The other day I sat next to an American woman at lunch. It was quite a lavish lunch and I made some kind of lame, ‘Cuh! Recession, what recession?’ joke.
We got talking about the US economy and she told me something that, for me, completely encapsulated the essence of the problem of years of cheap, easy credit: Her family dog had a credit card.
The company had apparently sent an application to the dog by mistake, they think this was because its name was on some pet insurance. And so, as a joke, her dad had applied in its name to get a card. The bank had sent the card by return of post and made neither made checks, nor required any further ID.
Sorry about that: I’ve only been blogging two days and already I’m off message. But at least we were eating when we had the conversation.