Comment by stuart-anderson on Discussion about COVID-19 non-scientific origins considered harmful · 2020-04-06T02:59:17.351Z · score: 7 (3 votes) · LW · GW

People you neither like nor agree with must be allowed their voice. The answer to that isn't to try to silence them but to answer with your own speech. If something is wrong then it can be demonstrably proven so, if something is without evidence that can be highlighted, if the problem here is really the fear of war then that must be discussed clearly in daylight.

Speech isn't the problem, speech is the solution.

As for your main concern of nuclear war, it's unlikely but possible. That's probably bigger than all of us, in the same way that covid has been. If you cannot control something then you're not responsible for it either. You still have to live with it, and that's the part you need to focus on.

Comment by stuart-anderson on What will happen to supply chains in the era of COVID-19? · 2020-04-01T19:05:39.427Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

The UK had rationing, and the criminal corollary to that isn't looting it's the black market. Of which there was an awful lot of.

Criminals have their own social hierarchy, inclusive of their own conduct policing. If you transgress within criminal circles you are going to have a very bad time. Criminals are no different to other people when it comes to being susceptible to patriotism, etc.

Ignoring any moral factors, allowing your criminal subordinates to act contrary to war efforts and bring unnecessary scrutiny is going to be bad for business. It's also clearly a case that otherwise competing criminal enterprises would have an incentive to work together to ensure that nobody breaks the rules.

It is important to note that looting in a time of war is stealing from the government. They have both the authority and incentive to shoot you dead on sight for that.

The issue with free market supply now versus rationed supply in wartime is that they are two different supply chain structures. It takes time and effort to switch from one to another, and that's something that is often ignored because history is time compressed. You don't hear detailed real time accounts of people busting their asses to solve the million different problems involved in retooling their supply chains. The documentation of history is always a summary. Year long logistical nightmares get reduced to one or two paragraphs.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Openness Norms in AGI Development · 2020-03-31T07:55:51.857Z · score: -3 (4 votes) · LW · GW

I wanted to throw it out of a helicopter the second I read the title. This has to be the worst nomenclature possible.

The communist norm is a norm to share all ‘substantive findings’ with the scientific community.

AGI is a weapons technology where the payoff is winning the entire world. It doesn't matter how much researchers openly cooperate because there's a military/intelligence/covert incentive to both retain information and acquire it from other parties doing the same. Private researchers and research will be acquired via secondment on that basis also.

Even private researchers will only cooperate to the degree that it is in their self interest. For an individual or company even modest success has the potential to bring fame and fortune. Few people are altruistic enough to give that up.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Why do we have offices? · 2020-03-31T07:42:59.642Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

The office is a paradigm that is understood and established, remote work often isn't. It's not just about your own workers, you also have to interface with other industries.

If I am an employer then how to I find talent that understands or can learn a remote paradigm and works well within that? How do I train inexperienced staff into that paradigm? What are the common problems and common solutions for them?

How do you integrate remote workers with on site workers? This raises issues of communication, tracking work, people, assets, etc. The infrastructure required to serve desktops to people isn't cheap or pain free either.

What are the hidden costs of doing this? I had to have some remote workers 20 years ago and it came with problems that weren't present in the office. Nobody was 100% remote because it just wasn't possible at that point.

This is also the classic problem of the 'paperless office', which whilst easier to do today is still incredibly difficult to pull off. I don't know about other legislative domains, but here a copy of a document is only proof of its existence and not legally equivalent to the actual document itself. Lots of stuff *has* to be on paper for legal reasons. Plenty of original documents (especially financial records) have to be retained for years or even permanently.

What about confidentiality and chain of custody? I can put access control and surveillance in an office.

If I worked today and covid had happened then I would have set up an emergency NOC and moved into work. I wouldn't have been able to run the infrastructure and send everyone else home otherwise. It would have sucked. Plenty of staff wouldn't have been able to go home because their jobs weren't portable. Even if I could send people home I couldn't send infrastructure home. Half a million dollars of PBX and 500kg of battery backup wasn't going anywhere.

Comment by stuart-anderson on What will happen to supply chains in the era of COVID-19? · 2020-03-31T07:10:30.893Z · score: 6 (4 votes) · LW · GW

Re 1:

I am in Australia. We still have panic buying after weeks of this. Even with voluntary rationing by shops.

Prices have gone up, supply has gone down, and this is before we get to the supply losses from a lack of workers in the agricultural sector (imported labour that is unavailable).

Re 3:

Here, the economic situation is so bad that drivers will work. They are considered essential workers, so they have both work and job security (for now).

We've just dropped $200B into immediate bailouts(1) and that will only get us so far. The problem won't be labour availability, it will be bankruptcies eliminating jobs. Airlines, hospitality, food service, etc. are toast right now, and that's only the first wave of it. If you aren't in an essential sector then you're either out of a job or on track for that.

Re War time scenario:

As a counterpoint we are already seeing looting in Italy, and civil unrest elsewhere. There have been many examples of non-compliance with authorities, simple idiocy, and outright antisocial conduct. I don't think it is safe to hope for a British stiff upper lip here.

A group can only survive a given percentage of defection before altruism becomes a maladaptive strategy. If people don't have confidence that 'we are all in this together' then they'll act in their own interests first.

I think it is relevant to consider what makes a group a group. Does your nation or community have a strong unifying identity? Mine's has been so devalued and eroded that I don't have confidence that I can rely on others (ergo, I have low incentive to provide aid back). I don't have a good answer for that, other than to cover myself and mine.


1) This is in a country with a GDP of $1.3T in good economic times. We are screwed.

Comment by stuart-anderson on What will the economic effects of COVID-19 be? · 2020-03-28T22:53:49.208Z · score: -3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

You are correct in stating that nobody can predict the future, but as the entire thread is speculation I don't think that's as much of an issue here as suggested. This is nothing more than my guess, in a thread full of guesses.

A recession is going to happen because it is already happening. The global economy has been on a slide for a while now. Quantitative easing was already happening in a bunch of countries before covid turned up. Now we have mass unemployment, unprecedented financial measures like individual stimulus payments for entire populations, etc. that put us into uncharted, but grim, territory. Exchange rates and the stock market are both going bonkers. The tourism industry will collapse. Multiple airlines will collapse. I'm sure other industries are done for as well. Entire sectors collapsing is an economic disaster at the best of times, multiple sectors collapsing globally at once is going to be a mess.

Female employment is likely to go up for the same reasons it did in the Depression: women will settle for less money and put up with more bullshit than men will. When you're trying to run your business on the smell of an oily rag shaving even a tenth of a percent off operating costs could be the difference between staying open another day or not.

Employment as a whole will go down, but the gender balance will change.

Comment by stuart-anderson on What will the economic effects of COVID-19 be? · 2020-03-24T10:26:27.219Z · score: -1 (10 votes) · LW · GW

This is going to be the initiating event for a number of economic disasters.

We were headed for a big recession anyway, this has brought it forward and amplified the damage. It could easily become a full blown depression. Nothing good comes out of a depression.

How business gets done will have to alter radically. Everything will be geared around not being present or limiting the numbers there. This will obviously decimate certain industries.

There will be many business closures and increased unemployment. We are already seeing that happening and it's been all of five minutes. The longer those industries are shut down the higher the losses will be.

A few business sectors are recession proof, and some benefit from hard times. All forms of vice will benefit. Desperation will drop the bar for worker's scruples.

Female employment will go up, male employment will go down. Wages will plunge, conditions will plunge, and people will just be grateful to have a job.

Individual actors, businesses, governments, and unions will all take this opportunity to exploit strategic power shifts. Whilst this could be mostly economic the possibility of crime or war is not off the table. You only have to look at the US where some states have essentially declared a moratorium on policing anything but the most serious crime to see how this could play out at the individual level. War is a massive economic stimulus in itself (provided you win).

In the long term some people are going to win very big. The vast majority will lose. Some will lose so severely that they will never recover. The gap between the wealthy and the poor will expand and the middle class will contract further.

The only coordinated method of correction I can think of outside of war is massive infrastructure spending. Governments will have to drop insane amounts of money into employment creating ventures. Just giving cash to citizens or businesses won't be enough.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Should I buy a gun for home defense in response to COVID-19? · 2020-03-24T08:48:39.788Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

2 & 3: I was functioning off the assumption that if guns are trivially available then you can reasonably expect assailants to be armed with them. Ergo, you need to be able to match that force and/or mitigate it.

There's nothing inherently wrong with less lethal weaponry but there's obviously a force imbalance between them and guns (or even knives).

Comment by stuart-anderson on My Bet Log · 2020-03-23T07:54:38.483Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW
I consider this off-topic and I'd prefer it not to be discussed in this thread.

I've exercised my right of reply and I'm happy enough to leave it at that.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Should I buy a gun for home defense in response to COVID-19? · 2020-03-23T07:01:57.210Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Not American, so bear that in mind.

1. Does the lack of skill issue apply to shotguns?

2. If not a gun, then what alternatives to that?

3. With or without a gun, what's the viability of body armour?

Comment by stuart-anderson on Even if your Voice Shakes · 2020-03-20T10:07:16.271Z · score: -6 (3 votes) · LW · GW

As I never made that suggestion I fail to see how it applies.

Furthermore, I would argue that this community is not as homogeneous as you assume. That is a feature, not a bug, at least when it comes to the possibility of evolving your thinking.

OP worked basic retail. This was a starter job and everyone who has worked for more than five minutes has had one. Universal experiences exist. That's why narratives and archetypes work so well. Neither I nor you needed to be the one passing them the olives to understand exactly what happened here and why it turned out the way it did.

Comment by stuart-anderson on My Bet Log · 2020-03-20T09:24:47.685Z · score: 1 (3 votes) · LW · GW
YES on someone contracting Covid-19.

Is now a good time to point out that this bet can be thrown?

Hubei has had just over 0.1% of its population confirmed as having had the disease at one point, and Italy just over 0.05%.

When your first sample is from known liars and your second from people that fucked everything else up that doesn't inspire confidence. Covid stats have made me far more wary of the source of stats. Plenty of these numbers are obvious baloney.

Covid-19 seems to play very nicely into Trump's anti-immigrant, anti-globalist narrative.

Well, there's a very good reason for that, isn't there? Right now is a object lesson in why borders matter, both pragmatically and politically. Russia has basically no infections because it closed its borders, whilst the EU countries are drowning in disease for the opposite reason.

A global JIT supply chain based almost exclusively in China is an existential, financial, and strategic risk to pretty much the entire world right now. Business as usual is off the table for the foreseeable future.

Bringing back domestic production is a wise strategy here not just because of Chinese unreliability but because the global financial situation is dire. Being able to give your population a shitload of employment will likely benefit everyone. Nations are going to have to pull all sorts of financial shenanigans to avert a full blown meltdown, so ending up with tangible employment and manufacturing capabilities in exchange for that seems like a win.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Importing masks from China · 2020-03-19T07:10:19.780Z · score: 6 (4 votes) · LW · GW

By all means use the cheap Chinese crap vendors, but understand the limits of them. The first and largest in this instance is that shipping will be slow. It's nothing to wait 4-6 weeks for your stuff to turn up. Or go missing. Or arrive not being what you ordered. Or broken.

Understand that these are the outward facing English language sites for Chinese business. You pay a Westerner tax, and you are getting Chinese business standards. If you have access to someone that knows the language then you can use taobao instead, it's exactly the same market as aliexpress (and alibaba for that matter. Same ownership), just in Mandarin, and cheaper.

Nothing on these sites is of quality, and fakes are common. If you buy PPE off Chinese vendors then that's a gamble. For plenty of stuff the fact it's fake, a cheap copy, or just crappy in general isn't that much of an issue. If you wouldn't be prepared to buy it from a dollar store then don't buy it off Chinese web vendors. They're exactly the same thing.

I wouldn't buy PPE from aliexpress but I've bought hundreds of other things (sort by number of orders is your best friend on aliexpress. It forces the cheapest and most genuine vendors to the top of the results). As I said, understand where you are shopping and modulate your expectations accordingly.

Comment by stuart-anderson on How can we protect economies during massive public health crises? · 2020-03-19T04:12:38.598Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

The individual's ability to support themselves is a problem. The answer to that, both in personal or societal crisis in the short term is personal savings and stockpiling of emergency supplies. These are both measures that are currently elective and either ignored or scorned by the majority.

If you say to people "You need 3 months of wages in an emergency account" then most will baulk at that, cite financial incapacity, and go straight back to wasting their money on shit. If you talk about prepping, even right now in the middle of a pandemic, people treat you like you're literally insane. Clearly there are attitudinal issues that are discouraging prudent behaviour.

People's ability to work, shop, etc. remotely is clearly important here. If you can do what you need to do without stepping out of your house for a month then executing a full and compulsory quarantine becomes a non-issue.

Protocols for rationing clearly need to be put in place. Everyone has to be guaranteed a minimum survival ration, and if the state isn't prepared/or shouldn't (economic rationales) stockpile for that then they will have to ensure that private enterprise picks up the slack.

If an activity is critical and cannot be performed remotely then it must be segmented, physically and/or by labour force. Sites and shifts must limit or preclude interaction.

Another serious problem is supply lines and Just In Time business practices. Supply and JIT issues mean you either have to keep your borders open for goods, or you have to sit on a significant stockpile of them. Panic buying and JIT have caused utter chaos here.

At the level of government it has become starkly apparent that domestic manufacturing and stockpiling of essential supplies has been neglected. Chinese supply has been demonstrated to be both an economic and strategic risk. Every country will have to significantly diversity supply and to ensure domestic production and stockpiling after this.

I would argue that at the very least protocols and best practices are something that could be formulated for individuals, businesses, and government. It is clear that many have never considered this particular situation, and had no idea what to do, when to do it, etc. IME, when it comes to dealing with people being able to say "Do this" is superior for 80-90% of them in preference to expecting them to show any independent thought or initiative (even in a situation like this, which has the potential for ruin for themselves and their families on a number fronts. People just stand there like deer in the headlights).

Ultimately the solution here is inculcating personal responsibility and capability. The best armour against any crisis would be to inculcate a responsible and capable mindset in as many of the population as possible. Frankly, this entire situation is beginning to scream instructional game to me. Make a fun game and you won't need to coerce people into learning how to take prudent action off their own bat.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Even if your Voice Shakes · 2020-03-19T03:14:54.184Z · score: 1 (4 votes) · LW · GW

I would concur that personal motivation does matter, but that it doesn't protect one from consequences of action. Go ahead and do what you consider right, and then have the courage of your convictions.

We can debate personal ethics 'til the cows come home. One only need look to the Roma to see an entire culture that treats crime as laudable or to Islam to find murder of the out-group touted as the highest holy virtue to see examples of how variant ethics can be. My argument is that within our culture, particularly the work culture, is that breaking ranks is potentially an ethical misstep, and most certainly a pragmatic mistake.

Stealing and giving are exactly the same inasmuch as chocolate and mint are both flavours. Class and instance aren't equivalent. That all right thinking people find mint to be disgusting is irrelevant to the fact that they are both clearly flavours.

Comment by stuart-anderson on How useful are masks during an epidemic? · 2020-03-11T08:11:03.520Z · score: -1 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Can someone tell me how to DIY a full hood positive pressure respirator?

Comment by stuart-anderson on Even if your Voice Shakes · 2020-03-10T11:25:26.552Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW

The belief held doesn't matter, what matters is the authority to act on behalf of an entity. That's why these two situations are identical: both employees acting contrary to instruction for personal reasons in the assumption that they knew better than everyone else. This isn't about the conviction, it's about the act it caused.

Here's how I see things: The olive bar serves olives to the public. Olives generally come served in olive oil, and vinegar, both acids, both utterly hostile to all kinds of bugs. If the olive bar can stay open in a world with e.coli health regulations (ie. people literally having shit on their hands) and not be making people sick, then it can get by with covid-19 too. The company already has multiple members of staff devoted to both food and public safety, internal and external legal counsel, and CEO's and management that are on a first name basis with people in authority and have already had a dozen conversations specifically about covid-19 with various private and government parties. You do not end up running a big company by being a schmuck that cannot deal with complicated business risks. There's always at least one or two business killing grade problems at this level, covid-19 is just the latest one. If things go wrong here, it won't be OP in the firing line, it will be dozens of people way above OP's pay grade. This is not OP's responsibility, and them going off script just makes it that much harder for the people who are responsible here.

People are making a lot of assumptions here based solely on OP's viewpoint. I can tell you that from five minutes of considering this situation and from vocational experience and simple old age that there's more than one side to this. OP's heart is absolutely in the right place, their actions weren't. Likewise, there's at lot more that goes into the company's/managements motivations than simply the profit motive at all cost. That would be a naive interpretation.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Even if your Voice Shakes · 2020-03-08T18:16:39.768Z · score: 4 (5 votes) · LW · GW

This is a situation where you can (probably) have your cake and eat it to, it just depends on how you approach things. If you do it like they did then you get sacked and your ability to affect change in that situation ends then and there. So there's a discussion to be had in regards to ethics and pragmatism.

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. Somehow I get the feeling that her action inline with her personal convictions but in contravention to official policy and direct instruction wouldn't be so enthusiastically supported by those here, would it? So there's the idea of insubordination in support of personal conviction to be discussed here.

OP's actions had consequences for more than just them. That matters. OP acted without authority, and whenever authority is executed without corresponding responsibility it causes problems. OP got sacked, but their manager had to clean up the mess they made (see my other comment for that line of thought). Ethics are never one sided, and there's more to this than just the situation from OP's perspective.

I'm not here to tell anyone what ethics to hold, or when or how to execute them. Clearly OP is surprised how this played out, I'm not because I've seen it before, and if we can have a conversation about that then maybe they won't get sacked the next time this sort of thing inevitably comes up in their life.

It's trivial to sacrifice for your principles, OP did, and is regretting it as we speak. What's hard is living to your principles without screwing up your's or anyone else's life. Ethics always come with costs. That doesn't mean you give up on ethics, it just means you need to understand the nature of the transaction you are making with the world so you don't end up with regrets and minimise the damage.

OP's situation is done and dusted but there's ample scope for a post mortem and for a more abstract conversation about the nature of the ethics in the situation. I'm not aiming to dump shit on OP for their choices, I'm aiming to expand the conversation beyond what it is at present. OP got sacked for insubordination (which I agree with) and that conversation is more complicated than whether you agree with OP's intent or not (which I also agree with, if not the translation of that intent into action).

Comment by stuart-anderson on Even if your Voice Shakes · 2020-03-08T17:07:17.690Z · score: 12 (8 votes) · LW · GW
Did I actually do the right thing here? I honestly couldn’t tell you.

You did the right thing by your principles, that isn't up for debate. The real question here isn't that, it's how you'd do things differently if you could do it over. This won't be the last time you face this kind of dilemma in life, so the question isn't academic.

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.

You just sound young. Everyone makes these sort of mistakes as a product of lack of experience.

Everyone gets to make decisions that are costly. What ultimately matters is whether or not you regret a decision. You're going to cop negative outcomes from choices whether you like it or not, expected or not.

On a purely pragmatic front, you need an emergency fund. Principles or not, you can always lose a job or experience a financial setback. The more of a buffer you have the bigger the disaster you can tolerate.

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.

When I read your account of this my first thought was "you need to rethink your strategy in terms of goal rather than principle". You don't have to stop being principled, you just need to be *smarter* about how you fulfil your principles.

If the point is to reduce potential risk that is not the same goal as close the olive bar come hell or high water. When you consider the risk of eating food from these sort of communal dishes I'd imagine it's already high. You haven't panicked over e.coli or any of the other common filth that must be swimming around there, so my first question would be is this as much of a risk as it intuitively seems?

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.

Again, this is a matter of experience. Your situation was entirely predictable to someone that has seen it countless times. You'll see others performing variations of exactly what you have here, and getting the same result, thousands of times in your life. Insubordination resulting in dismissal is common.

To understand the situation better all you have to do is switch your viewpoint from yourself to that of your manager. From the manager's perspective you were just one of a hundred problems that day, a problem that you dealt with, that then came back to bite you on the ass because the easily replaceable worker wasn't doing what you told them to and had gone completely off the reservation.

I've had that problem with people I've worked with. I don't live in a country with easy dismissal, so most of the time it involved me scolding people and ordering them to stop dicking around and do what they were paid to do. If I were your manager I'd have said "We haven't received specific instructions yet, either from corporate or the health department, so for now nothing changes. If and when we do receive that instruction I will want you to be ready to implement it. Can I rely on you for that?". What I wouldn't be saying to you is what I was thinking, which is that it isn't going to be the olive bar that gets shut down, it's going to be the entire store, hopefully before people decide riots and looting is a good idea. And it's America, so of course guns, because as if things aren't hard enough already.

Not because of the consequences to myself, but because it didn’t end up working. ... If it had resulted in the olive bar being closed, I think I would have done it despite the consequences.

Now that you know how important the ends are to you, you'll consider the means more carefully in future. That is a valuable lesson to have learned.

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

1. That is a crime. Don't ever commit a crime in a vocational context. The company will pursue you over it to the bitter end. And you'll get a criminal record into the bargain.

2. Becoming a whistle-blower is about a thousand times worse than committing a crime is from the perspective of personal consequences. Snitches aren't popular with anyone, but when you snitch against people with money and power you are opening yourself up to entirely new levels of punishment.

3. Few would stick their neck out for you, especially if they've seen this kind of thing before. The employer always has the power in these situations barring clear infractions. Employers have no problem putting a head on the pike as an object lesson to the rest of the employees (I've done this myself. Not to the degree of firing people, but the principle is sound). Peer enforcement is more effective than hands on micromanagement.

To sum up, my take on this situation is that you need to learn when to discharge your own ethical responsibility. You going to your manager with your concerns should have been the end of your ethical burden here. You made him aware of the problem, he's the authority, so it's on his shoulders at that point. That is how a hierarchy is supposed to work, authority and responsibility are bound together. If you don't have the authority to choose to close the olive bar then you are also not responsible for anything that arises from failure to close it. Likewise, your choice to act outside your authority here has had consequences for your manager too. Ethical considerations are but one subjective concern. Your manager has had to clean up the mess of your actions and has to deal with all the crap attached with firing you into the bargain. Corporate doesn't give a fuck about the olive bar but I can guarantee they're pissed at the union involvement.

What happened has happened, and the only thing that matters at this point is to learn whatever can be learnt and move on. One of the most difficult lessons about ethics is that you have to accept that sometimes you can do nothing meaningful about an issue. There will certainly be occasions when it is worth it to dig in your heels, even when that's pragmatically counterproductive. There will be situations in your life when the only thing you can do is withdraw your consent whilst events proceed regardless. This wasn't one of those situations because you needed the job more than you needed to make an ethical stand.

None of this is the end of the world and it happens to everyone.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Even if your Voice Shakes · 2020-03-07T06:23:21.396Z · score: 1 (13 votes) · LW · GW

You made a decision you didn't have the authority to make, and exactly what you'd expect happened as a result.

What have you learned here? What do you still need to learn here?

Comment by stuart-anderson on What "Saving throws" does the world have against coronavirus? (And how plausible are they?) · 2020-03-05T02:52:18.699Z · score: 3 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Quarantine works. Depending on culture that's something that can be primarily self enforced.

My own country (Australia) has already had the government raising social protocols and quarantines as possible measures despite the low number of cases at present. There will certainly be idiots, but I'm pretty confident that if it comes down to it we have the cultural factors to comply with measures (the entire country routinely floods, burns, or is in drought. Catastrophe is something we have experience dealing with). That being said, expectation is the seed of disappointment.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Is there a better way to define groups for COVID-19 impact? · 2020-03-05T02:38:10.498Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

As a related question: How many patients and time passed do we need to be able to have statistics that we can reliably extrapolate from?

Or perhaps: What is the error rate for the statistics we have and the conclusions we make from those statistics?

Comment by stuart-anderson on Do 24-hour hand sanitizers actually work? · 2020-03-02T07:06:03.391Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Contact the manufacturer and ask for evidence of their claims. If they don't have any supporting studies then you can stop your bullshit investigations right there. When they hand you a single study they commissioned that gives them glowing praise you can stop your bullshit investigations. When they hand you ten studies by people that have nothing to do with them then you can start taking them a bit more seriously.

You can also just use something that works and doesn't have a fancy bottle and name and save yourself the trouble. Bleach and alcohol don't smell nice, but they're cheap, effective, and have a mountain of supporting literature.

Comment by stuart-anderson on What are the long-term outcomes of a catastrophic pandemic? · 2020-03-02T06:54:54.105Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW
  • Nationalism and a return to domestic production.
  • Increase in the speed of the rise in conservatism.
  • A bump in the birth rate. Not enough to matter, given the birth rate crisis.
  • Civil, military, and financial discord are all possible. Everyone's freaking out and there are an increasing number of power differentials and other options opening up. There'll be a mix of circling the wagons and people taking big risks to capitalise on discord.
  • Prepping suddenly won't seem so stupid after this. Want to make some money starting a business? Now you know where.
  • China is facing multiple internal and external threats, and a shaky economy. Expect Trump to turn the thumbscrews and make the most of that.
  • If the EU doesn't control its borders (something it doesn't want to do) then it is going to take a massive hit. It will be interesting to see what the NGO people smugglers will be directed to do by their owners when the shit hits the fan.
  • By the same token, it will be interesting to see what the UK will do at the Irish border.
Comment by stuart-anderson on How do you survive in the humanities? · 2020-02-28T04:10:17.549Z · score: 0 (3 votes) · LW · GW

I have an opinion, it comes with no warranty or guarantee of any kind, take it or leave it. I'm not speaking to satisfy anyone but myself.

Comment by stuart-anderson on At what point should CFAR stop holding workshops due to COVID-19? · 2020-02-28T03:49:14.226Z · score: 3 (3 votes) · LW · GW
COVID-19 isn't actually killing children at elevated rates, but that's really weird

An issue at present is that trustworthy data is only just being gathered now. China has cultural and funerary practices that complicate reporting, and it has outright lied about the situation for political reasons. Their data is next to worthless. There are other places that I would also happily put in the bullshit data bin too. Realistically, I think this is going to take a while to shake out.

What I'm seeing is the start of a panic, and that is entirely uncalled for.

When is a panic called for? :)

There's no point panicking but everyone should have plans in place and supplies in reserve in case something happens. I had a blackout a couple of weeks before all the pandemic talk and I've been buying a few things every week to make my life easier the next time it (or something else) happens.

BTW, thank you for being the only person so far to comment instead of just downvoting without adding to the discussion.

I've got no idea why you copped that shellacking. It seems unwarranted.

Comment by stuart-anderson on At what point should CFAR stop holding workshops due to COVID-19? · 2020-02-27T07:57:44.131Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

There's an argument to be had for untethering a whole bunch of activities from physical presence for reasons other than contagion.

I have no involvement with CFAR but the question I would ask is "Do the bodies really need to be in the same room for this to work?".

Comment by stuart-anderson on At what point should CFAR stop holding workshops due to COVID-19? · 2020-02-27T07:52:40.235Z · score: 4 (3 votes) · LW · GW

To be fair, most people alive in the West today have lived with sanitation and antibiotics. You can get away with not washing your hands in that environment. People do what works, not what they should.

As for the youth of group, that's fine for them, but do they know any children or elderly people they don't want to kill? Being a vector is a problem too. The less exposure you have to infection or to the vulnerable, the better.

Comment by stuart-anderson on How do you survive in the humanities? · 2020-02-27T06:36:09.437Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

OP is in a university setting. Have you been in one lately? They're shit shows when it comes to tolerating dissent.

Ignoring that, pissing people who are responsible for your future off is rarely smart. We've all had to bite our tongues and that's what OP has to do here to avoid censure. He's talking about arguing with the fundamental premises on which these lecturers base their careers. They have egos like everyone else does.

OP is going to get a lot further by saying "I found X really interesting in today's lecture. Could you recommend some readings on that?" than by putting up a fight against a group that is not open to discourse outside of their extremely narrow parameters.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Making Sense of Coronavirus Stats · 2020-02-27T05:50:40.685Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

A bad model that can be refined is better than no model, so point taken.

That being said, if China is on the one hand lying about this and on the other effectively implementing pest houses, martial law, and quarantining millions then I'd be inclined to ignore their words and look to their deeds to make a conclusion here.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Making Sense of Coronavirus Stats · 2020-02-20T21:21:54.006Z · score: 3 (4 votes) · LW · GW

Bad data equals incorrect answers.

China is lying about the statistics and everyone knows it. Their bad data makes any meaningful conclusions impossible.

Comment by stuart-anderson on How do you survive in the humanities? · 2020-02-20T21:18:43.258Z · score: 18 (11 votes) · LW · GW

How do you survive in a cult when you're not a cultist?

The problem is simple: you believe that the truth matters, postmodernist social marxists (if not outright marxists) don't. You're trying to get a group of fundamentalist non-theistic fanatics to question their ideology. Unsurprisingly, questioning here is the path to you being burnt at the stake. Questioning is *heresy*.

This is about self preservation. You want a diploma, and you're not going to get it unless you're willing to lie about your beliefs and say the things you're supposed to say. You want connections, that's a matter of understanding who people are, and what they believe (and by extension what you can say and be thought of believing by them). This is a situation where it is more important to be *smart* than to be *right*.

Stop talking and start listening and observing. What are the darlings of the lecturers doing and saying? You cannot do anything about intrinsic characteristics, and plenty of the ideology of the academy is outright bigoted, racist, sexist, etc. What you can change is your speech, your presentation, learn how to speak without saying *anything meaningful at all* (which is the essence of politics). What you need in a hostile environment that you cannot hope to dominate with force is *camouflage*. Learn to look like something you're not. Learn how to hide in plain sight.

Should I just shut up and focus on graduating?

If you cannot learn to modulate your responses, then the answer to that question is yes.

The better question in these situations is "Why am I here?". If picking fights with lecturers isn't inline with your overall long term goals then don't do it. Don't pick fights you can't win and that don't mean anything if you did.

You are only frustrated because you care and you believe that these nutcase's idiocy can be corrected with speech. I'm not going to say to not care, but I will say that how you care and what you care about is important in life in general. You don't have to give up your values, but you will have to adapt to many situations in your life where your values conflict with reality. This is one of them. You will not change them, you will only aggravate them should you directly confront them.

I can tell you as someone that is illogically committed to the truth (I think it is a side effect of my mental illness) that an unhealthy focus on it being voiced is a recipe for a miserable life. Everyone hates me, and I don't blame them for that. For whatever reason I have to put the truth in the room (ie. I don't care if you believe it, I believe it, and I'll damn well say as much) and people fucking hate it. In most situations the unvarnished truth is interpreted as aggression. Don't be me. I wouldn't be me if I had more control over myself.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Why do we refuse to take action claiming our impact would be too small? · 2020-02-15T21:23:21.565Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW
Most people who are concerned about CC don't want or need expert knowledge, they want politicians to listen to experts.

1. I don't support the idea that you just blindly hand your responsibility for understanding and resolving issues to anyone else, let alone the state.

Even if one is so lazy and foolish as to cede all authority to the state, then if one lives in a democracy one still has an onus to be informed simply to be able to vote inline with one's own values.

2. Politicians understand that gaining the vote of the electorate to gain personal power is their primary goal, and securing money from the elites from that power as the secondary. Notice that listening to experts and solving the actual problem isn't on that list anywhere.

Seriously, when was the last time the state got something done properly and on time? When was the last time you said "gee, I'm so thankful the government is in charge of this"? I'm not about to go full Ayn Rand here, but leaving CC up to the UN to solve seems like an obviously stupid act.

about 50 reactors under construction

This is quite literally *nothing* when compared to conventional or renewable deployments.

Your own quote shows the scale required simply to keep up - 450 reactors supplying 10% of today's load. So napkin math means we need 4500 of them to do all of it (which, of course, only accounts for electrical usage, not fuel usage). See how important understanding exactly how big of a problem scale is as a factor here?

Comment by stuart-anderson on Why do we refuse to take action claiming our impact would be too small? · 2020-02-12T13:44:52.602Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW
There are good reasons for thinking nuclear power is part of the solution, in the short to medium term, but it's a major exaggeration to call it the only solution.

Part is true, unfortunately it is the part that we literally cannot replace with anything else at present.

Most people have zero idea of the scale of the problem here. How do planes fly? Cargo ships power themselves? What are roads and buildings made from? How do we turn buried bauxite into plastic coated metal sheets on a cardboard roll for wrapping your leftovers? The point is that the energy usage of the world is enormous. So many factories have dedicated train lines for bringing in coal or other fuels that you can literally browse google maps and trivially find them.

We are never going to be able to keep a kilometre of aluminium molten 24/7/365 on a production line with renewables. That's just one smelter, now times that by literally millions of other industrial facilities worldwide.

Every man and his dog is pro environment and keen on dealing with CC. How many of them have cars, and what do they think makes cars run? How many of them have been on a plane, and what do they think planes need to fly? People can't even be bothered to look around themselves at everything they have and use and recognise that it all is so heavily entrenched in fossil fuels that life as they know it would be impossible with even so much as a 10% reduction in worldwide fossil fuel usage. Imagine what life would look like if we dropped fossil fuels to less than 10% (which is probably the sort of numbers we need)?

Nuclear is the only technology that exists today that could even remotely address the requirements (and even then it would require an enormous retooling of energy infrastructure to do the job. This is only a drop in replacement for certain domains, others, particularly fuels, aren't a solved problem yet). There's a lot of promise in fusion research and battery technology but until we have that in a production ready state we cannot assume it will save us here. How long do we wait before we act here?

not every CC proponent is anti nuclear.

Enough ordinary people are against nuclear to make it impossible to implement. I have accepted that, but I reserve the right to be bitter about it. If I had a time machine I wouldn't go back and kill Hitler, I'd find the rotten greenies that politically poisoned nuclear power off the back of lies and put bullets in them.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Why do we refuse to take action claiming our impact would be too small? · 2020-02-11T13:40:00.912Z · score: 5 (12 votes) · LW · GW

Every time I have a discussion about CC I always state that the only extant solution to the problem is nuclear power. That results in me being immediately shut down for heresy.

That's why I don't give a shit about complying with the environmentalist neo-animists performative and supposedly beneficial actions. They're literally fundamentalist cultists that believe superstition is action. They might as well be praying to a tree for salvation at this point.

If there's a problem then I have no issue with implementing the solution. If there is no solution or the solution proposed is bullshit and is being pushed by idiots and grifters (Greta Thunberg, anyone?) then I'm not doing it.

Get back to me when you change your mind on nuclear power, or when you have a working fusion reactor. Otherwise I'm not going to waste my time entertaining your idiocy. I'm not ceding my authority to act to others, I'm conserving my time and effort to act with effect.

Comment by stuart-anderson on What are beliefs you wouldn't want (or would feel apprehensive about being) public if you had (or have) them? · 2020-02-11T13:27:17.176Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Maybe because I've had this conversation a thousand times before and I'm just not interested in the death by a thousand cuts.

Neither of us are of the belief that the other is arguing in good faith, and no progress will be made.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Moral public goods · 2020-02-11T13:18:40.578Z · score: 10 (2 votes) · LW · GW
You have stepped back from the claim that ethical action always benefits the individual to the more obvious claim that they sometimes do.

Tangible benefits observable externally and those that are part of the subjective experience of the individual are benefits. If I feel validated that's a benefit, isn't it?

That you don't value my internal state makes no difference to it being of benefit to me.

Who was making it.?

You claimed that people are forced to do certain things. That's patently untrue. People choose. Lots of people like to choose self interest and then claim they had no choice at all. You could be one of those people, I don't know you well enough to know.

Redistribution can be justified by social stability (bribing the poor not to overthrow the rich), political stability (bribing the poor not to embrace socialism) investment in human capital, etc.

Which instantly changes the problem domain from equality to social outcomes. If you're trying to achieve social outcomes then just throwing money at individuals may not be the best way of getting that. Actually explicitly enumerating your goals matters a lot if you want to succeed at them.

So? Do you have an actual argument?

Communism is bullshit. It never works. Good enough for you to work with?

Redistribution in peaceful societies just isn't the same thing as revolution.

Show me a single society where nobody ever refuses to pay, and they are never subjected to force to remedy that. The illusion of peace is exactly that, and people pay because that is easier than saying no and being shot.

Theres plenty of proof that it fixes things. But maybe not things you care about.

Open your wallet and give me half of what's in it because you have more than I do. We can have the state do the same at gunpoint if that makes you feel better about it. Or do you not care about the wonders of redistribution?

If we are both forced to give some for the benefit of all then I can live with that. It's called tax. If I am to rob you by taking from your wallet because you have more than me (and no other reason), I don't support that at all. It isn't fair, it isn't sustainable, and it won't work. Assuming you don't flee or are bled dry you'll simply learn that there's no gain for you to work harder than anyone else. Everyone loses under this system.

Comment by stuart-anderson on What are beliefs you wouldn't want (or would feel apprehensive about being) public if you had (or have) them? · 2020-02-07T07:28:05.193Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

What we do and what we should do are two different things. If we are basing our policy on statistical outcomes then obviously we're going to have to identify variables and then manipulate them. Custody is but one variable.

I think it is reasonable to argue that the direction that Western society is taking in regards to reproduction and child rearing is failing us. The logical response to that isn't one course of action, it's experimenting with every single course of action we can think of and then measuring the outcomes. It is human to want one right answer, one single policy. That is unlikely to be optimal.

My own stance is that the sooner we get artificial gestation the better. If people aren't going to stay together, and are generally less fecund than we require to sustain our populations, then turning reproduction into an industrial process (with all the optimisations such a course would open to us) seems prudent. That is going to result in all sorts of new kinds of child rearing which can then be assessed against what we currently have. I believe that the village is the optimal child rearing unit and that would fit in nicely with manufactured offspring (because you can manufacture a village too).

Comment by stuart-anderson on What are beliefs you wouldn't want (or would feel apprehensive about being) public if you had (or have) them? · 2020-02-07T07:11:08.568Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Not all studies and populations are American, so I'd start with that. There are plenty of black people in Africa for a like for like comparison. There are also some very white areas in Europe, and the whole of Asia is Asian, of course. If one wishes to confine oneself to America there are plenty of ethnic enclaves one can study - Native reservations, religious communities, etc. People self segregate all the time.

If we are going to walk down the path of race and intelligence (which I'm not opposed to, but I don't think we can ignore that it is a minefield) then it's not difficult to do so. You've already answered your own question: it's primarily genetic and we have the twin studies to prove it. That's an answer that everyone hates, but it is what it is.

Cutting black people in and out of statistics for political and ideological reasons happens constantly. You can get the sort of statistics you're talking about from places like the CDC. Anywhere that does actual epidemiological work will have those raw figures (and to be fair, it's a goddamn sufferance to have to dig through tables that have been hidden to cover up inconvenient class disparities). Whilst the public might hate these things actuaries and bureaucrats have no such qualms. When a government has to pay welfare to single mothers and plan to build prisons for their offspring I can guarantee that they have statistics for them that would tell you everything you wanted to know and more. A FOI would give you that data if you want it that badly.

The short version here is that being black makes everything worse for primarily genetic reasons. I don't think that's something that is a particularly shocking statement, but as I said, people get upset. The black population in America is about 18%, and whilst they're terrible they're not terrible enough at that rate to throw all the stats about single mothers out the window. Black failure is a wholly different topic to the general failure of single mothers.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Moral public goods · 2020-02-07T06:39:02.001Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW
If one personally gets a return , then it's not altruism. The return is to the group.

If your group benefits, you are likely to benefit too. Prosocial actions might not benefit an individual directly and immediately, but it benefits them nonetheless.

For altruism to have evolved it merely needs to be more favourable to the survival of the genes than pure self interest would have been.

There's no personal benefit to you doing most of the things you are ethically required to do.

I am required to do nothing. I choose to do as I do for reasons of ethics, pragmatism, whim, etc. The argument that choice doesn't exist because someone is afraid of consequences is bunk.

We both know that unethical acts can result in profit. That's the entire reason that people choose to act unethically. If I steal something and get away with it then I am enriched, if I don't get away with it then I am punished. The ethics come before the choice, the consequences after.

At the most core level the benefit to me for my ethics is intrinsic consistency. When I do the 'right' thing I feel affirmed, when I do the 'wrong' thing I feel lessened. That alone is sufficient reason for my ethics. That is benefit and cost, immeasurable and non-existent to the external observer.

You are assuming that the only possible purpose of redistribution is to bring about an equilibrium of complete equality. That is not the case. There are multiple justifcations for redistribution.

I am assuming that if one is going to shake the gameboard up there has to be a point to that, and that point must be demonstrably beneficial and ethical.

If equality cannot be achieved, then what are we trying to do, and why? If equality isn't the variable or metric that matters here, then why are we focusing on it? The GINI coefficient has nothing to do with actual standards of living, and if you look at life in the West it's pretty damn good. Yet people will always want more. If you have what you need then why do you always want more? Do you really think that following in the failed footsteps of every single violent revolution to 'redistribute' is going to address avarice?

This problem is more complicated than taking from some and giving to others.

Whom are you arguing against?

People that want to steal the fruits of the labour of others without any proof that would actually fix anything.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Moral public goods · 2020-02-07T06:03:15.776Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

There are many things we do and value at the level of the group that are most certainly not pragmatic.

A person can act inline with their personal ethics without reference to the group's goals. Many of my own values will never be adopted by, or arguably are in the interests of, the group. I am a self admitted extremist and I'd never expect people to adopt my views, by the same token my views have cost me dearly (and God knows why I can't just let it go. My life would be better if I could).

A self interested person that is also a pragmatist pays their taxes. The long game always wins out over the short game. The person that thinks of long term goals doesn't end up in a shoot out at Waco.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Moral public goods · 2020-01-27T03:43:15.008Z · score: -4 (3 votes) · LW · GW
Using coercive force to fund public goods is also 'theft', but still it can end up with near-unanimous support. So I don't think that this is a good argument in and of itself.

Does might make right?

We know the tragedy of the commons exists, so pragmatically we tax. We know that the wealthy, from whom the majority of taxation comes (directly and indirectly) can up and leave at any point, so we pragmatically choose to offer them a good deal not to.

There's little in the way of ethics here, it's just individuals making pragmatic decisions to make their own lives easier.

This post isn't really about leveling the playing field.

Not entirely, but it's there. Why even raise classes with disparate wealth and opinions on self interest in the first place otherwise? Why raise 'redistribution'?

Comment by stuart-anderson on What are beliefs you wouldn't want (or would feel apprehensive about being) public if you had (or have) them? · 2020-01-27T02:44:16.619Z · score: 0 (2 votes) · LW · GW

There's mountains of research out there on every single outcome metric you can name. Pick one and then google. I'd suggest things that we know to have a high cost to the individual and to the community at large: criminality, poverty, health, mental health, homelessness, poor educational outcomes, etc.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Moral public goods · 2020-01-26T11:55:47.252Z · score: 0 (8 votes) · LW · GW

Altruism is to favour sacrifice to one's group for benefit in return. There is no benefit to me starving for people that aren't in my group. Especially not if they are potential competitors or openly hostile. Even OP draws an *us and them* on financial lines here.

If you believe that you cannot make people offer aid to the other then fine. All you have to do is attack the boundary between *us* and *them*. When it's just *us* then people will aid their own group just fine. There are obviously going to be limits to that, some differences are irreconcilable.

'Redistribution' (ie. theft) is an exercise in pointlessness. As long as there is scarcity there will be haves and have nots, and wealth will accumulate as a natural function of time and successful strategies. You can reset the game board as often as you like but you can never ensure a permanent and even stalemate. Even assuming you could destroy the entire point of competing, well then you've destroyed everything you get from that too.

We are already achieving record rates of getting people out of poverty, not with handouts, but with capitalism. There's no problem to fix here but the ingratitude and avarice of some.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Disasters · 2020-01-22T03:20:53.919Z · score: -5 (2 votes) · LW · GW

I live in Australia. The entire country burns, floods, or is in drought pretty much constantly. We do government disaster response very well. There are also significant cultural factors that aid in dealing with disasters.

I'm not against prepping, but I think it is less about disasters and more about dealing with day to day events. If you do enough to not be caught short then you're probably going to be fine.

Comment by stuart-anderson on Disasters · 2020-01-22T03:09:28.088Z · score: -2 (3 votes) · LW · GW

I'll be knocking on the neighbour's door to drink out of their swimming pool. I can't speak for anywhere else, but there's more than enough water for more than 2 weeks.

I have some food, but I could go without food for two weeks. Most people could, even if they were unhappy about it. The bigger problem with food is that if power goes out then so does refrigeration, so you're going to be stuck cooking and/or eating a lot of food quickly. People aren't used to how quickly food spoils because they're used to refrigeration and other modern preservation techniques.

Comment by stuart-anderson on What are beliefs you wouldn't want (or would feel apprehensive about being) public if you had (or have) them? · 2020-01-16T16:25:47.400Z · score: 3 (8 votes) · LW · GW

I have no such qualms, so I'll do it.

Single mothers are a disaster area. They make their children's lives objectively worse on every single metric we can measure.

We overwhelmingly give custody of children to the statistically worse parent *in spite* of the child's well being because society cares more about women than it does children (or anyone or anything else, for that matter).

Finding someone to criticise fathers and absent fathers is easy, finding anyone to call out single mothers and their deleterious influence is impossible. We hear non-stop about toxic masculinity, the patriarchy, and generally how men are the worst of the worst, but nothing is said about the single mothers at home, and the majority female teaching environment, raising children and creating the dismal outcomes they do.

When your performance in a task is directly correlated to the presence or absence of another, what does that say about your value in that task?

Comment by stuart-anderson on Vaccine... Help? Deprogramming? Something? · 2019-12-28T03:36:12.091Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

Cars are unsafe. They maim and kill a non-trivial number of people every single year. Is that sufficient reason to avoid cars?

Safety and utility are always a trade off. The problem when it comes to vaccines is that people are so coddled by a life without disease and death that they don't understand the utility they're gaining from vaccination. To them, nothing is happening (which isn't untrue, as vaccination is preventing the abnormal state that is disease) and thus vaccination feels correlated with other unrelated events (like autism diagnosis). Human minds are tuned to find meaning (arguably all minds are, if Skinner boxes are any indication) and will substitute bullshit and superstition if none is found.

If there is to be any remedy for your relative's position, I'd imagine it would be found in talking to people with direct experience of preventable diseases. Life without vaccination and antibiotics is within living memory and you need only go to a nursing home to get it. Direct experience of polio can be had in the general population. If you want to know what life was like when people just got sick and either just promptly died, or spent a lifetime with disability as a result, then just ask the people that saw it, or it happened to.

Nothing is perfectly safe, vaccines included. However, the alternatives to vaccines are well known and infinitely worse than anything that vaccines can do. Even if a few people die or get side effects that still a better deal than everyone having to have 5-6 children per family just to make up for increased infant mortality from epidemics.

Comment by stuart-anderson on How To Change a Dance · 2019-12-08T05:43:36.757Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

If this is a post about strategy then strategy can be discussed. It's not a vanity post from my perspective, but even if it is I'm not married to authorial intent.

As for any group being too small to infiltrate for gain, that hasn't been my experience. It only takes 3 members for entryism to occur, as only one needs to defect from the established order. You see this in cases of adultery within a social group all the time. Lots of people lose their partner and their 'best friend' at the same time.

Comment by stuart-anderson on How To Change a Dance · 2019-12-02T11:42:34.619Z · score: 1 (1 votes) · LW · GW

As you point out, whether something is entryism or politicking isn't particularly clear. I look at what OP has written - that they had a popular vote go against them, that they refuse to accept that, that they want to increase their level of authority by bad faith action, that they're coordinating an agenda with allied individuals, etc. - as indicators that OP is new to the group. This is conduct that is essentially antisocial within a group, and the antisocial get weeded out over time.

As to OP's agenda being relevant to the group, the no vote and OP's reaction to it suggests otherwise. I also seriously doubt that OP just one day decided to be an identity politics activist out of the blue. This ideology is basically a non-theistic religion and is pushed with all the zeal you'd expect from any bible thumper. That being said, people have a right to their beliefs, and if those around OP choose to associate with OP whilst OP acts on those beliefs then there (probably) isn't a problem here. Quibbling about bathrooms and wording at a dance isn't really that big of a deal in the scheme of things.

All that being said, I don't know OP, I don't know the situation, and it's none of my business.