Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Paul Helmke's Alternate Universe Where Freedom is Slavery and Peace is War

Why is this man laughing? Perhaps we should ask, what is he smoking?

Helmke's "Middle Ground" GPS reading wants us standing thirty meters on the other side of the edge of the tyrant's cliff, where the only thing that hangs in the air is his doublespeak.

Paul Helmke dropped by his old partners in propaganda crime at the Fort Wayne News Sentinel the other day, found here, for a little chat. As you can read, Helmke doesn't want our firearms or our liberty, he just wants . . . our firearms and our liberty. He just hopes no will notice the doublespeak he uses. Sheesh. And this is what passes for journalism these days? More on this later, for I have a full day today.


Article published May 11, 2009

Helmke strives for middle ground on gun rights, control
As Brady Campaign head, he favors some limits on purchases.

Paul Helmke gets a little frustrated when he returns to Fort Wayne.

“Nobody listens to you anymore,” Helmke joked during a recent informal question-and-answer session at The News-Sentinel. “So I went to (Washington) D.C., where nobody listens to me anymore.”

Such is the life of a former mayor in his hometown - Helmke served 1988-2000 - and a gun-control advocate in a nation with 280 million privately owned guns.

Yet that hasn't stopped Helmke from talking. Since leaving politics, he's become a national voice for gun control: July will mark his third year as president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence.

The job comes with a price. Helmke is often vilified by gun-rights advocates. When he suggests renewing the assault weapons ban to reduce killings with semiautomatic rifles or stricter monitoring of gun sales to keep them out of the hands of criminals, he is often accused of trying to ban or confiscate all guns.

“You and Helmke don't know what you're talking about!!” wrote one angry reader responding to a Feb. 24 article in The News-Sentinel in which Helmke noted that Indiana's gun laws require no gun safety training or limits on the number of guns purchased. “You anti-gunners won't be happy until all guns are confiscated and Marxist views are shoved down the throats of freedom-loving people.”

Opponents also link him to conspiracy theories.

“America is waking up to 9/11 as an inside job,” wrote one reader responding to the article. “You reporters haven't been doing (your) job.”

The U.S. leads the world in gun deaths per year, with about 31,000 Americans killed in 2005, according to the Centers for Disease Control. About 55 percent of those deaths were suicides. Roughly 40 percent were homicides, and Indiana ranked 21st in the nation in gun deaths, according to the Violence Policy Center, which analyzed CDC statistics.

Yet Helmke said discussion of gun control frequently leads to hysterical responses from opponents invoking slippery-slope analogies and Adolf Hitler's rise to power. Helmke said a lack of gun-control laws in post-World War I Germany helped fuel Hitler's takeover, but try explaining that to gun-rights advocates.

“Gun control is a topic that people don't like to talk about in any sort of rational way,” he said, noting some favor outlawing all private gun ownership, while others say there should be no gun laws. Helmke favors a middle ground. He would limit how many guns people can buy at one time, ban sales of semiautomatic rifles and increase law oversight of gun sales.

Helmke said he was hired in part because of his centrist reputation as a Midwestern Republican. While elected three times, he ruffled feathers in his party by pushing for a revenue-raising local income tax and an annexation that expanded the city's tax base.

It was also during his tenure as mayor that Helmke saw the devastation caused by gun violence in Fort Wayne in the 1990s, including 1997 when the city saw a record 42 homicides. His support for gun control led him to meet Brady Center co-founder James Brady, the press secretary to President Ronald Reagan who was shot in the head and paralyzed during the 1981 assassination attempt on Reagan.

Brady helped get a law passed requiring federal background checks for sales by gun dealers and an assault-weapons ban from 1994 to 2003. Nonetheless, Helmke admits it's been frustrating trying to get laws passed to keep criminals from obtaining guns through thefts, private sales, straw purchases or from corrupt gun dealers. Some 40 percent of all gun purchases have no background checks because they're done by private sellers or at gun shows, and Helmke said states, including Indiana, rarely report mentally ill gun owners to the federal government.

“All of our gun laws are basically set with the presumption that we don't want to do anything to make it hard for anybody to get a gun,” Helmke said. “People always say there are all these laws on the books. There aren't any laws on the books.”

While it's been an uphill battle, Helmke said he'll continue to push for reasonable laws that don't infringe on the Second Amendment.

“I wouldn't be doing it if I didn't think we could make progress,” he said. “Politicians need to show a little courage on this stuff, and they're not willing to.”


Anonymous said...

I see they've cherry picked comments from a wide-open internet page to keep pounding the meme that anyone opposed to their ideas is simply a nut.

Yeah, all of us freedom-minded folks think 9/11 was an inside job. What hogwash.

Anonymous said...

Nice photo of Ellsworth Toohey, there...

CorbinKale said...

'Reasonable infringement' advocate = domestic enemy of the Constitution.

Helmke will have to live with his choice.

Sean said...

9/11 WAS an inside job, if you consider that the FBI, CIA, NSA, and all the rest of the morons with billions of tax dollars and power and personnel were so inept and incompetent that they didn't stop the attack. Add to it they didn't take any responsability for it, and you've got a parasite that says it has a right to your blood, and it's too bad you are dying. Helmke is a snake, charming the mass of sheeple and coiling around them at the same time. Snakes make almost no noise, and to many, they're pretty. Just ask Eve.

Johnny said...

The scary thing is tho, I really think that people like this actually believe this kind of doublethink. Their minds are actually faulty and they cannot distinguish truth from lies, they can only relate to what they feel. They actually understand nothing about other people nor anything about logic and rationality.

Bob S. said...

Notice also how they use raw numbers, not rates to determine the highest firearm deaths?

America is not number 1 when the per capita rates are considered. Gee which country would have more deaths- a country of 100,000 people or 300,000,000?

Defender said...

If more than one percent of guns we own were ever used in crime;
If a little gun control never became a lot of gun control or absolute gun bans in cities we mention every day;
If California had not mandated registering semi-auto rifles, telling residents they'd be ALLOWED to keep them then and immediately ordered registered guns seized;
If noncriminals' guns had not been taken AT GUNPOINT in New Orleans;
If over 80 Texas citizens white, black and brown had not been laid seige to for 51 days over a SUSPECTED GUN TAX OMISSION and killed in a combat engineering tank assault with ILLEGAL flammable tear gas pumped into a confined space;
If ATF agents had not used an obscure gun law to try to entrap Randy Weaver into spying on his neighbors, intentionally summonsing him on the WRONG date for a hearing and then assaulting his home, killing his wife and son;
If these and a thousand other acts of tyranny had not happened...
... Paul Helmke would STILL be 12 pounds of sh-- in a 10-pound bag. He bears direct responsibility for incalculable human suffering with his utopian happy talk.
He only THINKS he's seen "gun violence." If he and his comrades get their laws passed, he'll wish for pre-2009, "the good old days."


j said...

Orwell was indeed a prophet.

Brock Townsend said...

"in a nation with 280 million privately owned guns."

What happened to the other 700,000+?:)

ReverendFranz said...

That is some sea of disinformation. As Kevin Baker said the other day, noting every lie would make a great drinking game, except no one could or should, drink that much that quickly.

Defender said...

My friend in the media belongs to the Concerned Journalists of America. Their latest online meeting: "From News Gatekeeper to Information Valet."
Subtitle is "Saving the Journalism Industry" or something like that.
Some suicides just cannot be prevented.

Anonymous said...

Mike: It is the Fort Wayne News Sentinel, not Indianapolis (as you state in your lead-in. Helmke was mayor of Fort Wayne, IN.

I grew up there.


HPL said...

did you catch the "related" article about how semi-auto rifles should be banned? Makes a nice companion piece of absurdity:


Anonymous said...

"They can kill from more than four football fields away, shred police officers' vests, fire up to 75 bullets at a time - and they're increasingly showing up in criminals' hands."

I am interested to know what semi-automatic weapon can fire up to 75 bullets at a time. Does this weapon have 75 barrels? Is this a hand-held weapon, as I am guessing the recoil would be significant?

Anonymous said...

"They can kill from more than four football fields away, shred police officers' vests, fire up to 75 bullets at a time - and they're increasingly showing up in criminals' hands."

What's worse my fellow anon is that the first to points can be made of the basic deer rifle.

Which is why they're included in the article.