(A long retort to Eliezer’s post Against Discount Rates.) Imagine you are a multi-billionaire who, to benefit mankind, will construct an asteroid deflector. Since your budget is limited, the deflector cannot be perfect. And trying to deflect an asteroid heading toward one place may mean increasing the risk it will hit somewhere else. So you must decide how much protection to offer different parts of the globe. Let us assume that your protection can be described by a single parameter P at each place X — roughly how much you have reduced the probability that an impact there will cause a physical effect (e.g. temperature) there above a certain threshold.

## For Discount Rates

## For Discount Rates

## For Discount Rates

(A long retort to Eliezer’s post Against Discount Rates.) Imagine you are a multi-billionaire who, to benefit mankind, will construct an asteroid deflector. Since your budget is limited, the deflector cannot be perfect. And trying to deflect an asteroid heading toward one place may mean increasing the risk it will hit somewhere else. So you must decide how much protection to offer different parts of the globe. Let us assume that your protection can be described by a single parameter P at each place X — roughly how much you have reduced the probability that an impact there will cause a physical effect (e.g. temperature) there above a certain threshold.

## Comments on this post are for paid subscribers

Sign in