Count the Lies

There are a few notes from this USA Today web piece on the new Brady president, and I decided to turn it into a game.

Youth anti-violence advocate Daniel Gross has been elected to head the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and the Brady Center, the Washington-based organization promoting gun control plans to announce Monday.

In the opening sentence, we have two already. He was hired, not elected. There may have technically been a vote by the Board on whether to extend an offer, but he was hired. We know this because the Board hired a recruiting firm (multiple times, it seems) to find someone for the job. When a recruiter finds a candidate for a job and that applicant then interviews with multiple people who mutually come to a decision on extending an offer, we don’t say they were elected to do their job. They were hired.

Also, we know they announced last week. Although, to be fair to Dan Gross, it would seem that they didn’t plan to do so, so maybe it doesn’t count as an outright lie. I’ll count it for half.

Gross is cofounder and executive director of the Center to Prevent Youth Violence and was elected to the Brady post by the organization’s board of trustees. He replaces former Brady president Paul Helmke, former mayor of Fort Wayne, Ind., who announced in June he would step down on July 10. Helmke’s resignation followed a five-year commitment he’d made to serve the organization starting in 2006.

This bring our tally to 4 1/2 lies. First, we have the elected crap again. The Board came to agreement to extend a job offer, not hold an election of Brady Campaign members. Second, Paul Helmke & the Brady Campaign were all quite vocal that he wasn’t stepping down, they weren’t welcoming him back. Along those same lines, the third sentence is an outright fabrication that he resigned since it has been reported by mainstream media outlets when Helmke was giving interviews left and right last year that he didn’t want to leave the Brady Campaign, the Board refused to renew his contract.

After this paragraph, the rest of the story is the standard gun control manipulation counting suicides as the same as crime, and talking about how many children (many of whom do not meet any definition that a regular person defines as a child) die by guns. Following that, it’s all about feelings. I’m not exaggerating when I describe his quotes as sounding like Bette Midler in Beaches.

“Policy is a big part of the solution but people have to realize that this isn’t a political issue, this is an issue that’s claiming the lives of 30,000 people every year and eight kids every day and we need to approach it with that kind of urgency,” Gross said.

“The bottom line is making people care about this issue and care about it personally and deeply,” he added.

“Now, tell us the truth. I want you to pull out all the stops. We know the performer. Who is the person? Who is C.C. Bloom?”

“Oh, Marla. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve asked myself that very same question. Well, first and foremost, I would have to say that C.C. feels things – deeply. C.C. is a deeply feeling person. And, because of this, is deeply emotional. Do you understand?”

I would like to thank Dan Gross for inspiring me to pull out my copy of Beaches which I haven’t watched in far too long. I admit that I teared up even fast forwarding to get to the interview scene.

Back to more serious issues, his comments definitely highlight that the Brady Campaign is likely to make themselves even more scarce on Capitol Hill. It looks like we need to focus on MAIG’s efforts in DC since they are the new and upcoming gun control group looking to pass actual policy instead of just trying to make you feel deeply like C.C. Bloom.

Also of note, he had a random foundation director from Beverly Hills email the reporter about himself. I guess he is trying to highlight that he’s bringing a fundraising network to the table, but those funds are going to be pretty well restricted to the (c)3 that can’t lobby much.

11 thoughts on “Count the Lies”

  1. The David Boehnett Foundation has always been a big supporter of the Bradys.

  2. Also of note, he had a random foundation director from Beverly Hills email the reporter about himself. I guess he is trying to highlight that he’s bringing a fundraising network to the table, but those funds are going to be pretty well restricted to the (c)3 that can’t lobby much.

    I wouldn’t count out §501(c)(3) orgs as not a threat. Right now they are nothing more than an annoyance in litigation but their lies get taken by fact by judges. We need more facts to counteract their lies.

    But if they funnel more money into litigation then they may be able to do some damage. They funded the successful suit against Kahr arms (and I am not defending Kahr arms in the least here), through ironically a lawyer whose son appears to be a gang banger and/or drug dealer. I stress appears. The only thing I can say factually is that the son is facing charges related to drug dealing and a drive by shooting including various firearms and drug possession charges based on them finding him in a SUV tied to a drive by with bullet holes in it.

    Anyhow, there are any number of things money in their pockets can do right now.

    1. I don’t completely count out the role of (c)3 organizations. But, this does represent a shift worth noting. Beyond a call for mandate for “childproofed guns” by 2015, the Brady Board put zero political and legislative leadership in their recruitment ad for a new president.

      I do realize that the legal work is vital and that’s clearly an arm they want to beef up in terms of funding. Basically, it means that Dennis Henigan made sure that he’ll have someone raising money so he can keep trying to get Heller overturned. But, given their poor strategy on that front so far, I’m not terribly concerned about it. Yes, they will insert themselves into far more cases. I just don’t think that we expected any less of them.

  3. Just as an FYI, “elected” can also just mean “chose.” Using “elect” instead of “choose” can imply greater importance or a more cautious selection process. In short, those aren’t lies.

    1. I don’t think that’s why he’s using the word repeatedly. I think he’s trying to make it look like he was elected like you would think of in an actual election.

      1. That doesn’t really make sense. I know USA Today is written on a 3rd grade level, but pretty much everyone knows the difference between an elected official and the president of a lobbyist group.

        1. I disagree. The leadership of the NRA is elected by a vote of the members. In fact, 1.275 million ballots were mailed last year. So, considering that some groups – in the same issue – do have actual elections, I believe the choice to use the word elect repeatedly indicates his trying to present it as something greater than simply “interviewed by a group that later extended an offer.”

          1. I think there are plenty of legitimate things to complain about when it comes to the Brady Campaign. You don’t need to invent silly things.

            1. You’re welcome to your view. I happen to think that he’s purposely choosing the word to make it seem like a broader organization and movement. Afterall, that’s basically what he was hired to do. If you go back and read the job description that they created for him, he’s to create a perception of grassroots activism for their model. His background is in spin, so this is a choice of wording that both fits his background and helps meet the job requirements given to him by their board.

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