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    19 Things That Are Unfortunately Normal For Americans, But Are Basically Scams

    It's a party in the USA! *cries*

    If you do or have lived in the US, you've probably noticed some things that are (unfortunately) totally normal here are actually...fully bonkers if you think about them for more than a second. Like, "How is this even real? This is a SCAM," levels of bonkers. Well, redditor u/catlady427 decided to bring this up and ask, "What's the biggest scam in America?" Naturally, people had a lot to say. Here are 19 of the very best answers:

    Ilana Glazer looking shocked in front of an American flag
    Comedy Central

    1. Bank fees

    Igorbondarenko / Getty Images/iStockphoto

    "You are broke, so we are going to charge you for being broke."


    "I got charged $200 in like a week — even after I paused my card — because subscription services that I gave my card info to were bypassing that to charge my bank directly. I was so pissed."


    2. News as entertainment

    Young Man in Glasses is Sitting on a Sofa and Watching TV with Live News.
    Gorodenkoff / Getty Images/iStockphoto


    "The FCC needs to require broadcasters to CLEARLY identify any 'news' program that is actually 'opinion' programming, from the local news broadcasts to the cable networks."


    3. The price of college textbooks

    A stack of textbooks with sticky notes
    Photoalto / Getty Images/PhotoAlto

    "You need edition 10 for this class. They change one chapter in the book, make it a new edition, overprice it, and fuck the college kids."


    4. Student loans

    application for student loan. Filling up the loan form with calculator, pen, note pad on the desk.
    Jayk7 / Getty Images


    "My friend forgot to close his student loan account AFTER he had paid it off. He was charged $5 monthly for years and had no idea. He owed a ton of money. ALLLLL BECAUSE HE DIDN'T ACTUALLY 'CLOSE' his student loan account. WTF?"


    "I cried on the phone the other day with a student loans agent. I was getting penalized for a form they hadn't processed yet. I was being devastated with financial repercussions — threatening my ability to finish my education — because their processing system was backed up."


    5. Multi-level marketing


    "Whatever MLM scheme my sister-in-law was peddling at Thanksgiving."


    "MLMs are so prevalent in female circles, preying on the vulnerable with promises of financial freedom."


    6. Health insurance

    Will Ferrel as an angry doctor on the phone


    "What I hate most about it is my daughter's doctor prescribed her X medicine for her problem. The insurance company denied paying for the medicine because they don't think she needs it. I think it is really stupid they can deny something a doctor says their patient needs based on their assessment of what they think she does or doesn't need."

    — u/landob

    "My private practice doctor once told me that his office would bill my insurance 'X' amount of dollars, and the insurance would come back and say, 'X-Y' dollars. And he wouldn’t expect to receive payment “Z” until three to six months out."


    7. Rent-to-own stores


    "They sell furniture and electronics type stuff to people with bad credit who can't really afford it and let them pay a small amount weekly. If people end up paying on time and pay stuff off, they will pay two or three times more than the item is worth. If they make a payment late, the item is repossessed and resold to someone else, and the first person loses all the money they paid."


    "I used to be the sales manager at my local Rent-A-Center years ago. It’s a huge scam, and I feel dirty even having worked there. The worse thing I ever had to do was repossess a fridge from a single mother. She cried as she removed the items and kept saying, 'I have no where to put these. They are going to go bad.' Another one was when I had to repossess a bunk bed from two kids. They asked their dad where they were going to sleep. It’s been years, and I still think about it from time to time. Don’t rent from rent-to-own stores. Don’t give them business."


    8. College tuition prices

    Male and female students using laptops in classroom
    Maskot / Getty Images/Maskot


    "I think we do great with community colleges. They accept everyone and are fairly cheap. But the four-year schools are ridiculous. I actually found my community college to have nicer facilities, better professors, and smaller class sizes. And it was like seven or eight times cheaper."


    9. Payday loan businesses

    Couple signing contract
    Rob Daly / Getty Images

    "It’s predatory as shit, and it’s just legal loansharking."


    "When my husband and I had just gotten married, they told us that taking out those loans would help our credit. Turns out they're considered desperation loans and our credit tanked, even after we paid them off. It took forever to get them off of our backs about 'raising our credit and paying off debt at the same time,' and now they still send us mail trying to get us to take out another loan. I wish we’d had someone there to tell us what a bad idea it was. We trusted them, and now we still have four more years until those inquiries fall off of our credit reports."


    10. Online charlatans that will share their "secrets" if you buy their course

    Paramount Network


    "My college classmate sends me spam about buying his classes on how to succeed at being a lawyer... He's not a lawyer."


    11. The credit system


    "Pay everything off and your score goes down? Talk about indentured servitude."


    "FICO is fucking rigged. My scores dropped last week. The property management company reports my rent payments to the bureaus. The building owner changed to a different management company, who set me up as a new account. I've been here for a long time, and that account gave my report some age. Now I have a closed account hit, and a new account hit. Nothing about my credit use or risk changed, but since two other people transacted business, my score takes a hit."


    12. The cost of funerals

    Family laying flowers on the grave
    Rawpixel / Getty Images/iStockphoto


    "It shouldn’t cost over a thousand dollars to put somebody in the ground. My aunt made payments for her daughter’s funeral for five years. It’s a box in a hole; it shouldn’t cost $8K to put a body in a hole!"


    13. Cable TV/internet monopolies

    Huntstock / Getty Images/DisabilityImages


    "Seriously. The Spectrum person that signed me up on the phone gave me a price and simply neglected to tell me it was a 'promotional rate.' Price goes up 50% after a year."


    14. Insulin prices

    Vial bottles
    Emilija Manevska / Getty Images


    "I called the pharmacy about a generic today that’s been around several years. $379 without insurance. The generic. I guess they just want us all to die."


    15. The two-party political system

    Donald Trump And Joe Biden Participate In First Presidential Debate
    Pool / Getty Images


    16. Ticketmaster

    man using mobile app cinema movie e-ticketing reservation looking for seat inside cinema hall
    Edwin Tan / Getty Images


    "They jack the ticket prices up with tons of hidden fees. A ticket will be priced at $50. Then Ticketmaster will tack on all kinds of bullshit like 'venue fees,' 'service fees,' etc. All of a sudden that $50 ticket costs you over $100."


    17. Joining the military

    Soldiers lining up for the annual New York City Veterans Day Parade
    Bo Zaunders / Getty Images

    "Serving my country. Getting exposed to chemicals. Dying from the inside at 40 with no help from the society I served."


    "And then you get home and vets are treated like shit by the government."


    18. The whole health system

    Male nurse pushing stretcher gurney bed in hospital corridor with doctors & senior female patient
    Spotmatik / Getty Images/iStockphoto

    "Like...putting a fee on holding your baby after giving birth? Seriously?"


    "If you ask what a procedure will cost, they refuse to say and tell you to call the 'medical billing company.' You can call the medical billing company from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., during which you are put on hold multiple times and give your complete insurance information to three separate people. Even if you are all 'pro free market,' how can a market work if the consumer essentially can’t find what the prices will be ahead of time?"


    19. And finally, insurance



    "Buying any kind of insurance and then they refuse to pay out a reasonable claim."


    Did we miss anything that you think is a major scam in America? If so, let us know in the comments below.

    H/T: r/AskReddit

    Note: Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.