Sargon put out a video earlier today that was causing a bit of a stir. In it, he takes a look at the infamous book Rules for Radicals, by Saul Alinsky. It’s funny, because I was just talking about this the other day in a group chat. A couple of people in there seemed to think the book was some kind of evil pamphlet that was only used by the world’s worst people. Well, nothing could be further from the truth. Most of the rules are just common sense, and a couple of the rules that people quote as being dastardly are anything but.

Is personalizing an issue and making it about people rather than institutions a hardball tactic? Certainly. Is the other side using hardball tactics daily in their fight against us. Yes, they are. That’s one reason I decided early on to just go all out and not give a fuck about trying to cut a moderate tone. To me, that’s foolishness when you’re up against rabid ideologues. So, I highlight their bullshit, show people that they don’t practice what they preach, and I ridicule them every step of the way. All these are tactics covered in Rules for Radicals. Like I said, it’s just common sense and fighting fire with fire.

Why would you get ruthless with these people? Well, I’ll just let Sargon show you that as well:

https://twitter.com/Sargon_of_Akkad/status/629059361021775872

Here’s the Alinsky video:

40 comments
  1. Nope! He isnt quite right about it at all. It is a bad book, nothing wrong with reading to find out how the “bad guys” work but keep in mind Alinsky is not a good person. Everything he learned from his close relationship with Al Capone’s mob and the Chicago crime culture is what drove his ethical perspective…rather lack of ethical perspective.

    Theres nothing wrong in Mocking the SJW, Fabian Socialist, RadFems..ect but its not worth mimicking the Alinsky method.

      1. Considering you are the one opting for insults rather than critical thought, I would say you describe yourself perfectly.

        1. If you think we should treat SJW’s with fairness, you might be a cuckservative.

          P.s. mocking people is part of Alinsky’s playbook

          p.p.s. Alinsky may be a horrible person but we are not talking about that.

          1. Who made the argument about “fairness”? You are injecting language and intent into a post that was not there. Claiming “cuckservative” due to your own verbal injection? That is a prime example of whats called a “confirmation bias”.

            Cut it out.

            You are also misunderstanding something, knowing the person, the reasoning and use of their strategies is all part of the complete package. In the same way, you wouldnt just talk about Marxism without addressing and analyzing it through the lens of Karl Marx, how union mentality drove him to conclusions and strategies based mostly on class warfare among other things.

            When we look at the field of anthropology, whether cultural of physical…archeology… true understanding comes from looking at it from the start, its origin point and how it came to be. “it” being whatever the subject matter is.

            So its a bit silly, rather intellectually weak, for people to suggest one just focuses on the text and the strategy….and not on the one who also wrote the text and used the strategy for a particular group.

          2. Apologies for misinterpreting you. I get your point, Alinsky is not a good guy, but his methods are effective because here we are talking about his book again…

        2. Considering you basically said “the tactics are tainted by their origin from a bad person”, you were kinda coming off as one too.

          It doesn’t matter where it comes from, what matters is what it does.

          Bans on Animal Cruelty are a Nazi tactic, it doesn’t mean kicking puppies is moral.

    1. Gotta read this one day. For now, i can say i’m too “moderate (i.e. lack of backbone) to engage in equal level retaliation and ruthless dialogue tactics

  2. It is an excellent book, missing quite a few more modern concepts but perfect if you are an aspiring tyrant who needs a little direction or a person opposed to tyranny and manipulation

  3. “A couple of people in there seemed to think the book was some kind of evil pamphlet that was only used by the world’s worst people.”

    This seems to be people’s thinking about certain books, especially when it comes to books about power and how to use it. This is how people view The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli.

    This text, which Sargon mentions in his video about Alinsky, details how rulers use their power. Often, those in power can be very cruel and brutal. Machiavelli doesn’t do any hand wringing about this fact. That is the way things are.

    Because of these cold calculations about people and how to control them and use them, the average person looks treats these sorts of texts with disgust. But I don’t see them that way. I see them as books detailing how not to become a pawn in someone else’s schemes. Or, at the very least, understanding why people do what they do, especially those in power. I also see these as books as springboards for how to deal with bad situations thrust upon you unexpectedly. But by reading these books you’ll find that if you plan out different outcomes and possibilities that almost nothing will be unexpected.

    So by all means, read Rules for Radicals by Saul Alinsky and The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli and The Art of War by Sun Tsu. You’ll be better for it.

    1. I personally loved The Prince. I think it gets a bad rep because its advice is very straight and narrow, and deals very exactly with the topic on hand: Advice on how to be a functional, successful, and long lasting monarch. What little people know of it is usually grossly misquoted, like the whole “It is better to be feared than loved,” which is the middle line out of a three line opening piece of advice to a rather complicated political scenario.

      I may have to pick up Rules for Radicals. The other two books already sit in my personal book collection.

  4. Deff going to have to check the new vid out. Sargon has become a favorite of mine recently, but I am just a mark for British accents.

    1. I’ve watched – and enjoyed – many of Sargons’ videos. He has fairly strong opinions, all backed up by a great deal of facts & evidence.

      I’ve viewed a few of them with my teenage son as examples of how to correctly defend your point of view.

      It’s more than a little satisfying to see his partner politely telling “Notta” to pissed off…

      1. I think he can be unnecessarily brash when doing takedowns, but he is also damn entertaining doing so.

        A good example was a snark-tastic takedown of the fellow on PBSIdeas. The guy responded entirely civilly on Twitter, so much so that I think it is possible that the two hashing it out without calling the other fucking morons or harassers would be damn interesting. Butts chimed in on that thread simply to accuse Sargon of harassment and deplore the idea that anyone would engage in civil dialogue with those who have different ideas, typical dog fucker…

        But he is great on defense too, in no small part because those possessed of the chutzpah to attack him lack the skill or intelligence to do it well.

  5. Okay folks, I am seeing a lot of “Fuck you” from one side of Gamergate and another “Fuck you” from the other side going on. I say we take a step back, take a huge deep breath, get some air (Oh, i’m so sexist) and think about this situation for a moment! Gamergate is slowly slipping to the SJW mind-set, one disagreement leads to an attack from another Gamergater, and I think this needs to stop. Let’s all stop and accept eachother’s opinions instead of attacking them and calling people SJWs just because you disagreed with them.

    I love Gamergate, I want to be apart of this until I drop dead, please don’t make that decision hard.

    1. These things run in cycles. Every movement becomes its own mutation of what forced it into existence. If you don’t stay cognizant of that you’ll start to conflate labels with principles and get stuck defending a label that no longer lives up to the principles that spawned it.

      I agree with beerhammer more or less. Learning about the tactics to avoid being duped by them… great! Adopting them? They’ve won a convert to the religion of “tactics over facts”.

  6. Can you learn useful stuff from it?

    Duh, yeah.

    But don’t go and do the same things SJWs do, that doesn’t work well.

    Notice how SJWs are steadily alienating neutrals and even people on their side of the issue?

    Why would you want to copy that?

    “No bad tactics, just bad targets” leads to doing stupid shit while dismissing anyone pointing out the flaws as “weak” rather then just smart enough to get that attacking someone who agrees with 99% of the way is counter-productive.

    You don’t win a war by adopting your enemies tactics (they have far more experience), you win a war by adopting tactics better then your enemies, whether via thinking it up yourself, stealing it from a third-party, or taking it from them and improving it.

      1. Actually, you do.

        Have you noticed how many people here say “I was neutral until AntiGamer pushed me into supporting GamerGate”?

        That’s a very good tactic, you get new people & allies by being so obviously better then the other side they drive people right into your arms.

        Good Is Not Soft and all.

        1. Ok, let’s not use the war analogy, because real wars are won by the meanest, and the guys with the nuke.

          Addendum: I’d rather people wake up to stupidity of their convictions without letting people shit on me.

          1. because real wars are won by the meanest

            Not really, in WWII the Axis were the meanest, and they failed due to being Stupid Evil .

            Between devoting massive amounts of resources to the Holocaust in the midst of total war, back-stabbing the Soviets before conquering Britain, throwing away the support of the Ukraine, the Baltic, and other parts of the Soviet Union angry at Stalin by committing blatant atrocities, etc. etc. if Hitler was a fictional villain in a book or movie or game or something he’d be dismissed as too-over-the-top to be real.

          2. Facing the kind of people who don’t institute a mass genocide on the surrendering side?

            Japan would never have surrendered if they would have faced a holocaust for it.

            That’s why fighting ruthless leads to defeat, fighting smart leads to victory.

          3. You’re both right, in a sense. Japan surrendered because the U.S. was implying ‘We don’t have to invade. We can turn your country into radioactive craters without setting a single foot on it’. Yes, the atom bomb was critical for that, but ultimately wars are won when the other side simply has no more will to fight.

          4. Yeah, and if America was going the kill them all anyways there would be no point in surrendering.

          5. Yeah, and all our gentlemanly rules of engagement sure are helping us beat a bunch of primitives in the desert in a timely matter. War is savagery, fighting nice doesn’t help, appeasement doesn’t help, you need to completely devastate the enemy’s ability to fight, that’s why terrorism is pretty damn effective when you’re outnumbered etc, that’s why the extremists do it. Guarantee if we decimated IS, crucified all their leaders, then buried them in pork fat, they might stop fighting.

            Of course, that would be assuming we were fighting for a cause other than invading and telling other people to live our way anyway.

          6. Fighting ruthless instead of fighting smart has been a big cause of America’s present difficulty in the Mideast.

            Torture in Black Sites across the area? Didn’t give good info, did inflame both insurgency and Anti-American sentiment.

            Supporting tin-pot dictators overthrowing democracies? Lowered the price of oil at the cost of permanent military support and also inflamed Anti-American sentiment.

            Playing ethnic tensions off one each other? Massive grudges that make any future solution far harder.

            And there’s when Israel propped up Hamas because Hamas was focused on attacking Fatah at the time.

            Point being these were all “ruthless” plans, and they all failed miserably.

            Guarantee if we decimated IS, crucified all their leaders, then buried them in pork fat, they might stop fighting.

            OK, how are you going to “decimated IS”?

            Massive bombing runs? Hope you got clearance with the nations you’re flying over otherwise you now have a bunch of diplomatic incidences on your hands.

            Boots on the ground? Now you’ve convinced a decent chunk of neutral Sunnis to move to ISIS and the neutral Shiites aren’t too happy either. And that’s only in Iraq, you’ve also made Iran & Syria a lot more wary and other countries will be rethinking things.

            Nukes? Now you’ve turned almost every person remotely near ISIS territory into an enemy and alienated most of the world.

            What’s your plan?

          7. My plan is actually pull out and let the animals destroy each other. We have no business in the middle east. We need to pull our troops our of the 140 countries around the world they are stationed, seal our borders better, and go back to being friendly with all nations, but allied with none. Let Israel deal with their own problems, and stop projecting our bullshit across the world.

            But then that’s just me.

          8. We can still trade, just not support other people’s wars. Also the U.S. Has oil reserves too.

          9. The two reasons America so involved in the Mid-East is A) fighting the USSR, and B) securing oil resources.

            That’s been the standard since Operation AJAX.

            So you need to crush Big Oil before you can withdraw from the Mid-East.

            And the US has oil reserves, but they’re nowhere near big enough at an affordable price.

            You know that “trillion-barrel shale oil” formations? You’d need an oil price of $300/barrel before the majority of that is profitable to extract.

            Hell, fracking generally takes $60-80/barrel before profitability, and that’s with special exceptions to various environmental laws.

            2017-19 is when a bunch of 200 mile/320 kilometer EVs that match the average new car price are scheduled for release.

            After that there’s no practical reason to buy gasmobiles anymore.

  7. Just like science fiction and comics, Gamergate can be described in 3 words: “radical gay feminism.” If you throw in the racial kicker later added called “third wave” or “intersectionality,” it is the only ideology in the world that comes remotely close to explaining what’s going on. Sarkeesian’s “toxic masculinity” and “performed gender identity” are fundamental to gay feminism. The whole explains the single-minded biological hatred for men, whites and heterosexuality.

    The reason the hatred seems so illogical is it precedes the so-called “logic” this ideology uses as explanation. It also explains why their “logic” is so one-sided, as in the case of “cultural appropriation – a racial one-way street. Gender studies academics have spent decades working out these arguments in such a way they have a surface plausibility. They do that by falsely piggy-backing their movement on the morality and good will of equal rights feminism and the civil rights movement. “White privilege” is a sucker’s con game started in the late ’60s by men-hating mental cases like the gay Robin Morgan, promoted in the ’70s and ’80s by the gay black Audre Lorde, pushed by Peggy McIntosh, then bell hooks and now Sarkeesian and John Scalzi, as well as a massive portion of gaming media.rights feminism and the civil rights movement. “White privilege” is a sucker’s con game started in the late ’60s by men-hating mental cases like the gay Robin Morgan, promoted in the ’70s and ’80s by the gay black Audre Lorde, pushed by Peggy McIntosh, then bell hooks and now Sarkeesian and John Scalzi, as well as a massive portion of gaming media. As the years have passed, this hate speech has become more mainstreamed by less radical voices for the simple reason they now see this as “social justice.” That’s why so many “male feminists” have signed on.

    Straight, white and male: that’s the target; everything else is fluff, smoke and mirrors, just like the rhetoric of neo-Nazis and the KKK. The targeted identities never win, and it is not meant that they should. Clarifying this movement has nothing to do with Alinsky and Marx is useful. It saves ammo and energy expended in the wrong direction.

    Straight, white and male: that’s the target; everything else is fluff, smoke and mirrors, just like the rhetoric of neo-Nazis and the KKK. The targeted identities never win, and it is not meant that they should.

  8. I do believe it’s very important to hold SJWs to their own standards, which is an Alinsky tactic. About 100% of the time it exposes them as massive hypocrites, and it’s fun watching them throw a shitfit over it.

    1. And when they try to claim you’re a hypocrite for not following the rules either just say “not my rules, not my problem”.

  9. I’ve commented for a while now on how Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals was being used as a playbook by SJW culture. Granted, this is true of most leftists, but SJWs are quite fond of it.

    But don’t make the mistake of ‘oh we should have nothing to do with this book!’ In conflict, you embrace every advantage. We should have the integrity to NOT use Alinsky’s tactics, but we should make ourselves aware of them, and plan for counters accordingly.

    As one person quoted to me, ‘Cherish your enemies; they teach you the best lessons.’

    1. We should have the integrity to NOT use Alinsky’s tactics

      Some of the tactics are things we’re already using (“Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules”, “A good tactic is one your people enjoy”, “Keep the pressure on. Never let up”).

      As always the best course of action is use the parts that are good, and learn how to counter the parts that are bad.

  10. I’m going to pull a hipster, but I believe I did post this alinsky type of statement on disqus comments on some site (could have been here) and perhaps even on twitter, back when this whole thing started. It’s actually something the far left has been guilty of long before gamergate, just ask Adam Baldwin.

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