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National Education Association recommends Saul Alinsky “Rules for Radicals” – American Thinker

November 3, 2009

alinskyNovember 03, 2009

National Education Association recommends Saul Allinsky

Right there on the official website:

“An inspiration to anyone contemplating action in their community! And to every organizer!” 

via American Thinker Blog: National Education Association recommends Saul Allinsky.

  1. Carterthewriter permalink
    November 3, 2009 7:39 AM

    The only positive thing about this trend is that it makes us aware of the intent of the Obama Administration to subvert our freedoms in every way possible!

  2. Tater Salad permalink
    November 3, 2009 8:23 AM


    I have been slogging through Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals. In it he defines the people of the world in three categories: the Haves, the Have-nots and the Have-a-little, want mores. He argues that it is the universal “job” of the Haves to prevent change to protect what they have, the job of the Have-nots to take from the Haves and the Have-a-little, want mores (the middle class) to sit on on the sidelines and wait to see what happens. He believes – much like Lenin – that the job of the radical revolutionary is to convince the Have-a-little, want mores to help the Have-nots bring about revolutionary change. As a means to ending inequality of wealth he says, “I will argue the failure to use power for a more equitable distribution of the means of life for all people signals the end of the revolution and the start of the counterrevolution.”

    He claims he isn’t a communist or a Marxist, however. Alinsky bemoans a situation where revolution is always synonymous with communism and Marxism. “We have permitted a suicidal situation to unfold wherein revolution and communism have become one,” he complains. He argues that he has no ideology at all and that his goal is only to create a better society. Like leftists everywhere, Alinsky believes that human happiness is based on the social order and, if only the right order can be found, human happiness will abound. He believes that if people are placed in the proper social order, human nature itself will change. He sees the failure of all attempts at communist societies and recognizes the lack of marketability of Marxist and communist labels. He doesn’t much deviate from the goals of Marxism except to engage in a certain amoral nihilism that is found in the second chapter of his book.

    In the chapter titled “Of Means and Ends” Alinsky asks the perennial question, “does the end justify the means.” He correctly points out that the question is nonsensical and should be be “does this particular end justify these specific means.” He then goes about documenting his eleven rules for the ethics of means and ends.

    1. One’s concerns with the ethics of means and ends varies inversely with one’s personal interest in the issue.

    Here he is saying that it is easy to judge the behavior of others as ethical or unethical if your ass isn’t on the line. “We all have strength enough to endure the misfortune of others.”

    2. The judgment of the ethics of means is dependent upon the political position of those sitting in judgment.

    Here he explains that all is relative. A hawk may seem evil to a field mouse while we judge the hawk to be morally neutral. Wolves are evil to deer and the George Washington was evil in the judgment of King George II. He would today that bin Laden is only evil to Americans but that is a subjective judgment. He is no more evil to his supporters than was George Washington to the colonial citizens.

    3. In war the end justifies almost any means.

    When your ass is on the line, you can do anything and it may be considered moral. He relates the story of Winston Churchill welcoming the Soviet Union to the alliance against Hitler and being asked if it was morally acceptable to form an alliance with a totalitarian murderer like Stalin, Churchill assured his questioner that there is was no moral issues in partnering with Stalin. He said, “I have only one purpose, the destruction of Hitler, and my life is much simplified thereby. If Hitler invaded Hell I would make at least one favorable reference to the Devil in the House of Commons.”

    4. Judgment must be made in the context of the times in which the action occurred and not from any other chronological vantage point.

    Habeus corpus is a moral good but Abraham Lincoln suspended it during the Civil War and used illegal military commissions to try civilians. Alinsky believes that this was morally acceptable then, due to the circumstances, even if it wouldn’t be today.

    5. Concern with ethics increases with the number of means available and vice versa.

    Here he essentially says that, when you have multiple means, you should use the most ethical. If you are limited with a single means for achieving your end, you should use it without consideration of the ethics of it… you have no other choice. If you have many choices of means to achieve your end, you can and should concern yourself with ethics.

    6. The less important the end to be desired, the more one can afford to engage in ethical evaluations of means.

    This is pretty straight forward. Ends of little importance should have their means intensely vetted. With critically important ends, the ethics of the means become of little consequence.

    7. Generally success or failure is a mighty determinant of ethics.

    History is written by the winners. If you are successful in accomplishing your end, your means will be judged ethical regardless of what occurred.

    8. The morality of a means depends upon whether the means is being employed at a time of imminent defeat or imminent victory.

    It isn’t okay to go straight to the nuclear option. If, on the other hand, the enemy is at the gates and defeat is imminent, you can take the gloves off. When you are making your last stand, anything you do is ethical.

    9. Any effective means is automatically judged by the opposition as being unethical.

    Blockading Southern ports during the Civil War was judged unethical by the Confederates. Fighting like Indians and savages by the militia during the U.S. Revolutionary War was considered unethical by the British. Tea parties and boisterous townhall meetings are considered unethical by Pelosi and Reid. If it works, the opposition will call it unethical.

    10. You do what you can with what you have and clothe it with moral garments.

    Alinsky claims that Gandhi would rather have fought the British with firearms but he had no guns and he had no army. Therefore he invented nonviolent resistance and pretended that it was his first choice due to the ethics of it. Alinsky argues that nonviolence was his only choice so he draped it in morality so it didn’t appear to be the only choice of a weak movement.

    11. Goals must be phrased in general terms like “ Liberty, Equality, Fraternity,” “Of the Common Welfare,” “Pursuit of Happiness,” or “Bread and Peace.”

    Alinsky wants to ensure a “goal once named cannot be countermanded.” It doesn’t matter that setting out to preserve the Union becomes a quest to end slavery if the entire enterprise has its goals marketed broadly in terms of freedom and liberty. It is all in the spin.

    The summation of these rules is that there is no objective morality or individual ethic. All ethics and morality are circumstantial and, while all ends don’t justify any means, there are ends that justify any means. Alinsky argues that important ends justify almost any means and that individual morality is the hobgoblin of history’s losers.

    The above set of rules certainly justify as ethical and moral the waterboarding of Kahlid Sheik Mohammad as a means to save many thousands of American lives. The above rules also justify Holder’s investigation and prosecution of the waterboarders. The ethical justification of Holder’s hobbling of the CIA is to solidify the support of the base for Obama and to bring about the Administration’s goal of weakening the CIA and its ability to, in their view, oppress people around the world. Obama and Holder almost certainly have no opposition to waterboarding per se, they are simply using available means to reach what they see as critically important ends. This, according to Alinsky, is all perfectly ethical.

    You will find in the Obama Administration no moral compass. The term “moral compass” implies there is some objective “true north” of moral and ethical behavior. As students of Alinsky, Obama and his enablers believe no such objectively moral absolutes exist. Individual ethics are for suckers. Anchored morality is for losers. The ends will always justify the means for the victorious.

    This is the opponent we face. We should not be surprised when the Obama Administration justifies shocking means to what they deem critical ends.

  3. November 3, 2009 9:05 AM

    Illuminating, depressing, and more than a tad frightening. If the author is correct, it will be very difficult to judge the Obama administration’s longterm goals by their public statements and budget allocations.

    Let us hope that Obama was just pandering to local leftists in Chicago when he praised Rules for Radicals. After all, it’s difficult to know what words of the President to believe – and to doubt.

  4. Tater Salad permalink
    November 3, 2009 9:13 AM

    ………..and here is Pelosi’s 111 New Bureaucracies in the House Bill:

    November 3rd, 2009 From the House Republican Conference’s website:

    New Federal Bureaucracies Created in Pelosi Health Care Bill
    November 2, 2009

    The House Republican Conference has compiled a list of all the new boards, bureaucracies, commissions, and programs created in H.R. 3962, Speaker Pelosi’s government takeover of health care:

    1. Retiree Reserve Trust Fund (Section 111(d), p. 61)

    2. Grant program for wellness programs to small employers (Section 112, p. 62)

    3. Grant program for State health access programs (Section 114, p. 72)

    4. Program of administrative simplification (Section 115, p. 76)

    5. Health Benefits Advisory Committee (Section 223, p. 111)

    6. Health Choices Administration (Section 241, p. 131)

    7. Qualified Health Benefits Plan Ombudsman (Section 244, p. 138)

    8. Health Insurance Exchange (Section 201, p. 155)

    9. Program for technical assistance to employees of small businesses buying Exchange coverage (Section 305(h), p. 191)

    10. Mechanism for insurance risk pooling to be established by Health Choices Commissioner (Section 306(b), p. 194)

    11. Health Insurance Exchange Trust Fund (Section 307, p. 195)

    12. State-based Health Insurance Exchanges (Section 308, p. 197)

    13. Grant program for health insurance cooperatives (Section 310, p. 206)

    14. “Public Health Insurance Option” (Section 321, p. 211)

    15. Ombudsman for “Public Health Insurance Option” (Section 321(d), p. 213)

    16. Account for receipts and disbursements for “Public Health Insurance Option” (Section 322(b), p. 215)

    17. Telehealth Advisory Committee (Section 1191 (b), p. 589)

    18. Demonstration program providing reimbursement for “culturally and linguistically appropriate services” (Section 1222, p. 617)

    19. Demonstration program for shared decision making using patient decision aids (Section 1236, p. 648)

    20. Accountable Care Organization pilot program under Medicare (Section 1301, p. 653)

    21. Independent patient-centered medical home pilot program under Medicare (Section 1302, p. 672)

    22. Community-based medical home pilot program under Medicare (Section 1302(d), p. 681)

    23. Independence at home demonstration program (Section 1312, p. 718)

    24. Center for Comparative Effectiveness Research (Section 1401(a), p. 734)

    25. Comparative Effectiveness Research Commission (Section 1401(a), p. 738)

    26. Patient ombudsman for comparative effectiveness research (Section 1401(a), p. 753)

    27. Quality assurance and performance improvement program for skilled nursing facilities (Section 1412(b)(1), p. 784)

    28. Quality assurance and performance improvement program for nursing facilities (Section 1412 (b)(2), p. 786)

    29. Special focus facility program for skilled nursing facilities (Section 1413(a)(3), p. 796)

    30. Special focus facility program for nursing facilities (Section 1413(b)(3), p. 804)

    31. National independent monitor pilot program for skilled nursing facilities and nursing facilities (Section 1422, p. 859)

    32. Demonstration program for approved teaching health centers with respect to Medicare GME (Section 1502(d), p. 933)

    33. Pilot program to develop anti-fraud compliance systems for Medicare providers (Section 1635, p. 978)

    34. Special Inspector General for the Health Insurance Exchange (Section 1647, p. 1000)

    35. Medical home pilot program under Medicaid (Section 1722, p. 1058)

    36. Accountable Care Organization pilot program under Medicaid (Section 1730A, p. 1073)

    37. Nursing facility supplemental payment program (Section 1745, p. 1106)

    38. Demonstration program for Medicaid coverage to stabilize emergency medical conditions in institutions for mental diseases (Section 1787, p. 1149)

    39. Comparative Effectiveness Research Trust Fund (Section 1802, p. 1162)

    40. “Identifiable office or program” within CMS to “provide for improved coordination between Medicare and Medicaid in the case of dual eligibles” (Section 1905, p. 1191)

    41. Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (Section 1907, p. 1198)

    42. Public Health Investment Fund (Section 2002, p. 1214)

    43. Scholarships for service in health professional needs areas (Section 2211, p. 1224)

    44. Program for training medical residents in community-based settings (Section 2214, p. 1236)

    45. Grant program for training in dentistry programs (Section 2215, p. 1240)

    46. Public Health Workforce Corps (Section 2231, p. 1253)

    47. Public health workforce scholarship program (Section 2231, p. 1254)

    48. Public health workforce loan forgiveness program (Section 2231, p. 1258)

    49. Grant program for innovations in interdisciplinary care (Section 2252, p. 1272)

    50. Advisory Committee on Health Workforce Evaluation and Assessment (Section 2261, p. 1275)

    51. Prevention and Wellness Trust (Section 2301, p. 1286)

    52. Clinical Prevention Stakeholders Board (Section 2301, p. 1295)

    53. Community Prevention Stakeholders Board (Section 2301, p. 1301)

    54. Grant program for community prevention and wellness research (Section 2301, p. 1305)

    55. Grant program for research and demonstration projects related to wellness incentives (Section 2301, p. 1305)

    56. Grant program for community prevention and wellness services (Section 2301, p. 1308)

    57. Grant program for public health infrastructure (Section 2301, p. 1313)

    58. Center for Quality Improvement (Section 2401, p. 1322)

    59. Assistant Secretary for Health Information (Section 2402, p. 1330)

    60. Grant program to support the operation of school-based health clinics (Section 2511, p. 1352)

    61. Grant program for nurse-managed health centers (Section 2512, p. 1361)

    62. Grants for labor-management programs for nursing training (Section 2521, p. 1372)

    63. Grant program for interdisciplinary mental and behavioral health training (Section 2522, p. 1382)

    64. “No Child Left Unimmunized Against Influenza” demonstration grant program (Section 2524, p. 1391)

    65. Healthy Teen Initiative grant program regarding teen pregnancy (Section 2526, p. 1398)

    66. Grant program for interdisciplinary training, education, and services for individuals with autism (Section 2527(a), p. 1402)

    67. University centers for excellence in developmental disabilities education (Section 2527(b), p. 1410)

    68. Grant program to implement medication therapy management services (Section 2528, p. 1412)

    69. Grant program to promote positive health behaviors in underserved communities (Section 2530, p. 1422)

    70. Grant program for State alternative medical liability laws (Section 2531, p. 1431)

    71. Grant program to develop infant mortality programs (Section 2532, p. 1433)

    72. Grant program to prepare secondary school students for careers in health professions (Section 2533, p. 1437)

    73. Grant program for community-based collaborative care (Section 2534, p. 1440)

    74. Grant program for community-based overweight and obesity prevention (Section 2535, p. 1457)

    75. Grant program for reducing the student-to-school nurse ratio in primary and secondary schools (Section 2536, p. 1462)

    76. Demonstration project of grants to medical-legal partnerships (Section 2537, p. 1464)

    77. Center for Emergency Care under the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (Section 2552, p. 1478)

    78. Council for Emergency Care (Section 2552, p 1479)

    79. Grant program to support demonstration programs that design and implement regionalized emergency care systems (Section 2553, p. 1480)

    80. Grant program to assist veterans who wish to become emergency medical technicians upon discharge (Section 2554, p. 1487)

    81. Interagency Pain Research Coordinating Committee (Section 2562, p. 1494)

    82. National Medical Device Registry (Section 2571, p. 1501)

    83. CLASS Independence Fund (Section 2581, p. 1597)

    84. CLASS Independence Fund Board of Trustees (Section 2581, p. 1598)

    85. CLASS Independence Advisory Council (Section 2581, p. 1602)

    86. Health and Human Services Coordinating Committee on Women’s Health (Section 2588, p. 1610)

    87. National Women’s Health Information Center (Section 2588, p. 1611)

    88. Centers for Disease Control Office of Women’s Health (Section 2588, p. 1614)

    89. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Office of Women’s Health and Gender-Based Research (Section 2588, p. 1617)

    90. Health Resources and Services Administration Office of Women’s Health (Section 2588, p. 1618)

    91. Food and Drug Administration Office of Women’s Health (Section 2588, p. 1621)

    92. Personal Care Attendant Workforce Advisory Panel (Section 2589(a)(2), p. 1624)

    93. Grant program for national health workforce online training (Section 2591, p. 1629)

    94. Grant program to disseminate best practices on implementing health workforce investment programs (Section 2591, p. 1632)

    95. Demonstration program for chronic shortages of health professionals (Section 3101, p. 1717)

    96. Demonstration program for substance abuse counselor educational curricula (Section 3101, p. 1719)

    97. Program of Indian community education on mental illness (Section 3101, p. 1722)

    98. Intergovernmental Task Force on Indian environmental and nuclear hazards (Section 3101, p. 1754)

    99. Office of Indian Men’s Health (Section 3101, p. 1765)

    100. Indian Health facilities appropriation advisory board (Section 3101, p. 1774)

    101. Indian Health facilities needs assessment workgroup (Section 3101, p. 1775)

    102. Indian Health Service tribal facilities joint venture demonstration projects (Section 3101, p. 1809)

    103. Urban youth treatment center demonstration project (Section 3101, p. 1873)

    104. Grants to Urban Indian Organizations for diabetes prevention (Section 3101, p. 1874)

    105. Grants to Urban Indian Organizations for health IT adoption (Section 3101, p. 1877)

    106. Mental health technician training program (Section 3101, p. 1898)

    107. Indian youth telemental health demonstration project (Section 3101, p. 1909)

    108. Program for treatment of child sexual abuse victims and perpetrators (Section 3101, p. 1925)

    109. Program for treatment of domestic violence and sexual abuse (Section 3101, p. 1927)

    110. Native American Health and Wellness Foundation (Section 3103, p. 1966)

    111. Committee for the Establishment of the Native American Health and Wellness Foundation (Section 3103, p. 1968)

    And here we thought ‘healthcare reform’ was just about reforming health insurance so that everyone would be covered.

  5. Carterthewriter permalink
    November 3, 2009 12:41 PM

    Tater, I hope all that is printed on toilet papar so we can put it to good use!

  6. November 4, 2009 6:25 AM

    Eric, Just hoping he was pandering to local leftists in Chicago leaves out the fact that he taught Saul Alinsky’s methods to community organizers and that he was praised as being one of the best at it. See article by Ryan Lizza of the New Republic here
    When I was young I was taught that birds of a feather flock together. Look at who he flocks with…that tell you exactly who he is. There’s tons of information out there about who he is.
    I once had a friend whom I caught in a lie…after that it was hard to believe anything she had ever said….and so I didn’t.

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