All of Morgan Allen's Comments + Replies

When did EA miss a great opportunity to do good?

I am baffled as to what 'net positive impact' extinction rebellion is supposed to have made, given they tarnish the reputation of the environmental movement as a whole with vastly exaggerated projections of doom, actively block pursuit of non-renewable energy solutions like natural gas, carbon capture and nuclear, and promote an anti-natalist hysteria which is only going to make other economic and social problems worse over the coming decades.

1Chris Leong4mo
I'm not strongly sure about the sign of the impact. I'd lean towards positive, but maybe I'd change my mind if I did a deeper dive. My main point was that not everything that is impactful needs to be done inside of EA.
When did EA miss a great opportunity to do good?

I personally don't think journalists have been voicing these concerns in anything like a manner proportionate to the risk of megadeath (compared with something like, say, climate change, which has become a perennial font of public hysteria even though its impact on quality of life will likely be minimal for most areas of the globe.)

Climate change's effects on desertification and rising sea levels could plausibly either directly or indirectly kill tens of millions over the coming century- which isn't exactly good news, but... given our global population siz... (read more)

Retrospective on Shall the Religious Inherit The Earth

On the topic of comparing French and German fertility- so far as I can tell, Karlin isn't making any attempt to control for Muslim fertility as a component of the French total?  There are probably some ultra-conservative French catholics bumping up the total, but insular French-Muslim communities by themselves could explain the French case in roughly the same way as the Amish.

Also, FWIW, the lower rates of Amish defection over time might not necessarily reflect genetic changes (although that's also possible.)  The larger external secular society ... (read more)

When did EA miss a great opportunity to do good?

An analyst I follow called Peter Zeihan managed to predict the Ukraine war and the impact it would have on global energy, food and fertiliser markets.  He's now predicting global famine and civil unrest considerably worse than the arab spring before the end of the year, potentially including the collapse of China.

If this is true, there's a wide range of projects that need to be considered by way of making agriculture less fertiliser-dependent, and most projects aimed at, e.g, saving lives from tropical disease are small fry by comparison.

I agree - this sounds a bit like a "weak" version of the case for Allfed [], right? IGM Forum kind of agree with this prediction [], but less intensely. On the other hand, I wonder about what would be the marginal impact of an EA project on that. I don't think this is neglected - I have recently read many journalists voicing these concerns, and I see some people in food systems concerned with similar problems in global supply chains... but then perhaps we could start discussing if neglectedness is still a useful metric when we deal if world-level problems.
Best Countries during Nuclear War

Food and Energy Security should be rated much higher, along with self-sufficiency in general, since GPI and HDI could go to hell in a handbasket depending on what other countries get wiped out or rendered inaccessible to trade during a world war in general or nuclear war specifically.  A lot of countries' food output is dependent on fertiliser imports from places like Morocco and China.

Modelling Great Power conflict as an existential risk factor

I would strongly recommend taking a look at Peter Zeihan's work- he forecasted, among other things, the invasion of Ukraine back in 2015 based on an array of geographic and demographic factors, and expects many similar calamities in the coming years.  (TLDR- Russia's top-heaving ageing demography and insecure geostrategic perimeter is prompting it to expand to reach geographical choke points like the Besarabian Gap before it runs out of young men to draft.)

There's an interview on the topic here that you might take a look at.  Of particular intere... (read more)