Saul Alinsky is dead. So is Occupy Wall Street. Or if it’s not dead it is in the throes of dying. Alinsky taught revolution as a three act play. Act I is to gain respect. That does not happen by defecating on police cars and shutting down subway stations at rush hour.
In the first couple of weeks of OWS, the movement was seen as counterpoint to the Tea Party. It may have even been intended as such by its founders, whomever they may be. There were people with honest gripes about the lack of jobs, crony capitalism, ill conceived bailouts, and stimulus that didn’t stimulate. However, given the obsession of the OWS leadership with democracy and endless “General Assemblies” the movement never found a unified direction. You can’t steer a ship with a hundred rudders in the hands of a hundred helmsmen each with a different idea of which direction forward is.
Gradually the cross section of ordinary Americans who really did want jobs and better government withdrew. They left the tent cities to the shower-less and the anarchists whose idea of social justice is – why make it if you can just take it? This is exactly the type of behavior Saul Alinsky sought to correct. Without effective leadership they are proving to be no more than a band of useless idiots.