Happy birthday, Social Security!
There’s a lot that’s misunderstood about Social Security -- whether we’re talking about myths around how it was originally passed and who it was supposed to cover, up to confusion today about how robust or well funded it is. Yet it is the most effective anti-poverty policy in American history, the most popular thing government does, and it offers a roadmap toward a more progressive country. Understanding it couldn’t be more important today, particularly with the possibility that Democrats could retake control of the government in 2020, with an opportunity to implement a new New Deal. (“Green Deal” has been making the rounds lately.)
So I’m excited to say that The Truth About Social Security, published today, is the latest book from Strong Arm Press. The author, Nancy Altman, is perhaps the country’s foremost expert on Social Security, but don’t let that scare you: she’s also an engaging and smooth writer. Her first book, called Social Security Works, was terrific.
I just checked, and it’s already ranked 1,125 on Amazon, which is pretty impressive for a 400 page book on the history of Social Security. (And yes, Amazon is evil, I agree. You can also get it on Smashwords or at your local bookstore. If your bookstore doesn’t have it, complain and tell them to order it.)
Social Security turned 83 today. Here’s to another 83 years!
Good for Elizabeth Warren: She’s demanding answers from the Pentagon about its role in the slaughter of children in Yemen. This war has to end.
Polls are closing soon in primaries around the country soon. (Or, depending on when you read this, polls have closed.) The race I care about the most (though it’s so hard to choose) is in Connecticut, where Jahana Hayes -- who grew up in the Berkeley Heights housing projects near Waterbury, got pregnant at 17 and still managed to graduate, then went on to become 2016 National Teacher of the Year -- is battling for the Democratic nomination in a House race. The House needs more people like her.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, MoveOn and the local Our Revolution have endorsed her opponent. What is a working class candidate supposed to do against those odds? Here’s my story with Rachel Cohen on that.
There are also primaries in Minnesota, Wisconsin (where I think Randy Bryce might actually lose to Cathy Myers, but it should be close) and Vermont, which is poised to nominate a progressive trans woman, Christine Hallquist, as the Democratic nominee for governor. Or, at least, she’s running on a progressive platform.
Bryce is the steelworker whose viral ad against Paul Ryan raised him millions, but Myers is also good and running a strongly progressive campaign.
I probably won’t bother your inbox tonight with final results because if you really care that much, you’ll be following it. But in the meantime, check out the book!