Sunday, April 11, 2010

Newt Gingrich, Liz Cheney, and Saul Alinsky

Why does it all seem formulaic? Like it's scripted, right down to the pause waiting for the applause. Then it hit me, they are playing from Alinsky's text "Rules for Radicals."
  1. Ridicule is the most potent weapon
  2. A good tactic is one your people enjoy
  3. Keep the pressure on
  4. The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself
  5. The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure on the opposition
  6. If you push a negative hard enough it will break through into its counter-side
  7. The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative
  8. Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.
Wow, 8 out of 13 that I can easily see. Now these tactics aren't what you call playing nice. They are not designed to be, they are about winning, and in the process of trying to win you destroy.

Those that now control the right have found these tactics to suit their needs, just like they found torture to help them accomplish their goals. In the process something is lost and that is discourse and debate.

The right seeks to control the lives of over 300 million people, control them by putting in place what they think is the standard that we should all live by. Now there is nothing fundamentally wrong with pushing forward an agenda you think works or works better than what is taking place. But that is not what is being pushed. Instead we get the poisoning of the waters and the demonization of a party and its supporters. Let's look at what was said recently by Newt Gingrich and Liz Cheney:
  • most radical administration in American history
  • secular socialist machine
  • founded on freedom, not serfdom.
  • founded on the work ethic, not the redistribution ethic
  • founded on defending America, not hiring lawyers for terrorists
  • put down America and diminish our achievements
  • dishonors this nation and the brave men and women who have fought and died for our freedom
If the right has a better plan, lets see some action - not rhetoric. From my point of view, you had four years under Clinton and eight years under Bush to fix health care and put forth the ideas expressed in the "step-by-step, common-sense approach to health care reform."

Those that control the right say they have a better way but all they fixate on is poison and rhetoric. We have serious problems that are fixable but can only be fixed if all sides are considered and the best approach is hammered out through compromise. But compromise is such an ugly word to conservatives - it's seen as weak and capitulating. However that's what governing is all about.

But governing is not what is sought, it's power and when you have power you needn't compromise. You can have your cake and eat it too. All that matters is obtaining and keeping the power regardless of how it's obtained or who you destroy in the process.

A word of warning though: Be careful when you demonize, because some of us hold our truths to be self evident and don't take too kindly to being tagged as something we are not. I'll debate my views with anyone - but you had better be able to tell me why I am wrong and/or why your way is better. If it's six of one or half dozen of another - then you got nothing more substantive then me.

Compromise and governing - now there's a radical approach!

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