Here comes the Alinskyite Right
David Gregory and Piers Morgan have both met the Alinskyite Right, and progressives in positions of power should take note. Both men are the targets of digital petition drives aimed at holding them to their own standards, and ridiculing them, invoking Rules 4 and 5 from Rules for Radicals:
4. "Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules." If the rule is that every letter gets a reply, send 30,000 letters. You can kill them with this because no one can possibly obey all of their own rules.
5. "Ridicule is man's most potent weapon." There is no defense. It's irrational. It's infuriating. It also works as a key pressure point to force the enemy into concessions.
This may be one of the first signs of the direction the conservative movement will take in President Obama's second term, and I take heart from the development. Conservatives have read and assimilated the lessons in Rules, and with left thoroughly in control of the institutions of media, education and culture, a lot of petards are going to get a lot of hoisting in the next four years. Social media distribution makes it possible for funny or dramatic events to flow around the usual media cofferdams.
At the time Alinsky wrote, there was still something of a conservative establishment among a few of the commanding heights of the economy, government, culture, and society. But since the 1960s, the left has grabbed control of education, the nonprofit sector, the arts and culture, and the Democratic Party. The Right feels, and actually is, powerless in most of these areas. Thus, conservatives are beginning to understand that we must emulate the (successful) tactics of the left, in leveraging our ability to influence the major institutions shaping our lives.
The great William Jacobson of Legal Insurrection links, and adds:
We saw it not only with Gregory and Morgan, but in the reaction to the publication of the home addresses and personal information of licensed, law-abiding gun owners by a NY newspaper. Rather than just complain, someone published equally personal information about the editors and reporters at the newspaper. I detest both tactics, but it's a matter of holding them to their own rules via Alinsky.
Do not expect any help from the mainstream conservative media on this. Many of them are circling the wagons around Gregory, refusing to recognize that such deference would not be accorded them by NBC much less MSNBC.