Don McNay may have penned the most hypocritical article ever on payday lending at HuffPo, an article truly worthy of the Daily Planet on BizarroWorld.

Get this: McNay says that his father – a bookie and professional gambler – looked down on loan sharks. McNay says, “He considered bookmaking a gentleman’s profession”. Let me repeat – McNay said his criminal father considered his occupation to be a gentleman’s profession. This is the same Don McNay who thinks lotteries are great – the same lotteries that act as a regressive tax on the poorest of the poor.

From atop this moral high ground, McNay then claims payday lending is legalized loan sharking.

Let me just tease this out a bit.

The son of a criminal – a criminal who broke the law in running numbers; who took advantage of people’s addiction to gambling; took money from them; earned a rake; and likely returned very little in the way of winnings to these addicts (since most gambles lose) – thinks a legal method of obtaining credit – usually for emergencies — is “sticking it to the poor”.

Now what happened, I wonder, when one of Criminal McNay’s bettors made a bet on credit, lost and didn’t pay up? Do you think he was sent to a collection agency? Or maybe, just maybe, he had his kneecap broken? And what about those actual loan sharks? I suspect if you didn’t pay up you ended up with broken bones, or worse.

So again – just so I’m clear – this son of a criminal thinks that payday lending is bad?

What McNay doesn’t want to admit is that people are not required to go to a payday lender when they need credit. They have multiple options across a range of costs, and more importantly, risks. McNay also doesn’t realize that 94% of all loans are repaid on time and those that don’t are merely sent to collection agencies. Patrons do not fear for their lives.

McNay – the son of a criminal – “suspects that if you let everyone vote on the issue, payday lenders will go away quickly”. This assertion misses an important point. Most people don’t understand, don’t use, and never will need a payday loan. Yet somehow McNay thinks those people should vote on whether or not other people should be allowed to have a CHOICE. McNay apparently doesn’t want people to have choices.

Further, if people were actually given facts and context, I suspect they would vote IN FAVOR of payday lending.

McNay further suggests that payday lending ‘victims” have a poster child who would represent all those people who are taken advantage of. What a great idea! I just wonder if he has ever bothered to ask if there is a poster child for the 12 million Americans who find payday loans to have saved them in a time of need. Because there are a lot more Americans who like and continue to use the product that McNay has bothered to research.

So, again, just so I’m clear — Don McNay thinks his father – a criminal, would “be happier if he were in a world where payday lenders did not exist”.

I think I would be happier, as would the 88% of payday borrowers who report they are satisfied with the product and return to it because it helps them, if Don McNay stopped trying to make decisions for other people. Nobody tried to put his father out of business by condescending to his clients, after all. I guess if you run a criminal enterprise you get a pass.

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