I try not to talk too much about my personal life but some of my existing patrons suggested that I make this post. I’ve ended up in a sort of rough situation recently and could use some help. 

New to LessWrong?

New Comment
17 comments, sorted by Click to highlight new comments since: Today at 10:28 PM

Wow, thank you for doing that. I admire you standing up for what you believed in. Donated.




Do you have a PayPal or something other than Patreon? I’ll make a one time donation but have an (perhaps unreasonable) abhorrence to Patreon’s recurring model.

Yeah I'll PM it to you, I didn't want to list it on the blog because it has my legal name attached to it.

Did I actually do the right thing here? I honestly couldn’t tell you. There’s certainly an argument that could be made that I didn’t fully think through the consequences of my actions or what effect they would have on me. There’s also an argument that could be made that my defiance was rather pointless since the olive bar is still open, and if I was going to do something that crazy, I should have saved it for when I knew it would make a difference.

The problem is that barring near-omniscience you can’t really know when that will be, all you can do is play your hand and let the cards fall where they may. Would I have still tried to do this knowing everything I do now? Probably not. Not because of the consequences to myself, but because it didn’t end up working. The olive bar remains open so my act of defiance didn’t accomplish what I set out to do. If it had resulted in the olive bar being closed, I think I would have done it despite the consequences. Maybe there was something else I could have done to force the issue more, maybe I should have tried to outright sabotage the cooling mechanisms, maybe I should have called the local news, maybe I should have tried to convince my coworkers to go along with it to make it harder for them to get rid of the problem person, I really don’t know and hindsight is 2020. It’s always easier to tell after it’s too late to matter.

That they are a person who's willing to sacrifice for upholding their moral judgements? Supporting people for not taking harmful actions in a real world Milgrim experiment also seems to be good community behavior.

People here are happy to rally behind this person for something that is ethically identical to what Kim Davis did when she refused to issue same-sex marriage licenses.

There's a consensus that not infecting people with diseases that might kill them is ethically bad and there's no similar ethical consensus for the issue of same-sex marriage licenses.

Here the issue is trading of ethical values for the profit of a particular company. That qualitatively different then trading of different ethical values against each other.

It's hard for my to understand how you think that's identical.

I think the common ideas of ethics is that the kind of personal reasons matter a great deal.

By your standards stealing something from a stranger (whom you are told not to interact with) because you are greedy is ethically identical to giving them a gift because you feel generous as both are personal reasons.

The fact that there are communities with strange ethics, in no way implies that our rationalist community shouldn't have it's resoned ethical norms. We also aren't the work peers of the OP.