While I’m sure GOA doesn’t spend as much money as the NRA I’m equally certain they don’t spend it on such things as headquarters buildings, airfare for nearly a hundred directors to annual meetings or exorbitant salaries for their own pet poiliticians — which is all LaPierre and Cox are.
For comparison, NRA’s form 990s is here. NRA spends 1.3% of it’s annual operating budget on executive compensation. GOA’s executive compensation accounts for 11.5% of its total operating budget, and Larry pays himself a salary or 33.6k a year the GOA Foundation as well, which NRA does not do. True, Wayne and his buddies make a lot more than Larry and his buddies, but NRA is a much larger organization. How many CEO’s of 332 million dollar a year companies can you name that make less than a million a year? Wayne does not make substantively more than the CEO of the small biotech company I work for, and we have yet to make a profit. Chris Cox could make a hell of a lot more money working on K street. James Baker left ILA to start his own K street lobby firm. As for fancy buildings, NRA spends 2% of its annual expenses for office space. GOA spends 7.6% of it’s annual expenses on office space.
But let’s not stop there. We can also examine the Form 990 of GOA Foundation, and examine the Form 990 of NRA Foundation. Ignoring for the moment I had to up my upload limits just to fit NRA Foundation’s Form 990 on the server, which do you think looks like it’s doing more to advance the cause? NRA Foundation’s executive compensation is a big fat zero. All the NRA Foundation officers are uncompensated. Just look at the list of grants paid out by NRA Foundation. To 4H clubs, to JROTC, to shooting clubs, Boy Scout Troops, the list goes on. They paid 15.2 million dollars in grants to do things like help raise new generations of shooters. I could write for twenty pages about all the things NRA Foundation does.
GOA Foundation, in comparison, spends 11% of its total expenses paying Larry Pratt. Totals paid out were 149 thousand dollars for “Research, publish and distribute numerous books, monographs, issue briefs, auto and video tapes, and other educational materials relating to firearms rights.” In 2007, 114,000 was paid out by their legal defense program.
Like I said before, none of the things GOA are doing are worthless endeavors, but we should be serious about which organization is making the greater contribution to the cause of the Second Amendment, and keeping our shooting culture alive and well. I would not, on my own initiative, compare GOA to NRA, because I think there is no comparison between the two that is fair. They each have different roles to play. But GOA makes a regular habit of claiming to be an equal or better than NRA. When you look at the matter seriously, that’s a laughable assertion.
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