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Bank Robbin’ and Bill Payin’

By Rich_Maloof Jun 4, 2012 4:06PM

Photo: YinYang/Vetta/Getty ImagesBeing a bank robber ain’t what it used to be. What ever happened to sticking up a joint and riding out on horseback to a carefree life on the lam (barring the possibility of being hunted, jailed or shot)? Sorry, Sundance — the glory days are gone. Now banks are being robbed just so the bandits can pay their utility bills.

Crime is always up when economies are down. But as writer Cord Jefferson of Good points out, there’s been an especially depressing trend of people robbing banks just to stay out of debt. If you’re wondering how bad it’s gotten, apparently some are less afraid of law enforcement than of debt collectors. Half a century ago, the concern would have been having your face plastered around town on a Wanted poster; now people are more worried about a low credit score.

If you feel like you’re being held up by your cell-phone carrier, credit card company, and tax collector, maybe you’ll have some sympathy for the bankrupt bank robbers rounded up by Good, like the man from Mississippi who got away with just $1,600 and then ran around town paying his bills; or the 73-year-old who didn’t want to lose his house of 20 years; or the toothless woman who needed money for dentures. Saddest of all is Jefferson’s story about James Verone of North Carolina, who stuck up a bank teller for $1 and then sat down and waited to be arrested. Verone’s plan: get sent to jail, where the state would pay for the healthcare he couldn’t afford.

There will always be an assortment of knuckleheaded bank robbers out there, like the all-American who tried stick up a bank with two apple pies and the Star Wars fan who robbed a Toledo bank dressed as Darth Vader (and escaped on a bike). But there’s a line between those Darwin Award-seeking thieves and those driven by desperation to become something they’re not.

“Why is there never any money, Butch?” asks Etta Place in Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

“I swear, Et, I don’t know. I been working like a dog all my life and I can’t get a penny ahead.”

Photo: YinYang/Vetta/Getty Images

Tags: LifeNews
20Comments
Jun 5, 2012 12:06AM
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I guess, people take it on their own to obtain finanacial justice. For one thing, now for almost two decades, Banks who finance businesses, have been issueing low cost credit to corporations, who in turn, and to make more golden points with the bank clamp down salaries citing external labor rates competition. Plus, after the glut price hike on gas of 08 the oilopoly crunch, the banks not issueing any credit, so there are sitting on piles of cash. waiting for another segment on th eeconomy to put monies into. Meanwhile, since there is no credit, y no real estate appraising value, there is no credit, it is crunch time for the small guy. - Now to the macro view: If Mr. Obama, would have bail out the economy as oppossed to just the banking industry, we would have been the reciepients of the most competitve form of banking reform seen in decades. I am positive, that the amount of billions passed on to banks, amount to aprox. u$s 10k for each man, woman and child in the us. If taxpayers would have been the recipient for those monies.... banks would be competing for our businessess and offering services second to none. Unfortunately Mr. Obama, just did what Mr. Bush did when he had a superavit., take the handout to the financial world. Now there are sitting on it, and we have no economy. I thought we voted Mr. Obama for a change of venue. Shame on me.

Jun 4, 2012 11:20PM
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Funny how very few Americans cared to see how lack of economic opportunity and financial stability really affects human beings aspirations and hopes for a brighter future until it happens to them (guess the trickling doesn't run down very far anymore).  Anybody in America who was raised in poverty (which goes back several generations for some families), from the inner city to the mountains and everywhere in between, have one thing in common... despair and the need to pull a hustle.  Guess the middle is starting to catch on.
Jun 4, 2012 11:17PM
Jun 4, 2012 11:16PM
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Ask Barney Frank and his banking commitee  cronies how people got screwed because good ol Barney and the boys forced banks to cut the requirement for home loans, so ol barney could get re-elected. Standard Democrat crap.. step on the rich screw the poor, doesn't make a difference just win the next election.
Jun 4, 2012 11:01PM
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Hell the banks have been robbing the general public  for years but that does not make it right.  The last time bank robberies were tied to economics was the great depression and the era of Bonnie & Clyde, Ma Barker and Pretty Boy Floyd to name a few.  The problem was that although they were famous their lives were relatively short.  As I remember the longest crime spree of the big name gangs was less than 2 years.  I do find it interesting that no one wants to call this a depression the country is in but there are sure a lot of the same behaviors as the last one going on. 
Jun 4, 2012 10:59PM
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except, letsgo..the banks DIDN'T "squander it" like you said. They just lent it to idiots who didn't pau them back. These same idiots who are now stealing it.
Jun 4, 2012 10:53PM
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if u rob a bank with a gun its stealing ! if the bank  squanders it its called bad judgement and the people bail em out ...true crooks is the bank

Jun 4, 2012 10:38PM
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the only thing i hate to see is the hardworking low paid bank employees ,security guards trying to make an honest living doing their crappy repetitive jobs or customers get hurt or killed  during a robbery. otherwise take the sh*&, the fdic insures up to 250k per account and the gubberment will just print more!

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