Brazilian legal philosopher, financial supervisor, and GWWC Pledger
Thanks.I wonder if there’s anything similar for the Great Famine of 1876 (I don’t think so; it looks like it didn’t affect the global North very much, and governments remained stable).
This is wonderful the way it is, but perhaps it could be developed into an amazing top post. Allfed would like it.Suggestion of a catchy title: “Blame the Springtime of Nations on the Incas”
Take that, people who say “muzak and potatoes” as if it was a bad thing.
This paper proposes to transmit an “updated Arecibo-like” message to a star cluster near the galaxy’s center, a “selected region of the Milky Way which has been proposed as the most likely for life to have developed”. Caleb Schwarf summarizes the issue here. Even if we set aside the possibility of conflict, maybe discussions on Space Governance should include how we might communicate with other types of intelligent life, like “at least don’t mention that we kill animals”.
Thanks for the post. Following along with the other comments, I think this community sometimes overemphasizes the utilitarian case for longtermism (that, even if sound, may be unpersuasive for non-utilitarians), and often neglects the possibility of basing it on a theory of intergenerational cooperation / justice (something that, in my opinion, is underdeveloped among contractualist political philosophers). That’s why I think this discussion is quite relevant, and I commend you for bringing it up.I agree with Justin’s comment that acausal trade might be a good way to frame the relationship between agents through different time slices… but you need something even weaker than that—instead of framing it as a cooperation between two agents, think about a chain of cooperation and add backward induction: if 27!Austin finds out he’ll not comply with 17!Austin commitments, he’ll have strong evidence that 37!Austin won’t comply with his commitments, too—which threatens plans lasting more than a decade. And this is not such a weird reasoning: individuals often ponder if they will follow their own plans (or if they will change their minds, or be driven away by temptation...), and some financial structures depend on analogous “continuing commitments” (think about long-term debt and pension funds).
(actually, I suspect acausal trade might have stronger implications than what most people here would feel comfortable with… because it may take you to something very close to a universalization principle akin to a Kantian categorical imperative—but hey, Parfit has already convinced me we’re all “climbing the same mountain”)
From a rationalist point of view, the truth is the most important thing, so virtue signaling is bad because it’s (suspected to be) dishonest
It’s a good way of framing it (if by “rationalist” you mean something like the avg member of LW). I think the problem in this description is that we often emphasize so much the need of being aware of one’s own biases that we picture ourselves as “lonely reasoners”—neglecting, e.g., the frequent necessity to communicate one is something like a reliable cooperator.
Thanks for the post. However, I find it weird that this actually has to be written down and be made explicit.
(or perhaps I spent too much time thinking about credit scoring)
Thanks for pointing out this small elephant in the room.
I think that, even if we could solve problems like the “ossification of values” (idk, maybe psychodelics, or some special therapy) or the possibility of immortal tyrants, the underlying problem is that some types of power (like wealth) accumulate with time… as usual, I think SMBC summarizes it in just one panel:
In “Three worlds collide”, the rationalist character makes it clear for the captain of the ship that the latter has to make the important decisions, because it’s not up to the elders, but to the young, to command. I don’t think this necessarily applies to our current societies, but I can see why it makes sense in contexts with extreme longevity. Unfortunately, it looks like we think it might be easier to solve senescence than intergenerational cooperation.
I don’t think environmentalists would like it
I am inclined to answer “no,” because I’ve seen the subject pop in some discussions on economics in this Forum… on the other hand, I’ve also seen some EAs disregard matters of economic distribution as secondary—if not an obstacle to economic progress. I remember seeing this subject figure in some critiques to the movement or mentioned en passant when the subject is billionaires’ philanthropy. Anyway, I’d like to document and share here some of my impressions resulting from a 30min search on the subject.
My attention was recently drawn to the matter thanks to this survey showing a consensus in IGF Forum (from *before* the pandemic – though the results were just released this week) that inequality of income and wealth is a danger to capitalism and to democracy. It fits CORE’s survey among students on “what is the most pressing problem economists should address”. Though it is evidence of the importance of the matter, it also suggests that it’s not neglected.
Of course, inequality is particularly relevant to studying and fighting poverty—as shown in this post from GWWC’ Hazell and Holmes. However, the subject probably impacts the trajectory of our societies, as this kind of neglected GPI working paper / forum post argues that “we have instrumental reason to reduce economic inequality based on its intertemporal effects in the short, medium and the very long term” […] “because greater inequality could increase existential risk”.
Thanks for this post. Though I am not quite convinced by most of the reasoning, and I understand that FTX LTFF’s awards aims to encourage new bloggers, instead of rewarding old successful ones (which would better be done by something like Impact Certificates, instead of awards), I really appreciate your points—particularly the critique to short content. I am afraid that blogging might too often be like preaching to the choir—and that journalism and books have a better shot at affecting new audiences (especially policy-makers).
Maybe you wanna check Sanjay’s posts on ESG and the universal ownership approach? Also FHI’s report on the Windfall Clause.
But if you’re more concerned with governance itself from a mechanism design point of view, I remember some people dealt with it in iidm, and you could follow the Effective Institutions project
(sorry, I totally should provide the links, but I still have some trouble to do it on my phone)
give the writer +2 karma if they fill a 75w “TL;DR” section in the post;
Have a section “TL;DR-ed posts” in the front page
Start a new convention by writing a comment “great post, thanks, it’d be even better if you had a TL;DR, what d’you think?” after each post you see (if you do that, I’ll promptly follow)
Cool & thanks for the post. My remarks:
I’d like to do the same for Portuguese (or at least to see it done). See you in London.
Fin has mentioned that translating The Precipice is an EA Project he’d like to see, and FTX agreed. On the other hand, I remember some old posts questioning the overall effectiveness of translations… I mean, most EA-material people can read English. So what is the impact one can expect with translations?Anecdote: we have a bit of 80kh content translated into Portuguese… but most Brazilian EAs I know have found out about it through original sources (often while studying abroad) - our material in Portuguese have been useful to help them connect. I’m not sure if this would extrapolate to other languages, though.
My pet theory on the impact of translations: perhaps one should distinguish different aims & strategies here. For instance, if one wants to translate content to reach a larger public online, it’s better to pick short texts that are attractive to larger audiences and so susceptible to get some repercussion… But perhaps one wants a more targetted effect—and that’s where translating books might help. Translating, e.g., “The Precipice” would be useful to get some attention from the press and maybe some policy-makers… the point here is not that this audience is not capable of reading the original, but that it’s more likely they’ll want to read something their friends are talking about (and having the book translated makes it more likely). Most people I know (myself included) can read S. Pinker or Y. Harari in the original, but they heard about them at first because of some recently published translation—and, at least in my case, the first contact was with a translation.
Thanks for the post. I think it’s worth your time and our attention. I tend to agree with you… do you think a similar reasoning (i e., that you can leverage your impact by pressing “meta”-regulators) would apply to EEUU (eg., the European banking authority), too? And /or to TCFD?
On the other hand, it seems that you think individual contributions could have an impact, right? This conflicts with my anecdotal experience with public consultations—where usually interest groups and personal connections tend to be prioritized by policy-markets (who can’t really pay attention to all the messages they receive). But if you’re right, would it be convenient to draft some guidelines or even a token for messages to be addressed to SEC?
I googled it and found:
“These claims are overblown, but soil erosion is a problem and we can do something about it.”
Thanks for the post. I share your concerns, and I even enjoy the kind of alarmist tone. However, I think some possible objections would be:a) Perhaps job applications are more effective at marketing EA than other strategies. Publish a good job offer, and you can make dozens or hundreds of talented and motivated people dive into EA concepts.
b) Maybe false positive rates are increasing, but what about recall? It’s all about trade-offs, right? There are probably many people with EA potential out there; how many vultures are you willing to let in to attract them?
c) I don’t have a problem with “effective” vultures. If they can, e.g., solve the alignment problem or fill the operational needs of an EA organization, does it matter a lot that they are just building career capital?
The FTX future fund lists economic growth as one of its areas of interest
On the other hand, they explicitly justify it with longtermist considerations (I’m prety OK w that).