Big Questions

Big Questions

Scott Pickard / Top Tens / Questions

Dystrumpia Rising

Is Fascism sneaking up on us one tweet at a time?

So white nationalists, if you overthrow the federal government, what do you put in its place?

If President Trump becomes incapable of handing his duties as President and Commander in Chief, who’s in charge?

Are the Proud Boys Trump’s Brownshirts?

Are the Joint Chiefs of Staff going to stand up and insure to the American people that there will be a peaceful transition of power to the rightly-elected 2020 presidential candidate?

Are the thieves of the world uniting? Why would they?

Is the threat of extremism rising in the United States, and is the White House listening?

Is Trump the Chosen One?

Can you believe what you read, see, and hear?

Do you have to approve of the character of a leader, artist, and athlete, to support and accept the product of their talent?

Is Russian democracy a farce?

What can a civil society do to fight the racism and injustice of Dystrumpia?

Why have Republican leaders abandoned their principles in support of an immoral and dangerous president?

Why would you support a religious community that constantly tries to deride and diminish your humanity?

Are science fiction’s themes of a Dystopian Society disturbingly visible in today’s world?

Sports

What does sport teach us about leadership?

What is a hero?

Is the purity of sports being poisoned by

  • technology (AI, surveillance, wireless)
  • the values/corruption in our increasingly uncivil society, and
  • gambling and corruption?

Racism, Prejudice, Poverty and Income Inequality

Can we transform our “I” society back to a “We” society united by a more civil, egalitarian, and generous spirit?

Does busing work as a school desegregation strategy?

Has the pandemic delayed if not killed the American Dream?

For over 400 years, why have white Christians and the Church not stood up against genocide of indigenous peoples, slavery, and racism?

How do we battle racism without harming or killing peaceful and innocent protesters, and, well-meaning police trying to keep the peace?

Should CEOs (the 1%) earn more than 1,000 times the median salary of their employees?

What happens when you give basic income to the poor?

Is racism predominantly instinctive (nature) or learned (nuture)?

Does the Canadian healthcare model give us a feasible and sustainable road map to medicare for all?

Is rural resentment of liberal elites dividing America against itself?

Should the mega-wealthy commit to reducing the destructive effects of economic inequality?

Politics & Rule of Law

How do we insure that our political system elects a president that serves the majority of American citizens, and not just half?

Has Donald Trump replaced Joe McCarthy as the most dangerous demagogue in American history?

I have a question for Attorney General William Barr: Are you, your family, friends, neighbors, colleagues and American citizens in general, part of “the mob“? If not, who decides who is in the mob and on what basis? You and you alone? Could we chat about this over a cup of coffee?

Is white collar crime is far more dangerous than violent street crime?

Is defunding police a cost-effective, feasible alternative to reforming within the existing policing system and culture?

How do we balance “self-defense vs. nonviolence, black power vs. civil rights” to achieve justice and equality for all Americans in a peaceful and secure way?

Is there a pattern of un-justice at the Justice Department these days, where criminal judgments always tilt in favor of political allies?

Artificial Intelligence

In an ai world, where will all the workers go?

What are the long-term social implications of Artificial Intelligence?

Coronavirus

Will we ever trust crowds again?

What could go wrong with self-spreading vaccines?

Has Trump’s misleading lies about the coronavirus resulted in reckless homicide?

Who will get the vaccine and in what order?

What wasn’t the U.S. prepared? Why did world leaders fail to work together to prevent the spread of Covid-19?

Is American Exceptionalism working against us in these times?

What will be the long-term socio-economic impacts from the 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic?

When can America go back to work and school?

Are we ready for medical rationing and its unintended consequences?

After decades of decreased funding and demonization of the federal bureaucracy, has the coronavirus crisis exposed the tragic ineffectiveness of federal leadership at a most critical moment when we need it?

Religion

If an alien was sent to explore earth, what religion would the alien choose?

War and Military

How many nuclear warheads exist in the world?

What everyday horrors of our world will our descendants look back on with disgust?

As the decades pass by and our memories fade, if we cannot remember the past are we condemned to repeat it?

Has the disruption of the military by COVID-19 pushed the military towards more autonomous force projection across all of its strategic platforms? Are machines now more reliable then humans?

Does the U.S. need such a large and expensive military?

Matter, Energy, Universe

How do we have a civil and productive discussion with the anti-science community that brings us closer together?

What is the lowest level machine code for how our universe works? (Wolfram)

Is renewable energy essentially a shill for the fossil fuel, mining, and heavy industries?

Existential Risks

Is protecting humanity’s future from existential risks the central challenge of our time? If so, what good do warships, warplanes, 14,000+ nuclear bombs, space force, infantry, commando teams, tanks, and aircraft carriers accomplish against

  • lethal pandemics
  • rising tides
  • burning forests
  • poverty and income inequality, and
  • animal, insect and plant extinction?

How are we destroying the planet? How will we save it?

What are the biggest long-term risks to the global economy?

Virtual Reality

When it comes to Virtual Reality’s impact on kids, how long is too long? How young is too young?

Are kids now officially citizens of a dual world, real and virtual?

Has this forced online family distance-learning experience during the self-quarantining COVID-19 crisis confirmed the importance of brick-and-mortar schools for kids?

But at the same time has the social, emotional, and intellectual value of online games been confirmed during this period of virus isolation?