The National Institute of Theology
Lots of charlatans spend lots of money advertising diets and health products that don’t work. We have a National Institutes of Health that, among other things, funds studies that make more-objective pronouncements on diet and health.
Argue pro or con: It would be a good investment (payback would exceed opportunity cost) for the US government to create a National Institute of Theology, that would fund research into theological questions. For instance:
How effective is prayer?
Which religions are the most effective (at healing the sick, making their adherents rich, or other metrics)?
What is the probability that someone will become happier, more productive, less violent, or commit acts of terrorism as a result of joining different religions (or not joining any)?
Everyone, religious and atheist, should be motivated to want the answers to these questions to become widely known.
(Yes, I know this would be politically impractical. Pointing that out is not interesting. What is interesting, is whether such a NIT would be beneficial, supposing it could be made.)