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Rules for Radicals

Alinsky's Rules for Radicals is a never ending source of amusement, insight and frustration for organizers and advocates. Read and enjoy
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Here's some ways that the Alinsky Rules play out in the real world.

1. “Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy thinks you have.” Power is derived from 2 main sources – money and people. “Have-Nots” must build power from flesh and blood.  
2. “Never go outside the expertise of your people.” It results in confusion, fear and retreat. Feeling secure adds to the backbone of anyone.  
3. “Whenever possible, go outside the expertise of the enemy.” Look for ways to increase insecurity, anxiety and uncertainty.  
4. “Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules.” If the rule is that every letter gets a reply, send 30,000 letters. You can kill them with this because no one can possibly obey all of their own rules.  
5.“Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.” There is no defense. It’s irrational. It’s infuriating. It also works as a key pressure point to force the enemy into concessions.  
6. “A good tactic is one your people enjoy.” They’ll keep doing it without urging and come back to do more. They’re doing their thing, and will even suggest better ones.  Ridicule is sometimes the best medicine
From Politico's Playbook "“Politicians from across the globe mischievously pose for photographs beside a sign at a French pavilion that reads ‘Make Our Planet Great Again.’ "
When planning a campaign, consider ways to make the tactics funny, but be careful that folks don't focus on the joke (a tactic) at the expense of the goal (strategy). 
7. “A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.” Don’t become old news.  july 7, 2016, (editorial) Frick & Frack are back
Here’s a not-so-friendly suggestion for the advocates of the nonsensical proposal to ban fracking in the city of Youngstown: Track down some of the Vallourec Star workers who have been laid off and tell them why they deserve to lose their well-paying jobs. Indeed, it would be fun to watch Dr. Ray Beiersdorfer, who has slopped at the public trough for many years, preach to those private- sector workers that their loss of income is for the greater good. It’s easy to be a paragon of virtue when you have a cushy job as a professor at Youngstown State University, where the line between fantasy and reality is often blurred. Ray Beiersdorfer and his wife, Susie, have long been the driving force behind the effort to push through a charter amendment that would prohibit the use of fracking to extract oil and gas in the city of Youngstown. City voters have rejected the anti-fracking Community Bill of Rights charter amendment on five different occasions, but the Beiersdorfers and other members of FrackFree Mahoning Valley are undaunted.

8. “Keep the pressure on. Never let up.” Keep trying new things to keep the opposition off balance. As the opposition masters one approach, hit them from the flank with something new.
9. “The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.” Imagination and ego can dream up many more consequences than any activist.  
 10. "The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition." It is this unceasing pressure that results in the reactions from the opposition that are essential for the success of the campaign.  
 11. “If you push a negative hard enough, it will push through and become a positive.” Violence from the other side can win the public to your side because the public sympathizes with the underdog.  
12. “The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.” Never let the enemy score points because you’re caught without a solution to the problem.  
13. “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.  

 Notes & Links
Rules for Millennial Racicals