I've studied or worked on seven different college campuses during my career, and I remember times when I've encountered liberal elitists, those academics who are perpetually looking down their noses at the plebian masses, and making snide condescending remarks about the common folk who have to work for a living, how little they know about the world, history, politics, etc. I was a liberal myself in those days, but when I saw and heard that kind of condescending horseshit it always infuriated me.
Sorry, but that kind of thing still makes me mad because I feel like they are talking about me, my family. And about millions of other people who don't live in the liberal elitist bubble.
That's the thing about liberals. They profess to be on the side of the "working classes" but they have trouble hiding their contempt for them. Some of them don't even try to hide it.
I heard some of that liberal double think last night when I viewed a video of the Bill Moyers show in which he talked about how Newt Gingrich was trashing and running down that really great American, Saul Alinsky.
Because Moyers once worked for that intellectual giant Lyndon Johnson, and because he once talked to Joseph Campbell, he must think he's some kind of intellectual paragon and can lecture all of us illiterates on Saul Alinsky.
I've embedded the video below. If you view it, listen to Moyers as he sets up his defense of Alinsky at the beginning and listen to how he describes the Republican audiences who he says are buying into this.
Moyers is a pseudo intellectual liberal shill and he makes no attempt to hide his contempt for us. I suppose he's speaking to other liberal elitists who view Public TV; he's surely not trying to actually persuade people who don't disagree with him. (One of the first things you learn about argument/persuasion is that you have to respect your opponent's views enough to keep him listening to you; otherwise you're just ranting, which isn't intellectual at all.)
Moyers has utter disdain for these common uneducated Republicans and implies we are driven by prejudice in that we will react negatively just to Alinsky's name.
Moyers says we "don't know" who Alinsky is or what "socialism" is. And then, just in case we missed his point, he calls us "ignorant."
Bill Moyers Essay: Newt's Obesession with Saul Alinsky from BillMoyers.com on Vimeo.
Note to Bill Moyers:
I may not be a super smart liberal guy like you, but I do know what socialism is. The word is very broad and has multiple meanings but in general is used to refer to an anti-capitalist approach to economic issues and includes redistributive taxation and some form of social ownership of (as opposed to private ownership of) property. It's basically the system the Europeans have been using for several decades and which is now collapsing because of its inherent flaws.
Also, I have heard of Saul Alinsky. I've even read some of his book Rules for Radicals. I know you're a busy public television "journalist" so, in case you haven't read them, I've found a nice summary of them in the Union News.
You say he's not a communist, not a socialist, but a good American. Here's what he says in his own words:
Any revolutionary change must be preceded by a passive, affirmative, non-challenging attitude toward change among the mass of our people. They must feel so frustrated, so defeated, so lost, so futureless in the prevailing system that they are willing to let go of the past and change the future. This acceptance is the reformation essential to any revolution. To bring on this reformation requires that the organizer work inside the system, among not only the middle class but the 40 per cent of American families – more than seventy million people – whose income range from $5,000 to $10,000 a year [in 1971]. They cannot be dismissed by labeling them blue collar or hard hat. They will not continue to be relatively passive and slightly challenging. If we fail to communicate with them, if we don't encourage them to form alliances with us, they will move to the right. Maybe they will anyway, but let's not let it happen by default.
Notice that at the end, he says "if we fail to communicate with them...they will move to the right." This statement indicates that he is speaking from a far left, "revolutionary" position, not from the center (where most Americans are) or definitely not from anywhere on the right side of the political spectrum.
Apparently Mr. Moyers, by being dismissive of and condescending to the that "40 percent" of middle class American families and the "blue collar or hard hat" you are disregarding your hero Alinsky's advice.
But it's a little late anyway. Most of us down here in the flyover states have already moved to the right. Primarily because we have pretty good BS detectors and we can tell when someone is only pretending to be our friend to advance his own agenda.
By the way, I know Alinsky also said this: "You do what you can with what you have and clothe it in moral garments."
In other words, if being identified as a "socialist" or "communist" is detrimental to your movement, then say you are not either.
Like the old politician says, "if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it is a duck."
With feigned Sincerity,
Readers: Here's a fantastic short (5 min.) video of Alinsky sitting down with conservative icon William Buckley on Buckley's The Firing Line back in the day. I wish I could find the rest of it, but what we have is fun to watch.