Conservatives need to organize like unions: divide and conquer

Rebecca M. Smith continues her explanation of how conservatives need to organize like unions. This second article in the series discusses dividing and conquering, and combating it when it’s done to you.

Organizers for unions and the community utilize what I call the wedge tactic.  They drive a wedge between their target audience and everyone else.  The classic “us versus them” scenario.

We have seen it come out under the current regime as rich against poor.  For unions this is a critical strategy in organizing.  Workers versus management.  They publicize the CEO’s salary and then tell the worker that the CEO did nothing to deserve it.  They inform the worker that the profits should be spread out amongst everyone because without the worker there would be no profits.  If the workers vote for a union, the union would force the company into sharing the wealth.  Does that sound familiar?

Divide-and-conquerDivide and conquer is an old tactic, yet for some reason the conservatives remain paralyzed in the face of it.  Perhaps because they are too busy dividing themselves.

First, realize that every argument put forth by an organizer is based on emotion — not fact.  You can get people to do almost anything if their decision is based on emotion. In politics, it is even easier, especially since the GOP is so concerned with being polite.  So for all you future candidates out there let me lay out in black and white — you are either here to win, or just go home.   The world is full of nice conservatives and Republicans who lost.  Ask John McCain or Mitt Romney (who arguably aren’t conservative).  If you are uncomfortable with going after your rival then you have no place in politics.

There are two things we as conservatives must learn.  The first is to divide and conquer our opponents, and the second is to combat the divide and conquer tactics being used on conservatives.

In order to divide and conquer you must know who your adversary really is.  When an organizer targets a group their boots on the ground campaign is a reflection of the demographic they wish to organize.  If I am organizing in Alabama, I have organizers who love catfish, can recite the Crimson Tide stats, and have a dog named Bear Bryant.  Those same organizers might find themselves a month later organizing in Boston.  They will be wearing navy pea coats if the weather dictates it, assume a Southie accent, and hand out tickets to the greatest baseball team ever to step out on the field – the Red Sox.  They are chameleons.

To divide and conquer is easy.  You just have to be diligent in gathering facts and presenting them properly.  For example, most union members, especially in the trade unions, own guns and are members of the NRA.  The unions they belong to never take a strong stand on gun control.  Or maybe they do.  Maybe they use the dues collected from their gun owning members and then give it to community groups lobbying for assault weapons bans.

My mind is filled with ideas on how I would apply this message over a period of time.  The possibilities are endless.  Obama never stops campaigning.   He was a community organizer and they know that you never stop the messaging.

Rebecca Smith is a contributor to The Brenner Brief and an expert on union issues. Twitter: @unionhypocrisy

Rebecca Smith is a contributor to The Brenner Brief and an expert on union issues. Twitter: @unionhypocrisy

Combatting the “us versus them,” or currently, the rich versus the poor is someone whom I want to hug — Marco Rubio.  His speech Tuesday got me so excited I followed him on twitter.  First, talk to people in the language they understand.  We may all speak English, but how we interpret what is said depends on … wait for it … demographics!

For example, let’s look at the big one — social security.  If you would like to keep insulting every working person, keep calling it an entitlement.  You force me to pay into this out of every paycheck and now you insult me by calling it an entitlement?  Telling people it’s a gift when they are paying for it doesn’t work.  Yes we know it’s failing, but we feel like you are blaming us for living too long when honestly it’s your (Congress’) fault it’s failing.  See how that works?

Go back and listen to how Rubio spoke and what he said.  This is what we need to build on.

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  1. I remember once I was watching the news and some guy was on there talking about ss being a gift, not a right, and you know what happened? I got really indignant. what!? that made me think of a robber taking your money and then saying later on if you keep giving him a certain percentage every year he will give some of it back when your unable to work, and then telling the person it is a gift when they do it. and if you say I will take care of that myself, the robber says no, you will give it to me or I will blow your brains out. this is just so evil/wicked I dont know what to say.

  2. richardbaris says:

    Reblogged this on Richard D. Baris and commented:
    Part II


  1. […] Conservatives need to organize like unions: divide and conquer ( […]

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