Author Tim Mak Hits The Nail On The Head

His book was excellent, and this article is on a par with that.

“If you talk to people who have known him [Wayne LaPierre] for decades, even they describe him as this deeply anxious, weak-willed, almost cowardly person who easily gets bowled over by people around him,” Mak tells KCRW. “People in power in the NRA have realized that if you yell at him loud enough, or you berate him long enough, eventually he’s going to say yes to millions of dollars in contracts for preferred NRA vendors with sweetheart deals or golden parachutes for senior NRA staffers and executives who lead the organization but get paid handsomely to do nothing at all.” 

“Wayne LaPierre couldn’t really make any decisions without conferring with Angus McQueen first, as if Wayne LaPierre was the one who was doing the job, and Angus McQueen was the client.”

“Throughout the years, Mak says that Ackerman McQueen became a facilitator of the NRA’s corruption. Top officials at the gun organization, including Susan LaPierre, billed thousands of dollars on Ackerman McQueen credit cards, and then the consulting agency billed the NRA back in nondescript ways. “

Regarding LaPierre: “He’s asked repeatedly why this kind of spending occurred. Why did this misconduct occur? And often, he says he didn’t know about it. He didn’t see the bills. He didn’t ask about the bills. And his defense has always been one of ignorance, that he wasn’t looped in while he was the CEO of the organization. And it seemed that he made a deliberate statement by not asking, by not trying to figure it out.”

That struck us, listing to the bankruptcy trial. When LaPierre talked of his performance, it was all in terms of fundraising, meaning being the figurehead at fundraisers (people give to the NRA, the person who appears and speaks is just a symbol). He testified that in one recent year he was out of town 48 weeks or weekends, meaning that he was not in Fairfax serving as CEO to a complex, 4-5million member, $350 million a year, operation. When directors testified that his services were important, it was all about his going to fundraisers and returning with checks, not about his being a good leader or skilled manager or idea man, or running a competent shop in Fairfax.

The problem is that this became a reflex for him, and for the board. “We see nuzzing, we know nuzzling” might have worked back in 2019, but after three years of publicized corruption (and every director having been mailed a free copy of Tim Mak’s book), the only “ignorance” NRA’s leadership can plead is the type that closes its eyes, plugs its ears, and hums to hide the sound. Not “I saw nothing,” but rather “I refuse to see anything.” The membership deserves better.

It’s sad to reflect on NRA’s past leadership. Director and president Joe Foss, who earned the Congressional Medal of Honor at Guadalcanal. President and EVP Harlon Carter, who built the modern NRA. Neal Knox, his sometimes rival and sometimes ally, who built modern ILA. Col. Rex Applegate, who wrote the book (literally) on hand-to-hand, and in his 70s demolished two street thugs with his walking stick. All replaced by sheep willing to let the organization sink so long as they don’t get browbeaten or pushed out of the flock.

2 thoughts on “Author Tim Mak Hits The Nail On The Head

  1. I visited with a quite elderly BOD in the elevator. I asked, “how long have you been a director”? He said, ‘Gosh I can’t remember” that says a lot!

    Like

  2. According to the linked article, Mak had a pre-concieved notion that NRA was a powerful political lobbying organization. That’s part of NRA’s problem. In today’s political environment, including the prevalence of social media, old-style political advocacy of the type on which NRA continues to rely is darn near worthless, if not counterproductive. Anti-freedom (i.e., “anti-gun”) politicians wear NRA criticism as a merit badge. To be a legislator “targeted” by the NRA is promoted as a positive. Anti-freedom legislators do not “fear” the NRA.

    Despite all the self-inflicted damage to NRA’s reputation and its efficacy as an organization representing its membership, NRA still has a huge amount of goodwill among its members, who simply want to be part of group that advocates and educates for lawful, constitutionally protected ownership of firearms.

    Liked by 1 person

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