Baby Formula Shortage and Technocratic Evil

A lot of pain and dehumanizing damage in the world takes place due to “technical rationality,” which Hannah Arendt referred to as the “banality of evil.” Here I discuss the baby formula shortage as an example of how “wicked problems” are caused by layers and layers of failures that can be traced back to a lack of fundamental responsibility. In our world, no one is responsible except for the discrete part they play in the overall machine whose inhuman, abstract, and often “CYA” formulations govern their responses and behavior. The evil of non-being comes through in the inertia of organizations and the inaction and conformity of lots of people over long periods of time.

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