Five in a Flash: October 4, 2017

John Locher / AP

In today’s news: bump stocks, Trump’s Puerto Rico visit, abortion, Catalonia, the Yahoo hack, and the MLB playoffs.


Las Vegas shooter had twelve guns fitted with ‘bump stocks’ for faster firing (Washington Times) – “Federal officials say the Las Vegas shooter had devices attached to 12 weapons that allow semiautomatic rifles to mimic fully automatic gunfire. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Special Agent in Charge Jill Schneider also told reporters Tuesday that Stephen Paddock had nearly 50 guns in three locations. She said he had a combination of rifles, shotguns and pistols. The gun attachment that mimics automatic gunfire is a little-known device called a ‘bump stock’ that was not widely sold. The stocks have been around for less than a decade, and Schneider said officials determined they were legal.”

Trump hails ‘incredible’ response in ‘lovely’ trip to storm-torn Puerto Rico (Washington Post) – “President Trump arrived in Puerto Rico on Tuesday as the territory struggled to recover from Hurricane Maria, which has left nearly all the island without power and most residents without ­water nearly two weeks later. But Trump’s focus was on the ‘unbelievable’ and ‘incredible’ job that his administration has done so far. He repeatedly played down the destruction to the island, telling local officials they should feel ‘very proud’ they ­haven’t lost hundreds of lives like in ‘a real catastrophe’ like Hurricane Katrina along the Gulf Coast in 2005. But he also complained that the small territory’s disaster threw the nation’s budget ‘a little out of whack.'”

House passes ban on abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy (CNN) – “The House of Representatives passed legislation Tuesday that would criminalize abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy, with exceptions for instances where the life of the mother is at risk and in cases involving rape or incest. The bill passed the House by a vote of 237 for and 189 against, largely on party lines. The Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which is similar to legislation that failed in 2013 and 2015, has support from the White House this time around.”

Spain’s king says Catalonia leaders pushing independence show ‘inadmissable disloyalty’ (LA Times) – “Spain’s King Felipe VI on Tuesday accused authorities in the northeast region of Catalonia of disloyalty to the state in what he called their unacceptable push for independence. ‘Certain authorities in Catalonia have repeatedly, consciously and deliberately not complied with the constitution,’ the king said in a rare televised speech to the nation. . . . Moments after the king’s comments, Catalans emerged on balconies across the regional capital, Barcelona, clanging pots and pans in a chorus of dissent. Earlier, thousands of demonstrators, many of them favoring secession and opposing violence, marched in downtown Barcelona.”

Yahoo says all three billion accounts hacked in 2013 data theft (Reuters) – “Yahoo on Tuesday said that all 3 billion of its accounts were hacked in a 2013 data theft, tripling its earlier estimate of the size of the largest breach in history, in a disclosure that attorneys said sharply increased the legal exposure of its new owner, Verizon Communications Inc. The news expands the likely number and claims of class action lawsuits by shareholders and Yahoo account holders, they said.”


Ranking all 10 MLB postseason teams based on rootability (Sporting News) – “At the end of play Sunday, 10 MLB teams lived to play another day. The other 20 teams packed their lockers and bid farewell to the 2017 season. If you’re a fan of one of the 10 teams that advanced to the postseason, your allegiance is clear. On the other hand, fans of those other 20 teams might be left wondering what to do until opening day 2018. You may not have a horse in the postseason race, but if you’re looking to hitch your wagon to a team this postseason, we offer this rankings, presented from lowest to highest based on ‘root factor.'”


A scientific defense of libertarianism (The Right)

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Connor Mighell is a third-year law student at the University of Alabama School of Law with an undergraduate degree in Political Philosophy from Baylor University. He is a contributor at Merion West and the curator of "Five in a Flash," a weekday newsletter. His work has been featured at The Federalist, SB Nation, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Hill, The Dallas Morning News, and The New Americana.

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