I appreciated Tom Dorety’s comments in his letter to the editor regarding the now infamous debate between small town banker Ken Ferguson and mega credit union CEO Jim Blaine (CU Times, March 31). What I don’t understand is why everyone seemed so surprised by the outcome. Have you ever known Jim Blaine to be politically correct? To even say them together in a sentence is an oxymoron. As far as I’m concerned, what I witnessed was “vintage” Blaine. Whether hearing the man debate the perils of indirect lending or risk-based lending or whatever, he is passionate, tenacious, and downright bull-headed when it comes to certain issues. We know him to be controversial, colorful, and not one to pussy-foot around. I have to believe his reputation was well-known to CUNA too. They should have seen this one coming a mile away. But let’s face it. Blaine’s the kind of guy you definitely want on your side instead of the other guy’s. Perhaps Blaine didn’t mention all of the usual arguments because he knew we all were familiar with them. Dick Ensweiller did a great job of recapping the usual arguments following the debate. Ken Fergeson knows them too. He is well studied on our movement – I’ve read his articles disparaging credit unions – they’re enough to make your blood boil. I think he’s dumb like a fox. Blaine’s plain-spoken attack just skipped all the niceties and got down to business. Let’s remember who the enemy is here. These guys are out to annihilate us. Could someone else besides Blaine have perhaps represented us better? Maybe. But look at it this way. The debate technically served no purpose other than to entertain us. No one was going to change their minds and convert. And I must admit, I was thoroughly entertained. Mary Cunningham President/CEO USA FCU San Diego, Calif.

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