All Dangerous Ideas Articles

Radical ideas from serious thinkers

  • #20: Doctors Are Bad for Your Health

    You may want to think twice before your next visit to the doctor's office. According to Dr. Barbara Starfield's now-famous study, iatrogenic deaths (those resulting from treatment by physicians or surgeons) are...

  • #32: Implant Memory Chips in Our Brains

    Dr. Gary Marcus, a psychology professor at New York University, says we should develop a "Google-like" chip that could be implanted in our brains to enhance human memory.

  • A Robot Bill of Rights?

    As the pace of technology advances and machines begin to more closely resemble humans, should robots be granted legal rights? Some countries are already laying the groundwork.

  • #33: Make the U.S. Presidency a Single, 6-Year Term

    Re-election campaigns distract U.S. presidents from their executive duties. Should we eliminate them in favor of longer terms?

  • Big Think Readers' Most Dangerous Ideas

    August may be behind us, but that doesn't mean we've stopped thinking dangerously here at Big Think. At the end of last month, we asked readers to submit their own dangerous ideas—ideas that we may have overlooked...

  • #31: Allow Pro Athletes to Use Steroids

    Dr. Norman Frost of the University of Wisconsin at Madison tells Big Think "drug-testing policies in professional sports are completely illogical."

  • Tell Us What "Dangerous Ideas" You Like

    Now that August, Big Think's month of thinking dangerously, is over, we'd like you to give a thumbs up or a thumbs down to 10 of the radical ideas we presented.

  • #30: Tax Fat People

    If Americans were paid to eat less and exercise more they might be motivated to lose some weight—and save us a bundle on health care—says Dr. Barry M. Popkin, director of University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill's...

  • #29: Let Elephants and Lions Roam the Great Plains

    We are currently in the midst of earth's "sixth great extinction." For the past 10,000 years, existing species have been dying out faster than new species have been evolving, say scientists. Big Think expert and...

  • #28: Create New Life Forms

    What do God, Dr. Frankenstein, and Lady Gaga have in common? They are all names that geneticist-cum-media-sensation Craig Venter has been called since announcing in May that he had created the first synthetic life...

  • #27: Control the Weather

    Using lasers to manipulate the weather sounds like science fiction, but researchers at the University of Geneva have done just that. In May, Dr. Jerome Kasparian unveiled the results of a study which used a...

  • #26: Disband NATO

    It's been over 20 years since the Berlin Wall fell, yet the North Atlantic Treaty Alliance (NATO), a military group which was originally created to defend Western Europe from Russia, continues to exist, with 28...

  • #25: Abolish Primary Elections

    Richard Pildes, professor of constitutional law at the NYU School of Law, says primary elections exacerbate political polarization. He thinks we should replace them with instant-runoff voting.

  • #24: Free All Software

    "Software should always be free because all users of software deserve freedom," says Richard Stallman, founder of the Free Software Foundation and the GNU Project, and a longtime activist. But he's not talking...

  • #23: Cut Special Education

    "Is the purpose of public education to nurse students or to teach them?" asks Brian Crosby, a twenty-year veteran high school English teacher and the founder of the American Education Association, in his book...

  • #22: Polygamy Is Feminist

    Polygamy is alive and well in parts of America. According to researchers at Brigham Young University, there are 30,000 to 50,000 people currently living a polygamist lifestyle in the United States, many of them in...

  • #21: Mandatory Bible Study

    Yale professor David Gelernter tells Big Think that America should acknowledge its identity as a Judeo-Christian society and mandate teaching of the Bible in our public schools. America is a pluralistic...

  • #19: Design Your Baby

    What would you do to give your child a head-start in life? If you’re one of the millions of so-called “helicopter parents” we discussed previously in our series, the answer is “a lot.” From macrobiotic baby food...

  • #18: Gravity Doesn't Exist

    There are few things we take more for granted than the concept of gravity. Through history, physicists like Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein have developed theories about the Universe that depended on the idea...

  • #17: Let Prisoners Vote

    Ohio State University law professor Douglas A. Berman says everyone affected by society's laws ought to have a right to vote—even if they have to mail in their ballot from the big house. There are currently 2.3...