We Need Holly Petraeus

A quick note about Holly Petraeus …


(Photo credit: Secretary of Defense)

We like to claim in the United States that we honor veterans and their families, but that hasn’t stopped the financial services sector from preying on them. The abuses are numerous, and putting a stop to them can often seem less like effective law enforcement and more like a not-fun game of whack-a-mole.

A few examples from recent years:

As if all this were not enough, returning veterans are also targeted (pun intended!) by the for profit higher education sector, who are very eager to sign up students who come with G.I. Bill benefits, but are less than eager to share the fact that many employers look down on degrees from such institutions.

Holly Petraeus, who comes from a military family, understands intuitively that the unscrupulous and greedy – from individual life insurance agents to multi-national banks — know that all-too-many military personnel are young, living far away from family and are less than financially savvy. She was the head of the Better Business Bureau’s outreach to military families in the aughts before being appointed by Elizabeth Warren in 2011 to head up the at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s service members affairs division. At the CFPB, she’s been particularly active in helping military families navigate housing issues – housing issues often caused by the high interest rate mortgages that are marketed to those who serve our country.

Let’s hope Holly Petraeus’ work does not get subsumed in the sex scandal enveloping her husband, now former Central Intelligence Agency head Gen. David Petraeus. We need her services much too much to let her become best known as just one more wife done wrong by a less than faithful spouse.

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