Long story short: tell Joe Manchin to stop Joe Manchining; write a letter-to-the-editor favoring filibuster abolition; tell your Congressfolk to pass the Peace Corps Reauthorization Act, the Broadband Justice Act, and a resolution of disapproval overturning weak Trump-era methane emissions rules; and tell Spotify to give up its creepy surveillance scheme. Use the tools in the upper right-hand corner of this page (or the bottom of this page, if you're on a cellphone) to find your Congressfolks' phone numbers -- or use the email/petition/letter-to-the-editor tools in the links below. And good hunting.
Well, Joe Manchin's really done it this time, not only announcing he'll support no effort to "eliminate or weaken" the filibuster, but that "the time has come" "to usher a new era of bipartisanship." "Bipartisanship" with the party that opposes any and all good proposals and tries to overthrow governments and rewrite voting rules when election results don't go their way? How about "no"? Future historians will point to this moment as the moment Republicans captured the House and Senate in 2022 -- unless we act! Mr. Manchin's phone number, as you likely know by now, is 202.224.3954. Now that he's provoked two action alerts in one week, I'm starting to think he wants to be Donald Trump. No one on Earth should want to be Donald Trump. Even Donald Trump should look in the mirror and say, "wow, I don't want to be that guy."
In a related development, Common Cause helps you write a letter-to-the-editor about the need to get rid of the Senate filibuster. You enter your zip code and see a list of local newspapers to which you might write, and then Common Cause provides a set of talking points you might use to write your letter. Don't fret that Republicans will one day get to impose their will on Americans, because guess what? They do that now, precisely because they exploit the filibuster. Next they'll put holds on bills and demand a physical quorum to turn the lights on and off, but they'll look like little whiny-ass babies when they do that. It would help if Democrats would point to them and say see, they don't want to pass automatic voter registration, that's why they're acting like little babies. But we'll continue to do that if they don't.
The National Whistleblower Center helps you tell your Congressfolk to support the Peace Corps Reauthorization Act, not merely because the Peace Corps is generally a good thing, but because the bill would create protections against discrimination and retaliation for whistleblowers. That would have helped Sara Thompson in 2010 after the Peace Corps gave her the anti-malaria drug mefloquine, which our own military won't use because it's too dangerous; Ms. Thompson had no recourse, because our Peace Corps would have simply fired her, and now she suffers from mefloquine toxicity. And remember: whistleblowers ain't out for an easy buck, because after they've suffered through years of harassment and unemployment after they blow the whistle on wrongdoing, ain't no easy bucks ever coming again.
BroadbandJusticeAct.com helps you, as you might guess, tell your Congressfolk to pass H.R. 1904, the Broadband Justice Act. The bill would essentially subsidize broadband as a public utility in public housing -- a thing poorer working families might well need, given that so many folks work and go to school over the internet during a pandemic -- and it might be a good first step toward a national broadband service. If you're worried that Big Gummint would oppress you with a broadband service, just remember that plenty of big private corporations already do that (and for an example of that, see the last paragraph below). And if you're worried that your taxes would subsidize someone else's broadband, don't worry, because our tax money subsidizes plenty of things you use, too.
Here, at last, a resolution of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act that would roll back a Trump-era regulation! EDF Action helps you tell your Congressfolk to roll back the Trump EPA's methane regulation, which actually increased the amount of red tape our government would have to hurtle to regulate methane. They said Donald Trump wasn't a conservative -- and they were right! I mean, don't conservatives think more bureaucracy is a bad thing? In any case, methane pollutes our air and packs a bigger climate-change punch than coal -- and not for nothing, but the methane emissions that big drilling corporations vent into the atmosphere represent energy we can't use and (on public lands) royalties our government can't collect. So, what's good about more methane leakage? No, CEOs getting lazier and fatter isn't a "good."
Finally, Stop Spotify Surveillance helps you tell Spotify to abandon its plan to spy on your conservations in order to "better" target music and ads. And here you thought the future would be full of solar panels and cures for intractable diseases and peoples of the world getting along! No, it's full of big corporations trying to get you to buy more stuff, and with Spotify's filing for a patent using voice recognition software, it's also about spying on you to do it. All that fear of government spying we had in the '60s seems so quaint now! It isn't, of course, and we must still fight government spying wherever we see it, but we must also fight corporate spying, too, particularly if our government isn't going to control corporate power on our behalf.