My mother in-law (I am the lucky guy with an awesome one) has very conservative parents. Her mom can debate anyone, and often does, on the failures of socialism. She was fairly delighted to learn that I share many of her views (except the “war on drugs” but that is another article) and loves to share info with me. Among that last pile of books she sent me I was pleased to find copy’s of “Rules for Radicals”, and “Guilty”. So I jumped right in to both of them.
It only took a day or so to kind of put “guilty” on the back burner and become fully engrossed in “Rules”. What I’ve found, as I’d heard it was, is the playbook for community organizing. The goal of which is the eventual “political paradise that is communism”. It is a fairly rambling and sort of nonsensical guide to revolting against the failure of capitalism. While the logic of the reasons behind the revolt fails the smell test, it very coherent in its instructions, rules, and methods. You can see the fruition of many of the goals in the current administration, no question. And I believe if more Americans new the intent, they would never have chosen a Chicago community organizer to be POTUS.
So here is the section that pulled me in. I found it amazing, really, to see it in print. Having seen the repeated failures of socialism and understanding the futility of democracy, I found this to be astounding and ignorant of the truth. Though truth is exactly what they espouse to seek.
“The Ideology of Change” (Sound familiar?)
” This raises the question: what, if any, is my ideology? What kind of ideology, if any, can an organizer have who is working in and for a free society? The prerequisite for an ideology is possession of a basic truth. For example, a Marxist begins with his prime truth that all evils are caused by the exploitation of the proletariat by the capitalists. From this he logically proceeds to the revolution to end capitalism, then on to the third stage of reorganization into new social order, or the dictatorship of the proletariat, and finally the last stage-the political paradise of communism. The Christians also began with their prime truth: the divinity of Christ and the tripartite nature of God. Out of the “prime truths” flow a step by step ideology.” Saul Alinsky. “Rules for Radicals” pg 10
Ok, there are so many ways to go after this that’s it’s not funny but I’m going to point out what I believe to be the fatal flaw in the whole she-bang. What about free will? What if I don’t want to live in this version of political paradise? So this then is the flaw. Communism and socialism can only work if EVERYBODY buys in and cooperates. Socialism can only ever be acheived by force.
Capitalism is the only natural, humane, and courageous form of social order. It allows specialization and merit based reward to ALL who participate. And there’s the rub. Humans like reward! We like luxury, and leisure and believe that these things are a reward for hard work. We like achievement and innovation and these these things are encouraged and rewarded w/ Capitalism. We believe sloth and laziness are bad and these behaviors are also rewarded in kind w/ Capitalism. If you are too lazy, you starve! Is this unkind? Socialists would have you believe it’s evil. Greater good and all.
So, I leave it to you, do we really want to continue down this road to bigger and bigger government? I don’t think so. I think, given third party spending and socialistic ideals, we should be VERY distrustful of gov and politicians. Some out there don’t fear this like I do and am curious as to why that is? They say they hate they big corporations, but at least we know their agenda, profit. But are we clear on big gov’s agenda? Could it be simply growth? or could it be something worse?
So in the end I believe it will be simple human nature that is the undoing of liberalism. We will never all cooperate enough to make it work. We like our challenges and rewards, and capitalism is the only thing that can deliver it naturally.