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Seems rather silly. Economic demand for data centers is very high. Even if you managed to garner some large political movement that supported stricter land use regulations for the construction of data centers (but were unable to garner a similarly sized political movement for pausing AI or something similar), AI companies would just pay more. NIMBYism can't price rich people out of homes, only poor people. When rents rise across the board people are pushed out from the bottom first. Trying to use zoning law and local development opposition to keep AI companies out of data centers is like trying to use them to make Elon Musk homeless. 

Also, just about any large building can be used as a data center, so it would be hard to restrict. Even then, if data centers in silicon valley became so scarce that google couldn't even afford them, they could just go elsewhere to build them. Location is very important for housing. I don't think that's as much the case with data centers.

Plus, we might think that privately allocated research effort is better matched to social value than whatever university scientists can get through the NIH committee.

Wouldn't we assume the opposite? As a rule, public dollars have more utility than private dollars. Most private patents probably have a negligible effect on social value, and some probably have a negative effect, even if I'm certain that more private patents tends to be a good thing. That 2.5 million dollars per patent via tax cuts could be paying for a patent on new modes of advertising, blenders, corporate interview software, and items on the taco bell menu, whereas the 3.1 million dollars per patent via the NIH is all paying for patents on vaccines, antidepressants, non-invasive surgery methods, and painkillers. Not all innovation is created equal. 

Take care of 2 and 1 will take care of itself. The reason people fear unemployment is because they fear poverty. If the economy is producing incredible amounts of wealth, and there are robust distributive policies allowing everyone access to that wealth, I would expect people to be much happier than they are today. If people have the positive liberty to hang out with their friends, travel, learn new skills, go to restaurants, etc. they'll do it. There are a myriad of ways that people will find to be "useful" and "valued" outside of the workplace. They can derive meaning from their relationships or their creative pursuits. 

Disclaimer: politics is really hard and really controversial, and I'm about to give a political opinion.

I think the evidence is already overwhelming that capitalism is suboptimal. The difficulty isn't in providing evidence for that, it's in providing evidence for a specific superior system. No matter how clever you are, you can't write down a system for the organization of an entire world economy and know with perfect accuracy what would happen if that system were put into place. The world is too complicated. This isn't really a problem with anti-capitalism, but rather a problem with non-reformism. EA's have differing political opinions, although they cluster around social liberalism/social democracy (if the polls are to be believed), but they're universally reformist because reform is just a way safer bet. 

For example, it's generally uncontroversial that markets lead to inequality of wealth, and if you're a utilitarian you should consider unequal distribution of wealth to be suboptimal (in a vacuum at least), because of the principle of diminishing marginal utility. In fact if you believed that market outcomes were axiologically perfect, you wouldn't be an effective altruist, because in order for that to be the case all dollars spent would have to have an equal effect on global utility. So let's say you're an EA looking at the cause area of "wealth inequality" and you brainstorm some solutions:

  1. Organize a large group of revolutionaries to overthrow a government and institute a one party state that appropriates private property and runs the economy via a central plan.
  2. Institute a higher progressive income tax, using the revenue to fund more social programs, a universal basic income, and public housing.
  3. Organize a large group of revolutionaries to overthrow a government and institute a stateless gift economy that relies on negotiated coordination between firms to distribute goods and services according to need. 

The empirical data doesn't like the first idea. It's been tried, and it successfully reduced inequality, which was the goal. In 1980, the GINI coefficient of the USSR was .29, which is pretty equal! But the country was plagued by political problems, mostly a result of a lack of democracy, which lead to mass executions, ethnic cleansing, and other things but I think we've proved the point already. The same approach led to similar problems elsewhere. 

The second idea has also been tried, and it also successfully reduced inequality. The country with the highest income tax in the world is Belgium, which... okay that's a bad example because they also committed mass executions and ethnic cleansing. But the second highest income tax in the world belongs to Finland, which has a GINI coefficient of .26, even lower than the USSR! And it's a stable democracy with a very high standard of living. Other countries with mixed market economies and strong welfare states achieved similar results. This seems like the standout intervention so far, AND it requires the least effort!

The third idea has never been tried on a large scale, so there is no empirical data. You could give arguments for why it would or would not work, but it would ultimately all be speculative. I'm not sure what kind of non-empirical data would convince me that the non-speculative opportunity cost of revolution is worth the speculative benefits. Also, I have extremely strong suspicions that it wouldn't work because of things like price signals and rule of law.

The odds that the current global economic status quo is better than any possible alternative is 0%. However, constructing a system that performs better is very difficult. If it were easy, someone would have done it by now. There are some very interesting models of socialist economies. I find the Cockshott-Cotrrell model really interesting, I really like the Lange-Lerner model. I don't like Parecon. But can these models perform as well as or better than the current world economy? Predicting the behavior of the capitalist economy is infamously difficult, and we have hundreds of years of empirical data to work with. Predicting the behavior of an economy that doesn't even exist yet is impossible. It's too complicated. I can't predict what would happen if the whole world adopted the Lange-Lerner model, but on priors, I think that any system made "by hand" is automatically at a loss against a system with hundreds of years of tweaks, regulations, and real life trial-and-error adjustments to its known failure modes.

So I guess the only thing that could convince me to agitate for the founding of a specific radically different system would be if that radically different system already existed and was superior according to my value system. Previous attempts at socialist economies produced low inequality, low unemployment, and decent growth, which is cool and all, but the Nordic model can do exactly the same thing but with more consumer goods, more democracy, and without the shortages and surpluses that plagued the soviet bloc. I am aware that this approach means that there are utopias in possibility space that I am actively ignoring, but I think the risk-neutral approach is to do exactly that.

EA's of different political opinions than my own likely have different justifications.