In a since-deleted tweet, Chase shared a #MondayMotivation tip that was soon criticized as an attack against lower-income Americans. The tweet, featuring a fictional conversation between a person and their bank account, recommends that those with low account balances follow money-saving tips such as eating the food they already have on hand and not taking taxi cabs.
The tweet soon earned the ire of Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), who responded by mimicking the original tweet’s structure. Warren pointed out that if bank account balances are low, then the $25 billion taxpayer-funded bailouts following the 2008 financial crisis is to blame. She also took employers to task for not paying living wages, and noted that economists have agreed that the high costs of living and “stagnant wages” are the primary reasons why the majority of Americans have little––if any––money saved up.
.@Chase: why aren’t customers saving money?
Taxpayers: we lost our jobs/homes/savings but gave you a $25b bailout
Workers: employers don’t pay living wages
Economists: rising costs + stagnant wages = 0 savings
Chase: guess we’ll never know
— Elizabeth Warren (@SenWarren) April 29, 2019
Warren’s tweet soon went viral, and social media users soon chimed in with criticisms of their own.
How about "unemployment is down!" Yeah, because we're all working two jobs to cover the bare necessities.
And how about the banks stop charging overdraft fees, $billion+ a year they steal from the poor, $35 at a time.
I'm too angry to compose a more clever response than this.
— automatonymous (@automatonamous) April 29, 2019
I'll never understand why we didn't bail out homeowners. Had we made mortgage payments for people they could have stayed in their homes and the banks would have stayed solvent at the same time. Instead we bailed out the banks and allowed all those people to lose their homes.
— Jim Galloy (@chicagojimmy) April 29, 2019
Making fun of their lower income customers. What a great bank to never ever deal with.
— Benjamin Griffin (@BnbeAir) April 29, 2019
Crash the economy, bail out execs, loan shark a bunch of people, then make fun of the broke ones. That long con. 🤣✊🏿 #SCAM
— Zachary Varón (@Zach5280) April 30, 2019
Checked @Chase to read responses and weigh in, only to find they been badly ratioed and had deleted the offending post. The problem, however, remains with upper levels of management who can’t relate to retail customers’ lives. #IncomeInequality and the delusions of the 1%ers.
— Maureen Sheridan (@mcscajun) April 29, 2019
Warren has made her name on taking on big banks and corporate malpractice, and her presidential platform addresses ways of balancing power and economy.
Warren has proposed holding accountable corporations that do not pay federal corporate income taxes on their profits:
“Year after year, some of the biggest corporations in the country make huge profits, but pay zero federal corporate income taxes on those profits. That isn’t right. My Real Corporate Profits Tax will raise over a trillion dollars and make sure the biggest corporations pay their fair share.”
She has also pushed for the Corporate Executive Accountability Act:
“Our justice system should ensure that if you cheat working Americans, you’ll go to jail. It’s time to reform our laws to make sure that corporate executives are held accountable for overseeing massive scams.”
She has also devised a housing plan that would “begin closing the racial wealth gap”…
“Every American deserves a safe and affordable place to live. My plan makes a historic investment in housing that would bring down rents by 10%, create 1.5 million new jobs, and begin closing the racial wealth gap.”
…has introduced a plan that would effectively cancel the majority of student loan debt and make higher education accessible to all…
“We should treat higher education like our public school system – free and accessible to all Americans. That’s why I’m calling for something truly transformational – the cancellation of up to $50,000 in student loan debt for 42 million Americans and free universal college for everyone.”
…and has proposed an “ultra-millionaire” tax that would benefit an ever-shrinking middle class:
“I’m proposing something brand new – a tax on the wealth of the richest Americans. My Ultra-Millionaire Tax asks the richest 0.1% of Americans to pay their fair share, raising nearly $3 trillion that we can use to rebuild the middle class.”
Chase eventually deleted the tweet, and posted an apology that thanked Twitter users for their “feedback.”
— Chase (@Chase) April 29, 2019
The reasons why so many people have so little in savings are a lot more complicated than them simply not being mindful of their spending habits, but social media users are bound to keep a closer eye on the financial institution’s #MondayMotivation messages from now on.