C'MON NOW, ADMIT IT! AMERICA IS BECOMING A COMMUNIST STATE

April 4, 2013

Socialism is precisely the religion that must overwhelm Christianity. … In the new order, Socialism will triumph by first capturing the culture via infiltration of schools, universities, churches and the media by transforming the consciousness of society.” ~~Antonio Gramsci, Italian Marxist and major influence on Saul Alinsky and American Progressives

The American people will never knowingly adopt Socialism. But under the name of ‘liberalism’ they will adopt every fragment of the Socialist program, until one day America will be a Socialist nation, without knowing how it happened.” ~~Norman Thomas, Six time Presidential candidate on the Social party of America ticket

This is the fourth in a series of articles which traces the fall of the United States to a non-revolutionary Marxist movement called "Gramsci Communism."  As noted in the two previous columns, Italian Communist Antonio Gramsci was the philosophical mentor of Saul Alinsky, the father of Community Organizer who's Rules for Radicals is the book the Obama Administration follows to the tee.

But long before there was a Barack Obama on the political scene, Gramsci Communism was being slowly imposed on American society through a series of goals or steps in an almost unnoticed fashion. There were 45 goals which were uncovered by Cleon Skousen which I enumerated in last week's column.

Now the question comes as to how these 45 goals were accumulated. Was Antonio Gramsci a major source?

Consider these factors:

Between 1926 and 1936, during his years as a prisoner in Italy, Gramsci filled 32 notebooks (containing almost 3,000 pages) with his political and philosophical meditations on how Marxist theory could be applied practically to the conditions of advanced capitalism. The notebooks, which were smuggled out from Gramsci's prison cell, were eventually published in Italian several years after World War II, more than a decade after Gramsci's death. They were not published in English, however, until the 1970s.

In his writings, Gramsci accepted Marx's assertion that perpetual struggle between the ruling class and the subordinate working class was the driving mechanism that ultimately made social progress possible. But he rejected the notion that direct physical coercion by police and armies was the method of choice for achieving and maintaining victory in that struggle. Rather, Gramsci held that if a population at large could, for a period of time, be properly indoctrinated with a new “ideology”—specifically, a set of values, beliefs, and worldviews consistent with Marxist principles—a Marxist system could be sustained indefinitely and without coercion or force. In short, Gramsci held that Marxists needed to focus their efforts on gaining “hegemony” (i.e., control or dominion) over the core beliefs of non-Marxist societies; to change the population's understanding of what constitutes basic “common sense.”

Such a development, said Gramsci, would never occur naturally as a result of some inexorable, unseen, “historical laws” that Marx had accepted as axiomatic. Rather, Gramsci asserted that Marxism's potential for transforming society was wholly dependent upon the willful initiative of activists committed to using a “reversal strategy” designed to establish a “counter hegemony”—i.e., an alternative dominant worldview—in opposition to the existing capitalist framework.

Specifically, Gramsci called for Marxists to spread their ideology in a gradual, incremental, stealth manner, by infiltrating all existing societal institutions and embedding it, largely without being noticed, in the popular mind. This, he emphasized, was to be an evolutionary, rather than a revolutionary, process that, over a period of decades, would cause an ever-increasing number of people to embrace Marxist thought, until at last it achieved hegemony. Gramsci described this approach as a “long march through the institutions.”

Among the key institutions that would need to be infiltrated were the cinema and theater, the schools and universities, the seminaries and churches, the media, the courts, the labor unions, and at least one major political party. According to Gramsci, these institutions constituted society's “superstructure,” which, if captured and reshaped by Marxists, could lead the masses to abandon capitalism of their own volition, entirely without resistance or objection.

In this regard, Gramsci's views bore a great resemblance to those of the famed godfather of community organizing, Saul Alinsky, who likewise viewed revolution as a slow, patient process requiring the stealth penetration of existing institutions that could then be transformed from within.  This is because Alinsky attributes his worldview to two influences: Frank Nitti, Al Capone's "Enforcer" and who took over Capone's Empire after he was imprisoned in Federal penitentiary, and Antonio Gramsci.

Born to Russian-Jewish parents in Chicago in 1909, Saul Alinsky was a Communist/Marxist fellow-traveler who helped establish the tactics of infiltration -- coupled with a measure of confrontation -- that have been central to revolutionary political movements in the United States in recent decades. He never joined the Communist Party but instead, as David Horowitz puts it, became an avatar of the post-modern left.

Though Alinsky is rightfully understood to have been a leftist, his legacy is more methodological than ideological. He identified a set of very specific rules that ordinary citizens could follow, and tactics that ordinary citizens could employ, as a means of gaining public power. His motto was, “The most effective means are whatever will achieve the desired results.”

Alinsky studied criminology as a graduate student at the University of Chicago, during which time he became friendly with Capone and his mobsters. Ryan Lizza, senior editor of The New Republic, offers a glimpse into Alinsky’s personality: “Charming and self-absorbed, Alinsky would entertain friends with stories -- some true, many embellished -- from his mob days for decades afterward. He was profane, outspoken, and narcissistic, always the center of attention despite his tweedy, academic look and thick, horn-rimmed glasses.”

According to Lizza:

"Alinsky was deeply influenced by the great social science insight of his times, one developed by his professors at Chicago: that the pathologies of the urban poor were not hereditary but environmental. This idea, that people could change their lives by changing their surroundings, led him to take an obscure social science phrase—‘the community organization’--and turn it into, in the words of Alinsky biographer Sanford Horwitt, ‘something controversial, important, even romantic.’ His starting point was a near-fascination with John L. Lewis, the great labor leader and founder of the CIO. What if, Alinsky wondered, the same hardheaded tactics used by unions could be applied to the relationship between citizens and public officials?"

After completing his graduate work in criminology, Alinsky went on to develop what are known today as the Alinsky concepts of mass organization for power. In the late 1930s he earned a reputation as a master organizer of the poor when he organized the “Back of the Yards” area in Chicago, an industrial and residential ethnic neighborhood on the Southwest Side of the city, so named because it is near the site of the former Union Stockyards; this area had been made famous in Upton Sinclair's 1906 novel The Jungle. In 1940 Alinsky established the Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF), through which he and his staff helped “organize” communities not only in Chicago but throughout the United States. IAF remains an active entity to this day. Its national headquarters are located in Chicago, and it has affiliates in the District of Columbia, twenty-one separate states, and three foreign countries (Canada, Germany, and the United Kingdom).

By the late 1960s, the Black Power movement would drive Alinsky and his organizing crusades out of the projects in African-American neighborhoods, leaving him no choice but to shift his focus to white communities. For this purpose, he established the Citizens Action Program (CAP), in 1970. As Stanley Kurtz writes in his 2010 book Radical in Chief: "Alinsky was ... convinced that large-scale socialist transformation would require an alliance between the struggling middle class and the poor. The key to radical social change, Alinsky thought, was to turn the wrath of America’s middle class against large corporations."

In the Alinsky model, “organizing” is a euphemism for “revolution” -- a wholesale revolution whose ultimate objective is the systematic acquisition of power by a purportedly oppressed segment of the population, and the radical transformation of America’s social and economic structure. The goal is to foment enough public discontent, moral confusion, and outright chaos to spark the social upheaval that Marx, Engels, and Lenin predicted -- a revolution whose foot soldiers view the status quo as fatally flawed and wholly unworthy of salvation. Thus, the theory goes, the people will settle for nothing less than that status quo’s complete collapse -- to be followed by the erection of an entirely new system upon its ruins. Toward that end, they will be apt to follow the lead of charismatic radical organizers who project an aura of confidence and vision, and who profess to clearly understand what types of societal “changes” are needed.

As Alinsky put it: “A reformation means that the masses of our people have reached the point of disillusionment with past ways and values. They don’t know what will work but they do know that the prevailing system is self-defeating, frustrating, and hopeless. They won’t act for change but won’t strongly oppose those who do. The time is then ripe for revolution.”

“[W]e are concerned,” Alinsky elaborated, “with how to create mass organizations to seize power and give it to the people; to realize the democratic dream of equality, justice, peace, cooperation, equal and full opportunities for education, full and useful employment, health, and the creation of those circumstances in which men have the chance to live by the values that give meaning to life. We are talking about a mass power organization which will change the world … This means revolution.”

But Alinsky’s brand of revolution was not characterized by dramatic, sweeping, overnight transformations of social institutions. As Richard Poe puts it, “Alinsky viewed revolution as a slow, patient process. The trick was to penetrate existing institutions such as churches, unions and political parties.” He advised organizers and their disciples to quietly, subtly gain influence within the decision-making ranks of these institutions, and to introduce changes from that platform.

This was right out of Antonio Gramsci's notebooks. Next week, we will look at the implementation of of Alinsky's methodology, which necessitates the inclusion of the Communist goals we have enumerated. In a future article, I'll tie up the loose ends to prove that Barack Obama's socio-economic & political views are traceable back to Karl Marx through Antonio Gramsci and Saul Alinsky.


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