Saul Alinsky on Dogma

Tom Peters regards Saul Alinsky’s “Rules for Radicals” as the best project management manual he’s come across.  Given that the real hard work on projects is always the people stuff it’s probably of more benefit to a project management practitioner in the long run than the Prince 2 manual or the PMBOK.  Alinsky was a leading community organiser of the poor and powerless in US cities in the 40s and 50s and is cited as having a major influence on both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.   It’s a very good read for people involved in getting things done at any level in life.  I took a lot from it especially this quote:

“I detest and fear dogma.  I know that all revolutions must have ideologies to spur them on.  That in the heat of conflict these ideologies tend to be smelted into rigid dogmas claiming exclusive possession of the truth, and the keys to paradise, is tragic.  Dogma is the enemy of human freedom.  Dogma must be watched for and apprehended at every turn and twist of the revolutionary movement.  The human spirit glows from that small inner light of doubt whether we are right, while those who believe with complete certainty that they possess the right are dark inside and darken the world outside with cruelty, pain, and injustice.”


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