Holly_Elmore

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Concerns with ACE's Recent Behavior

Seems like others agreed with you. I meant it mostly seriously. 

Concerns with ACE's Recent Behavior

The more substantial point that I'm trying to make is that the political balance of the EA Forum shouldn't be a big factor in someone's decision to publicize important information about a major charity evaluator, or probably even in how they put the criticism. Many people read posts linked from the EA Forum who never read the comments or don't visit the Forum often for other posts, i.e. they are not aware of the overall balance of political sympathies on the Forum. The tenor of the Forum as a whole is something that should be managed (though I wouldn't advocate doing that through self-censorship) to make EA welcoming or for the health of the community, but it's not that important compared to the quality of information accessible through the Forum, imo. 

I'm a little offended at the suggestion that expressing ideas or important critiques of charities should in any way come second to diplomatic concerns about the entire Forum. 

Are mice or rats (as pests) a potential area of animal welfare improvement?

I have been researching sterilizing rodents instead of killing them to control their populations, and it's much more popular already than I had realized. ContraPest is a bait that sterilizes rats with a few doses. It reduces sperm viability in males and induces aging of ovarian follicles in females, sort of like early menopause. There's a bit of a lag before the population reduces, but it has the benefits of humaneness, not disturbing the rats' territories (because older rats stick around, preventing movement between territories which can spread disease), and providing a better longterm maintenance solution. It's already widely used, and Senestech, the company that makes it, has had big contracts with cities like NYC and Wasington DC. 

I was very surprised to find out how widespread the use of sterilants already was considering I had not heard of them for rodent pest control until last year!

I think this is a good cause not only to reduce harm to household pests, but because having to participate in cruelty toward animals can lead to cognitive dissonance or defensiveness or the status quo treatment of animals. Finding out about sterilants got me out of binary way of thinking towards rat infestation (it's them or me) and that's the kind of creative problem-solving we need if we're ever going to make real improvements in wild animal welfare. 

Concerns with ACE's Recent Behavior

I think this post is pretty damning of ACE. Are you saying OP shouldn't have posted important information about how ACE is evaluting animal charities because there has been too much anti-SJ/DEI stuff on the forum lately?

Response to Phil Torres’ ‘The Case Against Longtermism’

Are you implying that Larry Summers was wrong or that Texaco's actions were somehow his fault?

Response to Phil Torres’ ‘The Case Against Longtermism’

I think it's important for EA to promote high decoupling in intellectual spaces.  You also have to consider that this is a philosophy dissertation, which is an almost maximally decoupling space. 

Response to Phil Torres’ ‘The Case Against Longtermism’

I don't understand why thinking like that quote isn't totally passe to EAs. At least to utilitarian EAs. If anyone's allowed to think hypothetically ("divorced from the reality") I would think it would be a philosophy grad student writing a dissertation.

Ask Rethink Priorities Anything (AMA)
  1. Personally, I’m very self-conscious about my work and tend to wait to long too share it. But the culture of RP seems to fight that tendency— which I think is very productive!
Ask Rethink Priorities Anything (AMA)

I can answer 6, as I’ve been doing it for Wild Animal Welfare since I was hired in September. WAW is a new and small field, so it is relatively easy to learn the field, but there’s still so much! I started by going backwards (into the Welfare Biology movement of the 80s and 90s) and forwards (into the WAW EA orgs we know today) from Brain Tomasik, consulting the primary literature over various specific matters of fact. A great thing about WAW being such a young field (and so concentrated in EA) is that I can reach out to basically anyone who’s published on it and have a real conversation. It’s a big shortcut!

I should note that my background is in Evolutionary Biology and Ecology, so someone else might need a lot more background in those basics if they were to learn WAW.

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