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Congratulating herself for sticking her thumb in the eye of working people. Mario Tama / GETTY IMAGES

Impeach President Joe Manchin: Democratic leadership has yet to find a way to deal with the senior Senator from West Virginia, who today stopped up the Senate vote on Biden's coronavirus relief package because he wanted to give less relief to unemployed people, according to the New York Times. Right now the feds give the unemployed an extra $300 a week to live, but that benefit ends on March 14. Leadership wanted to boost that to $400 a week. Manchin said naw. In response, leadership worked out a deal with Manchin to keep the added benefit at $300 a month but to also extend it out to October. Manchin originally said okay, but this afternoon he said naw again. About 10 minutes ago, Manchin just agreed to a $300 weekly benefit through Sept. 6. Happy Labor Day, you little freak.

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U.S. Senator shows working people what's what: Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema tapped Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell on the shoulder, strutted up to the Senate dais, and then gleefully voted against an amendment in the COVID-19 relief bill to raise the federal minimum wage to a paltry $15 per hour in the middle of a respiratory virus outbreak that knee-capped the service industry. She joined seven other white Democrats in voting against the bill, but none of them put as much of a pep in their step as they thumbed down the proposal. Her colleague, Senator Mark Kelly of Arizona, voted in favor of the amendment.

People keep comparing Sinema to the late Arizona Senator, John McCain, who famously did a big thumbs down to kill the full repeal of Obamacare in 2017. But in 2014 McCain voted to kill a proposal to raise the minimum wage to 10 whole dollars an hour, so he can stay dead.

We turn now to AOC for commentary:

We could see a similar level of disregard for working people right here in Washington: Senate Democratic leadership scheduled a floor vote on the latest version of the capital gains tax for this Saturday at 10:00 a.m., and this week there was some trouble brewing. Rumor had it that Seattle Sen. Reuven Carlyle was concerned about the bill's emergency provision, which would enact the bill immediately (though it would take two years to stand up the infrastructure needed to actually start imposing the tax) and insulate the tax from a statewide referendum. When I asked Carlyle if he had a problem with that provision, he dodged the question, said he planned to vote for the bill, and added, "My policy priority is ensuring that the revenues are used primarily for meaningful tax reform and to directly benefit low and middle income residents." Luckily for Carlyle, the Senate's version of the bill, which skims 7% of profits on stock cash-ins over $250,000, devotes the $500 million in annual revenue to lowering taxes and to child care. But if you want to give him some extra encouragement, you know where to find him.

All that said: Sen. Steve Hobbs just attached an amendment to the bill that would repeal the emergency clause. With only three Democratic Senators openly opposed to the tax (Sens. Mullet, Van de Wedge, and Sheldon), Dems will have the votes to pass bill. Though some some questions remain about Sens. Hobbs and Cleveland, who haven't responded to requests for comment on their position, a source confirms Dems will have the votes Saturday. (It would be weird for them to go to the floor without the votes, but weirder things have happened.) All that said, I bet the bill only passes if that Hobbs amendment also passes.

NAACP demands WA senators pass credit scoring bill in its original form: In a letter sent earlier this week, the regional branch of the oldest civil rights organization in the country demanded that Washington state senators vote for the original version of a bill that would ban insurance companies from using credit scores to set car and home insurance rates. The practice fleeces the poor to subsidize lower insurance costs for the rich, and ends up hitting Black and brown people hardest. Rather than just pass the bill, last month Democrats and insurance lobbyists gutted it to nothing, allowing "for the continuation of this racist practice," wrote Gerald Hankerson, president of the NAACP.

China stomps on Hong Kong's democracy, again: After two years of protests to preserve democracy in Hong Kong, today the authoritarian capitalist country announced a plan to take control of HK's elections. One measure would "require all candidates standing for Hong Kong's assembly to be approved by a committee of members loyal to Beijing," reports the BBC.

Percy's on the move: The Mars rover took its first little drive around the Jezero Crater, the ancient lakebed where it landed a couple weeks ago. The Mars mission leader told Al Jazeera the robot was operating "flawlessly." After this test drive, Percy will either "head for an ancient river delta to collect rocks for return to Earth a decade from now," or perhaps risk a "tougher" route in order to check out "intriguing remnants from that once-watery time three to four billion years ago."

People facing eviction don't have the right to an attorney: A proposal from Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant to fix that wild injustice passed 3-1 out of committee yesterday, no thanks to Councilmember Alex Pedersen, who voted no. The bill will likely see a full council vote on March 15, according to the Seattle Times. The Legislature is also considering similar legislation, though that bill would only provide attorneys for "those making less than 200% of the federal poverty level, or about $53,000 for a family of four, and it wouldn’t go into effect for a year." To give you a sense of the power imbalance we're dealing with here, "the American Civil Liberties Union estimates that 90% of landlords have legal representation in eviction proceedings, while fewer than 10% of tenants do."

Do you own “Betta Buddy” brand Marimo moss balls? If so, then stop what you're doing and boil them right now. Then clean your fish tank thoroughly. King 5 reports that the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife discovered "at least a dozen zebra mussels" in the moss balls at a Petco in Seattle. When these little shellfish get into the water, they multiply like crazy and fuck up the whole habitat. If they get in the creek behind your friend's house, they'll cut up the bottoms of your feet. And if they get into the dams and stuff, "officials estimate it could cost more than $100 million a year" to clear them out.

Cuttlefish passes marshmallow test: I feel sort of bad for picking on mussels, who, after all, are just trying to survive, so as penance I'll give props to this cephalopod, who "passed a cognitive test designed for human children," according to Science Alert. The cuttlefish proved its ability to delay gratification by skipping crab for breakfast on the condition of getting shrimp for dinner. The science magazine notes that "some primates can delay gratification, along with dogs, albeit inconsistently. Corvids, too, have passed the marshmallow test."

Amazon extends tentacles deeper into the health care world: The trillion-dollar company expanded its telehealth app to 21 other states, though it's unclear if its "newly expanded service will continue to be limited to Amazon employees," the Seattle Times reports. The app lets Amazon employees talk to doctors and book appointments.

Speaking of health: Here's Dr. Duchin with your COVID-19 update.

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A new newsstand!!!!!!! Capitol Hill Seattle Blawg reports on the grand opening of Big Little News, a new "newsstand and bottle shop" in the neighborhood. The place "carries magazines, periodicals, beer, wine, champagne and other small sundries and is boasting 'over 250 foreign and domestic magazines, newspapers and zines' at its opening."

Leaving on this note: I love this weepy lyrical breathy shit so much I can't even stand it, but only when it's done as well as Adrianne Lenaker does it. Enjoy the clouds this weekend. Dream of the desert.