Initial Successes and Recruiting Cadres
THINGS ARE beginning to move faster now, as our larger National Office staff gears up for several new projects. The importance of this increased pace lies not just in the new projects themselves, but in its portents for the future growth of the Alliance.
In years past we often had to run as fast as we could just to stay in the same place. That was because people joined expecting dramatic results immediately, quickly became impatient with the slow pace of progress, and quit. We were lucky if we recruited enough new members each month to replace the ones who dropped out.
Then we changed our strategy. We stopped trying to maintain the interest of a relatively large number of lukewarm members and subscribers and concentrated instead on reaching a smaller number of persons with more character and winning a strong commitment from them. As these new cadres joined us, one by one, our capabilities began to grow. So far those capabilities have continued to be used to increase the quality of our printed propaganda, in order to reach more of the exceptional few.
And, although NV is far superior to any other racially oriented, radical periodical now being published, we still have a way to go. We must continue developing our capability for producing articles dealing with history, politics, race science, philosophy, and other topics, which are substantive, original, and innovative — the results of careful research, intelligent planning, and skillful writing.
We have already proved that this is essential for winning the top-quality cadres we urgently need. The arm-waving and shouting which the lukewarm like to see and hear just don’t convince the men and women of character and intelligence we want. Only quality attracts quality. And only the very highest quality attainable will tempt the people who have what it takes to win the struggle for the future of our race in which we are engaged.
So we will continue our emphasis on quality. But we are now approaching what might be thought of as a critical mass — a level of development at which the Alliance no longer has to exert all its efforts to keep form sliding backward, but instead begins to move forward with increasing momentum. The chain reaction for which we have worked so long is starting.
This is the consequence of having built our National Office staff to the point at which we can not only continue on our present course with NV but can also begin doing the things required to maintain the interest of persons with shorter attention spans — the thing required to hold the lukewarm, who in their greater numbers, will always be an essential complement to the cadres and the general membership.
That is, our National Office staff will soon begin producing, in addition to NV, printed material designed for readers with more limited understanding and less character that our present NV readers have: material for conservatives, for disgruntled taxpayers, for people who are looking for immediate relief from “the niggers” and aren’t really interested in a revolution or in long-range programs — in other words, material for “the masses.” People from whom we won’t be expecting to recruit cadres, but whose support we need as subscribers and contributors even at this stage, if the organizational structure is to have the means to continue to grow.
We do not intend to hold out to these people the false, “quickie” solutions for which they are looking, like the right-wing organizations and the conservative con-men are doing, but we can begin to offer them some auxiliary materials, more suited to their limited attention-span than NV. For example, as a first step in this direction, NV’s book and film editor is preparing the first issue of a humor publication which, instead of giving the reader the serious analysis and revolutionary solutions of NV, will lampoon the government, the Blacks, the Jews, and the liberals, making the reader laugh rather than demanding that he think. But it should also provide an opening for NV in some circles where none existed before, and it will give every Alliance member a broader arsenal of material to choose from in attempting to reach new people and establish the sympathetic rapport we must have if the NV circulation and the Alliance are to continue to grow.
As a second step in that direction, we will prepare, early next year, a special introductory issue of NV, which will be designed especially for making initial contact with new people who may have difficulty in understanding the regular issue of NV. The articles will be simpler, shorter and more graphic than those normally in NV, and they will be tied to concrete problems which are of immediate and urgent concern to millions of non-radical Americans. At the same time, the introductory issue will avoid dealing with transitory news that will quickly become “dated,” so that we can print large numbers of the issue and offer them to members at low prices over a period of several months.
As with the humor publication, the ultimate aim of the introductory issue of NV will be to increase the number of subscribers to the regular issues of NV and to thereby increase the resources available to the Alliance, because we do not have the means yet to undertake successful mass organizing. Our top-priority task remains the recruiting of cadres and the building of our organizational capability.
Our larger staff of cadres also allows us to work more closely with the general membership of the Alliance than has been true in the past, when members have been left largely to their own devices. We still need at least one more cadre here in Washington whose specialty is internal organization rather than propaganda before we can do everything we should in maximizing the recruiting effectiveness of our members in the field, but we are already able to take a few steps in that direction: for example, we can now answer much more correspondence from individual members than in the past, when the shortage of office cadres forced us to leave a majority of our correspondence unanswered.
Early next year a Member’s Handbook will be printed and mailed to all members. It will tell them what is expected of them and will offer guidance and instructions for carrying out their membership responsibilities: suggested activities, do’s and don’ts, hints for more successful distributions of propaganda materials, guidelines for local recruiting and meetings, etc. Such a handbook has been needed for years, of course, but during the period when the National Office had its hands more than full just trying to publish a newspaper eight or nine times a year, it was a low-priority project.
As a first step toward an increased coordination of member activities, a new form has been prepared which should make it more convenient for members to give brief reports of their activities to the National Office each month. This will allow the National Office to be more closely aware of what is going on around the country and to report new or especially successful activities to other members in the BULLETIN. The Member’s Monthly Activity Report will be mailed with each issue of the BULLETIN.
Just so there can be no misunderstanding as to what the Alliance is doing at this time, here is a brief recapitulation of what has been said before in the BULLETIN — and which will be said again, at much greater length, in NV:
• We are not trying, at this time, to build a mass movement, to win elections, to “wake up America,” to educate the public, or to change its mind on any issue.
• We are doing just two things, and they are sowing seeds among the public and building a cadre-based organization.
• Sowing seeds is not quite the same thing as educating the public, because most of the seeds we sow now will not bear fruit until conditions in America have changed substantially; only a few of our seeds will yield immediate results. We cannot change public opinion now, because we cannot compete effectively with the schools, churches, government, and mass media. We can merely make people aware of certain facts and prepare them to change their opinions at a later time.
• By far the more important of our two tasks is organization-building. This involves more than merely signing up lots of members; it involves building a function-oriented organization structure with a planned and intergraded set of capabilities.
• Each member who is a part of this organizational structure has specific tasks to perform.
• The largest number of members merely work at their customary occupations and render as much financial support as thy can to the Alliance; they provide the absolutely essential financial basis for the rest of the structure. They also are Alliance partisans, of course, who take advantage of every opportunity to influence other persons favorably toward the Alliance.
• The Alliance’s active members have, in addition to the financial-support task of the supporting members, the task of actively and regularly disseminating the Alliance’s propaganda material and winning new members and subscribers for the Alliance.
• From the ranks of our active and supporting members come our cadres, who are charged with specific responsibilities in the organization. For our cadres these responsibilities are the central elements in their lives, everything else being subordinate to the Alliance’s work. Only the very best of our members may become cadres, and once they do, a total commitment is demanded form them.
So that is what we’re doing now, and it is what we’ll continue to do in the future. As we grow, gaining more of a supporting base, more members to disseminate our ideas, and more cadres to add to our functional capabilities, we’ll be engaging in more different kinds of activities and on a larger scale, but our two basic tasks — sowing seeds and building our organizational structure — will remain the same. The alert member will keep this essential fact in mind and will evaluate every activity in which he engages by asking himself: Will this activity effectively disseminate the Alliance message, and, more importantly, will it win us new members and subscribers?
When the day comes that our organization has the capability for doing something other than those two things, you’ll hear about it.
* * *
Source: National Alliance BULLETIN, October 1978