In 2018, US households’ total wealth was $98 trillion. Federal government spending in 2018 was $4.094 trillion. If we take the standard investment advice and assume that the government can spend 4% of its savings each year, that means the government would need to acquire $102.35 trillion in this one-time taxation. The math does not work out. (I picked 2018 simply because it was the year for which I found total wealth quickest in a google search. The federal budget has only grown since then.)
When I spoke to someone in a local Walmart pharmacy department in western Maryland a couple of weeks ago, they told me that they weren’t sure if they could give a cancelled second shot to someone else, because they are sent exactly the number of shots they need on the assumption that everyone gets their second shot at 3 weeks. So do double check if that cancelled second appointment can actually be given to someone else. If it can’t, there is absolutely no reason for you not to take it.As far as going out and doing things with your spouse (or anyone else), we know that a single shot of Pfizer/BioNTech is more effective than a single shot of J&J. So unless a place is rejecting people who got J&J, I would so go ahead and present yourself as vaccinated and enjoy yourself (once two weeks have passed).
If in expectation a life involves more suffering than happiness, then it is immoral to create such a life. I think that that is not the case, for most people, there is more happiness than suffering. We justify making the choice for an as-yet-non-existent person the same way we justify making all choices for very small children, and gradually fewer choices as the child gets older: until they are able to make a decision for themselves, somebody else has to make it for them, and all we can do is give the decision to someone we think will act in the child’s best interests.
That’s not a bug, that’s a feature! The prosecutor knows what evidence the prosecutor has, but the defendant knows whether he did the crime. We want the defendant to make the plea decision blind to the strength of the prosecutor’s evidence, because guilty defendants will guess that the prosecutor has strong evidence and plead guilty (even if that guess is wrong), and innocent defendants will guess that the prosecutor has weak evidence and proceed to trial. This is how we want the system to work.
Another idea: as things stand today, prosecutors are only allowed to file charges when they have “probable cause”. Courts won’t put a number on what that means, but you might reasonably approximate it as 25% certainty that the defendant did it. We could insist on a higher standard—preponderance of the evidence (which courts do define as > 50% certainty) or clear and convincing evidence (which courts won’t put a number on but you could reasonably approximate as 75% certainty).
I think you are forgetting a major player in the criminal justice system: the defense attorney. The defense attorney already has both the expertise and the incentive to accurately advise the defendant as to the likelihood of a conviction on each charge.
I think the general strategy should be extreme diversification across asset classes. It might be that the stock market itself goes out of business, and stocks themselves cease to exist, on average once every thousand years. How would we know? There haven’t been stock markets that long. And for a non-cryonicist who expects to have money in the market for maybe 50 years tops, that’s not a problem. For a cryonicist who expects to have money in the market for a thousand years, that is actually a huge problem. So I would say put some money in the stock market. Put some money in REITs. Put some money in cryptocurrency. Put some money into artwork and coin collecting. Put some money in things that have a record of holding value for a thousand years—precious metals and gems, plots of land, water rights. Anything else you can think of that seems not stupid. This way, if any particular class of stuff goes bust, you’ve still got most of your capitol. If it all goes bust, well, probably nobody will be left to revive you anyway so it won’t matter.As a separate strategy, also put some money into biotech and AI specifically, both because that might lead to people figuring out how to revive you, and because if people do figure out how to revive you, it will probably be because biotech and AI have been successful.
I like the idea of a dashboard, but I’m not at all sold on using consumption as a proxy for progress. To take an obvious example, the computer I am on now uses fewer watts than the computer I was on a decade ago, and will therefor show up as a decrease in energy use. Yet it is superior by every metric that we judge computers by. A Tesla will get more miles for the same amount of energy compared to a traditional gas car. In general, I think we may be at a point in history where progress takes the form of producing better quality products with fewer inputs, and a dashboard that focuses on consumption will incorrectly show that as regression. This may be more difficult to actually get numbers for, but I think a better sort of metric might be output over input—number of watt-hours divided by number of hours of human labor used to produce those watt-hours.
Second this. The lawyer part of my brain says to draw up a written contract to make sure you get your share of the cars value back at the end, which just adds to the complexity and tension of the situation. But not drawing up that contract is placing a lot of trust in the housemate. A simple per-mile rate seems much simpler and easy to get out of, and the IRS provides a standard rate for that.
If you plan on taking long trips in the car, or if you plan to have it for ten or fifteen years, or if there is any possibility of a fourth child, you might want to consider a minivan. As the kids get bigger / trips get longer, putting three of them in the back seat of a car, with one uncomfortably in the middle, will get less and less comfortable.
I’m curious how far you go in the other direction. If your Wave stock turned into an extra $50M, would you donate an extra $50M, or an extra $49M, or an extra $40M, or what? As your lifetime earnings go to infinity, is your personal leisure spending bounded?
I think the breakdown is good. I find it more natural to call your level 1 “education” than “raising awareness”, but I guess both terms are used. I think the changes on sexual assault have been a mixed bag and that in at least some circles the pendulum has already swung too far. Reconceptualizing sex between spouses without consent as rape was a good move, reconceptualizing stupid drunk sex where both parties consented at the time as rape was a bad move, and both have definitely happened as a result of this raising awareness.
I share your unease with the “raising awareness” mode of activism. I’m not really sold on these extra simulacra levels as an explanation of that unease. Especially levels 9 and 10, an evolutionary explanation just isn’t interchangeable with an explanation of a biological mechanism. Similarly, a memetic explanation just isn’t interchangeable with a simulacra explanation, a memetic explanation just isn’t an explanation of what psychological process causes a person to utter a sentence, it is an explanation of why certain sentences are uttered given a psychological environment.For me at least, I think the uneasiness with “raising awareness” is more that it is transparently ineffective altruism. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard people “raising awareness” of x type of cancer or of sexual assault or whatever, as though there was anyone on the planet who didn’t know that these things exist. And it seems wildly implausible to me that wearing a ribbon or whatever is actually going to cause anybody to think of a new solution or implement an existing solution more effectively. “Raising awareness” comes off as very transparent pure signaling, simulacra level 3 or 4, and often rather expensive signaling, and I don’t like that.
That case is from the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit, a federal appellate court. It is binding precedent not only in New Hampshire, but also in Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Puerto Rico. And it is the only federal appellate court to have ruled on the issue, which means it is still the most definitive interpretation of the law that there is for the entire country. The ruling is not based on details of statutory wording or legislative intent, so your suggestion that other courts might rule differently based on those things is completely baseless. And it does seem very nature to this retired free speech lawyer. In any free speech case, the government has the burden of showing (1) that there is a significant governmental interest at stake, and (2) that the statute is narrowly tailored to that interest. The government has to present evidence for these two things, and they couldn’t. As the court notes, the constitution “is not satisfied by the assertion of abstract interests”. The country was a very different place a century ago, some states do allow you to photograph a ballot, and the state was not able to point to a single instance of a person photographing a ballot as part of a vote buying scheme. That seems like a good reason to think that it isn’t actually a problem. And even if it were, the court points to two problems with narrow tailoring. One, that the statute prohibits a lot of highly protected political speech, such as the original posts hypothetical. Two, vote buying is already illegal, and there is no reason to think that statutes prohibiting vote buying are inadequate. Note that nothing in that analysis is particular to the New Hampshire statute, it applies equally well to any statute that prohibits people from taking pictures of their ballots. Again, this is a federal appellate court, and the only one to have addressed this issue, so it is the strongest law there is throughout the entire country.
At least in the US, the Free Speech Clause protects your right to photograph your own ballot, though local election officials are often unaware of this. Rideout v. Gardner, 838 F.3d 65 (1st Cir. 2016).
At least in the US, donations to political parties, political campaigns, political action committees, etc, are already not tax deductable (which I take is what you mean by “tax back”). In fact, the amount that a person can donate to such an entity is even limited. See https://blog.turbotax.intuit.com/tax-deductions-and-credits-2/are-your-political-campaign-contributions-tax-deductible-11380/. In the US, tax deductible donations are for 501c3 organizations (named for the section of the internal revenue code in which they are described), and such organizations are already forbidden from engaging in partisan politics and severely limited in the amount of lobbying they can do. The standard proposed here has broader implications than party politics. To pick two hypothetical organizations, the Tough On Crime Institute would be the opposite of the Criminal Justice Reform Association, so by this standard, neither should get tax back. My initial reaction is that I don’t want that result, I want both organizations out there making their cases stronger, not weaker. But I could be talked out of this.I’m also not sure why the Against Unicorns Foundation wouldn’t be a legally valid charity. It might not be a very popular one, but an argument can certainly be made that destroying unicorns prevents them from suffering, and preventing animal suffering is generally regarded as good and specifically listed as a charitable purpose in section 501c3. I don’t think regulators would or should question the validity of that purpose. So by this standard, the Unicorn Conservation Society would also not get tax back? This doesn’t seem right.
I think that if the US population was in a stable state—the number of people in each age bracket staying constant over time—then these numbers would have to converge. But of course the US population is not in a stable state, it is growing, and so there are more young people with lower mortality pulling the average micromorts down.
Care to elaborate on the every day thing? Aside from literal coins, your cell phone is perfectly capable of generating pseudorandom numbers, and I’m almost never without mine.I guess whether your point stands depends on whether we are more concerned with abstract theory or practical decision making.
How often do you encounter a situation where an unpredictable randomization mechanism is unavailable?
How do you reconcile the hypothesis that it escaped from a lab in China with the reports that covid-19 antibodies were found in more than a dozen blood samples taken in Italy in early October 2019, and therefor must have been circulating in Italy in September 2019?