Today’s Lesson from the White House: Take Hostages

As we celebrate President Obama signing into law the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, I’d like to congratulate the activists who made it happen. This is the progressive high point of Obama’s presidency so far, and it came because of the hard work of a lot of people who relentlessly fought to win civil rights.

May this civil rights victory lead to full equality for gay men and women.

But I wanted to also note what this moment says about Obama’s system of governance: that the only thing he responds to is hostage-taking.

FDL has written a lot about Obama’s serial capitulation to those — whether the Republican caucus or people like Joe Lieberman and Max Baucus — who hold legislation hostage.

But this victory, the biggest progressive victory under Obama, is largely due to the fact that a number of men and women chained themselves — took themselves hostages, effectively — to the gates of the White House.

And while I doubt the optics of environmentalists or housing activists chaining themselves to the White House (with their consequent arrest) will be so toxic to the White House, the lesson does seem to be that the only thing Obama (who bills himself a pragmatist and loves to claim he listens to all sides) listens to is hostage-taking.

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Emptywheel Twitterverse
bmaz @ktumulty @OKnox Now THAT is ridiculous.
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bmaz @emptywheel @MikeScarcella Pretty interested to see what Leon does with this. He doesn't give that many fucks these days. cc @joshgerstein
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bmaz @AriMelber Be pretty interesting to see how he is sentenced.
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bmaz @johnson_carrie @MikeScarcella Jeebus, today is going to be Crappy NatSec Law day, isn't it? Blergh.
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bmaz @OKnox Come Mr.Knox, visit, sip a margarita and listen to music with me.
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bmaz RT @johnson_carrie: This is significant https://t.co/tQcfVjFTOM
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bmaz @Popehat I have done this before on internet john doe cases. Good for you, it is rewarding. The side of angels you are.
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JimWhiteGNV RT @lrozen: Obama: Prohibition on Iran weaponizing nuclear power continues in perpetuity. We will have had 15 years of knowledge of their p…
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bmaz @benjaminwittes My god, those are not on YOU are they???
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bmaz @OKnox Uh, I LIKE The Doors. Have all their albums on vinyl and occasionally still listen to them. Am I a bad human??
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bmaz @SunsetGunShot Torino?
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