Author Topic: Alinski's Rules  (Read 752 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline radioman

  • A Regular
  • ***
  • Posts: 620
Alinski's Rules
« on: March 08, 2011, 12:06:00 AM »
I know that many of us have read Saul Alinski's "Rules for Radicals", but there may still be a lot of us that have never read the book, so it would be good to post a Cliff-Notes version of what's in his book, as we need to know who our enemy is, and how they operate.

His book's dedication:

"Lest we forget at least an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical: from all our legends, mythology, and history (and who is to know where mythology leaves off and history begins -- or which is which), the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom -- Lucifer."

Some of these rules are ruthless, but they work. Here are the rules to be aware of:

RULE 1: "Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy thinks you have." Power is derived from 2 main sources - money and people. "Have-Nots" must build power from flesh and blood. (These are two things of which there is a plentiful supply. Government and corporations always have a difficult time appealing to people, and usually do so almost exclusively with economic arguments.)

RULE 2: "Never go outside the expertise of your people." It results in confusion, fear and retreat. Feeling secure adds to the backbone of anyone. (Organizations under attack wonder why radicals don't address the "real" issues. This is why. They avoid things with which they have no knowledge.)

RULE 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.)

RULE 4: "Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules." If the rule is that every letter gets a reply, send 30,000 letters. You can kill them with this because no one can possibly obey all of their own rules. (This is a serious rule. The besieged entity's very credibility and reputation is at stake, because if activists catch it lying or not living up to its commitments, they can continue to chip away at the damage.)

RULE 5: "Ridicule is man's most potent weapon." There is no defense. It's irrational. It's infuriating. It also works as a key pressure point to force the enemy into concessions. (Pretty crude, rude and mean, huh? They want to create anger and fear.)

RULE 6: "A good tactic is one your people enjoy." They'll keep doing it without urging and come back to do more. They're doing their thing, and will even suggest better ones. (Radical activists, in this sense, are no different that any other human being. We all avoid "un-fun" activities, and but we revel at and enjoy the ones that work and bring results.)

RULE 7: "A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag." Don't become old news. (Even radical activists get bored. So to keep them excited and involved, organizers are constantly coming up with new tactics.)

RULE 8: "Keep the pressure on. Never let up." Keep trying new things to keep the opposition off balance. As the opposition masters one approach, hit them from the flank with something new. (Attack, attack, attack from all sides, never giving the reeling organization a chance to rest, regroup, recover and re-strategize.)

RULE 9: "The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself." Imagination and ego can dream up many more consequences than any activist. (Perception is reality. Large organizations always prepare a worst-case scenario, something that may be furthest from the activists' minds. The upshot is that the organization will expend enormous time and energy, creating in its own collective mind the direst of conclusions. The possibilities can easily poison the mind and result in demoralization.)

RULE 10: "If you push a negative hard enough, it will push through and become a positive." Violence from the other side can win the public to your side because the public sympathizes with the underdog. (Unions used this tactic. Peaceful [albeit loud] demonstrations during the heyday of unions in the early to mid-20th Century incurred management's wrath, often in the form of violence that eventually brought public sympathy to their side.)

RULE 11: "The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative." Never let the enemy score points because you're caught without a solution to the problem. (Old saw: If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the problem. Activist organizations have an agenda, and their strategy is to hold a place at the table, to be given a forum to wield their power. So, they have to have a compromise solution.)

RULE 12: Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it." Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions. (This is cruel, but very effective. Direct, personalized criticism and ridicule works.)

Short version:

1. Never go outside the experience of your people

2. Wherever possible, go outside the experience of the enemy

3. Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.

4. A good tactic is one that your people enjoy.

5. A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag

6. Keep the pressure on

7. The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition.

8. Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.

9. Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.
TGIF - "Thank God I'm Forgiven"

Online IronDioPriest

  • Administrator
  • Conservative Superhero
  • *****
  • Posts: 10552
  • I refuse to accept my civil servants as my rulers
Re: Alinski's Rules
« Reply #1 on: March 08, 2011, 12:55:54 AM »
There is little about the tactics of the Left that does not come directly from this evil template.
"A strict observance of the written laws is doubtless one of the high duties of a good citizen, but it is not the highest. The laws of necessity, of self-preservation, of saving our country when in danger, are of higher obligation. To lose our country by a scrupulous adherence to written law, would be to lose the law itself, with life, liberty, property and all those who are enjoying them with us; thus absurdly sacrificing the end to the means."

- Thomas Jefferson

Offline Libertas

  • Conservative Superhero
  • *****
  • Posts: 44395
  • Alea iacta est! Libertatem aut mori!
Re: Alinski's Rules
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2011, 07:02:46 AM »
Well, when you dedicate your radical leftist guidebook to Lucifer, it's not like you can easily outrun being tagged as evil, and IMHO it is entirely deserved!

So screw Alinski, his pal Lucifer, and the rest of their demonic horde!

 ::overkill::
Irrumabo!  GOP? - Nope. No more. They made their bed, now let them die in it.*
* © Libertas (H/T Glock32)

Offline radioman

  • A Regular
  • ***
  • Posts: 620
Re: Alinski's Rules
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2011, 08:17:48 AM »
There is little about the tactics of the Left that does not come directly from this evil template.

You can add to this template the Cloward-Piven Strategy and you will have 90% of their entire playbook.
TGIF - "Thank God I'm Forgiven"

Offline BigAlSouth

  • Established Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1564
  • Who won't 'co-exist?'
Re: Alinski's Rules
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2011, 03:28:03 PM »
Rule 5 works both ways. Two can play the ridicule game.
The problems we face today are there because the people who work for a living
are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.
--------------
The enemy of my enemy is my friend; the friend of my enemy is, well, he is just a dumbass.

Offline Roy Rogers

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 173
  • When in doubt, empty the magazine.
Re: Alinski's Rules
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2011, 04:47:31 PM »
Alinsky... you magnificent bastard, I read your book!

If the Army and the Navy ever look on Heaven's scenes,
They will find the gates are guarded by United States Marines.

Offline BigAlSouth

  • Established Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1564
  • Who won't 'co-exist?'
Re: Alinski's Rules
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2011, 06:47:33 AM »
Alinsky... you magnificent bastard, I read your book!



My Gawd. The kid is a Carolina Hurricanes Fan! It's a Two-fer!
Woot Woot
The problems we face today are there because the people who work for a living
are outnumbered by those who vote for a living.
--------------
The enemy of my enemy is my friend; the friend of my enemy is, well, he is just a dumbass.