Highlights

  • If we wish, we can redefine the terms egoism and altruism in this way, so that they refer to whether people’s interests include a strong concern for others—it if does, then let’s call them altruists, whether or not acting on this concern for others involves a gain or loss for the “altruist.” (Location 1354)
  • So we should be asking not What is most urgent? but Where can I have the biggest positive impact? That means not just the biggest impact right now or this month or this year, but over the longest period for which it is possible to foresee the consequences of my actions. (Location 1498)
  • Effective altruists have not shown much interest in the intrinsic value of nature. Just as they tend to view values like justice, freedom, equality, and knowledge not as good in themselves but good because of the positive effect they have on social welfare, so they do not value nature as good in itself but instead ask whether preserving nature will be good or bad for animals and humans. (Location 1863)