Mr. Trump's nominee for Education Secretary, Betsy DeVos, faces the U.S. Senate beginning today, hence you can call your Senators and tell them to reject her nomination. As always, you need not write a five-paragraph essay; a mere sentence will do, like this one: I oppose the DeVos nomination because I fear she will divert taxpayer money to private schools without any oversight or accountability. A lot of Democrats, as you know, have rationalized their support for the charter school scam by promising that the state will ensure those charter schools will do a good job, but they typically don't deliver on those promises, and Ms. DeVos really doesn't deliver on those promises -- thanks to her family's efforts in Michigan, that state now has no less than 45 charter school "authorizers," and why isn't the state doing that job on the people's behalf? In short: charter schools steal money from the taxpayer to run schools that perform no better than the public schools they impoverish. And Ms. DeVos would bring that "winning" formula to the entire nation. Unless we make noise.
Meanwhile, Republicans controlling our government have the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (or CFPB) in their sights. "Effective consumer protections aren't some sort of luxury we can't afford," the latest email missive from USPIRG reminds us, "they're hallmarks of a great state, a great country, and a great society." Indeed they are -- even though folks like Donald Trump seem to think you measure greatness in America by how much you get away with stealing from other people, and though Republicans typically condemn any attempt to stop snake oil salesman from hurting us as "big government," completely oblivious, it seems, to the fact that when a bankster screws its customers, it's still all over the news. Indeed, without the CFPB, it's very likely no one would have caught Wells Fargo opening up accounts without their customers' consent, and certainly no one would have known that two of the three largest credit reporting agencies were inflating credit scores. So USPIRG helps you tell your Senators to reject efforts to destroy or weaken the CFPB. You know what? Call them afterward. They won't see it coming.
Finally, speaking of Wells Fargo, Americans for Financial Reform helps you tell T-Mobile to stop mandating the kind of unrealistic sales goals that enabled so much lawbreaking at Wells Fargo. Remember how we all rooted for T-Mobile when AT&T was trying to buy it, and how pleased we all were when the Justice Department managed to scuttle the merger in 2011 merely by threatening a lawsuit over it, and how pleased we were to see them doing so much better after being spared assimilation into AT&T's empire? Well, that's over with now, since T-Mobile's management has apparently been threatening its sales reps with reduced pay, reduced hours, and termination if they don't add unneeded lines, services, and equipment to their customers' accounts. People who work for a living deserve better than that, and the customers they serve also deserve better than that. And no, pressuring T-Mobile to stop making its employees' lives hell does not constitute some sort of "oppression," for this is America, and the Big Stick of Bad PR is ours to use at any time. Even if haters gonna hate.