The payday lenders must be scared. As if circulating their fake 18%-rate-cap petition and hiring out-of-state mercenaries to “block” South Dakota petition circulators isn’t enough, Lisa Furlong’s payday-lender front group is now circulating a very slick pamphlet urging people to “decline to sign” the real 36%-rate-cap petition.
The payday lenders have nothing to lose, so they make stuff up. Let’s count the insults, spin lines, and outright lies
- The flyer calls petition sponsor Steve Hildebrand “crazy.”
- I Google keywords from the “U.S. Bank” quote the flyer attributes to Hildebrand and get zero results. The flyer offers no source for the quote. I challenge Lisa Furlong to provide the original source of the quote or invite Hildebrand to come on line and confirm that he said it.
- The flyer tries to muddy the rhetorical waters by co-opting the word “phony,” which is a legitimate charge against the fake 18% rate cap and the best way for us to distinguish the real 36% measure from its payday-lending industry decoy. There is no way in which the 36% rate cap is “phony.” Hildebrand’s proposed initiated measure would cap interest rates and fees on payday loans at an annual rate of 36%. Period. No tricks, no exceptions, no applying that cap only to non-existent oral payday storefront loans the way the fake 18% petition does.
- The flyer claims the 36% will make it “impossible” for “many small businesses” in South Dakota to keep their doors open.
- If those small businesses are loan sharks, we should be as glad to see them close as we are to see other laws shut down whorehouses.
- The payday lenders who can’t survive charging people less than 36% are small businesses the same way McDonald’s is a small business. Payday lender CEOs Chuck Brennan and Rod Aycox are not small businessmen.
- The fakers opposing the real 36% rate cap have no respect for real South Dakota small businesses, as demonstrated by their efforts to sabotage Steve Hildebrand’s independent coffeeshop in Sioux Falls this summer.
- “Impossible” is an exaggeration: in response to the failed lawsuit payday lenders filed in June to delay the real 36%-rate-cap petition, Judge Kathleen Trandahl said the evidence the payday lenders submitted to back their claim that payday lenders have found it impossible to do business under rate caps in other states was “inconclusive or incomplete.” In other words, this pamphlet repeats a claim that the payday lenders know is false.
- The flyer claims that the real 36% rate cap is “crafted by big banks and out-of-state interests” while the fake 18% rate cap is “South Dakota’s own” ballot measure. The flyer offers no evidence that big banks or any other out-of-staters are the prime movers or even secondary backers of the 36% rate cap. Meanwhile, the fake 18% rate cap drive has relied on out-of-state petition mercenaries, out-of-state fake protesters, an out-of-state payday lending company to file suit against the state to block the 36% rate cap petition, and an out-of-state CEO flying from Atlanta to Sioux Falls to personally pressure South Dakotan Steve Hildebrand to drop his petition drive.
- The flyer claims that “The 18% petition places a stricter cap”—false! The fake 18% rate cap applies only to oral agreements and can be undone simply by the payday lender requiring a borrower to sign a piece of paper to get the loan… which is how they do business nowadays anyway, meaning the 18% cap does not impose any cap on current business practices. A cap that does nothing cannot be called “strict.”
- The flyer claims that “The 18% petition places a stricter cap on interest rates by more than double other petitions being circulated”—false! Assuming that “more than double” refers to the “strictness” and not the “interest rate,” and assuming Lisa Furlong’s fakers could make an accurate statement without suffering an allergic reaction, the best claim this sentence could make is, “The 18% petition calls for an interest rate cap that is exactly half that called for by the one other petition in circulation that addresses this issue.” There is no petition calling for any interest cap higher than 36% that would justify the flyer’s use of the phrase “more than double.” That claim is nonsense.
Of course, Furlong’s fakers aren’t worried about making sense. They just want their hired thugs to augment their harassment of South Dakotans circulating and signing the real 36% rate cap petition by throwing glossy flyers in their faces.
South Dakotans, the real 36% rate cap is about more than shutting down loan sharks. The payday lenders are making it about standing up against lies, thuggery, and sabotage of South Dakota’s ballot initiative process. Stand against that deception and abuse. Stand for South Dakota’s citizens and truth in elections. Go to Josiah’s Coffeehouse in Sioux Falls and sign the 36% petition. If you’re not in Sioux Falls, contact Reynold Nesiba at Cap The Rate SD to find out where you can find a 36% petition to sign and to circulate among your friends and neighbors.
And when the payday lenders’ thugs hand you their fake flyers, smile and ask for a handful to take to your friends. The more you take off their hands, the fewer they’ll have to hand to their next marks. Or just whip out your camera and see how many pictures you can take before those fakers run away.