H&R Block Inc., the tax preparation company that has frozen DM raises for two years in a row because of "tough financial times", spent $500,000 in the 2Q of 2010 to lobby the US government to create a consumer financial protection agency and other issues.
"Ha! Hahahahahahaha! Oh, that's f--king funny!!," said every person that ever got a 35.99% APR Refund Anticipation Loan from H&R Block. "Haha! Oh, that's a pisser.
According to H&R Block's filings, the half-million dollars was spent, "... to convince the Federal Government to put into place a consumer financial protection agency, to educate the public on predatory lenders, and their manipulative schemes to sell finance products at near-usury-level interest rates to those who can least afford it."
In order to achieve this goal, H&R Block reported that the money financed, "... lunches and dinners with key legislators, as well as expert testimony, research studies, alcohol, top-notch hookers, nose candy and massages from supple young Greek men. (A debauchery buffet known to insiders as the "Spitzer Weekend.)
The criminal usury limitations (N.J.S.A. 2C:21-19) apply to all loans subject to State of New Jersey law. The maximum permissible rate is 50% for corporations and 30% for non-corporate borrowers.
H&R Block's Refund Anticipation Loan carries a 35.99% APR.
Did you know?
That New Jersey's criminal usury law is over three hundred years old, dating from Colonial days, and was enacted to eliminate the exploitation of the poor by high-interest loansharks?
Again, H&R Block's Refund Anticipation Loan carries a 35.99% APR.
"Especially massages from supple young Greek men. Yummy."
Perhaps unfortunately for Block, their lobbying worked: President Obama accounced that the government was creating a department of Consumer Financial Protection.
"Today, as the first act of a governmental bureau charged with ensuring the people's safety against fiscal inpropriety," Obama said, "We are outlawing H&R Block, and all of it's sickeningly oppressive schemes to separate hard-working citizens from their money."
"This is a disappointing turn of events for us," someone in Block's Legal department told H&R Block's CEO to say, while he updated his LinkedIn profile. "Usually when we blow a bunch of money on something stupid, its drain on our financial health can be amortized over a fiscal year."
In other news, H&R Block's stock ($0.000001, -$11.43, -87.9%) can now officially be used to wipe one's ass without damaging shareholders' net worth. Mazel-tov.