Abhi Yerra's Reviews > Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals

Rules for Radicals by Saul D. Alinsky
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# Rules for Radicals

A classic in the realm of progressive causes, “Rules for Radicals” lists tactics and techniques for promoting the cause.

Essentially, Alinsky divides society into:

- Haves: Want to Keep what they have.
- Have Notes: Want to get to where the Haves are but are stuck in a cycle of poverty.
- Have a Little, Want More: The middle class. Want more but don’t want to risk too much. But thisis also where the greatest revolutions come from because they live in-between worlds.

## Some notes

- Dogma must be watched
- To change the system you must change the system from within using the rules and processes of the system.
- Make a declaration from the point of view of the ideal.
- “Do what you can with what you have and cover it with moral garments.”
- To get as many people as possible the goal must be general: “Liberty, Equality, Fraternity”
- It must be on the attainment of power. Because the poor dynamics is to make the powerful powerless and the less powerful powerfule.
- Compromise: Getting 30% more than 0 is still good.
- Self-interest can be generalized in moral principles.
- Organizer: Curiosity, Irreverance, Imagination, Sense of Humor
- Communication: Diplomatic
- ~People who don’t have anything listen to the ones who have because they believe that people who have are better than them because they find their lack of things to be a difficincy on their part.~
- Must react to the events. Must OODA Loop faster than what the enemy is thinking.
- The Haves posses and in turn are possessed by power.
- “Since the Haves publicly pose as the custodians of responsibility, morality, law and justice, they can be constantly pushed to live up to their own books of morality and regulations.”

## Tactics

- You must “Go outside the experience of people you are fighting.” Chaos. Must be outside their OODA loop
- “Power is not only what you have but what the enemy things you have.”
- “Never go outside the experience of your people.”
- “Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.”
- “Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.” Making fun of someone prevents them from action but pisses them off.
- “A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.”
- “Keep the pressure on” with different tactics.
- “The threat is usually more terrifying the the thing itself.”
- “The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition.”
- “If you push a negative hard and deep enough it will break through into its counter side.”
- “The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternate.”
- “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.”

## Fighting in Proxy
- Buy shares of a bunch of companies or if you own Mutual Funds then you are a shareholder who can push your proxy to fight for your cause. Even if only one note having a thousands of protestors go to fight at a stockholder meeting can be valuable in terms of attaching to the agency.

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Reading Progress

February 28, 2016 – Shelved
March 19, 2016 – Shelved as: to-read
April 12, 2017 – Started Reading
May 29, 2017 –
page 78
July 1, 2017 – Finished Reading

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