We have met the Questions

By Jock Gill, exclusively for Democrats.com

Today a few short Fascinating Unasked Questions to stimulate your thinking -- or what ever needs stimulating.

#1> Our Energy Future.  The question nobody is making any effort to ask in the face of the mess in California, and President Bush's promotion of irrelevant solutions, is what will be our energy future and how do we best get there?  Or look at this way: what will be the energy source which drives our economy in 2030?  Will it be fossil carbon based?  Nuclear, or Hydrogen?  It is a sure bet it will not, in the long term, be fossil carbon energy which powers our future.  It is also a sure bet it will not be based upon centralized generation stations, although they will be in the mix.  

My bet is that the energy supply of the future is based upon distributed hydrogen solutions.  So why are our leaders in government and the media not asking the obvious question:  How do we get from here to there?  This is a great opportunity for new business formation as well as a source of positive excitement about our shared future.

The future of the Internet provides a few hints to think about:  Centralized Client Serve is being balanced by Distributed Peer-to-Peer computing.  My bet is that our energy future will follow along this path as well.  What are your thoughts?

#2>  Now that the Supremely Right Wing Federalist Society has taken over the law department at the White house,  what do you expect?   I'll say this about the Ultra conservatives, they know they are right,  and do I mean right.  Part of their strength is their dead certain conviction that they are right and that we are wrong.  But who is asking how well the Federalist Society represents what the rest of America thinks?  The America that accepts ambiguity, uncertainty and contradiction as normal part of life and can entertain more than one idea at once, is it respected and valued by the Federalist Society?  

What is especially odd is that the politics of the Federalist Society are to far out there they make the notion of "Aggressive Progressives" seem tame in contrast.  What is the rest of American going to do to counter the strident and cock sure approach of the Federalist Society?  Ignoring them is, I strongly suspect,  not an option if we cherish our civil liberties, freedom of choice, the environment, worker's rights, separation of church and state, a foreign policy of engagement rather than suppression,  truly free speech, and the notion of a civil society based on tolerance and inclusions of multiple points of view.

Do you see anywhere on the landscape an existing organization rising with deep passion to counter this challenge?  Maybe it is time to start one?

#3> Computational Mad Cow Disease:  Here is a very abstract problem which is discussed in a few pockets of the highest computer science departments which should be more broadly questioned.  Just how secure and robust is our computer infrastructure?  How resilient is it?  How able is it to support innovation, economic development as well as national security as we move into the future?  Or are we making too much of a bad bet on ancient technology from the 60s, 70s and 80s?  Are we the computational equivalent of those buildings in India which, we now know, could have been built to with stand the 7.9 quake, but, for reasons of greed and expediency, were not.  10s of thousands died in India.  How many could suffer if we bet our future on a technological infrastructure riddled with Computational Mad Cow Disease?  Would you bet a missile defense system on it?

Ok, readers, how many of you think the Bush Administration will be a part of the solution to any of these issues?  If not the Bushes, from whence do you look for a solution?  As Walt Kelly might have said, "I have met the questions, and the answers are us."

What do we call us and how do we organize to make these questions heard?

Please send your comments and your own FUQs to FUQ@democrats.com.  We must hang together or surely we will be hanged apart.

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