Hackers and Whistleblowers have recovered the transparency that was undone by Citizens United.
The long-foretold transparent society is nearly here, but not in the way we would have expected. Rather than voluntary transparency through an easing of inhibitions, we have an involuntary one now thanks to hackers and whistleblowers like Wikileaks and Edward Snowden. Because of hacking and investigative journalism, campaign spending is now semi-transparent, thus muting the ill-effects foretold after the Supreme Court's Citizens United ruling. The rate of major leaks today is like Watergate, just with ten times the frequency.
If suffering is subjective, it can be unlimited. If it can be unlimited, a single person's suffering could be worse the suffering of millions.
Because of the subjective nature of suffering, it's possible that a person exists or has existed, who experiences a suffering that's a million times worse than the pedestrian headache of a neurotypical person.
Something similar to this is depicted in an episode of the British sci-fi series Black Mirror. The episode shows a future where we punish criminals by forcing them to relive an objectionable part of their life as a form of penance. The police do this by connecting wires to your head, which then suspend your consciousness so that it can be manipulated by an operator. The operator can then place you into any situation, whether it's an empty room or a part of your memory. They can then set any number of repetitions such that it feels like you're living a nightmare that lasts a week, a year, or a millennium.
Likewise, it's possible that insane asylum patients experience similar millions of pain. While only a tiny percentage of people are clinically insane, it would only take one of them with this boundless condition to suffer more than the suffering of every other human being combined.
The half-baked mental health practices of the past half-millenia might be responsible for the modern increase in neuroses.
Many people avoid going to the doctor today because they "hate hospitals," which seems like an unhealthy attitude. And yet, only two generations ago, such a mindset would have been useful given how unhygienic hospitals were and how undeveloped medicine was. After all, back then doctors prescribed cigarettes and cocaine. Likewise, there are people today who "hate therapists," which is somewhat justified given that meta-analyses for talk therapy have yet to prove its efficacy whole-heartedly. Two generations from now, we may look back at our addiction to the immature field of psychology and ask ourselves, "What were we thinking?"
In 1596, author A. T. wrote in A Rich Store-House or Treasury for the Diseased a list on mental health titled "A Rule to knowe what things are good and holesome for the Braine," which includes items such as sleeping in moderation, avoiding music, abstaining from too much bathing or drinking, and making sure to wash the temples of the head with rose water. Back then, it would have behooved you to be skeptical of any guides on mental health. If you did partake, in the best case scenario you might find relief through placebo, but in the worst case, you might harm yourself with ritual.
Fast-forward to today, and pop psychology is part of our culture, which may explain the modern rise in neuroses. Even if there is a 50-50 chance that the mental health ideas are good or bad, the mis-application may overwhelm whatever positive benefits we get. At the very least, it creates a culture of meta-cognition, wherein we are critical of our thoughts and think we have to keep doing things to them, such as revising them. This extra mental load could then provide the impetus for more psychological solutions, creating a feedback loop, similar to how doctors used blood-letting to cure vapors that were induced by potions to relieve consumption.
The replacement fertility rate could stand at 1 if we assume women only need to replace themselves.
Fertility rates for developed countries are declining, with the United States at 1.86 per woman and Europe at 1.59. Fertility rates are even lower for sub-groups within those populations who are white, educated, or are wealthy. The headlines surrounding these usually involve panic or decline, but to evolutionists, surprise is a more common reaction, because it seems counter-evolutionary to have a fertility rate lower than the replacement rate (2.00).
However, no nation has a fertility rate lower than 1.00, and while having one child is a marked departure from having two children, it's all a giant leap from having no children. Childlessness is the termination or failure of evolution, whereas having at least one child is still the continuation of evolution.
And it may not even be mere continuation, but rather our poor definition of replacement. We assume the replacement fertility rate is 2.00 because there's two parents involved. If we only consider the female's perspective, the replacement rate could be 1.00, since women only have to replace themselves. Theoretically, if the world had one men, a global fertility rate of anything just above 1.00 would still replace the world.
Women who seek "tall, dark, and handsome" men are more likely to have darker daughters.
The Red Queen Hypothesis describes an arms race to be the most fetching member of one's sex. If, for example, the first person with blue eyes in a tribe gets 5% more attention, then both the gene for blue eyes and an interest in blue eyes will prosper, and eventually blue eyes will become a hot genetic feature. According to the authors of the Hypothesis, this runaway evolution explains both peacock feathers and the complexity of the human brain.
From this pattern, though, comes another one, whereby each sex's unique arms races have cross-sexual arms races as well. For example, fairness is a feminine notion, whereas "tall, dark, and handsome" is a masculine one. In history, both notions have existed in tension, going back and forth in dominance. If a woman seeks a darker man, their children are likely to be darker, which would be a disadvantage for daughters if men are seeking fairer women. Likewise if men like fairer women, their children will be fairer as well, leading sons to lose out. Together, the notions are like magnets swaying a pendulum, swinging the race's skin color in various directions depending on trade-offs between UV risks unique to their geography and trendy notions of gendered beauty.
Modern technology complicates the picture, though. Sunscreen can offset the risks of pale skin, and in India, skin-whitening products are a multi-billion dollar industry. All of which may explain the relative weakness of the male darkness notion of beauty compared to the boom in feminine fairness.