Thinking about the American Rescue Plan this morning and I feel light as a feather. It fills me up with something unknown, something almost unheard of during the past year.
Biden’s $1.9 trillion dollar stimulus package is a sign of that, yes. But it’s something even bigger than hope. This bill shows us a future where we can not only agree with the policies of the federal government but a future where this is an institution that you can admire earnestly, a competent elected body that doesn’t despise you. And goddamn if that isn’t something to be extremely hopeful for.
Just look at what’s in this bill:
- Extends unemployment benefits
- $1400 checks to folks who need it most
- Emergency paid leave for 100 million people
- 15% increase in food stamp benefits
- Expands child tax credit
- Forgiven student loan debt (not a part of this bill) will be tax free (if it is forgiven in the future)
- Tax increases on the mega wealthy and closing corporate loop holes which will increase federal funding by $60 billion
- Billions of dollars in loans and grants to help small businesses
- $350 billion for state, local, and tribal governments
- Education funding to help schools reopen safely
- Housing funding (like 20 billion in rental assistance programs and billions of dollars in funding helping the homeless)
- Funding the COVID 19 vaccine rollout
- Helping pension funds not go insolvent
- Mass funding for transportation
- Debt forgiveness for farmers
- Billions of dollars for cyber security with $200 million set aside for the U.S. digital service
- A ton of healthcare improvements
This is what a functional, healthy, and kind democracy looks like. And it’s worth reminding ourselves every day from now until the midterms that not a single Republican voted for this bill.
Behold! My newsletter—sent infrequently—about new things that I’m working on. Every so often it’ll contain notes about web design and publishing things that I’m interested in, too.