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Old 08-06-2019, 10:07 AM
Maastricht is offline
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Start lobbying!!


The NRA spent only 5 million dollars on pro gun lobbying in 2018. https://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/cl...0082&year=2018
In 2018 there were 40.000 gun deaths in the US. ( about two thirds suicides) .
That adds up to 125 dollars a life. For every 125 dollar spent on a lobbyist or “donated” to a pro-gun politician, an American citizen died who would otherwise have lived.
(Yes, suicides drop too. The number of suicides drops dramatically when people don’t have access to guns).

I am flabbergasted lobbying is so cheap and so effective. Which brings me to the question I’d like to debate: why do Americans spend money donating to individual politicians, when they could also pool their resources and hire their own lobbyists? Instead they squander the money on Sanders who loses it competing with Warren. And then the pro-life groups, ( I mean, people who think Americans should not be shot while in church or scool or the mall) go on to another protest March in Washington. If half of the people had donated their travel fare to cover the cost of a good lobbying firm, they could have matched the spending of the NRA.

Last edited by Maastricht; 08-06-2019 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 08-06-2019, 12:22 PM
Ashtura is offline
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It's cheap because of the second amendment.
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Old 08-06-2019, 06:48 PM
Thing Fish is offline
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It's not a matter of the amount of money spent. The NRA's strength is that they control enough single issue voters to be a decisive factor in Republican primaries, making it very difficult for any even slightly reasonable person to be nominated as a Republican. And once they're nominated, partisan momentum takes over; the people who feel strongly enough on the other side of the issue to base their general election vote on it are all Democrats anyway.

For comparison, the National Abortion Rights Action League spent only $120,000 on lobbying last year. The Democratic caucus isn't almost entirely pro-choice because they are dependent on pro-choice groups for funding; it's because a significant portion of Democratic voters feel strongly enough about the issue to refuse to vote for any primary candidate not endorsed by these groups.
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Old 08-07-2019, 02:33 PM
UltraVires is offline
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I think this is still in bounds for today because I'm not debating gun control. If not, I apologize.

But, I think the problem is that implicit in the OP's question is that money simply buys off politicians. I would not make such a bold statement without documentary proof. It could easily be said that the reason that the NRA has so much money to lobby is because so many voters are passionate and single issue voters about the Second Amendment, therefore the politicians feel the need to voter/cater/grovel in accordance with these wishes.

It's sort of a chicken/egg thing, but IMHO, the votes and not the money are what is important. If Bill Gates started a PAC and spent, say $20 million in lobbying (4 times the NRA) for anti-gun causes, I don't think you would see much of a change in attitudes. It's not the money, it's the votes, which is really how it should be.

But you might object and say that the latest poll shows 65% in support of gun control measure X while only 35% oppose so it must be the money. The issue you get into there is the strength and depth of the support. Although those 65% may support the bill, they would likely otherwise vote for the politician who opposed it because their support isn't that strong. They answered a poll one way but otherwise couldn't give a shit about the issue. What you see in NRA members are strong one issue voters.

That is important and you simply cannot replicate that by forming a lobbying group, no matter how much money you have. It is about the votes.

Last edited by UltraVires; 08-07-2019 at 02:34 PM.
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Old 08-07-2019, 02:47 PM
Euphonious Polemic is offline
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How much of the NRA's lobbying cash came directly from Russia?

I"m sure I could run a good lobbying campaign if I was able to get tens of millions of dollars from a Putin ally to help my cause.
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Old 08-07-2019, 03:11 PM
Velocity is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maastricht View Post
The NRA spent only 5 million dollars on pro gun lobbying in 2018. https://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/cl...0082&year=2018
In 2018 there were 40.000 gun deaths in the US. ( about two thirds suicides) .
That adds up to 125 dollars a life. For every 125 dollar spent on a lobbyist or “donated” to a pro-gun politician, an American citizen died who would otherwise have lived.
OK, hold on, this is some seriously flawed logic. Even if the NRA vanished overnight, there are still many pro-gun groups in America. The 2nd Amendment would still exist. 300 million guns would still exist. Millions of people owned guns before the NRA ever existed. Many died from guns before the NRA ever existed.


The idea that there is a direct correlation of $125 in NRA lobbying = 1 American gun death is highly flawed.
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Old 08-07-2019, 06:07 PM
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OK, hold on, this is some seriously flawed logic. Even if the NRA vanished overnight, there are still many pro-gun groups in America. The 2nd Amendment would still exist. 300 million guns would still exist. Millions of people owned guns before the NRA ever existed. Many died from guns before the NRA ever existed.


The idea that there is a direct correlation of $125 in NRA lobbying = 1 American gun death is highly flawed.
Well, it goes along with the OP in the sense that it raises the question of how politicians would react in the absence of a strong lobbying group. Suppose the NRA did disappear tomorrow. Would it matter that there are other Second Amendment groups? Is money the determining factor? How would politicians know how strongly some voters support gun rights?
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Old 08-07-2019, 06:43 PM
Euphonious Polemic is offline
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The NRA used to be about gun safety and responsible gun ownership.

That time is long past.

The NRA as it currently exists is about taking money from anyone at all , as much as possible (including money from questionable Russian sources). It then uses that money to give to politicians, partly to protect gun manufacturers, and partly to ensure that weapons are freely available to absolutely anyone, anytime, regardless of ability or mental condition. This includes weapons suitable for the battlefield, whose sole purpose is to kill as many humans as possible in as short a time as possible.
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Old 08-07-2019, 06:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
OK, hold on, this is some seriously flawed logic. Even if the NRA vanished overnight, there are still many pro-gun groups in America. The 2nd Amendment would still exist. 300 million guns would still exist. Millions of people owned guns before the NRA ever existed. Many died from guns before the NRA ever existed.


The idea that there is a direct correlation of $125 in NRA lobbying = 1 American gun death is highly flawed.
Please get an update on the 300 million guns in the USA. That number is at least as old as the Clinton administration. There have been an additional 320 million NICS FBI background checks in just the last 20 years, since 1999. 2 or 2.5 million more each and every month. And there were plenty of guns around before then.

While background checks do not directly indicate gun sales they are pretty close since most people who shouldn't buy guns don't bother going trough the trouble. The checks are a good indication of sales.

So call it 600 million guns and you will be a little bit closer to the reality.
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Old 08-07-2019, 06:57 PM
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Quote:
Quoth Velocity:

The idea that there is a direct correlation of $125 in NRA lobbying = 1 American gun death is highly flawed.
Yeah, that calculation is rather meaningless. Should we think that that ratio is too high? If so, would it be better if there were more deaths? Should we think that it's too low? If so, would it be better if the NRA spent more money? If one thinks that both NRA spending and gun deaths are too high, then it might make sense to multiply those two numbers, but then you'd get an even bigger number, and you still wouldn't have any good way to interpret that bigger number.

Euphonious Polemic, the NRA's goal isn't to get weapons to absolutely anyone. It's to get weapons to white people. You'll notice that they never say anything about black men getting killed for having a gun, nor did they take Obama's side when Republicans attacked him for the Fast Furious thing.

EDIT: Dallas Jones, background checks might be a good proxy for sales, but do they indicate new sales? How many of those are used guns, that were already counted in the 300 million?

And if that many new guns really have been added to the population, doesn't that put the lie to the claim that there's too many to make any difference? If we can prevent the number from doubling again in the next two decades, that sounds like a huge difference, to me.

Last edited by Chronos; 08-07-2019 at 06:59 PM.
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