“Rules for Radicals,” or, “How to Make a Nuisance of Yourself”

Some of the scrappier members of the Right in America have talked up Rules for Radicals, a decrepit book by the decrepit Saul Alinsky. However, Rules for Radicals is of no help to a healthy, normal citizen.

Alinsky’s whole goal with the book, as he stated, was to show the “have-nots” how to take power from the “haves.” In short, how the “out” members of society could get “in” by using the system against itself. Method was to use the system’s rules against itself.

An example? The “fart-in.” Much like a sit-in, only it has a nauseous smell. The idea, of course, is that the “fart-in” people are doing something disgusting, which at the same time is not strictly against the rules. What deliberative committee has rules against farting? As such, they assail the senses of the committeemen without actually breaking the rules. And since committee-types tend to be dominated by the rules, they think they can do nothing unless it’s laid out in the rules. As such, the most they can do is sanctimoniously lecture the “fart-in” people about being childish.

The list continues, and is in fact almost endless. What the Alinskyites do is use any establishment rule against itself. Since those rules are almost endless, the tactics for attacking the establishment are almost endless.

Abusing the rules is not new. For instance, the filibuster is just an abuse of parliamentary procedure. Since generally speaking a member of a parliament or congress can’t be kept from talking, he can stop the entire body from deliberating by just keeping talking. It’s an abuse of the rules. But it’s one that deliberative bodies have found to be frequently healthy. And so it remains.

Winston Churchill can furnish another example, though a less healthy one parliamentarily speaking.

The British House of Commons was to vote on a bill to allow a man to marry the sister of his deceased wife. A friend of Churchill’s, Hugh Cecil, who was also a member of the Commons, convinced Churchill that this was a bad idea. The reasons aren’t important to this example.

Now, they were outnumbered on the bill, and it would have passed even if they voted against it. If they had simply stayed away from the Commons, the vote would have taken place without them and they would have lost. So here’s what they did instead: they entered the House of Commons, and proceeded to crawl to where their vote would be recorded. Their crawl speed was not enough to beat the clock, and so the time to vote expired, and the bill was shelved. Needless to say, such abuse of the rules brought ridicule on both of them. But it brought no lasting harm to their reputations.

Alinsky and Co. go much farther, as noted above. They are fringe types. Many of them are political desperadoes. That is, they have no place in politics and they know it. As such, the exercise of power, no matter how decrepit or disgusting, is enough for them.*

The whole point of Alinsky’s tactics is to give power to people who have no right to wield it. They are generally incompetent, decrepit, and stupid. As such, his tactics fit them accordingly. There is nothing constructive about “Rules for Radicals.” There is nothing useful for society. There is nothing healthy about it. As such, it’s entirely unfit for anyone that wants to build up civilization. Anyone that wants to conserve his nation, his people, will find nothing useful in Alinsky. He was a freak and an outcast. The only difference was he was an outcast with intelligence. As such, he had the ability to get much of what he wanted, instead of just whining about it, like many fringe types do.

That is why he dedicated his book to Satan: he was signalling his utter psychological separation from what was normal. Satan is the ultimate outcast: he began the rebellion against God, and is the figure-head of evil. In such company, Alinsky did not feel himself out-of-place. He had no desire for respect at all. He hadn’t the least care for what people thought of him. And being an outcast, and an intelligent one at that, he was willing to use any tactic short of criminality to get power. And that’s only because you can’t have power locked between three concrete walls and a set of bars.

And that is what his followers and devotees want: power. That, incidentally, is why they have no idea what to do once they finally get power. Having no goals other than power, the attainment of it leaves them goalless. Thus they founder and vacillate.

And so, to return to my starting point: Rules for Radicals is of no help to patriotic, healthy, normal people. It’s only a rule book for social outcasts who can’t get respect, and who want power exclusively.



* Some people convince themselves that they are desperadoes in order to use Alinsky’s tactics. These people are neither intelligent nor brave. But they still want to be respected and have power. Lacking intelligence and courage, they can’t work within the present system to get what they want. As such, they convince themselves that they are really on the outside. They identify with fringe groups. They talk, plan, and philosophize with fringe groups. In short, they try to make themselves into fringe types. Having done so, they become hardened to the shame of their former social class. That is the whole point of the above noted associating with fringe types: the idea is to move psychologically away from the class they were born into. Thus they will cease to value the criticism and shame of their former class, and will be able to respect themselves and exercise power at the same time.

This may sound a little bizarre, so I’ll explain.

In order to maneuver in a well-developed system, you must have intelligence. In order to get anything done which the system does not want done, you must have courage. You must be willing to confront the present system and force it to go where you want it to go. Trump is a good example of this. He has braved the skewed Republican primary system and come out the winner. This is because he has both intelligence and courage.

Now, some people born into a higher social class want power. But they don’t have the intelligence and courage to exercise it. As such, they can either be the pawns of the system in order to keep respect (which many of them do), or they can abandon the system. Having grown up in it, it’s difficult for them to do. They have to shift the back of their mind away from an association with that higher social class to something lower. Thus they associate almost exclusively with the fringe types. The point is to shift their mental center of gravity to a different point.