This article attempts to critique effective altruism as being insufficiently radical:
"As practiced by GiveWell, Singer-style philanthropy is palliative, an attempt to reduce suffering that leaves untouched the question of what generated the suffering in the first place, and what long-term solutions there might be to end its continual reproduction. It offers nets to help individual Africans avoid malaria while ignoring the structural, political, and economic reasons malaria is rampant."
The author goes on to recommend that we all instead fund leftwing social movements that fight against racism, capitalism, etc.
This all betrays an incredibly superficial understanding of what GiveWell is all about. GiveWell's fundamental commitment isn't to funding palliatives, or to ignoring social contexts, it is to empiricism. They would be more than happy to fund a long term solution to malaria if there was hard evidence that such a solution was cost effective.
How do I know this? Because GiveWell has explicitly evaluated similar eradication campaigns for polio and Guinea worms. (See http://www.givewell.org/international/technical/programs/disease-eradication
for details.) GiveWell is also perfectly willing to direct funding towards advocacy organizations; for example Deworm the World is a current top charity that lobbies governments to spend more on deworming.
Now, to be fair, you might argue that insisting on empirical evidence of effectiveness does bias GiveWell and the effective altruism movement in general towards low complexity interventions, and that low complexity interventions are unlikely to effect structural change. That would be an interesting argument, but it is not one that this article makes.
And please be aware of the counterargument: years of experience by GiveWell, Poverity Action Lab, and other researchers has established that even low complexity interventions are extremely hard to evaluate a priori. Knowing what problem an intervention is trying to address can give you an upper bound on its effectiveness, but that's about it. We should all be skeptical of all our intuitions, but especially our intuitions about (1) being able to identify root causes or (2) being able to predict what interventions will cost effectively address those root causes.
TL;DR: Article radically misunderstands what effective altruism is about by focusing on one of GiveWell's top rated charities, instead of the process by which that charity was found, or why indeed that empirical process is necessary to begin with.
Hat tip to +Lori Kenschaft