Comment author: Khorton 24 August 2018 05:46:09PM 2 points [-]

But, like... What you said made me feel bad and was also unhelpful. I gained nothing from it, and lost a good mood. So why say it?

If you had suggested a useful resource or alternative, I would have thought your comment had merit.

Alternatively, you could have shown compassion by reflecting back what you heard - saying something like, "It sounds like making trade-offs on a daily basis is very emotional for you, so you donate a set percentage to cope. That might be the best solution for you right now. However, that doesn't mean it's the best solution for everyone."

Comment author: Milan_Griffes 24 August 2018 08:29:32PM *  -2 points [-]

+1 to Khorton.

This could be a good opportunity for kbog to reflect and maybe update.

But I predict that they'll instead double-down on their position...

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 24 August 2018 02:56:14AM *  0 points [-]

I think a relevant test here is "Is this better than saying nothing at all?"

It conveys the truth, which is a good reason to presume that it is.

Comment author: Milan_Griffes 24 August 2018 04:36:10AM *  0 points [-]

"First, is it true? Second, is it kind? Third, is it necessary?"

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 24 August 2018 02:45:00AM *  1 point [-]

This reads a bit like "hey, I have the same thing you're having, but it's not a problem for me. Maybe if you just snapped out of it, it wouldn't be a problem for you either!"

But I didn't say "Maybe if you just snapped out of it, it wouldn't be a problem for you either," I said it was abnormal.

I think this sort of framing lacks compassion & can exacerbate things.

If you have a better way of framing the same facts, feel free to present it.

I don't follow this; could you expand on it a little?

Well there isn't any basis for it, and it contradicts consequentialism, it contradicts deontology, really I can't think of any framework that says that you should make a budget such that a percentage of your money is a carte blanche gift to you that is independent of the considerations of benevolence and distributive justice. In all sensible moral theories, the needs of others count as a pro tanto reason to donate any amount of your money.

Comment author: Milan_Griffes 24 August 2018 02:50:47AM 0 points [-]

If you have a better way of framing the same facts, then feel free to present it.

I think a relevant test here is "Is this better than saying nothing at all?"

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 24 August 2018 01:01:34AM *  0 points [-]

I think characterizing thought-patterns as "abnormal" isn't helpful for the person you're addressing, and isn't good for our community's discourse.

Well it is not normal. That's what abnormal means. I think that the most helpful thing is to tell the truth. I have abnormal thought patterns too, it doesn't perturb me to recognize it.

Especially when the thought-pattern in question is fairly common around these parts.

No, that is exactly when it is most important to say "hey, this is not a foregone conclusion, you are in a bit of an echo chamber".

Also "how most people think" isn't a good benchmark for "how should we think."

Sure, what is rational is a good benchmark for how we should think, and it's rational to eschew hard rules about what percentage of your money is luxurious versus what percentage is charitable.

I am using "how most people think" as a good benchmark for how we can think, and what I am pointing out here is that it is possible to adopt the rational way of thinking without going crazy and self-flagellating.

Comment author: Milan_Griffes 24 August 2018 01:27:40AM *  0 points [-]

I think that the most helpful thing is to tell the truth. I have abnormal thought patterns too, it doesn't perturb me to recognize it.

This reads a bit like "hey, I have the same thing you're having, but it's not a problem for me. Maybe if you just snapped out of it, it wouldn't be a problem for you either!"

I think this sort of framing lacks compassion & can exacerbate things.

it's rational to eschew hard rules about what percentage of your money is luxurious versus what percentage is charitable.

I don't follow this; could you expand on it a little?

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 24 August 2018 12:34:09AM *  -2 points [-]

It seems straightforward to realize that you need food so that you can go about your business of making the world better. A soldier in WWII did not feel some kind of moral pain at the fact that he was getting more meat in his rations than the civilians back home. To agonize or "self-lacerate" about this common-sense logic is an abnormal pathology which is specific to certain types of people who join EA. So I understand that it doesn't work for you, but I think that's not representative of how most people will think, and it's worth making a real effort to learn to get along with the rational line of thought.

Comment author: Milan_Griffes 24 August 2018 12:58:09AM *  1 point [-]

I think characterizing thought-patterns as "abnormal" isn't helpful for the person you're addressing, and isn't good for our community's discourse.

Especially when the thought-pattern in question is fairly common around these parts.


Also "how most people think" isn't a good benchmark for "how ought we think."

Comment author: Khorton 23 August 2018 09:39:38AM 2 points [-]

(Two years later...) I have tried it. It's a disaster for me. Every time I buy food, I think, "Someone else needs this food more than me," which is an accurate statement but takes me to a dark place.

Comment author: Milan_Griffes 23 August 2018 04:41:27PM 1 point [-]

This seems hard; sorry to hear about it :-/

For what it's worth, I've found self-laceration like this to be both really bad for my mental health and really bad for my personal efficacy.

Comment author: Milan_Griffes 21 August 2018 05:55:28PM 1 point [-]

Cool project! I'm impressed by the thoroughness of the lists.

This will take a lot of ongoing attention to keep up-to-date. Are you planning to do list maintenance as ongoing volunteer work? Are you intending to seek funding for ongoing maintenance?

Also, who do you have in mind as your intended customer?

Comment author: Justis 19 August 2018 09:23:45PM 1 point [-]

I really like the Open Philanthropy Project's way of thinking about this problem:

https://www.openphilanthropy.org/blog/update-cause-prioritization-open-philanthropy

The short version (in my understanding): 1. Split assumptions about the world/target metrics into distinct "buckets". 2. Do allocation as a two step process: intra-bucket on that bucket's metric, and inter-bucket separately using other sorts of heuristics.

(If you like watching videos rather than reading blog posts, Holden also discussed this approach in his fireside chat at EAG 2018: San Francisco.)

Comment author: Milan_Griffes 20 August 2018 03:07:32PM *  6 points [-]

Sure, but I don't think that framework gives a decision procedure for what buckets are worth considering. (Haven't read it closely recently, so maybe I missed this.)

For example, I'm pretty sure a Christian who's interested in EA principles wouldn't be able to convince EA decision-makers that a Christian missionary intervention was effective, even if it was very cost-effective & had a track record of success.

The Christian wouldn't be able to make the case for their missionary intervention because "spreading the word of God" isn't a goal that EA considers worthwhile. As far as I know, EA doesn't have a strong case for why this kind of thing isn't worthwhile, it's just one of the "deep judgment calls" that Holden talks about in that post.

Not caring about Christian missionary work is in cultural DNA of EA. It's not a particularly justified position, rather it's an artifact of the worldview assumptions that a quorum of EAs brought to the community at a certain point in time.

(To be super-duper clear, I'm not advocating for Christian interventions to be included in EA; it's just an illustrative example.)

Comment author: AGB 19 August 2018 10:08:07PM 11 points [-]

(Speaking as a member of the panel, but not in any way as a representative of CEA).

It’s worth noting the panel hasn’t been consulted on anything in the last 12 months. I don’t think there’s anything necessarily wrong with this, especially since it was set up partly in response to the Intentional Insights affair and AFAIK there has been no similar event in that time, but I have a vague feeling that someone reading Julia’s posts would think it was more common, which I guess was part of the ‘question behind your question’, if that makes sense :)

Comment author: Milan_Griffes 20 August 2018 02:54:36PM 0 points [-]

That's interesting background, thanks :-)

Comment author: Julia_Wise  (EA Profile) 16 August 2018 03:10:05PM *  3 points [-]

To add a little more background: we're always glad to get ideas from the community about EA Global on our content/speaker suggestion form.

We also get feedback on major decisions that will affect the community from an advisory panel, chosen because they had given us especially useful criticism in the past. However, we'd like to get more frequent, informal feedback as well.

Comment author: Milan_Griffes 16 August 2018 04:50:29PM 3 points [-]

Is there a process for joining & leaving the advisory panel, or is that handled informally?

Also, could you say a little more about how & when the panel is engaged for feedback?

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