See and Save This Running Tally of Donald Trump’s Conflicts of Interest as President

This OTYCD post originally appeared in January 2018.


See and save this running tally of Donald Trump’s conflicts of interest as president.


Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) was sounding the alarm bell about Trump’s potential violations of the Constitution’s Emoluments clause before he took office.


They were the ones who brought suit against Trump for violating the clause. (The case was dismissed in October 2017, with the judge essentially saying that CREW did not have standing to sue, and only Congress could decide what an Emoluments violation looks like.)


Because Trump refused to divest from his business empire as president, CREW has continued to document potential violations.


Trump Inc: A Chronicle of Presidential Conflicts lays out a timeline of problematic actions that date back to January 25, 2017.



See it here, and please bookmark it for future reference.




Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!



Here also is the main website for CREW:




Donate to CREW’s work:




Like CREW on Facebook:




Follow it on Twitter:




Read about the CREW vs Trump lawsuit:


https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/volokh-conspiracy/wp/2017/10/01/the-emoluments-clauses-litigation-part-5-problems-with-the-complaints-in-crew-v-trump/?utm_term=.f54660353677  (This is an opinion piece)

http://joshblackman.com/blog/2017/10/20/analysis-of-oral-arguments-in-crew-v-trump/ (This is a lawyer analyzing the oral arguments in the case)




Invite a Friend to Come With You to Marches

This OTYCD entry originally posted in July 2017.


Are you going to a protest or a march in your area? Invite at least one friend to come with you.


First, please read the post titled Learn to Welcome People to the Movement, Period, Full Stop:



Part of your power is the power to encourage others to join you in protest. If you’re going to any of the marches this month, make a point of inviting others to come with you. If you’ve already invited people to come with you, try to add someone who has never come to a protest march before, or hasn’t come to one in the Trump era.


Be prepared to offer extra help. Do they need a ride? Do they need money for lunch or snacks? Do they need cold-weather gear? See what you can do to remove whatever’s standing in the way of their participation.


It’s not about offering someone an engraved invitation. It’s about using your power as someone your friend respects and trusts for good. You matter, and they matter. Going to protests matter. Join forces and do so together.


Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!



Support the Heather Heyer Foundation

This OTYCD entry originally posted in September 2017.


Support the Heather Heyer Foundation, a non-profit set up in the name of the counter-protester who died in the motor vehicle terrorist attack in Charlottesville. 


Heyer was the sole fatality in the attack, which took place on August 12, 2017. She was 32 years old. The last message she posted to social media before her death was “If you’re not outraged, you’re not paying attention,” and that message is at the top of the foundation page, which is bordered in purple, her favorite color.


The foundation provides scholarships and funds to people who are passionate about positive social change, as Heather was. Scholarships will go primarily to those seeking degrees or certifications in the fields of law, paralegal studies (Heyer was a paralegal), social justice, social work, and education.


See the web site for the Heather Heyer Foundation:



Donate to the Heather Heyer Foundation:



Send letters of support to the HHF:



Learn how to apply for the annual scholarships in her name for paralegal studies (deadline is February 15):



Read a moving piece about Heather Heyer, the last day of her life, and how her friends remember her:



And here’s another strong one, published by the Guardian in October 2017:



Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!


Keep a Journal

This OTYCD entry originally posted in July 2017.


Keep a journal, for the sake of your future self.


When the Trump administration is over–and really, it will end–you’ll be surprised how quickly you’ll forget what life was like. You’ll question whether things were that tense, or that intense. You will struggle to remember what it was like to have three to five bombshell news stories to break in one day and have that be normal. You will forget what it’s like to feel like you’re living in a Dom Delillo novel. (We had been living in a bad John LeCarré novel until a young woman named Reality Leigh Winner was arrested for leaking documents. That’s when we shifted to living in a Dom Delillo novel.)


Anyway. You’ll forget what life was like because, to some extent, you will want to, and you will need to. Living under Trump is goddamn exhausting. When it ends, you’ll need to reassign a whole mess of neurons just to give them a much-deserved rest (if you don’t, they might short out on you, so yes, please, do rest your battered brain when the time comes).


But once you’ve had a chance to heal, you’ll need to periodically remind yourself what living under Trump was like. That’s where your journal comes in. If you’re not already keeping one, please start. It can be on paper, or online. It can be public or private. But commit to writing a dated entry at least once a week.


And when you do, try to note just how weird and screwed up these times are. Be honest about what you’re seeing and feeling, and why. Name your emotions, and describe them in detail. Write exactly as much as you need to write and no more, whether it’s two sentences or two chapters’ worth of observations. Refine it if you must, but it’s best if you just disgorge your thoughts and let them stand, and keep doing it, consistently.


Writing this journal will help your future self remember what this time was like, and it will revive your passion to resist when we no longer feel the need to capitalize the first letter of that word.


Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!


Read George Lakoff’s ‘Don’t Think of An Elephant! Know Your Values and Frame the Debate’ 10th Anniversary Edition

This OTYCD entry originally posted in June 2017.


Stop whatever it is you’re doing, get a copy of the 10th anniversary edition of Don’t Think of an Elephant! by George Lakoff, clear your schedule, and read it. If you already own it, reread it and refresh yourself on it. Do not stop rereading it until you are fully fluent in its concepts. If you are fluent in its concepts, buy and give the book to someone else who isn’t.


Lakoff is a cognitive scientist and linguist. He knows what the rest of us know all too well: left-leaning folks suck at messaging. Unlike the rest of us, he has solid ideas about how to fix it.


In one slim, elegant volume, Lakoff lays out what the right-leaning folks are doing successfully; why they are successful; and what we can learn from them.


Best of all, he shows how left-leaning values are American values and gives us all hope that we can reclaim the national debate by reframing the national debate. It’s doable. It won’t be easy, but it is doable.


While there’s too much to summarize, a big thing to remember is to flatly refuse to embrace and repeat language popularized by right-wingers. Using their language validates the screwy ideas they embody. We need to devise and repeat our own language,  and it can’t just be a mess of talking points–it has to spring from an authentic, cohesive worldview. Conveniently, Lakoff shows how the left does in fact have one, and he talks about how to articulate and defend it.


This is a direct order: Read Don’t Think of an Elephant! and make it the engine that drives your activism.


Buy the 10th anniversary edition of Don’t Think of an Elephant! Know Your Values and Frame the Debate through Powell’s (this is the 2014 edition):




Read Lakoff’s blog:



Like him on Facebook:



Follow him on Twitter:



Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!


Help John Oliver Keep Up The Great Work By Subscribing to HBO

This OTYCD entry originally posted in June 2017.


Support the work of John Oliver and his team at Last Week Tonight by subscribing to Home Box Office (HBO) and telling HBO that you signed on specifically to get his show.


Comedian John Oliver, alumnus of Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show, has done powerful and impressive work before and since the election of Donald Trump. If we manage to save net neutrality, he and his #GoFCCYourself campaign will deserve a big slice of the credit.


While the 2016 presidential campaign was still live, Oliver called attention to the madness of the presidential primary process and asked us to reserve February 2, 2018, as the day to ask our legislators to fix it.


He’s aimed his guns at income inequality, payday loans, the rank injustices of the prison system, student debt, civil asset forfeiture, and dozens of other vital issues.


You’ve learned a lot from him, admit it. So forgive us for asking, but do you watch his segments for free online, or do you subscribe to HBO?


If you don’t, well, it’s past time for you to subscribe to HBO. And when you do, please go out of your way to tell HBO that you signed up specifically because it runs Last Week Tonight, and you want Oliver and his team to carry on with their good work.


Sign up for HBO, with or without cable:



Once you’ve done that, contact HBO and tell them you subscribed expressly to support John Oliver and Last Week Tonight:



Follow Last Week Tonight on Twitter:



Like the show on Facebook:



Follow John Oliver on Twitter:



Read about Last Week Tonight‘s #GoFCCYourself campaign and how effective it’s been:


John Oliver Calls For FCC Website Flood Over Donald Trump Plan To Kill Net Neutrality – Update





Read about how the efforts of John Oliver and Last Week Tonight have boosted other worthy anti-Trump and pro-democracy causes:




Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!


Believe It: You Matter, Part VI: Be Like Danica Roem

Believe it, you matter: Be Like Danica Roem.


If the election of November 2016 jolted you into treating democracy more like a part-time job, you’ve since realized how tedious and trying it can be. It certainly can feel like work, and some parts will feel like work no matter how you approach them.


Some aspects of democracy can be flat-out nasty. Consider what Danica Roem faced when she ran for a seat in the Virginia state legislature in 2017. She was a first-timer transgender woman Democrat going up against Bob Marshall, a 13-term Republican incumbent who introduced a state bill to bar transgender students from the bathrooms of their choice, and who styled himself his state’s “chief homophobe.”


Yes, really.


And he was a raging jerk to her, too, refusing to debate her and deliberately using the wrong pronouns when discussing her. He produced campaign ads that attacked her transgender identity.


Roem beat that raging jerk. Soundly. By nearly nine points, all told.


Her opponent did not mention her in his post-election Facebook post.


Once it was clear that Roem had won, journalists asked her about Marshall.


She had every right to drop the boom on him, to scorch him, to rain garbage upon him.


Instead, Roem said:


“I don’t attack my constituents. Bob is my constituent now.”


And with those words, she proved that the best person won.


In her 2016 speech at the Democratic Convention, former First Lady Michelle Obama counseled, ‘When they go low, we go high.’


Roem did exactly that. Roem is the living, breathing embodiment of the power of Obama’s words.


You are human. Life is tough, and politics is doubly so.


But Roem is just as human as you are, and at the moment when she could have unburdened her anger on her opponent, a man who did everything he could to make himself her foe, she showed kindness and grace and held her hand out to him.


Be like Danica Roem.



Read more about Roem’s race and her spectacular win:




Read about Michelle Obama’s 2016 speech at the Democratic convention:



Subscribe to One Thing You Can Do by clicking the button on the upper right of the page. And tell your friends about the blog!