Saul Alinsky Rules For Radicals

Macanudo

Registered
Saul David Alinsky (January 30, 1909 – June 12, 1972) was an American community
organizer and writer. He is generally considered to be the founder of modern
community organizing. He is often noted for his book Rules for Radicals.

Here are my notes from Rules for Radicals with page numbers:

XV I want to do something, to create, to be me, to 'do my own thing' to live.
xv111 The flag remains the glorious American symbol of hope and aspiration
32 Men must change with the times or die
30 Judgment must be made in the context of the times in which the action occurred
and not from any other chronological vantage point. Ethical standards must be
elastic to stretch with the times.
32 Concern with ethics increases with the number of means available and vice versa.
36 Do what you can with what you have
67 No situation ever repeats itself, no tactic can be precisely the same.
68 ...there is a strong subconscious block against repudiating two to three years
of life spent in this training, as well as the financial cost of these courses.
One can only communicate and understand in terms of one's experience. Most people do not accumulate a body of experience. Most people go through life undergoing a
series of happenings, which pass through their systems undigested.
69 Life is the expectation of the unexpected...Something new, the unexpected, will
usually come in from outside the ball park.
An organizer can communicate only within the areas of experience of his audience,
70 otherwise there is no communication. The organizer, in his constant hunt for
patterns, universalities, and meaning, is always building up a body of experience.
It is essential for communication that he know of their experience. He learns the
local legends, anecdotes, values, idioms. He listens to small talk. He refrains from rhetoric foreign to the local culture.
The organizer must not try to fake it. He must be himself.
72 Curiosity - Search for patterns, similarities, order in chaos, meaning to life
and its relationships. Find the core question, question the meaning of life, refuse conventional values,
73 Irreverence, detest dogma, reverence for the enigma of life. An incessant search for its meaning. Reverence for others, for their freedom from injustice, poverty,
ignorance, exploitation, discriminations, disease, war, hate, and fear.
74 Imagination Unabridged, imagination in the mental synthesis of new ideas from
elements experienced separately.. The broader meaning... starts with the notion of
mental imaging of things suggested but not previously experienced, and thence
expands.. The basis for tactics and actions. The real action is in the reaction of the opposition. To realistically appraise and anticipate the probable reactions of the enemy, he must be able to identify with them, too, in his imagination, and foresee their reactions to his actions.
74 Sense of humor Life is a tragedy; and the converse of tragedy is comedy. Knowing that contradictions are the signposts of progress he is ever on the alert for
contradictions. A sense of humor helps him identify and make sense out of them.
The most potent weapons to mankind are satire and ridicule. A sense of humor enables him to maintain his perspective and see himself for what he really is: a bit of
dust that burns for a fleeting second.
89 In the arena of action, a threat or a crisis becomes almost a precondition to
communication.
95 Communication on a general basis without being fractured into the specifics of
experience becomes rhetoric and it carries a very limited meaning.
98 Must have an acceptable reason for being there. Get his license to operate.
99 The haves are the authorities and thus the beneficiaries of the various myths and legends that always develop around power.
107 Life is a sea of shifting desires, changing elements, of relativity and
uncertainty, The fear of change is one of our greatest fears
111 Creative fishing 112 Learn to search out rationalizations, treat them as
rationalizations and break through. Do mistake them for the real issues and
problems. 119 An issue is something that you can do something about, but as long as you feel powerless and unable to do something about it all you have is a bad scene.
120 Each person has a hierarchy of desires or values. The word community means
community of interests. People hunger for drama and adventure, for a breath of life in a dreary drab existence. Desperate search for personal identity.
123 The dignity of the individual
126 Tactics means doing what you can with what you have.
First rule of power politics: Power is not only what you have but what the enemy
thinks you have.
Second rule: Never go outside the experience of your people.
Rule three: Whenever possible go outside the experience of your enemy. This will
cause confusion, fear and retreat.
Pick a vulnerable target and freeze it. As you attack it the others will come out of the woods to support the target. Don't target a corporation, target an individual
in charge. All issues must be polarized if action is to follow.

149 Power must grow or die. The power cannibalism of the Haves permits only
temporary truces, and only when equally confronted by a common enemy. Even then
there are regular breaks in the ranks, as individual units attempt to exploit the
general threat for their own special benefit. Here is the vulnerable belly of the status quo.

156 The one problem that the revolutionary cannot cope with by himself is that he
must now and then have an opportunity to reflect and synthesize his thoughts. To
gain that privacy in which he can try to make sense out of what he is doing, why he is doing it, where he is going, what has been wrong with what he has done, what he
should have done, and above all to see the relationships of all the episodes and
acts as they tie in to a general pattern, the most convenient and accessible
solution is jail. It is here that he begins to develop a philosophy. It is here that he begins to shape long-term goals, intermediate goals, and a self-analysis of tactics as tied to his own personality. It is here that he is emancipated from the
slavery of action wherein he was compelled to think from act to act. Now he can look at the totality of his actions and the reactions of the enemy from a fairly detached position.

159 Human beings can sustain an interest in a particular subject only over a limited period of time. The concentration, the emotional fervor, even the physical energy, a particular experience that is exciting, challenging, and inviting, can last just so long--this is true of the gamut of human behavior from sex to conflict. After a
period of time it becomes monotonous, repetitive, an emotional treadmill, and worse than anything else a bore. From the moment the tactician engages in conflict, his enemy is time.
165 Accident, unpredictable reactions to your own actions, necessity, and
improvisation dictate the direction and nature of tactics. Then, analytical logic is required to appraise where you are, what you can do next, the risks and hopes that you can look forward to.
 

ajoknoblauch

Registered
Saul David Alinsky (January 30, 1909 – June 12, 1972) was an American community
organizer and writer. He is generally considered to be the founder of modern
community organizing. He is often noted for his book Rules for Radicals.

Here are my notes from Rules for Radicals with page numbers:

XV I want to do something, to create, to be me, to 'do my own thing' to live.
xv111 The flag remains the glorious American symbol of hope and aspiration
32 Men must change with the times or die
30 Judgment must be made in the context of the times in which the action occurred
and not from any other chronological vantage point. Ethical standards must be
elastic to stretch with the times.
32 Concern with ethics increases with the number of means available and vice versa.
36 Do what you can with what you have
67 No situation ever repeats itself, no tactic can be precisely the same.
68 ...there is a strong subconscious block against repudiating two to three years
of life spent in this training, as well as the financial cost of these courses.
One can only communicate and understand in terms of one's experience. Most people do not accumulate a body of experience. Most people go through life undergoing a
series of happenings, which pass through their systems undigested.
69 Life is the expectation of the unexpected...Something new, the unexpected, will
usually come in from outside the ball park.
An organizer can communicate only within the areas of experience of his audience,
70 otherwise there is no communication. The organizer, in his constant hunt for
patterns, universalities, and meaning, is always building up a body of experience.
It is essential for communication that he know of their experience. He learns the
local legends, anecdotes, values, idioms. He listens to small talk. He refrains from rhetoric foreign to the local culture.
The organizer must not try to fake it. He must be himself.
72 Curiosity - Search for patterns, similarities, order in chaos, meaning to life
and its relationships. Find the core question, question the meaning of life, refuse conventional values,
73 Irreverence, detest dogma, reverence for the enigma of life. An incessant search for its meaning. Reverence for others, for their freedom from injustice, poverty,
ignorance, exploitation, discriminations, disease, war, hate, and fear.
74 Imagination Unabridged, imagination in the mental synthesis of new ideas from
elements experienced separately.. The broader meaning... starts with the notion of
mental imaging of things suggested but not previously experienced, and thence
expands.. The basis for tactics and actions. The real action is in the reaction of the opposition. To realistically appraise and anticipate the probable reactions of the enemy, he must be able to identify with them, too, in his imagination, and foresee their reactions to his actions.
74 Sense of humor Life is a tragedy; and the converse of tragedy is comedy. Knowing that contradictions are the signposts of progress he is ever on the alert for
contradictions. A sense of humor helps him identify and make sense out of them.
The most potent weapons to mankind are satire and ridicule. A sense of humor enables him to maintain his perspective and see himself for what he really is: a bit of
dust that burns for a fleeting second.
89 In the arena of action, a threat or a crisis becomes almost a precondition to
communication.
95 Communication on a general basis without being fractured into the specifics of
experience becomes rhetoric and it carries a very limited meaning.
98 Must have an acceptable reason for being there. Get his license to operate.
99 The haves are the authorities and thus the beneficiaries of the various myths and legends that always develop around power.
107 Life is a sea of shifting desires, changing elements, of relativity and
uncertainty, The fear of change is one of our greatest fears
111 Creative fishing 112 Learn to search out rationalizations, treat them as
rationalizations and break through. Do mistake them for the real issues and
problems. 119 An issue is something that you can do something about, but as long as you feel powerless and unable to do something about it all you have is a bad scene.
120 Each person has a hierarchy of desires or values. The word community means
community of interests. People hunger for drama and adventure, for a breath of life in a dreary drab existence. Desperate search for personal identity.
123 The dignity of the individual
126 Tactics means doing what you can with what you have.
First rule of power politics: Power is not only what you have but what the enemy
thinks you have.
Second rule: Never go outside the experience of your people.
Rule three: Whenever possible go outside the experience of your enemy. This will
cause confusion, fear and retreat.
Pick a vulnerable target and freeze it. As you attack it the others will come out of the woods to support the target. Don't target a corporation, target an individual
in charge. All issues must be polarized if action is to follow.

149 Power must grow or die. The power cannibalism of the Haves permits only
temporary truces, and only when equally confronted by a common enemy. Even then
there are regular breaks in the ranks, as individual units attempt to exploit the
general threat for their own special benefit. Here is the vulnerable belly of the status quo.

156 The one problem that the revolutionary cannot cope with by himself is that he
must now and then have an opportunity to reflect and synthesize his thoughts. To
gain that privacy in which he can try to make sense out of what he is doing, why he is doing it, where he is going, what has been wrong with what he has done, what he
should have done, and above all to see the relationships of all the episodes and
acts as they tie in to a general pattern, the most convenient and accessible
solution is jail. It is here that he begins to develop a philosophy. It is here that he begins to shape long-term goals, intermediate goals, and a self-analysis of tactics as tied to his own personality. It is here that he is emancipated from the
slavery of action wherein he was compelled to think from act to act. Now he can look at the totality of his actions and the reactions of the enemy from a fairly detached position.

159 Human beings can sustain an interest in a particular subject only over a limited period of time. The concentration, the emotional fervor, even the physical energy, a particular experience that is exciting, challenging, and inviting, can last just so long--this is true of the gamut of human behavior from sex to conflict. After a
period of time it becomes monotonous, repetitive, an emotional treadmill, and worse than anything else a bore. From the moment the tactician engages in conflict, his enemy is time.
165 Accident, unpredictable reactions to your own actions, necessity, and
improvisation dictate the direction and nature of tactics. Then, analytical logic is required to appraise where you are, what you can do next, the risks and hopes that you can look forward to.
I've never seen this before, and just skimmed it, but it seems to contain many admirable principles. Obviously, not things that the Hermit of the Pampas would permit in his bunker.
 

Joe

Registered
This is obviously not either one of the feuders bible because of this Rule:

[background=rgb(252, 252, 252)]159 Human beings can sustain an interest in a particular subject only over a limited period of time. The concentration, the emotional fervor, even the physical energy, a particular experience that is exciting, challenging, and inviting, can last just so long--this is true of the gamut of human behavior from sex to conflict. After a [/background][background=rgb(252, 252, 252)]period of time it becomes monotonous, repetitive, an emotional treadmill, and worse than anything else a bore. From the moment the tactician engages in conflict, his enemy is time.[/background]
 

Macanudo

Registered
This is obviously not either one of the feuders bible because of this Rule.

Hey Joe, Feuders Bible might be a good title for a book.
 

Macanudo

Registered
Look braddah Matt, let's say you and your homies like rap music. Don't suggest putting together a Polka
band and quitting your day jobs. Stick with what you know. You hear what I'm saying?
 

nkotb

Registered
You're a little late to the party, Macanudo. Left wingers have been (mis)quoting this book (along with the similarly overrated Venas Abiertas de America Latina) at parties for 20-30 years. It was also in the news in 2008 for allegedly influencing young Obama.
 

steveinbsas

Registered
You're a little late to the party, Macanudo. Left wingers have been (mis)quoting this book (along with the similarly overrated Venas Abiertas de America Latina) at parties for 20-30 years. It was also in the news in 2008 for allegedly influencing young Obama.
The following quotes are from an article that was published in the Washington Post that indicates the "young Obama" actually taught the "Alinsky method" as a community organizer in Chicago, and that Alinsky provided a "common ideological touchstone" for both Barack Obama and Hillary Rodam (Clinton) who wrote her Wellesley Honors thesis about him.

During the 2007 campaign, "neither candidate would agree to be interviewed about Alinsky. But Marian Wright Edelman, the Children's Defense Fund leader, who knows Obama, worked closely with Clinton and spoke at Alinsky's funeral, said the organizer's allure was formidable, particularly in the energized 1960s. \

"He was brilliant. He was working for underdogs. He was trying to empower communities, which we still need to do. He spoke plainly. He had his outrageous side, but he also had his pragmatic side," Edelman said. "Both Hillary and Barack reflect that understanding of community-organizing strategy. Both just know how to leverage power."

http://www.washingto...7032401152.html

 

Macanudo

Registered
The Right loves to hate - and imitate - Saul Alinsky

Conservatives just can’t seem to make up their mind about Saul Alinsky.

Was he a tactical genius to be imitated, an agitator whose teachings will undercut the right’s goals, a devil-worshiper leading young conservatives down the path to damnation, or some combination of all three? The modern right harbors an “almost schizophrenic view of what they can use and learn from Alinsky, and yet he is this totally evil guy,” said Sanford D. Horwitt, author of “Let Them Call Me Rebel,” a biography of Alinsky.

And the debate among conservatives, most of whom had never heard of Alinsky until recently, is only picking up steam nearly four decades after his death in 1972.

Often described as the father of modern community organizing, Alinsky helped poor and working class urban communities around the country push for improved living and working conditions by confronting, satirizing or negotiating with the establishment, as well as by building diverse coalitions including small businesses, labor unions and religious groups, such as the Roman Catholic Church.

He’s long been a hero on the left, but the right’s fascination with him dates to the 2008 presidential campaign, when lots of attention was paid to Alinsky’s impact on leading Democratic contenders Hillary Clinton, who wrote her college thesis about him, and Barack Obama, who trained in — and utilized — his community organizing techniques.

Alinsky strictly resisted political labels and affiliations, once explaining “if you think you've got an inside track to absolute truth, you become doctrinaire, humorless and intellectually constipated.” But conservatives began invoking his name as something of an epithet to sully the left’s tactics as sneaky, underhanded, unethical — or Marxist.

But a funny thing happened on the way to Alinsky taking a place alongside top contemporary conservative bogeymen like Michael Moore, George Soros and Jane Fonda. His seminal 1971 guide to organizing, “Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals,” became a must-read for a new wave of conservative activists who mobilized — many for the first time — in opposition to the ambitious, big-government agenda pushed by President Obama and the Democratic Congress.

In the opening lines of “Rules,” Alinsky described its mission — and his approach — thus: “What follows is for those who want to change the world from what it is to what they believe it should be. 'The Prince' was written by Machiavelli for the Haves on how to hold power. 'Rules for Radicals' is written for the Have-Nots on how to take it away."


Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0310/34751.html#ixzz3htW66Q3x



Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0310/34751.html#ixzz3htVvVXN8
 
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