My debt’s bigger than yours (Good News Week 20/10/08: 3 1/2 Corners)

Banks are trying to psychologically manipulate people into applying for loans and credit cards they don’t really need. What? Banks being underhanded and cruel? I’ve never heard of such a thing. / What? Banks wanting you to take out a loan that you can’t really afford, just to bleed you dry through interest repayments? Surely they’d never stoop so low.

One of their latest letters reads, “You spineless weakling, you don’t have the BALLS to take out one of our loans, do ya? DO YA, PUNK?”

Another strategy is to send people a picture of a bunny, with the words “Take out a loan or Fluffy gets it.”

In the midst of a global financial crisis, the ANZ has been criticised for a mailout encouraging customers to take out a personal loan to pay for cars, holidays or “a plasma TV that’s bigger than your mates’”. The “penis extension loan” campaign begins next month.

A consumer law advocate said that the bank was engaging in “psychological warfare” with customers. The bank replied that he was just jealous because he didn’t have a plasma.

A consumer law advocate said that the bank was engaging in “psychological warfare” with customers, especially with their follow-up campaign, “Oh, so you’re too good for one of our loans are you?”

Customers are warned to treat the bank’s offer carefully. Not only may you not be able to afford the repayments on your TV, you’ll probably really piss off your mate with the smaller plasma.

Critics of the banks say that we’re currently in a financial crisis created by bad debt and unethical lending practices. But the banks have defended themselves, saying that that may be true, but that the critics wouldn’t feel so negative if they had a better car, a new wardrobe, or were on holiday in Hawaii.

Critics of the banks say that we’re currently in a financial crisis created by bad debt and unethical lending practices. But the banks have defended themselves, saying that there’s no way they’d be multibillionaires if they didn’t prey on the weak. / saying that, while there may have been some bad debts here and there, and some lending practises that weren’t 100% ethical, they’ve all, in their own small way, helped fund bank executives’ enormous retirement packages.

The banks have defended their actions, claiming that, although many people might be manipulated into taking out a loan they don’t need, it’s still much kinder than breaking into their homes, tying them up, and stealing all their valuables manually. / and stealing all their belongings the old fashioned way.

Of course there’s a global credit crisis happening! Have you seen the size of Wall Street’s plasma screens?

Of course if you and your mate both fall for the campaign, you could end up out-plasmaing each other till the end of time…

The global credit crunch is making money harder to borrow for banks. But that’s OK, they’ve already got a massive plasma.

Now I understand why all those Sub-Saharan African countries are in such enormous debt – must be all their plasma screens!

Don’t forget, borrowing for a brand new giant plasma is the best way to watch the global economy collapse due to lax lending practices.

Don’t worry if you’re poor! Your plasma screen could be the loan that tips the Aussie banking sector into freefall – and you’ll get to see it all in stunning high-resolution!

These days, if you’re not part of the credit crunch, you’re nobody.

But borrowing money for a holiday isn’t a bad idea. Preferably a long holiday, far from the grasp of unpaid debt… / out of the reach of ANZ junk mail. / a long holiday, far far away, and maybe a whole new identity.

Someone using junk mail to try to manipulate people to get things they don’t really need? Well, now I’ve heard everything.

Oh my God, junk mail! Quick! Call the financial regulators!

An ANZ Personal Loan is a great way to finance a new car, a holiday, a big plasma, or a bailout of the global financial market!

The ANZ claimed they did check people’s accounts before sending them offers. But one offer was received by a new Australian resident who had just opened an account. Quick – advertise now before someone else has a chance to get their bad debt!

The ANZ claimed they did check people’s accounts before sending them offers. They needed to make sure that the account-holders were soft targets. / were small and weak. / would be easily destroyed.

But they might as well get people to take out personal loans they can’t afford. After all, if they default, the bank can just sell the bad debt to George Bush.

George Bush has actually written back to the ANZ, asking if he can get a personal loan of 700 billion dollars. It’s easier than dealing with Congress.

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