remember Republican priorities at the ballot box.
— Mike Kelly, Bainbridge Island