No headlines say this. A few lines in some of the financial papers hint at it, explaining why every rideshare and gig delivery company just took a massive stock hit. Frankly, when it comes to hard news, it’s tough to go wrong with the financials.
On Wednesday the 5th, President Biden’s Department of Labor issued a reversal for the Trump-era “final rule” that defined most gig workers as non-employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act. In an interview, Labor Secretary Marty Walsh explained that this was designed to make gig workers eligible for the benefits everyone else gets. In reality, what it’ll do is force the contracting companies to limit worker hours, particularly during slow periods, so they aren’t suddenly required to pay overtime for someone who’s just sitting around doing nothing. For customers, it’s going to be just that much harder to get a ride at odd hours or to get food delivered.
It’s highly unusual for a new president to address Congress within his first year, much less his first hundred days. With a near-deserted hall (thanks to COVID) in a fortified building surrounded by heavily armed riot police and not a few National Guardsmen, tonight’s address made history in several ways.
What wasn’t unusual was the content. Although it was delivered in an almost informal, folksy style, we heard exactly what we expected to. The tone was optimistic, and the message was clear: Biden laid out his agenda for the coming months, and he expects to make it happen. How, exactly, is another question entirely.
On Monday, the second Trump impeachment trial in the Senate is scheduled to begin.
(I know; just when you thought he was finally gone, right? Wrong. Trump is back in the headlines for another few weeks — and it’s a good thing for everyone. But more on that later. -Editor)
In order to prepare for the upcoming outcomes of these events, there are a few aspects of the proceedings that you should be aware of going into this so you can adjust your expectations. That way, there are few surprises and there will be little room for disinformation going forward. The proper correction for fake news is, after all, a strong infusion of the truth.
Congress has been fighting for months over the size of the next stimulus package. Now that the election has been more or less decided, there remains a chance that the lame-duck session might pass something in time for Christmas. But should they, and if so how much?
On the one hand, there’s no obligation anywhere for Trump to concede — not constitutional, not ethical, and certainly not out of self-interest. On the other, it’s genuinely inconvenient — and worse — for Democrats, particularly Uncle Joe.
So what’s up? What should happen right now, and how much should the rest of us care?
Much as Gore did in 2000 — albeit far more loudly — President Trump is refusing to concede the election. Legal teams have been mobilized in several states to draw attention to certain practices which, viewed objectively, are at least questionable. But does this mean Trump still has a chance to win? Why would he challenge the results if he didn’t?
It’s complicated. (You knew I was going to say that.)
It’s been a long night of vote-counting, and the numbers are still trickling in. Tentatively, TNFN believes that the Republicans will hold a bare majority in the Senate, the Democrats will keep the House, and Joe Biden will probably be our next president — after a long, painfully drawn out struggle over places like Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and potentially Arizona and Nevada. Some states, it’ll take days to count the mail-in votes, and that’s the way it should be. It means the system is working.
And that’s the news, the morning after Election Day.
It’s coming down to the wire, and there’s a ton of nervousness out there about who will win the election. Yes, Uncle Joe has a serious lead in the polls, but The Donald has been shown to be making gains among the undecideds — and we must remember that Clinton too led in the polls in 2016.
After all is said and done, it’s not the popular vote that will decide the election, nor should it be. It’s the Electoral College.
It’s election time again, and the Get Out The Vote drives have begun. Rock The Vote is observing isolation protocols, presumably having raves on Zoom. Michelle Obama has brought the cast of The West Wing together for a reunion tour — virtually, but still. And the memes blaming non-voters for our terrible times have gone (heh!) viral, popping up on every page but mine.
See, I don’t think we really need to get out the vote, folks. I think if we do, it’s actually a bad thing. Let me tell you why.