< meta name="DC.Date.Valid.End" content="20050825"> Amendment Nine: Did You Say Bankruptcy Reform?

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Did You Say Bankruptcy Reform?

The LA Times reports this on 11/8: with a Bush win, business lobbyists sure are licking their chops now! The article gives an overview of pro-business legislation: tax reform, social security reform, tort reform... those were the headliners. Deep in the article though is a paragraph about banks and credit card companies seeking bankruptcy reform. I realize this isn't the most glamorous topic in the world, but for me its a livelihood so that caught my eye. In a slight panic, I talked to some lobbyist friends of mine who reassured me the banks were looking for individual bankruptcy reform, not business reorganization reform. In other words, the banks want to steer more people into 13 and away from 7 (big state's rights problems, or so I hear). Here's the interesting point though, the lobbyist also mentioned to me that there would likely be some proposals to make 11 a little more debtor friendly. Now, that would really piss me off for two reasons: A) It will be harder for me to make money then and B) it just isn't fair! They want to make it easier on businesses to get in and out of 11 but make it harder for people to do the same in 7. They want management, who runs a multi-billion dollar company into the ground, to retain more control of the reorganized company but a person who is sunk because of medical bills and an unavoidable tragedy to have less control over their wages. I thought corporations were treated "as people" under our law, not as super-people. This is ridiculous and I hope (again for at least on selfish reason, I confess) that the Democrats get their act together. Make debt relief a real issue and you'll find some surprising allies in your fight.