Mean Gene
Mean Gene
Pittsburgh's most decorated poker blogger, which I admit is like being the best shortstop in Greenland

Subscribe with Bloglines

My Articles

Presto, the Arlo, & the Hammer
An Online Code of Conduct
The Ethics of Ratholing
"The Professor, the Banker..."
"Ace on the River"

My Columns

Lose the Shades
If You Can't Say Something Nice
Whither the Kicker
The Lady is a Champ?
Covering the WSOP (or not)
Statistics, Luck, and Poker
Poker and New Orleans
Managing a Bankroll
How To Tell A Bad Beat Story
Telling Lies
The Power of Poker Tracker
Advanced Card-Handling

My Greatest Hits

5 Things To Do Before I Die
Cafeteria Nostalgia
Mean Gene's Dubious Dating Tips
Poker and Business?
There's No Such Thing As Luck?
Isabelle, Je t'adore
No Shirt No Shoes No Service
Well, The Food Was Good
Good Morning, Mr. Matusow!
The Weekend of our Discontent, I
The Weekend of our Discontent, II
Books That Left Their Mark
Ode to a Fish Sandwich
Bill Simmons Ain't the Poker Guy
The Sports Guy Still Ain't the Poker Guy
Again, The Media Tackles Poker
Five Years After 9/11
Hitting Pretty Girls in the Face
Sixth-Graders Suck

Fellow Poker Bloggers

Guinness and Poker
Cards Speak
Tao of Poker
Up for Poker
Boy Genius
Chris Halverson
Poker Grub
The Fat Guy
Todd Commish
Poker Works
Bill Rini
Bad Blood
Love and Casino War
Double As
Lion Tales
Paul Phillips
Daniel Negreanu
Poker Nerd
Poker Nation
Poker in Arrears
Human Head
Sound of a Suckout
Chicks With Chips
TP's Table Talk
Royal Poker
This is Not A Poker Blog
Chick and a Chair
Go Be Rude
Poker Cheapskate
Poker & Other Stuff
Seven Two
Musical Poker
WPBT Online
Isabelle Mercier
Cardschat Blog
Amy Calistri
BJ Nemeth
Annie's Blog

Poker Sites

Cardschat Poker Forum
Barstool Sports
Card Player
Internet Texas Hold-Em
Poker Pages


  • 12/01/2003 - 01/01/2004
  • 01/01/2004 - 02/01/2004
  • 02/01/2004 - 03/01/2004
  • 03/01/2004 - 04/01/2004
  • 04/01/2004 - 05/01/2004
  • 05/01/2004 - 06/01/2004
  • 06/01/2004 - 07/01/2004
  • 07/01/2004 - 08/01/2004
  • 08/01/2004 - 09/01/2004
  • 09/01/2004 - 10/01/2004
  • 10/01/2004 - 11/01/2004
  • 11/01/2004 - 12/01/2004
  • 12/01/2004 - 01/01/2005
  • 01/01/2005 - 02/01/2005
  • 02/01/2005 - 03/01/2005
  • 03/01/2005 - 04/01/2005
  • 04/01/2005 - 05/01/2005
  • 05/01/2005 - 06/01/2005
  • 06/01/2005 - 07/01/2005
  • 07/01/2005 - 08/01/2005
  • 08/01/2005 - 09/01/2005
  • 09/01/2005 - 10/01/2005
  • 10/01/2005 - 11/01/2005
  • 11/01/2005 - 12/01/2005
  • 12/01/2005 - 01/01/2006
  • 01/01/2006 - 02/01/2006
  • 02/01/2006 - 03/01/2006
  • 03/01/2006 - 04/01/2006
  • 04/01/2006 - 05/01/2006
  • 05/01/2006 - 06/01/2006
  • 06/01/2006 - 07/01/2006
  • 07/01/2006 - 08/01/2006
  • 08/01/2006 - 09/01/2006
  • 09/01/2006 - 10/01/2006
  • 10/01/2006 - 11/01/2006
  • 11/01/2006 - 12/01/2006
  • 12/01/2006 - 01/01/2007
  • 01/01/2007 - 02/01/2007
  • 02/01/2007 - 03/01/2007
  • 03/01/2007 - 04/01/2007
  • 04/01/2007 - 05/01/2007
  • 05/01/2007 - 06/01/2007
  • 06/01/2007 - 07/01/2007
  • 07/01/2007 - 08/01/2007

  • Powered by Blogger

    Wednesday, January 24, 2007

    Listen to the Man

    I've nearly given up reading Bill Rini's blog because everything he writes these days is SO depressing. Online poker's in deep trouble, people don't know how bad things are, blah blah blah. What a drag.

    Unfortunately, everything he's said on the subject so far seems to be spot-on correct. Terrifyingly so. I don't have Bill's expertise in building ACH networks, but I did work for a bank for a few years and know a bit about how those transactions are, uh, transacted, and it would be as nothing for banks to turn off the spigot. Indeed, Bill has a post today titled Why ACH Went Away that explains the situation quite nicely.

    Bill also has a post today that is a must-read for anyone and everyone who plays online poker. Read it in it's entirety, but let me quote part of it here. Bill was engaged in conversation with Haley, who said, "So Messrs. Shulman and Ivey, Seif and Hellmuth, Brunson and Negreanu, and all you others: It’s time to make a stand."

    To which Bill replied,
    No Haley, it’s not time for Shulman, Ivey or Brunson to fight your fight. It’s time for you to fight this fight. It’s time for you, and me, and everybody who gives a rat’s ass. As much as I like old Pappa Doyle it’s easy to ignore one man. It’s hard to ignore millions of people. It’s even harder to ignore millions of pissed off people.
    While I agree with Haley that it would be NICE if the big names would come forward and lend their weight, the question every single poker players should be asking is that, "What can I do to help?" We keep hearing that there are 50 million poker players in the United States. Where are they?

    Why, as Bill asks, wasn't there an mob outside the courthouse where the two Neteller founders were arraigned? Why has the response to Neteller's withdrawal from the U.S. market been a collective shrug and an application to Click2Pay? Party Poker, the biggest online poker room in the world, shuttered its doors to American players and no one really seemed to mind. "I'll just play at Poker Stars, Full Tilt, Ultimate Bet".

    That is NOT a happy state of affairs, people. Searching out kinda-acceptable alternatives to successful and reliable companies forced out by the government is NOT a long-term solution. What happens when these stop-gap measures are also choked off, as they almost certainly will be?

    The answer to this problem is not pre-paid phone cards or opening an Antiguan bank account. The answer is to get online poker legalized. That's not the best-case scenario--almost certainly, it's the ONLY case.

    So, again, the question every poker player should be asking is "What can I do? What can I do to get online poker legalized?" Waiting for Doyle Brunson and Phil Hellmuth and Howard Lederer to save the day is NOT acceptable behavior. Aggression is rewarded at the poker table, but if poker players continue to be so passive about fighting this there won't be a game left to play. The government is trying to kill online poker, and they'll succeed if players don't try to stop them.

    Don't just sit there. Join the Poker Players Alliance. Throw a few bucks their way--think of it as a long-term positive EV investment. Write to your senators and representatives, and tell them (politely) why poker should be legalized. The next time your friends get together to play a little penny-ante try to get them involved too.

    Let's not forget, the targeting of online poker is just one minor offshoot of a broad assault on our civil liberties. Over the last few years the Bush Administration decided (and wasn't checked by the supine Republican Congress) that it has the right to arrest and imprison you without charge. You can be held indefinitely without access to counsel. Your phone calls can be intercepted without a warrant, your financial records accessed without your permission. Laws that the President doesn't want to follow can be ignored thanks to "signing statements". The Attorney General said that there's no right to habeas corpus in the Constitution. Very scary stuff.

    The trend in this country has been toward giving up our rights in the name of "security". Why so many of my fellow Americans have felt that the best way to feel secure is to abandon their responsibilities as citizens is beyond me, but that's a post for another day. Or, no, it isn't--read Fhwrdh's post about the boiling frog treatment we've gotten in the U.S. the last few years.

    Get mad, dammit, and then do something about it. Don't wait for someone else to save online poker. Join the fight. There's strength in numbers. Especially where politicians facing re-election are concerned. get this widget Please visit Pokernews site for more poker news, poker strategy articles or poker rules.

    Play Poker Online
    Play Poker Online at Full Tilt Poker
    Learn, Chat, and Play with the Pros at the fastest growing Online Poker Room.


    Play Poker Online at Blind Bet Poker. Bonuses and promotions by online poker rooms like Doyles Room, Titan Poker, Full Tilt Poker and Noble Poker. Poker strategy for beginners, advanced, and professional poker players. A poker terminology section, news & online poker tournaments.

    Poker Forums
    Definitive online poker portal, featuring a poker odds calculator, poker forums, an excellent poker bonus code section with deposit bonuses.

    Full Tilt Poker Freerolls
    Party Poker Strategy Guide

    The 2006 WSOP
    Total Coverage
    From the Urinals to the Hooker Bar



    Poker Savvy