The collapse of FTX and longtermism

AD1184

Celestial
You have probably seen in the news the collapse of the cryptocurrency exchange FTX, and stories about its drug-addled charlatan founder, Sam Bankman-Fried.

What has come to light is that Bankman-Fried, along with a growing proportion of influential big tech types, and possibly policymakers, is an adherent of twin philosophical fads called effective altruism and longtermism. Effective altruism is, in simplified terms, the principle that one's altruistic efforts ought to be optimized to result in the greatest good. Longtermism is the principle that one ought to take a very long view of humanity's existence, and calculate one's efforts to performing the greatest good throughout the rest of humanity's existence, rather than in the present. So, expending one's resources to help victims of flooding in poor countries in the present is out. Instead, the greatest moral good is achieved in devoting our efforts to minimizing existential risks to humanity and bringing about space colonization, so that we might build an intergalactic empire supporting exponentially more humans living not-miserable lives, the majority of whom will only have a digital, rather than physical, existence (I am not making this up). Members of the movement are also obsessed with the idea of a global apocalypse being brought about by artificial intelligence, like in the Terminator movies, and the ever-present need to take steps to avert this. Bankman-Fried is said to be consumed with this idea.

There is a good article about the movement here:


Ever wondered why Elon Musk is so dead-set on starting an otherwise useless Mars colony? Or why Mark Zuckerberg recently made an abrupt change of tack to make the goal of his company the realization of his ridiculous "Metaverse" concept? Longtermism might have the answer.

The leading lights in the movement are two Oxford University philosophers, William MacAskill and Nick Bostrom. Bostrom came up with the "simulation hypothesis" a few years ago (which incidentally is another thing that Elon Musk has spoken about publicly on multiple occasions and apparently takes seriously). You will note the religious quality of these beliefs about humanity's purpose, and their certainty about where we are headed as a species and what are the most desirable circumstances for future humans to live under.

People holding these beliefs are clearly dangerous were they to achieve positions of power, as they can lead the adherent to believe in a radical departure from traditional morality, and justify deliberate harm to many in the present in order to bring about an imagined utopian future. Their beliefs are equally repugnant to those traditionally liberal, conservative, or socialist. There is a suggestion that Bankman-Fried's belief in these principles led him to see conning people out of large amounts of money as a justifiable means to the end of supporting the goals of the effective altruism movement. He bankrolled many non-profits devoted to effective altruism, and couched his answers to many interviewers' questions about his personal philosophy in the jargon of the EA movement.
 
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pigfarmer

tall, thin, irritable
Well, that's a big chunk that'll take a while to digest.

In a similar vein, at least in the context of long term social planning that gives pause, I saw this today.

Schumer Says US Needs More Immigration Because Americans Are ‘Not Reproducing’

Schumer Says US Needs More Immigration Because Americans Are ‘Not Reproducing’​

DCNF - Schumer DACA Amnesty - Featured

Screenshot/Rumble

D HUTCHISONREPORTER
November 16, 20223:22 PM ET
FONT SIZE:

Democratic Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York called on Republicans Wednesday to join in passing a pathway to citizenship for “all undocumented” in the United States, citing the fact that Americans were “not reproducing.”

We have a population that is not reproducing on its own with the same level that it used to,” Schumer said during the press conference. “The only way we’re going to have a great future is if we welcome and embrace immigrants, the dreamers and all of them. Because our ultimate goal to help the dreamers but get a path to citizenship for all 11 million or however many undocumented there are here.

President Joe Biden sought to codify Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) through a federal regulation in August, while also seeking the passage of legislation that has been blocked by a Republican filibuster.
“So my message to Senate Republicans is this: Work with us,” Schumer said. “Work with us on this widely supported policy, so we can reach agreement that will protect families and strengthen our economy, just as we passed other bipartisan accomplishments, which they thought couldn’t be done. Guns, veterans, CHIPS.”

“We can get it done here. We can get it done here. If we can get ten Republicans to join us, we will get this done by the end of the year,” Schumer continued. “It’s a smart thing to do, it’s the right thing to do, it’s the moral thing to do, it’s the humane thing to do, and I want to assure everyone here we will not stop fighting till we get a fix for DACA, a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers and a pathway to citizenship for all undocumented.”
President Barack Obama instituted in 2012 to cover illegal aliens who arrived as minors. The program, which has been tied up in litigation, covers about 800,000 people.
Republican attorneys general and immigration hawks threatened to sue the Trump administration if it didn’t roll back DACA, while Democratic-led states opposing any rollback of the Obama administration’s program with litigation of their own. There are at least 11.4 million illegal immigrants currently residing in the United States as of January 1, 2018, according to a Department of Homeland Security estimate.

Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, the Senate minority leader, did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.
 

nivek

As Above So Below
People holding these beliefs are clearly dangerous were they to achieve positions of power

I think its too late for that, some of those people may be in positions of power already whilst others are in positions to strongly influence people in positions of power outside their cultish ideology...In my opinion, this movement is extremely dangerous, perhaps more so than the WEF in the long term, no pun intended...The Guardian wrote a report on this matter here:


Honestly I think modern technology is increasingly becoming detrimental to human existence because of the ways it is being wielded by corrupt power hungry people in this world...

...
 

pigfarmer

tall, thin, irritable
This sounds very much like a 21st century spin on 19th century largesse. A comment on the disparity between the very, very rich and most of the rest of us. What's old is new again - in this case the Gilded Age.
 

Dejan Corovic

As above, so bellow
Good example of longtermisam is denying UFO disclosure to the people under the guise of people's immaturity and national security.

My studies of UFO physical effects lead me to believe that there is a high probability that UFO technology is mostly equivalent to human tech from 50s and 60s. If this tech was in public domain we would have a realistic chance of sorting out global warming in about 50 years by installing solar panels in orbit. If aliens can do it there is in principle no reason why we can't do it.
 

wwkirk

Celestial
Good example of longtermisam is denying UFO disclosure to the people under the guise of people's immaturity and national security.

My studies of UFO physical effects lead me to believe that there is a high probability that UFO technology is mostly equivalent to human tech from 50s and 60s. If this tech was in public domain we would have a realistic chance of sorting out global warming in about 50 years by installing solar panels in orbit.
I don't understand. How could the equivalent of 50s or 60s human tech enable travel across the galaxy?
Or are you an adherent of the ultraterrestrial or breakaway civilization hypotheses?
 

Dejan Corovic

As above, so bellow
I don't understand. How could the equivalent of 50s or 60s human tech enable travel across the galaxy?
Or are you an adherent of the ultraterrestrial or breakaway civilization hypotheses?

I've been studying physical effects that UFO witnesses observed in about 200-300 cases, and at that, only physical effects that fall within mainstream science.

All these physical effects can be explained by physics knowledge that we had not later then 1930-40s. Basically, it all reduces to electrodynamics, quantum mechanics and general relativity. So my inference is that if we can explain external effects, its very likely we can explain what is going on inside as well. Another thing is that our science is really, really very developed, much more so than general public is aware. There isn't much left that we don't know. We, famously, measured some subtle properties of electrons with accuracy of 14 digits. That's really unimaginable from point of view of, say, 100 years ago.

Generally speaking general public becomes aware of scientific discoveries only once when these discoveries are turned into consumer goods, say 5-50 years later. For example science behind atom bomb was understood in 1920-30s, but first one was delivered in 1945. So, there is a long time gap between science and technology.

On top of that, technology is only a very small subset of science. Possibly only about 10% of science has commercial use. But, most of technology is about playing one scientific trick through gradual improvements. For example, medical NMR scanners in hospitals work on the same principle as explosive detectors in airports. And all the spectroscopes use principals that are related to NMR principles. And so on. Number of usable scientific tricks is not that large, and because laws of nature are the same in the whole universe aliens have very similar tool set as we do..
 
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wwkirk

Celestial
I've been studying physical effects that UFO witnesses observed in about 200-300 cases, and at that, only physical effects that fall within mainstream science.

All these physical effects can be explained by physics knowledge that we had not later then 1930-40s. Basically, it all reduces to electrodynamics, quantum mechanics and general relativity. So my inference is that if we can explain external effects, its very likely we can explain what is going on inside as well. Another thing is that our science is really, really very developed, much more so than general public is aware. There isn't much left that we don't know. We, famously, measured some subtle properties of electrons with accuracy of 14 digits. That's really unimaginable from point of view of, say, 100 years ago.

Generally speaking general public becomes aware of scientific discoveries only once when these discoveries are turned into consumer goods, say 5-50 years later. For example science behind atom bomb was understood in 1920-30s, but first one was delivered in 1945. So, there is a long time gap between science and technology.

On top of that, technology is only a very small subset of science. Possibly only about 10% of science has commercial use. But, most of technology is about playing one scientific trick through gradual improvements. For example, medical NMR scanners in hospitals work on the same principle as explosive detectors in airports. And all the spectroscopes use principals that are related to NMR principles. And so on. Number of usable scientific tricks is not that large, and because laws of nature are the same in the whole universe aliens have very similar tool set as we do..
So, is practical travel among the stars something in which the aliens are far ahead of us? Or are humans currently able, or soon to be able, to do the same?
 
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Dejan Corovic

As above, so bellow
So, is practical travel among the stars something in which the aliens are far ahead of us? Or are humans currently able, or soon to be able, to do the same?

My impression is, that some governments deliberately chose to withhold technology that would enable us to travel to the stars for sake of an ongoing political narrative. In order to prevent general public from finding this out this technology was given to private companies, which are not obliged to respond to FOIA requests. I believe such technology was available to us approximately since 60s or 70s, or around that time. That knowledge mostly came out of crashed UFOs and probably we could had gone to Moon with it.

What I'm trying to say is, difference between our science and what we know and alien science is very small. We need relatively little effort to bridge the gap. Obviously, if it wasn't for a shroud of secrecy and ridicule.

This clip might or might not serve as an illustration, pls go to 23:36 if you are not taken there straight away:


View: https://youtu.be/Gja6UEQ5rJo?t=1416


As a matter of a fact, one can easily come up with a long trail of such stories and build a picture that I'm suggesting.

Personally, I think that tech should had been released into public domain, because economic benefit of it would by far outweigh any political irritation it might had caused. Release of atom bomb, Internet, GPS and semiconductors didn't make our competitors any stronger then us in relative terms. It takes lot more then just knowledge to out-compete somebody.
 
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nivek

As Above So Below

'I would give anything to be able to go back and do things over': SBF offers grovelling apology to FTX 'family' over $36BN collapse - as employees expose debauched culture of partner-swapping and drug-taking


The founder of the company behind arguably the biggest crypto catastrophe of all time has written to his FTX 'family' to say that he is sorry. In a letter sent Tuesday, and first published by CoinDesk, former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried wrote in part: 'I didn't mean for any of this to happen, and I would give anything to be able to go back and do things over again. You were my family.' He continued in the letter - posted on his behalf through the company Slack by another employee, as SBF has now been removed from the internal messenger: 'I've lost that, and our old home is an empty warehouse of monitors. When I turn around, there's no one left to talk to.' His apology comes as the CEO faces a possible House investigation over allegations that he used FTX money to fund bets with Alameda Research, a sister company and trading firm run by his one-time girlfriend Caroline Ellison. Just a week ago, it emerged that Ellison wrote on her Tumblr account in February 2020 that she made a 'foray into poly,' referring to the practice of having multiple partners. In addition, SBF, as he has come to be known, ran a glorified frat house out of his $40 million home in the affluent Albany district in the Bahamas, reports the New York Post. A local resident told the Post: 'The feeling was that they were treating Albany like a frat house.' He added: 'They would walk around in sweats and T-shirts. That was not the Albany lifestyle that residents there signed up for. The typical dress was Ralph Lauren sport jackets. Sam and his group did not seem to fit the part.' The Post article details SBF and his staff pulling all-nighters while simultaneously partying and working, all the while fueled by amphetamines.

.
 

Dejan Corovic

As above, so bellow

'I would give anything to be able to go back and do things over': SBF offers grovelling apology to FTX 'family' over $36BN collapse - as employees expose debauched culture of partner-swapping and drug-taking


The founder of the company behind arguably the biggest crypto catastrophe of all time has written to his FTX 'family' to say that he is sorry. In a letter sent Tuesday, and first published by CoinDesk, former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried wrote in part: 'I didn't mean for any of this to happen, and I would give anything to be able to go back and do things over again. You were my family.' He continued in the letter - posted on his behalf through the company Slack by another employee, as SBF has now been removed from the internal messenger: 'I've lost that, and our old home is an empty warehouse of monitors. When I turn around, there's no one left to talk to.' His apology comes as the CEO faces a possible House investigation over allegations that he used FTX money to fund bets with Alameda Research, a sister company and trading firm run by his one-time girlfriend Caroline Ellison. Just a week ago, it emerged that Ellison wrote on her Tumblr account in February 2020 that she made a 'foray into poly,' referring to the practice of having multiple partners. In addition, SBF, as he has come to be known, ran a glorified frat house out of his $40 million home in the affluent Albany district in the Bahamas, reports the New York Post. A local resident told the Post: 'The feeling was that they were treating Albany like a frat house.' He added: 'They would walk around in sweats and T-shirts. That was not the Albany lifestyle that residents there signed up for. The typical dress was Ralph Lauren sport jackets. Sam and his group did not seem to fit the part.' The Post article details SBF and his staff pulling all-nighters while simultaneously partying and working, all the while fueled by amphetamines.

.

There are actually 4-5 high profile cases where crypto coin entrepreneurs managed to escape by stealing $1B or more. At least this one didn't escape :)
 

nivek

As Above So Below
the greatest good.

The idea of acting for the greater good is very subjective, although typically considered an objective idea, its implimentation wields a cold calculated reasoning as a driving force revealing the subjective manipulative nature of this ideology...

...
 

pigfarmer

tall, thin, irritable
The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one. Seems logical but Spock’s mommy once gave him a talking-to about all that …..
 

Dejan Corovic

As above, so bellow
The idea of acting for the greater good is very subjective, although typically considered an objective idea, its implimentation wields a cold calculated reasoning as a driving force revealing the subjective manipulative nature of this ideology...

...

While that's a tough one and usually there is hidden personal agenda, that applies mostly in a political context.

But there is an exception, when that happens in scientific context. Then truly greater good is good of many. If we didn't invest in science earlier on we wouldn't have an understanding of how epidemics spread and how to develop vaccines to stop them. But that is not the only case, there are obviously thousands of smaller scientific discoveries on which our daily lives completely depend on.
 

nivek

As Above So Below
While that's a tough one and usually there is hidden personal agenda, that applies mostly in a political context.

But there is an exception, when that happens in scientific context. Then truly greater good is good of many. If we didn't invest in science earlier on we wouldn't have an understanding of how epidemics spread and how to develop vaccines to stop them. But that is not the only case, there are obviously thousands of smaller scientific discoveries on which our daily lives completely depend on.

Scientists doing research may have best intentions in mind however implementation of scientific discoveries and advancements are not always done with best intentions by those funding such research...That was clear with this latest pandemic...

...
 

Dejan Corovic

As above, so bellow
Scientists doing research may have best intentions in mind however implementation of scientific discoveries and advancements are not always done with best intentions by those funding such research...That was clear with this latest pandemic...

...

Well, that's not a fault of scientists. Science by itself is neither good nor bad, but it has positive effect on our wellbeing.
 
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