Comments on: Why it makes sense for Larry Page to donate his billions to Elon Musk A slice of lime in the soda Sun, 26 Oct 2014 19:05:02 +0000 hourly 1 By: fifa 15 coins xbox Thu, 25 Sep 2014 21:32:04 +0000 I definitely like that i don’t must transform moisturizer after i get a hankering to bomb down rad trails at mind smashing speeds as an alternative to gussying up and being all ladylike, not all moisturizers can pull double responsibility so be ready to try a couple of distinctive manufacturers for the requires just before getting 1 (or two) that do the work.

By: GregAlex Tue, 15 Apr 2014 06:55:33 +0000 FingersFly… “Do you want to help disabled students, or the gifted ones?” good question. Will the gifted ones do things to help disabled students? That’s really what this discussion is about isn’t it?

Elon Musk is one of the gifted ones. He wants to help the world through sustainable energy and has the pieces to make a huge shift in humankind in that and by taking us to a new world. But he might not have the money (he’s trying to make SpaceX profit fund the settlement of Mars).

Of interest, he also recognises that humanity moves in stages, it doesn’t always go forwards, and there’s a real possibility that we could lose our ability to colonise Mars in 100 years if we don’t do it soon. Unlikely – but environmental catastrophes or war etc could hit us hard. A Mars city will be a potential protected pocket of civilisation that can do things we won’t be able to do on Earth, and ultimately bring much good to Earth.

By: MNRC Sat, 05 Apr 2014 01:20:51 +0000 Monsanto manufactured Agent Orange that had devastated the lives of millions in Vietnam. It is currently trying to prevent states from passing laws requiring the labeling of genetically-modified foods. It is also working hard to sue small farmers in developing countries whose crops have been accidentally cross-pollinated by Monsanto-owned crops and trying to squeeze money out of already poor people.

I can’t believe you mentioned Monsanto with the likes of Apple and Google. No one even knows the long term repercussions of eating Monsanto’s genetically modified plants. I hardly consider them a positive influence on the world.

By: Gaelen Sun, 30 Mar 2014 13:23:22 +0000 I think this misses the point. 30 billion given to the some of the poorest, least connected people on earth will pay for a lot of school, for the a non-wood fire stove, for whatever those people feel would measurably improve their lives. This is a classic utilitarian argument–the money would improve those peoples lives, and decrease human suffering to a much greater extent, if just given to the poor rather than invested in to an entrepreneur whose innovation will only marginally improve our own. It’s hard to put a price on a family’s new found ability to keep their kids in school past the third grade.

By: DDanenfelzer Fri, 28 Mar 2014 16:58:50 +0000 Felix,

I can’t agree with your hypothesis. First of all, while your tech centered ideals certainly can show that Google has made the internet a better place, I’m not sure how you’re jumping from that into the real world.
As Allen Brooke recently wrote on Quark about finding a purpose, many of the over educated, those who have time to spend thinking about colonies on Mars and the benefits of Google, have turned Maslow’s Needs Hierarchy upside down. I think your arguments that Google and Elon Musk have or will do more from mankind come from the perspective that the basic needs like food, shelter, clothing, etc. of most people are satisfied. Therefore everyone just needs to have better access to information, the ability to develop their self-esteem and think about moral and philosophical issues all day long.
The fact is more than a 80% of the world’s population has to think about the basic needs in Maslow’s pyramid. Bill Gates and friends may not solve all the world’s problems but they are trying to solve the basic problems that plague our society. I doubt that someone looking to make a few dollars to buy his family foods is also pulling out his IPhone to get recommendations from Google Maps on where the best new Ramen truck is, or checking his Google+ account to setup a Hangout with his pals.
Google has done amazing things for the 20% of the world that has 75% of the money and resources Nonprofits can and do certainly benefit when talented, creative minds like Larry Page, Bill Gates and Elon Musk use their brain power to make the world a better place.
I just don’t agree that spending billions upon billions to create a colony on Mars will in anyway help us figure out how the 80% that don’t have Google can stop thinking about things that you, I and the other 20% take for granted.

By: fingersfly Wed, 26 Mar 2014 17:44:02 +0000 The equation implied here is even more complex. Mush receives government support for some of his projects (tax breaks and infrastructure donation to start a company in Texas, for instance). So here is the power of government, again, to make the big movements.

But in futures unmeasurable, the ability to lift one person’s education or quality of life in order to be someone who may change the world — rather than dead from disease, cannot be underestimated. One in a million is all we need.

Thus, both private and nonprofit interests are required to help on survival as well as visionary scales. Do you want to help disabled students, or the gifted ones? We each choose for the moment.

Felix, there’s really no way to compare the merits of compassion vs. innovation or policy.

But there is a very good further discussion to be had on the merits of choosing which contributions get the blessing of tax impunity. That’s a big reason why people are “obsessed with results.” They’re trying to win the confidence of more contributors, who are mostly folks hoping to get a tax deduction from their support.

By: Christofurio Wed, 26 Mar 2014 14:13:21 +0000 Will Mars someday be known as “Pageus”? or “Pagune”?

By: y2kurtus Wed, 26 Mar 2014 01:53:39 +0000 “From the point of view of someone like Larry Page, however, it’s easy to see how the idea of simply giving his money directly to the poor might not appeal. The short-term effects would be wonderful, but also limited; the long-term effects would be relatively slim and hard to discern.”

– Well said Felix… a compelling argument against increasing the resources we allocate towards traditional transfer payments which cost a ton and yield few measurable benefits. Best hopes for an expanded EITC to help those who’s labor isn’t worth very much and a more narrowly focused approach to income redistribution for those without catastrophic limitations like blindness, or unusable limbs.

By: BROYL Tue, 25 Mar 2014 20:53:52 +0000 I usually agree with your thoughts on philanthropy Felix, but I disagree here. Or I guess I don’t feel that you have made a complete argument. What I’d want to see to compare the impact of various asset allocations would be to look at counterfactuals. So for example what is the counterfactual of Gates spending the money that he has invested in his foundation in a way more in keeping with typical billionaire spending habits (I guess mostly investment and bequeathment). Likewise, what is the counterfactual to Google never having being created. The thing about counterfactuals this unwieldy is that you can’t really give a right answer, but I do think they can at least help clarify gut feelings. My gut feeling is that no Google would mean no real change in the world as we know it other than that the particular niche Google now occupies would be occupied by a different search engine. Maybe this would be a better search engine, maybe a worse, but in either case it wouldn’t be a very meaningful difference. My gut feeling is also that if Gates had invested his money differently a large number of people currently living would have died of disease. Maybe a few thousand people, maybe a few hundred thousand, maybe a few million. These than are the cases I would want to compare to answer the question, which endeavor has had a more transformational impact on our world? Is a slightly more effective search engine equal to say a hundred thousand lives saved (this sounds weird but I think the question has meaning and don’t mean it as snark)? This is the kind of thinking and comparison that would have yielded an interesting insight. Like I said I usually agree with you but I think the above post would benefit from more engagement along these lines, and I hope you revisit the issue. We do agree about government though.