Dustin Moskovitz

2649 karmaJoined


My view is that rationalists are the force that actively makes room for it (via decoupling norms), even in "guest" spaces.  There is another post on the forum from last week that seems like a frankly stark example.

I cannot control what the EA community chooses for itself norm-wise, but I can control whether I fuel it.

Ok great. Well I just want to re-emphasize the distinction again between "OP" and the people who work at OP. It's not a homogenous blob of opinions, and AFAIK we didn't fire anybody related to this, so a lot of the individuals who work there definitely agree with you/want to keep working with you on things and disagree with me.

Based on your read of their feelings and beliefs, which I sincerely trust is superior to my own (I don't work out of the office or anything like that), there is empirically a chilling effect from my decisions. All I can say is that wasn't what I was aiming for, and I'll try to mitigate it if I can.

Apologies, again, for putting words in your mouth. I was using a little gallows humor to try to break the tension. It didn't work.

Oh sorry I wasn’t speaking precisely enough - I only meant you wouldn’t want them working with OP and would advise them not to. I didn’t mean to put words in your mouth and I agree they could help recruit a donor to work with another group.

I can confirm that Oliver dislikes us especially, and that other people dislike us as well.

I don't think it's true that no other donors exist for these areas. My understanding is Alexander and his colleagues are engaging some folks already and expect to get more inbounds now that this is better known.

It seems clear you actually do not want them to recruit donors for the grantees you're focused on, which is ok, but there are also areas that have nothing to do with you.

Re: attack surface in my early comment, I actually meant attacks from EAs. People want to debate the borders, quite understandably. I have folks in my DMs as well as in the comments. Q: "Why did we not communicate more thoroughly on the forum"
A: "Because we've communicated on the forum before"

I don't think endorse vs. not endorse describes everything here, but it describes some if it. I do think I spend some energy on ~every cause area, and if I am lacking conviction, that is a harder expenditure from a resource I consider finite.

An example of a non-monetary cost where I have conviction: anxiety about potential retribution from our national political work. This is arguably not even EA (and not new), but it is a stressful side hustle we have this year. I had hoped it wouldn't be a recurring thing, but here we are.

An example of a non-monetary cost where I have less conviction: the opportunity cost of funding insect welfare instead of chicken, cow, or pig welfare. I think I could be convinced, but I haven't been yet and I've been thinking about it a long time! I'd much prefer to just see someone who actually feels strongly about that take the wheel. It is not a lot of $s in itself, but it keeps building, and there are an increasing number of smaller FAW areas like this.

I failed to forecast this issue for myself well when we were in an expansionary mindset, and I found that the further we went, the more each area on the margin had some element of this problem. I deferred for a really long time, until it became too much. Concurrently, I saw the movement becoming less and less appealing to other funders, and I believe these are related issues.

I've long taken for granted that I am not going to live in integrity with your values and the actions you think are best for the world. I'm only trying to get back into integrity with my own.

OP is not an abstraction, of course, and I hope you continue talking to the individuals you know and have known there.

The question is inseparable from the lack of other donors. Of course it is true right now, because they have no one else to refer the grants to.

My hope is that having other donors for OP would genuinely create governance independence as my apparent power comes from not having alternate funding sources*, not from structural control. Consequently, you and others lay blame on me even for the things we don't do. I would be happy to leave the board even, and happy to expand it to diminish my (non-controlling) vote further. I did not want to create a GVF hegemony any more than you wanted one to exist. (If the future is a bunch of different orgs, or some particular "pure" org, that's good by me too; I don't care about OP aggregating the donors if others don't see that as useful.)

But I do want agency over our grants. As much as the whole debate has been framed (by everyone else) as reputation risk, I care about where I believe my responsibility lies, and where the money comes from has mattered. I don't want to wake up anymore to somebody I personally loathe getting platformed only to discover I paid for the platform. That fact matters to me.

* Notably just for the "weird" stuff. We do successfully partner with other donors now! I don't get in their way at all, as far as I know.

Load more