….this is how they get you (autoplay video link).
That video has been making the rounds on our side of the Internet for a while now. It’s the national meeting of the Democratic Socialists of America, and it’s as sad and hilarious as you’d expect — goofballs calling each other “comrade,” insisting on “points of personal privilege,” and demanding the use of jazz hands in lieu of clapping (no, really) because some people are triggered by the noise. If these…organisms… are “The Revolution,” then what could we possibly have to worry about?
Lots. Not to toot my own horn too much, but I’ve written on this before. Comrade Stalin is an excellent example. We all know what he did as dictator, but unless you’re a fairly serious student of the Russian Revolution, you probably don’t know that before becoming the vozhd, his primary duty was… paperwork. Tons and tons and tons of paperwork.
His brief stint as a Red Army commissar was a disaster — he was, as you might expect, aces at having dissidents rounded up and shot, but his few actual military(-ish) decisions were widely blamed for the loss of important cities to the Poles. Here too, his decisions were all paperwork — in this case, refusing to countersign orders because they didn’t follow proper procedure. After the Civil War he was the “People’s Commissar for Nationalities,” hardly a glamour post (by contrast, Lenin’s heir presumptive, Leon Trotsky, was in charge of the Red Army… which he created from scratch). Even Stalin’s participation in the Tiflis Bank Robbery of 1907, the one “direct action” he was involved with, is disputed — his only known role was as an organizer.
In short, the guy was a pen pusher, and very little more than a pen pusher, up to the moment he seized power.
His plan was simple and obvious: Build up an organization by inserting his loyalists into every possible post, while maneuvering to get anyone who opposed him transferred (or shot). The execution was even simpler: Meetings, meetings, and more meetings. Stalin didn’t seize power; he ground all his rivals down with sheer tedium. “Stalin” means “man of steel,” but he won by having a cast-iron bladder and a leather ass.
Probably everyone who has worked for a large organization has been in a meeting with one of those people. She (and these days it’s almost always a woman) has some pet issue that she just will not let go, and so the meeting drags on interminably. Since her pet issue is invariably petty chick shit — posting an official sign on the break room fridge about labeling your lunch bag or whatever — everyone shrugs and agrees to it, just to get the damn meeting over with.
With me? Now imagine that scaled up just one notch. Google up your town’s library board. Municipal public libraries have Boards of Trustees; those Boards have regularly-scheduled meetings that are open to the public. Almost nobody in the community knows about this, because nobody with a normal life cares. After all, who has the time and energy to think about the minutiae of library policy?
And then one day you walk in, and the shelves are nothing but Hillary and Chelsea’s children’s book and A People’s History of the United States. Nothing has been banned. Everything was done legally, indeed democratically. It’s just that, when it came time to hire a new assistant librarian, the three people who showed up to the board meeting nominated the blue-haired, nose-ringed, trans-woman with the face tattoos, and nobody objected, because nobody who would’ve objected was there.
Scale that up another notch, and you’ve got the local school system. I saw this one firsthand. I grew up in the New New South created by the regional tech boom that started in the late 1970s. My sleepy little burg on the edge of a slightly bigger sleepy little burg in Yoknapatawpha County transformed, in the space of a decade or two, into a gleaming prefab yuppie paradise on the edge of a bustling metropolis. Since this was due to a tech boom, though, half the yuppies had names like “Prajneet” and “Kung Pao.” Those fine folks certainly weren’t going to have their precious kids getting their hands dirty in gym class… but alas, gym was still a requirement in our school district. So Prajneet and Kung Pao staged a sit-in, and by the time they were done, not only were their kids getting gym class credit for playing in the school orchestra, they were getting academic credit for it, too — at “honors” level, natch. Who the hell was going to schlep on down to the school board meetings, night after night after night, to object? The football coach?
Scale that up another notch, and you’ve got the American university system. Hiring one self-proclaimed radical is no big deal, right? After all, the mission of the university is to encourage the free discussion of ideas etc. But while the other faculty members had lives and families and hobbies and whatnot, all the radical had was his radicalism. So when the rest of the faculty didn’t feel like doing the twelve reams of paperwork that some new administration policy required, the radical volunteered…. and hired a few of his buddies to help.
Scale that up another notch….
That’s how they win, comrades. Anyone who has the patience to sit through a meeting where “points of personal privilege” are invoked, and jazz hands made mandatory, has more free time than you and I will ever have. They have more patience than all the Fourteen Readers combined. And they use it, because they’ve got nothing else in their lives. That’s how you win in a democracy — infiltrate your people into all the low-level positions, and then, when it comes up for a vote, have all your people vote to abolish democracy.