Could a Couple Sue MasterBank and Satan for Making Them Broke and Ignorant?

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This obvious satire shows what the next waive of "McDonalds type" law suits could look like, in post-responsibility America. Jon Hanson, the author of "Good Debt, Bad Debt" gives his take on the next potential wave of silly lawsuits.

Couple Sues MasterBank and Satan for Making Them Broke and Ignorant. Will Millions of Americans Join Them?

“Can comedy and satire help teach personal responsibility?” asks Jon Hanson, author of the new book, Good Debt, Bad Debt (Penguin-Portfolio January 2005). Are American parents and educators being “out marketed” by Madison Avenue and the Merchants of Debt? (Say Yes.) Hanson’s book uses personal stories, cartoons, wit, incontrovertible arguments, and fun to teach discipline, deferral, and discernment. USA Today and other news outlets featured Hanson’s quote, “Credit cards are the crack cocaine of the credit industry.” Hanson says, “He is not actually accusing the credit card companies of pushing drugs, just something close to it.” Hanson also uses audio humor to convey his message such as his 2-minute (mp3) horse race of emotions, “Debt Ridden Downs,” listen here

After the lawsuit suing McDonalds for allegedly making people fat, Hanson wondered (for fun and educational emphasis) what a story would sound like if a couple strung-out on credit cards sued a major credit provider. Hanson says, “Sometimes stretching a point to the ridiculous helps illustrate it the best.” Perhaps one day we will see a story not to far from this:

In what could be a landmark case, a California couple today sued MasterBank and the much-maligned “Satan” for making them, in their attorneys words,” broke, and ignorant.” Joe Debtor and his wife, Ima, both 37, allege in their legal complaint that they were of average earning ability and intelligence before a steady flow of MasterBank’s irresistible credit card offers made them “ruin their lives.”

“After several years of promiscuous spending,” Mr. Debtor said, "I became the broke and ignorant person I am today."

According to the complaint, the Debtor’s attempted on several occasions to quit “using” but were unable to do so. Their complaint alleges MasterBank would insert offers in the bills for other irresistible trinkets and baubles.

“All we wanted to do was open the bill and make our minimum payment, but offers for CD storage racks and country music only compounded the problem. With timely minimum payments, in 33 short years we would have had them off our backs.” The complaint further alleges Satan is head of MasterBank’s marketing department.

While Joe and Ima Debtor’s legal action is not the first of its kind, some believe that it could become a major class-action lawsuit if millions of broke and ignorant Americans are able to hold MasterBank and Satan (aka the Debt Devil) responsible for their condition.

MasterBank's spokesperson, Mia Fico, said that the company would argue that Mr. and Mrs. Debtor were well on their way to being both broke and ignorant years before they began using MasterBank credit cards. Additionally, heredity is against Mr. Debtor. While his parents and grandparents did not have MasterBank Credit Cards, they stayed broke by owing money to pawnshops and payments to Fingerhut.

A spokes-minion for Satan said that the underworld figure will most likely employ the so-called "self-responsibility defense.” In this archaic theory of law, a citizen (aka “victim” today) would be held responsible for his or her own actions. The plaintiffs’ attorneys scoffed at the simple-minded strategy noting, “We will have an LA jury.”

Jon Hanson, author of "Good Debt, Bad Debt" and spokesperson for The National Debtabetes™ Foundation, is expected to testify as an expert for Satan, firming up his claim that the Debtors have simply made personal choices. Hanson, a Southern Baptist, noted he found it “really hard” to testify for Satan, but when the devil is right, you have to give him his due.

“I have done my part.” said Satan, “Personal savings are near zero and people are refinancing to transfer ill-conceived consumer debt to their homes at a breathless pace. But most of the serial-refinancers return to me within a year or so, even deeper in debt. Hanson will help a few, but I have many followers. I have been doing this for years.” Satan first read Good Debt, Bad Debt on the short flight from Newark to Hades, or was it on the return trip? “I always get those two mixed up,” said Satan.


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