H.R. 5675/S. 3242, the Safeguarding Americans’ Private Records Act (or SAPRA), would roll back many of the worst offenses of the notorious USA PATRIOT Act. It would, for example, end NSA hoovering of your private data, prohibit warrantless collection of your browsing and search histories and your geo-location data, and would sunset the National Security Letters program which the FBI has used to get information without a court order. Note very well words like "warrantless" and "court order" in the previous sentence; passing SAPRA would not "hamstring our ability to fight terror," but would merely make law enforcement follow our laws and our Constitution in fighting terror. Hate to pile on, but if we stopped treating people entirely like commodities, we'd have a lot less terrorism. Sure, we'll always have some nutjobs, but let's not create more of them with tax cuts for the rich and corporate tax cuts and mass incarceration, shall we? The Center for Rights and Dissent helps you tell your Congressfolk to protect our privacy rights by passing SAPRA.
Meanwhile, H.R. 5050/S. 2833, the Veterans and Consumers Fair Credit Act (or VFCA), would extend the protections our soldiers and veterans enjoy from predatory lenders to all Americans. The bill would cap annual interest rates at 36%, so payday lenders couldn't trap good Americans in a death spiral of debt with loans that wind up having 400% interest rates. Banksters will no doubt complain that we just won't allow them to make money anymore, but nobody puts a gun to your head and makes you become a payday lender! I suspect folks become payday lenders because they see it's easy money. Besides which, lenders can still make money if the don't gouge their customers; we know this because veterans already enjoy the protections of the bill, and some states have passed similar protections, and is our economy in the toilet? No, it is not -- in fact, banksters continue to do quite well a dozen years after crashing our economy. Hence US PIRG helps you tell your Congressfolk to protect all Americans from predatory lenders by passing the VFCA.
Finally, if you've missed previous opportunities to tell our Consumer Product Safety Commission (or CPSC) to ban the inclined baby sleepers that have led to over six dozen baby deaths, then Consumer Reports still helps you do that. The CPSC will take public comments on the matter until the end of February, though I have some difficulty imagining what pro-inclined sleeper comments you could write. I guess it would be priceless to learn that some stooge of the inclined baby sleeper lobby commented that banning inclined baby sleepers would be "the nanny state at work"! I suppose they'll say a ban is too extreme, that our CPSC should give them time to work out the kinks, as it were, but I would have a couple of things to say about that. One, the corporations making the sleepers knew for years that their sleepers were killers but did nothing about it. Two, if it were your baby, you wouldn't want it to happen to anyone else's baby. Three, there are other ways to put a baby to sleep -- ways that will not result in the baby's death, no less!