The People's Email Network helps you tell the Justice Department to investigate J.P. Morgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon's lobbying of Congressfolk to support a bankster-friendly provision in the recent omnibus spending bill. That provision is, as you know, the one allowing big banksters to gamble with derivatives using taxpayer funds, which action Dodd-Frank formerly prohibited. Some of you may be tempted to call this "harassment" or "chilling free speech." But you'd need to prove the mere act of investigating constitutes "harassment," and lobbying for a provision which would stand to make you a lot of money isn't quite "free speech" -- you might more accurately describe it as a bribe or, depending on the nature of the communications between Mr. Dimon and certain Congressfolk, a threat, and neither of these comprise Constitutionally-protected speech, not even to Chief Justice Roberts. Too many folks already buy laws favorable to them -- and unfavorable to the people at large -- using campaign contributions as a cudgel, and (as former Republican Rep. Vance McAllister instructed us many months ago) they're not all as good at covering their tracks as they'd like us to think. Maybe Mr. Dimon is, but we'll never know unless we do something.
Meanwhile, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board, or GASB, has proposed rules mandating state and local governments to report how much revenue they lose from "tax abatements," or tax breaks states and municipalities give to corporations for the benefit of the community. This is significant because the GASB has never done so before, and thus we can only estimate how many billions of dollars of taxpayer money -- our money -- states and municipalities spend on corporate welfare (though we think it's about $70 billion). It's also significant because the GASB develops the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, or GAAP, which almost every state and municipality follows. But while GASB's efforts also contain some loopholes, chief among them that the new rules would make reporting the recipients of taxpayer money voluntary, and though corporations like to tell you that all voluntary requirements eventually become "mandatory," they don't, and the fact remains: voluntary doesn't mean mandatory. So Good Jobs First helps you file a public comment with the GASB supporting the strongest tax abatement reporting rules possible.
Meanwhile, Consumers Union helps you call FCC Chair Tom Wheeler's toll-free number at 1.888.598.4221 and tell him to reject the proposed Comcast/Time-Warner merger. Consumers Union would also like you to tell them how the call went. The public comment period on the merger ends December 23 (which is next Tuesday); clearly the FCC hopes that everyone will forget about the merger because it's the holidays and all, but we do not forget that mergers kill jobs, reduce competition, and hike prices. It's like Our Glorious Elites have completely forgotten that more businesses means more jobs and lower prices for consumers. I say "it's like" because I'm pretty sure they just want us to think they're that dumb, or they want us to forget how things actually work. Comcast, for its part, claims it's "really" competing with wireless services (which no one who has actually used a wireless service believes) and also says "the same people" have been opposing mergers for decades. Perhaps in the 1960s South, they'd have complained that "the same people always oppose Jim Crow laws." (If you'd prefer to send an email message, Consumers Union helps you do that, too.)