We Can Change!


We Can Change Our Wicked Problems!


This exploration began with experiences of:  stopping, relaxing and disengaging from existing systems; openly, appreciatively and respectfully experiencing other ways of living and being around the world; taking time to slow down, stop thinking, and experience being part of nature; and meditating, releasing and discovering that something felt “off” about our lives.  There is bad feeling in the air around us.


Random articles had provided snippets of wicked problems, met with head shaking and disappointment, followed by returning to working harder to try to make it at least work for me inside current systems.  Stopping and shifting motivated efforts to explore systems and issues deeper, to better understand what’s going on in them, by searching for and stitching together facts and information found by others, available to anyone publicly, rather than opinions.  Dig into endnotes or your own research for more!

Although we may feel very exhausted by these explorations of some of our many wicked problems, these explorations have not been exhaustive.  They’re pretty cursory examinations of these social issues, systems or dimensions, just a human being trying to develop an open, honest understanding of them, using common sense, without partisanship, trying not to have pre-conceived or -conditioned notions, without hate, anger, resentment or other negative emotions, but sniffing out things that are not right, mostly, things that feel significantly broken, bad or wrong, by cobbling together facts found by others.  Books could be written about each of these wicked problems.  We live in a very complex world, now.

They’re not entirely fair.  Of course, there are still things that work in the U.S.  Progress is being made in ending marijuana prohibition and getting good people out of prison systems for its victimless “crimes”.  Positive scientific and technological breakthroughs and advances are happening faster than ever before.  The macro economy, employment and inflation are reportedly doing well.  Sexual harassment is being called out and shamed publicly.  Intentional communities and ecovillages are emerging and thriving.  More people know and care about eating organic foods.  Look at the cool stuff coming out of Elon Musk!  Many of us are doing wonderful and positive things, at the edges.  The situation is not utterly hopeless. 

Yet, problems identified in each of these U.S. social issues, systems or dimensions, many of which mirror problems in other countries, are big, real and important, and it’s painful to recognize their brokenness.  It’s hard to deny that there is something seriously wrong in each of these social systems or issues, and many of these problems affect and interact with problems in other social system dimensions or issues.  There are many other problems, issues and aspects of these problems that aren’t addressed here. 

These efforts took 25 different slices through the apple of our current society and examined them, and in each slice found deep, fundamental brokenness and corruption that are doing big and real harms.  So, one can conclude the apple’s rotten, decaying fast.  There’s a pattern of abuse.  Our society is broken.  None of these systems is working well.  None are sustainable.  Their trends all lead to eventual collapse, collapse which will be very painful and harmful to most of us, and to our children, and theirs.

Most of us are not consciously aware of all of this.  We are too consumed trying to make our lives work in decaying conditions, or too lost in distractions or substances to engage with them.  Then, when we’re confronted with the brokenness in domains where we have responsibilities, we get our hackles up.  We’re offended, or become defensive.  Yeah, we do what we do that contributes to these problems, but look at everybody else in all those other areas!  They’re the real problem, not us.  We’re doing our best.  We try to divert the attention and blame from ourselves and place it on others.  We seek scapegoats.

It’s all of us.  We’re all a part of all of these problems.  In some, we have big, in others, minor roles.  Regardless of who we try to blame, we’re each part of the problems:

  • If we are driving or riding around in combustion vehicles (in traffic), or flying a lot,

  • If we consume lots of stuff, or use anything toxic, or buy things transported from far away,

  • If we’re participating in the rat races of education, healthcare or business in the U.S.,

  • If we have anything to do with neglected infrastructure or not demanding its repair,

  • If we work in or use any information or communications technologies, or aren’t fighting the demise of Net Neutrality and the dismantling of regulation of natural monopoly utilities,

  • If we are not already producing 100% of our own energy from renewable sources,

  • If we’re a lawyer, judge, prosecutor or lawmaker, or have anything to do with the legal system,

  • If we are in any way a part of the law enforcement, inhumane prison or criminal justice systems, or if we are not actively demanding their radical reform, and resisting our police state,

  • If we own or do not fight against anyone’s rights to own handguns or assault weapons,

  • If we aren’t marching in the streets to end the War on Drugs, and get voting rights for all,

  • If we try to maximize the rent we charge or the prices of our properties when we sell them,

  • If we work in healthcare, or are not demanding a simple, cheap, single payer healthcare system,

  • If we are not actively and proactively taking action every day to maintain and improve health,

  • If we work in banking, business or finance, or use or accept credit cards, or pay or receive tips,

  • If we work in tax fields, or pay taxes, or use U.S. currency, or have any debt,

  • If we are in the military, or are not marching in the streets demanding military reductions,

  • If we have anything to do with U.S. foreign policy or empire, or trying to maximize profits,

  • If we have anything to do with industrial foods, or foods not 100% locally and naturally sourced,

  • If we raise or eat meat, other than for special occasions, or are not planting trees,

  • If we cause, allow, use or buy anything that involves any toxic or greenhouse gas emissions,

  • If we don’t have a deep and personal relationship with and appreciation for wild nature,

  • If we have anything to do with scientific or technological intellectual property,

  • If we’re not living or raising children as part of close, caring and sharing communities,

  • If we have any role in government, lobbying or are not actively demanding government reform,

  • If we work in or consume news, information, or entertainments provided by others,

  • If we have anything to do with think tanks, or advocating on behalf of wealth or power,

  • If we have anything to do with marketing, business, public relations or advertisement,

  • If we feel we are compromising ourselves for our livelihoods, or don’t believe in our work,

  • If we do not have active and healthy family, children, friendship and community relationships,

  • If we use any plastics, or do not have 100% sustainability in everything we do or buy,

  • If we don’t vote, or are not participating in open rebellion on the streets demanding change, or

  • If we have enough resources and seek more for anything other than helping others.


We’re all parts of these problems.  The dominant paradigm and many of its components are broken, including most of us.  We know it, consciously or unconsciously.  We can feel it inside and around us.  Maybe that’s why we’re so infatuated with hundreds of entertainments featuring heroes.  We want a great hero to rise and save us from these threats and harms that make us feel so bad.  Guess what?  That’s unlikely.  For this to change for the better, we each have to personally find the hero deep inside, and personally do things to change, anything we can, in our own lives and networks.  Little things count. 

It seems we are reluctant to wake up, stand up and change until we are deeply shocked and forced to.  We have to be awakened and aroused to action by huge, individual and collective pains and harms.  Please receive this information in that way!  Consider it a series of 25 rude and powerful bitch slaps!  Wake up!  Look around and see what’s happening!  Get up and do something about it!  Change!

Change is inevitable, always.  We can passively sit here, griping, blaming others, hoping somebody will do something.  We’ll then experience painful changes of collapse and harms, because those of us most responsible for how things are benefit most from how things are, and are the least motivated to change.  Or, we can proactively work to create the changes we want to see in life.  Do whatever you can do!  Start creating your world and living in it the ways you would if it were the way you wish it was, now!

Most of us don’t think we have the means to do anything about this that will make a real difference.  We’re lazy, or we feel powerless.  It hurts.  These wicked problems are depressing and overwhelming.  Many fall into despair and maladies like unhealthy relationships with substances, consumption or media.  Medicating for wicked problems doesn’t work.  Wake up, get up, and change!  That’s how to feel better.

We are empowered to change in different ways.  If we’re a big part of a problem, we have a powerful and influential opportunity to make a big difference.  If not, we can make small differences individually, which add up to big differences together.  Together, we are superheroes with superpowers to change any of this.  Let’s change!  That’s common sense, right?  Nobody is as powerful as we are together. 

Many of us have given away our power to centralized systems and governments.  We must learn to take back our power and use it.  Do that by starting with any change.  Any one thing you do to make real change in your personal life is worth more than any number of sessions of complaining and feeling bad about things.  With each change you make, you will begin to feel better about yourself and the world.  You will begin to feel more powerful and able.  Keep at it, and you will become a powerful superhero!  When enough of us do that, we can change our worlds, and fix these many wicked problems!


For those of us with lots of wealth, power and abilities, how fortunate!  You have an opportunity to make a big difference!  Instead of trying to accumulate more fictional financial wealth you don’t need, enter a new phase of life, dedicated to making a real difference in improving life and circumstances for all by doing something to positively address any of our wicked problems!  Create a real wealth legacy that people will love and respect you for!  That purpose and accompanying rewards will feel really good!

For those of us who are OK financially, but not wealthy, or for those of us who are struggling, wake up, become informed and knowledgeable, and make changes in your thinking, being, behaviors and actions to change your relations with these wicked problems.  Find ways of making it better, even little ways!  Do not give away your power, money or real wealth for fictional money or fleeting consumptions!  Inside each of us is a great spirit, with incredible capacities!  You will feel better and more empowered as you experience fulfillment associated with making your own changes.  Be an example of integrity!


For those who work or otherwise have opportunities to influence organizations involved in any of these wicked problems, yay!  Use your position and opportunity to make a difference!  Stand up and speak up!  Encourage your organizations to change how they engage with these wicked problems, to become parts of solutions rather than problems!  Stakeholders and customers will appreciate that, and it will pay off!

This is the difficult first part of waking up and creating a beautiful new world, recognizing how it is now.  The next step is to change it into how we want it to be.  That is a wonderful creative process! 

If it’s not really obvious yet, lots of this material lands hard.  It feels bad to realize how broken stuff is.  But the core message of this is positive and hopeful:  we can change!  It doesn’t have to be this way.  Fortunately, we are empowered to transform, metamorphosize into something beautiful and better.  Change is apparently a universal constant.  It’s always coming.  We can know it, get off of our bottoms, engage and dance with it, creating positive experiences, or we can stay lethargically on our bottoms, and let it roll over us, and have its way with us, often having negative experiences.  Wake up, get up, dance!  Creating positive changes, lives and futures is fun, fulfilling, satisfying and rewarding.  We can do it!

All of this content is free to anybody, anywhere in the world, via the website www.wecanchange.us.  Acquiring money or power is not what it’s about.  The motivations for all this are idealistic and hopeful:  to help inform us on what’s going on and motivate us to wake up, rise up and make positive changes. 

Please help by getting informed on what’s going on, waking up, rising up and making positive change!  You can also help by:  offering a rating and review of this material, correcting any unintended errors, offering suggested content additions or changes, interacting with others in discussions about any of it, contributing readings for possible future podcast mashups, or donating money to support future efforts. 

The most important way you can participate and help is to wake up, get informed, get up and change.  Please share ideas and actions for change!  Please share this information with others!  If it’s valuable, link to it from websites, social media, online newsletters and other content to make it more visible!  Discuss these issues with others!  Share what you are doing to change with others!  Talk about why!  Gandhi advised us to “be the change you want to see in the world!”  Yeah, what he said!

Hopefully, these efforts will continue.  Two more sections are envisioned and being drafted.

We Can Change Our Programming:  If things are fundamentally broken in most of our social systems, that suggests something is wrong at some deeper level, something that affects all of them, way down in our spirits, souls, beliefs, worldviews, values, psychology, habits, emotions, conditioning and/or culture.  To make social systems wholesome, healthy and functional, we must change those underlying things.  This section will root around in those dimensions of “deep programming”, trying to use common sense, as a human being.  It will try to arrive at a draft set of simple values or principles people can use as practical, common sense guides to create a wonderful future, because thousands of laws don’t work.  Hopefully, its insights and values will be useful, not just to those in the U.S., but to humans anywhere.

We Can Change Our Future:  This section will be pure fancy, but it will be beautiful and fun and hopeful.  It will be pure fiction, make believe.  It will be set in the future, two generations out, in 2060, and be an account of change.  It will assume that enough of us did wake up, get informed, get up and change, working together using shared values, and describe some of what we did and how we went about it and the beautiful, positive and fulfilling future we share then, after narrowly avoiding catastrophic collapses.  It will be an account of how many small changes we made individually changed the world for the better.

No matter who we are, what we think, how we behave or what we do, we share kindred consciousness.  We have all we need inside us to be and do anything.  You have within you all you need to be and do it! 

Respect to all!  Acknowledgement to all!  Love and very best wishes to all! 

Chapter Input


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