Suspending Wade’s Wire

Dear Wade’s Wire Subscriber:

I appreciate your subscription and the occasional feedback some of you have offered. However, I’m suspending Wade’s Wire.  

Support for my efforts has been lukewarm, and participation has declined, which leads me to this step. I’m also suspending the weekly FromWade. , the monthly Mutual Empowerment newsletter, and all other outreach efforts for the Compassionate Humanity Community website

I’ll continue researching questions that puzzle me, write about my results (which will clarify my thinking), and put reports on these efforts on the website. To see changes to the site, you can visit What’s New

If and when readers post or email me comments, I’ll discuss them. I may also engage in one-on-one interviews or small group dialogues and post them. 

The site’s resources are a reference book for me. I use them to refresh my memory, draw on its content, and document my arguments. 

Still, I resign myself to my relative solitude. It seems the site, as conceived, will likely never attract substantial engagement in the near future. Most people are narrowly focused and/or self-centered, and no one wants to collaborate actively with me.

Since 1967, I’ve dedicated my life to integrating the personal and the political. More recently, with colleagues, we’ve co-convened several workshops exploring how personal growth practitioners and political activists might learn from each other and improve their efforts by incorporating others’ best practices. As James Baldwin said, “The messiness of the world is reflected in the messiness of our interior lives.” I’ve also experimented with many methods that could help with these efforts and written about successful experiments.

The Compassionate Humanity Community project has promoted the following:

  • Holistic reform.
  • A network of small teams that affirm the System as the primary problem.
  • Mutual support for self-improvement (especially unlearning the desire to dominate and the willingness to submit).
  • A powerful grassroots holistic reform movement similar to yet more powerful than the union, civil rights, and women’s movements. 

Many obstacles block progress on these goals. 

Baldwin declared, “I really do believe that we can all become better than we are. I know we can.  But the price is enormous, and people are not yet willing to pay it.” 

In “Desire, Dopamine, and the Internet,” L. M. Sacasas, editor of The Convivial Society, wrote:

Human beings will naturally seek distractions rather than confront their thoughts in moments of solitude and quiet because those thoughts will eventually lead them to consider unpleasant matters such as their mortality, the vanity of their endeavors, and the general frailty of the human condition. 

We are all of us kings now surrounded by devices [that] prevent us from thinking about ourselves.

Fear rules. 

I may be ahead of my time or living in the clouds. Regardless, I’m alone or largely alone. I resign myself to this reality and pause to reconsider my tactics.

Bob Dylan wrote, “I’d become my enemy in the instant that I preach.” But what does it mean to preach, and what is wrong with it?

To preach is to strongly advocate a firmly held belief or encourage a specific course of action with intense conviction. It involves one-way efforts to persuade, convert, and recruit. 

Certain situations, such as political campaigns, justify this approach. (However, even here, a less top-down approach that involves more listening and learning may be more effective.)

I fear I’ve been pretentious, grandiose, arrogant, and utopian — preaching and indulging in “the vanity of (my) endeavors.” I’m no polymath. I’m a “slow thinker.” My memory is limited. 

Now, I’ll try to be more humble. I’ll continue to try to learn more, share my discoveries, discuss them with anyone interested, and listen to and learn from others’ thoughts and feelings. I’ll continue to pursue Truth, Justice, Beauty, and Virtue. I’ll do more suggesting and less proposing

I’d like to inspire people to engage in deep self-examination and mutual support to reduce suffering and promote justice, but I don’t expect these efforts to achieve much in my lifetime. Maybe the website will be my legacy that others find valuable in after I die. 

Regardless, my efforts reward me intrinsically. 

Carry it on, 


Dopamine Culture Dialogue

From Wade: April 8, 2024

Reader’s Comments

Re: Hypocrisy
Eva Paterson:
3/31 – It’s also tragic and disheartening 

4/4 – Looks like Biden may be finally standing up to the right-wing folks in Israel


Re: [fromwade] Mutual Empowerment, April 2024

“Humans are torn between fear and anger on the one hand and trust and love on the other.”

Dan Brook:

It is easier to exploit fear and anger than to inspire trust and love. Authoritarian leaders, generals, advertisers, media, clergy, coaches, et al. know this well, whether they know about our negativity bias or not. Remember “if it bleeds, it leads”? If we miss the saber tooth tiger stalking us, we may lose our lives, but if we miss the juicy fruit tree, we’ll still survive that loss. Therefore, our evolutionary biology has taught us, perhaps even hardwired us, to react to fear more because it can be more practical on a basic existential level. Overcoming this negativity bias takes more energy and consciousness; it’s an uphill trek where we can hopefully get a better view, though probably with more sweat and sore feet.


Re: Editor’s Report – 3/18/24

Kathy Labriola:

Hi Wade,

I have read your most recent post to the list, but I am not clear how it is in any way a response to my email or my comments. And I think it would be a terrible mistake for Biden to step aside now from running for re-election, since an incumbent always has an edge over a new candidate, and there are no other candidates that would have the level of support he has among Democrats and the potential for undecided voters to vote for him rather than Trump.+++++

Re: Americans Pay a High Price for the GOP’s Fiscal Irresponsibility, by Dan Brook:

Republicans keep wasting our money on their ideological boondoggles that are typically unsuccessful and do nothing to help real people.

A Personal and Social Change Survey

Some time ago, I circulated “A Personal and Social Change Survey” and recently posted a report on the responses.  Nine individuals responded helpfully, which I appreciate. 

Overall, the respondents appreciated the values affirmed on the Compassionate Humanity Community website and supported the general drift of the corrective actions presented. Receiving this support is heartening. 

The responses to the open-ended questions were rich. You may want to read them closely and absorb the insights you find helpful. The report is here


Mutual Empowerment April 2024

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promoting holistic reform

April 2024

Egalitarian Seeds

“You can be whatever you want to be.”

“What’s in it for me (WIIFM)?”

“Money is a way to keep score.”

“Greed is good.”

“Anyone can move from rags to riches with enough hard work.”

“The poor are responsible for their poverty.”

“The rich deserve their wealth.”

“Somebody’s gotta win and somebody’s gotta lose.”

“Winning is everything.”

“Go along to get along.”

“Keep up with the Joneses.”

“Mom, I have to have a smartphone because everyone has one.”

“Someone must always be in charge.”

“My workplace is a dictatorship.”

“At least I can be boss in my home.”

Society implants these hyper-individualistic, materialistic beliefs deep within people’s minds, which inflames instincts to dominate and submit for personal gain.

Our social system claims to be based on merit, equality, and a level playing field, but in fact, it exalts wealth, power, and status, however gained. The elite rule, supposedly deservedly, in every arena.

Humans are torn between fear and anger on the one hand and trust and love on the other. Fully facing this tension is necessary to resolve it. Chronic denial and distraction are deadly. We must acknowledge our best and our worst instincts. Only then can we most effectively relieve suffering and promote justice.

We can pause for rest and recreation, take care of ourselves so we can better care for others, and then reengage to pursue Truth, Justice, and Beauty and organize (structure) activities that cultivate holistic reform.

Numerous advocates presented in the Systemic knowledge base on the Compassionate Humanity Community website promote the compassionate holistic democratic reform of our top-down, selfish society. They address the whole person and the whole society, deal with complete systems, propose mutual support for self-improvement, and promote structural reforms rooted in moral transformation. These efforts don’t echo each other precisely, but they share many core principles and move in the same direction. [read more]

“Supercommuicators,” Interview with Charles Duhigg

Whether it is expletive-filled letter writing or the kind of political campaigning we discussed earlier in the program, there’s one skill they both require, and that is effective communication. Of course, throughout history and still today, it’s a tool of the powerful for both good and bad, but it’s also crucial in all of our daily lives, in the workplace, in our personal relationships, and more than ever online. [read more] (posted in Communication)

Desire, Dopamine, and the Internet,” L. M. Sacasas

In “Desire, Dopamine, and the Internet,” L. M. Sacasas, editor of The Convivial Society, argues

Part of what is going on is that, having grown up with devices at the ready, many people are now simply unable to imagine how to live apart from the steady stream of stimuli that they supply.

Human beings will naturally seek distractions rather than confront their own thoughts in moments of solitude and quiet because those thoughts will eventually lead them to consider unpleasant matters such as their own mortality, the vanity of their endeavors, and the general frailty of the human condition.

We are all of us kings now surrounded by devices whose only purpose is to prevent us from thinking about ourselves. [read more] (posted in Big Tech)

“Sisyphus on the Street,” A review by Jason DeParle

In “Sisyphus on the Street,” Jason DeParle reviews Rough Sleepers: Dr. Jim O’Connell’s Urgent Mission to Bring Healing to Homeless People by Tracy Kidder….

DeParle reports that in Kidder’s book “there’s not much about the broader inequality from which homelessness springs and almost nothing about politics or the paucity of housing aid…. To connect the policy dots,” DeParle writes, “readers might consult Marybeth Shinn and Jill Khadduri’s In the Midst of Plenty: Homelessness and What to Do About It (2020), a clear-eyed journey through a rich academic literature.” [read more] (Posted in Housing/Homelessness)

“The Anxious Generation.” Interview with Jonathan Haidt by Walter Isaacson, Transcript, April 1, 2024, Amanpour and Co.

Smartphones and social media have altered children’s development. Jonathan Haidt joins Hari to talk about how parents can manage the negative impacts. [read more] (added in Big Tech)

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