Training for RADICALS: The Industrial Areas Foundation and the Midwest Academy

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FIRST THIS:

The “community organizer” training Obama received in the mid-1980s, and that he continues to praise today as central to how he will govern if elected (as) president, came from the Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF). As John Judis remarked in the New Republic (“Creation Myth: What Barack Obama Won’t Tell You about His Community Organizing Past,” Sept. 10, 2008): “Obama the politician is a direct descendant of Obama the [IAF] organizer—that he has carried the practices and principles of community organizing into his campaign, and would carry them into the White House as well.”

The Obama candidacy is therefore an effort to elect the first-ever IAF-trained organizer into the presidency. But what does that mean? The IAF is a national organization founded in Chicago by radical activist Saul Alinsky and shaped, after Alinsky’s death in 1972, by Ed Chambers, who set up a training program to vastly increase the number of organizers.

The word “radical” is much overused, but in the IAF’s case it fits. “Radical” means, “getting to the root,” and Alinsky wanted to get to the root of, and indeed uproot, America’s cultural values and political system. Thus Alinsky’s famous dedication to his book Rules for Radicals:

Lest we forget at least an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical: from all our legends, mythology, and history (and who is to know where mythology leaves off and history begins—or which is which), the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom—Lucifer.

Alinsky, who had no apparent commitment to any Biblical religion, was here a bit tongue-in-cheek. But even if his invocation of Lucifer is symbolic, it matters: Symbols convey power, as does the destruction of powerful symbols.

To understand the IAF and its guiding vision during the years that Obama received his “best education,” there’s no better source than Jim Rooney’s Organizing the South Bronx, a study sponsored and published by the State University of New York. This scholarly book examines the IAF’s nationwide “community organizer” planning and training program of the mid-to-late 1980s—the program Obama learned and that he still praises today—using its activities among churches in the South Bronx as an example of the IAF’s approach to community organizing.

William Ayers, the unrepentant 1960s Weather Underground terrorist bomber and contemporary Obama associate, who to this day allows himself to be photographed while trampling on an American flag, praised Rooney’s work on the back cover: “This is an outstanding book—well-written, clearly organized, engaging, interesting, important.”

Rooney attended an IAF training session in July 1989, and he details what the standard IAF training included in the years that Barack Obama became an IAF organizer (1985 and 1986).Organizing the South Bronx reveals that the goals and strategies of Obama’s IAF include:

  • “IAF leaders are brazenly explicit about their appetite for power.” (p. 222)
  • “Once you have power, you can afford to be nice.” (p. 226)
  • “To wean [churches] from fulfilling traditional expectations.” (p. 223)
  • “To energize [a pastor the IAF wanted to recruit], the first thing they did at those meetings was to begin conspicuously with a prayer.” (p. 99)
  • “You need diverse sources of funds, so that if [one church in an IAF-inspired coalition] want[s] to pull out our money, fine, we still have Episcopal money; if they want to pull out, then we’ve got Lutheran money. Plus, the fact that over three years we have put over $150,000 of our own money in the bank. So they can all take a big flying [expletive], I don’t care.” (p. 232)
  • “There is no nice way to bring about change. All change comes through pressure and threats.” (p. 226)
  • “Increase militancy by polarizing the situation, by identifying the enemy, and by developing the situation in terms of good guys and bad guys.” (p. 89)
  • “It is absolutely essential to select a ripe target [a person] and build animosity toward him or her.” (p. 228)
  • “A target has to be selected and mercilessly zeroed in on.” (p. 228)
  • The person selected is to be “targeted as a stock villain, a lackey of the corrupt political establishment.” (p. 228)
  • When a target has “become too shopworn to continue to light up anyone’s emotional switchboard,” it is necessary to choose new people to target “as action lightning rods.” (p. 228)
  • “All IAF organizers take huge delight in planning the drama of confronting authorities. Perhaps it is their ecclesiastical backgrounds, with its loving attention to rituals and ceremonies, but clearly their enthusiasm for the details and rich symbolism of staged events is irrepressible.” (p. 85)
  • [New York Mayor Koch:] “I had the feeling I was in some Nuremberg stadium. There was a military band. There were more than 1,000 people, chanting. They were thumping standards on the floor. It was like mass hysteria and very militant.” (p. 86) [Do we not see here a model for Obama’s Greek-columned, fireworks-enhanced stadium acceptance speech?]

IAF organizers like Obama were thus trained to target individuals for hate and denunciation, to exploit the organizational benefits of having enemies, and to pursue “justice” by creating conflict and confrontation. Personal targeting and scapegoating became a central organizing principle for IAF-trained community organizers, instigated by Alinsky’s lieutenant and successor Ed Chambers. Rooney makes clear that the IAF is brutally cynical about the constant need for fresh victims. Obama’s IAF thus made it official policy that political opponents were to be turned into personal enemies (or “ripe targets”).

We are presently seeing this “politics of vilification” by members of the Left in their targeted hate against Sarah Palin, who is a personal victim of IAF-style programs that build animosity against their political opponents.

LINK

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***ADD Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, and Rep. Michelle Bachmann to the leftist’s attack list**

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THEN ADD THIS: MIDWEST ACADEMY

Description: Training organization for various left-wing causes, led by long-time Democratic Party flak Heather Booth.

Trained Peter Altman, executive director of Texas Fund for Energy and Environmental Education, in grassroots activism tactics – being applied in the anti-Exxon Mobil campaign.

In its own words: “The Midwest Academy offers five day training sessions for leaders and staff of citizen and community groups. The Academy is one of the nation’s oldest and best known schools for community organizations, citizen organizations and individuals committed to progressive social change.”

Board of Directors


HEATHER BOOTH, CHAIR OF BOARD

ROBERT CREAMER, DIRECTOR
JACKIE KENDAL, PRESIDENT
PAUL BOOTH, DIRECTOR
NANCY SHIER, DIRECTOR
ETHEL KLEIN, DIRECTOR
JACKY GRIMSHAW, SEC. TREAS.

Background:

Midwest Academy was founded by Heather Booth, Chicagoan whose activist career began in the Mississippi Summer civil rights projects in 1964. She returned to Chicago and organized an early woman’s group in 1967. She founded the Midwest Academy in 1973 to provide training for organizers in neighborhood organizations.


Her husband, Paul Booth, was a founding member of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) in the early 1960s, and was president of Chicago’s Citizen Action Program formed in 1969 by organizer trainees from Saul Alinski’s Industrial Areas Foundation.

The Midwest Academy and IAF worked together on CAP’s campaigns. In 1977, Heather Booth got together with William Winpisinger, president of the International Association of Machinists and William Hutton of the National Council of Senior Citizens.

In 1978, the leaders of about 70 labor, citizen, senior, and farm organizations met in Washington, D.C. to found the Citizens/Labor Energy Coalition (CLEC).

In 1979, five state groups met in Chicago to form a national federation, Citizen Action. The founding organizations were:

Oregon Fair Share
Massachusetts Fair Share
Illinois Public Action Council
Connecticut Citizen Action Coalition
Ohio Public Interest Campaign
Heather Booth and Ira Arlook (of Ohio Public Interest Campaign) were co-directors until 1988 when Arlook became sole director.

In 1990 Booth became director of the Coalition for Democratic Values, a partisan organization of leading far-left Democrats, formed as a counterweight to the centrist Democratic Leadership Council.

In 1993 Booth took a job as training director with the Democratic National Committee, also using her contacts to solicit endorsements of Clinton administration policies from interest groups.

In 2000, Booth became executive director of NAACP’s National Voter Fund, where she remains.

Heather Booth also joined with activists in 1999 to revive the defunct Citizen Action as USAction, where she now serves as co-chair.

Grants to Midwest Academy:

Foundation Name: Charles Stewart Mott Foundation
Abstract: To train additional organizers, develop advanced organizer training, translate curriculum materials into Spanish, and work with college students to develop their leadership and organizing skills
Amount: $200,000 Year Authorized: 2000
Duration: 2-year grant

Foundation Name: The Retirement Research Foundation
Abstract: For Training and Technical Assistance for Senior Advocacy Organizations
Amount: $216,300 Year Authorized: 2000

Foundation Name: H. W. Buckner Charitable Residuary Trust
Amount: $10,000 Year Authorized: 1999

Foundation Name: Woods Fund of Chicago
Amount: $75,000 Year Authorized: 1999

Foundation Name: The Arca Foundation
Abstract: To further work of training progressive organizers in social change work
Amount: $10,000 Year Authorized: 1998

Foundation Name: Open Society Institute
Abstract: For drug policy conference
Amount: $10,000 Year Authorized: 1997

Foundation Name: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
Abstract: For general operations
Amount: $50,000 Year Authorized: 1997

Foundation Name: Energy Foundation
Abstract: For continued support for public education on benefits of energy efficiency and renewable energy within Illinois utility restructuring debate
Amount: $15,000 Year Authorized: 1998

Foundation Name: The Retirement Research Foundation
Foundation State: IL Geographic Focus: FL, IA, IL, IN, KY, MI, MO, WI
Abstract: For scholarships for senior citizen organizations
Amount: $93,400 Year Authorized: 1998

Foundation Name: Energy Foundation
Abstract: For public education on benefits of energy efficiency and renewable energy within Illinois utility restructuring debate
Amount: $20,000 Year Authorized: 1997

Foundation Name: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
Abstract: For general operations
Amount: $50,000 Year Authorized: 1996

Foundation Name: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
Abstract: For youth initiative, which trains young people for careers as organizers in community and public interest organizations
Amount: $50,000 Year Authorized: 1994

Foundation Name: Woods Fund of Chicago
Abstract: For Summer Organizing Institute that recruits, trains and places college students in Chicago community organizing groups engaged in issues campaigns
Amount: $12,500 Year Authorized: 1994

Foundation Name: Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation, Inc.
Abstract: For community organizing training for grassroots environmental leaders and organizers in Southeast and Southwest
Amount: $10,000 Year Authorized: 1993

Foundation Name: Woods Charitable Fund, Inc.
Abstract: For consultation with Chicago Rehab Network and member organizations to expand organizing and policy impact on issues of affordable housing
Amount: $10,000 Year Authorized: 1993

Foundation Name: Foundation for Deep Ecology
Abstract: For Save America’s Forests
Amount: $10,000 Year Authorized: 1992

Foundation Name: Wieboldt Foundation
Abstract: For Summer Organizing Institute, training project placing interns in community organizations to work on affordable housing campaign
Amount: $10,000 Year Authorized: 1992

Foundation Name: The Retirement Research Foundation
Abstract: To provide leadership development training for leaders of senior organizations
Amount: $30,310 Year Authorized: 1992

Foundation Name: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
Abstract: For Student Trainer-Training Program
Amount: $47,000 Year Authorized: 1991

Foundation Name: Woods Charitable Fund, Inc.
Abstract: For development of leaders and staff of Dearborn and Lathrop Homes
Amount: $12,000 Year Authorized: 1988

Foundation Name: Woods Charitable Fund, Inc.
Abstract: For study of organizing and training models that may be effective in public housing and for continuing consultation with public housing organizing initiatives
Amount: $14,000 Year Authorized: 1989

Foundation Name: Wieboldt Foundation
Abstract: For scholarships to national academy that trains community organizers
Amount: $5,000 Year Authorized: 1988

http://www.undueinfluence.com/midwest_academy.htm

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NOT RACIST.

NOT VIOLENT.

JUST SILENT NO MORE.


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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. […] Training for RADICALS: The Industrial Areas Foundation and the Midwest Academy […]

  2. […] [New York Mayor Koch:] “I had the feeling I was in some Nuremberg stadium. There was a military band. There were more than 1,000 people, chanting. They were thumping standards on the floor. It was like mass hysteria and very militant.” (p. 86) [Do we not see here a model for Obama’s Greek-columned, fireworks-enhanced stadium acceptance speech?] …Read more: Romantic Poet […]

  3. […] created his 4th Rule he called his “Kill Rule” specifically for Christians.  Training For Radicals […]


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