Yes, that seems like the main thing we disagree about. It also seems like we disagree about the likely impact of deworming.
Another point is - how much economic value can you extract from an atom? I have no idea how you would go about answering that question without making some other substantive arguments about the limits to growth. This suggests that the atoms argument is a weak steer on limits to growth.
Hello, yes this was in part a response to the arguments there where he suggested that policy is in the same ballpark as GiveWell top charities, which I don't think can be true given other things he says.
"Yeah, I think that’s totally right. And I think, again, if you had more of a dominance argument, where it’s like, look, the returns to the policy are just always going to outweigh the returns to evidence-based aid, then I think you would end up with more back and forth and debate between them. But when you see the arguments for cost effectiveness actually ending up in the same ballpark, the same universe, it’s just like, cool, we can all get along. People are going to sort into buckets that appeal to them, or styles that work for them, or interventions that they’re more personally excited about. I think that’s totally healthy. And then when some of them think, actually, the expected value-type argument seems to lead you to think one of these is going to just totally destroy the other, that’s where I think you get a little bit more friction and tension and debate sometimes."
Because there is little public discussion about what happens in the near-termist area, it is difficult to know why certain decisions are taken. I think it would be better for decisions that affect millions of dollars to be made with more public discussion and scrutiny.
Hello, thanks for this and thanks for assisting with our report on that!
To clarify, it's not the case that the FP report didn't have any recommendations because we didn't find anything good. We stopped because we couldn't guarantee that we could move enough money to the area to make it worth our own time and that of the organisations we evaluated. We didn't discover anything that made me think we wouldn't find something better than deworming if we were to put a couple of person-years into it.
On your tldr - the point of my post is that I don't see how it could be true that the returns are not higher than direct RCT-tested projects. Either US policy doesn't actually get close to the GiveWell bar, or poor world policy beats it.
Is it sufficient for it to be good to vote for EAs to be better than the median voter? (which I think is probably true.)
I think there is a typo in the bit about Weyl?
The interesting thing about the Weyl proposal is that it is an alternative to private property that could potentially produce better social outcomes from a consequentialist/utilitarian/social welfare point of view. The reason for this is that it overcomes the tragedy of the anti-commons, such that holdouts can extract rents, sometimes at huge expense to society. If Weyl's proposal would produce better outcomes, would you be in favour of it
Given the non-identity problem, doesn't the requirement that future people benefit more than they lose allow us to leave future generations with quite a bad situation? eg emitting fossil fuels changes the identities of people in the future, and we could feasibly make the world >10C hotter which would leave lots of tropical countries in a bad state but it would not harm them since they would not have existed had we not emitted
The point he is making is about worker cooperatives, rather than firms in general. A widely recognised problem with worker cooperatives is that there are disincentives to scale because adding more workers is a cost to the existing coop owners. So, the point doesn't apply to privately owned companies because adding workers do not get a share of the business