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Alinsky's Rules

Posted by betometro on March 3, 2011 at 11:17 PM Comments comments (1)

ES 375: Ecosocial Advocacy


In his book, Rules for Radicals: A Pragmatic Primer for Realistic Radicals, Alinsky recommended "power tactics" to solve the kinds of problems that organizers and stewards often encounter. "Tactics are those consciously deliberate acts by which human beings live with each other and deal with the world around them," wrote Alinsky.

1. Power is not only what you have but what the enemy thinks you have.

2. Never go outside the experience of your people. It may result in confusion, fear and retreat.

3. Wherever possible go outside the experience of the enemy. Here you want to cause confusion, fear and retreat.

4. Make the enemy live up to his/her own book of rules.

5. Ridicule is man's most potent weapon.

6. A good tactic is one that your people enjoy.

7. A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.

8. Keep the pressure on, with different tactics and actions and utilize all events of the period for your purpose.

9. The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.

10. The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition.

11. If you push a negative hard and deep enough it will break through into its counterside.

12. The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.

13. Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it and polarize it.

What is a 'Trick Negro'?

Posted by betometro on February 7, 2011 at 1:48 AM Comments comments (0)
MSNBC and the Post-Racial Critter
by BetoMetroDos

17 November 2010

Has anyone ever wondered: What is a trick negroe? Who needs a trick negroe? Who would want to be a trick negroe? Why is this trick negroe on my television?

I'm sure those questions hardly ever arise when the average non-black person watches MSNBC and Ron 'Critter' Cristy comes on to defend Dick Cheney, Rush or any other white right-tightened wingnut who has the nerve to say what they really think about the black/white racial divide in this country, (or about the first black President for that matter); except when one such as myself ponders the particulars which lie deeper than just below the surface. Who do you call to justify Rush Limbaugh's obvious hostility toward anyone darker than a paper bag? Who can detect the slightest bit of sensibility in the most outrageously bigoted notions of white superiority and a priori societal privilege while defending the white man who said it? Who would write a book titled 'Acting White' to mask the fact that, (acting as a black man), he spits in the face of countless generations of his own ancestors who died so that he might live here and now? And who does it with a straight face as if his life were somehow severely inconvenienced by the peculiarity of black culture and conventions and not so much enriched by same? Call 'Critter'. He's the man for the job.

Yes, he is not like the rest of us, but neither are most of us like him. I am not 'acting black' when I'm stopped on the street by a cop and asked to demonstrate my right to be there, nor am I feigning blackness when I bob my head to the squishy licks of a serious P-Funk joint, but I would be 'acting white' if I thought for a moment and fixed my lips to say that "Driving Miss Nancy" was not a racist, low-brow, unimaginative denigration of the truly heroic accomplishments of  Rep. James Clyburne and of the man himself. Or that the radioactive rodeo clown who made such a 'joke', (given his propensity for and long history of such 'humor'), was not attempting to racialize a pro forma political succession maneuver in order to fan the flames of racial division in this country as he has indeed always done; for it has made him well known, a lot of money and fully a third of the US population at large agrees with him.

Acting white is not the problem with 'Critter' and neither is it that black ingrates, incompetents and insurrectionists have been ruining the nation since the wrong side won the Civil War and Civil Rights legislation diminished the white righteousness and predominance that makes up "American Exceptionalism". Maybe he's serious and this is no act, but anyone who has lived through the lynchings, church bombings, fire-hosed equality-march dispersions, police dog maulings and even the murders of those who sought to achieve non-violent change here, (let alone the progeny of those who endured centuries of brutal chattel servitude), should know that there is no equality of pretext, context or subtext if you are black in this country. If you are black in this country and find yourself awash in stereotypical prejudicial notions held against you, you realize that you are being seen by many of your countrymen as merely an inconvenient anomaly of the world in which we live - either to be ignored and avoided or trodden under foot, locked-up and abased as being less than worth the effort it might take to get to know you.

This is the only negotiable zone of commonality where left and right seem to agree and the argument goes like this: The guy riding by in the car (who could barely speak English) didn't call me a nigger because I was black, it was a class-based insult and I just failed to distinguish the finer point of his animosity toward me. Its a good thing that there are those who are eager to point these subtleties out to me. I might have otherwise concluded that, though he may have been an undocumented immigrant to this country, yelling racist slurs against me within five miles of the hospital in which I was born, he felt that he was better than me not because he was white unlike me, but because I was black and not like him. A lesser being for fault of genetic predetermination, however, that would have been presumptuous of me wouldn't it.

I don't expect too many people - black or white (or otherwise) to agree with what I am saying here or approve of the manner that I have chosen to make my points, but since racism seems to evade scrutiny of the larger, whiter segments of this society, unless cited in the words and deeds of blacks or other people of color, I've chosen here to be brazenly bigoted in my own approach in order to solicit the proper response. Truth be told, everyone better get a clue because the day of denial over racial matters is done; [furthermore, the antipathy that the tea-baggers, Republicans - white supremacists all - exhibit toward the President are not merely over matters of policy or budgetary deficiencies. Those are merely convenient proxies for the basis of their true discontent]. However, there is no lack of apologists, (left and right), who would wrap words around the entire continental US to maintain that it is rather than admit what is really going on and run the risk of setting themselves at odds with those who refuse to acknowledge the verity of it.

Left and right, the discourse is neither honest, healthy or predicate to resolve illuminating the bare-boned racism of these malcontents, but, unless someone pipes up and shouts "I don't care if he did whistle at a white woman, I won't help you lynch him", we have yet to see the inevitable end to their seething hatred - and even then there will be those who resent having to watch a State Funeral on every channel for the assassinated former Chief Executive - (something about the diminished dignity of having him lie in state in the Capitol Rotunda). That is what's really at stake and the sooner we face those dire extant possibilities the better.

What is  a Trick Negroe? A trick negroe is a black man (or woman) - indeed any non-white person - who does for the white man that which he cannot do for himself i.e. blow him while he whistles dixie. Who needs a trick negroe? Anyone who is too busy whistling dixie to tend to his own oral self pleasure. Who would want to be a trick negroe? A self-loathing, fish-lipped magpie who would rather live (and die) on his knees with something more than just a lie on his tongue. Why is this trick negroe on my television? Because the network who pays him for his 'contributions' (MSNBC) needs one so that it might appear that there is a legitimate point and counterpoint to any particular issue at dispute; especially issues involving a racial component. A trick negroe does negroe tricks for the fun and enjoyment of his (usually) white handlers.

The issues at dispute here are these: a) the increasing frequency at which the black (indeed any non-white) physiognomy, culture and living model is routinely becoming the object of openly racist hatred, ridicule and caricature in the popular media, b) how the mainstream media, right and left is perpetuating and making excuses for it and c) what the likely outcome of this trend will be if not corrected soon - I'm only describing what I am seeing and I leave it to others to figure out what to do about it. One side is becoming increasingly more strident in their use of it and the other side is becoming more tolerant of its manifestations when confronted with it; only raising objection when someone, (usually black) informs someone else (usually white) that, were it not for the racial differences between the parties, certain people would not be so animated in their opposition to whatever the question at hand is.

Does MSNBC get a gay, lesbian or trans-gendered person to defend homophobic bullies, perverse comedic antagonisms or discriminatory legislative enactments when those matters arise? No. Do they bring on a woman to justify spousal battery, date rape or familial abandonment? No. Do they bring on a Latino to validate Anchor-Baby beatdowns, English only ballot measures, or the border fence militia mania? No. So why is it then acceptable to bring on such a cock-eyed, inbred, coddled revanchist Republican shill who happens to be black to defend every babbling bigot in each day's news cycle? Is the presence of a nominal black man arguing purely facile contrary drivel really that necessary? No. Is there something more to this game that goes far beyond the players involved? At long last I have to say: Yes, there is.

MSNBC has been running this crap so predictably and for so long that it has now become less about the stupidity of the negroes involved than the network's own apparent hidden agenda. After all, when it comes to racial diversity, the absence of a regular black anchor person headlining an opinion program in their prime-time lineup is what really must be questioned here. (Whatever happened to Allyson Stewart anyway?) Sure, they bring on the usual non-confrontational politicians, journalists and academics to spar over Democratic, GOP and Tea-bagger inspired political faux pas, but they are only there to respond to pre-programmed thematic contingencies with no room for divergent analysis (or when needed) hostile refutation of obviously fraudulent claptrap - lest they appear to be overly emotional and threatening to the greater white cultural norm that the network's pro-v-con discussion format is engineered to protect and propagate. Call the lying S.O.S. exactly what he is: a lying S.O.S.!

Certainly there are black people who resist racist verbal abuse (whether openly declared as such or cloaked in coded dog-whistle language) wherever it occurs - but they'll never get a t.v. show of their own on MSNBC. There are also blacks who are less likely to assert their own negritude even when challenged for fear of losing their perceived advantage among their white media counterparts - but they'll never get a t.v. show of their own on MSNBC. Then there are those who cannot detect the slightest hint of bigotry unless it is being thrust upon them by another black person. So traumatic was this to Critter's psyche and significant enough in his life story that he had to write a whole book about it and spend his entire televised post governmental career defending bigots, war crimes and white skin privilege. And this is the guy who gets more t.v. airtime than Halle Berry. The only reason he is there is because he's black, (at least he looks black) and it can't be possible for an honest man to hold a civil discussion with him when he does not, cannot, or refuses to see his own tokenism and what he is being used for in the broader context. He poses in opacity as a guise, and we are not bound to ignore his transparent rouse and lend his specious arguments any more credence than is due just because he's black - or at least as long as it suits him to be black.

As long as the universe of black commentators and their contingent commentary is continually being defined, refined and confined (by others who have their own best interests at heart) to the meager dregs of ill fitting red, white and blue slave-jacketed, buck-dancing, handkerchief-headed, skinning-and-grinning melon seed spitting coons, no real progress is either practical or possible. The true diversity of black opinion, analysis and debate will indeed continue to fade into a pasty, bland, oatmeal-like lukewarm lumpy mass bearing no visual appeal or nutritional value. We starve whether we eat it or not.

Where are we to turn? BET? Certainly not. The available talent pool there has become so shallow that, between segments of pistol slinging pornographic nursery rhymes, cute booty shakedown crotch shots and cell-block-four prison documentary shankfests, its black 'journalism' had long ago died in its infancy due to the Johnson family's own profit motive which precluded consolidation of a black oriented broadcast news outlet free from market controls over content and compliant editorial constraints before they sold it to become the wealthiest negroes in the country. There are real issues to be debated in real time here and both 'conservative' and 'progressive', blacks (and others) have chosen to evade the really sticky areas where true cohesion lies, because, as it is currently devised, they themselves do not have our own best interests at heart. They are paid to maintain the status quo, quid pro quo, reducto ad absurdum, ad nauseum.

MSNBC takes every opportunity to regulate the flow of information and does so in carefully choreographed steps, race-baiting diatribes notwithstanding in this instance. One guest comes on to bring an issue up for debate and another comes on to play either the brigand to throw a tantrum and deflect the matter away from its logical import, or to play the fool and muddle the complexities of the matter in order to diminish regard for those who would hold similar opinions in the minds of the general public. The art of the exercise is to run out the clock so that the host can cut in and say, 'Sorry, but we'll have to leave it there', while one's lips are still flapping. No question is ever truly resolved and the competing sides recede to their respective corners with a wink and a nod only to return to the ring at another time for another bout while the cacophony intensifies drowning out reason and intellectual integrity for the sake of dueling befuddlement and the ritualistic mental abuse of the viewer.

We, as news consumers deserve better, should demand better and should not rest until we have better. One may surmise, by the advertisers sponsoring this network and these shows, that without these comedies of shallow debate interspersed with bottomless buffoonery and blustering bio-sludge to hold our attention, we'd never get to find out about the latest FDA approved erectile dysfunction drug, web-based day trading scams, inordinately expensive new car or ever costlier HMO 'health coverage' plan designed to wrest the last remaining penny from our cold dead clenched fists. There are those who cannot bring themselves to participate in a general boycott of a commercial entity in order to effect a desired change in policy, practice or process, but if that is what it takes, let this be my opening salvo. Unless better is forthcoming, let's allow it (or even force it) to get much worse for the sake of the better that must be yet to come.

Those of us who do not ruefully mourn the mangled Confederate Civil War dead lying in the battlefields who had fought to destroy this Union, would not wish to return to a time when no black man had rights that any white man was bound to respect. Nor do we wish to revisit the day when death was the only liberty for which the slave or indentured servant could reasonably long. We secure unto ourselves the blessings of liberty, dignity and civil rights we as living human beings are due - and guaranteed us by Constitutional decree - only by asserting it when we are denied it, defending it where it is threatened, and defeating those, by any means necessary, who attempt to destroy it. There are no mealy-mouthed platitudes or wimpy evasive circumlocutions which will suffice as a reasonable substitute for this resolute proclamation: We shall overcome! If not by singing, then by swinging! - Beto


Posted by betometro on February 7, 2011 at 1:41 AM Comments comments (0)
12 November 2010 
                                                                             Santa Ana, CA

So the new rift dividing the informing class and those who are informed by them is the 
  making and refuting of comparative equality between information outlets - left and right, 
  and what passes these days for information-as-a-commodity whereby this citezenry is 
  to be either wisened or worsened. One side is handing out grapes in a bowl (some are 
  plump and juicy and some are spoiled and overripe if not rotten) but the other side is 
  handing out pits, stems and dirt clods. The true distinction is between news and 
  propaganda. Information is neither good or bad, wrong or right - it is either false or it is 
  true. Those who rely upon truth may use it to their benefit or ignore it to their own peril 
  when called upon for citation. Those who rely on falsities which reinforce their prejudices 
  and ignorance deserve only ridicule and shame.
  The flash-point for the current debate is The Daily Show's Jon Stewart and how he sees 
  little if any difference (as an example) between a nationwide tea party town-hall 
  disruption campaign against Democratic representatives, [motivated by organized 
  lobbying groups], and a series of Code Pink direct actions against a sitting President 
  (prosecuting illegal wars and propagating illegitimate legal theories for their justification) 
  and against his wars admittedly because he wanted to be a 'war president'.
  Of course the nation is polarized. Both of the above instances were cited to illuminate the critical issues over which there 
  would be rational debate in a civil society, but they are in no way equal as to tactical 
  efficiency, severity of what is being protested and the necessity of such action in this 
  country at this time given these circumstances. Code Pink was pointing out that the man 
  sitting in the White House was contemporaneously prosecuting an illegal war, torturing 
  prisoners of that war and lying at every turn about it - they were putting themselves at 
  risk of arrest and prosecution to end a series of practices which if done at all constitute 
  serious criminality at the highest levels of government. Tea baggers were protesting the 
  government's attempt to provide them (indeed all citizens) with a health care program 
  which if done correctly would have cost them very little or even save them money once 
  enacted - they vehemently opposed the state's well-meaning legislative act and militated 
  against their own best interests.

  These weren't the only similarities that Mr. Stewart saw in such dim light, but indicative 
  of how, in the search for truth, one can hold a lamp out, appear to bear light that others 
  may see, and remain, (on this issue at least), in total darkness himself. George W. Bush 
  was and is a war criminal and needs to be (if not prosecuted for it) - reminded of it at 
  every given occasion. Code Pink has only helped to illustrate that fact. Health care 
  coverage is a necessity of modern life and the costs - if left unchecked - threaten to 
  bankrupt us all including the healthy. Tea baggers, because they were organized and 
  brought to a boil by persons, media and political institutions whose only interest was in 
  maintaining the status quo on behalf of big money donors to the GOP, only illuminated 
  their own stupidity and the nation would have been much better served if they weren't so 
  blissfully ignorant of what they were protesting and whose interests would be served 
  should they be successful.
  If a soldier fires on both sides in a war, a player puts the ball into the goal at both ends 
  of the court, or a runner cuts across the field and claims victory by crossing the 
  starting line last, good order and discipline would have that soldier, player or runner off 
  the team as a rule because he cannot be relied upon to perform the mission to which he 
  has been assigned. True, you get your comedy from one guy, your news from another 
  and your vitriol from yet another, but, just because those lines have gotten blurred in 
  today's media culture is no justification to have them muddled in your own mind. The 
  standard deviation is between those who would move us all forward (or at least say they 
  would) and those who would have us all retreat to a time when only a select few could lay 
  claim to the promises of liberty, equality and justice (even while denying that that is 
  what they are up to).

  If a man is being knifed by a masked asailant, it is reasonable to assume a crime is being 
  committed. The one with the knife is not being victimized by the one who is being 
  stabbed. There is no moral or legal equivalency demanding anything other than that the 
  crime be stopped and that the criminal be prosecuted. The man being stabbed need not 
  appeal to the better nature of the slasher nor is it not a sign of intellectual integrity to 
  give credence to the side doing the bloodletting, while the other side is still being bled.

  Mr. Stewart has been on television for close to thirty years off and on, comparatively 
  well paid and does not deserve to be hailed as a hero or derided as a scoundrel unless 
  that is the role he chooses to play at the time. He is, after all effecting a portrayal of 
  whatever role his writers have crafted for him. When he is not 'acting' he then is 
  submitting his words and efforts to popular evaluation and critical analysis. At his rally, 
  he sought to "restore sanity" by speaking of that which we as citizens have in common 
  with each other regardless of political affiliation. On his show, he seeks to coax laughter 
  from his audience over the parodied 'newsiness' of the show's format and the 
  absurdities as he sees them of our public discourse. But, as a cultural 'player' he cannot 
  claim neutrality and ideological purity at the same time. For his rally, he should be 
  applauded. For his show, he should be commended, but for farting in the elevator while 
  bemoaning the foul atmosphere, he should have his ass plugged for lack of humility, 
  decency and honesty. That would be true equivalency being objectively and subjectively 
  consistent showing neither fear nor favor. - Beto

And Furthermore...

Posted by betometro on February 7, 2011 at 1:40 AM Comments comments (0)
Enmity, Enemies and Semantical Integrity
by Beto Mertro Dos
27 November 2010 Santa Ana, CA

So Republicans are all upset that the Pres. has called them 'enemies' in the current political climate as if it were indelicate, inaccurate or even inappropriate. Isn't that what someone who holds relentless, unabashed, implacable enmity towards another is rightfully called? They are, for absence of a better term, this man's ENEMIES - his sworn enemies who desire nothing other than his failure and removal from office. Only a fool would believe that the GOP hold nothing but contempt for this President.
No force can mediate the gulf of animosity that they have repeatedly demonstrated toward the man, his policies, his words and even his birth. They will of course vehemently deny that it is on account of his race, it is only of side benefit that he is of African ancestry.
This weekend on a CSPAN program entitled "Civility in Public Discourse" Monica Crowley, seemingly oblivious to the endless cackling of paranoid right-wing talkers accusing this President of everything from being foreign born, having communist sympathies and (at the same time) fascist tendencies, running secret detention facilities for rebellious white citizens, could only cite this one word and protesters calling GWB a war criminal (which he recently admitted being) as indicative of the deterioration of 'civility' as she sees it. If she had horns, utters, chewed cud and calved in the field, it would then be appropriate to call her a cow, truth would be an absolute defense and all the protestations of those who claim to be offended by it, would appear to be as foolish as they should in this current case.
But why is it even an issue that this President has clearly and correctly identified the opposition (and those who conduct themselves as such) as his own - our own - manifest enemies? Those who should be righteously outraged by even the insinuation of comity among the contending political classes of the day, under such conditions, have abdicated truth for expediency and permitted the perennial aggressors to feign insult and injury for the sake of 'civility'.
Some Democrats and many 'progressives' seem equally invested in this President's failure to rectify the floundering economy, re-establish a functional rule of law and rein in the imperial dogs of war let loose by the previous Head of State. Though for different reasons, they are in concert denigrating this man's sincerity, ability and prospective legacy to preclude the possibility of a second term in office. Even though they have not been read into, and therefore cannot possibly conceive of what 'National Security Protocols' really entails or what real choices exist on the table for consideration. For those on the right, he's too strident - making radical adjustments to the national posture and distorting the 'American Exceptionalist' paradigm. For those on the left, he's a milquetoast bojangles-like caricature unworthy of the mantle thrust upon 'real' historic civil rights giants who were willing to die for meager morsels of progress - and this solely because he has not done anything yet to provoke the sniper's ire, attention, and deadly devotion.
Those who are frustrating any resolution to the common difficulties that we collectively face are not only this President's enemies, but they are yours, mine, and even their own very worst enemies and they don't realize exactly what's at stake. They should not be hailed or spoken of as being thoughtful, clever or beneficial to any particular party, entity or community of interest in this country today. They are the bitter remnants of times where congenial disputes between the ruling elite drew only lines between themselves and the outlandish rabble they were ostensibly elected to represent so as to maintain their own place in the hierarchy of personal relevancy; disputes exclusively among wealthy white men for the sake of preserving the exclusivity of white men's wealth and for the conventional legislative subjection of all others to them.
The bold struggle then was to expand the prospects of democracy and include as citizens others in the national patrimony being precluded by no statutory authority among free people. The truly heroic among us now - in this current age - are cast in the unlikely role of having to advise pragmatism, recommend patience and preach restraint of action because 'progress' is achieved step by miniscule step if ever at all. At times gaining, losing and then regaining lost ground. Set against this model of true progress are those who resist by throwing their lot in with others who are reticent to any change - large or small, or those who are so ambitious for such great leaps and bounds in policy that its shear scale outweighs its practicality. They are the dastardly, deviant and devilish below who chant "Jump! Jump!, Jump!" to the man leaning out the window trying to rescue the wayward baby on the ledge which they themselves cannot see. One wonders if they would still beg destruction of the child if they only knew he was out there crawling toward oblivion and how close he was to the edge. - Beto

Beck's Odd Analogy

Posted by betometro on September 20, 2010 at 7:39 PM Comments comments (0)

So Beck has compared abortion to slavery ergo blacks to fetuses hence I twitlonger in response... I had no idea that someone was actually forcing slaveowners by law, against their will and better judgment to own the bodies, lives and issue of those slaves in perpetuity lest he be smitten. THERE IS NO COMPARISON worthy of intelligent debate to be made here. Slaves were sold into bondage to extract the bounty for profit from a stolen land and exploited until death. Even after the incoming shipment of slaves was outlawed in 1808, slaves were still being imported like plows, wagons and bicycles - (OK, cattle, mules and oxen) for sixty years. Holding one against the other as a means of making a petty political point is folly, madness and truly dangerous - Slavery was a crime against all humanity! Against living human beings their ancestors and their descendants. Abortion is at worst a matter of personal conscience between the woman in question, her mate and at variance with whatever notion of an 'after-death' loving or vengeful God in which she happens to believe. Even if she believes in NO God, no man should tell her HIS God forces her hand. Zealots, carnival barkers and side show scam artists notwithstanding. It is her choice alone - Beto

Polls, Polling & Pollsters

Posted by betometro on September 20, 2010 at 7:34 PM Comments comments (0)

We ALL knew from word go that TP extremists were in fact rejiggered republicans and that they'll follow the elephant with the biggest dung trail in any event. This election is not a referendum on anything other than vapid conventional thought, which your chosen pundits purvades by the ton. This election is only about one simple idea - Whoever gets the most voters to the polls (not to the pollsters) wins. If #dems can't get their voters out then they lose. If the other side says they've got a plan to move the earth further away from the sun to cancel climate change, they'll still only command the same 31% of the electorate. Motivated by the fear they refuse to name, they need no encouragement. We're moving foreward and they're attempting to nullify election 2008 and take us back to the 30's. It's 2010 tell them they're wrong, wrong, wrong! Game the theory out and give them no room for confidence - Beto

In reply to the daily Kos

BetoBlog is here NOW!!!

Posted by betometro on September 12, 2010 at 7:41 PM Comments comments (0)

     Here it is. Sunday September 12, 2010 I'm now writing in real time the Beto Metro thoughtstream. Be not alarmed, it's only in my head. - Beto

Spooks v Grunts Afghanistan

Posted by betometro on October 29, 2009 at 4:52 AM Comments comments (1)

Spies are resisting the militarist's downward pressure on the poppy vein - result, military, DEA  and civilian deaths, a drug-fueled underground arms race and a stealth economic monopoly dictating foreign and domestic policy = quagmire.


future drift

Posted by betometro on August 18, 2009 at 5:11 AM Comments comments (2)

Sharp turns ahead.