Saul Alinsky

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Posted by Julia from ( on Wednesday, January 22, 2003 at 2:50AM :

He wrote about the difference between
liberals and radicals in "reveille for
radicals." I (sadly) see myself in the liberal paradigm
and i see fred in the radical paradigm...i'm
not trying to characterize anyone (as i have done
in the past) but i think Alinsky's observations
are very , very, very, very accurate.

"Liberals regard themselves as well informed and
well balanced. They refer to radicals as "cranks". They, forget
however, that the definition of a crank is
an object that makes revolutions.

"Liberals, in common with many conservatives,
lay claim to the precious quality of
impartiality, of cold objectivity, and to a sense of
mystical impartial justice which enables
them to view both sides of an issue. Since there are always
at least two sides to every question and all
justice on one side involves a certain degree
of injustice to the other side, liberals
are hesitant to act. Their opinions are studded
with 'but on the other hand.' [that's me!!!!!!!]
Caught on the horns of this dilemma they are
paralyzed into immobility [this is me again :( ]
they become utterly incapable of action. they
discuss and discuss and end in disgust [this
is totally parhadian writing. do you guys
see this as well?]

"Liberals charge radicals with passionate
partisanship. To this accusation the radical's
jaw tightens as he snaps, "guilty! we are
all partisan for the people. Furthermore, we know that all
people are partisan. The only nonpartisan
people are those who are dead. You too are partisan -
if not for the people, then for whom?" [this is
absolutely fred's words right here..]

"Liberals utter bold words at meetings: they strut,
grimace belligerently, and then issue a
weasel-worded statement "which has tremendous
implications, if read between the lines." [this
is me!! :( ] They endlessly pass resoulutions
and endlessly do nothing. They sit calmly, dispassionately
studying the issue; judging both sides; they sit and sit still.
The radical does not sit frozen by cold
objectivity. He sees injustice and strikes
at it with hot passion. He is a man of decision
and action. There is a saying that the difference
between a liberal and a radical is that the liberal is
one who walks out of the room when the argument
turns into a fight.

"Liberals protest;radicals rebel. Liberals
become indignant, radicals become fighting
mad and go into action. Liberals do not
modify their personal lives and what they
give to a cause is a small part of their
lives; radicals give themselves to the cause.
Liberals give and take oral arguments, radicals
give and take the hard, dirty, bitter way
of life. Liberals frequently achieve high
places of respectability, ranging from the
Supreme Court to the Congress; the names of
radicals are rarely enscribed in marble
but burn eternally in the hearts of man. Liberals
have tener beliefs and are filled with
repugnance at the grime, the sordidness,
the pain, the persecution and the heartbreak
of battle; radicals have tough convictions
which are calloused by the rough road of
direct action....Liberals dream dreams; radicals
build the world of men's dreams."

-- Julia
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