October 28, 2018 – Most-Viewed Bills | Congress.gov

October 28, 2018

1. H.R.6 [115th] SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act
2. H.R.5428 [115th] Stand with UK against Russia Violations Act
3. H.R.1 [115th] An Act to provide for reconciliation pursuant to titles II and V of the concurrent resolution on the budget for fiscal year 2018.
4. S.3021 [115th] America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018
5. H.R.1242 [115th] 400 Years of African-American History Commission Act
6. S.756 [115th] Save Our Seas Act of 2018
7. H.R.5515 [115th] John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019
8. H.R.302 [115th] FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018
9. H.R.38 [115th] Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017
10. S.2800 [115th] America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018

Source: Most-Viewed Bills – Congress.gov Resources –

Stock correction comes at bad time for Trump, GOP | TheHill


Third-quarter GDP growth was powered primarily by consumer spending and retail inventories, which typically reflect short-term confidence in the economy. Business investment and capital expansion fell over the past three months, warning signs that the Trump boom could be past its prime.

“It is an actual sugar rush. This is what it looks like when you have a sudden surge of income into households,” said Daniel Alpert, managing partner of investment firm Westwood Capital.

“The economy is overhyped.”

Source: Stock correction comes at bad time for Trump, GOP | TheHill

FCC Commissioner calls public broadband ‘ominous threat’ to First Amendment | TheHill


FCC Commissioner Mike O’Rielly claimed that “municipalities such as Chattanooga, Tennessee, and Wilson, North Carolina, have been notorious for their use of speech codes in the terms of service of state-owned networks, prohibiting users from transmitting content that falls into amorphous categories like ‘hateful’ or ‘threatening,’” citing research by Professor Enrique Armijo of the Elon University School of Law.

There are no well-known examples of public broadband censoring content in the U.S.

“There is no history of municipal networks censoring anyone’s speech,” Christopher Mitchell, a community broadband expert and Director of the Institute for Local Reliance, told Motherboard.

Free-speech advocate the American Civil Liberties Union has advocated for municipal broadband as a possible option for internet service, noting that “strict anti-censorship rules” should be established.

Source: FCC Commissioner calls public broadband ‘ominous threat’ to First Amendment | TheHill

Twitter’s new midterm election page highlights hoaxes and false information | TheHill


Twitter’s new events page for the coming midterm elections are highlighting false information.

The new tool aggregates tweets about politics and the midterm elections, organized in two tabs “Top Commentary” and “Latest” tweets on the matter.

The events page shows many verified accounts tweeting accurate information, as well as unverified accounts tweeting.

But in some cases the tool is elevating tweets peddling incorrect information.

Source: Twitter’s new midterm election page highlights hoaxes and false information | TheHill

Controversial Gab platform faces crackdown after Pittsburgh shooting | TheHill


Gab, a social media haven for far right groups, is facing a crackdown after the alleged shooter who killed eleven people in a Pittsburgh synagogue used the platform to share his views.

Gab has defended itself as “the home of free speech online,” and says it bears no responsibility for the shooting at Tree of Life Synagogue on Saturday.

The company did not delete any of Bowers’s previous racist or violent posts per its free speech policy, which does not moderate most content. That stance has led to neo-Nazis and white supremacists flocking to the site after being barred from other social media platforms and earned Gab criticism from anti-hate groups.

Source: Controversial Gab platform faces crackdown after Pittsburgh shooting | TheHill

2018 midterm elections: Republicans are outspending Democrats 5 to 1 in key statehouse races | Vox


Republicans control more than two-thirds of the state legislatures in the United States, and Democrats are desperately trying to win back some chambers.

Besides trying to make an impact on state policy, 2021 congressional redistricting is weighing heavily on Democrats’ minds; state legislatures have the power to redraw congressional maps every 10 years, and Republicans had the upper hand the last time around.

Even though Democrats are smashing their own fundraising records, they are still falling short of the GOP’s numbers.

The Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (DLCC) has committed to spend $35 million on state races, double what they spent two years ago.

Source: 2018 midterm elections: Republicans are outspending Democrats 5 to 1 in key statehouse races – Vox

Education philanthropy: why the billions spent aren’t working | Vox


My beef, rather, is that improving the American education system, while important, is neither a neglected cause nor a tractable one.

It is a system on which hundreds of billions of dollars are spent annually by diffuse governments whose policies are difficult and expensive to change, where matters of importance are intensely contested, and where interest groups tend to fight each other to a standstill.

And it’s a system where, even after investing millions if not billions in research, we still don’t have a lot of confidence as to which interventions are helpful and which are not.

The views of key actors, notably the Gates Foundation, have tended to shift rapidly on those substantive questions.

Source: Education philanthropy: why the billions spent aren’t working – Vox

Media Matters on anti-Semitism after Pittsburgh synagogue shootings | Vox


In modern history, the idea of Jew as a puppet master, without loyalty to his country of origin — you can really trace that back to The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, published in Russia in 1903.

It was a piece of work — proven to be a forgery almost immediately — purporting to be the meeting minutes of the leaders of the Jewish people, basically speaking like cartoon villains about their designs over the global financial system, subverting the morals of Gentiles, upturning the social fabric of moral culture.

It’s had a really long afterlife — it’s sort of the original fake news, in a sense. A really good case study in how impossible a visceral notion can be to dislodge, even when it’s been comprehensively debunked.

Source: Media Matters on anti-Semitism after Pittsburgh synagogue shootings – Vox

Factbox: Ten years of bitcoin | Reuters


Bitcoin, the world’s first and most famous cryptocurrency, celebrates its tenth birthday on Wednesday.

Its emergence has spawned a multitude of other digital currencies, brought blockchain technology to global attention, and vexed regulators worried about its crime misuse and weakness to hacking.

Source: Factbox: Ten years of bitcoin | Reuters

Is the U.S. still a real democracy? | Reuters


Voters in established democracies are accustomed to going to the polls to choose between parties with competing visions, programs or ideologies. For those who live in countries where freedoms are limited, however, the choice at the ballot box often is not about candidates or issues but about free and fair elections – and even the right to vote. Is the United States heading in that direction?

As Americans prepare to make their choices in the Nov. 6 pivotal midterms, there are substantive issues like climate change and immigration policies that separate the two main parties.

But to an extent that is unprecedented in the post-Civil Rights era, the issue of democracy itself has unmistakably crept on to the U.S. ballot.

Source: Commentary: Is the U.S. still a real democracy? | Reuters