That may be the way it is done in today's' world. And I use plastic fairly often. What you need to do is see it from the merchants viewpoint and realise that the card company has instant and complete access to the merchants bank account. The card company uses this access to recover fraudulent credit card transactions from the merchants' account or those transactions that the card holder may later rue or regret. The card company can deposit or withdraw a merchants' money in a heart beat and it requires an act of both Congress and God for a merchant to recover his funds. The card company is in a win-win position. The middle class has long been seen as the merchant class but during the Obama Depression the merchant class has shrunk dramatically and I think that credit cards are one reason.
The card company thinks of the card holder as nothing more than a mark, engaged in a 3 card monty game with floating rules and an awards program that can change, or be abandoned at the drop of a hat and the whole thing is run under the pretense that it is other peoples money at stake but the card company has you playing its awards program shell game with your own money, while the poor card holders try desperately to spend enough additional money to get a small bite of the apple. I intend to continue to use my card and I hope you do too. Just realize what you mean to the card company. In fact if things haven't changed during the last twenty years, one of the largest expenses a card company has is luring new marks into playing the awards game.