The roiling turmoil at the National Rifle Association, claims the Z Man, can be blamed on one person:
Oliver North was recently pushed out of the National Rifle Association, after he tried to extort the long serving leader Wayne LaPierre. Oliver North is, of course, a notorious right-wing grifter, who has been hustling gullible white people for going on four decades. His public career started when he put on his old uniform to perform in front of Congress during the Iran-Contra hearings. That was in the 1980s. Since then, he has been waving around his service and the American flag as part of his act.
Peddling shabby patriotism to middle-class white people seems harmless, but inevitably it leads the patriotic into supporting people who have no intention of actually representing their interests. North was more than happy to subvert the venerable gun group so he could haul away some of its cash. The terrible decisions by the group of late in terms of cucking to the gun grabbers all seem to lead to North. His interest was to stuff his pockets with money, not advance the interests of gun owners and gun rights.
It is a good example of how the con works in politics. North has spent a lifetime flattering the sorts of people willing to give money to the NRA. He is very good at flattering these sorts of people, which is how he made a TV career telling other people’s war stories. He is very good at flattering middle-class white people. The National Rifle Association naturally assumed he would be a good face for them, as he appeals to the sorts of people they represent. They made the mistake of trusting someone who flattered them.
I remember reading about his ascent to one of the seats of power, and wondering what the hell they were thinking. In retrospect, it should have been obvious to the NRA front office that Oliver North was no Charlton Heston.