In the article on the Smartmoney.com website called: What Your Credit Card Won’t Let You Buy, the article makes the following statement:
To the surprise of consumers, major credit card companies are making decisions about what they can and can’t buy with their credit cards. What’s off-limits? Legal purchases like gambling chips and donations to at least one controversial non-profit organization; in some cases, buying p.0.rn.0.s is also restricted, and so, increasingly, is medical p.0.t.
I’ll be honest, I’m not 1005 sure how I feel about credit card companies arbitrarily deciding that they will let the consumer purchase or not. After all, it’s has a bit of the big brother flavor that we all hate but seem to experience more and more in our lives. That said, credit offered by credit card companies is not money or earnings gained by the credit card user, so why not? We live in a capitalistic country so if one company doesn’t do something, usually another companies tries to compete in that niche if it is profitable.
So now that we’ve established that we really don’t have the rights to the money offered by the credit card companies, let’s use an example to make better sense of borrowing money on credit. Let’s say you have a friend that asks you for money to help buy a car, then later you learn that he didn’t buy the car but instead went out and bought p.0.rn online. Now a month later he comes back to you and asks for more money for a car because he needs it for work. This time you tell him that you’ll loan him the money, but that the money must be used to buy the car. Now what if he again goes out and buys more p0rn online? Wouldn’t you want the money that he used to be used for the reason that you lent him the money? Wouldn’t you want him to use the money you lent him for a beneficial use versus repeatedly being use for something addictive or that would make the chances unlikely that you would be able to collect the money that you lent?
IMHO, the bottom line is that credit card company is offering you a service. They are not giving you money away for free and they want to make a profit on their service. If they couldn’t be profitable, they would soon go out of business. So since it is their business, I think they should be able to determine how the money is spent.
I guess in a world where the law says that you must wear a seat belt, I don’t really see the credit card company’s restrictions as being much of a rights violation.
The credit card argue that they are protecting themselves from the federal government coming back and punishing the credit card companies for the purchases that their clients make. Based on the attitude of the government towards this industry, they actually may have a valid point here.
What if the restrictions in place from certain credit card (mainly American Express), help us to curve our additions? Perhaps such restrictions would even enabling us to preserve our financial state of well-being, in addition to making it harder to purchase our addictions? Perhaps this is really a win-win in disguise? However I have to wonder what is next? Cigarettes, alcohol, firearms, certain foods?
Ways Around the Credit Card Company’s Policy.
The simplest way around this problems is to use your credit card company’s card to purchase cash. After it is cash, they can no longer track what the money is being used for.
With so many people in the financial community complaining about credit card companies, what do you think about this relatively unknown restriction on the use of credit cards?
I’m looking forward to your comments,