Effective altruism for jews
Imagine if, one day, you see a burning building with a small child inside. You run into the blaze, pick up the child, and carry them to safety. You would be a hero. Now imagine that this happened to you every two years – you’d save dozens of lives over the course of your life.
This sounds like an odd world. But current evidence suggests it is the world that many people live in. If you earn the typical income in the US, and donate 10% of your earnings each year to the Against Malaria Foundation, you will probably save dozens of lives over your lifetime.
But the world appears to be even stranger, because many people have opportunities that look even better than this. How? First, many people can have a greater impact by working directly on important problems than by donating. Second, other causes might prove even more impactful than global poverty and health, as we’ll discuss below.
In most areas of life, we understand that it’s important to base our decisions on evidence and reason rather than guesswork or gut instinct. When you buy a phone, you will read customer reviews to get the best deal. Certainly, you won’t buy a phone which costs 1,000 times more than an identical model.
Yet we are not always so discerning when we work on global problems.
Below is a chart using data from Disease Control Priorities in Developing Countries (second edition), showing the number of years of healthy life (measured using DALYs) you can save by donating $1,000 to a particular intervention to reduce the spread of HIV and AIDS. The chart shows figures for five different strategies.
If you're inspired to take action, there are several ways you can act now to:
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