Long story short: Tell your House Reps to pass the Ultra-Millionaire Tax Act, the WATER Act, the Stop Militarizing Law Enforcement Act, and the Paycheck Fairness Act; also tell your Congressfolk to close big corporate tax loopholes and strengthen whistleblower rewards. Use the tools in the upper right-hand corner of this page (or, if you're viewing it on a cellphone, the bottom of this page) to get your Congressfolk's phone numbers, or use the email/petition links provided below.
H.R. 1459/S. 510, the Ultra-Millionaire Tax Act, would assess a tax on wealth over $50 million for the first time in America -- households and trusts worth more than $50 million would pay 2% on all their assets over $50 million (meaning the tax would leave their first $50 million alone -- but you know they'll whine about it nonetheless!) and then 3% on assets over $1 billion. Sen. Warren (D-MA) says it'll raise $300 billion annually, and given that billionaires alone have amassed another $1.3 trillion in wealth over this last pandemic year, really, this wealth tax ain't too much to ask of people who should be paying 91% of their income to Uncle Sam. The Americans for Tax Fairness Action Fund provides a petition.
H.R. 1352/S. 916, the WATER Act, would start rebuilding our water infrastructure, which would represent a solid investment in one of our most important natural resources, clean water, without which, it's safe to say, we'd have no decent health care in America at all. You can't wash or bathe or disinfect or sterilize with polluted water, after all! Not to mention getting the lead out of all our water pipes will create a lot of jobs for people! I guess Republicans will retort TEH DEFICITZ!!!!!!, but they didn't give one rat's hind quarter about when they were cutting taxes for the rich and for corporations, and whiners always have excuses to avoid doing the right thing. Food and Water Watch provides an email contact tool.
H.R. 1694, the Stop Militarizing Law Enforcement Act, would limit transfer of military equipment from our Department of Defense to local police departments. I've said this many times: you don't need a drone or a grenade launcher to find murderers and drug dealers -- but you do "need" these things, apparently, to put down protests about your own brutality. Particularly if you're Donald Trump and you want to do a photo-op in front of a church with a Bible in your hand! Seriously, the fact that that moment didn't make 75 million Americans turn against him is our shame as Americans, although admittedly it's more their shame as Trump votaries. And just as we shouldn't try to turn police officers into social workers, we shouldn't turn them into soldiers, either. Restore the Fourth provides the email tool.
H.R. 7, the Paycheck Fairness Act, now awaits a full House vote; the bill would, like its previous iterations, give women more tools to fight paycheck discrimination, which (despite the Equal Pay Act of 1965) still runs rampant in America, such that women make about 81 cents for every dollar a man makes, when it really should be a dollar for a dollar. The Paycheck Fairness Act would, among other things, prevent employers from disciplining workers for discussing their pay, since that's usually the only way employees find out they're getting shafted. I bet Republicans defend the "free speech" right of bosses to tell their employees what they can't talk about, but do we really want employers to be able to make their employees accomplices in their wage theft? Daily Kos provides the petition.
Did you know that big corporations can pay large amounts of money in class action settlements when they hurt people -- and then turn around and deduct those settlements from their taxes? Yes, this really happens, and it sure hampers us from being a law-and-order nation now, doesn't it? We generally regard punishments as more effective if they hurt, and don't think it's OK because the injured parties are still getting their money, because when corporations get to use their wrongdoing as an excuse to skimp on what they owe on their taxes, we all become injured parties, because that's money that ain't paying cops and ain't keeping the libraries running. So that $26 billion big pharmaceuticals are planning to pay for keeping good Americans addicted to opioids will wind up being yet another windfall -- for them. Penn PIRG provides the email tool, if you don't call your Congressfolk.
Finally, the National Whistleblower Center helps you tell your House Reps to strengthen the whistleblower protections in the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement (or FIRREA) Act. Currently the law caps whistleblower rewards, which means more whistleblowers won't come forward, and the CARES Act just gave away a couple trillion bucks of our hard-earned taxpayer money -- quite a lot of "small business" money went to national restaurant chains! -- so we've got a more immediate incentive to root out corruption. Don't let your Tea Party uncle describe whistleblowing as a "way for scammers to make money," because whistleblowers go through absolute hell for years while the courts evaluate their complaint -- they usually never work in the same field again, and more than a few don't work at all. They deserve our support.