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Letter to the editor in

“The two most controlling and evil men in America today are Grover Norquist of the Americans for Tax Reform and Wayne LaPierre of the National Rifle Association. They are both more powerful and influential than the president of the United States and the majority and minority leaders of the U.S. House and Senate.

As a result of the great influence of these two non-elected leaders, our lawmakers find it impossible to enact any laws that would bring about reasonable and sensible tax policies and gun policies in this country. Unfortunately, our elected leaders are more concerned about their next election fight with their opponents than they are about confronting these two men and their minority agendas.

I’ve been interested in politics and government for 70-plus years, and I’ve never seen this degree of polarization in our governmental process. Unfortunately, I don’t see any changes in the foreseeable future that would solve our many problems and restore sanity to our political system as long as these two men and others like them hold such unchecked and unchallenged power and authority.

Carl Volkmann, Springfield

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  1. Maybe think about controlling for the fact that “our elected leaders are more concerned about their next election fight with their opponents than they are about confronting these two men and their minority agendas.” To the extent that we continue to see corporations as people and campaign donations as protected speech, no high elected official is likely to take on any cause that might reduce his campaign donations.

  2. The American taxpayers might not agree with this joker’s definition of “reasonable and sensible tax policies.” And I’m pretty sure most of us on this site would disagree with his notion of “(reasonable and sensible) gun policies.” And I’m damned sure the Founding Fathers would disagree with him.

    • Oh, I know what the greedy old SOB thinks are “reasonable” policies – rape the successful and disarm the peasants to make sure they don’t revolt against their oppressors.

  3. You know I’m not the biggest fan of the NRA, but I wouldn’t call them evil.

    But more to the point I HAVE to say this again, the same thing I’ve been saying for years about the finances of this nation. If you confiscate all the assets of the top earns in the USA you still can not pay this years budget. Any talk about making the rich ‘pay their far share’ is complete BS.

    • If you look at the data for what percentage of all taxes are paid by different brackets (top 25%, top 10%, top 1%, etc of income earners), you’ll see that the “evil rich” keep paying a higher and higher proportion of all taxes collected. Last I looked (it’s been a year or two), the top 1% had something like 20% of the nations income, yet paid 40% or so of the nations income tax revenue (not even counting all other taxes).

  4. “Reasonable and sensible” gun policies are what we have in Mass. No new guns unless personally approved by marsha, 2.5 year felony for possession of a brass case or a can of mace w/o a permit, police discretion of whether you can own guns. And the same gangbanging killings seen in every other city.

    The rest of the country sees this, and wants no part of it. So they vote out of office anyone who tries to enact these laws. And if/when they do, the NRA lets the voters know, to vote them out. How is that evil?

  5. Amazing! Politicians are afraid to enact legislation that the people have clearly said they don’t want.

    So…what’s the problem, Carl?

  6. It’s not surprising that this guy was a librarian at the Lincoln Library in Springfield Illinois (where else?). His words and ideas definitely belongs in the ‘Fiction’ section that he is standing next too. Full disclosure: I’m not a supporter of the NRA.

    • No offense and not directed at you personally Aharon, but…..

      I can never get over all of the anti-NRA rhetoric I see here – i.e. “I am firmly 2a but the NRA = eh… not so much..”

      Who else is stopping what we fear so much?

  7. So much for the “new civility” in politics that the Demopublicans called for after Giffords.

    Anyway, if Lapierre is that powerful now, can he stop sending me mail-fraud DVDs?

  8. Complaining about polarization while calling people with whom he disagrees “evil and controlling” is the absolute height of hypocrisy. I fear the old fart might be senile.

    • Not senile, just a “progressive” leftist. Their assumptions about reality allow them to lie to themselves and others without guilt, as long as it moves their agenda forward. Their agenda is simply to place all power in a totalitarian state. Their primary lie is that such a state would have the best interests of the population at its core.

      They reject any fact that does not conform with their world view.

  9. LaPierre and the NRA pass no legislation. They’re an advocacy group. Their success reflects broad support and intelligent fundraising. The control freaks complain because they can’t figure out how to achieve the same success.

  10. One wants to protect our wallets, the other our right to self defense. I can see why liberals would hate them both.

  11. Sweet sweet tears. Keep yer bawlin. It makes me so happy, your tears are delectable.

  12. Astounding how many examples of “progressive” hypocrisy we see on a daily basis. “We need to stop polarizing politics and find common ground. Anyone who disagrees with me is evil.”

  13. Okay, i belong to the nra and recently joined the saf. The nra has what, less than 5 million members? In a nation of 300+ million. The nra would have very little influence on the outcome of an election if millions of non members didn’t agree with the nra’s agenda. And as i have said many times, we have the right under the constitution to own arms regardless of the opinion of domestic or foreign “progressives”

    • No biters? Fine! I’ll do this myself:

      You: “No. He isn’t elected. He’s appointed by elected NRA officials.”
      Me (aka Devil’s Advocate): “Oh. You mean like the President of the United States is appointed by the Electoral College …”

  14. The man in the photo looks like he would offer little resistance if his spouse were being raped or his family was ordered into a railroad box-car for transport to a relocation resort.

  15. Too worried about elections…
    God forbid politicians do what the majority of Americans agree with?

    • Beat me too it. I was going to say, “And here I thought it was George Soros whowas the most evil man in America…Or was it the Koch Brothers?”

  16. The truth is that Norquist and LaPierre owe whatever status they have in DC (and the letter author grossly overstates that level of influence) to their real or perceived ability to bring voters to bear on election day. They have their positions, in other words, as a result of the mechanics of a democratic system. They have power because people give it to them, or they can talk people into giving that power to them. People can change their minds at any time and LaPierre & Norquist would have no influence whatsoever, like any other elected official that loses the support of their backers (i.e., the people in their district).

    I’m thinking that it’s representative democracy that Mr. Volkmann has the real problem with.

    • spot on darren. gun grabbers, no matter how well their intentions are spreading the gospel of big brother and gobernment intrusion.

  17. Ahhhh…. the old trope that a small cabal of people with lots of money secretly control the govt/have disproportionate influence for their numbers. As a jewish gun owner, I find my self on very familiar and uncomfortable turf.

  18. If these two men truly had a minority agenda then I don’t think our elected leaders who are so concerned about their next election fight would be that concerned with their influence.

    The NRA gets under my skin too sometimes when I see how they are willing to let some of these politicians have a pass with trashing the rest of the Bill of Rights as long as they tow the line on 2A legislation.

    But, like the rest of the minority agenda, I keep paying my dues, because they do keep these politicians aware that gun owners vote. Usually not, but sometimes the difference in the candidates comes down to that one issue.

  19. With an out of control and lawless POTUS wiping his axe with the Constitution and violating civil rights at will it is now more than any time since the civil war we need our weapons to defend freedom.

  20. Cue Rod Serling “Twilight Zone” theme.

    So, this guy is upset because two men have the ethically-driven bravery to stand fearlessly athwart more federal collectivization?

    Hey. Carl. Go somewhere. Anywhere. Just not here.

  21. “I’ve been interested in politics and government for 70-plus years,…”

    OK, so now I know at what age brain rot sets in.

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