It is about control... financial
Money, money, money... For years the brethren have counseled us, as members of the Church of Christ, to stay out of debt. President J. Ruben Clark, a member of the First Presidency, said it in this way in 1937:"Let us avoid debt as we would avoid a plague; where we are now in debt, let us get out of debt; if not today, then tomorrow.“Let us straitly and strictly live within our incomes, and save a little.“Let every head of every household see to it that he has on hand enough food and clothing, and, where possible, fuel also, for at least a year ahead. You of small means put your money in foodstuffs and wearing apparel, not in stocks and bonds; you of large means will think you know how to care for yourselves, but I may venture to suggest that you do not speculate. Let every head of every household aim to own his own home, free from mortgage. Let every man who has a garden spot, garden it; every man who owns a farm, farm it.” (Conference Report, April 1937, p. 26.)
Credit in the modern world has been presented as a necessity, something we can't live without. We need to monitor it, check our score, is it high enough? We are warned that not having a high enough credit score will make us less likely to be able to get a good interest rate. Most of us take this in without a second thought. We spend what we make and then put what we want on credit cards, home equity lines, or store credit. But what happens when the credit companies change the rules in the middle of the game? What happens when we have upheld our end of the bargain for months or years, and suddenly they change our interest rate (that was so low because of our credit score), change our payment date, or demand the debt be paid in full? We become slaves to fees, interest rate increases, and eventually we are left with no option but bankruptcy. We lose everything. I spent 15 years paying on a 30 year mortgage, and then when the economy tanked (another reason to stay out of debt) I was unable to make my payments. I went through the correct procedures to modify my mortgage with Wells Fargo Bank. The process was a nightmare, with their fax machine hanging up in the middle of transmissions, having to send hundreds of financial documents to the account representative, waiting for weeks for a response, and then being told that since we are in a new month I needed to send even more paperwork. After jumping through every hoop like a trained monkey, I was finally told that the modification was at the underwriters and we would know their decision in a few weeks. The next day I received a letter from Wells Fargo, via FedEx overnight, that explained that "since [I] have declined the offer for modification, we are proceeding with foreclosure." I had not even been offered a modification, and yet I was being told that I had declined? I called and asked my account representative what was going on and was informed that I would have to start the process all over again. Once again I jumped through their hoops, and when then the same thing happened when it went to underwriting, the same form letter, everything. In the end, I lost my home and had to move out of state to find work. Debt is slavery when one side can arbitrarily change the terms of the contract, lie, cheat, or even flat our steal, with no repercussions. I declared bankruptcy, and was told that I could get credit again within a couple of years, but I will never buy anything on credit again, and I will never have another credit card. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.