“If God does not exist then everything is permitted.” –Dostoevsky
I ran across this famous quote in a booklet that I read this week. David Horowitz’s Barack Obama’s Rules for Revolution: The Alinsky Model is very helpful in understanding what is happening in America and what is at the heart of the human struggle. It’s easy in our cultural battles to think we are waging a war between left and right, Democrats and Republicans, socialists and patriots, or other competing views.
But that is not the heart of the matter. There is a mission of destruction in the world today that not only gives meaning to the perils of the present hour, but also explains our own personal temptations and failures.
There is a universal monster that is latent in each of us. And there is a being behind that monster.
Before we divulge the source, let’s take a little tour through Horowitz’s booklet which reminded me of the truth. Horowitz is a great authority on this subject. He was once himself a communist radical.
By now it is a well known fact that Barack Obama is a follower of Saul Alinsky, the political radical who was born in Chicago in 1909 and died in California in 1972. We need to look at Saul Alinsky to comprehend the political problems that we’re facing. We also need a better understanding of our current president, Barack Obama, to make sense of his leadership over the past eighteen months.
Alinsky greatly influenced Obama. Let’s begin with our 44th president.
Obama never met Alinsky personally, but he studied his political ideas and taught Alinsky’s methods. On Barack Obama’s presidential campaign web-site, according to David Horowitz, “one could see a photo of Obama in a classroom teaching students Alinskyan methods. He stands in front of a blackboard on which he has written, ‘Power Analysis and Relationships Built on Self Interest.'” These concepts were at the heart of Alinsky’s view that power was to be “seized” by appealing to man’s selfish nature. Alinsky’s famous book, Rules for Radicals, describes the many ways that communities must be “organized” to incite revolution and bring change.
Until Barack Obama became a legislator in 1996, he worked with ACORN, the largest radical organization in America which was built on the Alinsky model of organizing. The Wall Street Journal says:
“In 1991 Obama took time off from his law firm to run a voter registration drive for Project Vote…The drive registered 135,000 voters and was considered a major factor in the upset victory of Democrat Carol Moseley Braun over incumbent Democratic Senator Alan Dixon in the 1992 Senate primary. Mr. Obama’s success made him a hot commodity on the community organizing circuit. He became a top trainer at ACORN’s Chicago conferences. In 1995, he became ACORN’s attorney. In 1996, Mr. Obama filled out a questionaire listing key supporters for his campaign for the Illinois Senate. He put ACORN first (it was not an alphabetical list).”
After Barack Obama became a US Senator, his wife Michelle, told a reporter, “Barack is not a politician first and foremost. He’s a community activist exploring the viability of politics to make change.” Horowitz notes that her husband commented: “I take that observation as a compliment.” Following her husband’s speech at the Democratic Convention in August, 2008, Michelle Obama summed up her husband’s vision with these words: “When Barack stood up that day, he spoke words that have stayed with me ever since. He talked about the ‘world as it is.’ and the ‘world as it should be.’ And he said that all too often we accept the distance between the two and we settle for the world as it is, even when it doesn’t reflect our values and obligations…We have an obligation to fight for the world as it should be.”
Where did Obama receive his vision? From Saul Alinsky. Alinsky says in Rules for Radicals: “As an organizer I start from the world as it is, not as I would like it to be. That we accept the world as it is does not in any sense weaken our desire to change it into what we believe it should be–it is necessary to begin where the world is if we are going to change it to what we think it should be. That means working within the system.”
Now you know the origin of the phrase “Change You Can Believe In.” Obama received his vision for change from Saul Alinsky. So what did Saul Alinsky believe?
Horowitz says that Alinsky’s “preferred self-description was ‘rebel’ and his entire life was devoted to organizing a revolution in America to destroy a system he regarded as oppressive and unjust. By profession he was a ‘community organizer,’ the same term employed by his most famous disciple, Barack Obama to describe himself.”
Alinsky came of age in the 1930s and was drawn to the world of Chicago gangsters whom he encountered professionally as a sociologist. He was a social intimate with the Al Capone mob family and though his biographer calls him an “anti-anti communist,” he had a fraternal relationship with many communist organizations. He didn’t join them them because he felt they were inflexible and dogmatic–whereas Alinsky was a political relativist. But they both shared the same goal. Alinsky said it this way: “We are concerned with how to create mass organizations to seize power and give it to the people.”
Horowitz comments, “Power is to be ‘seized’–the word is revealing. The present system will not allow justice to be realized, so sooner or later immoral, illegal, even violent means are required to achieve it.” Alinsky wrote Rules for Radicals to show his fellow rebels the way. Here are the salient points that Horowitz notes in his booklet. According to Saul Alinsky:
- There are “Haves” and “Have Nots.” The “Haves” oppress the “Have Nots” and must be overthrown. Alinsky is clearly Marxian in this concept and greatly admired Vladimir Lenin.
- Everything is relative. There is no God or right and wrong. Alinsky says, “the radical organizer does not have a fixed truth – truth to him is relative and changing: everything to him is relative and changing. He is a political relativist.” Thus being a radical in the service of the masses is a license to do anything that is required to achieve that good.
- Deception is the radical’s most important weapon and it has been a prominent one since the sixties. Even though you are at war with the system, don’t confront it as an opposing army; join it and undermine it from within.
- This is a war for social justice–a heaven on earth–of social and not personal salvation. The unwavering end of the revolution is a communism of results.
But the most revealing part of Horowitz’ booklet and greatest insight into the heart and mind of Saul Alinsky, comes from Alinsky’s dedicatory page of Rules for Radicals where we find the following words: “Lest we forget, an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical: from all our legends, mythology, and history (and who is to know where mythology leaves off and history begins–or which is which), the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom– Lucifer.”
My jaw almost dropped when I read those words. Alinsky actually praises Satan as the first rebel/radical! Horowitz comments: “Thus Alinsky begins his text by telling readers exactly what a radical is. He is not a reformer of the system but its would-be destroyer. In his mind the radical is building his own kingdom, which to him is a kingdom on earth. Since a kingdom of heaven built by human beings is a fantasy–an impossible dream–the only radical real world efforts are those which are aimed at subverting the society he lives in. He is a nihilist.”
Horowitz, a Jew, concludes his analysis of Saul Alinsky’s political philosophy with this sober perspective: “Alinsky’s tribute to Satan as the first radical is further instructive because it reminds us that the radical illusion is an ancient one and has not changed through the millennia. Recall how Satan tempted Adam and Eve to destroy their paradise: ‘If you rebel against God’s command then you shall be as gods.’ This is the radical hubris: We can create a new world. Through our political power we can make a new race of men and women who will live in harmony and peace and according to the principles of social justice. We can be as gods.” (Emphasis is his.)
Lucifer was the first rebel/radical. His mission is to destroy. Saul Alinsky admired Satan’s rebellion and sought to duplicate it on earth. Barack Obama is an Alinsky disciple.
You and I
But they are not alone. The Bible tells us that all of us are fallen–rebels against God. Whenever we seek self-interest above the glory of God and his ways, we join in that cosmic rebellion. Dostoevsky was right. When we turn from God–rebellion, destruction and chaos are the result.
Yes, a revolution is taking place in our nation–provoked by rebel/radicals. But guard your own heart. You and I are only one choice away from the same mission of destruction.