Measurement of a quantum observable (in an appropriate, old-fashioned sense) necessarily involves coupling to a system with a macroscopically large number of degrees of freedom. Entanglement with this "apparatus" takes care of the decoherence. It is often said (I can provide references upon request) that the remaining problem is the one of "selection", and this is the point where one invariably invokes something philosophically radical, like many-worlds interpretation.
In the above (pretty standard) context, I am trying to make sense of the following observation. Looking at the measuring system from a statistical mechanics point of view, it seems that triggering a particular macroscopic outcome requires spontaneous symmetry breaking via a (thermodynamically) irreversible transition of the "apparatus" from a metastable to a higher entropy final state. My attitude is that "statistical mechanics point of view" is not far from "decoherent large quantum system".
So, the question is:
Is it fair to say that statistical irreversibility ("the second law") and quantum measurement irreversibility (the "wave-function collapse") are necessarily linked? Can this link be made more concrete (e.g., traced in details in a particular model)? Can you give references to approaches to the measurement problem that explore this connection?