Now, I've got to show you another one of Chip Ahoy's little riffs, because it's what jogged my thinking on the subject for some reason. Here's Chip in the comments thread to that other post, the one where I showed those David Gregory masks (designed by Chip). This is a little dialogue:
"No. It doesn't look that threatening to me. If that's what you were thinking. No. It just doesn't."
"What do you mean? Are you insane? This magazine holds thirty rounds."
"So? So? So? Is that all you got? It holds thirty!"
"So. It's small. Looks like a PEZ dispenser to me."
"WHAT? So, this is amusing to you? You find this amusing."
Caption: "It holds 30." I'm not sure exactly why that jogged my thinking, but suddenly I understand the drama Gregory (and his people) were trying to enact. It's a deep psychic memory of childhood. Gregory sought dominance over his interlocutor, NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre, and the idea — in the act of picking up that magazine and beginning an interrogation about it — was that Gregory would become (subliminally) a parent figure who would push LaPierre into the subordinate role of the little boy, the cowering child confronted with undeniable evidence of his wrongdoing. What's THIS I found in your room?
The plan was for LaPierre to babble lamely, scrambling to explain it away, like the kid trying to concoct some cockamamie reason why that (whatever) got into his room. He'd look foolish and guilty, as Dad continues to hold up the item which the kid knows will be the defeat of every idea that flashes through his stupid, stupid brain.
The scenario didn't play out as scripted. LaPierre is a stolid veteran of many a confrontational interview. He's not going to let the interviewer get the upper hand that easily. Somebody needs to tell Gregory: We all want the hand. Hand is tough to get.