This is also just an example of how growing and diversifying the EA funding base can be useful even if EA is not on the whole funding constrained ... a longtermist superpac that raised $1 million each from 12 different rich guys who got rich in different ways would arguably be more credible than one with a single donor.
Feel free to cross-post!
Similarly, I’d heard of Peter Singer as a result of campus controversies over his (alleged) views on disability long before I heard anything else about him. But it was actually learning about that controversy that prompted me to go see him speak some time in 2001 or so and I was surprised by what I heard.
Candidates for office, by law, get a more favorable rate on TV ads than superpacs do.
So up to the legal limit, a direct donation to a candidate is more valuable.
That’s because there haven’t been enough articles!
The first obvious answer is that most students simply haven’t been reached yet. If true, we may need to massively boost (high-quality) student outreach, making sure that every student who could be sympathetic towards EA ideas finds out about EA.
This is my bias as a media guy, but to me this survey actually suggests the opposite of the need to "massively boost (high-quality) student outreach" — if there is a large bloc of students who are sympathetic to EA but have never heard of it, what's needed is really just greater prominence in mass media. If you just... (read more)
This is an excellent post, one slightly subtle point about the political dynamics that I think it misses is the circumstances around BoldPAC's investment in Salinas.
BoldPAC is the superpac for Hispanic House Democrats. It happens to be the case that in the 2022 election cycle there is a Hispanic state legislator (Andrea Salinas) living in a blue-leaning open US House of Representatives seat. It also happens to be the case that given the ups and downs of the political cycle, this is the only viable opportunity to add a Hispanic Democrat to the c... (read more)
Where to even start here? Nearly every fact in this post is wrong, the interpretation of events is backwards, and the conclusion is contrarian, wrong and frankly fairly ugly.
It's not a heavily Hispanic area or anything
It's not a heavily Hispanic area or anything
OR-6 contains the most populated areas of three counties in western OR with the highest Hispanic populations (map from wikipedia). It also contains towns like Woodburn, which is 57% Hispanic or Latino.
By the way, Rep. Salinas and Rep. Leon are actually both Latina, and I believe both are the children of immigrant farm workers. That's a su... (read more)
I share this "outdated, rather than foundational" concern. I think it is possible that what is really called for here is human editorial attention rather than algorithms and sorting tools. Someone or someones to read through tons of old stuff and make some Best Of collections.
The flip side is that grift can be an opportunity. Suppose a bunch of members of congress decide EA donors are easy marks and they can get a bunch of money in exchange for backing some weird pandemic prevention bill they don’t even slightly care about or believe in. Well then the bill passes and that’s a good outcome.
That seems like a quite distinct case than what Ben is worrying about - more like a standard commercial interaction, 'buying' pandemic prevention. If I buy a pizza, it makes little difference to me if the cashier is deeply aligned with my dietary and health objectives - all I care about is that he got the toppings right. It is not from the benevolence of the pizza guy that we expect our dinner, but from his regard to his own interest. I think grift would be more like a politician writing a speech to cater to EA donors and then voting for exactly the same things they intended to anyway.
Agree that the Guarding Against Pandemics prevention policies are probably the most constructive thing to push. If you're talking to a Republican who's disinclined to spend money, tell them they should pay for it by clawing-back unspent state Covid relief funds.
I would just add to this that it’s worth taking a few minutes to really think if there is anyone you might possibly know who lives in the district — or even a second-degree connection like a friend’s sister who you’ve never met. “Relational” communications are much more high-impact than calling strangers if it’s at all possible to find someone you have any connection with.
If you're wondering who you might know in Oregon, you can search your Facebook friends by location:
Search for Oregon (or Salem) in the normal FB search bar, then go to People. You can also select to see "Friends of Friends".
I assume that will miss a few, so it's probably worth also actively thinking about your network, but this is probably a good low-effort first start.
Edit: Actually they need to live in district 6. The biggest city in that district is Salem as far as I can tell. Here's a map.
These days campaigns can use late money thanks to digital ad opportunities