I vaguely remember hearing somewhere an interesting concept.
It went something like this:
The more we have introduced time-saving devices, the less time we actually seem to have.
I don't know if the two parts of this idea are related, but on a similar note, the following observation would withstand the utmost scrutiny:
The advent of computerized offices was predicted to reduce the need for paper, thus causing it's diminished use. The opposite has taken effect: due to the computer's increased capacity for paper output, we generate (and waste) more paper than ever before.
(I know. I watch as daily reports are generated. Box after box after box...)
If you ever want to thank McDonald's for using recycled paper in their sacks (do they?), don't: thank me. I create all that waste paper they recycle!