Big Questions

Big Questions

Scott Pickard / Top Tens / Questions


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?

Are our states and cities too big to fail?

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

When can America go back to work?

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?

War and Military

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?

Poverty and Income Inequality

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?

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?

Artificial Intelligence

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

Dystopian World

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?

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?

Rule of Law

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?

Matter, Energy, Universe

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?


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?