Home2020 Elections3/26 Sanders Admonishes R’s for Lopsided Corporate Welfare in CARES Act; News Roundup and OT

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jcitybone

I’ll move my stuff here and delete my diary

jcitybone

Even Heitkamp had words of praise

https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/03/26/coronavirus-sanders-unemployment-relief/?utm_source=reddit.com

Those four GOP senators argued that an increase in unemployment payments of $600 for several months should not be given to the poorest Americans because it would exceed their paychecks.

Few lawmakers agreed with that position, but perhaps no one opposed it more ferociously than Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.).

Senate passes $2 trillion bill to blunt coronavirus pandemic’s economic impact, as households and businesses gasp for relief

“And now I find that some of my Republican colleagues are very distressed, they’re very upset that somebody who’s making 10, 12 bucks an hour might end up with a paycheck for four months more than they received last week,” said Sanders, waving his arms and pointing at his colleagues as he launched into a fiery speech on the Senate floor on Wednesday night.

Sanders, a Democratic presidential hopeful, continued: “Oh my word, will the universe survive? How absurd and wrong is that? What kind of value system is that?”

He pointed out that the federal minimum wage has not been increased since 2007 and called early GOP proposals to offer low-income workers less money if they lose their job during the coronavirus pandemic a way to “punish the poor and working people.”
Sign up for our Coronavirus Updates newsletter to track the outbreak. All stories linked in the newsletter are free to access.

The senator from Vermont threatened an amendment to the relief bill that would have stripped out economic aid for corporations if Republicans did not kill the plan to throttle unemployment checks for the poorest Americans. Ultimately, the proposal to lower unemployment benefits for poor workers made by four Republicans — Sens. Lindsey O. Graham (S.C.), Ben Sasse (Neb.), Rick Scott (Fla.) and Tim Scott (S.C.) — was defeated.

President Trump and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin worked to convince those senators that the universal $600 unemployment boost would be more efficient than varying supplements by income because that would require the federal government to administer funds through a patchwork of state-run unemployment programs, The Washington Post reported.

But Sanders’s passionate rebuttal, which came in the same week his campaign indicated he would stay in the Democratic race, was widely shared online even after the coronavirus relief package was unanimously approved by the Senate.

“I may not always agree with @BernieSanders but this is @BernieSanders at his very best,” tweeted former North Dakota senator Heidi Heitkamp (D). “You go, my friend!”

Many of Sanders’s supporters joined in the chorus of praise for the critique, saying that his push to defeat the amendment “just saved millions of people.”

humphrey

Don midwest’s comment

“Bernie can’t get things done” has been used for years

another talking point bites the dust

question: have legislators for years not had the bully pulpit on which to take a stand?

orlbucfan

Heitkamp is a former senator. Her words don’t mean crap.

jcitybone

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/03/26/never-seen-anything-unemployment-claims-jumped-nearly-1500-two-weeks

We just got the first piece of government labor market data that really shows—in a breathtaking manner—the impact the coronavirus shock is having on the labor market. The data are last week’s initial unemployment insurance (UI) claims. Initial UI claims jumped from 211,000 three weeks ago to 282,000 two weeks ago to 3.3 million last week. That is nearly a 1500% increase in two weeks. I have been a labor economist for a very long time and I have never seen anything like this. This is a case where a picture is worth a thousand words.

The figure shows initial unemployment insurance claims over the last 50+ years. The spike at the end shows what unprecedented territory we are in right now. Furthermore, this is just the tip of the iceberg. We estimate that by the summer, 14 million workers will lose their jobs due to the coronavirus shock, with significant losses in every state.

232212D1-3E44-40C8-B1AE-F17EBCD3CA5A.jpeg
wi62

Were gonna need a few more rounds of those checks just to get things rolling again Just for the working class and probably extended unemployment as well. Corporate America got more than they deserved the last 2 times. Time to bail out middle America.

jcitybone

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/03/26/looting-america-big-corporations-progressives-appalled-senate-unanimously-passes

Senate Republicans initially attempted to pass a version of the legislation that contained all the benefits for big business while denying direct cash payments to the poorest Americans, but that effort was twice rebuffed by Senate Democrats who demanded stronger protections for vulnerable people.

The final bill would provide a one-time $1,200 means-tested payment to people earning less than $75,000 a year and an additional $500 per child. The legislation would also significantly expand unemployment benefits for a period of four months, a provision that led a small group of Republican senators to temporarily revolt and threaten to delay the bill’s passage.

People who don’t have direct deposit information on file with the Internal Revenue service could face significant delays in receiving the $1,200 payment, Democratic aides warned:

Ultimately, critics said the bill’s benefits for people struggling to cope with the massive coronavirus-induced economic fallout are nowhere near sufficient to match the scale of the crisis.

“Giving a one-time $1,200 check to some families and telling them ‘good luck’ is not going to cut it. It’s like handing them a leaky bucket to deal with a flood,” said Kyle Herrig, president of advocacy group Accountable.US. “And what about the millions of struggling borrowers who don’t know how they’ll pay their next private student loan bill or those who fall victim to predatory lenders during these desperate times?”

“Congress should immediately begin working on another stimulus that ensures the finances of working America are supported as strongly as the balance sheets of corporate America thanks to this package,” Herrig added.

https://twitter.com/hshaban/status/1242876418998108165?s=20

polarbear4
polarbear4

but but technology. can’t a machine spit our address info into a database, which can then print a gazillion envelopes?

jcitybone

https://www.businessinsider.com/kious-kelly-hospital-nurse-dies-trash-bags-2020-3?utm_source=reddit.com

A nurse at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York died from COVID-19 after learning he was infected by the novel coronavirus almost two weeks ago. Protective medical gowns are in such short supply in the Mount Sinai system that some nurses have started to use Hefty-brand garbage bags instead, according to photos on social media.

The New York Post reported that Kious Kelly, an assistant nursing manager at Mount Sinai Hospital in Manhattan, died Tuesday. He was 48 years old.

His sister confirmed his death to the Post, saying that she was told he had been in the intensive-care unit but that he did not think it was serious. The Post did not specify how he contracted the virus.

“We are deeply saddened by the passing of a beloved member of our nursing staff,” Renatt Brodsky, a representative for the Mount Sinai Health System, told Business Insider in a statement. Brodsky did not provide any further details.

jcitybone

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/paloma/the-finance-202/2020/03/26/the-finance-202-banks-win-long-sought-deregulation-in-coronavirus-rescue-package/5e7be6e0602ff10d49ad4bc7/?utm_source=reddit.com

The finance industry will be a central cog in the machine Washington is assembling on the fly to distribute emergency economic relief to contain coronavirus fallout. The sector is also poised to achieve some long-sought policy wins in that $2 trillion package the Senate passed late Wednesday.

Several of the changes trace a straight line from the last economic crisis, when the industry — rather than a rogue pathogen — was the source of the problem threatening an economy-wide meltdown. More than a decade later, financiers are working to make the most of the fact that they are no longer on defense.

And the bill, now facing a Friday morning vote in the House, both eases some of the post-crisis rules imposed on them and restores some federal help they haven’t enjoyed since the throes of that downturn. (See the final text of the 880-page bill here.) Among the industry’s wins:

1. A delay in tough new accounting rules.
2. Lower capital requirements for community banks.
3. The FDIC will once again backstop bank debt.

The bill offers other goodies for the industry on top of the regulatory rollbacks. Banks will be originating loans to small and medium-sized businesses through a $349 billion program the Small Business Administration will be setting up. Credit card giants like Visa and MasterCard could benefit if the Treasury Department looks to them as a “turnkey” option for issuing debit cards to unbanked Americans who need fast access to $1,200 rescue payments, Boltansky notes.

The bill is also notable for what it doesn’t include. Several Democratic priorities to provide consumer relief during the crisis — ideas the industry opposes — didn’t make it into the text. Per Seiberg, those include a proposal to scrap bank overdraft fees; another to impose a 36 percent cap on consumer interest rates; and one to offer free bank accounts, accessible at a bank or the Post Office. “We expect these issues will resurface in the phase 4 bill, which is expectedly to be the next congressional response” to the crisis, he writes.

Meanwhile, the eight largest U.S. banks — a group that includes Bank of America, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, and JPMorgan Chase — announced last week they are voluntarily halting any stock buybacks through the end of the second quarter. They said the decision will free them to do more lending to help country through the emergency.

The move is “too little, too late,” argues former FDIC chair Sheila Bair. “It only applies to share buybacks, not dividends or executive bonuses,” she notes in a Financial Times commentary. “Moreover, it only lasts for a few short months, with each bank free to reinstate buybacks at any time. We should be wary of such voluntary measures given the relentless (and successful) lobbying by big banks in recent years to chip away at capital rules. A longer, comprehensive and co-ordinated central bank-directed suspension of capital distributions is necessary.”

polarbear4

36% interest cap didn’t make it. i thought we already had a lower one that Bernie got through.

36%

orlbucfan

Bet ole Bezos the Borg Bozo is cashing out, too.

jcitybone

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/26/world/coronavirus-news.html#link-3c07cb73

Louisiana is experiencing the fastest growth in new cases in the world, according to one study. Gov. John Bel Edwards said that the current trajectory of case growth in Louisiana was similar to those in Spain and Italy. This week, President Trump approved the governor’s request for a major disaster declaration, which unlocks additional federal funding to combat the outbreak.

The situation in and around New Orleans is particularly acute, with the city reporting 827 confirmed cases as of Wednesday night, more than the total number of cases in all except 15 states. Hospitals are overwhelmed, and critical safety gear is running low.

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