Jon Stokes at the Los Angeles Times reveals "The Boring Truth About 3D-Printed Guns." If you know that 3D printing is mostly about making knick-knacks right now, you probably guessed at least one boring truth: that making a gun out of plastic is a recipe for making a gun that fires maybe once before melting. You may not have known that the ability to make guns out of parts is not a new thing, or (even!) that putting gun blueprint files on the internet is not a new thing. In re what to do, Mr. Stokes comes to more or less the same conclusion as Thom Hartmann did earlier this year -- "(s)omething like a federal license for simple possession of semiautomatic weapons."
Ho hum, a Washington Post report finds that rents are still going up for poor folks in America's most expensive cities but actually dropping for rich folks. Because rich folks are landlords' kind of folks -- and what are poor folks going to do, live in the street? How many times must I tell these pimps! This is not how a free market operates! Truly free markets don't give landlords the "freedom" to extract as much tribute from renters as possible -- truly free markets reduce payments that exceed required costs. The economists' word for "payments that exceed required costs," as you may know, is rent.
Have we reached the point where anti-Nazi protestors will now vastly outnumber pro-Nazi protestors, as happened this past Sunday at the "Unite the Right" rally? We can only hope! But we ought to remain vigilant anyway, lest, oh, I don't know, hypothetically speaking, some future Presidential candidate who panders to racists and says nasty crap about black and brown people all the time somehow gets elected. (At least we had the spectacle of the rally's organizer whining that "I have people attacking me left, right and center" at a rally called Unite the Right.)
FCC Inspector General does, in fact, report that the FCC lied to Congress about a hack attack that never took place. Remember that this "hack" just so happened to take place the same two days that a crapload of Americans -- having just watched John Oliver's latest righteous rant on HBO about the matter -- took to the FCC website to comment on their net neutrality repeal proposal. And you know, FCC Chair Ajit Pai can talk all he want about those other people who failed him, but that only makes him just another boss who only acts like the boss when things are going well. A real boss would take responsibility for failures on his watch, too. Then again, see his boss, our President.
I don't know what you've heard, but scientists have most certainly not figured out how to reverse aging -- they've managed to stop individual cells from aging in laboratory experiments. Specifically, they've delivered very small amounts of hydrogen sulfide (found in rotten eggs!) to some very old cells and made them start dividing again; cells tend to stop dividing when they get old, and then they accumulate in organs, and adversely affect the functioning level of other, younger cells. Next step, I imagine: trying to figure out how to deliver hydrogen sulfide a) only where it's needed and b) in amounts that aren't poisonous. That means don't go around huffing rotten eggs so you can stay young.
Finally, Negin Owliaei at the Our Future blog describes how the good citizens of Lancaster County, PA kept the notorious private prison corporation Geo Group from taking over the country's prison re-entry function. How did they win, when clearly the county government stood against them? They planned townhall meetings and packed county commissioner meetings, that's how, because if there's one thing politicians don't like, it's the people they're supposed to serve getting all up in their grills, like they're supposed to do. I wish the good folks of Lancaster County luck, since they kept Geo out, but they still have to convince the county that what they had (a group of non-profits helping prisoners readjust once they got out) wasn't broke and thus doesn't need fixing.