Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Alinsky's Rules for Radicals

The fifth video exposing even more corruption in the political activist organization ACORN surfaced yesterday. They can be seen at Biggovernment.com.

The fifth video is the same story of ACORN helping a man who passes himself off as an aspiring politician who needs advice on channeling money from his underage prostitution ring into his future political campaign, and a prostitute.

At Big Government however James Okeefe, the undercover journalist in these stories, quotes from the book, "Rules for Radicals" by Saul D. Alinsky (1909-1972), a mid twentieth century leftist activist. This is becoming an increasingly well known political play book that the left, through organizations such as ACORN, have been using against other organizations for years. Okeefe is now using the left's own tactics to infiltrate their organizations.

According to Richard Lawrence Poe "In a 1971 book called Rules for Radicals, Alinsky scolded the Sixties Left for scaring off potential converts in Middle America. True revolutionaries do not flaunt their radicalism, Alinsky taught. They cut their hair, put on suits and infiltrate the system from within. Alinsky viewed revolution as a slow, patient process. The trick was to penetrate existing institutions such as churches, unions and political parties. "

We see this today as churches, unions, the Democratic, and to some degree, the Republican party; not to mention institutions of higher learning and the government education system, have to a varying degrees, become tools in the hands of those with a socialist agenda.
As always these agendas wrap themselves in terminology that is familiar to the institution being co-opted. Whether it is Christianese, helping the poor, doing what is moral and right-what ever that means, civil liberties, or social justice, the end game is always the same, the imposition of a socialist worldview with the one true God replaced by the Man/State as the final arbiter on all things.

If you haven't seen Ainsky's rules, they are listed as follows:

RULE1: "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.)

As Christians we are to be wise as serpents. Not everyone coming in the name of the Lord is in fact from our Savior. We should warn young ones (young in spirit) of the enticing and good sounding arguments of those who, on the outside appear as sheep, but who are on the inside ravenous wolves. This is one of the reasons that the issue of abortion is far wider in scope than the systematic killing of the unborn, it is also one indicator of whether a person serves his Father in heaven, or his father the "murderer from the beginning".

21 comments:

Dan Trabue said...

I wonder, what in this list of rules do you find objectionable? Or do you not find them objectionable at all?

These rules are ways of obtaining just ends without resorting to using violence and without having to use great deals of money. They are ideal tools for working for justice without being sucked into the Money, Power and Violence solutions of the world.

Can these rules be used for bad ends? Sure, as guns and bombs and other tools can be used for bad ends. But that does not make the rules themselves bad, does it?

Dan Trabue said...

re: your abortion comment: Is it the case that you think that someone can't have a different opinion about abortion than you or your church and still be a Christian?

Even though abortion isn't even mentioned in the Bible?

Do you think there are other sins that identify people as not being Christians?

My faith tradition (anabaptist - Amish, Mennonites, etc) does not believe in Christians engaging in war-making or torture, as they are contrary to the teachings of our Lord to love our enemies. Do you think that if one engages in war-making or torture that I ought to conclude they are not a Christian?

Stan said...

Dan Trabue: "Is it the case that you think that someone can't have a different opinion about abortion than you or your church and still be a Christian?"

No, Dan, it's that those who have a different opinion (on abortion) are wrong. The question, then, is "Why?" Depending on that answer ...

Dan Trabue said...

Okay, Stan, so the anabaptists think you are wrong on war and maybe even torture ! (presuming you think it is something Christians can engage in), so, WHY are you not opposed to war and/or torture?

If you give the "wrong" answer to that question, should I presume that you are not a Christian?

And what is the "wrong" answer to the abortion "Why?" question, from your point of view?

My answer is that I don't know that abortion is a sin. I do know that it is a horrible position to be put in (considering whether or not to end the life of your gestating child) and I can't imagine any reasons other than health of the mother or health of the child for engaging in an abortion, but because end of life issues are so personal, it ought to be decided by the individuals involved and their families, not by the gov't. So, that would be my answer as to why I don't want to criminalize abortion.

Does that make me not a Christian? On what possible grounds?

Bryan said...

"As Christians we are to be wise as serpents. Not everyone coming in the name of the Lord is in fact from our Savior."

Amen. Alert and tightly coiled in truth, ready to strike against approaching falsity.

Dan said...

Dan said...

"Even though abortion isn't even mentioned in the Bible?"

Let me try and follow your logic Dan.

Abortion not in Bible, so it's ok.

Homosexual behavior in Bible and called sin. But it really means the opposite.

Conclusion: It really doesn't matter much what the Bible says, does it?

Now a question for you:

How are you going to accuse "Bush of torture" in your response? You've hit two out of three so far. Why not go for three out of four?

Dan Trabue said...

Brother Dan, I would appreciate it if you would not be sarcastic and incorrectly characterize my position. I thought we agreed that smearing and taking jabs was not something we want to engage in. Fair enough?

You said...

Abortion not in Bible, so it's ok.

I did not say that because a behavior is not in the Bible, it's okay. I merely was pointing out that what you said was an "indicator" of Christianity is a behavior that is not mentioned in the Bible.

Dan said...

Homosexual behavior in Bible and called sin. But it really means the opposite.

SOME homosexual and heterosexual behaviors in the Bible are called sins. Not ALL. Nowhere in the Bible does it condemn all homosexual behavior. Nowhere in the Bible does it condemn gay marriage.

Again, a behavior's absence in the Bible is not an indicator that the behavior is not a sin, but neither does a handful of vague references to a behavior in certain instances (pagan worship, rape) indicate that ALL such behavior is a sin.

Conclusion: It really doesn't matter much what the Bible says, does it?

This is not my position. Is it yours?

Can we be adult about this and stick to what the other person ACTUALLY believes rather than making up strawmen? I'd appreciate it.

Dan Trabue said...

Now that we have dealt with what I HAVEN'T said, I would be curious as to some answers to what I HAVE asked.

Do you think these rules are out and out wrong?

Is it the case that you think that someone can't have a different opinion about abortion than you or your church and still be a Christian?

You asked me...

How are you going to accuse "Bush of torture" in your response? You've hit two out of three so far. Why not go for three out of four?

I'm sorry, but you'll have to explain what you're even asking here, I'm not understanding your question - two out of three WHAT?

The Bush administration appears to have engaged in torturing of people, do you not think that's true? Do you not think that making people feel like their drowning is torture?

Or is it the case that torture is okay as long as it produces "good intelligence" - ie, the ends justify the means?

Dan Trabue said...

Dan, I should point out that I am always glad to quit commenting at a blog if someone does not wish for me to comment.

I know for many Christians, to have other Christians disagree with your positions (especially on hot topic points like abortion and gay marriage), it makes them miserable and upset and they don't really want to have that kind of discussion. So, if you do not wish me here, at any point, all you have to do is say so. I don't want to wear out my welcome, but I DO like to have conversations with those with whom I sometimes disagree.

Joe said...

Being a Christian is not measured by which sins you have committed and which sins you have not committed. Sin is missing the perfect mark set before us by God, and according to the Bible, all of us are guilty...period.

Being a Christian is about a relationship with God as a result of a personal trust in the finished work of Christ at the cross of Calvary.

Without that, no matter what you do or don't do, you are not a Christian.

The first six chapter of Romans is very clear: God abhors ALL sin, the Law can't save you, following Jewish cerimonial standards can't save you and only Christ can.

Dan Trabue: You must have missed this part of the post: "Okeefe is now using the left's own tactics to infiltrate their organizations."

Steve said...

Amen, Joe!

Dan Trabue said...

Joe said...

Being a Christian is about a relationship with God as a result of a personal trust in the finished work of Christ at the cross of Calvary.

Without that, no matter what you do or don't do, you are not a Christian.


Indeed, Amen!

As to Alinsky, that was all I was asking for, a clarification. Are you suggesting that these tools might be good tools, if the cause is right?

Dan Trabue said...

Joe said...

Being a Christian is about a relationship with God as a result of a personal trust in the finished work of Christ at the cross of Calvary.

And again, indeed. This is why I asked Dan if it were necessary (in his opinion) to agree with Dan and his church on the sin nature of abortion in order to be a Christian?

If someone is indeed in a personal relationship with Christ, saved by God's grace through our Lord Jesus Christ, and disagrees with Dan, or Joe, or Stan on a given sin, is that sin an "indicator" that they're not a Christian?

My point of view is that Christians of good faith can disagree with one another on individual sins, it happens all the time. And my further opinion is that we would do well, then, not to begin calling them "christians" in scare quotes or "so-called Christians," etc, merely because we disagree on this sin or that sin is inappropriate and lacking in grace.

That same grace by which we are saved. Amen?

Dan said...

Your concern should not be with "my opinion" but God's truth as revealed in His Word, which you distort.

I reminded Chritians at the end of this post what God says, that there are wolves in sheep's chothing, which is what I discern you to be, (hint, I'm not your brother) who distort God's truth, like Satan does. I said that "ONE INDICATION" of this is the fact that they follow their father, Satan, who Jesus says was a muderer from the begining, in defending a person's so called "right" to muder people who exist inside the womb.

Hmmmm. Now I'm wondering how you are going to pull off a responce to this and include your customary false accusation of Bush engaging in torture while defending laws, and your brothers who write them, which legalize real torture such as the brutal murder of the unborn while denying anesthetic.

Dan Trabue said...

He drew a circle that shut me out
Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout
But love and I had the wit to win;
We drew a circle that took him in.


~Edwin Markham

Your are correct, Dan, that I ought to be concerned about God's will and opinion, not yours. And I AM concerned about God's will.

But whether you accept me as a brother or not, I am, in fact, your brother in Christ. So, as your brother - and as a brother whom you appear to not understand or trust - I find great value in having conversations to help better understand one another.

So, where you say...

that there are wolves in sheep's chothing, which is what I discern you to be...

What does that mean to you? That you think I am a wolf in sheep's clothing? Does it mean that you think that I, and people like me - who are Christians saved by God's grace through faith in Jesus - are NOT Christians? If so, why?

Because we disagree with your opinion on a sin? That's what it sounds like you are saying, but feel free to clarify.

If you reject me as a brother merely because I have a different opinion than you do on a sin (or a few sins, perhaps), what biblical basis would you have for that?

Is it your opinion that someone must be "right" on every sin in order to be a Christian?

I sort of doubt that (otherwise, I'm sure you wouldn't consider yourself to be saved, since none of us is always right), but if not, what are you saying?

If you truly think I am an unbeliever, then this is your chance to reach out to the lost and offer God's salvation by your actions and by your words.

Dan Trabue said...

Dan wrote:

Now I'm wondering how you are going to pull off a responce to this and include your customary false accusation of Bush engaging in torture while defending laws

If you are going to accuse a brother of false accusations, it would behoove you to do so in a private email or, at least, to provide evidence of your accusation. WHAT false accusation did I make? The Bush administration DID authorize waterboarding. They DID authorize various other methods that seem to me (and I think any unbiased observer) to fit the definition of torture.

If you are going to make accusations, don't you think you ought to provide support for your accusations?

Dan Trabue said...

Dan said...

Your concern should not be with "my opinion" but God's truth as revealed in His Word, which you distort.

I'm sorry, one more question.

You have suggested here that I have distorted God's word. That is a pretty serious allegation, would you do the right thing and educate me as to where I have distorted God's Word?

I am pretty sure that I have not done such a thing here, at least not on purpose.

Now, could I have made a mistake on interpreting God's word? Well, sure. Just like you could have at some point. In fact, I am certain that I have wrongly interpreted God's Word at some point, in ignorance.

But surely we can all have some grace for one another as flawed human beings and not presume any evil intent on others who may sometimes get a Bible theme or idea wrong, yes?

We are a people of Love and Grace, within God's body, a people that can be "completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love."

By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. ~Jesus

Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. ~Paul

I myself am convinced, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, complete in knowledge and competent to instruct one another. ~Paul

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. ~John

Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. ~Peter

Don't grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged. ~James

For those who are not against us are for us. ~Jesus


Amen.

Dan said...

Thank you Dan for admitting that what, in your unbiased opinion you call torture, is actually water boarding which is controversial yes, but torture? No.

Dan said:
That is a pretty serious allegation, would you do the right thing and educate me as to where I have distorted God's Word?

That is a fair question. This is a distortion:

You said: "SOME homosexual and heterosexual behaviors in the Bible are called sins. Not ALL. Nowhere in the Bible does it condemn all homosexual behavior. Nowhere in the Bible does it condemn gay marriage."


But I've seen your arguments with Stan and in my opinion, he successfully refuted your many distortions with sound doctrinal agruments. I do not have the time, or the desire, or perhaps I dare say it, the ability, to rehash them with you as he did. (I have seen blogs other than Stan’s with over a hundred comments on one post. Upon veiwing them I learn that perhaps three quarters of them are yours; with your interminable arguments that have nothing to do with the posts but seem only to be venues for you to accuse Bush of Torture. If any other reader would like for me to prove this, please let me know. Dan knows it’s true) Suffice it to say however, that I agree with Stan: that God is able to superintend His word through all the ages and the attempted distortions of those ages, and he will guide it through this age as well. Of course you are free to think my view of what the Bible says is distorted as well. At the very least logic would seem to me to demand that at least one of us has and teaches a distorted view, which might suggest that it would have been better said “your view is distorted” as opposed to “you distort”.

Dan said...

One more thing.

I still insist however that I am not your brother in the Lord. If I am your brother in the Lord then I think I’m serving the wrong Lord because you serve a Lord, evidently, who thinks that this, this,
this,
this,
this,
this,
this,
this,
this,
this,
this,
this,
this and
this are OK.

Dan, if you have something to say that is challenging or constructive I’ll post your comments. Otherwise I’d sure appreciate it if you’d go find someone else with which to argue. Thanks, and I’ll be praying for you. If fact I'm going to do that right now.

Dan Trabue said...

if you have something to say that is challenging or constructive I’ll post your comments. Otherwise I’d sure appreciate it if you’d go find someone else with which to argue.

I thought my questions to you (only questions, really - no arguing) WERE challenging and constructive (they have gone mostly unanswered, I took that to mean that you were not able to provide any substantive answers).

Do you disagree?

I mean, you quoted Alinsky and I asked if you thought those were good rules or not - is that not a reasonable question?

And then you suggested that I was a "wolf in sheep's clothing," and I asked what you meant by that and some other follow up questions. Those all seem to me to be reasonable and substantive to your charge. Do you disagree?

You suggested that waterboarding was not torture, I disagree. How is that not substantive and to the point of your question to me? Can you imagine Jesus waterboarding an enemy? Feeling in such pain that you think you're about to die from drowning - that's not torture?

The torture question came up because you were suggesting that those who disagree with you on abortion may not be Christians. I was just asking you if you thought other behaviors, like supporting torture or war, were "indicators" that someone was not a Christian? How is that not substantive?

All of my questions seem reasonable to me and it seems to me that you have only addressed my questions by suggesting I'm not a Christian, to which I asked, On what basis? Which went unanswered.

That is a pretty serious thing to say about a brother in Christ. One who has been saved by God's grace, through faith in Jesus, who has repented of his sins and made Jesus the Lord of his life.

If these are not what makes one a Christian, what additional steps would you have me take to be a Christian?

But, if you wish for me to go away, I shall. May God bless you and may God grant us all wisdom as we seek to follow in the steps of our Lord, Jesus Christ.

I am sorry if you feel these questions have been unsubstantive or argumentative. They were not offered in that spirit.

Peace.

Dan said...

You are right I did not answer this question. Joe answered in mostly the same way I would have and that seemed to provide the clarification you were looking for so I thought that was enough. Would you like for me to say more concerning my thoughts on that matter?