We support reforms to the financial marketplace that protect consumers from unscrupulous banks and lenders.

By Consumers Union on Thursday, March 25th, 2010

The NY Times has a fantastic profile on Liz Warren.

Ms. Warren has two roles here: officially, as head of Congressional oversight for the Troubled Asset Relief Program, and unofficially, as chief conceiver of and booster for a new consumer financial protection agency. Fusing those projects and her academic work, she has become the most prominent consumer advocate in years.

It is that push for a consumer protection agency, the CFPA, that needs a huge ground swell of grassroots support in the upcoming weeks. The lending industry is spending $1.4 million dollars a day to stop protections for consumers. Or as Ms. Warren puts it:

“This is America’s middle class,” she recently said on “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart.” “We’ve hacked at it and pulled at it and chipped at it for 30 years now, and now there’s no more to do. We fix this problem going forward, or the game really is over.”

The financial bill reform before the Senate right now will:

Curb the bank gambling: Limit the bets that banks can make, including the private side-bets that are not even reported.

No more bailouts: No bank should ever again be bailed out by taxpayers, so make sure no bank is “too big to fail.”

Stop the legalese: Require mortgages, loan contracts and credit card terms be written simply and clearly so you don’t need to be a lawyer to understand your rights and responsibilities.

End the ‘quick profit’ mentality: Pay brokers and bankers based on the long-term performance and quality of the loans they make. End ‘keep the fee, pass on the risk.’ Require bonuses to be linked to long term gains, not short term booked profit.

Reduce debt: Make sure minimum loan payments cover some principal as well as interest, so people can pay down their debts.

Get tough on cheaters: Don’t leave consumer protection in the hands of those who failed to do it.

Stand up to the Big Banks and Wall Street with Liz Warren by taking action and telling us your story. How did devious business practices drain your retirement, sell you a bad mortgage or car loan that wasn’t what they promised?

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