Happy Monday, good Americans! Today's as good a day as any to call your Reps and Senators and tell them to pass a vigorous COVID relief package. You may want to inform them, if they're of the Republican persuasion, that a recent The Hill/Harris X poll finds a sizable majority of Republicans support the notion of Democrats passing a bill through budget reconciliation without Republican votes. So when national Republicans whine about being "left out" of the deliberation process -- which is to laugh, of course, given how often Republicans do that to Democrats, the Trump tax "reform" being only the most recent obvious example -- remind them that most of their own right-leaning constituents don't agree with them. And when Republicans whine about the deficit -- which is also to laugh, since they clearly don't care about it when they're in power -- remind them that their constituents don't care about that, either. Funny how easily you can find actual bipartisanship among the people but only the fake kind among politicians.
And if you're from West Virginia or Arizona, you may also want to mention to Sens. Manchin (D?-WV) and Sinema (D?-AZ) that you support the $15/hour minimum wage. Already I've heard liberals saying that we have to cut these two some slack because they come from conservative states, but that gives them veto power over all legislation! Do you remember voting for the Manchin/Sinema ticket in 2020? No, you do not. These two won't lose their jobs in 2024 for "being too liberal," but they will lose their jobs for doing too little, and the sooner they learn that, the better for them and for us. At least Sen. Manchin says he'd support an $11/hour minimum wage; Sen. Sinema says we shouldn't raise the wage through budget reconciliation at all. But we just almost lost our damn government to violent assholes and we are thus, ah, not particularly obsessed with "the sanctity of Senate procedure" at this point in time. Besides, she's just going to vote against the hike if we do it the "right" way. Unless we flood her phone lines, of course.
Meanwhile, the Protecting the Right to Organize (or PRO) Act (which has no bill number at this writing) would, as its title suggests, better protect workers when they try to organize for better wages and working conditions. Bosses herding their workers into anti-union meetings, or firing organizers, or sending them endless text messages, or flat-out bullying them on the floor? All that could become a thing of the past if the PRO Act passes, since the bill would not only strengthen penalties corporations face and empower our National Labor Relations Board to force corporations to bargain with employees when they commit these transgressions, but it'd also empower workers to file civil lawsuits against them, too. Does your Tea Party uncle want to call all that "frivolous lawsuits"? But who files the most frivolous lawsuits again? Corporations and Donald Trump, by the evidence. So the Daily Kos Liberation League helps you tell your Reps and Senators to protect American workers by passing the PRO Act.
Finally, People for the American Way helps you tell your Congressfolk and our President to enact legislation that would hold big tech corporations accountable for their misdeeds. And by "misdeeds" I mainly mean "allowing lies and extremist content to spread across our internet with no attempt to moderate the flow." Social media CEOs twiddled their thumbs for years, responding to any attempt to get them to do better by shrieking TEH FREE SPEECHEZ!!!!, but Facebook and Twitter aren't public utilities, they're private corporations -- best characterized as publishing houses even if our laws won't do that. Hence People for the American Way helps you call for these sites to actively moderate content. And I doubt "using algorithms" qualifies as "active moderation" -- I would call it passive moderation, in fact, and would it be piling on to note that the algorithms these best-and-brightest tech honchos develop too often spew out racist content? And that's just another reason why people, not algorithms, need to do our most important work.