There are things throughout history that one can point to and say, “That changed everything.” Things like electricity, indoor plumbing and gunpowder.
Then there are others we can point to as simply upgrades or improvements to the original design. Things like fuel injection, the self-contained rifle cartridge or “Hot Shots! Part Deux.”
Barack Obama improved on Saul Alinsky’s teaching of community agitating – expanding it from a local to a national movement.
Many Alinsky disciples evidently feel the same way – that his local agitating and disorganizing philosophy can and should be played out on a grander, national and international stage.
Interestingly, what is today called community organizing by most everyone, Alinsky called agitating. But somewhere along the line, the name agitator was deemed too negative. Gee – I can’t imagine why. So the left did what the left often does. Don’t change the narrative – just the name. Community agitator magically became community organizer. Who could be against organizing a community or just organization in general? After all – we’ve been told this all our entire childhoods, that we need to be more organized.
To be more precise, Alinsky preached that an agitator’s job isn’t to organize, but to enter and already organized community, agitate to disorganize it and re-organize it to better achieve the agitator’s goal. It was to be done with a certain amount of civility. Years ago, self-avowed communist agitator Van Jones echoed that sentiment, saying: “I’m willing to forgo the cheap satisfaction of the radical pose for the deep satisfaction of radical ends.”