November 21, 2008

Will Obama and the Democratic Congress repeal "don't ask, don't tell"?

Don't count on it!

23 comments:

Simon said...

Told you so.

Maguro said...

This is one of those things Obama won't get around to until the very end of his 8-10 year term.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Where is DTL? I anxiously await his keen insight and provacative commentary on this.

Meade said...

"Repealing the ban was an Obama campaign promise. However, Mr. Obama first wants to confer with the Joint Chiefs of Staff and his new political appointees at the Pentagon to reach a consensus and then" let them tell him what he should do.

TRO said...

Gays - the first of many special interest/identity-politics groups to be disappointed by Barry.

Simon said...

Meade, I have no objection to Obama deferring to the military on this. I wish he would; by position on § 654 is that if the military want it, they should get it, and if they want it gone, they should get that, too. I have no idea if gays serving openly in the military is bad, and neither does Congress; the best judges of that question are the military themselves, and their word should be decisive.

I find it objectionable, however, if Obama decides to hide his own unwillingness to tackle a controversial issue behind the military. He indicated during the campaign that he would work to eliminate § 654; he was wrong, and should recant, but he should man up and take the heat for it himself. He shouldn't try to have it both ways, pretending that he was all for gays until the military told him - out of the blue! I mean, he couldn't have predicted this! - that they want to keep it.

Simon said...

Sorry, my position, not by position.

Original Mike said...

Don't care.

David said...

So long as we know that, secretly in his heart, he agrees with each one of us, no matter what he has to say to get elected/stay popular/protect Democrat control of Congress/get re-elected/stay popular/maintain his political capital/keep the presidency in the Democrat's hands/burnish his place in history.

Meade said...

Simon:
Consult with the military, yes; defer, no.
Unless Obama WANTS to be weak.

Under our system, the military defers to the CIC who is elected by a majority of Electors who are appointed by the People. But why am _I_ telling YOU this?

Truman did not defer to the generals when he signed an executive order racially integrating the armed services. He didn't even consult with Congress. Did he? He just went ahead and used his power to do what needed to be done. Truman might not have been a popular president but he sure as hell wasn't a weak president.

holdfast said...

Good luck with that - recruiting and retention is about to take a huge hit. Say what you will about Bush, and there's plenty I don't like, but the guys in the military know that the administration supports them - gives them tough jobs to do, sure, but also the resources to do them and the personal backing of a president who has spent a ton of time visiting the troops in the field and the wounded. Everyone knows that Obama and most of the people in his administration don't like and don't understand the military - so if you can do it, now is a good time to get out.

A lot of people don't realize how hollowed out the military got in teh 1990s - war stocks of ammo and other consumables were drawn down to dangerous levels due to use in training, deployments and expiration. A lot of the best officers left due to politics and a booming exonomy - and a lot of the time-servers who remained were the Clintonista generals who performed so poorly in the early part of the war in Iraq - the zero defect, DACOWITZ-approved generals who don't know how to LEAD troops in the field. And all that said, Clinton wasn't even actively anti-military, he was just sort of meh. Obama and his team are going to be far more hard-core lefty and the hostility will be felt. DADT is just the icing on the cake.

Good luck to Obama with his Afstan surge and his invasion of Pakistan when all the best troops leave.

Revenant said...

Under our system, the military defers to the CIC who is elected by a majority of Electors who are appointed by the People.

I defer to my boss on the question of what tasks I should be working on. She defers to me on the question of how I ought to accomplish those tasks -- not because she doesn't have the right or the authority to tell me how to do it, but because her skills are managerial and mine are technical.

When I hire somebody to do landscaping for me, he defers to me on how I want the yard to look. I defer to him on how to get it looking that way -- for the same reasons as above.

The job of the CiC is to set goals for the military. The job of the Joint Chiefs is to determine how to meet those goals. Barack Obama is welcome to set a goal of "make the military a happy rainbow of equality" if he wants to, but the normal goals for the military are things like "protect America" and "win wars". Allowing homosexuals to openly serve either helps, hurts, or has no effect on those goals; it should not be a goal in itself. We're not paying half a trillion dollars a year so that a few million people can be exemplars of egalitarianism. :)

That being said, if the military does say "gays would be bad" they ought to provide more evidence than just a gut feeling that it would be bad, especially since it hasn't been bad in other military forces.

ElcubanitoKC said...

Hope and CHANGE!!

Baron Zemo said...

My dear lady you must know that black people do no like the gays.

Do they have to pass a constitutional amendment to prove that to you?

knox said...

Wow, you can virtually hear crickets over here. Where're all the Obama-lovers?

Bob said...

Obama yields to adults (Gates and Mullen) when they both respond with "WTF, we're fighting two wars right now!" after the social eingineering experiment is raised. The prospect that Biden's son is, in a small way, at risk may have assisted. If this proves true then one bullet dodged...

Synova said...

When they discussed gays serving openly in the military on Blackfive the opinions seemed about 50/50. And probably a majority of those thinking it was a bad idea cited the unnecessary hassle of it all.

Because what are they going to do?

Will it be like integrating blacks (this is usually the example people bring up) where sexual orientation, like race, will be entirely ignored?

Or will it be like integrating women into the military forces with mandatory accommodation for privacy and many career fields remaining off limits to gay personnel?

Now would be the time to do it, though, while we're still deployed enough to see and deal with any problems, but not in a position where the distraction is going to overly impact the mission. Waiting a few years might mean things heat up again, or that we're in full transition mode to a peace-time military, either of which would be worse timing than now.

blake said...

Don't you have to go back to the Janissaries to find an effective homosexual fighting force?

No, seriously, gays have always served in the military, and in some ways DADT works out pretty well. What if there's nothing wrong with having gays in the military, but there is something wrong with them being "out"?

The late Colonel Hackworth opposed gays in the military on the basis of morale. Here's an interesting open letter from him to Clinton.

I wish I could find his explanation, but it had to do with how young men perceive themselves in elite combat organizations, and how flagrant homosexuality worked against that image.

'course, Hack was often wrong, but he was always worth listening to.

chickenlittle said...

how flagrant homosexuality worked against that image.

Flagrant sexuality of any flavor undermines the military, or am I missing something? Shouldn't aspect of DADT remain in place?

blake said...

Flagrant sexuality of any flavor undermines the military, or am I missing something? Shouldn't aspect of DADT remain in place?

The way I understood it was that basically, it's a macho thing. Fighting is a manly thing. Done by men. To other men.

So, between all the sweating, and thrusting, and weapons discharge, it's just no place for a gay man.

Heh. No, I'm not explaining it well.

I'll look for that Hack interview.

Again, it wouldn't meet any kind of "science" test, as Rev wants, 'cause, you know, what're you going to do? Have a gay military and a non-gay military and see which does best?

Joan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joan said...

the normal goals for the military are things like "kill people" and "break things".

Fixed. ;)

former law student said...

Where're all the Obama-lovers?

I'm happy that Obama has his priorities straight. Once the economy is humming again, and our southern border is at peace, then he can work on letting gay soldiers express their sexuality.

Truman did not defer to the generals when he signed an executive order racially integrating the armed services. He didn't even consult with Congress. Did he? He just went ahead and used his power to do what needed to be done.

Truman had led grunts into combat -- he had earned the military's credibility and respect. Obama and Clinton had to tiptoe around the military experts because they were virgins. Like a priest counselling married couples, they have a hurdle to overcome.