Rules for Radicals v1.0

A friend sent the the first quote following the other day as a post topic, and I’ve added another from the same source:

“Undermine the enemy first, then his army will fall to you. Subvert him, attack his morale, strike at his economy, corrupt his leaders, sow internal discord. Destroy him.”

“All warfare is based on deception. Hence, when we are able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must appear inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away; when far away, we must make him believe we are near.”

― Sun Tzu

For the Chinese, The Art of War remains current doctrine. But it is more than an ancient (~5th century BC) Chinese military treatise on strategy and tactics.

Consider it as Rules for Radicals v1.0. Saul Alinsky wasn’t such an original thinker. His major contribution (maybe V1.05?) was no more than an amoral gloss: Glorifying personal mendacity, celebrating corrupt nihilism, and justifying individual persecution by the mob.

War” does make for a much punchier title than “Business, Sports, Politics, Strategy, Tactics, and Life in General.” But, Sun Tzu’s advice is often general. With Alinsky’s help it applies to American Leftist academicians and authoritarian politicians as much as to the present day Chinese People’s Liberation Army; and to our SJW Community Organizers as much as to the Russian CyberKommand. Even though they all are enemies.

If you’ve been paying even slight attention, you easily can supply many recent examples of the Chinese Communist Party’s deceitful undermining of the United States. The list includes attempts at subversion, demoralization, economic disruption, corruption of high officials, and sowing of internal discord. That would be in line with Sun Tzu’s advice. I hope we’re doing it to them. But their Fifth Column is much better than ours.

That is, the Chinese have had a lot of help with their efforts. While we can draw parallels to Art of War, more damage results from domestic application of Rules for Radicals. As a few of Alinsky’s aphorisms will illustrate:

“The enemy properly goaded and guided in his reaction will be your major strength.”

“The organizer’s first job is to create the issues or problems… The organizer must first rub raw the resentments of the people of the community; fan the latent hostilities of many of the people to the point of overt expression.”

“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.”

“Human beings do not like to look squarely into the face of tragedy. Gloom is unpopular.”

“A Marxist begins with his prime truth that all evils are caused by the exploitation of the proletariat by the capitalists. From this he logically proceeds to the revolution to end capitalism…”

“To say that corrupt means corrupt the ends is to believe in the immaculate conception of ends and principles.”

“Accuse the other side of that of which you are guilty.”

“They have the guns and therefore we are for peace and for reformation through the ballot. When we have the guns then it will be through the bullet.”

“Always remember the first rule of power tactics; power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have.”

And my favorite – which you never hear – in these days of BLAMTIFA and ‘gender’ chaos:

“The fact that people are poor or discriminated against doesn’t necessarily endow them with any special qualities of justice, nobility, charity or compassion.”

Anything strike you about Alinsky’s advice and current events?

Mask mandates? Lockdowns? Riots, looting and arson unopposed by civic leaders? Pronoun wars? Cancel culture? Election fraud? Destruction of small business? Dollar gutting multi-trillion dollar pipe dreams? Self-debasement of our media? Objections to “Wuhan Virus” as racist?

Further reading:

“In my study of communist societies, I came to the conclusion that the purpose of communist propaganda was not to persuade or convince, not to inform, but to humiliate; and therefore, the less it corresponded to reality the better. When people are forced to remain silent when they are being told the most obvious lies, or even worse when they are forced to repeat the lies themselves, they lose once and for all their sense of probity. To assent to obvious lies is…in some small way to become evil oneself. One’s standing to resist anything is thus eroded, and even destroyed. A society of emasculated liars is easy to control. I think if you examine political correctness, it has the same effect and is intended to.”

– Theodore Dalrymple

“The Party seeks power entirely for its own sake. We are not interested in the good of others; we are interested solely in power. Not wealth or luxury or long life or happiness: only power, pure power. What pure power means you will understand presently. We are different from all the oligarchies of the past, in that we know what we are doing. All the others, even those who resembled ourselves, were- cowards and hypocrites. The German Nazis and the Russian Communists came very close to us in their methods, but they never had the courage to recognize their own motives. They pretended, perhaps they even believed, that they had seized power unwillingly and for a limited time, and that just round the corner there lay a paradise where human beings would be free and equal. We are not like that. We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it. Power is not a means, it is an end. One does not establish a dictatorship in order to safeguard a revolution; one makes the revolution in order to establish the dictatorship. The object of persecution is persecution. The object of torture is torture. The object of power is power. Now do you begin to understand me?”

-George Orwell, 1984

We’ll let Sun Tzu have the final word:

“The greatest victory is that which requires no battle.”

C’mon, Man!

I’d like to supply a link to the WaPo or NYT on this point, since that makes it nearly impossible for Progressive useful idiots to deny. But Wapo and NYT seem to be MIA.

Since I participate in neither Twitter nor Facebook, I cannot say if it has been shadow banned, buried, or otherwise demoted on those plotforms. (Not a typo.)

It is reportable news that far more than half of Americans would like to ponder (Trump voters plus Democrats who don’t believe men can just decide they’re women for purposes of Track or Rugby), from a video of a Chuck Schumer press conference. It should be highlighted by the papers which editorially support the idea, but reporting it might disturb the somnolence of some mail in voters.

Schumer Says He Agrees With Biden On Giving Transgender Students Access To Sports, Bathrooms, And Locker Rooms

What I want to know is how Chuck Schumer even dare comment? Let me show you why, in SJW speak:

Schumer: “Speaking as an ancient, privileged, white, elite, heterosexual male – who championed the Biden/Clinton 1994 crime bill in the House… I fully support Joe Biden’s idea that the Federal Government should ensure females of any age have no protection from males in contact sports, are forced to share shower facilities, and cannot feel secure in public bathrooms generally.”

Isn’t this the very epitome of cultural appropriation? “Woke” is a culture, right?

Gender appropriationists

Well, if they can play Rugby
California will now house prisoners according to gender identity instead of biological sex

So, buy stock in California prison construction. Last I heard there were hundreds of gender identities. Will furries have to be separated by species? Lions and lambs; cats and dogs.

And another question. If men who pretend they are women don’t have to apologize; why, when some white person is caught appropriating black racial identity, do they have to apologize? It’s mostly the same people who demand an apology for the latter and scream at you if you question the former.

What science are they following?

Asking for J. K. Rowling.

Nancy and the Chamber of Deplorers

This – Gertrude Himmelfarb & the Enlightenment – is a recommended read. I was vaguely aware of Himmelfarb, but have never read her. Based on this article, I will be correcting that.

A slice:

Some historians have been led … to claim that at different stages of his life there were two different Edmund Burkes, one liberal and the other conservative. Himmelfarb disagreed. She argued that his views were always consistent with the ideas about moral virtue that permeated the whole of the British Enlightenment. Indeed, Burke took this philosophy a step further by making the “sentiments, manners, and moral opinion” of the people the basis not only of social relations but also of politics.

I think this relates to the difficulty some people have in admitting that Donald Trump has been, so far, a successful President: He started, or at least accelerated, an erosion of “sentiments, manners, and moral opinion.”

This is a defensible proposition. I’ve written extensively on my discomfort with Trump’s bombast and crudity. I’ve come to see it as essential to his success, especially given the antics of his opposition. I’ve also learned to appreciate that many of the off-key things he says are jokes. Like any joke, they’re funny because they typically afflict the elite, and the punch line is unexpected. Especially from POTUS.

In that regard, he’s done us the favor of reducing reverence for the person of the President. The President should not be regarded with the awe the media was wont to promote for Obama. We hire the President, something Presidents often forget. Trump is narcissistic, but no more so than Obama. And probably less so: Trump can be self-deprecating. Something imaginable from Obama only as a humble brag.

Anyway, two things about “He started it!”

One, don’t be so sure. The post-modernists, neo-Marxists, race-baiters, grievance mongers, climate hysterics, agenda feminists, science denying transgenderists, et. al. – ideologues of a feather – were forthrightly blabbering their disdain for ‘deviates’ from their authoritarian agenda for decades before Trump was born.

Trump, with provocations mild in comparison (Who has he called Hitler?), has done us the favor of causing them to reveal the monumental level of disgust they harbor for Enlightenment values. The mask of compassion has slipped.

Two, “He started it,” isn’t an excuse you accept from your children; and no more extenuates Nancy Pelosi’s stationery abuse last night than it does Hillary’s “deplorables” gaffe, nor Maxine Water’s lifetime-achievement-award-worthy contributions to coarsening our quality of discourse while lowering our collective IQ. We need not belabor Adam Schiff’s perfidy.

Hillary directly helped enable Rashida Tlaib, AOC, and Ilhan Omar; and Pelosi is now taking her cues from that mess of pottage.

This officious disregard is nothing new…

Apart from the different philosophical status they assigned to reason and virtue, the one issue where the contrast between the British and French Enlightenments was sharpest was in their attitudes to the lower orders. This is a distinction that has reverberated through politics ever since. The radical heirs of the Jacobin tradition have always insisted that it is they who speak for the wretched of the earth. In eighteenth-century France, they claimed to speak for the people and the general will. In the nineteenth century, they said they represented the working classes against their capitalist exploiters. In our own time, they have claimed to be on the side of blacks, women, gays, indigenes, refugees, and anyone else they define as the victims of discrimination and oppression. Himmelfarb’s study demonstrates what a façade these claims actually are.

The French philosophes thought the social classes were divided by the chasm not only of poverty but, more crucially, of superstition and ignorance. They despised the lower orders because they were in thrall to Christianity. The editor of the Encyclopédie, Denis Diderot, declared that the common people had no role in the Age of Reason: “The general mass of men are not so made that they can either promote or understand this forward march of the human spirit.” Indeed, “the common people are incredibly stupid,” he said, and were little more than animals: “too idiotic—bestial—too miserable, and too busy” to enlighten themselves. Voltaire agreed. The lower orders lacked the intellect required to reason and so must be left to wallow in superstition. They could be controlled and pacified only by the sanctions and strictures of religion which, Voltaire proclaimed, “must be destroyed among respectable people and left to the canaille large and small, for whom it was made.”

See anything you recognize?

Sexist, Transphobic, Excoriable, Misogynist

That’s how progressive government schools define STEM these days.

Let’s use this look at the poet Robert Frost to expand the point: Rehabilitating Robert Frost: The Unity of his Literary, Cultural, and Political Thought

[F]or about four decades Frost was “the necessary enemy” of both “the political left and the modernist literary elite,”… Frost perceived that the common denominator which linked the political Left with the modernist literary elite was their claim to being “intellectuals,” which ultimately rested upon their faith in modern science, and in the application of the methods of physical science to every branch of humanistic knowledge, including politics and the arts.

In both art and politics, in theory and practice, Frost stood in stark opposition to the… self-styled “intellectual” elite, invariably Marxists, socialists, Freudians, or academic liberals, [who] proud of their sophisticated critical approach to literature, identified greatness in poetry with cultural complexity and obscurity…

The point I want to make is not about Frost, it’s that when Marx started pretending to apply science to politics it was inevitable that his fellow travelers would apply politics to science.

Cultural complexity and obscurity has become the hallmark of our current crop of elite collectivists. They deliberately write opaquely to assert their superiority to each other.

Not content to apply ‘critical theory‘ to poetry or literature in general, postmodernist professors of what used to called the humanities claim that mathematics is racist, physics is sexist, engineering is colonialist, and biology is transphobic, etc. etc.. This explains everything from the degenerate state of climate ‘science,’ to the fact that you can graduate from Yale with a degree in English without ever having read Chaucer or Shakespeare.

For example. Also.