New tell-all book from NRA's highest-ranking former executive exposes 'corruption, greed and paranoia'
Gage Skidmore (Flickr)

A shocking tell-all book will be released from the highest-ranking former executive of the National Rifle Association (NRA), Josh Powell on Sept. 8, exposing the group for years of corruption.

The New York Times has excerpts of the book which unveils accusations of the group have been true.

Inside the NRA: A Tell-All Account of Corruption, Greed and Paranoia Within the Most Powerful Political Group in America comes amid a lawsuit against the NRA by New York Attorney General Letitia James. The group, which was founded in New York, is accused of using millions of dollars to fund CEO Wayne LaPierre's lavish lifestyle, expensive wardrobe and fancy travel.

"Mr. Powell was assailed in the attorney general’s complaint, which said he was fired in December 'for falsifying his travel expenses,'" the Times reported. "A lawyer for Mr. Powell has said that allegations in the suit 'will be shown to be the result of false accusations made by Wayne LaPierre and others.' And Mr. Powell said he walked away from 'a substantial severance package' because the N.R.A. wanted him to sign 'a nondisclosure agreement, which I declined.'”

The book recalls the horrific massacre at a Newtown, Connecticut elementary school that killed 27 students and staff. Powell wasn't in the NRA leadership yet, but in a conversation with the NRA's ad firm, Ackerman McQueen, Powell predicted the Sandyhook shooting would be "bad" for the group.

“Get ready,” Powell recalled an executive telling him. “This is going to be the mother of all gunfights. It’s really bad. There are still dead kids on the floor. Watch and learn. If we do this right the members will go nuts.”

After Newtown, Powell said “membership money and donations were an open spigot,” also saying that “if we needed more, Wayne would just pour ‘gasoline on the fire,’ as he put it.”

The NRA was working “to create and fuel the toxicity of the gun debate until it became outright explosive,” the book claims. “We only knew one speed and one direction: Sell the fear.”

He explained that such actions work “to excite the most extreme faction of our membership — they ate it up.”

But it's the facts about the corruption inside the group that the prosecutors are more likely to be interested in. One would assume that paid members would be furious that the organization would be using their dollars so LaPierre could have handmade suits. He almost scored a $6 million home that he asked the NRA to buy for him after the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida. Instead, memberships rolled in.

"The waste and dysfunction at the N.R.A. was staggering, costing the organization and its members hundreds of millions of dollars over the years," Powell recalled in the book. “What I witnessed during my time at the N.R.A. should horrify every gun owner and Second Amendment advocate. Wayne La Pierre oversees his evil circus at the expense of all those Americans who are lawful gun owners and dues-paying N.R.A. members.”

While Powell doesn't go into the lawsuit, the Times described it as "formidable."

"LaPierre is accused of using N.R.A. money to pay $13.5 million to a personal travel consultant over six and a half years; to cover $1 million in costs ferrying his family on private flights, without him; and for frequent trips to the Bahamas," the report explained. "There, he allegedly made use of an N.R.A. contractor’s lavish yacht called 'Illusions.' He once spent more than $12,000 to put his niece up at a Four Seasons hotel for eight nights, according to the complaint."

Read the full report and excerpts from the book at the New York Times.