Nathan Ashby

194Joined Jul 2022

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That mod was as central to r/antiwork as it was possible to be: https://tracingwoodgrains.medium.com/r-antiwork-a-tragedy-of-sanewashing-and-social-gentrification-56298af1c1a7

The anti-work interview was kind of horrible, but not because Ford misrepresented what the sub was about, or wasn't the right person to speak on its behalf, or wasn't sanctioned to speak to the media. Doreen Ford built the sub. There was no one better placed to do that interview or to approve anyone else to do it. 

What the interview actually did was reveal what the sub was actually about to the recent flood of newcomers. They thought they were there to demand better rights for workers or something, but r/antiwork actually existed to oppose the concept of work itself.

You see these things sometimes - a group gets a lot of new entrants who haven't really internalised the values of the group, and then there's some kind of drama between the new blood and the old guard over the group's core beliefs. There was a much lower-key thing on r/wallstreetbets back when GameStop stock shot up in value - a bunch of people flooded in wanting to stick it to the greedy hedge funds. This was all good for a while while they were all posting about how GME was going to the moon etc. But as time went on, you saw a disconnect - newbies saw Martin Shkreli a.k.a the Pharma Bro as emblematic of the kind of greedy capitalist they hated, while to the old guard Shkreli was a hero (they made him a mod).

The antiwork drama isn't a lesson about the perils of media engagement - it's an example of a community partially losing its values due to rapid growth.

This is an interview that could only come from a guy who has encountered nothing but success until now and still doesn't really understand that he's failed.

I don't understand how you talk WITH A JOURNALIST and are then surprised when they publish what you say. Like, what do you think their job is?

If Kelsey had a close personal relationship with him (e.g. family member), that gets a bit more blurry. But in this case most/all of their interactions have been in a professional context, as far as I can tell. No shades of gray here.

In my book she has done everything above board. To whatever extent he's gotten burned, it's by being too dumb to see the incredibly obvious consequences of his own actions. Which is becoming a real pattern.

Yikes.

As an outside observer I appreciate getting this insight, but boy oh boy I would have told her to not say it if I was her lawyer.

Dear God no.

If a con artist happens to give money to a beggar, you don't go and try to get the money back off the beggar, it's just gone.

It's rough, but rough things happen in this world. I'm not saying anyone deserved to lose their money, but it's not like people were unaware that investing in crypto is inherently risky.

What thoughts do you have about older applicants?

Who is Phil, and why does everyone talk about how open he is?

Thanks for commenting, Eli. 

I'm a bit confused by one of your points here. You say: "I want to clarify that this isn’t how our admissions process works, and neither you nor anyone else we accept would be bumping anyone out of a spot". OK, cool.

However, when I received my acceptance email to EAG it included the words "If you find that you can’t make it to the event after all, please let us know so that we can give your spot to another applicant."

That sure sounds like a request that you make when you have a limited number of spots and accepting one person means bumping another.

To be clear, I think it's completely reasonable to have a set number of places - logistics are a thing, and planning an event for an unknown number of people is extremely challenging. I'm just surprised by your statement that it doesn't work that way.

I also want to make a side note that I strongly believe that making EA fun is important. The movement asks people to give away huge amounts of money, reorient their whole careers, and dedicate themselves to changing the world. Those are big asks! It's very easy for people to just not do them!

It's hard to get people to voluntarily do even small, easy things when they feel unappreciated or excluded. I agree that making EAs happy is not and should not be a terminal value but it absolutely should be an instrumental value.

Hi,

I know some fluently bilingual english/spanish speakers who are not involved in EA (extended family members and connections - my wife is Dominican). Obviously the Dominican Republic is not a rich country, and some of them have pretty low incomes. Would it be appropriate to forward this opportunity to them?

What research has been done into the subjective preferences of different kinds of animals, and how that impacts their welfare needs?

For an example that most people would be familiar with, dogs tend to want to be much more active than cats. If you don't take your dog for a walk regularly or give it a lot of space to run around, that's a negative experience. Conversely, cats tend to be quite content to lie around and chill.

For a more controversial example, keeping pigs in enclosed spaces. Many years ago I worked at an intensive piggery operation. Despite a lot of public concern by animal welfare advocates about sow stalls and keeping pigs in small cages, it seemed to me that the pigs themselves didn't mind at all. They would quite contentedly walk into a cage without any objection, they wouldn't bolt for freedom when we let them out, they didn't try to get out of their cages, etc. And it's not as if they are just generically placid creatures that don't complain about anything. For example, social isolation seems to distress them greatly - on the rare occasions where we would need to separate one pig from the others for a few minutes (we did our best to avoid this, specifically because of the distress it caused them) they would panic and scream and try to get free so they could get back to the others. 

Basically, I wonder to what extent do we mistake what animal welfare issues exist because we focus on the things that we humans would not like, rather than the things that the animals themselves don't like? To use another pig example, they really really love food. Every living thing loves food, but pigs really love food. I know the greedy pig is a stereotype, but it's a stereotype for a reason. But this would sometimes lead to situations where a sow would become overweight and to look after her long term health we would put her on a diet. They hate diets. Those sows on restricted feed schedules were angry and miserable as heck. And I think we just overlook how subjectively bad something like that is for them because we think "oh yeah, diets suck, I know what that's like, but it's worth it for your health". But we don't know what it's like for them, we only know what it's like for us.

I don't even really know how you would possibly go about trying to measure and quantify these things. How much does it bother fish to be in a small pond with thousands of other fish? How could you tell? But I'd be interested to hear about the work that's gone into this area, and I think I'd be almost as interested to hear about the research methods as I would the results.

 

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