I always appreciate thoughtful engagement, so thank you! I’m going to start with a quip, but bear with me. As I read your response, I couldn’t help but hope that in these thousands of credit reports you’ve read over the years, you read them with more attentiveness than you did my post. That said, I’m sure you did, I’m just ribbing you — I am confident that if you were involved in making decisions about people’s finances you were aware of the seriousness of any outcomes and certainly would have given them more consideration than a random blog on the internet.
Nevertheless, there’s a lot to unpack here, and I’m going to make a full post about it. I’m not sure what the conventions for this procedure are, but I’m going to link to your response and quote it heavily, because I want to take the points in turn, as they highlight an important truth: explaining how a thing works is not the same as explaining why it works that way, nor is it the same as justifying its behavior.
The trouble was less that I was actually unsure of how credit reports work, but more that I was flabbergasted to discover that the way they work is so … idiotic. The entire thing smells of a poorly conceived and even more poorly executed idea. You raise some great points I hadn’t considered though, and I’m sad to say that they don’t rationalize the system, but they did make me think about this more, and despite everything I learned being further evidence of chicanery, I do love learning about byzantine and stupid structures.
Again, thank you for the thoughtful response. I will be posting the full reply on my blog by the end of tomorrow unless something weird comes up.