NRA Exceeds Even My Expectations for Total Derangement

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Guess what? It turns out that if you have only one political forecasting metric—modern conservatives are loons and will always act the part—your forecasting accuracy goes up. On Wednesday, I reminded everyone that when the NRA announced after the Newtown massacre that it was “prepared to offer meaningful contributions to help make sure this never happens again,” it meant nothing of the kind. But even at that, I wasn’t quite prepared for this:

In his first extensive public remarks since the mass shooting at a Connecticut school last Friday, the head of National Rifle Association called Friday for lawmakers to take action to put police officers in schools in an effort to curb violent outbreaks like the one that took place last week.

“The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun,” NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre said at a news conference in Washington…. “Politicians pass laws for gun-free school zones, they issue press releases bragging about them … in doing so they tell every insane killer in America that schools are the safest place to inflict maximum mayhem with minimum risk,” said LaPierre, head of the nation’s largest gun-rights group.

You really need to read the entire transcript of LaPierre’s comments, italics and all, to get a full sense of what he was saying. You can practically see the flicks of spittle in your mind’s eye. Here’s a small taste:

Now, I can imagine the shocking headlines you’ll print tomorrow morning: “More guns,” you’ll claim, “are the NRA’s answer to everything!” Your implication will be that guns are evil and have no place in society, much less in our schools. But since when did the word “gun” automatically become a bad word?

….With all the foreign aid, with all the money in the federal budget, we can’t afford to put a police officer in every school? Even if they did that, politicians have no business — and no authority — denying us the right, the ability, or the moral imperative to protect ourselves and our loved ones from harm.

The real problems, according to LaPierre, are Hollywood, video games, the national media that reports on gun massacres, demonization of firearms, and a defenseless population. America’s 300 million guns not only have nothing to do with gun massacres, they’re the answer to gun massacres.

Astounding. I figured that LaPierre would at least pretend to be willing to have a “dialog” about gun laws. But no. He let us have it with both barrels, so to speak. Republicans have now gotten their marching orders.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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