Friday, October 16, 2009

To Hell with Saul Alinsky

George Patton had his flaws, but also some great quotes, which I'm reminded of now and then, and taken metaphorically and in the right context, can provide inspiration, motivation, guidance for anyone fighting to preserve or achieve something in their life, politically, personally, intellectually, professionally.

If anyone has great quotes of their own in this vein from other sources, I'd enjoy hearing them.


There are three reasons why we are fighting this war. The first is because we are determined to preserve our traditional liberties. Some crazy German bastards decided they were supermen and that it was their holy mission to rule the world. They've been pushing people around all over the world, looting, killing, and abusing millions of innocent men, women, and children. They were getting set to do the same thing to us. We had to fight to prevent being subjugated. [substitute "New Left" for "Germans" ...but they aren't so different, are they?]

Tin soldier politicians in Washington have allowed us to kick the Hell out of one bastard [let's say, Bush] and at the same time forced us to help establish a second one as evil or more evil than the first [let's say, Obama, working in league with various foreign enemies of the United States] ...This time we'll need almighty God's constant help if we're to live in the same world with Stalin and his murdering cutthroats. [at least, Ayn Rand's help, because the only way this war to save our freedom will be won is intellectually]

After being told by Omar Bradley that the Russians were going to be allowed to occupy Prague in order to avoid "complications", Patton said, "For God's sake Brad, it seems to me that a great nation like America should let others worry about the complications."

Better to fight for something than live for nothing.

Moral courage is the most valuable and usually the most absent characteristic in men.

No sane man is unafraid in battle, but discipline produces in him a form of vicarious courage.

Brave men will breed brave men.

Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory.

In war, it takes more than the desire to fight to win. You've got to have more than guts to lick the enemy. You must also have brains.

Untutored courage is useless in the face of educated bullets.

There is a time to take counsel of your fears, and there is a time to never listen to any fear.

If we take the generally accepted definition of bravery as a quality which knows no fear, I have never seen a brave man. All men are frightened. The more intelligent they are, the more they are frightened.

Courage is fear holding on a minute longer.

The time to take counsel of your fears is before you make an important battle decision. That's the time to listen to every fear you can imagine! When you have collected all the facts and fears and made your decision, turn off all your fears and go ahead!

It’s the unconquerable soul of man, not the nature of the weapon he uses, that insures victory.

Accept the challenges so that you can feel the exhilaration of victory.

You’re never beaten until you admit it.

If man does his best what else is there?

War is simple, direct, and ruthless.

A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week.

An incessant change of means to attain unalterable ends is always going on; we must take care not to let these sundry means acquire undue eminence in the perspective of our minds; for, since the beginning, there has been an unending cycle of them, and for each its advocates have claimed adoption as the sole solution of successful war.

You shouldn't underestimate an enemy, but it is just as fatal to overestimate him.

Wars may be fought with weapons, but they are won by men. It is the spirit of men who follow and of the man who leads that gains the victory.

Many, who should know better, think that wars can be decided by soulless machines, rather than by the blood and anguish of brave men. [computers aren't always the solution...]

You want to know why this outfit got the hell kicked out of it? A blind man could spot it. They don't act like soldiers; they don't look like soldiers; why should they be expected to fight like soldiers?

Prepare for the unknown by studying how others in the past have coped with the unforeseeable and the unpredictable.
In case of doubt, attack.

Good tactics can save even the worst strategy. Bad tactics will destroy even the best strategy.

In war the only sure defense is offense, and the efficiency of the offense depends on the warlike souls of those conducting it.

Now there's another thing I want you to remember. I don't want to get any messages saying that we are holding our position. We're not holding anything. We'll let the Hun do that. We are advancing constantly, and we're not interested in holding onto anything except the enemy. We're going to hold onto him by the nose, and we're going to kick him in the ass. We're going to kick the hell out of him all the time, and we're going to go through him like crap through a goose.

Nobody ever defended anything successfully, there is only attack and attack and attack some more.

Fixed fortifications are monuments to man's stupidity. [let's say, Conservatism...]

Many soldiers are led to faulty ideas of war by knowing too much about too little.

To conquer, we must destroy our enemies. We must not only die gallantly; we must kill devastatingly. The faster and more effectively you kill, the longer you will live to enjoy the priceless fame of conquerors.

There are no practice games in life. It's eat or be eaten, kill or be killed. I want my bunch to be in there first, to be the 'fustest with the mostest'. They won't do it if I ask them nicely.

I always believe in being prepared, even when I'm dressed in white tie and tails. [mentally prepared ... like Francisco d'Anconia]

Attack rapidly, ruthlessly, viciously, without rest, however tired and hungry you may be, the enemy will be more tired, more hungry. Keep punching.

Never let the enemy pick the battle site. [My addendum: Given the choice, never fight a battle you are sure to lose -- if you want to win the war.]

We have got by due to persistance and on the ability to make plans fit circumstances. The other armies try to make circumstances fit plans.

I do not fear failure. I only fear the "slowing up" of the engine inside of me which is pounding, saying, "Keep going, someone must be on top, why not you?"

Surrender is as ignoble as it is foolish. Above all else, remember that we as attackers have the initiative, we know exactly what we are going to do, while the enemy is ignorant of our intentions and can only parry our blows. We must retain this tremendous advantage by always attacking rapidly, ruthlessly, viciously, and without rest.

May God have mercy upon my enemies, because I won't.

Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.

If you tell people where to go, but not how to get there, you'll be amazed at the results.

Be willing to make decisions. That's the most important quality in a good leader.

Do your damnedest in an ostentatious manner all the time.

The leader must be an actor.

All very successful commanders are prima donnas and must be so treated.

Take calculated risks. That is quite different from being rash.

Always do everything you ask of those you command.

We herd sheep, we drive cattle, we lead people. Lead me, follow me, or get out of my way.

No good decision was ever made in a swivel chair.

Say what you mean and mean what you say.

A piece of spaghetti or a military unit can only be led from the front end.

There is only one sort of discipline, perfect discipline. [let's say... a disciplined mind.]

A man must know his destiny. If he does not recognize it, then he is lost. By this I mean, once, twice, or at the very most, three times, fate will reach out and tap a man on the shoulder. if he has the imagination, he will turn around and fate will point out to him what fork in the road he should take, if he has the guts, he will take it. [not fate perhaps, but the knowledge of what he must do have integrity towards his values...]

If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking. [Fill in the blanks on that one... ]

Do more than is required of you.

An active mind cannot exist in an inactive body.

By perseverance, study, and eternal desire, any man can become great.

If a man does his best, what else is there?

A pint of sweat saves a gallon of blood.

Prepare for the unknown by studying how others in the past have coped with the unforeseeable and the unpredictable.

Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.

I don't measure a man's success by how high he climbs but how high he bounces when he hits bottom.

You need to overcome the tug of people against you as you reach for high goals.

Americans love to fight. All real Americans love the sting of battle.

War is the supreme test of man in which he rises to heights never approached in any other activity.

Americans play to win at all times. I wouldn't give a hoot and hell for a man who lost and laughed.

My men don't surrender. I don't want to hear of any soldier under my command being captured unless he is hit. Even if you are hit, you can still fight. That's not just bullshit, either. The kind of man I want under me is like the lieutenant in Libya, who, with a Lugar against his chest, jerked off his helmet, swept the gun aside with one hand and busted hell out of the Boche with the helmet. Then he jumped on the gun and went out and killed another German: All this with a bullet through his lung. That's a man for you.

No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country.

It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived.

There's one thing that you men will be able to say when you get back home, and you may thank God for it. Thirty years from now when you're sitting around your fireside with your grandson on your knee, and he asks you, "What did you do in the great World War II?" -- you won't have to say, "Well, I shoveled shit in Louisiana."

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