As the development of a free-market system gave rise to the notions of liberal humanism in the 17th and 18th centuries, I see current understandings and developments in modern capitalism as the most powerful force causing the evolution of the post-human. In a nation obsessed with gaining a competitive edge over economic rivals, the idea of a post-human physically and mentally superior to humans in other countries is incredibly tantalizing. Thus, it comes to no surprise that many works of fiction that portray the post-human, such as Minority Report and other works of Phillip K. Dick that depict futuristic worlds in which society is totally dominated by capitalism and “hegemonic corporations act behind the scenes to affect outcomes that the populace is led to believe are the result of democratic procedures” (Hayles 167). For example, in Minority Report Lamar deliberately manipulates the system from behind the scenes in order to convince the American public to vote for the pre-crime program to apply to the entire nation. Without receiving the whole truth of how pre-crime works, any democratic vote would be a facade.
Furthermore, the continually developing ideal of the post-human totally ignores the global effects of an unheeded pursuit of a superior future. It is, as Langdon Winner noted, an inherently selfish one. I continue to see the ideal post-human as a creation of an increasingly narcissistic society, that also ignores the negative side-effects the post-human has in our own understanding of what it means to be a human being. There appears to be a process of reverse reification, in that once people acquire exchange value, they lose their sense of vitality. The post-human is the very manifestation of this phenomenon, as we acquire transhuman abilities and characteristics, I think we will inevitably lose definitively human traits, such as empathy, because our motives in pursuing the post-human are so selfish. We do not seek the post-human to make society better, but to make our own personal lives easier and more pleasurable. In our wake, we continue to ignore all the problems modern technology has already created and failed to solve.