Mr. Speaker, the issue of the spread in rates between what is charged by credit card companies and what the other traditional rates would be has been mentioned a couple of times now.
The member may very well remember that when a credit card was used many years ago, the merchant pulled out a pad of onion skin paper and flipped through the many columns of defaulted cards, and the costs had to be borne. The member would probably concede that there are some mitigating explanations.
I want to ask a question about one other feature of credit cards. If we are to address consumer spending and fairness, the member knows that credit card companies do not permit merchants to give cash discounts. In my view that is part of the problem, as the member said, of hooking people to credit card usage. There appears to be some latitude here.
People want to spend what they can afford to spend. To get a discount on the price for a cash payment would also be an interesting proposition to look at to amend the regime under which credit cards operate.