Our video team’s short piece highlighting psychologist Paul Bloom’s argument against empathy (embedded above and previously discussed here) has continued to draw responses from around the Web. In a post on Medium, Joe Evans ties the video to philosopher Peter Singer’s two altruist character types:
The warm-glow altruist donates a small amount to a number of organisations with each act of charity providing a small rush, concluding that the donations are simply a self-congratulatory “buzz”, while the effective altruist analyses “what the world needs, how they could use their money to best end and how they could volunteer and act to make things better”. In the video, Bloom implies empathy as the cause of warm-glow altruism and the absence of it as the improvement in behaviour of the effective altruist.
Another public advocate of effective altruism is Rachel Elizabeth Maley, who writes in The Huffington Post:
The problem with warm glow giving is not an excess of empathy, but a lack of reason, and that is a very important distinction.