A Multi-prong Approach To Solving Current Problems
The WPA was ended in 1941 after completing massive amounts of infrastructure. I know that if you re-instate this department in a way that prevents subcontracting, you will create millions of jobs while rebuilding and repairing our crumbling infrastructure.
Veterans can be hired in droves for job like these. Part of the reason why WPA was created in the first place was to give jobs to veterans of WWII when they came home.
In addition to repairing roads and bridges, I am asking you to consider building America’s first high speed electric trains. Japan’s bullet trains and most of Europe’s are electric.
To handle the NIMBYs, you could build the trains right alongside interstates. For example, I 70 (East-West), I 80 (East-West), I 35 (North-South), I 75 (North-South).
I think I-95 would be very tricky safety-wise and making it a subway would be idiotic with sea levels rising daily. (Not recommended)
Why build high speed electric train in the middle of the country?
Because that’s where people need the most support. There are plentiful jobs along both coasts.
In “flyover states”, which is incredibly insulting, people either have cars and jobs or they have neither. By creating high speed electric train lines, you would: drastically reduce CO2 (combatting climate change), you would bring access to jobs to millions by connecting the center of the country, and you would be employing thousands of Americans to build and run the trains.
The reality is that our country used to rely on trains and small towns thrived because of trains. Then oil and gas companies bought all the railroads and dismantled them. If you look at what happened after the transcontinental railroad was dismantled, you can see that’s when our country began to splinter.
I suggest the train interiors be made of recycled plastic. Recycled plastics can be made into a type of polymer that is resistant to bacteria. I also suggest that to aid handicapped people, there be recycled rubber on the seats and floors to reduce sliding and help anchor people. There are various types of compostable foam that could be engineered to be used as a safety mechanism in case of a crash. Clearly, someone with an engineering degree needs to design safety mechanisms for a bullet train, but it seems like it would be easy to place canisters of foam in the walls of the train that would deploy harmless foam to cushion passengers in case of impact.
Additionally, installing solar cells on the top of the trains could provide fuel. I’m certain others have implemented this technology as well. Clean green machines.
How to pay for it?
Revoke tax exemption for all religious organizations. They bring in between 75–100 BILLION dollars per year. If they were taxed like non-profits? That would shred national debt and fund infrastructure easily. They do nothing but meddle and support the NRA. These organizations invest in property, not to help the poor, but to grow their church’s portfolio.
Additionally, I think corporate subsidies need to be whittled down to nothing. If they can’t make a profit without government handouts? They should go under.
More on Infrastructure
In addition to building a bullet train system, there needs to be more plentiful housing. Rental housing has no regulation or standards. Market rate in any area can include water pipes breaking and leaking raw sewage all over your kitchen, possums nesting under a bathtub, squirrels in the ceiling, broken windows, HVAC that doesn’t work, appliances that don’t work. I know this from firsthand experience. I was paying $850 in Kansas City. I forgot to mention the regular shootings and failing schools which kept me from having my daughter with me. I’m “lucky” that her father can afford to live in a good area with good schools and no crime or possums.
In these better areas, rent for a two bedroom go for between $1400-$3000/mo. That’s in a suburb of Kansas City. Imagine the costs in NYC, Chicago, LA. Again, without any kind of regulation. More people could be hired to work with HUD and inspect rental properties to ensure consumers aren’t living in hovels for top dollar.
Again, refer to my prior suggestion of taxing all religious organizations to pay for it. 25 Billion dollars a year can pay a lot of employees.
Knocking down old (dangerous, lead filled) low-income housing and having architectural contests for designs that incorporate vertical gardens, solar panels, community gardens, rainwater collection, and wifi would give architecture students and beginning professionals a way to showcase their talents while getting a highly desirable resume bulletpoint.
Hire veterans to construct housing. Much of what military do while deployed is basically build and run a small town. Even wounded warriors can be hired to build housing and have a job they can be proud of. Nobody cares if the hand holding the hammer is prosthetic. I made a short film about the Veterans Community Project in Kansas City. They were recently on Queer Eye. Those guys build tiny homes for homeless vets as transitional housing. That’s just one example of an organization that could partner with HUD (employing people who needs jobs) to get more housing built, and more Americans housed and employed.
I must be clear: I am saying to hire employees through the WPA and NOT use contractors. Republicans handing contracts to their cronies is part of why we’re in this mess in the first place.
Design a national mental health system that is based on science, not prayer. People who live with mental illness struggle to survive each and every day because of shaming and blaming that comes from religious healthcare providers who should have their licenses revoked. Cancer patients get support. Mental illness is just as painful and deadly. Survivors of domestic violence, rape, natural disasters, and war deserve to be supported in finding a path to equilibrium. They deserve a fair shot at life too. Reagan ending mental hospitals didn’t solve the patient abuse crisis. It created a prison system where mentally ill people are dumped until they die.
Today some public official in NY suggested a database for all people with metal illness. Demonizing people who are ill does not solve violence. I had a neighbor who was schizophrenic and nuns would visit her and give her holy water to cure her. I wanted to punch them. The neighbor thought I was afraid of her. I was not. I did what I could to help her and protect her. Shaming and blaming mentally ill people for the acts of violent psychopath men is not the answer, and it endangers them.
Federal standards for Healthcare
Healthcare providers (names of large corporations deleted) should be audited and they should be regulated in such a way that they are using modern technology (HR7 or Fihr, not faxes) to handle patient information, and refill requests. There needs to be federal standards for healthcare organizations that are awarded Medicare, Medicaid, and VA contracts.
I just quit my job at a mail order pharmacy in May of 2019. It is a branch of a large health insurance company, which I will refer to as LHIC.
I was a pharmacy clerk. Very low level.
Issues I want to bring to your attention:
LHIC gets VA contracts and Medicare contracts.
They don’t cover many medications, like insulin.
I watched prescriptions flooding in and the prices rocketing over $1000 for a 3 month supply of Humalog.
Out of pocket.
I read letters from patients begging us for help.
When Chinese manufactured statins were being recalled, I kept filling orders. I kept asking my superiors why we were filling prescriptions that were recalled drugs. I was told to just mind my business and do my job. LHIC took FOREVER to notify patients and stop filling the prescriptions even though they knew there were carcinogens.
They pay employees a pittance. They hire primarily functionally illiterate people because they are desperate and easy to control. They have mandatory overtime. This means they tell you how long you will work overtime and when you will work it, or you will be fired.
There are no sick days, so everyone comes in sick. People barf in their trash cans to try to avoid being written up. I had pneumonia and got written up and placed on a “corrective action plan” for staying home sick and for not driving on ice.
My point? They rule with an iron fist and reports of any kind are harshly reprimanded. People are afraid to speak out when they know something is wrong. This happens at the highest levels. For example:
Erika Zak died on the operating table because of United Healthcare denying coverage for her very necessary liver transplant. They murdered her through negligence, and they do this often.
The workforce company they use is a Russian company that primarily collects data. They control when you work and how your “scorecards” are calculated.
My concern is that the workforce company has access to the system and all of the patient information.
Who is sick, who takes what medication, and all identifiers.
Within LHIC, at least where I was in Overland Park, nobody knows what the other departments are doing, or who is in charge of what. The left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing. At first, I thought it was just disorganization. After being there for 9 months, I know it’s deliberate.
I absolutely know they are gaming the system for profit. Getting state contracts, they get taxpayer money, but they do not deliver the services. Executives pocket the profits while they deny prior authorizations for medicines people have to have to live.
We need to stop them from hurting more people. Perhaps no one else there cares about the sad letters they get every single day. Perhaps it isn’t my problem or my business since I don’t work there now. What LHIC are doing isn’t ethical. It’s wrong, and they are responsible for people suffering.
Here are some examples:
Fair pay laws need to be enforced. All work is valuable and Republican denigration of working class people is an abomination. Whether someone is a nurse, a teacher, a bartender, a cashier- all work is valuable and people need to be paid a living wage. There needs to be more federal policy regarding sick days, and time off.
Healthcare companies, retail corporations, financial institutions and technology corporations all treat workers like they aren’t human. Mandatory weekends, mandatory overtime for less than a living wage is unethical and must be stopped. I applied for plenty of jobs and am unemployed because I won’t give up time with my daughter more than I already have.
No one should have to sacrifice their health, their family life, their kids, and their friends for a job that doesn’t even pay the bills. Yet, most of the country are working one or more of these jobs trying to wiggle through.
Right to Work policies in states need to be abolished. People are being abused by their employers and nobody reports anything because they are afraid of losing everything. Rightfully so. People with money can afford attorneys, and poor people cannot.
Women and People of Color stand ZERO chance of being hired and promoted over a white man, even when they are more qualified for the position. https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/7xdv4y/employers-dont-like-to-hire-intelligent-women
Ageism is a massive problem, especially for women who had children/go back to school after having kids. I have been penalized for my “employment gap” who just turned 12 and is going into the 7th grade. I’m bilingual, educated, tech savvy, creative — and unemployed because of the stacks of biases against women that we all get knocked back by.
I met a young woman who worked in a coffee shop who has a degree, we discussed technology, media and how women just can’t get a foot in the door. We end up taking what we can get because the opportunities simply aren’t there for women.
Instead of “core curriculum,” public schools need to integrate teaching basic tech skills to all students. Some are, but many are failing to do so. Access to the internet after school is a huge problem for millions of students. Until pay gaps and employment for women are addressed? Children will continue to suffer.
The federal government needs to implement free tech training to citizens, regardless of age. How to find teachers who actually know what they’re talking about? Hire millennials. You could potentially offer, say, three options of payment for services. Flat salary, part salary/part student debt forgiveness, or all student debt forgiveness. (Those living with parents might choose that option.)
Learning basic computer skills isn’t difficult. For some, it’s intimidating. Women and older people are treated like they are stupid. They are not. All people need is access and opportunity.
Education in the US needs to be studied and altered to assimilate with modern society’s demands. Hours of operation are archaic and parents struggle to be all and do all. There needs to be more commonsense compromise instead of continuing to rachet up the statistics for heart disease, obesity, and car accidents. Families need more support to be together. Our society has made it nearly impossible unless you are born into wealth and good fortune.
It is time to make changes that serve all people in this digital age and for us to find peaceful ways to coexist.
People need more protection from violence. Period.
There needs to be a clear precedent set for the fact that the Constitution, nor any other legal document, provides for anyone to access to modern technology. Republicans have messed around with the definition of “militia” for decades, helped along by the NRA.
The fact remains, nowhere does any document written by the Framers guarantee access to modern technology for weapons of war.
If SCOTUS is going to use a literal translation, then fine — it still isn’t a supported argument.
If they use a living document argument, then they would also have to acknowledge all of the things that are true if that interpretation is used. Black people aren’t 3/5 and women have equal rights.
They can choose. And, either way — there is no legal support for the argument.
No civilian should be permitted to conceal carry, carry long gun in public, possess bump stocks, or possess more than 3 weapons.
The ATF needs to inspect property of individuals suspected of stockpiling weapons and gasoline. I saw this when I lived in Ohio 2008–2012. There are people with massive arsenals that are in their garages and basements along with many containers of gasoline. Preppers aren’t just crazy, they’re really dangerous. They are far more dangerous than three year-olds at the border who just had their parents ripped from them.
Guns shows need to be shutdown. Selling targets with <public female figure> images should be illegal.
Bump stocks and any other devices used to increase magazine capacity for semi or automatic weapons should be illegal.
The argument that anyone needs these for hunting is patently false.
If they are that crappy at shooting? They need to take up crochet. 10,000 rounds of ammo in a male human’s room is for one use only: the slaughter of groups of people.
White supremacy and hate speech like that from Westboro Baptist Church needs to be outlawed.
Freedom of speech is fine, but hate groups need to be stopped in their tracks NOW.
These psychopaths are obsessed with murder and they are all a major public health risk.
Tax ammunition. Tax all ammunition with a 30–50% federal safety tax. They can have their guns, but tax the ammunition into obscurity.
Ban assault weapons. Period.
The false narrative has been “they’re coming for your guns”. Well, how about if the ATF actually does it? Take the assault weapons. They’re banned. They can have their regular rifles and pistols.
There needs to be extremely harsh federal penalties for rape. I am absolutely disgusted by this garbage in the Republican Party. All of them are trash for being rapist and pedophile apologists. Rapists and pedophiles should get life in solitary. What they do is as deadly as murder. Some victims don’t have the strength to survive the trauma. I want my country to stand with girls and women and protect us all from these psychopaths.
In the first section, I address infrastructure and bullet trains. Using electric bullet train would reduce pollution across the country. Decreasing air travel will decrease noise and air pollution.
Other initiatives that should be implemented are putting solar cells on all government housing and putting energy star appliances in the units.
Recycling should be mandatory for all apartment complexes. People will do it if they have easy access. Many simply don’t understand the stakes.
Bring back PSA’s that are anti-littering. Many people are terrible litterbugs and leave carpets of plastic at festivals, campgrounds, and beaches. Gen X doesn’t because we had Smokey the Bear and the crying Native American guy. Everyone I know remembers those and the guilt worked!
Enforce more noise pollution ordinances. The damage to people and wildlife is ridiculous.
Some of the damage to our oceans is contributed to by human noise levels. Oil companies are responsible for killing many thousands of whales alone.
Loud is killing people. It harms ours brains and increases health risks. People need to find quieter ways to coexist.
Roundup (Glyphosate) should be banned. It is killing the planet.
In the section on infrastructure, I write about building affordable housing. One feature that would help turn the tide on climate change is implementing vertical and roof gardens. Vertical gardens can be planted inside and outside. There are graywater systems that use fish and plants to clear the water.
We should be doing this in NOLA and the Gulf Coast. https://www.bbc.com/reel/video/p07kw1xw/this-is-what-10-years-of-reforestation-can-do
Mangroves and Banyan trees should be planted along the Gulf Coast.
Water conservation efforts must be a high priority.
Planting more trees will reduce pollution and help turn the tide. We need to follow the example of Ethiopia and plant many more trees. https://www.cbsnews.com/news/ethiopia-plants-350-million-trees-12-hours-breaking-world-record-2019-07-30/
Help for pollinators: plant Hyssop and Nasturtium. Hyssop is considered and herb and has purple flowers. Nasturtium can be used as ground cover and has beautiful, bright flowers. These plants are both edible. Butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds love these plants.
The farmers who are at risk after terrible tariff policies could benefit from subsidies for planting pollinator plants as mentioned above as well as fruit trees. The leaves and fruit left to refurbish the soil will bring back fertile soil in addition to helping turn the tide on climate change. After a season of soil replenishment, they could then harvest fruit to sell.
ELECTORAL COLLEGE/TERM LIMITS
I understand there are processes involved, and we need Congress to use them. The Electoral College are spineless cowards who threw our country into a hostile foreign nation’s hungry jaws.
It needs to be dissolved.
There need to be term limits for Senators. Mitch McConnell has been a cancer on our society for some thirty years. It’s a disgrace that cowards stood by and watched, and we have to adjust term limits to make sure this never happens again.
Additionally, it is clear that we need to define rules of conduct for Congress. Republicans nominated nightmare after nightmare for cabinet positions and installed at least one rapist in the Supreme Court. We have to create more clear laws that prohibit white nationalists and white supremacists from holding office.
I suggest using a flat tax system for all income levels of 25%. (People in Scandanavia pay 45%+ in taxes. Half of that for ALL seems fair.) I don’t think there should be a maximum amount paid and then you don’t owe any more. People who make millions don’t pay taxes on most of that.
Death tax should be abolished. Taking a massive percentage of inheritance is really awful. I think capital gains taxes on investments is plenty. Most people don’t have investments. Lucky few get an inheritance. Most get a modest sum and then Uncle Sam demolishes what was meant to pay for kids’ tuitions or other family investments like a home.
As I suggested earlier, all religious organizations should be taxed as non-profits at the least. It’s imperative.
Tax code needs to be simplified. I understand that for whatever reason, Republicans love the IRS. I think downsizing by simplifying the tax code would be far more prudent that slashing social security, education funding, healthcare, and infrastructure.
Corporations should be paying their fair share. CEOs and executives getting massive severance packages after breaking laws and hurting workers is obscene.
Men who run companies like their own private piggy banks should go to prison. The industrial military complex and for-profit prisons are symptoms of our society’s ills that need to be cured by truly altruistic approaches that benefit all of the people, not a privileged few.