Vacation loans? Are you stupid?

I was my local bank -- TD BankNorth -- the other day, depositing a check and looking at mortgage information. I read the brochure and saw that this "financial services institution" was offering "vacation loans."

I know that most banks offer vacation loans and loans for installing pools or getting breast implants, but I'm still amazed that they advertise a product that is so dangerous to the financial health of their customers. I was talking to the loan officer while I waited for the computer to process my mortgage application, and I asked her about the vacation loans. She said that she felt that they were a valuable service to consumers because they were preferable to putting recreational travel expenses on a credit card.

I guess that's true. But it's also kind of like hearing a coke dealer defend his trade by saying that crack is bad for your teeth.