Elon Musk Nearly Ready to Ship Cool New Forest Fire Starter

Steven K. Doi via ZUMA

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Unless, in the end, this turns out to be a joke after all, visionary entrepreneur Elon Musk is getting ready to ship 20,000 flamethrowers to waiting customers next week. It’s not clear why Musk decided to market flamethrowers as “fun” toys for the masses, but that’s how it goes with visionaries. They see things that you and I don’t, and they see around things—brush fires, third-degree burns—that ordinary humans view as obstacles.

But enough about that. The idiocy of this project is pretty obvious, and one of Musk’s flamethrowers will either be responsible for starting a huge forest fire or it won’t. We’ll have to wait and see.

UPDATE: This post originally continued with some stuff about an attempt to ban recreational flamethrowers in California. However, it was based on misreading a quote from Eugene Volokh by 180 degrees. It wasn’t salvageable in any way, so I’ve deleted the whole thing. Apologies to all involved.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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