Jim Geraghty has an excellent piece in National Review Online called “The Alinsky Administration.”
Here’s the top of it:
Barack Obama never met Saul Alinsky, but the radical organizer’s thought helps explain a great deal about how the president operates.
Alinsky died in 1972, when Obama was 11 years old. But three of Obama’s mentors from his Chicago days studied at a school Alinsky founded, and they taught their students the philosophy and methods of one of the first “community organizers.” Ryan Lizza wrote a 6,500-word piece on Alinsky’s influence on Obama for The New Republic, noting, “On his campaign website, one can find a photo of Obama in a classroom teaching students Alinskian methods. He stands in front of a blackboard on which he has written ‘Relationships Built on Self Interest,’ an idea illustrated by a diagram of the flow of money from corporations to the mayor.”
In a letter to the Boston Globe, Alinsky’s son wrote that “the Democratic National Convention had all the elements of the perfectly organized event, Saul Alinsky style. . . . Barack Obama’s training in Chicago by the great community organizers is showing its effectiveness. It is an amazingly powerful format, and the method of my late father always works to get the message out and get the supporters on board. When executed meticulously and thoughtfully, it is a powerful strategy for initiating change and making it really happen. Obama learned his lesson well.” […]