One of the things I did when I retired in 2003 was to list some questions I thought interesting that I might explore in my researches or in how I lived post retirement. I changed them a little bit in 2006 and just re-discovered them. Here is a slightly shorter version to take out conflict technical questions:
1. Why do people find it so hard to follow any disciplined process, even when it is shown to work?
2. Why do people find it so hard to apply learning from books and the classroom in the practical/work world or in their own lives?
3. Why does short-term, immediate self interest so dominate decision making? Is it evolutionary wiring we are only just growing out of?
4. Why do people self-sabotage so often?
5. Why do people spend so little of their time doing what they enjoy? Why do they try so few ways of enjoyment? Why do they invent so many ways to make themselves and others miserable?
6. In organizations, governments, political parties etc. why do so many stupid, immoral, anti-social people get promoted over more intelligent moral, pro-social ones?
7. Why do so many relatively poor people vote for conservative parties that do not serve their interests?
8. Why are people so obsessed with their position relative to others versus absolute level of their interests/life
9. Why do people want to perpetuate their genes by looking after their children, leaving them money, but fail to want to perpetuate them by looking after the planet their children need to live on?
10. Why are religions so obsessed with sex (the stopping of it or the associating of it with guilt) when their holy texts don’t spend that much time on it?
11. What would it take to convince the Republican Party/Religious Right to take global warming seriously? Aka why don’t conservatives want to conserve civilization?
12. What attracts so many people to war? How are they psychologically different from those that oppose it?
13. What really caused the Nazis and how can we avoid their return? Are they something else or is there a little Nazi in all of us that social circumstances permit us to exhibit?
14. How do we really learn so that we change ourselves?
15. Can we successfully change our selves and others to save the world?
Nearly 15 years on I haven’t really found any good answers. 🙂 But hey I still like the questions…..