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To Have And Have Not: Alinsky, Beck, Satan and Me, Part IV

August 19, 2009

invasion of the body snatchers

Links to the first three Alinsky blogs:

Part I: Alinsky, Beck, Satan and Me

Part II: Hell On Earth

Part III: Boring From Within

The epigraph for the first chapter of Alinsky‘s Rules for Radicals which explains that “The Purpose” of the rules is from the book of Job: “The life of man upon earth is a warfare…”

For Alinsky and his Machiavellian radicals, politics is war. No matter what they say publicly or pretend to be, they are at war. They are at war even though no other factions in the political arena are at war, because everyone else embraces the System which commits all parties to compromise and peaceful resolutions of conflicts. For tactical reasons, the radicals will also make compromises, but their entire mentality and approach to politics is based on their dedication to conducting a war against the System itself. Don’t forget it (although if history is any indication, Republicans almost invariably will).


Niccolo Machiavelli

Because radicals see politics as a war, they perceive opponents of their causes as enemies on a battlefield and set out to destroy them by demonizing and discrediting them. Personally. Particularly dangerous in their eyes are opponents who are wise to their deceptions and realize what their agendas are; who understand that they are not the innocents they pretend to be but are actors whose reality is masked. (It is no coincidence that the pod people in the Invasion of the Body Snatchers were inspired by radicals in the Communist era). Thus it is precisely because Glenn Beck is on a mission to ferret them out, that they are determined to silence him and have organized a boycott to drive him off the air. Sarah Palin is another conservative they consider extremely dangerous and therefore have set out to destroy, personally. The list is as long as there are conservative leaders. This is because when you are in a war — when you think of yourself as being in a war — there is no middle ground.

A war by definition is a fight to the finish. It is waged against enemies who can’t be negotiated with but must be eliminated — either totally defeated or effectively destroyed. Conservatives don’t really have such an enemy and therefore are not mentally in the war at all, which is why they often seem so defenseless or willing to throw their fellow conservatives over the side when they are attacked.

The war Alinsky’s radicals conduct is for tactical reasons a guerilla war, as his manual is designed to explain. Conservatives are not at war with the system, but are determined to defend it, including its rules of fairness and inclusion, which provide a protective shield for cynical enemies willing to exploit them. Conservatives embrace the system and believe in the constitutional framework which guarantees opponents the right to declare war not only against them but against the system itself. Consequently, there is no real parallelism in this conflict. One side is fighting with a no-holds-barred, take-no-prisoners battle plan against the system, while the other is trying enforce its rules of fairness and pluralism (which of course does not mean that individual conservatives never break them).

What makes a war a war, is the existence of an enemy who cannot be negotiated with but has to be driven out of existence. For Alinsky and his radicals that enemy is the “oppressor,” the (alleged) “ruler” of the system, the Establishment, the ruling class (or race, or gender as it now happens), those who sit on the top of the “hierarchies” — the “Haves.” According to Alinsky,  America is a “Have society.” His rules for radicals are rules for those who want to take the Haves’ power away.

“The setting for the drama of change,” Alinsky writes, “has never varied. Mankind has been and is divided into the Haves, the Have-Nots, and Have-a-Little, Want Mores.” (p.18)

This is the Manichean bedrock of radical belief, the foundation of its destructive agendas — that the world is divided into the Haves and the Have Nots, the exploiters and the exploited, the oppressors and the oppressed, and that liberation lies in the elimination of the former and the dissolution of the dyad.  “In this book,” Alinsky explains, “we are concerned with how to create mass organizations to seize power and give it to the people.” (p.3) Power has to be “seized” because the Haves will defend what they have (and thus deprive the Have-Nots of what they want). That is why radicals are organized for war.

communist manifesto - cover picture

This myth of the Haves and the Have-Nots is the radical version of the religious division of the world into Good and Evil. If all deprivations and all the social misery in the world are attributable to the greed and selfishness of one group — the Haves — radicals would have a righteous cause. But it happens to be false, and the radicals’ claim to be fighting in the cause of justice a lie. It is the precise lie with which Marx begins the Communist Manifesto.

The history of all previous societies, Marx declares, is the history of  “class struggle.” He then describes this class warfare in this way:

“Freeman and slave, patrician and plebeian, lord and serf, guild-master and journeyman, in a word, oppressor and oppressed, stood in constant opposition to one another, carried on an uninterrupted, now hidden, now open fight,…”

In our epoch, according to Marx, capitalists are the oppressors and are pitted against proletarians who are the oppressed. But to compare capitalists to slaveowners, or feudal lords and serfs, as Marx and his disciples down to Alinsky do, is ludicrous. There are tens of millions of capitalists in America, and they rise and fall with every economic wave. Where are the Enrons of yesteryear, and where are their bosses? If proletarians can become capitalists, and capitalists can be ruined, there is no class struggle in the sense that Marx and his disciples claim, no system of oppression and no need for revolution.


The myth of the Haves and the Have-Nots is just that — a myth; and a religious one at that, the same, as I have said, as the myth advanced by Manicheaans who claim that the world is ruled by Darkness, and that history is a struggle between the forces of evil and the forces of light. The category “Haves” for secular radicals is like the category “Witches” for religious fanatics and serves the same function. It is to identify one’s enemies as servants of the devil and to justify the war against them.

It is true that there are some haves and some have-nots. But it is false to describe our social and economic divisions this way, and it malicious and socially destructive to attempt to reverse an imaginary hierarchy between them. In reality, 0ur social and economic divisions are between the Cans and the Can-Nots, the Dos and the Do-Nots, the Wills and the Will-Nots. But to describe them this way — that is, accurately — is to explode the whole religious fantasy that gives meaning to radical lives.

Because the radical agenda is based on a religious myth, a rational person reading any radical text, including Alinsky’s will constantly come across absurd statements, which only a co-religionist could read without laughing. Thus, according to Alinsky, “All societies discourage and penalize ideas and writings that threaten the status quo.” This statement of course  is lifted directly from Marx’s German Ideology: “The ruling ideas are the ideas of the ruling class.” Alinsky then goes on to this howler: “It is understandable therefore, that the literature of a Have society is a veritable desert whenever we look for writings on social change.” According to Alinsky this is particularly true of our society which “has given us few words of advice, few suggestions on how to fertilize social change.” (p.7) On what planet did this man live and do his disciples now agitate, that they could miss the culture of “resistance” and “revolution” which is now actually the dominant theme of our culture?

Continues Alinsky : “From the Haves, on the other hand, there  has come an unceasing flood of literature justifying the status quo.” Really? The curriculum of virtually every Women’s Studies department, Black Studies department, Peace Studies department, Gay and Lesbian Studies department, Asian and Native American and Chicano Studies department, virtually every anthropology and sociology and often English and comparative literature department in the country, is dedicated precisely to social change. Promoting social change is embedded in the mission statements of major universities and is the subject of innumerable commencement addresses which are often given by anti-capitalist radicals and even unrepentant American communists and terrorists (Angela Davis, Bernadine Dohrn), while the mission statements of virtually every college of education training teachers for our K-12 schools advocates social change and even explicitly promotes the radicals’ agenda of “social justice.”

Angela Davis

Angela Davis

And since we now live in an Internet age, we should not fail to mention massive websites such as Huffington Post and Daily Kos and, which are dedicated to promoting the Alinsky program of seizing power from the Haves and giving it to the people. And then there is the inconvenient fact that our president, a radical organizer and leader of an Alinsky organization (ACORN) himself, and an intimate and comrade of revolutionary extremists, ran his successful campaign on a platform not of defending the status quo but of  changing it.

Part 5: Postmodern Leftism

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  1. carterthewriter permalink
    August 19, 2009 7:18 am

    I believe a very small percentage of the Democrats were misled by the radica;s within their own party and are finding it difficult to find a life raft.

  2. brimp permalink
    August 19, 2009 8:57 am

    What are the liberals liberating? What are the conservatives conserving? These are labels that have no consistent meaning. The Declaration of Independence put forth the ideas that each of us has been endowed by a higher power with unalienable rights and that governments are instituted to secure these rights. Before these ideas were accepted, the Europeans on the eastern coast of North America saw themselves as colonists. After, they saw themselves as Americans. Those of us who still hold these truths to be self evident must reclaim the word American to define us and not to the collectivists. These are the principles in defining good and evil. By never defining the terms ‘good’ and ‘evil’, we let the anti-Americans define them.

    Current ‘liberals’ want the world to be dominated by global government. Current ‘conservatives’ advocate that the world should be dominated by global corporations. The trick here is that the same group of monopolists controls the global government and the global corporations. It is a shell game with no ball under any of the shells. The forcing of individuals into choosing one form of domination over another is a false choice.

    • cjk permalink
      August 20, 2009 11:13 am

      Liberal and conservative are excellent general descriptions undeerstood by millions.

    • cjk permalink
      August 20, 2009 11:15 am

      “Current ‘conservatives’ advocate that the world should be dominated by global corporations.”………..What??? You need some education on conservatism.

  3. Patiotwork permalink
    August 19, 2009 1:54 pm

    Sometimes David Horowitz writes something that rises to greatness. This is one of those writings.

  4. Occam's Taser permalink
    August 19, 2009 5:03 pm

    Thankfully, the Progressives put their “faith” in one of the most incompetent managers/executives ever elected president. His people in odd corners of the goverment will do damage, but nothing we won’t be able to eventually repair. Hopefully, his incompetence will be the shore upon which the ship of progressivism breaks apart.

    And it must gall the true believers to see their true religion reduced to Che on a tee-shirt. We must resist these true believers, but we can resist knowing history will disdain and forget them in the end. How many of us give much thought today to the Albigensians?

  5. Joe Heathen permalink
    August 19, 2009 6:55 pm

    And thus is David Horowitz as pure as the driven snow and without demagoguery?

    • Debra Pence permalink
      August 19, 2009 9:12 pm

      Sometimes, the best and most knowledgeable advocate for reason and truth is a ‘devil’s’ advocate turned deserter . He’s been there, he knows, and because of that knowledge, he knows the ‘devil’s’ plan will, eventually lead to total destruction, including his. Does the ‘devil’ care? If the ‘devil’ is out to take everyone to hell with him, wouldn’t a wise man or one with the instinct for self-preservation rightfully flee the congregation of the cult of death. My answer would be ‘of course’…unless he’s suicidal…or narcissistic….or just plain stupid. How can you find fault with someone who rejects the path to destruction he was once on. I sincerely wish that President Obama could do the same…but I won’t hold my breath.

      This article has definitely raised by level of awareness, and desire to learn more.

    • Debra Pence permalink
      August 19, 2009 9:12 pm

      Sometimes, the best and most knowledgeable advocate for reason and truth is a ‘devil’s’ advocate turned deserter . He’s been there, he knows, and because of that knowledge, he knows the ‘devil’s’ plan will, eventually lead to total destruction, including his. Does the ‘devil’ care? If the ‘devil’ is out to take everyone to hell with him, wouldn’t a wise man or one with the instinct for self-preservation rightfully flee the congregation of the cult of death. My answer would be ‘of course’…unless he’s suicidal…or narcissistic….or just plain stupid. How can you find fault with someone who rejects the path to destruction he was once on. I sincerely wish that President Obama could do the same…but I won’t hold my breath.

      This article has definitely raised my level of awareness, and desire to learn more.

    • cjk permalink
      August 20, 2009 5:20 pm

      Whether or not he’s pure as snow is your strawman chump, what does that have to do with the truth he writes. The left is so predicable.

    • themadjewess permalink
      November 13, 2009 7:12 am

      Joe Heathen: ‘And thus is David Horowitz as pure as the driven snow and without demagoguery?’

      You just proved his point in that small sentence, Joe Heathen…. Gulliver vs. a lilliputian.

      Funny how, at times, fairy tales ring true to life. Gulliver, being as America (at one time) before the lilliputian Alinskyite, ankle-biting leftists went on their 40 year wandering in the deserts of mankind, to try to ‘grow a better place, for the greater good of mankind’ -WHAT have they done, that has made anything better? What? Immigration of illegals that are raping, pillaging, plundering, murdering? (30,000 dead Americans since 9/11) Crime out of control in the cities? Seniors in high school graduating at about 65%? Rap? Hollywood?

      WHAT have these wandering-warriors gotten in their Constantinian battle against mankind? A C.I.C. that thinks he is a movie star. An enemy to everything that America has held dear. An appeasing demonic-hypnotic creature that has destroyed what we are/were in 11 months since his coronation.

      So, John heathen (befitting name, btw..) As the devil came to G-d to be allowed to attack Job, using phrases such as you have used…. More power to the pureness of Mr. Horowitz article, and as the 1st chapter in the book of Genesis in the Bible claims; “The light shines in the darnkness, and the darkness comprehends it NOT.”

      You are STILL in darkness, John, and you don’t GET it.

  6. Michael McCanles permalink
    August 19, 2009 8:16 pm

    I agree with most of what is said here and certainly with its core concepts. I merely suggest that there are historically a few more manifestations of the master-slave model of human behavior that Horowitz is talking about.

    (1) The classic statement of the notion that the normal human state is war is Thomas Hobbes, “Leviathan,” in which he says that the “natural” condition of human beings is “a war of every man against every man.”

    (2) Useful because it illuminates certain perversities not otherwise enumerated in Horowitz’ “most wanted” list is the notion of sadomasochism, a model particularly favored by gender studies. What it adds is the notion that all those who want to be on top are also those who in their heart of hearts fear being at the bottom. “Sadists” in short are only “masochists” who’ve temporarily escaped that condition. But psychologically, those who need to dominate are at the core those who fear that they are only fit to be dominated–ergo, the need to dominate.

    (3) The sociological concept of “relative deprivation,” which is undergoing something of a Renaissance in contemporary sociology, especially where academic study meets political agenda. Deprivation is “relative” when it is “relative to someone else who is not deprived,” which comes down to meaning that the only things you desire are things that you don’t have. (Medieval allegorical pictures of both Envy and Gluttony–which are therefore psychologically related–are of people with long thin necks who because of this condition never receive very much nourishment. They are always hungry, and what they are hungry for is always something that don’t have. They are truly the “poor” whom we always have with us.). It is a concept also articulated as a zero-sum concept: whatever you possess that I don’t possess is taken from me (and therefore owed me: “social justice”).

    In brief, what is being described here is a form of philosophical pathology or mental sickness. Either the Alinsky’s among us awaken to their own self-destructiveness, or then don’t. I.e., either they put a stop to themselves, or someone else has to do it.

  7. cjk permalink
    August 20, 2009 11:10 am

    Excellent and true, but I must protest the placement of Niccolo Machiavelli’s portrait anywhere near that of Angela Davis! Machiavelli was an honorable and decent man whose book should be read by all.

  8. Ron Livaudais permalink
    August 20, 2009 11:47 am

    Even Lucifer deluded himself to the idea of overthrowing God.
    The created overthrowing the creator. I don’t think so.
    In this parallel universe those at war with humanity are
    deluded into thinking theycan run our lives better than we
    can. The few having more collective wisdom than the many.
    I don’t think so.
    History has proven that they are on the wrong side of it.
    The first lesson of history is that we don’t learn from
    history. The intellectuals and elitists sure haven’t and never
    will. And like Horowitz said, they are at war; it doesn’t matter
    what the lessons of history provide for their learning. Their
    world view will continue to make them blind to their futileness.

  9. Linda permalink
    August 21, 2009 11:39 am

    We cannot underestimate the extent of how much marxist ideology has permeated our culture. Primarily promoted by the media and the schools, it has systematically weakened the “freedom” mentality into the “slave” mentality. Slave, that is, to the state. In return for being taken care of by the government, we abdicate our freedom. That is considered, by the left, a fair exchange.

    • carterthewriter permalink
      August 21, 2009 11:46 am

      I believe it is referred to as “Brainwashing” which was a method effectively used by failed states in the past, but in the short term, very devastating.

  10. lexgal permalink
    August 21, 2009 1:18 pm

    of interest may be the following letter to the ‘boston globe’ dated august 21, 2008:

    Son sees father’s handiwork in convention

    August 31, 2008

    ALL THE elements were present: the individual stories told by real people of their situations and hardships, the packed-to-the rafters crowd, the crowd’s chanting of key phrases and names, the action on the spot of texting and phoning to show instant support and commitment to jump into the political battle, the rallying selections of music, the setting of the agenda by the power people. The Democratic National Convention had all the elements of the perfectly organized event, Saul Alinsky style.

    Barack Obama’s training in Chicago by the great community organizers is showing its effectiveness. It is an amazingly powerful format, and the method of my late father always works to get the message out and get the supporters on board. When executed meticulously and thoughtfully, it is a powerful strategy for initiating change and making it really happen. Obama learned his lesson well.

    I am proud to see that my father’s model for organizing is being applied successfully beyond local community organizing to affect the Democratic campaign in 2008. It is a fine tribute to Saul Alinsky as we approach his 100th birthday.


  11. Geewhiz permalink
    October 9, 2009 3:26 am

    Thanks David.
    I particularly found the following thoughts enlightening:
    – For them it is a war and they will destroy their opponents (eg Beck, Palin). This explains how sexism or anything is OK if they do it.
    – They lie which confuses thinking conservatives who get caught up trying to be fair and balanced.
    – They proceed by stealth so you never see their full plan (dishonest)
    – They fight a guerilla war which allows them more latitude than conservatives.
    – They want to destroy the current system even without knowing what they will replace it with except that it will be socialistic.
    – They have an emptiness in them and therefore have needs which impact on other people.

    And it seems that they are often from educated, priveledged, middle class background. I wonder what they will resort to when their current Obama-led push is thwarted by outrage Americans who finally glimpse what is happening. What percentage of the population are they – 5 or 10% maybe in their hardcore and another 30% useful idiots? I wonder.

    Thanks for a great article.

  12. sensible permalink
    October 26, 2009 8:15 pm

    I’d say < 5% of the general population, with the Useful Idiot factor varying over time from 20% – 60% — which is the REALLY terrifying part: witness November, 2008.

  13. October 29, 2009 11:48 am

    Fantastic series of articles. I would love to see you come on Beck’s show for an hour long special and review all of this in detail. It would be so revealing to so many.

  14. November 2, 2009 9:59 am

    One aspect of this article could be improved. All the people in all of these leftist studies programs in our Universities who are so dedicated to destroying western civilization are not examples of the oppressed and downtrodden. They are, if anyone is, examples of “haves” according to their own ideology. This should be more clearly stated since many people out there are actually fooled by the radical’s own attempt to paint themselves as either victims themselves, or as special advocates of the victim class/gender/race/

    There is even a special term that they use to describe those on the pampered side of their imaginary fence who appoint themselves as special ambassadors of the downtrodden, thereby assuaging their own guilt for being part of the “ruling class.” I don’t remember what this term is, but I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. In fact, I’m sure you’ll agree that this description fits most of your younger leftists today.

    The left has succeeded in getting its hooks into young, educated, professional types who a generation ago would have been Reaganites. They’ve been hoodwinked into believing that they are responsible for the plight of people who continually shoot themselves in the foot.

    • Cynthia Thornburg permalink
      November 16, 2009 10:31 am

      It’s called masquerading.

  15. Conservadude permalink
    November 12, 2009 8:30 am

    Its funny, how words like liberal and conservative mean nothing. Traditionally, a conservative believed in small limited government, largely out of a healthy distrust or ruling authorities, including politicians, judges and the police. Now people bend over for any ruling body, especially if they have the appropriate letter after their name. Thats why liberals voted for Bush’s expansion, nation building, and patriot act. When it comes to authoritarianism, both parties will agree.


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