Ross, without responding directly to these assertions, points out there are some 14 million Americans presently "unbanked"—meaning, without access to checking accounts, debit cards or other financial services, all of whom potentially might find the Occupy debit card useful. As for fees, he says, "Our aim is to have lower fees than almost anybody. It's hard to have the lowest because the big banks have great economies of scale. We want to provide good value to people currently exploited by other card providers." Of these, he says, there are a lot of "horrible ones with hidden fees."
Fees for the Occupy card would be totally transparent. Moreover, anyone who signs up for the card will get an instruction sheet on how to minimize them.
The card, he says, represents his coop's attempt "to build a better financial system—transparent and inclusive and available to everybody. It is a sincere attempt that represents the values of Occupy. We're all very committed to that, all very consistent with it."
And that, as another famous card issuer says, is priceless.