The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has launched what it is calling a virtual march on Washington to oppose financial reforms being considered by Congress this week. With relatively few actual Americans willing to take their summer vacation in D.C. to march in favor of the Big Banks whose gambling broke the economy and whose practices have pillaged the financial security of working people, the Chamber has resorted to urging "avatars," or computer representations of people, to march on the virtual capital of the U.S. This so-called march seems a fitting symbol of the emptiness of the whole gambit by the Chamber. With Wall Street lobbyists swarming the capitol and Wall Street spending millions of dollars to thwart the reforms most needed and wanted by actual American people, the Chamber has had to manufacture a people's protest against the reforms, but sans real people. Apparently, they could not even enlist their buddies orchestrating the Tea Party, like former Congressman Dick Armey, or their cashroots allies in astroturf over at the Orwellian-named FreedomWorks, to cajole or even hire stand-in protesters to come to the National Mall to take up pitchforks against financial reforms. But lest all this computer gamesmanship be in vain, the Chamber is taking steps to ensure that Members of Congress know how many of the avatars are their purported constituents -- residents who love the Big Banks enough to send the very best: their idealized computer images.
Hopefully the real pawns in the Chamber's multi-million dollar lobbying game have more than virtual dollars in their bank accounts. Of course, with virtual people virtually marching in favor of the virtual economy manufactured by what turned out to be basically virtual banks with virtual ledgers, it's hard to know what is real anymore. What really is real is the need for real financial reforms, not fake ones, and real leaders in Congress who can tell the difference between the people they actually represent and the Chamber's financial interests that they were not actually elected to Congress to serve. If you'd like to save actual reforms that would help stop Wall Street gambling, please help us whip the votes on the conference committee considering the reforms this week.