Friday, August 15, 2014

Barack Obama and Saul Alinsky: Fanning the Fires of Resentment Isn't Enough to Run a Country


I am currently rereading Saul Alinsky's Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radcials. While reading the book, I've compared President Barack Obama's actions and governing style with Alinsky's explanations of the role of the community organizer. Obama's "style" and, especially, his mismanagement of the office of the President of the United States can be understood completely when compared with Alinsky's socialist philosophy.

One example of how Obama operates struck me this morning:
[The organizer] has taken a group;...he has fanned their resentments and hostilities by a number of means, including challenging contrasts of better conditions....And so the... organizer simultaneously breeds conflict and builds a power structure.
Consider Obama's campaign and the way he has subsequently ignored the common American problems of the still floundering economy, the failed foreign and domestic policies, the porous border with Mexico, the deficit spending, the abuse of executive power, and on and on and on.

For everything Obama does wrong, he blames others. For everything bad that happens that Obama cannot, or will not, respond to, he blames others.

First it was Bush's fault. (And now it's Bush's fault again that Iraq has imploded with ISIS.) Obama initially blamed Bush in order to "fan resentment and hostility" Obama sailed into office as the Great Community Organizer.

We have to admit, that Alinsky's tactics worked for Obama. He has certainly built resentment and hostility against George W. Bush, against Republicans, and now against conservatives (blaming the nebulous "Tea Party" for example).

Yet, now that we have the resentment, we have to ask ourselves, has the Obama administration brought the "better conditions" that Americans sought during the 2008 and 2012 elections? Consider the following:
  • A spending package that increased deficit spending and a federal debt that dwarfs anything any other president did
  • A spending package full of waste and payouts to big business (like GM)
  • A "stimulus" concept that failed to promote private sector jobs
  • A health care deal guaranteed to increase taxes, raise medical costs, and hurt middle class Americans
  • Running guns into Mexico, then blaming private businesses for it
  • Refusing to enforce federal law again and again when the administration  disagreed with the law
  • Blaming the Fort Hood shooting as a "domestic" problem and not a problem with Militant Islamism
  • A "military action" in Libya with no Congressional oversight
  • Ignoring and denying any responsibility for Benghazi deaths
  • Foreign policy blunders that fed the overthrow of Egypt, the massacre of Iranian citizens, and utter impotence in Syria
  • Supporting terrorists against the State of Israel
  • An economy still floundering and befuddling the mainstream media
  • NSA spying on Americans
  • CIA spying on members of Congress
  • IRS harassment and blocking conservative groups
  • The IRS conveniently losing key emails
  • 23 unilateral changes to the Obamacare law
  • Lying to Americans about Obamacare's impact (If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan.)
  • Playing foolish and dangerous games with Mideast countries
  • Catering to terrorists
  • Releasing five terrorists for one American deserter
  • Losing Iraq to ISIS terrorists
  • "Leading from behind" foreign policy that allows Russia to start another cold war
  • The dangerous unilateral reduction in military spending
  • 177 rounds of golf
  • De facto amnesty for illegal aliens pouring over the US border
Are we really better off with Obama at the head of the US? He arrived in office using Alinsky's tactics, but his bankrupt dogma fails the litmus test of pragmatic solutions. And that, of course, fans the flames of resentment and hostility.


What did Americans expect from the Community Organizer in Chief?