I'm scheduled to appear on CNN at 3:30pm EST to discuss the House's extraordinary vote to reject the $700 billion Wall Street bailout. What I'm going to say is pretty simple: it's clear that Congress is facing a full on revolt from both the Right and Left - the very revolt that I predicted in my book, The Uprising. No longer is this a populist revolt merely scaring Wall Street and Washington - this is a populist revolt that has, to quote Markos, crashed the gate, and it represents a real victory for the progressive movement and voices who said Hell No.
Those who are surprised by this turn of events just haven't been paying attention to what's going on out in the country - they haven't been paying attention to, for instance, the social survey research showing rising rage against both our corrupt government and Corporate America. During my 3 month book tour, I faced a wave of skepticism from the Establishment media about my thesis. This earthquake on the floor of the U.S. House should end that skepticism once and for all.
Just as I said in the book that it's not clear what is going to come out of the Left-Right grassroots uprising throughout the country, it's not clear what is going to come out of this uprising in Congress. Will Democratic leaders tack to the hard right, load the bill up with corporate tax cuts and pass this bill with only Republican votes? Or will they actually be leaders of the Democratic Party, make this bill a vehicle for the kind of New Deal-style investments and regulations that are necessary to start rebuilding this country, and pass this bill with full Democratic Party support?
This is the question moving forward. I've laid out the top 5 reasons to vote against this bill and go back to the drawing board. That article outlines what should be the basic conditions for any bailout, including a speculators tax, re-regulation, economic stimulus, bankruptcy law reform and aid to homeowners. No amount of tinkering with Paulson's atrocity is going do the trick. They have to go back and start from scratch.
Make no mistake about it - this is not a moment of celebration, it is a moment for increasing pressure. The Uprising is waiting for a serious response - will Congress step up to the plate? Contact your member of Congress right now and demand he/she goes back to the drawing board.
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