Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Cooperation and Credit Cards

Let it not be said that bi-partisan bills that engender massive support from both parties never happen.  In fact they happen more frequently than you would think.  Take this bill designed to ban the use of credit cards in online gambling.

      The U.S. Congress has voted 317-93 in favor of a bill that will place a ban on many forms of Internet gambling because credit cards, banks and other online credit companies will no longer be allowed to make payments to Internet gambling web sites.  It would be the job of the Treasury Department and Federal Reserve to try and make sure that companies are not allowing the payments to online gambling sites that are traditionally overseas.  Law enforcement and Internet service providers will work together to block user access to gambling web sites.

The effects of this are really unknown.  How do you police it, and what about off shore gambling?  There are still many critics, but despite that, the heavy majority that voted for it is enough to illustrate that it’s definitely the will of the people talking and not some partisan thing.

I wonder how the credit card companies feel about this.  I would imagine that they are ambivalent toward it.  Both nervous that congress just exercised the power to limit the use of credit, and relieved as gambling with credit is a fast ticket to bankruptcy and a rise in that sort of thing can’t be good for the industry’s bottom line.

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