What is Big Think?  

We are Big Idea Hunters…

We live in a time of information abundance, which far too many of us see as information overload. With the sum total of human knowledge, past and present, at our fingertips, we’re faced with a crisis of attention: which ideas should we engage with, and why? Big Think is an evolving roadmap to the best thinking on the planet — the ideas that can help you think flexibly and act decisively in a multivariate world.

A word about Big Ideas and Themes — The architecture of Big Think

Big ideas are lenses for envisioning the future. Every article and video on bigthink.com and on our learning platforms is based on an emerging “big idea” that is significant, widely relevant, and actionable. We’re sifting the noise for the questions and insights that have the power to change all of our lives, for decades to come. For example, reverse-engineering is a big idea in that the concept is increasingly useful across multiple disciplines, from education to nanotechnology.

Themes are the seven broad umbrellas under which we organize the hundreds of big ideas that populate Big Think. They include New World Order, Earth and Beyond, 21st Century Living, Going Mental, Extreme Biology, Power and Influence, and Inventing the Future.

Big Think Features:

12,000+ Expert Videos

1

Browse videos featuring experts across a wide range of disciplines, from personal health to business leadership to neuroscience.

Watch videos

World Renowned Bloggers

2

Big Think’s contributors offer expert analysis of the big ideas behind the news.

Go to blogs

Big Think Edge

3

Big Think’s Edge learning platform for career mentorship and professional development provides engaging and actionable courses delivered by the people who are shaping our future.

Find out more
Close
With rendition switcher

Transcript

Question: What should be the big issues in the 2008 US presidential election?

Jimmy Wales: Big issues. Wow. I don’t even know. I think in the short term, I think that both political parties are so problematic in so many ways that it’s really difficult to say what issues they could even possibly address in their current state.

Certainly there are some very practical issues that have to be dealt with obviously. The situation in Iraq is currently quite a mess, and somebody’s got to do something about it. We don’t have a choice of making it go away. And so the question of, “Do we commit more resources there? Do we commit fewer resources there? Do we leave? What do we do? How do we do it?”

That’s obviously very important, and of course has an impact on all the other things that I was talking about – about our image abroad; how do we educate people in the values that are beneficial? And well I wouldn’t envy anybody to try to figure out how to get us to a better place in the Iraq situation. So that’s clearly an issue that I personally will be very interested in hearing from the candidates about.

I think some of the simple answers just don’t make any sense to me. You know, the simple answer of, “Let’s just pull out all our troops tomorrow and go home.” Well that’s just unbelievably immoral to leave the situation there completely wrecked, and clearly to fall under the hands of the worst possible thugs. Very bad idea. Okay what does that mean? Keep doing what we’re doing? That doesn’t seem to be working very well. Send three times as many troops over? That doesn’t seem like a great idea either. I don’t know the answer.

So we’re in this really tough situation, and I’m really looking for somebody to come up with some new, innovative solutions that sound useful. And I don’t think there’s going to be anything that makes everything wonderful there. It’s too late for that. But hopefully we can do the most ethical things possible and try to help to some extent.

 

Recorded On: Aug 10, 2007

 

What should be the big issu...

Newsletter: Share: