View Poll Results: Which of these would do the most good for the world?

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  • Providing everyone in the world with access to clean water

    8 10.13%
  • Providing everyone in the world with enough nutritious food

    4 5.06%
  • Providing everyone in the world with free, high-quality K-12 education

    6 7.59%
  • Providing everyone in the world with access to Western-quality health care

    1 1.27%
  • Providing everyone in the world with access to information and communication (e.g. the internet)

    0 0%
  • Bringing peace, stability, and safety to every part of the world

    18 22.78%
  • Bringing democracy and freedom to every part of the world

    3 3.80%
  • Developing a clean, cheap source of energy that could be produced and distributed anywhere

    12 15.19%
  • Developing an effective, efficient transportation infrastructure in all parts of the world

    0 0%
  • Other (please describe)

    27 34.18%
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Thread: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

  1. #21
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    Re: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    What, in your opinion, is the biggest problem facing humanity? Suppose that you had one wish, which you had to use altruistically to make the world a better place. Which do you think would do the most "good" (however you want to define that), and why?

    - Providing everyone in the world with access to clean water
    - Providing everyone in the world with enough nutritious food
    - Providing everyone in the world with free, high-quality K-12 education
    - Providing everyone in the world with access to Western-quality health care
    - Providing everyone in the world with access to information and communication (e.g. the internet)
    - Bringing peace, stability, and safety to every part of the world
    - Bringing democracy and freedom to every part of the world
    - Developing a 100% clean, very cheap source of energy that could be produced and distributed anywhere in the world
    - Developing an effective, efficient transportation infrastructure in all parts of the world
    - Other
    Stupidity

    char/10
    “The people do no want virtue; but they are the dupes of pretended patriots” : Elbridge Gerry of Mass; Constitutional Convention 1787

  2. #22
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    Re: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    I disagree. I think that peace, stability, democracy, freedom, etc are the RESULT of having the material items, rather than the cause of them. Granted, having stability and freedom makes it a lot easier to produce the other items...but I think the causal link is much stronger in the opposite direction. There are far more unstable/unfree societies that can nevertheless provide people with a minimal standard of living, than there are societies in dire poverty which are nevertheless able to maintain stability and freedom (India and Ghana are the only two that come to mind).

    I think that's why when we ask questions like "How can we achieve peace in Country X?", at the root level it always comes down to something like a lack of education, lack of communication, or a resource struggle. Instability and authoritarianism are largely problems of poverty, and eliminating the root sources of poverty is usually the best way to promote lasting peace and democracy. To put it succinctly, I think that getting people access to water will eliminate conflict, more than eliminating conflict will get people access to water.

    Personally I think water, food, and energy are the most important items on my list, because they provide the building blocks from which the others can form. Whereas getting an education is difficult/ineffective without water and food, getting water and food are still worthwhile even without an education. So I think they are the most important. Ultimately, I think clean water is a bit more important than food, for the simple reason that 50% of the global disease burden is caused by unclean water consumption.
    Except it isn't possible to get water/food to the people who need it in areas that are wracking by instability, war, and tyranny. Governments take the resources, and distribute them amongst themselves. In effect, such donations are to the despots, soldiers, rebels and those who have kept food/water from the populace in the first place.

  3. #23
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    Re: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

    Quote Originally Posted by ThePlayDrive View Post
    Education because through education, all problems can be solved.
    It's difficult to educate those who are being persecuted through tyranny, wars, famine, contaminated water, etc. You cannot educate the starving, the dying, the oppressed.

    Until people are safe, in a peaceful, stable environment, education is simply not possible.

  4. #24
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    Re: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

    Quote Originally Posted by jet57 View Post
    Stupidity
    That's probably the biggest problem. There is nothing in the world that cannot be accomplished by eliminating human stupidity.
    There is nothing demonstrably true that religion can provide the world that cannot be achieved more rationally through entirely secular means.

    Blog me! YouTube me! VidMe me!

  5. #25
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    Re: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

    Quote Originally Posted by DiAnna View Post
    Except it isn't possible to get water/food to the people who need it in areas that are wracking by instability, war, and tyranny. Governments take the resources, and distribute them amongst themselves. In effect, such donations are to the despots, soldiers, rebels and those who have kept food/water from the populace in the first place.
    But the reason corrupt governments even worry about stealing water/food is because it's in such short supply. In this country, it doesn't even cross our minds that the government would steal our drinking water, because water is so abundant it's virtually free, so there wouldn't be any need to steal it.

    Just like with democracy, I think the causal link between water and stability is far stronger in the opposite direction. Lack of clean water is frequently a CAUSE of conflict, whereas conflict itself is rarely the primary cause of lack of clean water (although it can certainly exacerbate the problem). IMO, providing people with clean water is the most important because it addresses the root cause of many of the other things: For example, 50% of the global disease burden is caused by lack of clean water; poverty and lack of education are often caused by people having to spend the majority of their day gathering water from miles away; conflicts are often fueled by water shortages (e.g. Israel/Palestine, Sudan/Chad, Somalia, Pakistan), etc.
    Last edited by Kandahar; 04-22-12 at 05:54 PM.
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  6. #26
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    Re: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

    Economic freedom is more important because most/all those other things will follow.
    I was discovering that life just simply isn't fair and bask in the unsung glory of knowing that each obstacle overcome along the way only adds to the satisfaction in the end. Nothing great, after all, was ever accomplished by anyone sulking in his or her misery.
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  7. #27
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    Re: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

    the polar bears are disappearing


    *puts on flak jacket*

  8. #28
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    Re: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    But the reason corrupt governments even worry about stealing water/food is because it's in such short supply. In this country, it doesn't even cross our minds that the government would steal our drinking water, because water is so abundant it's virtually free, so there wouldn't be any need to steal it.

    Just like with democracy, I think the causal link between water and stability is far stronger in the opposite direction. Lack of clean water is frequently a CAUSE of conflict, whereas conflict itself is rarely the primary cause of lack of clean water (although it can certainly exacerbate the problem). IMO, providing people with clean water is the most important because it addresses the root cause of many of the other things: For example, 50% of the global disease burden is caused by lack of clean water; poverty and lack of education are often caused by people having to spend the majority of their day gathering water from miles away; conflicts are often fueled by water shortages (e.g. Israel/Palestine, Sudan/Chad, Somalia, Pakistan), etc.
    True, and if these people could cast aside their differences and work together....
    I am asking them to scuttle their religions...yes, I know that this means more than life itself....

  9. #29
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    Re: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

    Quote Originally Posted by Kandahar View Post
    What, in your opinion, is the biggest problem facing humanity? Suppose that you had one wish, which you had to use altruistically to make the world a better place. Which do you think would do the most "good" (however you want to define that), and why?

    - Providing everyone in the world with access to clean water
    - Providing everyone in the world with enough nutritious food
    - Providing everyone in the world with free, high-quality K-12 education
    - Providing everyone in the world with access to Western-quality health care
    - Providing everyone in the world with access to information and communication (e.g. the internet)
    - Bringing peace, stability, and safety to every part of the world
    - Bringing democracy and freedom to every part of the world
    - Developing a 100% clean, very cheap source of energy that could be produced and distributed anywhere in the world
    - Developing an effective, efficient transportation infrastructure in all parts of the world
    - Other
    I would say teaching self reliance and sharing mutual love & respect with others.

  10. #30
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    Re: What is the biggest problem facing humanity?

    I don't have a link but I am morally certain that the biggest problem facing humanity is people.

    What a crock of **** most humans are. Just look around you. Sure, YOU are a fabulous human but look at the rest of these clods. It's just depressing.

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