I tend to agree with you that according to everything we know, a measurably evolving proton/electron mass ratio would imply a much more dramatic evolution of the vacuum energy [...] unless there exists some more robust cancellation mechanism that keeps vacuum energy tiny.
I still hope that both the anthropic principle as well as the conjectured evolving constants will be superseded by future research.
You seem more than just a little bit lost and confused. If you want to find the "robust mechanism" that keeps the vacuum energy "tiny", then you should go have a look in the mirror. Okay, bad example, but the reason that we are here is the answer to what holds the expanding universe flat and stable, so if you want to know the answer to your question then you have to figure out what it is that humans do that makes us important.
Brandon Carter correctly noted that... "our situation is not necessarily central, but it is inevitably privileged to some extent".
This point is critically important to this, because the anthropic principle readily extends to, and cannot be restricted from incuding the arms of every spiral galaxy that evolved within the same "layer/habitable-zone" of conditions, (time and location-wise), as our own galaxy, (in terms of the commonality and continuity in the evolution of the same basic raw materials that were produced by our observed carbon chauvinistic universe). In this case, the principle is "biocentric", meaning that life is more-generally important to the physics of the universe at this particular time in its history, and so it will necessarily be every bit as common to the universe as the physical need for it demands.
In this same scientific context, scientists will ask questions like; I wonder if intelligent life does something that cumulatively affects the physics of the universe that makes it necessary to the process? The implication that we're not here by accident isn't so special if something that intelligent life does makes it cumulatively necessary to the thermodymaic process of the universe, because life will then be as common to the universe as the need for it demands.
If the most accurate cosmological principle is anthropic in nature, then it is highly probable that the connection between the forces of the universe and humans also extends to the evolutionary process of humans and the universe to higher-orders of the same basic structure.
So there should be some identifiable mechanism for this that will prove it.
If you don't knee-jerk react to automatically reject observational evidence for biocentric structuring, then one of the first questions that should come to mind is... "What is it that intelligent life does that makes it cumulatively advantageous enough to the physics of the universe that the constants of nature would naturally fall into place in a manner that brings intelligent life into existence at a specific time and location in the history of the universe?" This is an honest scientific question that naturally falls out of the implications that biocentric input into the evolutionary process of the universe derives a possible solution to why the forces are constrained in the manner that they are. If the most accurate cosmological principle is biocentric in nature, then the principle is telling us the good physical reason why the forces are constrained in the manner that they are. This science should not be ignored because politics and misplaced perceptions about geocentric arrogance get in the way.
Lee Smolin and others have noted that the structure of our universe is set-up to maximize the production of black holes... 'there isn't a universe that could exist that would create more black holes than this one.'
So it should be no great surprise to find out that black holes and intelligent life are two of only three known or expected sources for creating matter/antimatter pairs, which directly affects the symmetry/flatness of the universe...
hmmmmmm... isn't it amazing what you can figure out once you lose the lame rationale for hating something that you haven't bothered to seriously investigate?
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