Curtis Dahlgren
A rerun: Those 60s Alinskyites think they are taking over America
By Curtis Dahlgren
March 14, 2022

(Note: From 2011, one of my most-read columns)

"Despite what some in the press may say, we who are proud to call ourselves 'conservative' are not a minority of a minority party; we are part of the great majority of Americans of both major parties and of most of the independents as well." — Ronald Reagan (1977)

I SAID I was going to write some more about gasoline prices this week, but I received a free copy of "Barack Obama's Rules for Revolution" from David Horowitz, so I want to review it — and seriously recommend it! A few excerpts:

    In 1969, the year that publishers reissued Alinsky's first book, Reveille for Radicals, a Wellesly undergraduate named Hillary Rodham submitted her 92-page senior thesis on Alinsky's theories . . .

    The title of Hillary's thesis was 'There Is Only the Fight: An Analysis of the Alinsky Model.' In this title she had singled out the single most important Alinsky contribution to the radical cause — his embrace of political nihilism.

I've written well-over a thousand pages for RenewAmerica, and many many pages about the hippie-nihilists of the sixties (1860s Russia). The Latin word "nil" was a contraction of the word for 'nothing.' The Russian nihilists believed in nothing but the accumulation of power for power's sake. Sound familiar yet? More Horowitz:

    Alinsky came of age in the 1930s and was drawn to the world of Chicago gangsters, whom he encountered professionally as a sociologist. He sought out and became a social intimate of the Al Capone mob and of Capone enforcer Frank Nitti who took the reins when Capone was sent to prison for tax evasion in 1931.

    Later Alinsky said, '[Nitti] took me under his wing. I called him the Professor and I became his student'. . . . In his view, criminality was not a character problem but a result of the social environment, in particular the system of private property and individual rights, which radicals like him were determined to change . .

    In the 1969 'Afterward' to his book . . he explained his attitude in these words: 'Communism itself is irrelevant. The issue is whether they are on our side . . . he never questioned the Marxist view of society and human nature, or its goal of a utopian future . .

Alinsky's rules take "an agnostic view of means and ends." For him, "the revolutionary's purpose is to undermine the system and then see what happens."

That's exactly what I have written about the 1860s Russian Nihilists who combined Darwinism with socialism, and set the stage for the eventual Bolshevik Revolution over 50 years later.

    Some of the Nihilists maintained that things were not yet ripe for a rising of the masses . . that before attempting to overthrow the existing social organization some idea should be formed as to the order of things which should take its place [but Tkatchev and others] explained that the object of the revolutionary party should be, not the preparation of revolution in general, but the realization of it at the earliest possible moment . . .

    In accordance with the fashionable doctrine of evolution, the reconstruction of society on the tabula rosa might be left, it was thought, to the spontaneous action of natural forces . . . — Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th ed. (1910) [search "nihilism," "bolshevism"]

Our own "sixties" hippies, who imitated the Nihilists right down to the hair style and grubby fashions, were also divided into two camps. One camp wanted to immediately blow up government buildings. The other hippie camp included the disciples of Saul Alinsky, who had more subtle and patient tactics. Those hippies, and some of their younger admirers, have since wormed their way into positions of power in government and academania.

This brings us to 2011 and the current rebels. Horowitz says, "As a former radical, I am constantly asked how radicals could hate America and why they would want to destroy a society that compared to others is tolerant, inclusive and open . . . The answer to this question is that radicals are not comparing America to other real world societies. They are comparing America to the heaven on earth — the kingdom of social justice . . they think they are building . . .

"Unlike Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama never personally met Saul Alinsky. But as a young man, he became an adept practitioner of Alinsky's methods. In 1986, at the age of 23 and only three years out of Columbia University, Obama was hired by the Alinsky team to organize residents on the South Side . . .

"The group that Obama joined was part of a network that included the Gamaliel Foundation, a religious group that operated on Alinsky principles."

[This is one reason why I hinted that you may have to preach to your preacher.]


"Alinsky is the Sun-Tzu for today's radicals, his book a manual for their political war. As early as its dedicatory page, Alinsky provides revealing insight into the radical mind by praising Lucifer as the first rebel:

"'Lest we forget, an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical: from all our legends, mythology, and history . . 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."

- from Barack Obama's Rules for Revolution by David Horowitz

David Horowitz Freedom Center

PO Bx 55089

Sherman Oaks, CA 91499-1964

[ ]

© Curtis Dahlgren


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
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Curtis Dahlgren

Curtis Dahlgren is semi-retired in southern Wisconsin, and is the author of "Massey-Harris 101." His career has had some rough similarities to one of his favorite writers, Ferrar Fenton... (more)


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