Evil Master Card Jr.

While in class a couple of days ago, I overheard a few college classmates complaining about their credit card bills.

“Freaking evil credit card companies,” says one person, “I’m riddled in debt because of them.”

“Yeah I totally know what you mean, I keep paying my bill but it’s just not going down.” says the other.

Two things I’ve learned from this conversation:

  1. Constantly eavesdropping on people is bad for your blood pressure level.
  2. Apparently, credit cards company can magically force you to spend money.

It’s no secret that credit cards generally come with a hefty interest rate. It’s also true that a credit card debt can be significantly harder to pay off than other types of loan. But blaming a credit card company for the debt you incurred and calling them evil is just plain stupid.

Now, don’t get me wrong, credit card companies are hardly saints; there are plenty of them out there with unscrupulous practices. But even with all the negative aspect of a credit card, when was the last time you saw a credit card pull out a gun and force it’s owner to use it?

If you have a credit card debt, you most likely have a problem. One of the first step in fixing a problem is to examine the cause of the problem.

When I was in debt, the reason for the debt was fairly obvious.

No body forced me to buy the mountains of Japanese comic books, computer hardware, and automotive parts. Sure, the credit card made it easier for me to spend money I didn’t have — but the reason why I spent frivolously was because I was a complete moron.

That’s all there was to it. There was no mystical force from New Jersey, telepathically forcing me to spend.

Accepting personal responsibility for the financial choices you make can go a long way. We’ve all screwed up now and then, the important thing is to realize how the screw-up happened and what can be done about it.

If at the end, you realize that a credit card is just not the right financial product for you (because it makes it too easy for you to spend) — great! Don’t use it!

It’s as simple as that.

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