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Michelle Hutchinson

Call for Registration – GOOD DONE RIGHT: a Conference on Effective Altruism

7-9 July 2014, All Souls College, Oxford Speakers include: Derek Parfit (Oxford), Thomas Pogge (Yale), Rachel Glennerster (MIT Poverty Action Lab), Nick Bostrom (Oxford), Norman Daniels (Harvard), Toby Ord (Oxford), William MacAskill (Cambridge), Jeremy Lauer (WHO), Larissa MacFarquhar (the New Yorker), Nick Beckstead (Oxford), Owen Cotton-Barratt (Oxford). For further information and registration, please visit Effective… Read More »Call for Registration – GOOD DONE RIGHT: a Conference on Effective Altruism

The Immorality of the News

People tend to worry a great deal about censorship of the press, and to talk about the obligation governments and others are under to allow the press the freedom it needs to report accurately. But maybe we should worry more about what the press itself chooses to leave out, and think about its reporting obligations.Read More »The Immorality of the News

Why Pro-Life Counsellors Ought to Lie

Those who are pro-choice often get frustrated by anti-abortion advocates, who are seen as using underhanded and immoral tactics to decrease numbers of abortions. These include presenting misleading information about abortions at their advice centres.
For example, it is claimed that some abortion counsellors show pictures of late-stage abortions when discussing early-stage abortions, exaggerate the trauma felt by people who have had abortions and assert that foetuses feel pain earlier than scientists believe they do. A large part of the opposition to the amendment proposed by Nadine Dorries , which would have prevented bodies which carry out abortions from counselling women, was that this might mean that more women would be counselled by anti-abortion groups who cannot be trusted to provide accurate information about abortion. I’m going to suggest that it is a mistake to think that anti-abortion advisors are failing morally by providing misleading information about abortions. Indeed, they might be failing morally if they did not do so.Read More »Why Pro-Life Counsellors Ought to Lie

Artificial meat – the best idea you’ve heard all year!

Last week scientists from Oxford and Amsterdam announced the results of an investigation into the environmental impact of growing meat artificially in labs rather than keeping livestock. They found that greenhouse gases would be reduced by up to 96%. In addition, cultured meat production would only require 1% of the land and 4% of the water that conventional meat does. They estimated that if more resources were put into the research, it would take about five years to produce artificial meat with the consistency of mincemeat, and another five years to produce steaks. Their conclusion is modest: “We are not saying that we could, or would necessarily want to, replace conventional meat with its cultured counterpart right now.”  This modesty is misplaced – it should be considered not just desirable, but hugely important to replace conventional with artificial meat.Read More »Artificial meat – the best idea you’ve heard all year!