Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 20 November 2017 08:00:13AM 0 points [-]

Sure, I'm willing to help.

Comment author: Andaro 18 November 2017 01:00:20PM *  -1 points [-]

That's incorrect.

You can't make a thread saying sexual violence is bad because of suicide, and then not allow people to discuss the consent principle as it pertains to suicide.

If you use "lives saved" numbers that imply involuntary survival is good, then you will get commenters pointing out that this violates the consent principle. You are not immune to criticism.

Don't want to discuss suicde? Then don't bring it up.

The other points crossed some inferential distance, but were both relevant and correct. It really is true that most rape currently happens in nonhuman animals, and that the x-risk reduction efforts implies actively causing a future that contains astronomical amounts of additional rape. This is both true and relevant, even if it goes against the usual euphemistic framing and may therefore sound counterintuitive to you.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 20 November 2017 07:04:07AM *  0 points [-]

You can't make a thread saying sexual violence is bad because of suicide, and then not allow people to discuss the consent principle as it pertains to suicide.

If you use "lives saved" numbers that imply involuntary survival is good, then you will get commenters pointing out that this violates the consent principle.

Well that is just a terrible argument, because no one's consent is being violated when we prevent their lives from being bad enough that they want to commit suicide.

and that the x-risk reduction efforts implies actively causing a future that contains astronomical amounts of additional rape.

That's not really new. Having more population implies having more of... everything.

This is both true and relevant, even if it goes against the usual euphemistic framing and may therefore sound counterintuitive to you

Look dude, if you want to go around saying "we should let the planet go extinct so that wildlife doesn't endure the tragedy of existence" then the onus of justifying things that sound counterintuitive on their face is on you.

Comment author: DavidMoss 17 November 2017 05:29:47PM 0 points [-]

Actually, in consequentialism intent is irrelevant.

It might be relevant to the evaluation of the rightness of acts (in a certain sense), but it's not irrelevant (for consequentialists) to what type of act an act is or the evaluation of the actor. (We have other moral concepts aside from the rightness of acts) Consequentialists don't claim that open heart surgery is a murderous stabbing if it happens to be unsuccessful.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 20 November 2017 06:58:46AM *  0 points [-]

Consequentialism doesn't care about "what type of act an act is" because it views the rightness of acts purely in terms of their consequences, not in terms of what type of act an act is, or what kind of actor an actor is. Imagine if you said, "Utility is irrelevant for Kantian ethics", and then I said "no, it is relevant, because even though Kantians don't make decisions on the basis of utility, the amount of utility caused by a decision affects the Kantian's belief about the amount of utility caused by an action." So what? It's still irrelevant.

Comment author: Denkenberger 17 November 2017 06:04:59PM 4 points [-]

This shows that psychology professors in the US are ~10:1 liberal to conservative, almost as extreme as EA. So I think there are data to show that there is little ideological diversity in academia, especially the humanities, social sciences, and arts.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 20 November 2017 06:55:56AM *  0 points [-]

There's a lot more to diversity than the liberal/conservative ratio. I could come up with any partisan divide to argue anything I want, e.g. economics academia has very little diversity because the ratio of communists to capitalists is 1:100, or philosophy academia has a lot of diversity because the ratio of liberal feminists to radical feminists is 1:1, or something like that.

Comment author: Marcus_N 18 November 2017 03:57:39AM *  1 point [-]

I think the crux of our disagreement is that you are far more trusting of large institutions and social scientists than I am. I don't think I can convince you of my position in a comment box, I have given a couple case studies in support of it:

I brought up Koss and MacKinnon to show that feminist ideology is highly influential on the current party line about sexual violence in polite society, the workplace, and academia, and that it is not from a neutral source, or from the social consensus of the population. You can argue that this feminist influence is good, that feminists are correct about sexual violence, and that it's wonderful that they found a methodology to prove it. But it's undeniable that these ideas came from feminism and were imposed top-down via institutions, not by social consensus of the larger population.

I brought up Lisak's shadiness to suggest that the sexual assault field is full of perverse incentives, not "world-class" neutral research. Lisak cannot answer basic questions about his methodology. Also, he cut-and-pasted together decades old interviews to create the perfect rapist predator, played by an actor on a video that he shows to big institutions. This is the behavior of an activist, not a researcher. But his work is behind the policies of tons of public and private bureaucracies.

Jonathan Haidt's work is a good place to start for academic and media political bias.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 20 November 2017 06:54:43AM *  0 points [-]

I think the crux of our disagreement is that you are far more trusting of large institutions and social scientists than I am

No, the crux of our disagreement is that you are sufficiently unfamiliar with the academic world that you see it purely through the narrow prism of your favorite political topic and therefore lump everyone whose positions you disagree with as part of a vague faction of "feminist ideology".

I brought up Koss and MacKinnon to show that feminist ideology is highly influential on the current party line about sexual violence in polite society, the workplace, and academia, and that it is not from a neutral source,

But you haven't done anything to show that their positions have anything to do with "feminist ideology" (whatever that is) nor that it is non-neutral. Of course it's true that their positions aren't, say, right-wing, but I don't see how the mere fact that they don't agree with right-wing cultural views implies that they should be distrusted. You can't say "these people have views which indicate that feminists are right about something, therefore they're biased!" That's obviously a terrible argument, it's circular.

or from the social consensus of the population

I don't see why the "social consensus of the population" should be trusted to answer questions of sociology and criminology.

But it's undeniable that these ideas came from feminism

Sure I deny it. I don't see how a survey of college students "comes from feminism", it seems to come straight out of ordinary sociological methodology to me. I didn't perceive that the paper in question made any methodological commitments which tied it to feminism. As far as I can tell, the only thing that makes it "feminist" is that the survey total came out to be 6%. If the authors had used the exact same approach and come up with a figure of 0.5%, you wouldn't perceive anything "feminist" about it, and would probably be parading it around as an example of heterodox research that needs to be broadcasted.

and were imposed top-down via institutions

I deny that too. You haven't given any evidence of that. You pointed out that lots of important institutions have endorsed the research(ers) in question. That is evidence that the research(ers) is high quality, but it's not evidence that it was "imposed".

I brought up Lisak's shadiness to suggest that the sexual assault field is full of perverse incentives

First, there's no such thing as a "sexual assault field". Lisak is a psychiatrist, as I pointed out.

Second, it's easy enough to find singular examples of research problems in any field, so your claim is totally spurious (see for comparison the people who bloviate about the Sokal Hoax while ignoring similar hoaxes perpetuated in hard science journals, for instance).

Lisak cannot answer basic questions about his methodology

He gave some answers, just not in response to a partisan blog post. You can find them elsewhere (Google it).

Comment author: Andaro 17 November 2017 12:26:40PM 0 points [-]

I see downvotes without arguments.

I don't care about the karma, as it buys me nothing. However, I will point out that this is a sign of epistemic closure and that nothing I wrote was either unkind, untrue or irrelevant from an altruistic point of view.

It is up to you not to cause harm.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 17 November 2017 01:53:50PM 2 points [-]

You're being downvoted because you're using a thread about sexual violence as a platform for pushing your POV on an entirely different subject.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 17 November 2017 06:36:28AM *  2 points [-]

Sorry but talking about getting revenge on mosquitoes sounds ridiculous.

Tbh I don't think I've talked about being in EA in person but if I did I would just say that it's the right thing to do, because some things are more important than personal interests.

Comment author: Marcus_N 15 November 2017 07:50:40AM *  0 points [-]

Academia and the media do have a high level of ideological conformity, and I am not the first person to make this kind of criticism.

Feminism has greatly influenced the present-day understanding of sexual assault and sexual harassment. In fact, both of these terms come from feminist legal activism. The word "sexual assault" was popularized in 1971.

If you look at the careers of central feminist legal scholars and researchers, like Catharine MacKinnon and Mary Koss, you will find that they have been incredibly influential. Here is an excerpt from one of the many awards that Koss has received:

In her work on gender-based violence, Koss served on the National Academy of Sciences Panel on Violence Against Women. She has twice testified before the US Senate and participated in congressional briefings. She sits on the Coordinating Committee of the Sexual Violence Research Initiative, funded by the Global Forum and the Ford Foundation based in Johannesburg, South Africa. She has consulted with the World Bank, United Nations, World Health Organization, and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the US Departments of Education and Justice. Her current work involves advising the Gallup Organization on their survey of sexual assault prevalence in the US Air Force and advising Social Science International in their work with implementation and evaluation of sexual assault prevention in the Air Force. She recently served as Rapporteur on gender-based violence at the 4th Milestones of a Global Campaign for Violence Prevention in Geneva.

While EAs are working hard to save lives and struggling for mainstream acceptance, Mary Koss is hanging out at the WHO and the DOJ and collecting awards. How come? What has Koss accomplished? Something much more valuable than saving lives (in the current political climate). Koss designed the study that found that 1 in 5 women are supposedly raped, the statistic that launched a thousand rape seminars.

The work of Koss, MacKinnon, and all the other feminist figures, influences policy from the university, to the workplace, to high schools, to global bodies like the UN and the Hague. This feminist framework has became the bedrock of respectable middle-class sexual ethics, which is mandatory due to policies of the workplace and university that are necessary due to state coercion via EEOC sexual harassment law and Title IX. This framework was not adopted due to its accuracy or fruitfulness, it was adopted for political reasons. When put into practice, it creates alienation between men and women, and gross violations of civil liberties.

Everything you think you know about sexual assault, sexual violence, and sexual harassment actually comes from the tireless influence of feminist legal activism that has been operating for decades. Regardless of whether you think this perspective is correct or not, it's important to understand the history of where your foundational moral concepts come from so that they can be examined.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 17 November 2017 04:27:35AM *  0 points [-]

Academia and the media do have a high level of ideological conformity

As far as I can tell this is pretty much false. I've seen lots of ideological diversity in both. Do you have any evidence for your position?

I am not the first person to make this kind of criticism

No, but among people who are actually informed and make this criticism, they don't blindly wave it as a bludgeon against the mass of evidence which doesn't suit their opinions.

Feminism has greatly influenced the present-day understanding of sexual assault and sexual harassment

That would make sense, since feminists are people whose job it is to understand these sorts of things.

If you look at the careers of central feminist legal scholars and researchers, like Catharine MacKinnon and Mary Koss, you will find that they have been incredibly influential

Yes, it seems like they are regarded as experts by large, competent, nonpartisan institutions.

While EAs are working hard to save lives and struggling for mainstream acceptance

EA has very good mainstream acceptance given how new it is.

How come? What has Koss accomplished?

She has done research and advocacy which was regarded as excellent by large, competent organizations.

The work of Koss, MacKinnon, and all the other feminist figures, influences policy from the university, to the workplace, to high schools, to global bodies like the UN and the Hague.

Yes. That's because they thought it was very good. I'm still not sure what your argument is.

Everything you think you know about sexual assault, sexual violence, and sexual harassment actually comes from the tireless influence of feminist legal activism

What? Where did that come from? Mary Koss is an academic psychiatrist. Do you not know the difference between psychiatric research and legal activism?

Regardless of whether you think this perspective is correct or not, it's important to understand the history of where your foundational moral concepts come from

"Our knowledge of gender violence come from a world-renowned psychiatrist." I'm kind of sad that this is the best argument you can give.

Comment author: Marcus_N 16 November 2017 02:21:18AM *  0 points [-]

Your response comes off as very defensive and lacking in substance, so I don't have much to say other than reiterating my previous views.

Intent is a critical part of moral and legal philosophy, and rape is a general intent crime. The stigma for rape comes from a time when rape was considered to be an unambiguous or obviously intentional violation, such as a stranger jumping out of the bushes. It is both inaccurate and socially harmful to apply this stigma to a wider range of situations that may involve lack of intent or male-female communication problems.

I think the statistical approach to rape is barking up the wrong tree. Lisak's work, whether quantitative or qualitative is especially untrustworthy, and sheds doubt on the entire field. Using a more conservative, and less-debatable criteria for rape is essential, because the more aggressive definitions have large externalities in terms of distrust between men and women, policies that destroy civil liberties, and tear apart institutions and communities with finger-pointing.

People can interpret terms like "want to" differently. Here is a study by feminists discussing a category of "consensual unwanted sex."

As for other people's sexual psychology and consent practices, our perspectives seem very different, so there is little point in discussing it further.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 17 November 2017 04:19:58AM 0 points [-]

Your response comes off as very defensive and lacking in substance

Is that because I gave a point by point rebuttal to each of your ideas?

Intent is a critical part of moral and legal philosophy

Actually, in consequentialism intent is irrelevant.

The stigma for rape comes from a time when rape was considered to be an unambiguous or obviously intentional violation, such as a stranger jumping out of the bushes. It is both inaccurate and socially harmful to apply this stigma to a wider range of situations

That doesn't follow. The stigma for rape also comes from a time when the world population was less than 5 billion, but that doesn't mean that rapes that happened when the world population was more than 5 billion aren't equally bad.

I think the statistical approach to rape is barking up the wrong tree

Why?

Lisak's work, whether quantitative or qualitative is especially untrustworthy,

Why? That article doesn't do much to indicate that he is untrustworthy. Right-wing blogs on the Internet are not very trustworthy either, so I'm not sure why I should take anything at face value here.

and sheds doubt on the entire field.

What field? You do realize that "feminism" is not an academic field, right?

Using a more conservative, and less-debatable criteria for rape is essential

What is debatable or controversial about the statements in the surveys used in Lisak's study? Can you name a kind of sexual assault which would count as rape in that study, but which we shouldn't care much about?

because the more aggressive definitions have large externalities in terms of distrust between men and women

Pretty sure that there's just as much distrust whether rape is accidental or not.

People can interpret terms like "want to" differently

And in none of those ways is it okay to have sex with someone who doesn't want to.

Here is a study by feminists

What makes you say they are feminists?

discussing a category of "consensual unwanted sex."

And also discussing a category of "nonconsensual wanted sex," indicating that Lisak's figures may well be underestimates.

Comment author: Andaro 15 November 2017 01:17:44PM -3 points [-]

However, hidden among our gropers, there are probably paraphiliacs with biastophilia or pedophilia, the paraphilias that motivate rapists and child molesters.

Be careful about the statistics, however. Consensual sex with individuals under the age of consent is not rape - it's consensual sex with individuals under the age of consent. Treating them the same reduces the incentive to ask for consent and actually respect when it is not given. It also disincentivizes overall mutually beneficial relations that contain a sexual motivation at least on one side. Both of these effects can make young people worse off.

It's important to rember that antisexual violence is also violence. This includes bans on consensual sex that are enforced through police force or vigilantism. Nonviolent individuals who never violated the consent principle can still find themselves being raped and beaten up for victimless crimes, often in prison under state supervision, which society condones. This also applies to bans of consensual prostitution and other victimless crimes.

Distinguishing between consensual and nonconsensual conduct is certainly not easy, especially to satisfy a high standard of evidence. However, throwing out the consent principle altogether is not a solution either. It's also worth noting that consensual sex is a substitute for rape.

Suicide attempts are not always fatal: 25 people attempt suicide for every death.

This is a problem in its own right, as it indicates that a large number of people are alive against their will at each time. This is a consequence of nonconsensual bans on good suicide methods. These bans are a violation of the consent principle even worse than rape, as the associated violation is even more existential.

Some will argue that saving lives is good even if it violates the consent principle, e.g. because life contains pleasure or can have positive externalities on others. However, the same can be said about sex, and yet you clearly don't treat nonconsensual sex as a good thing. So why should nonconsensual life be a good thing? If society does not even recognize the consent principle when my very life is concerned, why should I care about it in the sexual domain if I'm a sexually self-interested individual?

For every 208 people protected from rape, a rough estimate of 1 life will be saved due to the related suicide risk. (See also: the “sexual violence reduction as a life saver” section.) One lifetime includes up to ~80,000 hours of work.

I think it's absurd to classify suicide as a risk of productivity loss. After all, suicide is a choice. It's like quitting a job or moving out of a country. That's not a risk, it's a personal decision. Pretending that people owe you the omission of such choices so that you can harvest more productivity from them - to what end, by the way? - is a cynical attack on the consent principle itself. That said, to the degree to which these altered suicide statistics reflect additional suffering caused by rape, they are still a good argument for efforts to prevent rape. But we already knew rape was harmful, so no novel insight added.

By the way, there are counterintuitive ways to prevent far more rape still. For example, nonhuman animals in nature also rape each other frequently. In fact, if you think human children cannot consent to sex because of their lack of cognitive ability, then all sex between nonhuman animals must be rape. After all, even the smartest chimp is significantly stupider still than even a 5-year-old low-IQ human. So destroying nature and wiping out wildlife is one of the top priorities if you actually want to prevent the most rape. Not joking by the way. The logic is sound.

But by far the most efficient way to prevent the most rape is to increase x-risk.

By far the biggest determinant in how much rape (and other nonconsensual violence) there will be in the future is whether space colonization happens or not. If humanity spreads throughout the galaxy and perhaps beyond, the total amount of sexual violence will increase by many orders of magnitude.

In contrast, if human civilization fails or collapses permanently to a lower level of sophistication without spreading into space, the phenomena of rape and nc torture will be limited to the surface of just one planet, for just one billion years or so. Not so bad in comparison!

Now some have said that increasing x-risk is a form of violence, and we should always avoid violence. But in reality, the exact opposite is true: Decreasing x-risk causes orders of magnitude more violence, as the entire universe except Earth is nonviolent by nature, and x-risk reducers actively plan to change that. After all, spreading human specifics throughout the universe is the whole point of x-risk reduction. And what is more central to the human spirit than violence, sadism and sex (often in combination)? These are human constants.

Again, not a joke. I take this seriously and think the EA movement is causing serious harm by increasing the total amount of violence in the future indirectly through x-risk reduction.

There is also the reality that all reproduction is nonconsensual from the perspective of the child. Babies do not consent to be born, but they are all violated in various ways, including from the suffering of birth and infancy, not to mention their utter lack of control what happens to their body. From this perspective, life itself is a form of rape. Again, no joke. The antinatalists are right about this, which constitutes another argument against x-risk reduction.

Comment author: kbog  (EA Profile) 15 November 2017 05:26:21PM 4 points [-]

After all, suicide is a choice. It's like quitting a job or moving out of a country. That's not a risk, it's a personal decision.

That doesn't make it not a risk. If you found out that something was causing people to quit their EA jobs or move out of the country, you would be concerned and try to find a way to prevent people from being motivated to do that.

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