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The view from Chicago

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It's a pleasant Monday evening in Chicago, and most of the commuters walking from their offices pause at the Hyatt Regency to catch a glimpse. Camera crews are setting up. Police officers are milling about. And buses of protesters are pulling in. Volunteers around the corner hand out ready-made signs for protesters who forgot theirs. Each one adorned with a picture of Jamie Dimon, Brian Moynihan, Angelo Mozilo or Lloyd Blankfein. A makeshift marching band is already playing. On the hotel steps, a sizeable group of attendees of the Mortgage Bankers Association 98th conference dressed in dark suits idle, watching, too. "Union, union, not union, union," says one of them to his friend, who's nodding along as they point out which protesters they think are union members. After all, the AFL-CIO stormed a smaller MBA event in Washington earlier in the year.

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