Jason's Journey to Bitcoin and His Mission to Make the World a Better Place
This is Jason, the Community Manager at NOAH. Learn more about Jason and his mission to make the world a better place.
Hi! My name is Jason, and I'm the Community Manager at NOAH. I've worked in various fields over the years, from customer service to package delivery, and little by little, they all led me here. As a Bitcoin hodler with a passion for teaching, I'm grateful beyond words for the opportunity to help so many of you board the ark and find refuge from the fiat flood!
Working in the Bitcoin space is about much more than just having a job or even progressing in one's chosen career path. As sensational as this may sound, the truth is that we're changing the world by ushering in a new paradigm of liberty, personal responsibility, and hope. This may be difficult for some people to understand, especially those who are new to this space or are on the outside looking in. Had I not been prepared by many experiences since my childhood to recognize Bitcoin for what it is, I would have mistaken it for a Ponzi scheme or, at best, a mildly interesting technological experiment for geeks.
The first significant experience I'm aware of that prepared me for Bitcoin was when I was seven. I went camping with my dad as part of a multi-generational family tradition: The 7-Year-Old Campout. In the morning, as we repacked our tent and cleaned up some garbage left by ourselves and campers before us, my dad taught me something that his dad had passed to him on his 7-Year-Old Campout: "Jason, wherever you go, make that place better than how you found it." I had never thought of that concept before, and I remember considering the implications of what would happen if everyone followed that advice. In the decades since, I've learned that life isn't so simple, but that lesson instilled a deep desire to make the world a better place and leave a legacy behind that would last for generations.
As the years went by, I looked for opportunities to make every place I went better than how I found it. Of course, I was far from perfect with that, but the desire was always there. Since I was raised in a Christian household, I decided as a teenager that one of the best ways to make the world better than how I found it would be to serve as a missionary. I believed (and still do) that the Biblical message of hope, redemption, and love would be the best thing I could teach anyone, so the least I could do would be to sacrifice a couple of years of my life and share that message with as many people as I could.
When I was old enough, my church assigned me to serve throughout California's San Joaquin Valley area. At first, I was easily frustrated when people expressed their lack of interest in what I believed would benefit them most. But, I eventually learned how to tolerate and even appreciate others for their differences, and that lesson has served me well when telling others about Bitcoin. It even played an important part in convincing me to give Bitcoin a chance when I stumbled upon it, but more on that later.
After my mission, I did the typical things expected of responsible children: I found work, I got married, we had children, and we eventually bought a house in northern Georgia. For a long time, I didn't know what I wanted to do for a career, so I often struggled with finding joy and satisfaction in any job I had. After the 2008 financial crisis, I became increasingly concerned with global political and economic trends, so I dove down many rabbit holes to better understand the condition of the world we live in and how it got this way. Though I couldn't have known it at the time, the puzzle pieces that would eventually prepare me for Bitcoin were all coming together. Only one major part remained.
Taking the Orange Pill
I first heard the word “Bitcoin” in early 2014 when it was briefly mentioned in a YouTube video that warned the viewer to avoid it—it was a “scam.” The video gave no further explanation, so I just assumed that Bitcoin was some new version of the old Nigerian Prince scam, and I promptly forgot about it. About a year later, a friend referred me to a book called The Creature From Jekyll Island by G. Edward Griffin, and I listened to it while commuting to and from work each day. I finished listening to it in July 2015, and it armed me with a solid understanding of the Federal Reserve and how it and fiat money are at the core of most of the world's current problems. Only a couple of days after finishing that book, my boss tasked me with finding news articles about the economy that he could discuss on his radio show. At the time, I was doing secretarial work for a local business that helped its clients prepare for retirement. While searching for articles on MarketWatch, I stumbled upon one mentioning Bitcoin in its title. When I saw it, my immediate reaction was: “What? How is that still a thing?” I scrolled past it, intending to strike Bitcoin from my mind again, and searched through other articles.
But then, several thoughts flew through my mind: When I was a missionary in California, didn't I agonize over how closed-minded some people seemed to be? Just because I wanted to tell them something new and unfamiliar? Isn't this Bitcoin thing something new and unfamiliar to me? Am I being a monumental hypocrite by not even looking into it a little? And didn't Einstein once say, “Condemnation without investigation is the highest form of ignorance”? At that moment, I felt deeply ashamed of myself, so I scrolled back up, clicked on the link, and read what turned out to be a concise and uninformative article about Bitcoin's recent price movements. Then, unsatisfied, I resolved to do more research at home and during my downtime at work until I felt like I understood it enough to know whether or not to condemn it.
As I searched through articles, message boards, and YouTube videos, I found the most helpful information from Bitcoiners like Andreas Antonopoulos, Tone Vays, Adam Meister, and someone who went by the pseudonym “Vortex.” Unfortunately, there weren't many Bitcoin books available then (and I would have been too stingy to buy one, anyway), so I had to sift through all the information I found and carefully separate the signal from the noise.
- Actual footage of me getting orange pilled
After about two weeks of using most of my free time to learn about Bitcoin, something clicked. I suddenly realized that Bitcoin and its underlying principles could fix the political and economic problems I had been seeing in the world. I understood that fixing the money fixes the world because it takes the control and issuance of money out of the hands of corruptible human beings, including those in our governments and central banks. I immediately began using Bitcoin as a savings account. I started regularly buying some with any extra money after each paycheck, regardless of its price (even though I didn't learn about Dollar Cost Averaging until several years later).
The Neverending Rabbit Hole
In early 2017, I got a new job as a FedEx delivery driver, allowing me to listen to Bitcoin podcasts and audiobooks daily at work. After some time, the voice of Guy Swann read all the best Bitcoin articles to me, I began listening to great works like The Bitcoin Standard and Inventing Bitcoin, and I was able to keep up with recent Bitcoin news and developments. In addition, I was involved in the Blocksize War, and I turned my old Macbook Pro into a Bitcoin node so I could support the UASF.
While listening to the audiobook of The Bitcoin Standard, I discovered a new reason to love Bitcoin, in addition to the economic and political revolution it unleashes: the effect that Bitcoin has on our time preference. Bitcoin doesn't just fix things from the outside-in by separating money and state. It also reorients our desires from the inside-out and teaches us to care more for things that truly matter most in the long run. My efforts as a missionary all those years before were driven by a desire to help people improve their lives in this way, and now I realize that Bitcoin is a tool that can incentivize us to make such changes on our own.
- The Bitcoin rabbit hole truly never ends.
It has been a wild ride for me down this crazy rabbit hole! I left FedEx in August of 2021 for medical reasons, and life was pretty difficult for my family and me for a few months. But, as with Bitcoin, the bear markets of life are for building, so I set up a Bitcoin meetup near me in Chattanooga, TN, while I looked for full-time work. I heard about NOAH in February of 2022 from a BTC Sessions episode of Why Are We Bullish and then volunteered to help them at the Miami Bitcoin Conference the following April. After the conference, they asked me to join them as NOAH's Community Manager, which brings us to the present.
My dad told me to make every place I go better than I found it, and Bitcoin and NOAH are helping me do just that. On 27 June 2022, my dad passed away just a couple of days before his 61st birthday after battling brain cancer for about a year. He was a titan in the computer gaming industry and a loving husband and father who worked hard to make the world better than how he found it. I intend to follow the legacy he left behind. Thank you, Dad, for teaching me such invaluable wisdom and setting me on the right track decades before I found out where it would lead.