It’s easy to see that was wrong in hindsight.

But imagine he had managed to keep the ball rolling a few years/decades, producing billions for good causes in the meantime and promoting at the higher level. And that vanished little by little without much attention — yet another promise failing.

The main “victims” would have been a bunch of wealthy celebrities and investors (and yes, also tens of thousands of small customers; mostly relatively rich human beings living in wealthy countries). I can see how the positive impact could outweigh all those losses.

I’m not saying he did the right thing. (For one, we don’t know yet what he did, exactly. Of course, if rumours of funds being siphoned out of turn out to be true, and SBF and his circle are behind that, the guy is a monster.) I’m just saying we all face analogous (if also much lower-stake) trade-offs routinely, and we make decisions estimating odds and computing expected value (perhaps unconsciously) all the time.

@tripu I think you focus too much on #EffectiveAltruism there, leading you to hand wave the deeply unethical behavior of #SBF, misappropriating customer deposits on #FTX to bail out his failing #Alameda hedge fund.

And if only the story ended there. But #SBF was the second biggest donor to the Democratic party, and was pushing for regulations in the US to entrench #FTX monopoly. Textbook regulatory capture which would have been disastrous, I have no doubt about that.



I’m focusing on the reputation angle here because that’s the angle I care most about — more than the future of regulation, political corruption, or the specific shape of the fraud.

But those are very important too, no doubt.

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