It’s time to hit the phones for the stimulus bill.  Calls are running at 100:1 against.  Yes, it’s not that good a stimulus bill, I’ve said so myself, but it’s not a case of scrapping it and starting over, what looks likely to happen is that it gets badly watered down with bribes to Republicans and "moderate" Democrats like Ben Nelson to get it through.  As Our Future noted in their action email, this probably means changes like:

-Giving corporations a 30% tax cut, instead of investing in clean green energy that will put people to work.

-$3.1 trillion in tax cuts for the wealthy that we know simply don’t work to create jobs.

-Less help for states that will be forced to lay off workers, instead of funds to retain police and teachers.

Let’s be really clear on this.  The rich got their bailout with TARP, 700 billion, they’re already getting tax cuts in this package, and it looks like the way the proposed bad bank is going to be done is hundreds of billions or even trillions more of bailout for rich people.  What the stimulus is is the only money that regular people; that you, are likely to see.  This is whether your State has to to cut teachers, whether there’s health care for people who lose their jobs and whether there’s a cop or firefighter to come when you call. 

Even more, while I can’t say that passing the stimulus bill will prevent a Depression, I can say that the more it’s watered down, the more likely a Depression becomes.  That’s probably what Republicans want, since it would mean a better chance of electoral victory for them (what Ben Nelson and other "moderate" Dems are thinking, I have no idea.  I assume they’re just stupid enough to think tax cuts work despite never having done so for 30 years).  

So, please, hit the phones and let your Senators know that you expect the bill to pass with no further watering down or gifts for the rich.  The Congressional Switchboard operator is at 1-866-544-7573. Remember, be polite, but let them know where you stand.

(List of Senators who need particular attention, below the fold):

Snowe (R-ME)
Collins (R-ME)
Bayh (D-IN)
Lugar (R-IN)
Martinez (R-FL)
Bond (R-MO)
Feingold (D-WI)
Murkowski (R-AK)
Nelson (D-NE)
Specter (R-PA)
Voinovich (R-OH)
Grassley (R-IA)

Ian Welsh

Ian Welsh

Ian Welsh was the Managing Editor of FireDogLake and the Agonist. His work has also appeared at Huffington Post, Alternet, and Truthout, as well as the now defunct Blogging of the President (BOPNews). In Canada his work has appeared in and BlogsCanada. He is also a social media strategy consultant and currently lives in Toronto.

His homeblog is at