The Inaugural Fantasy Energy League’s Official Draft Preview: Game On!In early December, I put out a call to the online energy professionals community to find participants in the world's first Fantasy Energy League. Perhaps I saw the pending end of the 2018 fantasy football season and I wanted something to fill the void, or maybe I was just curious to see who else wanted to approach energy projections from a gamified lens. Either way, I put out my energy-industry bat signal for the Fantasy Energy League only to see my inbox and Twitter feed blow up. People seemed really excited for this idea, and before I knew it I had a full league of 14 teams who were already talking smack (not trash-- this crowd is one committed to minimizing waste) to each other on social media! [caption id=attachment_2894 align=alignnone width=767] Source: Twitter[/caption] So, this article will present a draft preview laying out the exact format and unveiling the teams involved. And even if you're too late to officially join this first season of the Fantasy Energy League, then you can follow along, think about what choices you would make, and see how you'd compare with the teams who are actually participating. Without further ado, let's pump up the high-energy Jock James and get started! (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); League Rules I outlined the general expected rules under which the league would operate in my initial article, but those rules have been refined a bit based on conversation with league members, so they warrant a review. Season 1 of the Fantasy Energy League will center on EIA's State Carbon Emissions Data, an annually released set of data that provides measures of CO2 emissions in each state (and DC) broken out by sector (residential, commercial, industrial, transportation, and electric power). [caption id=attachment_2895 align=alignnone width=1428] Source: EIA[/caption] Each participating team will assemble a roster of five state/sector combinations (e.g., California's transportation sector could be one and New Jersey's commercial sector could be another), and the goal of these picks will be for their roster to demonstrate the greatest decrease in overall carbon emissions from the data released in October 2018 (which represents 2016 emissions) to the data that will be released in October 2019 (representing 2017 emissions). A few restrictions will make this a bit trickier though: Each state/sector combination can only be selected by one team, so once the New Jersey commercial sector is selected by one team then it's off the table for the others (with 14 teams participating, teams will quickly have to get cleverer than just selecting California or other populous states); Each team must have a representative from each of the five sectors in their five total selections (there's no loading up on just one sector that you thought had a great amount of emissions reductions from 2016 to 2017, each pick will be from a different sector); and No team can have more than one sector of a single state (again, this rule will force teams to be a bit creative and strategic in their selections). After some feedback, the Fantasy Energy League will also implement the following wrinkles: Trading Period For a period of two weeks after the conclusion of  the draft, teams will have the ability to conduct trades. Final rosters after a trade need not follow the previous restrictions, meaning teams can trade to end up with multiple state/sector combinations that full under the same state or the same sector. If any teams want to get so creative as to trade an uneven amount of state/sector combinations (e.g., completing a 2-for-1 where one team ends up with six state/sector combinations and the other ends up with four) then that will be allowed as well. But the end goal remains for the total aggregate emissions of a team's rostered state/sectors to drop the greatest amount from one year to the next. Wildcard Percentage Factor Some participants expressed interest in incentivizing the picking of states that make great strides in percentage reduction rather than just absolute reductions. Doing so allows for a deeper dive into dark-horse candidate small states that don't have the opportunity for as large of an absolute decrease. To prompt such selections, there will be a percentage decrease wildcard factor! *Cue game show noises and flashing lights* What this means is that the state/sector from each team that sees the greatest percentage drop in emissions from one year to the next will represent that team's wildcard percentage factor that will inflate their final score. For example, the greatest percentage drop of any state/sector from 2015 to 2016 was New Hampshire's electric power sector dropping from 3.5 million metric tons of CO2 to 2.4 million metric tons, a 32% decrease. If a team had New Hampshire electric power (a small sector selection in absolute terms) on their roster and their team's aggregate emissions reductions were 4.0 million metric tons, then their percentage wildcard factor of 32% would boost their final rating by 32% for a final score of 5.3 million metric tons. That way teams are encouraged to find these hidden gems, but they mustn't forget that the goal of climate policy is to reduce total aggregate emissions. [caption id=attachment_2896 align=alignnone width=519] Source: Obama White House[/caption] Through these selections, teams will essentially be selecting states based on their assessment of how certain energy policy measures, market trends, or technological developments in different states across the country from 2016 to 2017 successfully minimized carbon emissions. As such, the true intrigue of this Fantasy Energy League is to see how different teams value different measures intended to reduce carbon emissions as a sort of referendum on optimal actions to fight climate change. Participating Teams As I noted, we had some immediate interest and jockeying for who will be the favorites to take home the Inaugural Fantasy Energy League title. We have teams rolling seven players deep and others competing as individuals. There are representatives from industry, academia, VCs, and non-profits. Participants stretch from coast to coast. While there's a mix of teams who have previous fantasy sports experience vs. those for whom this competition will be their first foray into that world, notably all teams boast impressive background in the energy field. Let's look at the 14 participating teams to see who they are, where their minds are with this process, and where some natural rivalries might develop... [caption id=attachment_2897 align=alignnone width=720] Source: Konnect Africa[/caption] 1. Energy Innovation Energy Innovation, captained by Silvio Marcacci and anchored by Robbie Orvis and Mike O'Boyle, was the first team lining up at the door to participate and were instrumental in generating some of the online excitement to make this experiment possible. However, it's not that but their organization's deep knowledge of the effects of climate policy (check out my review of the book they recently put out, Designing Climate Solutions, if you don't believe me) that could have them considered heavyweights in this competition. 2. Emission Impossible III: Carbon Protocol If team names are indicative of the strength of a team, then this unbiased Fantasy Energy League commissioner might have to consider this group another favorite. If that wasn't enough, though, captain Adam James and team members Shayle Kann and Andy Lubershane also have clean energy credits that precede them. Given the new wrinkles to the rules came from Adam, I'm eager to see what sort of gaming of the system this team seeks out to try and win it all. 3. Electrowinning Electrowinning is captained by Justin Guay and rounded out by Justin Gerdes, Matt Baker, and Sonia Aggarwal. Justin was a key member in some of the aforementioned Twitter smack talk, so I'd suggest keeping an eye on this team fro how they might try to throw other teams off and sneak ahead. 4. CELI Next, we have a deep-benched team team representing the Clean Energy Leadership Institute, specifically with alum from the Washington DC area, one of the two cities (the other being San Francisco) in which the CELI program has established itself and sought to educate the next generation of clean energy leaders. Mary Shoemaker will captain this team, along with Chase Counts, Mishal Thadani, CeCe Coffey, David McPherson, Gabriel Gordon-Harper, and Amory Fischer. 5. Powerhouse Powerhouse is a venture fund for clean energy, but its entry represents the first of our teams taking on the challenge of the Fantasy Energy League as an individual decision maker rather than a full team, with Zach Rizk carrying the torch for Powerhouse on his own. Will fewer cooks in the kitchen lead to greater success? 6. Dan Meleras Dan Meleras takes the individual competing against full teams even further, proudly standing behind his name as his team's moniker itself. You must think other teams will see this bravado and confidence and be quaking in their boots. 7. GridLab GridLab is a team captained by Taylor McNair and completed with Ric O'Connell. This self-described dynamic duo is behind GridLab, a non-profit that supports advocates and policymakers on technical grid issues. While carrying a head amount of energy expertise, this team notes that they're in Energy Innovation's office enough that they might be able to grab an advantageous sneak peek into their data and draft strategy. Might SpyGate leak from the NFL into the Fantasy Energy League? As commissioner, I'll have to keep an eye on this... 8. New Energy Equity New Energy Equity LLC is the nation's leading end-to-end solar development and finance specialist company, and this group also seeks to prove its value by taking this competition by storm. Captain Steven Chan and his team, consisting of Kevin Corcoran, Jessica Krawczyk, Jack Levenson, Richard Clayton, John Langhus, Dean Eastlake, and Bakary Coulibaly, are surely not short on fire power. But will this melding of the mind spell success for the team? PS-- speaking of smack talk, this team did send a personal message in their pre-draft survey for Emission Impossible III: Carbon Protocol: We love being the underdogs and we're never afraid of a little competition. Shayle Kann-- big fan, also you're going down! 9. The Windy City Steven Brisley is competing as an individual, but he hopes to evoke Da Bears of 1985 and Da Bulls of the 90s to make Chicago proud. With so many iconic sports figures in his hometown, can Steven properly channel them and bring home a championship of his own? 10. This CO2 Shall Pass Another candidate for best name, in my humble opinion, comes from Gilbert Michaud who will be competing as an individual. He is a college professor studying energy policy who is participating as an individual. He is a college professor studying energy policy who is participating in this league to get involved with fellow energy wonks and to feed his thirst for competition. In terms of his competitors, Professor Michaud sees some big fish across the league in Emission Impossible III: Carbon Protocol, CELI, and Rocky Mountain Institute, but as our academic field representative and a fantasy sports nut in his own right he might be the intimidating competitor other teams should far. 11. Kiterocket Renewables When establishing herself for the Fantasy Energy League draft, Deborah Knuckey of Kiterocket Renewables championed that any proper climate policy needs marketing and PR expertise, which she hopes will carry her to victory. In her own words, Deborah is an energy geek and author running a team of great renewable marketers and was drawn to this competition as another in many efforts to envision the future and visualizing good energy policy. While she claims she's just here to make the other teams look good, might she emerge as a dark horse candidate to take the title? 12. ELECTRIFIED Planes, Trains, and Automobiles This team, captained by Matt Stephens-Rich and rounded out by Zach McGuire and Marie McConnell, is made up of workers behind the Smart Columbus program that deploys smart technology in transportation and rapid electric vehicle adoption. Based on their background and team name, you'd better believe they have an eye on the transportation sector as one of their early picks. Whether or not tipping that off to their opponents plays out for them, we'll just have to wait and see. 13. Rocky Mountain Institute Another venerable name in the energy and environment communities, Rocky Mountain Institute throws its hat int he ring via captain Leia Guccione. This team plans to come out swinging, noting their team holds both fantasy football championships and renowned energy-forecasting clout, while they're also no strangers to competitive side-wagers or social media smack talk (privately calling out Energy Innovation and GridLab as their prime targets). While the prestige and reputation of RMI be enough to keep down some of the upstarts and individuals vying for the same goal? 14. Clarion Energy Women in Power A late entry in this contest may take the other competitors by surprise, but Clarion Energy Women in Power-- captained by Jenn Runyon-- seeks to show that it's better late than never to sweep in and take what's theirs. [embed]https://tenor.com/view/rumble-wwf-fight-gif-5453432[/embed] Source: Tenor Kicking Off Next Steps The next step is to complete the draft, which will take place over email during the week of January 21 and will last as long as it takes each team to fill out its roster. After the teams are selected, I’ll publish a follow up article reviewing how the draft went and allowing the world to see the selections. At that point, the real debate can begin within the participating teams and from outside watchers to weigh in on who drafted the best (and, well…we have a lot of really smart people participating, but someone’s got to come in last!) So, what do you think, energy community? Do you see any favorites among the participants? Any colleagues that you’re rooting for? Be sure to let me and them know in the comments and on Twitter! (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); If you enjoyed this post and you would like to get the newest posts from the Chester Energy and Policy blog delivered straight to your inbox, please consider subscribing today.  To read more insights into the energy industry, see this state-by-state analysis of the U.S. energy mix,  this post on the U.S. Wind Turbine Database, and this article on how split incentives create issues in the energy field.   About the author: Matt Chester is an energy analyst in Washington DC, studied engineering and science & technology policy at the University of Virginia, and operates this blog and website to share news, insights, and advice in the fields of energy policy, energy technology, and more. For more quick hits in addition to posts on this blog, follow him on Twitter @ChesterEnergy.
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Starting Healthy: Foods to Avoid During BreakfastHealth & fitness writer Harper Reid tells us how to make the most of the morning meal. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and the food we put into our body during this meal will determine our physical and mental functioning throughout the morning. Try to make breakfast a calm and relaxed affair, full of a variety of appetising and healthy foods and drinks. Failing that, here are some foods to avoid at breakfast:  White toast Everybody loves buttered toast with their breakfast. However, the processed flour in standard white bread is full of refined carbohydrates which quickly convert into sugars, giving you a short-lived high followed by an energy crash. The white flour refining process removes nearly all the vitamins, minerals, and nutritious fibre in the flour, leaving you with a virtually useless food substance. Instead of white bread, try whole-grain spelt or rye bread, which have a lower glycemic index. This means energy is released into your body steadily, rather than giving you a sugar high. If you want a vegetable-based toast alternative that’s still crunchy and delicious like toast, try this cauliflower pizza crust recipe!  For toppings, try some smashed avocado, sundried tomatoes, or nut butter to add important nutrients to your breakfast.  Cereals Packaged cereals often contain lots of added sugar, colourings, and preservatives. Read ingredients carefully and don’t be fooled by terms like ‘maltose,’ ‘evaporated cane juice,’ and ‘brown rice syrup,’ that really mean sugar. Choose wholegrain cereals, preferably organic and with no additives. You can even make your own cereal at home – you will know exactly what has gone into it. Instead of using cows’ milk, add soy or nut milk to cereal for added vitamins and minerals.  Pancakes and waffles  Again, these are usually made from white flour or, worse still, from a prepared packet mix. Enjoy healthier versions of these breakfast favourites by making them at home with whole wheat, oat or soy flour. Accompany them with a small fruit salad made of multi-colored fruits, rather than syrup.  Porridge  The instant packet version of this breakfast staple is full of sugar and unwanted additives. Make your own with whole oats, a few raisins, cinnamon and a touch of honey – delicious, full of roughage and useable energy!  Muffins and bagels Many store-bought baked goods are mostly sugary calories, so try to steer clear of them.  Fry up Bacon and sausages often contain harmful preservatives, additives and nitrites. Make a healthy version of this traditional breakfast staple by grilling lean back bacon, tomatoes, and mushrooms. Better still, substitute the bacon for a veggie sausage. Boil or poach eggs (a great source of protein) instead of frying them and make a vegetable-filled omelette using capsicums and onions. Omelettes look and taste delicious and are a great way to get children to eat more vegetables.  Juices and smoothies Packaged juices usually contain lots of sugar and unwanted additives. Make your own with a juicer or blender as smoothies are a great way to get more fruit into your body. When you create your own blends and consume them immediately, you will get the full benefits of the vitamins and minerals, which quickly diminish after blending. Don’t add sugar, as fruits already contain plenty. Add unsweetened yoghurt for thickness and ground flaxseed to keep you fuller for longer, or protein powder for extra energy.  Nothing  Skipping breakfast is the worst idea. Even if you are trying to lose weight, your weight loss program should always include a balanced breakfast. A breakfast filled with whole food sets you up for a productive day and helps you avoid the temptation to snack before lunch. If possible, eat lunch as your main meal and have a light, early supper. Recent studies suggest that the longer the period from supper to breakfast, the more your body is able to  digest your food and get on with the important job of cell repairs.  Harper Reid is a freelance writer from Auckland, New Zealand who is passionate about fitness and healthy living. She enjoys swimming, hiking with friends and spending her quiet time on meditation or yoga. You can find more of her work on Tumblr.  
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LARRÍNAGA, Tulio | US House of Representatives: History, Art & ArchivesAn engineer by training, Tulio Larrínaga, Puerto Rico’s second Resident Commissioner in Congress moved into politics when Puerto Rico became a U.S. territory. Like his predecessor, Federico Degetau, Larrínaga used the Resident Commissioner’s ministerial powers and his own political savvy to encourage and cajole U.S. politicians to reform the island’s civil government. In particular, Larrínaga sought to modify or eliminate aspects of the Foraker Act that infringed on Puerto Ricans’ popular sovereignty and limited the Resident Commissioner’s ability to represent constituents. “Everybody on the floor of this House knows that it is only due to the courtesy of the Committee on Rules … not by any law of Congress, that the Commissioner from Porto Rico is allowed the privilege of the floor,” Larrínaga declared.1Tulio Larrínaga y Torres Vallejo was born in Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico, on January 15, 1847. He attended the Seminario Conciliar de San Ildefonso in San Juan. Larrínaga studied civil engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, from 1865 to 1868 and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia in 1871. Among Larrínaga’s projects were the preparation of a topographical map of Kings County, New York, and his work for an engineering firm involved in the construction of Grand Central Station in New York City. Returning to Puerto Rico in 1872, Larrínaga served as a municipal architect of San Juan. He also helped found Ateneo Puertorriqueño (the Puerto Rican Arts and Sciences Association) in 1876 and served as the head of the English department in the cultural center. He was a member of the Royal Economic Society of Friends of the Nation and the insular library commission. In 1879 Larrínaga married Berthy Goyro Saint Victor. The couple raised Tulio, Jr.; Berta; Concepción; and two other children.2Larrínaga is credited with building the first railroad in Puerto Rico—a short line that ran from San Juan several miles south to Rio Piedras—and with introducing American rolling stock to the island. He served for 10 years as an engineer of the Provincial Deputation, working extensively on the construction of San Juan Harbor and on roads elsewhere on the island. He also directed the works of the 1893 Puerto Rico exposition as a member of its jury. Cayetano Coll y Toste, a prominent historian and writer, observes that Larrínaga’s engineering successes benefited from his ability to maneuver in political circles, reminiscing that he was “able to gain the good will of Unconditional Party leader Pablo Ubarri, who exercised great influence over the island administration.” “One can go far with friends in high places,” he added. Larrínaga first became involved in politics when Puerto Rico achieved autonomy from Spain in 1897, joining the Partido Liberal de Puerto Rico (Liberal Reform Party of Puerto Rico). When Puerto Rico came under American governance in 1898, Larrínaga served as the subsecretary of public works and as assistant secretary of the interior under the autonomous government.3In 1900, along with Luis Muñoz Rivera and others, Larrínaga founded the Partido Federalista de Puerto Rico (Federal Party of Puerto Rico), which advocated Puerto Rico’s joining the United States as a territory but retaining control of local institutions. (In 1904 Larrínaga would join the Partido de Unión (Union Party), the successor to the Partido Federalista, which promoted local autonomy while reforming political ties between the United States and Puerto Rico.) During the initial debates over the structure of a civil government for Puerto Rico in early 1900, Larrínaga came to Washington with a political delegation advocating for home rule. He testified before the Senate Committee on Pacific Islands and Porto Rico regarding S. 2264, a precursor bill to the Foraker Act. Larrínaga called for free trade between the United States and Puerto Rico, advocated for territorial status, and discussed universal male suffrage.4 When he testified before the House Committee on Insular Affairs, Larrínaga argued that Puerto Ricans “expect the American Government will give them a Territorial form of government; that they will have some Congressional representation of one or two members,” citing Puerto Rico’s voting experience with Spain as a precedent.5 During the deliberations on the Foraker Act, Larrínaga told the Ways and Means Committee, “Puerto Rico needs a civil government even more than free trade. The people want to feel that they have become in a tangible manner attached to the United States and not a mere dependency.”6Larrínaga began his elective career as a member of the insular house of delegates for the district of Arecibo in 1902.7 In 1904 he won election as Resident Commissioner to the 59th Congress (1905–1907); he served a total of three terms, winning by a comfortable margin each time. His opponent in 1904 was Republican Mateo Fajardo Cardona. Larrínaga’s Union Party polled 62 percent against the Republicans’ 38 percent. Larrínaga was re-elected to the 60th Congress (1907–1909), again by 62 percent, against Republican candidate Ledo Francisco Paria Capo. Two years later, he polled 64 percent of the vote against Republican Roberto Todd and Socialist Santiago Iglesias, a future Resident Commissioner.8 Larrínaga interpreted his party’s electoral domination as proof of Puerto Ricans’ displeasure with the provisions of the Foraker Act, particularly the appointed executive council, which often undermined acts of the popularly elected insular house of delegates—which Unionists had consistently pressured Congress to revise or repeal. Such electoral results, he noted, show “very clearly that our people are more determined … to stop the encroaching tendency of that upper house or executive council.”9During his tenure in the House, Larrínaga served on the Committee on Insular Affairs, created to oversee civil government and infrastructure issues pertaining to the United States’ territories overseas, including the Philippines, Guam, and Puerto Rico.10 Unlike his predecessor, Federico Degetau, who was hamstrung by his lack of floor and speaking privileges, Larrínaga enjoyed these privileges from the outset of his congressional career and was well versed in advocating for Puerto Rican interests in Washington. During his first term, in the 59th Congress, Larrínaga submitted six bills and two petitions. Three of the bills dealt with reforming the structure of the civil government as defined by the Foraker Act. He also submitted a bill to amend the law limiting the number of Puerto Ricans who were admitted to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and a bill to expand improvements to San Juan Harbor.11 Additionally, Larrínaga appealed to President Theodore Roosevelt “for a greater measure of self-government” for Puerto Rico. “The people of Porto Rico were being treated as if they were not capable of self-government,” Larrínaga told Roosevelt, and the acts of the house of delegates “were practically annulled by the executive council.”12In an editorial about self-rule in Puerto Rico, Larrínaga criticized the Washington Post for describing council members of San Juan municipalities as “self-styled” politicians. “Those representatives have been selected by the most genuine representation of the people of Porto Rico, for the members of the municipal council … are elected directly by the vote of the people, as well as the house of delegates,” Larrínaga countered. He described his election as a mandate to liberalize American rule on the island by reforming the Foraker Act. “The people of Porto Rico sent me here to Washington by the largest vote ever cast in the country to tell Congress and the American people that we wished to elect our senate as we elect the members of the house of delegates, so that we could make our own laws and manage our own local affairs,” Larrínaga wrote.13 In the press and on the House Floor, Larrínaga took exceptional offense to the executive council, first, because he objected to the council’s selection by the President of the United States instead of by popular vote; and second, because he objected to the council’s extraordinary power to alter measures approved by the popularly elected house of delegates. In a floor speech, Larrínaga stressed that for “many years we have been putting up with all the encroachment of our masters in that executive council … we have cooperated with our local government to the verge of humiliation; but the time has come … when we are no longer disposed to allow them to go beyond the limits fixed by the organic act … for the genuine representation of the people in the lower house.”14 During the second session of the 61st Congress (1909–1911), chairman of the House Committee on Insular Affairs Marlin Olmsted of Pennsylvania submitted H.R. 23000 on Larrínaga’s behalf, a bill designed to replace the Foraker Act with a more generous system of Puerto Rican self-government. Whereas the Foraker Act was a “temporary act” that became permanent, the new bill would provide a permanent government for the island. House debates on the bill demonstrated Larrínaga’s more forceful tack, emphasizing the shortcomings and anti-democratic tendencies of the Foraker Act while appealing for greater self-sovereignty on the island. Larrínaga compared his bill to the Constitution of the United States. When asked “whether I preferred the present organic act of Porto Rico to this bill now before the House … with the provision [in this bill] giving us collective citizenship … my answer … is I do,” he said. Larrínaga noted that Chairman Olmsted believed “that the upper house under the present Foraker Act hindered the lower house from enacting any legislation whatsoever.” Larrinaga continued, “He had the honesty to say … what the Porto Ricans have been saying and protesting against every day for the last ten years; that you have not given to the people of Porto Rico any power whatsoever to enact their own laws.”15 After extensive debate, the bill passed the House on June 15, 1910, and was referred to the Senate Committee on Pacific Islands and Porto Rico, where it died.16In January 1906, Larrínaga submitted to the House a memorial petition from the municipal councils of 52 towns in Puerto Rico. The petition requested that voters continue to be permitted to elect the members of the house of delegates by popular vote and that the presidentially appointed executive council be replaced with an insular senate of 14 members also elected by popular vote. As for the directors of the island’s six principal administrative departments, who were selected by the President, the petition asked that they “be appointed by the governor of Porto Rico with the advice and consent of the insular senate.” The petition was submitted to the Committee on Insular Affairs, and no further action was taken.17 In 1907 Larrínaga and the house of delegates lobbied President Theodore Roosevelt, unsuccessfully, to select a native Puerto Rican to serve as secretary of Puerto Rico to administer the insular government’s executive-branch duties.18On November 21, 1906, President Roosevelt visited Puerto Rico en route from a visit to the Panama Canal. He was greeted by a number of political dignitaries, including Larrínaga. During his visit, Roosevelt promised to “continue to use every effort to secure citizenship for Porto Ricans. I am confident that this will come in the end,” he continued. “My efforts will be unceasing to help you along the path of true self-government, which must have for its basis union, order, liberty, justice, and honor.” When Roosevelt returned to the United States, he vigorously lobbied Congress to grant full citizenship to Puerto Ricans, including an appeal in his sixth Annual Message to Congress.19 Five days after submitting the Annual Message, Roosevelt delivered a special message to Congress praising the natural beauty of the island and the effectiveness of its government and reiterating his belief in the “desirability of conferring full American citizenship upon the people of Porto Rico.” “I cannot see how any harm can possibly result from it, and it seems to me a matter of right and justice to the people of Porto Rico,” Roosevelt insisted. “They are loyal, they are glad to be under our flag, they are making rapid progress along the path of orderly liberty.” In the New York Times, Larrínaga noted, “Mr. Roosevelt’s visit had a healthful influence on the political feeling of the country. There was a sentiment of discouragement prevailing on the island. The people thought they were forgotten, but this feeling has now dissipated.”20To supplement such public statements, Larrínaga quietly pressured Roosevelt and Insular Affairs Committee chairman Henry Cooper of Wisconsin to move legislation. Seizing the momentum generated by Roosevelt’s visit to the island, Cooper introduced H.R. 17661, a bill to grant full citizenship to Puerto Ricans. As Larrínaga rounded up the support from other Members, he commented, “The present relation we bear to the United States is ridiculous.… When I went to Europe recently I could say I was a member of the House, yet had to admit I was not an American citizen.” Larrínaga noted that “Spaniards and other foreigners may come to the island, and after a short time become naturalized as American citizens, but the people of Porto Rico, who have lived all their lives there, must remain without citizenship.” When Cooper brought the bill to the House Floor, James Beauchamp (Champ) Clark of Missouri, a future Speaker of the House, objected to debating the bill on the grounds that it “ought to be considered in a full House.” Cooper attempted to schedule a debate for unanimous consent in the next week, but Clark objected again. This resistance effectively killed the bill.21During his second term in the 60th Congress (1907–1909), Larrínaga honed his forceful criticisms of the Foraker Act, tying Puerto Rican dissatisfaction to anti-American sentiment. During a debate about the disapproval of certain laws of the Territory of New Mexico, Larrínaga criticized the Foraker Act as a “leaden block that closed the sepulcher where the liberties and rights of a million freemen are buried.… Instead of … self-government … you will find … the executive is mixed with the legislative, and officers that are appointed by the Executive go down there to make the laws for a people whose customs they do not know; for a people whose faces they have never seen before … and for a people whose laws and language they do not know.” Larrínaga also discussed the economic policies in the act that crippled Puerto Rico’s economy and “ruined the country, because no provision was made to protect our main industry, the industry of the poor man, the coffee industry.” Larrínaga dismissed U.S. statesmen, including House Speaker Joe Cannon, who claimed credit for enhancing Puerto Rico’s economy and political standing. “I hear every day in the political campaign here, ‘We have made Porto Rico prosperous.’ I wish you had,” he declared. “Then no discontent would exist, and perhaps I could be looked upon by my countrymen with more kind regard. I wish you had made Porto Rico happy, but you have not, Mr. Speaker.”22Like his predecessor Degetau, Larrínaga counted among his major legislative interests the retention of the Puerto Rico regiment of the U.S. volunteer infantry from the U.S. Army. The regiment comprised two battalions of volunteer infantry that were authorized by Congress in 1899 and 1900. Introduced on Larrínaga’s behalf by Chairman of the Committee on Military Affairs John Hull of Iowa, H.R. 18618 provided for the establishment of the Puerto Rico Provisional Regiment as a full infantry regiment in the U.S. Army. The House passed the bill with a small majority, but three times Larrínaga then attempted to persuade his colleagues to concur with the Senate’s amendments; eventually the House passed the revised bill and President Roosevelt signed it into law on May 27, 1908.23To promote his constituents’ livelihoods, Larrínaga tried to shield Puerto Rican export markets from exorbitant tariffs.24 In 1907 he corresponded with President Roosevelt, Secretary of State Elihu Root, and various subordinates about the negotiations for French tariffs that would adversely affect Puerto Rico’s ailing coffee industry. The French, in a commercial agreement with the United States, proposed a “maximum tariff of 300 francs per 100 kilograms of coffee imported into the French markets,” Larrínaga wrote. “This [tariff rate] would mean the closing of those markets to our main staple. We depend wholly today on France and Cuba for the disposal of four-fifths of our coffee crop, and you can well imagine, Mr. President, what a terrible blow the closing of those markets would be to the island,” he continued.25 Larrínaga also appealed to Root, writing the tariff issue is “a question of life and death to our coffee-planters. As long as our coffees do not receive protection at our home markets, we shall have to depend upon foreign markets for their sale … to preserve the existence of our plantations.”26 Root informed Larrínaga that the 1908 Commercial Agreement between the United States and France “provided for the application of the minimum rate … in return for certain specified concessions in favor of products of the United States, including Porto Rico” and would take effect in February 1908. In the final agreement, products such as coffee were imported “at the rates of the minimum tariff or at the lowest rates” applicable, though such concessions could be revoked by the French president if additional tariffs were added.27 Larrínaga’s lobbying efforts probably saved the Puerto Rican coffee industry. His interest in foreign affairs received a boost when President Roosevelt selected him as a U.S. delegate to the Pan-American Conference in Rio de Janeiro. He also represented the United States at interparliamentary conferences, in Berlin in 1908 and in Brussels in 1910.28Larrínaga secured appropriations and used his experience as an engineer to promote infrastructure projects in Puerto Rico. He had extensive experience with the construction of San Juan Harbor during his tenure as chief engineer for the project, and later, in 1908, he corresponded with Secretary of the Interior James R. Garfield about improvements. After securing a $657,000 appropriation for the dredging of San Juan Harbor, Larrínaga stressed to Garfield that the project should begin immediately, despite the protests of Governor Regis H. Post. Congress’s approval to fund the project was “in accordance with specific plans prepared by the War Department, and we cannot expend a single dollar out of that appropriation for any other part of the work than that fixed in those plans,” Larrínaga reminded Secretary Garfield.29Larrínaga retired at the end of the 61st Congress and returned to his engineering career. He remained politically active by serving on the territorial executive council. On April 28, 1917, he died of heart trouble in Santurce, a suburb of San Juan.30
Best Way to Increase the Living Space for Your HouseThe value you derive from your home is the main reason why you own it and not renting out from a friend or relative. But with the current economy, the value of homes is on the decline. As a homeowner, you need to get ways to put more value into your property.One way to do this is by making improvements in the property. One such improvement would be home extensions London. Higher living space doesn’t the only amount to happy families but also higher resale value for the property. But be careful as not all the improvements add value to your property. These are some tips to consider when increasing the living space in your property. Go Outside Maximizing your living area for your house requires you to think outside the box. Or outside your home to be more specific. If you have an outdoor with an empty space, not in use, that’s an effective way to increase your living area in a fun, stylish and unique way.Creating an outdoor space is the cheapest and easiest way to create an outdoor room. The good thing, you can't get everything for your exterior that you can get for your indoors. But they are specifically made to withstand harsh weather and environment conditions. These include the seatings, rugs, drapes, lighting, and beds. All these mold, fade and mildew resistant.Ensure the area is sun and waterproof to protect your outdoor living space from destructions. If done correctly, they can accommodate your entire living room. Plus some are portable making it easier to transport in and out of the area. Store and Organize Remember your college life? Probably you were living in a cramped room with a milk crate as your chair? Well, the same mentality can save you a sizeable area of your living area. Just don’t use the milk crate as your chair.For instance, you can use furniture that doubles up as your storage area. Opt for beds or tables with storage chest and ottomans hidden inside.You can also declutter your home by getting everything off your floor. In most cases, the vertical space is the least utilized. If you can manage to get items from your floor and store them on the vertical area, you’ll be able to create an appearance of a spacious room. Have Rooms do Double Duty Let's say you buy a two bedroomed house. It's upon you to decide how many bedrooms that are there in that room. But be careful not to install harmful appliances like kitchenware in your bedroom.But making your rooms do multiple duties is an effective way to utilize the living area. For instance, most appliances like printers and laptops are reducing in size every day. Plus you rarely use your dining area the entire day. As such, you can convert the area into your working space or study room.Determine your main functional needs in a house. Take a step back and analyze the available rooms. Try to customize the rooms to meet your specific needs.
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