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"[Community Organizer] = [Merchant of Chaos]"

I have the privilege of belonging to an email group that consists of some seriously thoughtful, vigorously informed and extraordinarily perceptive bloggers.  No kidding.  How in heck I was able to finagle my way into their company is a story someone one day ought to take up as a rags to riches kind of narrative.  At times I wonder when it is they'll find me out and kick me off distribution... but I digress.

Today in email I received something provocative from Garry.  Garry puts up posts with his wife Terresa over at NoisyRoom.net and what follows is something I think needs to be passed around.  Alot.


Last few days I keep hearing the term "community organizer."  Yes, it's been in the lexicon for the last couple of years, but I started "hearing" it only recently.

People now use the word as though they understand it.  I believe it might be entertaining to quiz some high profile figure on his/her understanding of the term and watch the verbal dance that follows.

The term has always troubled me, as there is really no frame of reference for defining it, beyond the deliberately vague and fluffy explanations offered by the people who invented it.

There's always been a sense of Humpty Dumpty ("when I use a word, it means just what I choose it to mean -- neither more nor less") about the term.

Well, I may be slow, but eventually my addled mind catches up.

The term is a substitute.  It stands in the stead of other, less publicly acceptable words, agitator, instigator, fomenter, and provocateur.

An acceptable translation of the term would be "agent provocateur."

There's another term that can be used, but I'll address that below.

There's a passage from Orwell's 1984 that opens a door to understanding the scope of the term's application:

"Nearly all children nowadays were horrible. What was worst of all was that by means of such organizations as the Spies they were systematically turned into ungovernable little savages, and yet this produced in them no tendency whatever to rebel against the discipline of the Party. On the contrary, they adored the Party and everything connected with it... All their ferocity was turned outwards, against the enemies of the State, against foreigners, traitors, saboteurs, thought-criminals. It was almost normal for people over thirty to be frightened of their own children."
- George Orwell, 1984, Book 1, Chapter 2

". . . turned into ungovernable little savages . . ."


The root of social chaos.

The application is "directed chaos."

What is chaos?  It is random motion.  It is unpredictability.  If you're directing it, it's not truly random from where you stand.  It's only random to its target audience.

Oh, and the other term?  Coined by a man whose insight I am only now beginning to appreciate, his term was merchant of chaos."

So, if you want a better understanding of the relationship between our friends within and surrounding the administration and current world and national events, it helps if you recognize that [community
organizer] = [merchant of chaos].

And I apologize for my failure to spot this years ago.

~~ Garry

The picture painted by some describing this President as a bumbling, incompetent fool is, I'm increasingly coming to believe, inaccurate and dare I say naive.  Too often, I've fallen into this trap meself. 

Garry gives us cause for pause when we begin to blame ineptitude for what this country is experiencing.


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Comments (35)

My response to my teenaged ... (Below threshold)
Jay Guevara:

My response to my teenaged son's question, back when the term first intruded on our collective consciousness: "community organizer" = "communist agitator."

The picture painted by s... (Below threshold)

The picture painted by some describing this President as a bumbling, incompetent fool is, I'm increasingly coming to believe, inaccurate and dare I say naive.

"You have attributed conditions to villainy that simply result from stupidity." (Robert Heinlein)

You suspect Barry Lackwit's actions are intentional simply because you want to believe surely no human being capable of breathing on his own could be this stupid! Sadly, 'tis not the case. It really is possible for a living human to be this stupid. The Darwin Awards are full of 'em. So are police blotters.

If Barry Lackwit was actually following some kind of plan, he would be going about it in a more competent and effective way. For example, he would have forced through an amnesty bill last year, when he still had total control of Congress.

Actually Rick, Barry is ine... (Below threshold)

Actually Rick, Barry is inept. He's an empty suit with no record of accomplishment other than in spending other's money - and accomplishing NOTHING.

He throws bull shit against the wall, hoping something will stick that he can grab credit for, even for only a few minutes - because it will slide off the wall in short order.

Barry is already gearing up for 2012. 1st it's the gays, with his change of mind on DOMA. Next it will be 'comprehensive immigration reform' so he can grab the Hispanic vote.

I agree that Barry see's hi... (Below threshold)

I agree that Barry see's himself as a merchant of chaos ... the problem is he doesn't have the skills to control a monster the size of the Federal Government ...
He has unloosed his minions and now has little control of the swirling mess that is now the Obama Administration ...

I would point out that if O... (Below threshold)

I would point out that if Obama kills DOMA and DADT the Gay community has little reason to vote for him in 2012 ... they may not vote GOP, they just won't vote ...

Barry is inept for sure. Ye... (Below threshold)

Barry is inept for sure. Yet, He is very adept at reaching the dead electorate thru ACORN and has no problem usurping the will of the People.

So yeah, He's about as smart as the clowns who vote for Him.

I can't wait till the 2012 ... (Below threshold)

I can't wait till the 2012 election and the great purge of every leftist commie-tard in government service. A massive layoff, bringing Barry's Hope & Change to government leeches everywhere. I'm talking scorched earth against these criminals.

What we are seeing in Wisco... (Below threshold)
jim m:

What we are seeing in Wisconsin is a test run for 2012. Barry's campaign apparatus, OFA, is coordinating the protests there and elsewhere and the media is taking its direction from the unions and OFA.

What is heartening is that the public sentiment is not swinging toward the dems and the unions but in the opposite direction. If this is a test run we should be using it to prepare to counter their assault and judging from the language being used by the dems, the next step will be physical assault of the opposition.

Community organizer indeed.... (Below threshold)
I have a vision of G... (Below threshold)

I have a vision of Garry with a bag a cheetos, a mister pib, a job.... errr well cheetos and a mr pib.

Obama has still never said ... (Below threshold)

Obama has still never said or done anything to persuade me to believe he's anything more than a prop, a figurehead, a spokesmodel installed by The Party to push and rubberstamp The Party's agenda.

<a href="http://www.america... (Below threshold)
Jim Addison:

Chantrill at the American Thinker had a similar thought, but suggested "radical suits" - comparing the "community organizer" to the corporate suits we've all come to scorn.

Naturally, their clientele are suckers.

I suspect Obama's sudden move on DOMA is geared more to the youth vote, which may be his last hope for reelection.

He won in 2008 with record turnouts of blacks and young voters, winning independents, and conservatives who stayed home out of animosity against McCain. He's already blown independents and energized conservatives. While blacks will still turn out for him in droves, although they have suffered from his policies, he won't be able to exceed the numbers. So any chance depends upon another youth surge.

Having already sabotaged their futures, his best chance is to appeal to their liberal social attitudes, portraying Republicans as their parents.

“Any sufficiently advanced ... (Below threshold)
Evil Otto:

“Any sufficiently advanced incompetence is indistinguishable from malice.”
-Grey's Law

I have a question: What dif... (Below threshold)
Upset Old Guy:

I have a question: What difference does it make if BHO is an evil genius tearing our country apart by intentionally fomenting factionalism - or - BHO is a drooling idiot tearing our country apart by unintentionally fomenting factionalism?

It seems to me that either way core principals and structures are being weakened and destroyed, and the broad sense of community and pride are being splintered. As an intellectual endeavor it may be stimulating to try to search for the truth here, but it will have little bearing on the course of action required to clean up his mess.

Saul Alinsky in his book "R... (Below threshold)

Saul Alinsky in his book "Rules for Radicals" states that the term community organizer is code for communist organizer.

Yeah, count me in the "inco... (Below threshold)
Andrew X:

Yeah, count me in the "incompetent doof" faction rather than the "evil genuis" faction.

A huge settling issue for me was the Ground Zero Mosque. Any genuinely ruthless revolutionary would written off the GZM'ers in a heartbeat for the higher purpose of politcal effectiveness in the great destruction. Ya think LENIN would have wrung his hands and back and forthed and taken the Muslim side.... AGAIN!?!?! No he would have cut the throats of people he even liked, and who supported him, knowing that a higher revolutionary purpose was being served.

No, follow Occam's Razor - Obama has no executive experience, all he has is his academic bubble world and he really really does think that a majority of US citizens think like Chicago activists and academic faculties. It's all he knows. Make that assuption, and all of a sudden all the pieces fit, including his deer-in-the-headlights demeanor in response to every single thing that ever happens (like Libya) that does not fit into the activist/academic framework.

Rick, that is a very intere... (Below threshold)

Rick, that is a very interesting take. I gave it some thought and I would have to agree with the commenters. Obama is inexperienced by a huge amount. He is not confrontational although he puts on a tough guy act. He only focuses on what he can look good doing and nothing more. I also detect some of his department heads are looking for some direction but are not getting it. That is why Clinton, although I am not a fan, she certainly could have issues firmer statements concerning the Middle East but is restrained do to lack of direction of this administration. So, he is a baffoon who speaks well. In Texas we would say: "He's all hat and no cattle." ww

In Texas we would say: "... (Below threshold)

In Texas we would say: "He's all hat and no cattle."

And the hat's paper instead of a good solid Stetson.

All ukulele and no canoe.</... (Below threshold)

All ukulele and no canoe.

You guys hate community org... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

You guys hate community organizers so much, yet the Tea Party movement could not have happened without them. It took community organizers to arrange all tea party gathering and to make arrangements for busses to bring people to protests.

Tina, if you can find just ... (Below threshold)
Andrew X:

Tina, if you can find just one of those people you refer to who calls themselves a "community organizer", or even anything similar meaning same, I'll eat my hat.

Those people call themselves something else: Fireman... Church Deacon... student... Accountant.... Mother.... Housewife... etc etc. THAT is what those people are, not "community organizers". They are people who began organizing to save their country from a burgeoning desperate situation.

The reason that CO term grates on so many of us is that Obama and ilk proudly wear it, and it not a term that would ever be used by anyone who is not essentially a leftist agitator, who will be doing all the things under that rubric need not be listed here: we all know what that is about.

"Community organizer", left or right, is not a profession, it's more like a hobby or a passion. It's a what you do, not what you are. But it is what Obama is, because there is nothing else. And that is what is so telling, and why we wll not forget his own proud self-identification as such.

Wrong, Tina. The Tea Party ... (Below threshold)
Upset Old Guy:

Wrong, Tina. The Tea Party is a grassroots movement, not astroturf. There are no community organizers (professional agitators) working in for foreground while being paid by the puppet masters in the background.

Upset Old Guy, you might wa... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

Upset Old Guy, you might want to google Americans For Prosperity & Freedom Works and there relationship to the Tea Party movement.

I understand that a presi... (Below threshold)
gaius piconius:

I understand that a president's legacy to the nation will be keenly haggled and fawned over for decades. But, BH Obama's legacy will always lead off, however, with two these most mournful questions; 'How the heck did this destruction bent man ever get selected by his party, then elected by the American public?' What character sickness had decended on the nation?
One positive judgement though, and perhaps the only one.....'We all wish we had the name of his tailor!'

After reading above, Thug... (Below threshold)
gaius piconius:

After reading above, Thugs, Goons and Brown Shirts, then the UN indictment following it, I reread my own #24 here and add,further...DITTO and DITTO. The prez is on a roll!

Tina, if you can find ju... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

Tina, if you can find just one of those people you refer to who calls themselves a "community organizer", or even anything similar meaning same, I'll eat my hat.

Andrew X, you might want to put some ketchup on your hat.

Join today and get started as a FreedomWorks community organizer!

You omitted rabble rouser, ... (Below threshold)

You omitted rabble rouser, think of the behavior exhibited at the typical liberal protest and the property damage,the violence, and the truckloads of garbage they leave behind then contrast that with tea partiers.

Andrew X, I found another e... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

Andrew X, I found another example. Brendan Steinhauser is the Director of Federal and State Campaigns for FreedomWorks. In an online interview he signed off as Community Organizer for Freedom. Scroll to the bottom of this link.

An agent provocateur is act... (Below threshold)

An agent provocateur is actually usaully someone in govt. that poses as part of a group to spy on their activitys and to provoke violence at demonstrations protesting govt. actions. Most of the group have no desire for violence or to be a part of it.By throwing missles at police from a crowd or firng a gun in the air the police are compelled to respond with force and a riot is incited with everyone present trapped and running to escape the chaos.

To paraphrase what someone ... (Below threshold)

To paraphrase what someone once said,

A community organizer is kind of like a mayor, but without the responsibilities.

While one should never ascr... (Below threshold)
Jim Addison:

While one should never ascribe to malice that which can be explained by stupidity, it is also folly to believe one cannot be simultaneously stupid AND evil.


Tina S & Andrew X @ #s 20 & 21 ~ Do not mistake a "community organizer" for a "Community Organizer."

To the former, it's what he does. To the latter, it's who he IS.

"You guys hate community or... (Below threshold)
Upset Old Guy:

"You guys hate community organizers so much, yet the Tea Party movement could not have happened without them. It took community organizers to arrange all tea party gathering and to make arrangements for busses to bring people to protests." Tina S

Tina, that's wrong and I'll bet that at least on some level you know it as well. The Tea Party happened as a widespread response to a comment by Rick Santelli. What he said just seemed like a really good idea to a lot of people nationwide.

When I said it was grassroots and not astroturf I was primarily reacting to your comment about people making arrangement to busses. I believe you will be hard pressed to find many (if any) examples of third p[arties, like Oprah Winfrey and the SEIU, renting and picking up the cost of busses to take people to Tea Party rallies.

Has social networking been employed to coordinate rallies? Certainly. Have leaders developed over the course of time within different Tea Party groups? Of course. But in no way does that equate to a union boss instructing his paid staff to get as many people as they can on the steps to every State House "next Tuesday morning."

FInally, has the Tea Party movement been embraced by other fellow travelers (such as FreedomWorks and Americans for Prosperity) over the course of time? Why would you expect anything less?

Sorry if anyone considers me late in a response to Tina, but as a retiree I probably keep different hours than most of you.

You guys hate community ... (Below threshold)

You guys hate community organizers so much, yet the Tea Party movement could not have happened without them.

As others have pointed out, Tina - the vast majority of the 'community organizers' in the Tea Party movement don't see it as their day jobs or their source of income. They're 'amateurs' instead of 'professionals'. It's what they DO, not what they ARE.

And Obama even quit at that, apparently it was too difficult. It makes me wonder if he'd quit being President, if he thought he could.

Upset Old Guy & JLawson,</p... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

Upset Old Guy & JLawson,

My point that I was making is that the movement never would have started without professional community organizers. It was not as if Americans For Prosperity & Freedom Works jumped on the bandwagon. They created the bandwagon and were the ones who got it rolling. I'll provide more details on how they did it later tonight.

And Obama even quit at t... (Below threshold)
Tina S:

And Obama even quit at that, apparently it was too difficult. It makes me wonder if he'd quit being President, if he thought he could.

Obama left his job as a church-based community organizer to attend Harvard Law School. At Harvard he was editor of the Harvard Law Review his first year, president of the Harvard Law Review his second year and graduated magna cum laude. Do you really think being a community organizer is more dificult than attending and accomplishing what Obama did at Harvard Law School?






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