The Year Wasn't All Bad, Including the Gift to Be Had

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With just a wee bit of sass we mark another year passed, where has gone the time?
So much to remember and it's already December, so we put another year to rhyme
Many have written and said they are smitten with this stab at year-end humor,
While others have said it fills them with dread, but that could be just a rumor

2009 arrived with joy inside, for CUs a birthday centennial,

Much had been planned across the land to mark one-tenth of a millennial,
Yet on many days what was ablaze were not any birthday candles,
Instead strategic plans headed to garbage cans, and the talk to some unfortunate scandals

As it turned out there are reasons to shout, let this not be at all overlooked,
Oh-nine offers lessons including this session that your goose has hardly been cooked,
Things could be much ranker, you could be a banker, keeping your curtains closed tight,
Instead for CUs it's been mostly good news, (except for "assessments" that bump in the night)

But first let's review a few highlights that you frankly may have tried to repress,
This is, you'll recall, the year that appalled with much news that did so depress,
Why, we were just under way when, what did you say?, a sign of what is in store?
Indeed, the NCUA got events underway by taking over U.S. Central and WesCorp,

But how could that be? Many CEOs could not see, since examiners had been on-site,
What were they reviewing? Why no poo-pooing of investments that didn't seem right?
Soon many were aware their member capital shares would not long be left in the till,
But it wasn't all bad, so don't feel too sad, one ex-corp CEO got six mill,

Housing markets started burning and stomachs began churning, it all became quite the mess,
Everyone was learning you don't do much earning when the "M" drops off the "BS,"
Foundations built in sand (states) helped sink the real estate, in Nevada they could not avert,
What many thought they'd never see, which is the reality, you can be underwater in the desert

For Gen X and Gen Y it was the year to cry, as Boomer parents moved in to their cribs,
Immediately they tweeted, feeling short-sheeted, on mooching they thought they had called dibs,
And then when on Twitter they found it was littered with messages from their CU,
Which gave social media a try, you can't beat the ROI, and hey, let's put the board on YouTube!

Despite APRs that are reaming, bankers started screaming over plans for a Consumer Protection Agency,
CUs should have stated "That's why we were created, come on over and you will see,"
Meanwhile in Maine members saw through the claims and refused to let themselves be misled,
They shouted "No, thanks" to a merger with a bank, let's hear it for the folks at KV Fed

If there was a lesson from this recession it was more than just the diligence that's due,
Instead it was a reminder to take off the blinders and see what's really all around you,
Good news did appear in this 100th year, and for those of you feeling miffed,
Don't assume it's a shoo-in the birthday party's in ruins, for you are overlooking the gift

You've done more than survived, you've become prized; you see how much the country needs you,
Left in all the rubble are members in trouble, that's why folks still come to "CU,"
While other FIs have come to be despised, credit unions have lived their philosophy,
With your history behind, keep your principals in mind, and CUs will see another century

Frank J. Diekmann is publisher of Credit Union Journal and can be reached at

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