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From The Socialist newspaper, 4 August 2010

How the banks rip us off

CON-DEM Business Secretary Vince Cable told journalists he thinks banks are "ripping off" taxpaying customers with unfair charges and cynically using massive bail-out packages to pay their top speculators ridiculous bonuses out of the public purse.

The BBC considers this news. The rest of us are already painfully aware that the banks have had the taxpaying public, and successive pro-capitalist governments, over a barrel for some considerable time.

As a low-paid, taxpaying worker employed by one of the big bailed-out banks currently ripping off the country, I speak to customers daily who are being saddled with spiralling debt that pushes them further and further into poverty.

The bank is very well aware that its irresponsible speculation and near-collapse has contributed to this.

This corporation pays me 7 an hour to enforce its exploitative charges system, threatening me with disciplinary action if I refuse to do so.

The bank is clawing back credit from financially struggling customers to whom it previously lent with extreme irresponsibility.

It is levying impossible charges on them to raise enough capital to buy back the shares it sold to the government, so it can speculate further.

It knows it can do this because it has the backing of the courts. They previously ruled that such unethical charges are in fact legal and above board, and because this pro-capitalist government is so in thrall to the financial markets, it is powerless to do anything to stop it.

The only answer to this sorry state of affairs is the genuine nationalisation of the banks, democratically controlled by the workers, as part of a planned socialist economy based on the needs of the masses and not the profits of greed-driven capitalists.

By a bank worker

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