End the duopoly

The Pandemic Is Exposing the Cruelty of America’s Workhouse Economy


Congress has now resoundingly failed to reach an agreement to extend COVID-19–related relief and benefits for millions of Americans facing the cruelest economic calamity since the Great Depression.

Even if lawmakers do forge some kind of arrangement in the coming days, the sluggishness of America’s withered state bureaucracies will ensure that whatever benefits do arrive will probably be too little — and will certainly be too late.

The $600 a week unemployment checks that have supported so many workers during the pandemic expired just over a week ago and there is, as of yet, no clear timeline for when they might be restored, if indeed they’re restored at all.

Republicans, in true neo-Dickensian form, want the already meager benefits slashed by more than 60 percent.

Ahead of the negotiations House majority leader Steny Hoyer seemed to have already capitulated in spirit, signaling that the Democrats were more than willing to budge on the extension of weekly unemployment benefits. Rounding […]

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