T-RUMPS NRA CONNECTION



NEW YORK CITY  ATTORNEY GENERAL

WANTS THE NRA GONE… AND HAS A  VERY

STRONG CASE… LONG TIME COMING

T-RUMPS BEST FIENDS AND SUPPORTERS



When Is A Charity Not A Charity?  When It’s Corrupt!
9/20  —  In the London Review of Books, Deborah Friedell traces the past, present, and potential future of the National Rifle Association, America’s foremost pro-gun membership, political-pressure, and lobbying group. Launched by Union Army veterans after the Civil War to promote marksmanship, the group didn’t take on the political bent for which it’s now known until President Lyndon Johnson sought a national gun registry and other controls, which the group opposed. 

The T-RUMP era, ironically, has hurt the group’s bottom line, Friedell writes, as “ Members became complacent with an ally in the White House.” As The Daily Beast reported in 2018, the group reported a big decline in revenue from membership dues in 2017.
Underpinning Friedell’s outline is the notion that the NRA does well when people feel threatened that their guns will be taken away. To that end, Friedell writes, the group is gearing up for a fight with New York Attorney General Letitia James over executives’ use of funds, which could energize supporters.  Charitable no, fraud yes, finally an accounting
 

ZEDEK, ZEDEK, TILDORF… Justice shall you pursue…RBG


  Twenty Years Ago - Some Stories Take Time…Today Truth —  I wrote these stories and comments on the news for decades about what I thought was the corruption and wrongdoing by the NRA.  They are a powerful lobby, we got nowhere.  Even lost a friend of thirty-five years, prejudiced, since he is a NRA supporter since he sells guns.  I  have nephews working the case so I could not let my friend know.   This week it came to a head. The NY Attorney general won’t get laughed off and dismissed as I did.  This is as my friend. 

For many years when younger I was a strong supporter Of the NRA.  Then for many years I watched an organization I believed in go to the darkside, something that I actually promoted and spoke nice about.  At rallies and gatherings I solicited for those to take on membership and responsibilities and protect those rights in our Constitution, mainly the Second Amendment.  I humbly apologize, to those who signed up.  This is not the NRA I joined, this is a corrupt scam.  And with a few players you might know, great supporters of lies.  How could you leave out Donald T-RUMP…

The second biggest mistake I made was voting Republican and I for 48 years supported the party… Again I apologize for believing in something and promoting it… And for the same reasons, being lied to, being corrupt and now it appears the NRA, Donald T-RUMP the fake President  and the GOP are connected.  I left both, and hate the third for what he is…they are polluted, dirty and reek from cronyism, and as an investigative writer, sportsman and gun lover, the truths must come out.

So, an upgrade is needed, as the two came together as to the NRA becoming the lobbyist for the Gun Industry  The truth must be brought forth and the scam exposed.  I’m working putting updates to the truth into what I wrote in the past because nothing changed. What was true then,  is true now and it is even dirtier, very dirty.  The membership is nothing but a cash cow driven by lies, falsehoods, lies and scammers and ignorance.


Decades Ago,  I Did Not Like This Man, An Agitator, He’s Still Alive…
NRA executive vice president and CEO Wayne Lapierre voiced his lies again at the Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC  Lapierre made the following heartwarming statements.  “ Can we protect so much with armed security, while we drop our kids off at school, that are so-called gun-free zones, that are wide-open targets for any crazy madman bent on evil to come there first? 

In every community, PTAs, teachers’ unions, local law enforcement, moms and dads – they all must come together to implement the very best strategy to harden their schools, including effective trained, armed security that will absolutely protect every innocent child in this country. 

That has to happen now. Evil walks among us, and God help us if we do not harden our schools and protect our kids. ...

"I refuse to leave this stage until I say one more time that we must immediately harden our schools. Every day— every day, young children are being dropped off at schools that are virtually wide open, soft targets for anyone bent on mass murder.

It should not be easier for a madman to shoot up a school than a bank or a jewelry store or some Hollywood gala. Schools must be the most hardened targets in this country.


DRAFT DODGER AND NERVOUS DISORDER

It was originally organized in 1871 to “promote and encourage rifle shooting on a scientific basis” in the United States, and it seems to have succeeded; generations later, the National Rifle Association has become the United States’ most high-profile gun rights lobbying group.

The organization’s executive vice president and CEO is Wayne R. LaPierre, an outspoken defender of the Second Amendment and critic of all but the most minimal gun control policies.

In the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in 2012 which resulted in the deaths of more than two dozen children and adults, LaPierre famously suggested that a “national database of lunatics” would do more to solve the nation’s gun violence problem than banning the assault-style weapons so often used in such crimes.

LaPierre’s repeated assertions linking gun violence with mental illness (assertions vigorously challenged by mental health professionals) appear to have backfired on him, at least on the Internet, supplying fodder for rumors and memes promoting the claim that he obtained a medical (4-F) draft deferment during the Vietnam War by reason of a “nervous disorder.” Most variants state or imply that he actually faked the condition:

NRA President Wayne LaPierre rec’d Viet Nam draft deferment for mental illness labeled “nervous disorder”. Shouldn’t be able to own a gun.


The NRA’S Four Biggest Lies -


ONE -  The Jack-Booted Foreign Soldiers On Our Soil  
We have all witnessed or listened to their convoluted redundant rhetoric time after time.  The claims of  jackbooted foreign soldiers on American Soil getting ready to take over the country.  TRUTH:  More like the South American and European regular troops the Army is training in counter insurgency and drug dealing the US provides that training at what is called the School of the America’s at Fort Benning, GA and has for as long as I can remember.  I have attended many functions there. I have stayed in those barracks and attended many of the classes with these trainers from friendly services. These are  loyal anti-drug fighters and I got to know a few and that representation LaPierre made is just another one of his big lies.


TWO - The So-called the New World Order  —  Make believe conspiracy order framed up by Wayne La Pierre similar to the visions Donald T-RUMP gets.  Nothing but dreams, wet at best.  Had nothing to do with taking over the world by secret forces.  It has been used and around for years.
Ignorant people believe the lies and thats the real problem.  You can’t shoot people because they are naive and dumb.  The term New World Order (NWO) in conspiracy theories is the hypothesis of a secretly emerging totalitarian world government. The common theme in conspiracy theories about a New World Order is that a secretive power elite with a globalist agenda is conspiring to eventually rule the world through an authoritarian world government—which will replace sovereign nation-states—and an all-encompassing propaganda whose ideology hails the establishment of the New World Order as the culmination of history’s progress

TRUTH — Actually it stems from ancient times Which had nothing to do with guns, it involved financial worldly growth of the new players in commerce and finance like the BRIC countries which are Brazil, Russia, India and China, nothing more. 

THREE —  Those Annoying Black Helicopters —  And more claims of spotting Black Helicopters.  TRUTH:  There were no black helicopters swooping down on your back forty other than mosquito control boys which will be in abundance this year because of the ZIKA bug.  And they are not all black some are white, some red, some yellow…rumors and lies from the NRA. 

The only Black Helicopter I ever saw was I believe owned by Hugh Hefner and the Playboy corporation, Black with a white bunny logo. Who in their right mind wants a helicopter sitting on the Tarmac cooking away, and if you went down at night dusk or dawn they would never find you. 


FOUR —  Those Threats they’ll Take Your Guns Away  —  The  Second Amendment Lies And Damn Truth For a Change. There is no assault on the second amendment. The unsubstantiated rhetoric “Soon they’ll be taking your guns away”.   The NRA cries that no matter what’s going on in the political world, it portends an imminent massive gun confiscation with President Obama wanting more background checks?   

This claim — prominent among gun-rights advocates — implies that the Second Amendment establishes not just a right to own guns, but a right that the government cannot legally limit.   None of our rights work this way.  "The Supreme Court has said repeatedly that no right under the Constitution is absolute," says Adam Winkler, a law professor at UCLA and the author of "Gunfight: The Battle over the Right to Bear Arms in America. “ In general, where the government has very strong reasons to restrict a right, it can.”


FIVE — Tell that to the 59 dead, 527 Wounded at the Massacre in Las Vegas  —  The Supreme Court declined to review local laws that prohibit certain kinds of weapons like semiautomatic guns.  “We see a lot more absolutist rhetoric today than we did in the past,” Winkler says, "partly because we have over the last 40 years seen the rise of a rather extreme pro-gun movement, led by the NRA."  

And the excuse about 2nd amendment rights and denial of service for those on federal lists such as no-fly and terrorist who might be denied a weapon or concealed carry permit don’t carry easily with me.  We can afford to affront someone once in a while, but we can’t afford another San Bernardino.  Thats a weak excuse and it’s about time a few in Congress step up since their party is turning in a bad direction anyway.  

Strange today with fewer Americans living in rural areas and hunting no longer as popular a recreational activity as it once was, far fewer Americans own sporting guns today than a generation or two ago according to data from the General Social Survey. And their numbers tell the story of a gun culture, for hunting purpose often a rifle and a shotgun has changed to a culture of mostly handguns and assault weapons. 

Less than one week ago South Dakota passed a bill allowing teachers in both primary and secondary grades to be armed with guns. The proposal for such a measure started shortly after Sandy Hook and marketing toward this goal stated popping up on various NRA supported sites.   

The good news is that there appears to be a grassroots movement against this “grassroots movement” that is now funded by the weapons industry. The NRA is growing increasingly out of touch with its original goals and even with its own membership. It is estimated that as many as 83% of NRA members are okay with background checks at a time when the organization is trying to remove all barriers. You see, members also have family they would like to keep safe. 


HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF 

Murrah Building Bombing —  On April 19, 1995, just six days after LaPierre sent out his NRA fundraising letter, the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City was destroyed by a bomb, killing 168 people.

It was later discovered that the conspirators behind the Oklahoma City bombing, Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols, were also angry over gun control laws and the federal government’s involvement in the Ruby Ridge and Waco tragedies.  Gun control advocates suggested that the inflammatory rhetoric in LaPierre’s letter had encouraged the bombing. 


Hitler Propaganda Tactics  — Listening to Wayne LaPierre is like listening to Adolf Hitler, all the conversation is about the evil ones, the soft targets, the gun free zones, and it’s never about the 331 million people here and the 350 million guns presently reportable, and we don’t know how many illegal guns and users are in that mix.  

Hours later, Trump was at the White House talking about school safety after last week's mass shooting at a Parkland, Fla., high school. Notice, T-RUMP used some of the same talking points, key words and phrases as LaPierre (again, emphasis ours):


T-Rump Americas Greatest Liar —  “ We have to harden our schools, not soften them. A gun-free zone to a killer or somebody who wants to be a killer, that's like going in for the ice cream.
That's like 'here I am, take me.' We have to get smart on gun-free zones. When they see 'this is a gun-free zone,' that means that nobody has a gun except them, nobody's going to be shooting bullets in the other direction. And they see that, it's such a beautiful target. They live for gun-free zones.

“Now what I'd recommend doing is the people that do carry, we give them a bonus, we give them a little bit of a bonus, because frankly they'd feel more comfortable having the gun anyway, you give them a little bit of a bonus, so practically for free you've now made the school into a hardened target. ...  


The NRA Dogma  —  Wayne LaPierre, regularly describes America as a kind of place where only the armed can survive. As he wrote in a 2013 article, “Hurricanes, Tornados. Riots, Terrorists, Gangs, Lone Criminals.  You need a gun”.  The NRA and the gun manufacturers are in a symbiotic relationship, where they both benefit whenever guns become a political issue.  He has created the maniacal enterprise of fear, retribution, a touch of insanity and the weak in our society have succumbed.  Four of the last shooters were not sane enough to be near a firearm.

For the NRA, it’s about members and money. Follow the money, for the gun manufacturers, it’s about sales and protection from legal liability.  

And as long as gun owners are kept agitated, angry, and afraid, they both win.  Many will believe anything, other than true sportsman they qualify in lower educated and just like joining stupid clubs as justification for their weaknesses. Weak-minders flourish when amongst other weak-minders. 

They are praised as Patriots by some and dangerous loose cannons or gun nuts by others and when the weak-minded find cause we will have people killing each other.  It has already happened.  The seventeen year old patriot who killed two protesters.  His parents for allowing him an illegal weapon under age should be in jail.

In the US, there are now somewhere around 310 million guns, according to the Pew Research Center.  That’s almost one gun for every person in the nation. Judges and legislators across the political spectrum recognize the constitutional right to bear arms.  And gun and ammunition sales to private citizens are a significant part of a roughly $15 billion industry that’s seeing plenty of growth.

More Points Of Light  —  Only Intelligent People May Read This !  —  What makes the gun industry so controversial, of course, is the ever-shifting debate about how to reconcile gun rights and public safety.  Each year in this country, more than 31,000 people are killed by firearms,  the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate — roughly 85 people per day. The US has one of the highest rates of civilian gun ownership and one of the highest rates of firearm-related deaths per capita across developed countries around the world. 

The NRA is not the NRA of the members, those folks people are cash cows for the good old boys. The NRA is not the NRA of the  Gun owners, Sportsmen, Competitors, Collectors nor Enthusiasts, It is nothing but a lobbyist for the gun manufacturers.  And your dues and membership money, promotional choices and programming will not go where they could do some good.  It is not the NRA I joined decades ago, it went political because there is tons of money in political.When the truth gets exposed eighteen members of their Board bilked the member ship of as much as 65 million dollars… Keep laughing, thats where your money went to bribe the gun lobby and themselves living like kings. If you really want to look stupid…buy a bigger mirror…

  • Again the NRA is the NRA of the gun manufacturers, it is a lobbyist organization… supposed charitable enterprise.  FRAUD GANG, YOUR MONEY GOES TO THEIR BOARD MEMBERS AND DEALS JUST LIKE FAKE PASTORS - NOT A CHARITY  — You are nothing but a cash cow for their use and the downfall is that they are not a charity and swindled millions and we mean millions of dollars and your membership dues will not be used for the purpose of promoting anything other than a few so-so has-been programs, but mainly used for bribes to Congressmen,  and a glorious well-stocked life as long as the gun manufacturers will be protected from government regulation… 

  • Failure for an elected official to support the NRA will result in the NRA supporting the opposition when it’s time for re-election.  There is more, lots more and it’s all surfacing…

  • For the uninformed and ignorant, the NRA gets tens of millions of dollars from gun manufacturers, through a variety of channels, not just checks but advertising in NRA publications and special promotions the manufacturers run. For instance, every time someone buys a Ruger, the company donates $2 to the NRA. Buy one from Taurus, and they’ll pay for a year’s membership in the NRA.

  • What’s more, a growing body of research suggests that simply owning a gun is correlated with an increased likelihood that you’ll be a victim of violence. A study published in 2014 in the Annals of Internal Medicine found that people who live in homes with firearms are over three times as likely to die from suicide and two times as likely to be a victim of homicide as those who don’t have access to firearms. 

  • A former pro football player who serves on the National Rifle Association board was paid $400,000 by the group in recent years for public outreach and firearms training.   Another board member, a writer in New Mexico, collected more than $28,000 for articles in NRA publications.   Yet another board member sold ammunition from his private company to the NRA for an undisclosed sum.

  • The NRA, which has been rocked by allegations of exorbitant spending by top executives, also directed money in recent years that went to board members — the very people tasked with overseeing the organization’s finances.  In all, 18 members of the NRA’s 76-member board, who are not paid as directors, collected money from the group during the past three years, according to tax filings, state charitable reports and NRA correspondence reviewed by The Washington Post.

  • The payments received by about one-quarter of board members, the extent of which has not previously been reported, deepen questions about the rigor of the board’s oversight as it steered the country’s largest and most powerful gun rights group, according to tax experts and some longtime members.  Million upon millions of dollars.


   Where Is The NRA I Knew?  —  I was a life member of the NRA, and quit when they became political hacks, liars, story tellers and bribery became their main calling with your dues being given to politicians.  Years ago, I forget exactly, maybe mid-late 80’s at an NRA rally in Tampa,  I was a member and believer in the NRA and asked to and addressed with several other speakers, the mostly adult crowd at the Tampa police Range, now closed, some in semi military uniforms with cute children in matching camos and cowboy boots.  This is the South, and dress for success has some strange codes. 

The occasion was representative of the paranoia and fear when some restrictions on firearms (big magazines and auto firearms) were being discussed in Congress.  The crowd was pretty well charged up.  My turn to speak and I defended our rights under the second amendment and basic Republican Principles, I promoted the NRA,  and then:

  • I asked them to raise their hands and show their membership card  if they supported the NRA, hands went up. 
  • I  asked them to hold up their drivers license’s, most raised their hands.
  • I asked them if they had a credit card, yes, hands went up about half.
  • Then I asked them to hold up their Voter Registration cards… and it was pathetic.  

  

Whom Do You Blame? They Are Crooks  — Now we learn the NRA has secretly mishandled sixty-five million dollars of your dues, never went to where they told you disguised in covert felt to their members only of the board,  that went to the Eighteen Board Members of the Club which is fraud since the NRA declares as a charity.  They themselves as a charity are limited to the money not used as a charity.
$5,900,000  Given to Republicans in 2016 election cycle,   $106,000 given to Democrats in 2016 election cycle. Meanwhile T-RUMP and his campaign received 75 million for NRA sources. Some think this is the collusion contact for Russian money laundering as much of the money can’t be explained.

The Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan think tank that tracks money in politics, found that in 2016 more than half of the members of the House of Representatives — or 232 of the 435 — received money from gun rights groups like the National Rifle Association and Gun Owners of America. That money went disproportionately to Republicans. Only nine Democrats received campaign contributions from these groups.


It’s all About The Money and Who gets It  —  Its simple, the NRA lobbyist group exists because our Congressmen take their bribes.  And refuse to discuss gun control or create false narratives claiming it is not the time.  Blaming it on anything they can other than truth, mental health, climate change, the Russian hoax, ingrown toenails, and bone spurs, alone kept these celebrity hair-do’s out of the military and many of them are into pubic service instead of public service.

Our Coward Commander, Captain Bone Spurs who unarmed,  claimed he was going to run into the school to save the children. Maybe Wayne La Pierre another draft dodger with fake medicals would go with him… 

TRUTH  -  More Donald lies, he never served, he is nothing but a corrupt  Draft Dodger, the proof is posted herein under people of privilege who let others die…  these are the ones that gun control is decided by…I stand by it…  The part that surprises me and stuns me at the same time is how many we think are great people of position and power were nothing but liars and draft dodgers.   

The President of the United States, our liar-in-chief who defends his brainless GOP base following.  As I once said, It takes a schmuck to lead schmucks.  His military academy friends thought he had shiniest shoes in the brigade.  His awards at military school were in sports and he received the gold cup in bowling.


New York Charges Brought Forth

The Attorney General of New York is the chief legal officer of the US State, New York and head of the Department of Law of the state government.The office has been in existence in some form since 1626, under the Dutch colonial government of New York.  Democrat Letitia James currently serves as Attorney General, in office since January 1, 2019.


We Follow The Money Sidebar   —  

  • In 2015, NRA contributions totaled $95 million. In that year…
  • Wayne LaPierre received a $3.7 million deferred compensation distribution from his “ Employee funded deferred compensation plan”,  which was required by federal law, and according to the NRA raised his total annual compensation to $5,110,985.
  • In 2016 the NRA raised a record $366 million and spent $412 million for political activities.
  • All told, the AG James accused the NRA leaders of wasteful, unchecked spending that helped lead the organization to turn a $27.8 million surplus in 2015 to a $36.3 million net deficit in 2018.
  • At a Manhattan news conference, James said the NRA has operated as “  breeding ground for greed, abuse and brazen illegality."
  • “Today we send a strong and loud message: No one is above the law, not even the NRA, one of the most powerful organizations in this country,” she said.
  • Among the allegations laid out in the suit:

LaPierre, NRA’s chief executive and executive vice president since 1991, and his family are accused of traveling to the Bahamas on a private charter at least eight times over three years, costing the NRA $500,000. 

  • On some of those trips, an NRA vendor allowed him to use a 107-foot yacht with four staterooms and two jet skis, which he never disclosed to the NRA. LaPierre and his wife also went on an all-expenses paid African safari covered by an NRA vendor, according to the suit.
  • LaPierre is also accused of spending more than $3.6 million in NRA funds on black car services and travel consultants in just the last two years, as well as teeing up a contract that guarantees him lifetime compensation, worth an estimated $17 million.
  • Former treasurer and CFO Wilson "Woody" Phillips is alleged to have set up a $1.8 million consulting deal for himself just before his retirement, as well as overseeing an arrangement that saw Ackerman McQueen, an advertising and PR firm, pay for NRA leaders' entertainment and travel costs before billing the organization. That arrangement is subject of a separate legal dispute.
  • Also named in the lawsuit are former NRA Chief of Staff Joshua Powell and current Corporate Secretary and General Counsel John Frazer.


 Founding Fathers  —  The NRA, founded in 1871 to promote gun safety and training, relies heavily on its 5 million members for dues. Some supporters are rebelling publicly and questioning its leadership.  About time they woke up

“I will be the first person to get in your face about defending the Second Amendment, but I will not defend corruption and cronyism and fearmongering,” said Vanessa Ross, a Philadelphia-area bakery owner and lifetime NRA member who previously worked at the Virginia headquarters managing a program for disabled shooters.

Among the revelations that have burst into public view: CEO Wayne LaPierre racked up hundreds of thousands of dollars in charges at a Beverly Hills clothing boutique and on foreign travel, invoices show. Oliver North, forced out as president after trying to oust LaPierre, was set to collect millions of dollars in a deal with the NRA’s now-estranged public relations agency, Ackerman McQueen, according to LaPierre.  And the NRA’s outside attorney reaped “extraordinary” legal fees that totaled millions of dollars in the past year, according to North.

The dueling allegations, coupled with multimillion-dollar shortfalls in recent years and an ongoing investigation by the New York attorney general, threaten the potency of the NRA, long a political juggernaut and a close ally of President Trump.

The NRA said its finances are healthy and that the allegations of misspending are unfounded. In a statement last month, a dozen board members said they have “ full confidence in the NRA’s accounting practices and commitment to good governance.” LaPierre declined to comment.  If they only knew whats about to happen…


  Overpaid Bribery and Collusion  —  The gun rights organization’s board includes firearms industry executives, conservative leaders, gun enthusiasts, and a handful of sports and entertainment celebrities. Among its members, whose names are not listed on the NRA website, are former Republican congressman Bob Barr of Georgia, basketball star Karl Malone and Joe Allbaugh, who served as the director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency in the George W. Bush administration. (The three are not among the directors the NRA reported paying.)

After learning about the money his fellow board members received, Malone said he was concerned. “If these allegations are correct and 18 board members received pay, you’re damn right I am,” he said. “If it’s correct, the members who pay their dues should be damn concerned, too.”

The NRA does not require board members to donate or raise funds for the group, as many nonprofit organizations do. They do not have term limits.


  They Are Not A Non Profit - More Commonly Known As A Scam  —  State and federal laws allow members of nonprofit boards to do business with their organizations under certain guidelines. The Internal Revenue Service can impose penalties if top officials and their families receive economic benefits that exceed fair market value.   Tax experts said the numerous payments to certain NRA directors create potential conflicts of interest that could cloud the board’s independent monitoring of the organization’s finances.

“In 25 years of working in this field, I have never seen a pattern like this,” said Douglas Varley, a Washington attorney at Caplin & Drysdale who specializes in tax-exempt organizations and reviewed the NRA’s federal and state filings from 2016 through 2018 for The Washington Post. “The volume of transactions with insiders and affiliates of insiders is really astonishing.”

Carley said he did not see any obvious or apparent violations of the law, and noted that the NRA, for the most part, appeared to have properly disclosed the payments.   “ But the pattern raises a threshold question of who the organization is serving,” he said. “Is it being run for the benefit of the gun owners in the country and the public? Or is it being run as a business generating enterprise for officers and employees of the organization?”

NRA spokesman Andrew Arulanandam said that the number of financial relationships between directors and the NRA is “small,” considering the size of the board and the organization.  (LIE)  He called the gun rights movement “a close-knit community comprised of partners and vendors who understand the issues and are defenders of the Second Amendment.” ( Another LIE)   Because gun-control groups have pressured companies into not doing business with the NRA, Arulanandam said, “the pool becomes smaller. Therefore, connections between employees or board members and partners are not unusual.”

William Brewer, an outside attorney for the NRA, said business arrangements with directors are approved “ where appropriate” by the board’s audit committee.  ( LIE) All insiders, Hitler had an audit board, Himmler, Goring, Eichmann and Josef Mengele.

“Naturally, there are occasions where the NRA engages vendors who have a connection to NRA executives, employees or board members — but only when such an association works in the best interest of the organization and its members,” he said.   Like all the time were occasions, no one else got a shot at it…( No Pun Intended) 

The NRA provided The Post with a copy of its conflict-of-interest policy, which states that approval by the audit committee is not required for minor transactions, reimbursement of expenses or “transactions and activities undertaken in the ordinary course of business by NRA staff.”

According to the policy, board members “ Owe a duty of loyalty to the NRA and must act in good faith and in the NRA’s best interests rather than in their own interests or the interests of another entity or person.”   Just like the Gestapo…

Board members who spoke to The Post defended their ability to serve as fiscal watchdogs while also collecting fees. 

Former president David Keene, who has been paid $112,000 by the group for public speaking and consulting since 2017, said he has “never hesitated to exercise the oversight required of a board member and would gladly give up any compensation if I thought for a minute it was compromising my judgment or responsibility.” “NRA board members as a group tend to be both forthright and bullheaded, so I cannot imagine any of them would let a few dollars affect their judgment,” he added.  Are you shitting me? 


  Financial ‘Crisis’ Allegations  —  In late April, the NRA’s annual meeting was getting underway in Indianapolis when members of the board received an alarming letter from LaPierre, who has run the gun lobby for decades.  In it, he wrote that Oliver North had warned that the group’s longtime public relations firm, Ackerman McQueen, was going to release information alleging “a devastating account of our financial status.” LaPierre said North indicated that the missive would not be sent if LaPierre resigned. 

The NRA chief hinted that North was compromised — conflicted between his duties to the board and his personal financial interests, noting that the retired Marine Corps lieutenant colonel had signed a contract with Ackerman to host an NRA documentary series for “ Millions of dollars annually.”

“I believe our Board and devoted members will see this for what it is: a threat meant to intimidate and divide us,” LaPierre concluded.  The next day, North was forced to resign. But in a parting letter, he warned that the organization’s finances were in “clear crisis.”    

The board sided with LaPierre, reelecting him unanimously, according to NRA officials. Sure he signs their checks….   “We have full confidence in Wayne LaPierre and the work he’s doing in support of the NRA and its members,” said Carolyn D. Meadows, who replaced North as president.   Attorneys for North declined to comment.

NRA reelects LaPierre as CEO, T-RUMP blames group’s woes on New York state, NY state doesn’t like T-RUMP either and he is in more hot water than the NRA.   Since then, the NRA has faced a steady drip of allegations about improper spending.

Letters from Ackerman’s chief financial officer to LaPierre, first reported by the Wall Street Journal and obtained by The Post, detailed large expenses billed by LaPierre, including nearly $275,000 in personal charges at a Beverly Hills men’s store and more than $253,000 in luxury travel to locations such as Italy, Budapest and the Bahamas. Bills also show $13,800 to rent an apartment for a summer intern.

In another letter, North warned top officials that huge fees charged by the Brewer law firm — which he said appeared to total $24 million in the previous 13 months — were “draining NRA cash at mind-boggling speed.” Brewer is the son-in-law of Angus McQueen, the CEO of the NRA’s longtime ad firm.

In the wake of the revelations, Retired Army Lt. Col. Allen West, a former Republican congressman from Florida and two-term NRA board member, called for LaPierre to resign, describing “a cabal of cronyism.” 

NRA officials said that LaPierre’s wardrobe allowance began 15 years ago and that he was urged by Ackerman to make the purchases for his public appearances, a practice that they said has since been discontinued. They said his travel was necessary for fundraising. The apartment was secured for a three-month summer internship when university housing typically used was unavailable, the NRA said. 

NRA officials also said that North’s memo describing the legal fees paid to the Brewer firm was “inaccurate.”
“It reflects a misinformed view of the firm, its billings, and its advocacy for the NRA,” said Charles L. Cotton, chairman of the NRA’s audit committee. “The board supports the work the firm is doing.” Brewer did not respond to a request for comment on his fees.

The swirl of allegations is being driven by the NRA’s increasingly acrimonious split from Ackerman, an Oklahoma-based firm that, with affiliated companies, received about $40 million from the nonprofit group in 2017, according to tax filings. Ackerman has produced provocative ads and television shows that increasingly marked a departure from the NRA’s traditional focus on gun rights. 

As turmoil rocks NRA meeting, attendees back a group under pressure from all sides, the gun lobby and the PR agency have sued each other in recent months, accusing one another of improper billing and deceit.

In a statement, Ackerman said it “followed the explicit directions” of NRA officials. The company said the NRA conducted an audit of its payments nearly every year and can justify all of its billings. “They could challenge any invoice, but they did not,” the company said.  The NRA has accused Ackerman of concealing records, which the firm denies, and breaching confidentiality by leaking information.

The feud comes amid an investigation by New York Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat, into the tax-exempt status of the organization, which is chartered in New York. As part of the probe, her office has issued subpoenas to the NRA, as well as orders to NRA entities and vendors to preserve records, according to people familiar with the investigation.

Brewer, the NRA’s outside attorney, said the group complies with all regulations and is cooperating with the inquiry. “The NRA is prepared for this, and has full confidence in its accounting practices and commitment to good governance,” he said.   Amid the turmoil, much of the NRA board has remained silent — or defended LaPierre’s spending. 

“This is stale news — being recycled by those with personal agendas. In any event, the entire board is fully aware of these issues,” Meadows said in a statement.   The organization has not hired an outside firm to conduct an investigation into the allegations of misspending, a measure that legal experts note is often taken by nonprofit boards in such situations. Brewer said NRA practices are already under “constant review” by top officials and the board.

Instead, NRA leaders claim gun-control advocates are ginning up the controversies to sabotage the organization. “Our financial house is in order — we aren’t going away,” read a May 22 letter to members  signed by Meadows and 11 other board members, many of them past presidents. 

But some longtime NRA members are losing faith in the leadership — and considering walking away from the organization.“You have these facts coming to light, what to most NRA members seem very unreasonable amounts spent on luxuries and conveniences,” said NRA member and firearms trainer Robert Pincus of Florida.

“And at the same time you have the NRA cold-calling and fundraising, claiming they are going to go bankrupt if they don’t get money to fight New York state,” Pincus said. “Then you have the [new] president saying they are in great financial shape, all the financial problems of the past have been fixed. Those three messages don’t all go together.”


  ‘Nothing Nefarious’  ( Lawyer Terms - Lies Are Nefarious) 

Federal and state filings show that the NRA has turned to its board members for a variety of paid services in the past three years — including to bring in new members.  Attorneys who specialize in nonprofit organizations said it is unusual for board members to be paid membership commissions for recruitment. 

“Most groups lean on board members to give money, not for board members to get money,” said New York lawyer Daniel Kurtz. “I think the contributing public would look at that with a dim eye.”  Among those paid such commissions was board member Owen Mills, who runs Gunsite Academy, an Arizona firearms training facility, which received about $11,000 in 2016 and 2017.

Mills defended the financial ties between board members and the NRA, saying they should be able to do business with the group as long as their prices are competitive.  “There’s nothing nefarious about it,” Mills said. “The NRA buys a lot of stuff. And so it wouldn’t be unusual to do business with your board members, and all of that is open to the public process.” 

Since 2016, large sums have flowed to board members for consulting, public filings show. NRA officials provided additional details about the specifics of some of the work they did.  Lance Olson, a former police officer from Iowa, received a total of $255,000 for outreach to gun collectors and fundraising, and Dave Butz, a former NFL player, received $400,000 for public outreach and firearms training, according to the NRA. 

Olson did not respond to requests for comment. Butz, who was not reelected to the board in April, declined to comment.

A firm run by White House communications aide Mercedes Schlapp, who resigned from the board when she joined the administration in 2017, received a total of $85,000 in 2016 and 2017 for media strategy consulting.  She did not respond to requests for comment. Schlapp’s ability to represent the organization in Spanish-language media “made her firm highly qualified,” the NRA said. 

Longtime director and former NRA president Marion Hammer received at least $610,000 in the past three years for consulting services and legislative lobbying in Florida. Hammer declined to comment. In a statement, the group called her a “tireless supporter of the NRA’s fight to protect the Second Amendment.”

Director Bart Skelton, a writer in New Mexico, received at least $28,750 over three years to produce articles for NRA publications and $6,550 in compensation in 2017. He did not respond to requests for comment.   NRA director and rock performer Ted Nugent’s company received $50,000 for appearances at the 2016 NRA convention, while director and country music singer Craig Morgan’s company got $23,500 for musical performances. 


  No One Responded To Requests for Comment… No one ever will…
In other cases, the NRA paid businesses run by members of its board.  The NRA Foundation, the group’s charitable arm, bought nearly $3.1 million in ammunition and other supplies in 2017 from Crow Shooting Supply, a business controlled by director and past president Pete Brownell.   NRA officials and Browned say the group began purchasing supplies from Crow before Browned took over the company in 2011.  LIES  However, the first time the foundation disclosed the contract in tax filings was in 2017, as the Wall Street Journal first reported

NRA officials said the foundation made the disclosure in 2017 “in an effort to provide greater visibility regarding the Foundation’s mission and activities.”   A spokesman for Brownell, who announced last week that he was stepping down from the board to focus on his business, said the contract was vetted by the audit committee.   Rats desert the ship….

“Crow is one of the only wholesalers in the country who can meet the programs’ volume and shipping needs,” spokesman Ryan Repp said. “Pete takes his ethical obligations seriously,” adding that Brownell abstained from voting on issues that directly affected his business.

The amount of money collected by one board member remains unknown because she was paid by Ackerman, the NRA’s marketing agency. Julie Golob, a gun activist in Kansas City, Mo., hosts and consults for NRA video programming produced by the firm, according to internal documents.    She declined to comment on how much she is paid or on her dual roles as NRA director and subcontractor. The NRA has said the arrangement was approved by the audit committee and that Golob does not participate in discussions related to Ackerman.

In addition to the 18 board members paid in recent years, the NRA also reported paying an undisclosed amount to a son of board member James Porter, a former president of the group. The son, who works for the Bradley law firm, has been involved in extensive litigation involving guns, according to his biography. Neither father nor son responded to requests for comment. 

Another director, Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska), received thousands of dollars in donations from the NRA’s political arm to his campaign. Young did not respond to a request for comment. 


  Challenges On Many Fronts
Longtime NRA members said they are worried that allegations of insider dealing and big spending at the NRA could create the appearance of impropriety.

“The NRA cannot afford to give fodder to the public and to the media that we are anything but above board,” said Tiffany Johnson, a firearms instructor in Memphis and lifetime member. “We can’t give anybody any reason to even intimate that we have impermissible conflicts of interest, that there is self-dealing.”

Compounding the situation are signs that the NRA’s finances are under strain.  Public filings show that the gun rights group spent $31,000,000 dollars more than any other outside group — had a more than $17 million shortfall in 2017, the most recent tax filing available. That year, it collected nearly $312 million in revenue.

 

  The NRA Spent $31,000,000 To Help Elect T-Rump During 2016 Campaign 

NRA officials said the organization is “on budget” this year and “meeting all banking and supplier obligations.”  But it is under intensifying scrutiny in Congress, where Democrats on the Senate Finance Committee have been examining the group’s ties to Russia. That inquiry has expanded to include the allegations of self-dealing. 

Meanwhile, the turmoil at the NRA has benefited some other gun rights organizations, which said they have seen an uptick in memberships and contributions.

“In recent months we have seen an over 20 percent increase in support,” said Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Second Amendment Foundation and chair of its sister organization, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. He said donors are giving in response to “reports of lavish spending” at the NRA and the support for gun control among Democratic presidential contenders.   NRA directors say the current fracas has been overblown and will not inflict long-term damage.   
“We are the most influential body representing firearms owners in the world,” said Mills, the director from Arizona, “and we will survive this little speed bump and come out all the stronger and remain the guardian of civil rights.”   In a statement, LaPierre called the lawsuit an “ constitutional, premeditated attack aiming to dismantle and destroy the NRA."

Against whom, imaginary people or people sick of the killings and mass murders… 



5/2/2021   aljacobsladder.com