Skip to comments.Rules for Radicals by Saul Alinsky - Quotes and Excerpts
Posted on 05/12/2009 3:05:00 PM PDT by CutePuppy
Quotes and Excerpts from
Rules for Radicals
See also Obama: Training an army of world servers
1. The Purpose
"A Marxist begins with his prime truth that all evils are caused by the exploitation of the proletariat by the capitalists. From this he logically proceeds to the revolution to end capitalism, then into the third stage of reorganization into a new social order of the dictatorship of the proletariat, and finally the last stage -- the political paradise of communism." p.10
"An organizer working in and for an open society is in an ideological dilemma to begin with, he does not have a fixed truth -- truth to him is relative and changing; everything to him is relative and changing.... To the extent that he is free from the shackles of dogma, he can respond to the realities of the widely different situations...." pp.10-11
2. Of Means and Ends [Forget moral or ethical considerations]
"The end is what you want, the means is how you get it. Whenever we think about social change, the question of means and ends arises. The man of action views the issue of means and ends in pragmatic and strategic terms. He has no other problem; he thinks only of his actual resources and the possibilities of various choices of action. He asks of ends only whether they are achievable and worth the cost; of means, only whether they will work. ... The real arena is corrupt and bloody."
"The third rule of ethics of means and ends is that in war the end justifies almost any means...." p.29
"The seventh rule... is that generally success or failure is a mighty determinant of ethics...." p.34
"The tenth rule... is you do what you can with what you have and clothe it with moral garments.... p.36
4. The Education of the Organizer
"...the organizer must be able to split himself into two parts -- one part in the arena of action where he polarizes the issue to 100 to nothing, and helps to lead his forces into conflict, while the other part knows that when the time comes for negotiations that it really is only a 10 percent difference." p.78
5. Communication [Notice the emphasis on conflict, dialogue, relationships, etc. Team "service" is essential to building strong relationships through "common involvements"]
"One of the factors that changes what you can and can't communicate is relationships. There are sensitive areas that one does not touch until there is a strong personal relationship based on common involvements. Otherwise the other party turns off and literally does not hear....
6. In the Beginning: The Process of Power
[Notice the compromise needed to build the power base. Yet, since pragmatism has eroded all values, it's simply a matter of ends justifying means]
"From the moment the organizer enters a community he lives, dreams... only one thing and that is to build the mass power base of what he calls the army. Until he has developed that mass power base, he confronts no major issues.... Until he has those means and power instruments, his 'tactics' are very different from power tactics. Therefore, every move revolves around one central point: how many recruits will this bring into the organization, whether by means of local organizations, churches, service groups, labor Unions, corner gangs, or as individuals."
"Change comes from power, and power comes from organization." p.113
"The first step in community organization is community disorganization. The disruption of the present organization is the first step toward community organization. Present arrangements must be disorganized if they are to be displace by new patterns.... All change means disorganization of the old and organization of the new." p.116
"An organizer must stir up dissatisfaction and discontent... He must create a mechanism that can drain off the underlying guilt for having accepted the previous situation for so long a time. Out of this mechanism, a new community organization arises....
"The job then is getting the people to move, to act, to participate; in short, to develop and harness the necessary power to effectively conflict with the prevailing patterns and change them. p.117
"Process tells us how. Purpose tells us why. But in reality, it is academic to draw a line between them, they are part of a continuum.... Process is really purpose." p.122
"Tactics are those conscious deliberate acts by which human beings live with each other and deal with the world around them. ... Here our concern is with the tactic of taking; how the Have-Nots can take power away from the Haves." p.126
Always remember the first rule of power tactics (pps.127-134):
1. "Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy thinks you have."
2. "Never go outside the expertise of your people. When an action or tactic is outside the experience of the people, the result is confusion, fear and retreat.... [and] the collapse of communication.
3. "Whenever possible, go outside the expertise of the enemy. Look for ways to increase insecurity, anxiety and uncertainty. (This happens all the time. Watch how many organizations under attack are blind-sided by seemingly irrelevant arguments that they are then forced to address.)
4. "Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules. You can kill them with this, for they can no more obey their own rules than the Christian church can live up to Christianity."
5. "Ridicule is man's most potent weapon. It is almost impossible to counteract ridicule. Also it infuriates the opposition, which then reacts to your advantage."
6. "A good tactic is one your people enjoy."
7. "A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag. Man can sustain militant interest in any issue for only a limited time...."
8. "Keep the pressure on, with different tactics and actions, and utilize all events of the period for your purpose."
9. "The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself."
10. "The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition. It is this unceasing pressure that results in the reactions from the opposition that are essential for the success of the campaign."
11. "If you push a negative hard and deep enough, it will break through into its counterside... every positive has its negative."
12. "The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative."
13. Pick the target, freeze it, ersonalize it, and polarize it. In conflict tactics there are certain rules that [should be regarded] as universalities. One is that the opposition must be singled out as the target and 'frozen.'...
"...any target can always say, 'Why do you center on me when there are others to blame as well?' When your 'freeze the target,' you disregard these [rational but distracting] arguments.... Then, as you zero in and freeze your target and carry out your attack, all the 'others' come out of the woodwork very soon. They become visible by their support of the target...'
"One acts decisively only in the conviction that all the angels are on one side and all the devils on the other." (pps.127-134)
Notes from an article by Phyllis Schalfly titled " Alinski's Rules: Must Reading In Obama Era," posted at www.ibdeditorials.com (2-2-09)
"The qualities Alinsky looked for in a good organizer were:
ego ("reaching for the highest level for which man can reach to create, to be a 'great creator,' to play God"),
curiosity (raising "questions that agitate, that break through the accepted pattern"),
irreverence ("nothing is sacred"; the organizer "detests dogma, defies any finite definition of morality"),
imagination ("the fuel for the force that keeps an organizer organizing"),
a sense of humor ("the most potent weapons known to mankind are satire and ridicule"), and an
organized personality with confidence in presenting the right reason for his actions only "as a moral rationalization after the right end has been achieved.'...
"'The organizer's first job is to create the issues or problems,' and 'organizations must be based on many issues.' The organizer 'must first rub raw the resentments of the people of the community; fan the latent hostilities of many of the people to the point of overt expression. He must search out controversy and issues, rather than avoid them, for unless there is controversy people are not concerned enough to act. . . . An organizer must stir up dissatisfaction and discontent.'"
Shouldn’t this “L. DAVID ALINSKY” be receiving some critical coverage by now?...
Is he gay?
A druggie? Pedophile?
Not accusing, just asking. Who is this “L. David Alinsky”. Can he be embarrassed and taken down a peg. For what his father has done - and for which he seems to be just fine about.
Somewhere, Joe Stalin is nodding in agreement.
If we can't make a good case against them on basis that they are, at the core, socialist / Marxist, communist or fascist (commune, communal, community and communism have the same root word commun - to share), then we are hopelessly lost in the fight of ideas and ideological war.
Let's point out, mock and ridicule the fact that what they are trying to peddle to the masses has already been tried and miserably failed every time, everywhere, on every level, in every aspect. Let them defend the already discredited societies and ideologies instead of hiding behind various differently painted but well recycled slogans of Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité type.
Somewhere, Joe Stalin is nodding in agreement.
On the other hand Alinsky did NOT write for the powerful - he wrote for the powerless. Liberals are the Establishment - the Powerful - the Thugs - they have no call on Alinsky...
Or a meal of asparagus beforehand?
An update to this post, please chime in since The Chicago papers are praising Alinsky
BTTT.....(where is CutePuppy?)
Alinsky re the Empty Chair Non Negotiations ..Not taking place in the House...BUMP
God Save Anerica!