Read time: 3 minutes

CAUGHT: NRA Shill Invented Online Persona To Praise His Work

You know you're a fraud when you pose as somebody else to praise your own work. And throwing your family under the bus in your defense is a good look, too.
Views:

During a September 18 Joint Economic Committee Hearing on Gun Violence in America, discredited gun researcher John Lott looked like a fool when he was confronted by Senator Heinrich for using a fake persona online to promote himself as a true scholar in comment sections.

Heinrich entered in the Congressional record Washington Post article called Scholar Invents Fan To Answer His Critic, in which Lott is exposed as a charlatan of the worst order.

The American Enterprise Institute fraud admitted he was culpable of using the handle "MaryRosh" and stated, "I probably shouldn't have done it -- I know I shouldn't have done it -- but it's hard to think of any big advantage I got except to be able to comment fictitiously,"

Senator Heinrich then read some of the article into the record:

Now this is under the name Mary Rosh, but it is speaking to various online publications and was, I believe, authored by Dr. Lott.

“I had him for a Ph.D.-level empirical methods class when he taught at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania back in the early '90s, well before he gained national attention, and I have to say he was the best professor I ever had.” Does it show good judgement for a researcher to comment that way with regard to your own research under a name that is clearly not transparent? I won't use the word fraudulent, but -- "

I will use the word fraudulent because that's what it was.

Lott immediately he began lying to the Senator:

First of all, I did not write that. It was a family account and there was somebody else in my family who was responding to attacks that were on me."

Lott admitted that he did use MaryRosh back in 2003, okay,

And what family shares a phony online persona? I guess it would occur if daddy or mommy are the ones who created it to draft their children into helping them do their nefarious bidding?

OK? So I don’t police everybody in my family when they go and do things like that, and I had members of my family who wrote a couple reviews on my books and other things like that. I'm not going to go into -- "


↓ Story continues below ↓

Heinrich called him out for his new lie:

You're quoted in this article as saying, “I probably shouldn't have done it."

At this point point his time was up, but Lott tried to answer.

"Did I use the account myself sometimes? And I did..." Lott said. he was then cut off from finishing because time had expired.

Lott began to whine saying he's been attacked by other committees and he was shut down.

As The WaPo article stated:

Mary Rosh thinks the world of John R. Lott Jr., the controversial American Enterprise Institute scholar whose book "More Guns, Less Crime" caused such a stir a few years ago

In postings on Web sites in this country and abroad, "Rosh" has tirelessly defended Lott against his harshest critics. He is a meticulous researcher, she's repeatedly told those who say otherwise. He's not driven by the ideology of the left or the right. "Rosh" has even summoned memories of the classes she took from Lott a decade ago to illustrate Lott's probity and academic gifts.

"I have to say that he was the best professor I ever had," Rosh gushed in one Internet posting.Indeed, Mary Rosh and John Lott agree about nearly everything. Well they should, because Mary Rosh is John Lott -- or at least that's the pseudonym he's used for three years to defend himself against his critics in online debates, Lott acknowledged this week.

Frauds, charlatans and liars like John Lott make up the entirety of right-wing "experts" that populate conservative think tanks. But those think tanks also have bottomless pits of money from lobbies and corporations who want to buy DC legitimacy via "research."

The NRA got their money's worth from John Lott.

UPDATE: Heinrich has thoughts:

"If my friends across the aisle are going to field a credible argument against the gun violence legislation we are proposing… maybe they should have credible sources."

More C&L Coverage

Comments

We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service (revised 3/17/2016) for information on our posting policy.