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10 things I love about America
I follow the CEO of Replit on Twitter. Replit is a “collaborative browser-based IDE”, which sounds complicated, but basically just makes it much, much easier for software engineers to create code together, and for new software engineers to learn how to code.
His name is Amjad Masad and last Tuesday he shared a picture of his US citizenship ceremony and posted a terrific tweet on “10 things I love about this country.”
I can’t imagine a better way to start the year than by reflecting on our blessings here in America. So please enjoy Amjad’s tweet and then share the top thing you love about America in the comments:
“I landed in the United States 10 years ago with nothing but credit card debt.
After one startup exit, one big tech job, and one unicorn, I genuinely believe that it wouldn't have been possible anywhere else in the world.
Here are 10 things I love about this country:
1. Work Ethic
First thing I noticed was that everyone regardless of occupation took pride in doing a bang-up job, even when no one looked.
I asked people: "why do you pour everything into a job even when it is seemingly thankless?" And it was like asking fish "what is water?"
2. Lack of corruption
In the 10 years in the US, I've never been asked for a bribe, and that's surprising.
When you know that you predictably get to keep a sizeable portion of the value you create and that no one will arbitrarily stop you, it makes it easier to be ambitious.
3. Win-win mindset
People don't try to screw you on deals, they play the long game, and align incentives in such a way that everyone wins.
This is especially apparent in Silicon Valley where you can't underestimate anyone because one day you might be working for them.
4. Rewarding talent
From sports to engineering, America is obsessed with properly rewarding talent. If you're good, you'll get recognized.
The market for talent is dynamic -- if you don't feel valued today, you can find a better place tomorrow.
5. Open to weirdos
Because you never know where the next tech, sports, or arts innovation will come from, America had to be open to weirdness. Weirdos thrive without being crushed.
We employ people with the most interesting backgrounds -- dropouts to artists -- they're awesome!
Weird and innovative people have to put themselves out there, and as part of that, they're going to make mistakes in public. The culture here values authenticity, and if you're authentic and open about your failures, you'll get a second and a third chance.
7. Basic infrastructure
Americans take care of their public spaces. Parks are clean, subways and buses run on time, and utilities & services just work.
Because life can be livable for a time without income, it was possible for us to quit our jobs and bootstrap our business.
When you step foot in the US there is a palpable sense of optimism. People believe that tomorrow will be better than today. They don't know where progress will come from, but that's why they're open to differences.
When we started up even unbelievers encouraged us.
Clearly a cliche, but it's totally true. None of the above works if you're not free to explore & tinker, to build companies, and to move freely.
I still find it amazing that if I respect the law and others, I can do whatever I want without being compelled/restricted.
10. Access to capital
It's a lot harder to innovate & try to change the world without capital. If you have a good idea & track record, then someone will be willing to bet on you.
The respect for entrepreneurship in this country is inspiring. And it makes the whole thing tick.
Because of the character limit, I couldn't caveat the generalities that I made. It's hard to talk about an entire nation without making those. And my experience can be very different from yours. Also, we can do a lot better, and make sure everyone has equal access to opportunity.
Finally, many of the things that I talked about are under threat, largely from people who don't know how special they have it. America is worth protecting, and realizing that progress can be made without destroying the things that made it special.”
On this first workday of the year, what do you love about this country? Share in the comments!
Follow me on twitter: @cenedella
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