Testimony for Oregon House Bill 2001

Oregon’s House Bill 2001 would re-legalize “missing middle” housing across the state (previously). It’s in committee right now, and they’re accepting testimony on the bill. Here’s what others have said. And, after the break, here’s what I just submitted!

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What we need: more social innovation

The reality is that no one is more concerned about the impact of AI on society than the people who are building it. Almost always, the more someone knows, the higher his or her concern level is.

Some might ask, “Isn’t it their fault? Aren’t they the ones building the technology that is going to replace workers?” But technologists, VCs, and entrepreneurs are simply doing all they can to push their companies and products forward. It is not their fault that the gains are being concentrated in the hands of a very few, and it’s nearly impossible for them to know and account for the downstream social and economic impacts. It’s OUR job—that is, it’s the responsibility of our government and leaders to account for the impact of innovation on human well-being.

Unfortunately, we are decades behind. And we need to speed up fast.

One investor said something to me on Tuesday that struck me as profound. “At this point, we don’t even need much more technological innovation. We could be busy for a long time just applying the tech we already have. What we really need is much more social innovation.” He’s on to something. He’s a good man who is supporting my campaign. And there are many others like him.

Andrew Yang – Yang 2020

In-person interactions are highly underrated

Casual human interaction gives you lots of serendipitous opportunities to figure out that the problem you thought you were solving is not the most important problem, and that you should be thinking about something else. Computers aren't so good at that. 

What I’m thinking about this election season

In the interest of having my thoughts written down and expanded upon somewhere, here I go!

I voted Hillary Clinton predominately because I think Donald Trump is a whack job, unfit for President, and that Hillary better represents my social values. Going into Election Day, even though media coverage leaned strongly towards Hillary, my thinking was that I wouldn’t be surprised if Trump won. And then he did, and I was surprised, but not really.

Some people close to me are in the minority groups subject to Trump’s hate speech (LGBTQ, non-white). Other people close to me probably voted Trump, although I haven’t yet talked to them about it directly.

I’m a registered Independent, and would consider myself socially progressive, fiscally conservative, and politically libertarian. In less contentious political arenas, I voted Kate Brown for Governor of Oregon, no to Measure 97 (increased corporate income tax), and yes to Tualatin City Council term limits.

I don’t think Trump won because he’s a racist, misogynist, and bigot. I think he won for the same reasons the congressional approval rating is at 13%, voter turnout was 55% (a 20 year low), and I myself have been largely politically apathetic for the majority of my voting career. Most Americans have lost faith in the US government — they don’t think their elected politicians are effective representatives of their interests.

I don’t think most Trump voters are ignorant, hateful, etc. Given the divisive state of affairs in this country, the only path forward is respect, mutual understanding, and compassion. I’ve been sharing op-eds from Trump supporters because I think it’s important to listen to their stories. I’ve also found these articles illuminating:

This morning, my wife and I attended service at West Hills Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, my first time at church in years. Reverend Tracy gave an amazing sermon titled “Compassion and Action“. The audio will eventually be posted to that link, I think.

Oregon health exchange technology troubles run deep due to mismanagement, early decisions

Oregon health exchange technology troubles run deep due to mismanagement, early decisions. Great level of detail on how exactly Oracle / Cover Oregon has managed to misuse $90 million to date, and not ship a functional product. Good capital J journalism from the Oregonian.

NSA slides explain the PRISM data-collection program

NSA slides explain the PRISM data-collection program. “Through a top-secret program authorized by federal judges working under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), the U.S. intelligence community can gain access to the servers of nine Internet companies for a wide range of digital data.” Oh my god.

Avery Durable View Binder, 1 Inch Rings, White, 1 Binder (17012) by Avery

As a wife and mother, I LOVE this binder. It keeps me in my place, allows me to get dinner ready on time, AND only costs 72% of the more masculine version. Some people might think it’s sexist, but sheesh, I’m not binding my feet, just my brain. Extra bonus, if you sit on it just right, it can act as an effective method of birth control! Full disclosure: I submitted this under my husband’s account, with his full permission. He is the head of our household, and the owner of the binder.

Avery Durable View Binder, 1 Inch Rings, White, 1 Binder (17012)
by Avery