This coming Monday, January 30, would be Saul Alinsky’s 108th birthday. Alinsky was a community organizer, perhaps best known here in Chicago for his work against the machine politicians Ed Kelly and Richard J. Daley, and around the country for his book Rules for Radicals (full text here). Studs says the book “show[s] how the anonymous people can find power through organization.” Alinsky has surged back into political culture recently because of Hillary Clinton’s connections to him; and recently, two members of Bernie Sanders’ campaign have authored Rules for Revolutionaries, an obvious tip of the hat.
Studs and Saul had known one another for decades by the time Saul joined him in the studio in 1962 to talk about Rules for Radicals. They end up having a conversation that is both philosophical and very practical. They ask questions that would likely feel very relevant to today’s protesters and march participants:
Who has the right to decide what is best?
Can we prioritize morality over basic human needs?
What happens once power has been achieved and demands have been acceded to?
Hear what “the organizer’s organizer” has to say about it all.