With all apologies to Jonathan Swift.
Now, in the winter of our discontent, it's time to stop talking. Some small number of people have expressed agreement with my proposal to fix the UIGEA problem (the problem, of course, is the very existence of this onerous restriction on our personal freedom). Of course, as poker players, we are a sedentary lot. No where is the principle of Newton's First Law in greater effect than in the hearts of the American people. This country is very definitely a thing at rest, and has an unfortunate tendency to remain at rest.
Talking is not an action. Writing, no matter how well it is done, is not an action. Only taking action is an action. And now it is time to take up arms against this sea of troubles, and by opposing, end them.
It seems I will owe apologies to more than one dead writer (and one dead physicist) before this post is finished.
This is our action - collective, decisive, and unified inaction. I hereby call upon all my friends that play poker on the internet to boycott all internet poker for three days. I would like for you to join with me in declaring Friday, February 9th Black Friday - the day Internet Poker stood still.
From Midnight on February 8th (EST) through Midnight on Sunday February 11 (PST), do not play any internet poker.
The poker sites have the money to fight this bill, but they aren't pouring enough of it into the Poker Player's Alliance to make our voice heard. If all American poker players (and anyone not in the US who would like to join in) took the weekend off, it would provide a clarion call to poker sites to take some of our hard-earned rake and throw more money at this problem until the UIGEA is repealed.
No carveouts. No exemptions. Repealed. If there's ever been a time in our country when money talks, and BS walks, it's now. If we collectively withhold our rake for three days, including the evenings with the highest traffic of the week and the Sunday major tournaments, the sites will see that we are serious in this effort and will be forced to take us, and this issue, more seriously.
Three days with no Americans playing anywhere on any internet poker site. Maybe sites won't care. Maybe they feel that they can survive without the American market. Well let's band together and show them exactly what the future holds unless they step up and fund the Poker Player's Alliance with every nickel they can spare. Money can absolutely turn this problem around, and if you don't believe me, ask how many internet horse betting sites or internet lotteries are facing issues from the UIGEA.
Spread the word. A frontal assault on the email boxes and websites of poker sites may be ineffective, but a viral attack will certainly get their attention. Tell your friends, tell your enemies, tell folks in the chat boxes on web sites. Link to this, reprint this, post it over the urinals where you play Pub Poker. But let's get together. For once.
UPDATE - Shelto left the following comment - "I'd like to see a complete poker boycott for that weekend. I don't want casinos to benefit from online's demise. I suspect that their lobbying efforts have contributed to the mess we're in now. " I agree, let's go bigger. Take the weekend off completely from poker. Harrah's was a major contributor to Bill Frist's war chest, so let's put our feet on the path and walk out of every casino's poker room that weekend as well.
Anyone, anywhere is welcome to link to or repost this article with attribution, and preferably not for profit.