Using Saul Alinsky’s Rules For Radicals Against Our Opponents

From:,  by John Hawkins,  on  April 12, 2012,  see the article HERE.

Saul Alinsky’s teachings are not new. Many of us are familiar with Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals. But every so often his message bears repeating.

We haven’t been successful in electing a president in the last two disastrous elections and just look where that’s taken us. It’s common knowledge that as a community organizer, Barack Obama embraced Saul Alinsky’s methods, but perhaps you didn’t know that Hillary Clinton was well-versed on Alinsky as well. We can expect her to use many of his concepts to attack conservatives and Republicans without mercy. The left/democrats have used Alinsky’s ideas and suggestions to attack us for years and we can’t expect that they’ll stop using them – after all, they’ve been fairly successful.

I think that it’s high time that we retaliate by using Alinsky’s tactics as well. We’ve tried “playing by the rules,” but when the left keeps modifying the rules to favor their agenda, we lose. We can’t continue to allow them to make the rules, officiate the game, tally the score, and relate a narrative of how the game was played. Every time they control the political “game,” we lose. Another loss or two and the country we once knew won’t exist and we’ll have become “Western Europe.”


Does any of this sound familiar?

Saul Alinsky was a brilliant man. Evil, but brilliant. Unfortunately, whether we like it or not, everyone on the Left from the President on down is playing by his rules in the political arena. Not all liberals have read his book or know his name, but his tactics have become universal. Sadly for conservatives, when two evenly matched forces go head-to-head outside of a fairy tale, the side that tries to play nice usually ends up with its head in a box. So, don’t lie or become an evil person like Alinsky, but learn from what he wrote and give the Left a taste of its own medicine.

Always remember the first rule of power tactics: Power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have.

The second rule is: Never go outside the experience of your people.

…The third rule is: Wherever possible go outside the experience of the enemy. Here you want to cause confusion, fear, and retreat.

…the fourth rule is: Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.

…the fourth rule carries within it the fifth rule: Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.

…the sixth rule is: A good tactic is one that your people enjoy.

…the seventh rule is: A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.

…the eighth rule: Keep the pressure on.

…the ninth rule: The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.

The tenth rule: The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition.

…The eleventh rule is: If you push a negative hard and deep enough it will break through into its counterside.

…The twelfth rule: The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.

…The thirteenth rule: Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it. – from: Rules for Radicals

1) Power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have. Boycotts have fallen out of favor on the Right because the Left has used that tactic to target conservative radio. This is a mistake. That’s because there are a lot more conservatives than there are liberals and we’re much more capable of using the tactic effectively. There are roughly 120 million people who identify with conservatism in this country and almost twice as many Christians. When there are threats that Christians and conservatives will refuse to go see movies, stop buying products, or cancel subscriptions, it will scare some people straight. That threat should be used and carried out much more often.

2) Never go outside the experience of your people. Want to know why Republicans are so terrible at reaching out to minorities? Because identity politics works really, really well and conservatives tend to oppose it on principle. So, white Republicans are constantly trying to go outside of their experience and reach out to minorities who are generally disinclined to listen to them because they have the wrong skin color. When the GOP accepts reality, adopts the tactics of the Democratic Party, and starts paying off our own Sharptons and Jesse Jacksons to reach out to minority groups and call Democrats racists, we’ll start making inroads with minorities for the first time in decades.

3) Wherever possible go outside the experience of the enemy. The GOP often foolishly retreats from social issues. This is a huge mistake in an era when 76% of the country is Christian and most liberals find sincere Christian beliefs to be repellent. We don’t have to preach at anyone, wag our fingers, or turn into legions of Ned Flanders, but we shouldn’t be afraid to talk about our Christian beliefs, stick up for Christians who are under attack, and hammer the Left for its anti-Christian bigotry. Conservatism is a pro-Christian ideology and liberalism is an anti-Christian ideology. We should never be afraid to drive that point home.

4) Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules. This is something conservatives have gotten much better at in the last few years, but we seldom take it far enough. If we did, a tax cheat who advocates higher taxes could certainly never be our Treasury Secretary, Barack Obama would be afraid to associate with race hustlers like Al Sharpton or one percenters like Warren Buffet, and Al Gore would have either given up his mansion or his status as the leader of the cult of global warming.

4A) Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon. Conservatives have a tendency to try to win every debate with logic and recitations of facts which, all too often, fail to get the job done because emotions and mockery are often just as effective as reason. The good news is that liberals almost never have logic on their side; so they’re incapable of rationally making the case for their policies while conservatives can become considerably more effective debaters by simply adding some emotion-based arguments and sheer scorn to their discourse. This has certainly worked on Twitter, where conservatives keep making the Obama campaign look like buffoons by taking over its hashtags.

6) A good tactic is one that your people enjoy. Sometimes Republicans get too serious about politics. Why not hold a fund raiser at the gun range? What’s wrong with having Kid Rock or a bunch of popular country musicians play at a massive voter registration drive? How about building some giant puppet heads of our own, featuring Nancy Pelosi injecting botox into her face or Barack Obama punching the Pope in the stomach? A little controversy and a fun draw in the eyeballs and gets people excited.

7) A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag. This one seems self-explanatory, but in practice, it can be tough to keep things on a timeline. This is what happened to the Occupy Movement, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the Republican race for the presidency, too. If it goes on too long, people sour on it whether it’s a war, an election, or a tactic.

8) Keep the pressure on. Conservatives fall down on this one all the time. Just when Obama’s SuperPac was starting to feel real pressure over taking a million dollar donation from Bill Maher, conservatives eased up. This is also why liberal film stars feel so comfortable trashing conservatives, Christians, and Americans — even right before their film comes out. It’s because we get offended, shrug our shoulders, and then almost immediately let it go. Sometimes, an apology doesn’t fix everything. How often do liberals accept an apology at face value and let an issue go?

9) The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself. How about we treat the Left to some of its own medicine? Libs throw a pie at a conservative author on campus; then we promise to shower every liberal speaker on the same campus with garbage. They post a conservative address online; we post two liberal addresses online. They hold a protest at someone’s house; then we hold a protest at someone’s house. They hit one of our politicians with glitter; we hit one of their politicians with coal dust. Liberals have a mentality that says, “Everything we do is harmless, but everything conservatives do is potentially dangerous.” Yet, we’re usually too well behaved to copy their tactics. Mimic those tactics once or twice and the Libs will freak out so hard that they’ll start declaring it to be off limits for everyone, including their own activists.

10) The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition. When you launch an attack, tie it in as part of a theme and never stop hammering the theme as long as it’s true and it works. John Kerry is a flip-flopper, Bill Clinton is a liar, Barack Obama is bankrupting the country and wrecking the economy — tie your attacks into themes that can be picked up on social media, talk radio, cable TV, and in the blogosphere over the long haul. Why does McDonald’s keep running ads? Because it may be that 50th ad or 100th ad you see that gets you to go buy a Big Mac, just as it may be the 50th or 100th time someone hears that Obama is bankrupting the country and wrecking the economy before it sticks.

11) If you push a negative hard and deep enough it will break through into its counterside. The winner in politics is almost always whoever is on offense. Liberals understand this in an intuitive way that most conservatives don’t. We think because we have this wonderful, honest, logical response to a charge that we’re scoring major points — but, except in rare cases, it’s not true. If you’re spending all of your time refuting the charges that you’re extreme, racist, hate women, and despise the poor — you’re losing. That’s because some people will assume where there’s smoke, there’s fire, and disbelieve you no matter how good your explanation may be. Additionally, if you’re busy defending yourself, you can’t go after the other side. Defend when you absolutely have to, but make sure most of your time is spent attacking relentlessly attacking.

12) The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative. Honestly, this is more of a liberal problem than a conservative one, since liberals always seem to be clamoring to rip out some functional necessity of American society so they can replace it with an ill-defined hodgepodge of ideas that they think will shift power their way or be less “mean.” Our ideas work; so coming up with a constructive alternative is seldom a problem.

13) Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it. Conservatives tend to do well with this one until they get to the last part. Polarization is at the core of the Left’s strategy. According to liberals, if you’re conservative, you hate blacks, Hispanics, gays, Jews, Muslims, women, the poor, the middle class, the environment, and probably a half dozen other groups I’ve forgotten. Even when something is in front of our face, conservatives shy away from polarization. What’s wrong with pointing out how hostile the Democratic Party has become to Christianity? Why not point out the truth: that most white liberals are racists who think black Americas are too stupid and incompetent to compete with white Americans, which is why they push Affirmative Action and racial set asides? Why not note that liberals want poor Americans to stay poor and dependent, because as long as they do, they’ll keep voting for the Democrat Party? There’s a reason Barack Obama bows to foreign leaders, is constantly apologizing for America, attended an anti-white, anti-American church for 20 years, and it’s why his wife was proud of the country for the FIRST TIME because she thought it was going to elect her husband. The sad truth is that these are people who hate and despise this country. What do you think “hope and change” appealed so much to Obama that he made it his theme? When you look at America as an evil, racist, unfair, horrible place to live inhabited by ignorant trash and “bitter clingers,” what else would you do other than hope for change? If you love this country and the values it represents, the people in the White House not only don’t share your values, they hold people like you in utter contempt.


My friends, I believe that we’re in the final two minutes of a political Super Bowl. Are we going to set up our usual “prevent” defense? The defense whose characteristic is that it prevents us from winning? Or are we finally going to fight back – to attack our “progressive” opponents with everything we’ve got? That’s the only way we’ll win. We’ve got to go on the offensive. 

If we lose another election or two, the United States won’t resemble the country that our founders envisioned, that our military fought and died for, and that was once the most successful and powerful nation ever to inhabit the earth. Our freedoms and our God-given rights will have vanished and been replaced by laws controlling every aspect of our lives. Our Constitution – scrapped. The Bill of Rights – gone. Our Second Amendment right to own firearms, our First Amendment right to free speech, our right to worship, to gather together – all gone. All sacrificed at the altar of  liberal/progressive control of the population.

Those of us old enough to have witnessed the downward trajectory of our country have watched as our freedoms have gradually been eroded. We’ve seen the damage done to our beloved United States as leftists have become more influential and imposed their vision of Utopia upon an unsuspecting population. Socialism and Communism have been tried and tried again and they always fail. Our Constitutional Republic has proven to be the best form of government in world history yet some misguided control freaks want to overthrow it and embrace a more controllable form of government – one that places control of our masses in their hands. It is not only misguided, it is evil – and it must be stopped.

It is IMPERATIVE that we conservatives coalesce around a single candidate rather than dilute our support by distributing our efforts and our contributions among several – ensuring that the democrat wins – again. We have a large field from which to choose. We absolutely MUST vet those vying for the nomination and winnow the field down to a single candidate and then come together to push him/her across the finish line. And we must VOTE, we must NOT STAY HOME. It is too serious a time to allow the luxury of not voting “to make a point.” This, we must do or lose our country – forever.


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11 Responses to Using Saul Alinsky’s Rules For Radicals Against Our Opponents

  1. Uriel says:

    Stand up and take a bow Garnet. Most excellent article with positive things we should all be doing.

  2. Clyde says:

    World-class, Garnet. I have been saying this for YEARS. Alinsky-type tactics may be distasteful, BUT they WORK. Why not use them ? Damn republican cowards anyway. Too used to being the “nice guy” will get you TRAMPLED by these asshats.

    • Garnet92 says:

      You got the point Clyde. The left has been using them against us for years – and they’ve been working. So it makes NO sense for us to refuse to use methods that have proven to work just so we can say that “we’re better than that.” Yeah, maybe so, but we’ve had to say that while watching Obama scuttle the American ship of state – how does that make sense?

  3. Kathy says:

    We have work to do.

  4. Hardnox says:

    Excellent post. Mark Levin went on a long rant about this exact topic this evening and also tagged bat-ears and Hildabeast as Alinsky’s disciples.

    There’s no doubt that this is the plan. Ditto on the commie plan laid out decades ago.

    As you pointed out we have one shot left. If we miss we are finished.

  5. Garnet92 says:

    I wish I could catch Levin more often, he’s usually spot on.

    We need to ignore the Roves of the RINO party and do things differently. Under RINO guidance for the past two elections, all it got us was losses. Following their failed plans didn’t work. It’s time to do something different, and maybe it’s to follow Alinsky’s plans and beat the left at its own game.

    • Hardnox says:

      I think using their tactics would fail because it’s a suit that doesn’t fit us, we don’t think or act like them.

      The biggest problem the R’s have is perpetually trying to get the media to like us, which will never happen. Instead they need to treat the media as the enemy by first pledging millions to the networks and affiliates then pulling the plug at the first hint of bias which would be seconds later. Having the alphabets host debates is insane. Just let FOX host them and let the rest starve.

      On a side note, Rove just screwed the pooch by getting caught lying about Cruz and Bush 41’s endorsement of him when running for Texas AG. Levin had him on last night.

      Rove is the problem with the R’s strategy. Why they still defer to him defies logic.

      I think any candidate can use the left’s record against them. First keep it general, don’t describe how to build a clock, and let the left attempt to defend their record. Do it every day. Offense, offense, offense. At the same time offer a different plan. When the alphabets perform their slime just call them on it by politely telling them to pound sand. Some of our guys are good at it.

  6. vonmesser says:

    Maybe what “we” need to do is take these rules, and rewrite them.
    Then send the rewritten version off to various churches, groups (like the “militias”) etc.
    What would (could) happen is that they would start using them locally – and raise holy hell (pun intended) with liberals.