THE COMMUNITY-ORGANIZER-IN-CHIEF, PART ONE: THE ALINSKY ETHICS
by LEE STRANAHAN 31 Jul 2012 39
“A radical is one who advocates sweeping changes in the existing laws and methods of government.”
– Hillary Rodham (Clinton) in her 1969 thesis “There Is Only The Fight : An Analysis of the Alinsky Model”
As voters stagger through the long hot summer of the 2012 Presidential campaign, activists who want to defeat President Obama are fighting an uphill battle to help their fellow citizens get an honest assessment of who Barack Obama is and what he believes. The mainstream media are certainly no help in vetting Obama, having proven themselves both as slippery and as shallow as a puddle of bacon grease.
Obama’s past matters because it isn’t just his past. As author Stanley Kurtz shows in his upcoming book Spreading the Wealth: How Obama is Robbing the Suburbs to Pay for the Cities, the President’s background past is relevant today because it leads directly to his wealth redistribution policies and other radical plans to reshape America.
Because of the Fourth Estate Fail, it’s incumbent on conservative activists and citizen journalists to do the job of explaining to voters the truth about Barack Obama. This article is the first in a series that uses Kurtz’s Spreading The Wealth as a jumping off point to lay out in stark detail how President Obama has practiced distinct brand of Chicago-style politics has had implications for every aspect of his policy, from Obamacare to the housing crisis.
The plain truth is that President Barack Obama has operated in a manner completely consistent with his political roots as a Alinsky-style community organizer. That simple assessment is accurate but useless as an explanation. Most voters have no idea who Saul Alinsky was or even what being a “community organizer” means. Ironically, this ignorance is especially acute among liberals.
The good news is that understanding Alinsky and his profound impact on Obama’s policies & political operation can be simple.
Alinsky’s manifesto Rules For Radicals lays out the principles of community organizing and the blunt, modern language makes it an easy read. Yes, it’s evil–but it’s seldom pedantic.
However, I think an even better place to start is the astounding, in-depth interview that Playboy magazine did with Alinsky in 1972. The entire interview at the link is from a political website and there isn’t a NSFW photo anywhere.
The Playboy interview serves as an excellent introduction to Alinksky. There’s a Greek saying that you cannot truly judge a man until he’s dead. By that standard, the interview is a great way to judge Alinsky because it was conducted literally just a few months before he passed, and he tells you as plain as day what he believes and who he is.
One thing that’s clear from the interview is that Alinsky was neither an idealist nor an ideologue. This is also an important revelation about Barack Obama; despite all the talk about the morality of social justice, it’s just a whitewash for turning the engine of government into what amounts to a money skimming operation, and gaining power for the sake of power.
The connections between Barack Obama and the methods of Saul Alinsky are clear and well established. The two men never met, of course, but when he arrived in Chicago Obama was trained as a community organizer by people like Michael Kruglik–one of the key figures in Spreading The Wealth–whose online bio says:
(Micheal Kruglik) has been developing grass-roots citizens’ power organizations since 1973 with the (Alinsky founded) Industrial Areas Foundation, the Gamaliel Foundation and Building One America.
From 1984 to 1998, (Kruglik) was co-director of the Calumet Community Religious Conference, the community organization that recruited and hired Barack Obama as a community organizer. Mr. Kruglik’s role as Barack Obama’s mentor has been chronicled in a number of works of history and periodicals.
What did Obama learn from Alinsky? The New Republic said:
The first and most fundamental lesson Obama learned was to reassess his understanding of power. (Another Obama mentor) says that, when Alinsky would ask new students why they wanted to organize, they would invariably respond with selfless bromides about wanting to help others. Alinsky would then scream back at them that there was a one-word answer: “You want to organize for power!”
Obama so mastered the workshops on power that he later taught them himself. On his (2007) campaign website, one can find a photo of Obama in a classroom teaching students Alinskian methods. He stands in front of a blackboard on which he has written, “Power Analysis” and “Relationships Built on Self Interest,” an idea illustrated by a diagram of the flow of money from corporations to the mayor.