Douthwaite claims that technological fixes temporarily solve social problems and buy time for implementing interdisciplinary solutions. Yet according to Johnston, “technological fixes” originate from those in society who wield technology and therefore “can disfavor groups or environments that are not identified as the intended beneficiaries” (Johnston, 53). Johnston additionally warns against short-term technological fixes because they camouflage the true sources of problems and may delay the implementation of suitable solutions. Also critiquing Douthwaite’s ideas, the Huesemann text demonstrates that the universe, through quantum mechanics and evolutionary processes, has uncertainty and randomness. This lack of order begs the question of whether human “fixes” are ever knowledgeable enough to avoid unforeseen consequences (Huesemann, 13). Johnston and the Huesemanns agree that technological fixes are a hazardous reductionist tool that oversimplifies the multifaceted origins of social problems.
The negative repercussions of technological fixes arise from the complex interplay of our world. The earth has 3 billion years’ worth of interconnected living structure and processes. Every human action plays into the broader positive and negative feedback loops of nature. And the more aggressive the technological fix, the harsher the natural consequences will be for all. For example, rapid consumption of fossil fuel for the comfort and betterment of industrial nations has exasperated climate change for everyone on earth whether they drive a car or not (Huesemann, 8). The question of whether technology should kneel to unintended consequences may be in vain. The reality is technology will not stop progressing. Despite any amount of social outcry on the consequences of technological fixes there will always be a few select scientists, engineers, countries, or militaries to push the technological boundaries in society. With technology, civilizations can save or crucify themselves. Either way technology isn’t going anywhere.