James Rosen’s Strange Exoneration of Saul Alinsky

Mark Tapson, a Hollywood-based writer and screenwriter, is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. He focuses on the politics of popular culture.


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In a refreshing change of pace from Republican candidates taking potshots at each other on the campaign trail, Newt Gingrich put some perspective on the presidential race when he clarified the challenge for the eventual party nominee, and what is at stake. He told a large crowd in Coral Springs, Florida Wednesday that

We need somebody who is a conservative and who can stand up to [President Obama] and debate and who can clearly draw the contrast between the Declaration of Independence and the writings of Saul Alinsky… The centerpiece of this campaign, I believe, is American exceptionalism versus the radicalism of Saul Alinsky.

Gingrich’s attempts to tie Alinsky, the Chicago community organizer and author of the revolutionary handbook Rules for Radicals, to the Chicago community organizer in the White House prompted James Rosen to question this unusual strategy for Fox News online:

Why does Gingrich think it effective messaging for him to conjure a man who’s been dead forty years, and whose name is recognized, in all probability, by one in every 100,000 registered voters?

Rosen’s piece “Gingrich attacks on Obama resurrect Saul Alinsky” suggests that Alinsky is nothing more than an obscure, forgotten civil rights leader whose model for organizing the “Have Nots” against the entrenched “Haves” aims to empower the powerless and mainstream the marginalized. Rosen notes that Alinsky helped tutor, among others, a young Cesar Chavez, who “became one of the most celebrated activists of the twentieth century,” and that Alinsky’s intent was to teach people how “to realize the democratic dream of equality, justice, peace.” The closest Rosen comes to painting a negative about Alinsky is by noting his “in-your-face” style. He even closes the article by claiming that “numerous Tea Party figures have expressed admiration for Rules for Radicals, as a primer on grassroots activism.”

It’s hard to imagine there could be a single Tea Partier who “admires” Alinsky and his strategy of deception to effect radical social transformation. It would be more accurate to say that anyone truly familiar with Alinsky’s methodology of infiltration mixed with confrontation simply acknowledges its impact on the left and its effectiveness in getting disciple Obama into the Presidency.

To get the complete picture of Saul Alinsky and his influence over protégés like Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, click here to download the Freedom Center’s essential, 50-page booklet from 2009, Barack Obama’s Rules for Revolution: The Alinsky Model, by David Horowitz. The most prominent apostate of the radical left, Horowitz understands them and exposes their cynical, power-grabbing strategies like no one else. “Alinsky is the Sun-Tzu for today’s radicals,” he writes, “his book a manual for their political war.” Here Horowitz identifies Alinsky’s and the progressive left’s political nihilism:

An SDS [Students for a Democratic Society] radical once wrote, “The issue is never the issue. The issue is always the revolution.” In other words the cause – whether inner-city blacks or women – is never the real cause, but only an occasion to advance the real cause which is the accumulation of power to make the revolution. That was the all-consuming focus of Alinsky and his radicals.

Hillary Rodham interviewed Alinsky himself for her college senior thesis, in which she compared him to Martin Luther King, Jr. After college she was offered a position in Alinsky’s new training institute in Chicago, but she went to Yale Law School instead and met future husband Bill – although she maintained her connections to and support of Alinsky’s army.

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  • mrbean

    Professor Tommy "The Commie" Emerson, her mentor at Yale, got Hillary Rodham her first job assigned to the CPUSA financed defense lawyer Charles Garry in the Black Panthers Bobby Seale murder trial. The defense was funded by the Communist Party USA. Professor Tommy "The Commie" Emerson also got her her law internship as the personal law clerk to Robert Truehaft, the head of the CA CPUSA and the Chief Counsel for the entire Communist Party USA. Hillary Rodman not only worked for him as his law clerk for a year, but lived with Trueafts, who were both carding carrying CPUSA members. Her Saul Alinsky is minor compared to this.

  • http://home.comcast.net/~enjolras/site/?/home/ Underzog

    I saw that program, too. What is happening to Fox News? Now they have hired some Collectivist lesbian from one of those Soros groups as a news analyst?

    • alan g

      Who are you talking about?

      • mrbean

        Why, you interested in her?

      • Lisa_H

        Sally Kohn

    • ISAIAH5417

      Remember when Obama and others in and out of his administration were making big ugly noise about Fox News? At that time David Axelrod was given a meeting with Roger Ailes. I was surprised Ailes gave Axelrod the time of day and even more surprised when the subject of their meeting was not EVer publicly discussed. The stench of rotten fish…

  • alanweberman

    Can't you find someone better to pick on than James Rosen?

    • mrbean

      Sure/ Pick on the empty suit Obama.

  • becky

    From his bio: "Before joining FNC, Rosen worked as a researcher to CBS News anchor and managing editor Dan Rather"

    researcher to Dan Rather? You have to wonder…..

  • alanweberman

    He's a conservative

  • ObamaYoMoma

    By insisting on invoking Saul Alinsky’s name in this campaign, Newt Gingrich is hoping to expose the radical roots of Obama’s political nihilism.

    You completely missed it. Look at Gingrich's own Alinsky like bogus anti-capitalist attacks against a fellow Republican, the free enterprise system, Bain Capital, and Mitt Romney. Gingrich in arrogant grandiosity was just signaling to Obama that he also studied Saul Alinsky, which you can bet didn't escape Obama. Gingrich was just trying to appear cocky and exceedingly confident to intimidate his future opponent. However, Gingrich is an overconfident and excessively arrogant moron.

  • jmz

    understand. saul was a comme pos…no doubt. HOWEVER his methods do work and are quite impressive. Anyone who disputes this is a fool. We must learn how to use his methods to spread capitialism and liberty. his effective rules were designed to spread the lies of communism and spread marxism. imagine who 'pissed' he would be and how wonderful it would be to use his own 'rules' against him and the rest of his followers. if it works this well with lies imagine it with the truth of capitialism and liberty behind it!

    • SoCalMike

      jmz,
      Exactly right.

    • Amused

      You're wrong jmz , Alinsky was most definitely NOT a communist .The only reason why YOU think he was a communist , is because you're a little ignorant parrot , too lazy to look up facts , and more than willing to swallow the swill that is laid down before you . So you repeat what is fed you . " No doubt " you say ….where's your facts , your proof positive ? Are they based on what phonies like Newt say ?

    • mlcblog

      I think we must fight him and his ilk in every way we can but NOT stoop to his methods, effective as they are (I agree, who wouldn't?). His methods are deceit and subterfuge. We have better ideas and we can inspire. We have a better outcome. We need to be braver and equip ourselves!! We need to become more influential on a one-one basis and everywhere we can. People, don't give up!!

  • Jim

    obama's version of alinsky seem to say one thing out his mouth and commit foul deeds out the other end

    • fr in sc

      Methinks the foulest deeds come out of his mouth, not the other end!

  • Ron Edge

    Your mentioning Hillary's 'resonance' with Alinsky reminds me of the 1992 jape:

    "Bill and Hillary, just after the election, were driving thru the Arkansas countryside when Hillary noticed that they were low on gas. They pulled into a Service Station where, after the Attendant started the gas pump, he walked back to the open window and said"

    "Hillary? Hillary Rodham? That you???"

    "Why, Hi, Mike", replied a startled Hillary. "Long time: No see!! How've ya'll bin'??

    Wa'll…ya' know I married Betty Sue? Got the poor thang prego's jes' after see'un ya'll, so….whatta goin' tuh do, huh?? Anyways, we got married and settled down here; 'n I've been tol' that, inna cup'alla' years, they might make me Assistant Manager!! Nice, huh??

    "Well, I'm SUPER happy for you, Mike!! So, there's just the 3-of you, then…?

    "Nah", Mike replied, "You know me!! We 'uns got 5-kids, now!"

    "Good fur ya'll, Mike"!!, was Hillary's reply.

    About that time the pump 'dinged', Mike topped-off the tank, Bill paid and Mike, who disconnected the vehicle from the pump, said…

    "Aw'ful good talkin' tuh ya', Hillary"

    "Same here, Mike!! Give my best to Betty Sue!!"

    "Shore 'nuff, Hillary!! Congratulations to you, President Clinton!!"

    After they pulled out, Bill said: "What was THAT all about??"

    "Oh, Mike and I dated in high school and entered college together."

    "Really….", Bill mused…. "Anything serious"??, he inquired.

    "Oh, yeah. I suppose, though we broke-up in our 2nd year", Hillary replied.

    "Well (with a chuckle), It's a good thing you didn't marry him", said Bill.

    "Oh, why is that", Hillary inquired….

    "Well", Bill responded, "You wouldn't be First Lady!!"

    As she snuggled down into the luxurious upholstery, Hillary averred:
    "Sure I would've!!!"

    As for Alinsky?

    If you're interested in helping the "Poorest" among us (especially, today, 1 in 6 American Children) then he was a genius.

    If not, then, he was, simply, a parasite on his Betters.

    Right?

  • Amused

    Newt Gingrich , has got rocks in his head .He's a proven cheat , thief and liar …./to even compare him to a REAL AMERICAN such as Alinsky , is an insult to anyone's intelligence who possesses a functioning brain .
    Most of you dimbulbs cannot see through your own hatred …yea hatred , which is so transparent . Do you think everyone's as ignorant as you ?
    What a pathetic bunch of deluded fools …..just the way Newt wants you ..

    • johnnywoods

      Have a nice day Amused, you pompous arrogant ass.

      • Western Canadian

        Now you have to apologise to pompous arrogant asses everywhere.. he is much worse than that.

        • johnnywoods

          My apologies to pompous arrogant asses everywhere:) (except for Amused).