Crisis Actors

We already knew the National Rifle Association laundered Russian money and spent $30 million to elect the corrupt and incompetent Trump and millions more to stock Congress with spineless toadies like Marco Rubio. This ensures that a dwindling cohort of gun-humping nutbags prevail in policy decisions over the will of the American people.

Now there’s proof that the gun manufacturers’ lobbying organization actively works with crackpots to harass and defame survivors of the inevitable massacres that occur as a result of those policies. Via The Post:

In the week after a gunman opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., killing 17 students and staff members and renewing calls for gun control, the National Rifle Association fell silent.

But the day after the Feb. 14, 2018, shooting, an NRA training coordinator based at the group’s headquarters in Fairfax, Va., sprang into action behind the scenes. He sought information countering the official version of the grisly, and familiar, events, which involved a lone gunman and a legally purchased firearm.

For support, he turned to Wolfgang Halbig, a conspiracy theorist intent on proving that the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, which left 26 students and staff members dead in Newtown, Conn., was a hoax.

“You have included me with a lot of Information since the Sandy Hook Incident and I do appreciate it very much,” the NRA coordinator, Mark Richardson, wrote on Feb. 15, 2018, according to emails published by HuffPost on Wednesday. “Concerning what happened in Florida yesterday, I have been asking the question and no one else seems to be asking it.”

He pushed the deluded idea that the gunman, a former student at the school, had not acted alone, posing questions about how he had gained entry and where he had kept his equipment…

In a sane country, it past misdeeds would have already made the NRA more toxic than a Chernobyl urinal cake, and no politician would dare accept a dime from it for fear of massive constituent backlash. In this country, not only do Republicans at every level continue to eagerly accept millions from this vile propaganda outfit, the current Republican president spoke at its convention last year, and he and his VP invited one of the blood-gargling sociopaths who lead the NRA to the White House immediately after the Parkland massacre to weigh in on policy, if not write drafts of legislation outright.

I understand the House Democrats are busy sifting through the mountainous evidence of the Trump administration’s unprecedented corruption. But I do hope they find the time to investigate and expose the NRA’s financial malfeasance and psychotic attempts to foment hatred toward victims in its fanatical cult following. Wiping that wretched hive of scum and villainy from the political landscape would not only strike a blow for good governance, it would be a favor to humanity.

57 replies
  1. 1
    rikyrah says:

    They are Demons…plain and simple.

  2. 2
    rikyrah says:

    This is who they are:

    .@DOIDepSec David Bernhardt is a big part of the Trump administration #CultureOfCorruption. His #DirtyBudget slashes @Interior programs that protect our environment & our way of life. We can afford tax cuts for the rich but not conservation? #StopBernhardt https://t.co/KjADwLYr17

    — Raul M. Grijalva (@RepRaulGrijalva) March 28, 2019

  3. 3
    H.E.Wolf says:

    Amen, Betty.

    Amen.

  4. 4
    Spanky says:

    more toxic than a Chernobyl urinal cake

    Da hell? I don’t know where these spring from, BC, but I sure do think they’re awesome (and will be repeated).

  5. 5
    geg6 says:

    I may have more contempt for the NRA and its disciples than anyone or anything in the entire country. And since I have a lot of contempt for a lot of people and organizations in this country, that’s really saying something.

    Plus, we own guns. Just a couple small caliber handguns and a couple of hunting rifles, though. But we truly despise the NRA. We would happily give up those guns if that’s what it took to stop gun deaths in this country.

  6. 6
    MomSense says:

    Chernobyl urinal cake is the new name for my punk band.

  7. 7
    Mike in NC says:

    Years ago at one of the IT companies in NoVA, a programmer I worked with took a job at NRA HQ. I fantasized briefly about taking a job like that just to destroy their databases and then quit before they knew what happened.

  8. 8
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @geg6: Right there with you. I turned down a free lifetime NRA membership 35 years ago. I’ve had a ringside seat to how the NRA radicalized many gun owners.

  9. 9
    MomSense says:

    @geg6:

    It’s a death cult. I loathe the NRA and all their enablers.

  10. 10
    Nicole says:

    Years back, I dated a guy who bragged about being an NRA member. Reconnected socially 20 years later and he’s just as much a NRA gun humper now as he was then. The weird thing is, I don’t think he actually owns a firearm. I think he just wants the cache of being an NRA member. It’s a cult, the NRA.

    (I can’t ask him if he does own a gun because I unfriended him on social media last year. Life is too short for small talk with right wingers.)

  11. 11
    narya says:

    This remains one of the best pieces I’ve ever read on the NRA.

  12. 12
    Karen says:

    Now there’s proof that the gun manufacturers’ lobbying organization actively works with crackpots to harass and defame survivors of the inevitable massacres that occur as a result of those policies.

    It makes my conspiracy theory that NRA is paying these crackpots to shoot and kill people and drive up sales by terrified people not so crazy.

  13. 13
    rikyrah says:

    And there you have it, folks! This is why republicans want Adam Schiff off the Intel committee. Not gonna happen bitttttches.

    Adam Schiff is one of only four Democrats who the White House cannot deny access to any classified information.

    — Susan Hennessey (@Susan_Hennessey) March 28, 2019

  14. 14
    trollhattan says:

    @geg6:
    They’re ahead of our Nazis on my list because of the sheer volume of evil resulting from their work. Not that a Venn diagram of the two wouldn’t show the NRA circle 100% enveloping the Nazis.

  15. 15
    trollhattan says:

    @Nicole:

    the cache of being an NRA member.

    That should be grounds for a 72-hour psych hold. It’s like wanting pneumonia for the fever, because you miss hot weather.

  16. 16
    trollhattan says:

    @rikyrah:
    Schiff and Nancy Smash could be my two favorite Californians. Do not trifle with Nancy and Adam!

  17. 17
    Drunkenhausfrau says:

    I hope the victims’ families sue the hell out of them.

  18. 18
    chris says:

    OT: Two questions.
    1) The site’s borked, right? Looks like a stripped-down version from 2000. I keep waiting for the modem to burble.
    2) Speaking of modems, where the hell is Baud?

  19. 19
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @trollhattan:
    Liberals should take note of his “I got no fucks to give for you corrupt assholes and Barr’s lying memo”. He has seen far more evidence than we have.

  20. 20
    RedDirtGirl says:

    NRA/GOP: No Lives Matter
    NRA/GOP: Children Should Be Slain And Not Heard

  21. 21
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @chris: not on this (mobile) end.

  22. 22
    RedDirtGirl says:

    @MomSense: I’m hearing the British pronunciation: Ur-Eye-Nal, for some reason.

  23. 23
    MattF says:

    Obama was golden for the NRA– Trump not so much, somewhat counter-intuitively. I expect that if Dems win big next year, the NRA will be back in business in a big way.

  24. 24
    waspuppet says:

    As much of a Republican-hater as I am, in January 2017 if you’d told me the entire GOP was funded by Russian mob money laundered by the NRA, I would’ve said “Well, that’s a bit of a stretch.” Now I don’t see any other explanation.

  25. 25
    Immanentize says:

    @chris: Baud is on walkabout for a while. He said he would be back in a few.

  26. 26
    Eunicecycle says:

    @Mike in NC: I mentored a young woman in my field who went on to work for the NRA. To say I was disappointed is an understatement. And she was awesome.

  27. 27
    chris says:

    @A Ghost To Most: From my phone, you’re right. Anyone else having desktop/ Chrome issues?

  28. 28
    tobie says:

    Cheryl posted a diary last weekend about what Mueller was and was not charged with investigating according to his initial appointment letter. The brief he was given in that letter was very broad. What I didn’t know was that Rosenstein issued a second letter, most of which is redacted, in which he details what Mueller’s real charge is. The justification given is that the letter for public consumption couldn’t give any hints about any investigations. How could I not have noticed this? These Federalist Society fucks have used the extraordinary authority given the executive branch to hide just about everything from the American people.

  29. 29
    chris says:

    @Immanentize: Thanks. Guess I missed that while I was on walkabout

  30. 30
    Wayne Marks says:

    I agree with every word you said and, as usual, that was a damn good piece of writing. Well done.

  31. 31
    Jeffro says:

    @MomSense:

    Chernobyl urinal cake is the new name for my punk band.

    Dang it! I was *this * close to saying that!!

    Guess I will have to settle for a knock-off…”Hanford Toilet Brush” or something…it just doesn’t have the same cachet, though…

  32. 32
    mad citizen says:

    @narya: Awesome link, thank you.

  33. 33
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @mad citizen: TBOGG usually is.

  34. 34
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    The National Russian Association is a terrorist organization.

    Deal with them like Al Qaeda. Send in SEAL Team Six.

    Wipe them out. All of them.

  35. 35
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Jeffro: “The Hanford Wastenaughts.”

  36. 36
    germy says:

    Australian Al Jazeera reporter Rodger Muller infiltrated a meeting between the US National Rifle Association and Australia’s far-right/white nationalist party One Nation, where the NRA gave party bosses advice on how to reverse Australia’s tough anti-automatic/semi-automatic gun laws (passed after a 1996 mass shooting that killed 35 people) and what to do to deflect public calls for gun control when the next mass shooting happens.

    In the secret recording, two One Nation officials — Chief of Staff James Ashby and Queensland party boss Steve Dickson — seek up to $20 million from the NRA’s US supporters to fund their gun lobbying in Australia.

    NRA PR team members Lars Dalseide and Catherine Mortensen gave the One Nation official extensive advice on managing crisis communications following mass shootings, advising them to “say nothing,” and to plant stories that smear gun-control advocates by “shaming” them with statements like “how dare you use their deaths to push that forward. How dare you stand on the graves of those children to put forward your political agenda?”

    https://boingboing.net/2019/03/28/transparent-shaming.html

  37. 37
    A Ghost To Most says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Hanford Half-Lifes.

  38. 38
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    Y’know how we always try to question gun owners on what good their AR-15s would do against the modern US military if the government ever decided to go full on totalitarian? Well, I saw an answer the other day:

    “Ever heard of Vietnam?”

    I shit you not, that was the answer. Nevermind that Flying Death Robots (modern drones) didn’t exist then.

    Also, they poo pooed the argument as “whaah, I guess we’ll just give up now”. Idiots.

  39. 39
    Brachiator says:

    In a sane country, it past misdeeds would have already made the NRA more toxic than a Chernobyl urinal cake

    Yep. Don’t have much more to add here. The sad thing is that the idiotic belief that God Almighty gave Moses the Bill of Rights and double underlined the Second Amendment give NRA weasels extra cover. This is going to be a long fight.

  40. 40
    gene108 says:

    The gun lobby, for as long as I can remember, has based its actions on the “slippery slope” theory. Give an inch on gun laws and the “gun grabbers” will launch outright gun confiscation. Allow expanded background checks after Sandy Hook? End result will be outright gun confiscation.

    They and their gun owning supporters aren’t rational. I am not sure they are aware of this. They’ve created an imaginary villain “the slippery slope” that they must always fight.

    On the other side are the 2/3’s of non-gun owning households, who are sick of their shit, and are starting to organize and push back. I think the gun lobby, by being so fucking nuts, is going to create a self-fulfilling prophecy. They are so irrational and obstinate and unwilling to listen to any change to gun laws, which aren’t allowing everyone to own guns and take them wherever they want, with the least liability for the gun owner, if he/she uses the gun in public, that the rest of will take all their guns away.

    I for one want to repeal the 2nd amendment and shutdown all gun manufacturing and gun ownership in the U.S. Fuck them. They had their chance to have a seat at the table and they blew it.

  41. 41
    Kay says:

    The NRA are gross hack lobbyists who are getting rich off rubes, but I wonder about the rank and file conspiracy theorists.

    I wonder if on some level they have to craft these elaborate fantasies because if the carnage is real and to a greater or lesser extent because of their gun fetish, they couldn’t bear it. In other words the fantasy exists to allow them to continue to be “good people”. These are people who invented a whole “good guy with a gun” theme- how they feel about themselves is hugely important in this. A roomful of slaughtered 1st graders is literally indefensible, so it cannot be true.

  42. 42
    trollhattan says:

    @germy:
    Whoa, Nelly. Does Australia have anything like a RICO law, because that could be a nice thing to deploy. Worth a reminder that the NZ mass murderer is a far-right radical Australian. They had to import their assassin.

  43. 43
    Ruviana says:

    @narya: Excellent piece. First thing I thought of.

  44. 44
    germy says:

    @trollhattan: Good question.

  45. 45
    Enhanced Voting Techniques says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷:

    “Ever heard of Vietnam?”

    “Yes, well we already know you idiots are turning traitor with the Russians. And how many of the VC survived that war? One can only image what a current day Sherman’s March to the Sea by the US army would be like…”

  46. 46

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷:

    Well, I saw an answer the other day:

    “Ever heard of Vietnam?”

    So they’re saying they’d take arms and money from the Russians the way the Vietnamese did?

  47. 47

    @Kay:

    I wonder if on some level they have to craft these elaborate fantasies because if the carnage is real and to a greater or lesser extent because of their gun fetish, they couldn’t bear it.

    I think there’s a bigger worry for them than that. They aren’t just in denial about their responsibility for gun massacres. They’re in denial that they or someone they know could go on exactly the same kind of rampage at any time, and their personal arsenals are making them less safe rather than more. They look at so many of those mass murderers and they see their own face, and that’s terrifying. I think that’s the real reason they’re so attracted to conspiracy theories about Sandy Hook and similar attacks; it lets them feel as if they aren’t ticking time bombs waiting to explode and kill their families.

  48. 48
    Betty Cracker says:

    @Roger Moore: People are in such denial about themselves and their own families that it boggles the mind. I have a relative with a troubled son who should not be living in a house with guns. I don’t think the kid is homicidal or suicidal, but who really knows? It’s just a bad idea to have guns in the house with children AT ALL, IMO, and especially with vulnerable kids.

    I’ve tried talking to my relative about it, but I’m easy to dismiss because he thinks I’m an anti-gun hysteric and a buttinski to boot for questioning his parenting. I’m sure Adam Lanza’s idiot mother never suspected her son would kill her and mow down classrooms of children and educators either. What the fuck can you say to such people? And the NRA and fellow gun nuts egg them on!

  49. 49
    Hungry Joe says:

    “Ever hear of Vietnam?” I love this almost (but not quite) too much for words. Yeah, take to the vast American jungles and skulk around like the Viet Cong for 20 years, fighting the Deep State. To be fair, there are some eucalyptus groves not far from my house, with a couple of taco joints within easy walking distance, so I guess they could hold out for a while.

  50. 50
    stinger says:

    Tell it, Betty. Both the OP and your comment at 1:32.

  51. 51
    Tenar Arha says:

    I dip into and out of listening to podcasts. A new-ish one that I’m considering adding to my many subscriptions is Chris Hayes show Why Is this Happening? The episode I tried yesterday was called Dying of Whiteness & was based on Jonathan Metzl’s recent research comparing state outcomes on how the policy preferences of white people is actually leading to their own higher death rates (ex suicide & accidents), particularly in states where conservatives have changed laws.

    ETA NB it’s not a very hopeful episode, bc the underlying cause of this is the beliefs that GOP propagandists have created in a entire demographic & over multiple generations.

    ETA2 sometimes it’s better to know how deeply set the problems are, to understand why nothing is going to change these minds & we have to work around them.

  52. 52
    Ben Cisco says:

    more toxic than a Chernobyl urinal cake,

    I heard this in Foghorn Leghorn’s voice. Is that wrong?

    I hope the NRA goes down hard for this and just for general principles.

  53. 53
    J R in WV says:

    @chris:

    where the hell is Baud?

    He told us a few days ago that he would be mostly off line for a little while. One msg since then, so probably away from connectivity for some travel reason. Or just having more fun with something else?

  54. 54
    Mike in Pasadena says:

    . . . blood-gargling sociopaths. . . .
    One for the record books. I love it.

  55. 55
    debbie says:

    Similarly, Alex Jones needs to be drawn and quartered in the public square. Nothing less.

  56. 56
    Adam Geffen says:

    @narya:

    I read that essay on the NRA when it was first posted. Then I lost track of it and have been looking for it for YEARS. THANK YOU!!

  57. 57
    Annamal says:

    One of the few genuinely amusing things post-christchurch has been watching transparently NRA sponsored twitter users attempting to “relate” to kiwi twitter users in order to try and forment some kind of local opposition to the up-coming legislative changes.

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12216973

    New Zealanders are constitutionally unable to let them pass by without ruthless mocking (the results of one hyper-bolic user threatening us with water and food shortages are particuarly entertaining).

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