I started writing this thinking it would be a couple of paragraphs.
I was sadly, sadly wrong. So I've divided it up a bit. Hope you don't mind. I do have a summary at the bottom and a "TL;DR" at the top.
Too Long; Didn't Read:
Keep the answer deleted. Get rid of some other poor answers, and improve similar questions.
Does it answer the question?
The answer answers the question, technically. Funding the fossil fuel industry would, in the long run, hurt the human race. 'Course, we're already doing that. But this would accelerate it. So I feel like it's an answer, from a certain point of view.1
What about these ones?
Let me give some other answers to the same question (some deleted, some not):
- Fund analysis and development of the next Candy Crush.
One: Create an internet virus. Use stuxnet as a template.
. . .
Four: Hide until the holy war is over.
- Start a website where you can ask or answer strange questions. Call it "QueueExchange".
These are some examples of joke answers the question received. While I hate to call out specific posts, it should be clear that these were not meant seriously. There was at least one other answer that I feel is extremely poor, but I won't quote it because I don't wish to embarrass that person.
Yet all of these answers answer the question. They could, in principle, happen.
It should be clear that we don't want the site to descend into a bunch of jokes. Yet it seems that at times, we don't quite take things seriously. Is this the fault of the asker or the answerers? Could the asker have done a better job of posing the question, or should the answerers just kept quiet? Is it that the question is too broad, in the sense that there are too many possible answers?
How can I . . . ?
Perhaps the question is too broad because it is, like many other (popular) questions on Worldbuiling, a "How can I . . ." question. This one doesn't literally use those words, but it's in the spirit of them. It sets a task and asks for ways to accomplish that task. These questions seem to be too broad. Just look at the list!2
These questions do inadvertently encourage jokes. Are there some gems? Absolutely. Are there some awesome answers? Yes! But there are a lot of joke answers, too.
What I'm trying to say is that there are poor answers to these sort of questions. We need to re-examine them and perhaps do a bit of cleanup. I don't just mean mods and high-rep users coming in a deleting stuff (though that may happen); I mean a concerted effort by everyone - askers, answerers, editors - to fix up these questions.
I didn't answer your question
I don't think I actually answered your question yet. Perhaps near the beginning. But I digressed.
Actually, looking back, I did answer it. I think that it's not fair to this answer to delete it when there are other, shorter, joke answers that are still up, and getting votes.3
So I vote that we either A) undelete this one or B) significantly improve/delete other non-serious answers. Not just on the question at hand, but on other past questions.
I'm actually much more in favor of B).
- This answer addresses the question but was deleted.
- Other answers are jokes, but (also) address the question and stay up.
- "How can I . . . ?" questions seem to get a lot of poor answers.
- Let's address these poor answers.
- Either undelete this answer or (as I would favor) get rid of the joke answers, too.
- We have to improve the "How can I . . .?" questions to avoid getting joke answers.
1 Possibly from the same point of view that Darth Vader killed Anakin, admittedly.
2 A couple of mine are in there, unfortunately.
3 Fortunately, the really good answers are being rewarded a lot more.