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If you haven't heard of merchantsshouldpaytheirshare.org, get ready for your daily outrage...

Their ads are running on the front page of Talking Points Memo.

The bill they are opposing is HR 2382, The Credit Card Interchange Fees Act. The point of the act is to rein in the fees that card issuers charge merchants for accepting credit and debit card payments. Of course, they state the bill will be too burdensome on consumers but when you do a little digging, you see who they really want to help: the card issuers. At the same time they're trying to cynically and hypocritically scapegoat Wal-mart, Target and so forth by saying, "giant retailers should pay," but the problem is, the bill is mostly designed to help the small businesses that are increasingly burdened by the per-transaction credit card fees that have been allowed to rise unchecked for years. This is an astroturf campaign, and look who's behind it:

Advanta Corporation
Alabama Bankers Association
American Bankers Association
American Express Company
American Financial Services Association
Bank of America
Barclays Bank
BB&T
California Bankers Association
Capital One Financial Corporation
Card Services For Credit Unions, Inc. (CSCU)
Citi
Colorado Bankers Association
Consumer Bankers Association
Co-op Financial Services
Credit Union National Association
Delaware Bankers Association
Electronic Transactions Association (ETA)
Financial Services Roundtable
Florida Bankers Association
Georgia Bankers Association
Hawaii Bankers Association
Hawaii Financial Services Association
HSBC North America
Illinois Bankers Association
Independent Community Bankers of America
Iowa Bankers Association
JPMorgan Chase
Maine Bankers Association
Maryland Bankers Association
Massachusetts Bankers Association
MasterCard Worldwide
Mid-Atlantic Financial Services Coalition
Minnesota Card Coalition
Mississippi Bankers Association
Montana Bankers Association
National Association of Federal Credit Unions
Nebraska Bankers Association
Nevada Bankers Association
New Hampshire Bankers Association
New Mexico Bankers Association
New York Bankers Association
North Carolina Bankers Association
Ohio Bankers League
Ohio Financial Services Association
Oklahoma Bankers Association
Pennsylvania Bankers Association
PSCU Financial Services
Puerto Rico Bankers Association
South Dakota Bankers Association
Tennessee Bankers Association
Texas Bankers Association
USAA Federal Savings
U.S. Bank
Vermont Bankers Association
Visa Inc.
Washington Bankers Association
Wells Fargo
West Virginia Bankers Association
Wisconsin Bankers Association

Pretty impressive, eh? So clearly, as you can see, it's really all about the consumers. All of those banks and bank associations really care SO MUCH about the average Joe consumer having to pay more. Or not.

Or maybe what this is really is a disgusting ploy by the banks to save their "right" to charge merchants 3% (and rising, without regulation) transaction fees, by trying to convince consumers that the result will be that the fees will just be passed on to the consumer. And whose decision might that be? OH! The banks? Imagine that!

So if you have the time, send a nice email to them: info@thecardalliance.org

Go on, let them know how you feel. They're taking suggestions.

Originally posted to lonesomerobot on Thu May 20, 2010 at 05:04 AM PDT.

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