Oh boy! I have an excuse to do one of my favorite things – write angry letters to my representatives in congress!
All righty, here's why I'm so pissed off: I've been trying to get a private student loan through Wells Fargo for living expenses – about $5000 to last me until May 2010. Not that much in the grand scheme of a Big Four bank. The loan was preapproved, and we moved on to the next step: signatures and paper work. As I am currently unemployed (aside from being a full-time student, of course), I needed my father to act as cosigner. However, because my father is retired and cannot provide a pay stub or proof of self-employment, they want him to mail them documentation that totals nearly 100 pages, in addition to other paperwork with very specific, often contradictory directions. First they want it faxed, then they want it mailed, now they want us electronically sign something – ooops, nevermind, now we have to mail them a hard copy. It's almost as if they're just screwing with us for fun. It's impossible to get a straight answer out of anyone, as they continue to fudge paperwork, 'lose' things, and just behave like assholes in general. And, man, do they hate it when you call them up and ask questions. You'd think you were asking them to wax your dog's asshole and let you call them 'Lady Sugartits.'
Anyway, the reason this upsets me so much: on October 28, 2008, Wells Fargo received $25BIL from the United States government as part of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act, with a possible additional $13.7BIL to come. The ease with which Wells Fargo was able to secure this massive loan from the government is laughable. I may be unemployed now, but I've held a few jobs in my time, so I think it's fair for me to be a little irritated that a percentage of my tax dollars went to bailing out these insanely rude douche bags, who repay the people who are keeping them in business with a huge middle finger.
How did this happen? Why are these companies allowed to bring our country to the brink of financial ruin and suffer no consequences?
I'm not going to get my loan – which isn't the end of the world. I will survive. However, I can't be the only person going through this. There has to be someone out there who is unable to attend school because of the impossibility of acquiring loans. Considering job availability, the decreasing worth of the dollar, and the continuous rise in tuition costs, I'm guessing that this is not an uncommon problem.
So, Sen. Richard Durbin [D-IL], Sen. Roland Burris [D-IL], and Rep. Mike Quigley [D-IL5] are all getting a letter from me, and I'll probably write one for my parents to send to their reps in Iowa.
Also, interesting: Okay, I haven't voted since I moved to Chicago, so it's no surprise I didn't know this, but apparently Rahm Emmanuel preceded Mike Quigley as the congressional representative for my district. Coolio.
Update: According to The Consumerist, Wells Fargo has foreclosed on a shelter for abandoned animals in Rhode Island, refuses to allow the owner access to care for the animals, and is basically leaving the animals to fend for themselves. Witnesses have reported that the animals are not being fed or watered properly; among those witnesses is the animal cruelty officer of the RISPCA.