Time For Ron Washington to Stop Shilling For Ace Cash Express

Categories: Biz, Sports

Ron_Washington_thumbsup_Rangers_facebook.jpg
If you watch a Rangers game on TV for more than about five minutes, you're bound to encounter manager Ron Washington telling you wonderful things about Ace Cash Express. If you can ignore the glare from Washington's shiny pate -- he often appears sans baseball cap, even though he is a man who benefits greatly from having a head covering -- you'll learn that Ace is the place to go when you're down on your luck. The compassionate employees there take care of you and can quickly get you the cash you need to feed your children after you spent your last dime on your ailing grandmother's emergency gall bladder surgery, or something like that.

But that's not really how things play out in the real world. The payday lending industry is built to profit on the backs of the poor and financially naive. A borrower takes out a loan and often, whether because they shouldn't have been given a loan in the first place or because of usurious interest rates, they are unable to pay it back. So they take out a loan from another lender to pay back the first. The vicious cycle has been well-documented.

Why then does Washington, whose salary is somewhere in the $1 million range, tell fans to use a business with such a distasteful business model? Over on his blog, CitySquare's Gerald Britt wonders the same thing. Last week, he wrote a letter to Washington, owner Nolan Ryan, and general manager Jon Daniels questioning the practice.

He recounts one CitySquare client who took out a $300 loan to buy school supplies and, after she couldn't repay the loan in two weeks, wound up owing $900. A city ordinance passed last year aimed to put an end to the industry's most egregious practices, and there is a push for stronger rules on a state level, but that doesn't change the fact that the business is, by its very nature, predatory.

"(T)here are those of us, who cringe every time we see these (Ace) commercials during a game broadcast, who refuse to believe that neither he nor the Texas Ranger organization are aware of their negative impact of these businesses on individuals and whole communities," Britt writes.

Britt rattles off some stats: there are more payday lenders and auto title loan businesses in Texas than McDonald's and Burger Kings combined. On one two-mile stretch of Camp Wisdom Road, there are more than 20 of those lenders.

"They have, for all intents and purposes choked out economic development in an area that once thrived with commercial diversity."

There are other factors at play in the destruction of commercial diversity, but Britt's request that Washington, and, by extension, the Rangers organization, should stop legitimizing a rotten industry, is a valid one. The team certainly wouldn't condone, say, Josh Hamilton pitching his favorite brand of chewing tobacco. Payday lenders occupy the same moral sphere.

If nothing else, think of the fans who are subjected to Washington's scalp anytime they watch a game. It's just cruel.


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37 comments
QuitNannying
QuitNannying

Quit trying to nanny everyone, Observer writers!  It has gotten really really old.

primi_timpano
primi_timpano topcommenter

Ace Cash also advertises at RBPiA.

RTGolden
RTGolden

For one thing, payday lenders don't move in and 'choke out diverse businesses'.  Diverse businesses either fold up or move on and payday lenders move into the vacuum.  If that area is supporting 20 of these places, there must be a thriving market for their 'service' there.

 

Secondly, what good does it do to castigate Wash for pitching payday loans, or Aikman for RAC?  If people want to get rid of payday lenders, take it to the lege.  If Wash steps away from this gig, it isn't going to hurt the payday lending industry one little bit.  

 

Finally, what has Britt or Eric done personally to rid this planet of the scourge of payday lenders?  Is clucking at Wash the extent of your outrage?  Have you gotten involved in the legislative attempts to tighten regulations on them?  Picketed any of them lately?

Myrna.Minkoff-Katz
Myrna.Minkoff-Katz topcommenter

Don't they pay him enough?  These predator usurers at Ace take advantage of desperate people trying to keep from going homeless.  Shame on Ron Washington.

ChrisYu
ChrisYu

the Cowboys play tonight.

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

A fool and his money.

 

They are going to either end up in debt, or end up in trouble because they can't end up in debt.  The root cause is that they make bad decisions.  We (as in, society) have tried and tried and tried to educate them.  We should keep trying, but prohibiting the practice would just drive it underground, back to loan sharks and gangsters.

Finn
Finn

So do payday lenders occupy the same "moral sphere" as some of the lovely establishments and individuals that advertise illegal activities in your fine weekly?  Just another example of your manufactured outrage that has become all too common in Unfair Park.  Count me as one reader who really misses the selected musings of Wilonsky.

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

Free market. It's distasteful and I don't disagree, but it's no more distasteful to me than Troy Aikman schilling for Rent A Center, or being told that every truck made is the official truck of Texas because Texans love their trucks, or hearing from Jim Knox, or the team marketing campaign assuming all fans are small-town hillbillies, or TAG assuming we are all geezers who need birthday shoutouts and every single thing over-explained even though we have the visuals to show us and his rambling is unnecessary...

 

Hell, I find Ian Kinsler's pop-ups and baserunning brainfarts to be more distasteful than Ron's ads. 

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk

Hey, as long as they're buying Ranger's tickets and paraphernalia, what's the problem?

LiberalInfection
LiberalInfection

Did you write this or just copy and paste it from a liberal infoshop pamphlet?

TheCredibleHulk
TheCredibleHulk

 @RTGolden Well, to be fair, writing articles that inform the public about these institutions, their practices and their spokespersons *IS* technically doing something about it.

 

Whether or not you agree with the inflammatory tone, the writers motivations, the particulars or the conclusions of the author is more an issue of the personal taste.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

 @Myrna.Minkoff-Katz im conufused,  ACE runs a legitimate business.  Lots of people cash checks there.  Why shame on Ron.  He got paid, so what

Anon
Anon

@everlastingphelps Loan sharks charge less interest.

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

 @Finn Maybe they want the business to go back to the loan sharks, so the loan sharks can start buying thinly veiled ads next to the hookers and head shops.

AeroRazavi
AeroRazavi

 @Scruffygeist The free market also means as a customer you can complain.  In this case a customer (Rangers' fan) can complain.  It's up to Rangers whether or not to act on that.  People have made issue of Aikman schilling for Rent-A-Center. 

ChrisYu
ChrisYu

 @Myrna.Minkoff-Katz

 oh so now you're a football fan.

i'll bet you my Ace cash loan the Giants get beat tonight.

Scruffygeist
Scruffygeist

 @AeroRazavi I complain quite a bit about the broadcast, which I care about much more than the commercials.

ScottsMerkin
ScottsMerkin topcommenter

 @AeroRazavi  @Scruffygeist why is a rangers customer complaining about ACE, it isnt affecting the product on the field?  boycott ACE if you have a problem, and if it bugs you that much, ignore the Rangers...which you probably for the last 20 years until they made the world series

Joshstruckoutagain
Joshstruckoutagain

I'm a fan of SPORTS! Mr. Tone, anyone gonna write up the big game tonight? Beginning of Cowboy season?  Or is this as SPORTY as y'all get up in here?  Throw Merten a bone, call some Ticket JV guys, do it yourself since y'all are probably saving up for another 8 food/entertainment writers..cause this thing is in the ditch (loosely translates to this sucks now!)

LiberalInfection
LiberalInfection

 @joe.tone I need to be a fan in order to recognize this as a biased rambling mess of an article? 

 

Typical liberal racism/classism about how helpless black/poor people are and incapable of making their own decisions. Good thing Eric Nicholson is here to save them from themselves.

DavyCrockett
DavyCrockett

 @LiberalInfection To answer your questions: Yes, I read the article. Yes, I've been reading this paper since I discovered it in the 90s while at UNT. Yes, I accused you of trying too hard.

AeroRazavi
AeroRazavi

 @ScottsMerkin  @Scruffygeist Why is a Rangers' customer complaining about ACE? Because he can.  Free market and free speech go hand-in-hand.  Just as you can complain about some other Rangers fan's opinion.  It all works out in the end.

Joshstruckoutagain
Joshstruckoutagain

What this guy said! Tone doesn't get it, he's in the Great State now, and we likey the football.

joe.tone
joe.tone moderator

 @Joshsbrokendisqus We had a bit of a preview post last week and will have something on the game in the morning. Sorry you think we're in the ditch. I can't be sure, but I feel like there might be an outlet or two writing competently about the Cowboys today.

Glenn
Glenn

 @DavyCrockett  @LiberalInfection That's the implication and every fool knows it. I live near a street with plenty of these fast-cash places, and nobody but the customers give a damn whether they're there or not. Aren't there other do-gooder causes to write about ... like stopping natural-gas production, or spraying mosquitoes with organic perfume?

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