More than four decades of neoliberal economic policy has transferred wealth upward and flattened workers' wages. Former Goldman Sachs managing director Nomi Prins notes that so far the bulk of COVID-19 bailout funds have gone to big banks and large corporations, outstripping recovery funds for working people by a ratio of 3.5 to 1.
While some European governments are subsidizing about 80% of workers' salaries, thus avoiding mass layoffs and bankruptcies, Americans are struggling to obtain unemployment benefits, with many facing permanent job loss.
The U.S. needs to realign our moral, social and economic priorities to be responsive to the people, instead of serving corporate lobbyists who buy our elections and Congressmembers. We have the resources to prioritize people's needs. Our leaders need the political will.
The recently organized Movement for a People's Party is promoting a "People's Stimulus" and carrying the demands to our congress members again this Saturday July 25. The COVID-19 pandemic has magnified the need for a minimum floor of protections for people. Therefore, 6 demands of the People's Stimulus are:
1. Defund excessive police budgets and divert funds to social services
2. Medicare for all
3. Monthly $2,000 cash payments for all – a basic minimum income
4. Cover payroll to protect small business jobs
5. Suspend rent and mortgage payments
6. Suspend debt payments including student loans and credit card loans
Some of these measures have been introduced in Congress.
Even if we cannot visit with legislators, we can call, write or email. A single toll-free Capitol switchboard number can access all Congress members - 866-338-1015.