2016 – Arrival

I started and ended 2015 in Boise, Idaho, and in good company both times. The whole year was full of good company actually, like a parallel of the beginning and end of the year, some company was lost and some was gained. The TurnUp team was amazing company even though the actual company didn’t pan out ultimately, and we ended up going our separate ways. The Optibit team was also great company while it lasted. I left them to focus on TurnUp, and as a lesson to make me think twice about my commitments again, they went on to win the MIT Clean Energy Prize and moved out to Silicon Valley. But there was new company to replace the old. I ended up finding a fantastic house (with a fantastic landlord) in west Cambridge to move-in with three of MIT buddies. I became part of a new research team and family with the Sloan Sustainability Initiative, which has been invaluable company for my personal and professional development. I’ve joined the passionate company at Aligned Intermediary for an indeterminate time, and I’ve forged deeper connections with a few individuals, which has become wonderful company all in itself. Whether company lost or gained, 2015 was about change of direction and acceleration.

I see 2016 being about arrival. The year will bring the arrival of a new life, new destinations, new missions, a new president, and old conclusions. With my graduation right around the corner in June, and my brother’s graduation from high school as well, much will be arriving soon. Being in school until now has both taught me a lot and taught me little. It’s taught me about the economic, political, social, educational, and technological systems we have in place. It’s taught me the importance of discipline, diligence, and diversity. It’s taught me to critique the theoretical pros and cons of our society from the vantage point of the “Ivory Tower”, but it hasn’t given me the boots-on-the-ground experience I need to have a rounded viewpoint. It’s taught me little about the value of earning a salary and standing up for a particular set of economic and political values with that salary on the line. It’s even taught me little about the value of my education. Finally putting my education to the test and beginning work is both exciting and scary, but I welcome the arrival in 2016 with an open mind and heart. It’s a new bend in the journey.

2016 will bring the arrival of a new president! Although I haven’t been able to do a full analysis or make a fully informed opinion of my views yet, I do know a few simple rules that would change government for the better, so I’m looking for the candidate that does not represent status quo corrupt government and embodies some of these simple rules. I want to see a ban on lobbying, a simple one vote one tally system counting directly towards candidates and not through some electorate, people with incomes between $25,000 and $250,000 having the same one vote as those earning above $250,000, a cap on political campaign contributions, a flat income tax rate, no tax on businesses earning less than $1M annual revenue, a revenue-neutral carbon tax, and immigration laws that are equally considerate to those who live, work, and die for this country as they are for those coming from other countries. If a candidate announces and brings some of these changes then I will vote for them. This presidential election is going to be a thriller for sure.

My new year resolutions are:

  1. Graduate
  2. Land a cool job
  3. Write in the website once a month
  4. Read one book every other month
  5. Wear more sandals in summer

And as always, I will continue to seek God in 2016. He is the guiding light for us all, and we must continue to find him in our hearts to see his intent in this rapidly changing world around us. Happy new year!

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