Idiots Are Pointing Lasers at Airplanes a Lot More Often These Days

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WTF?

Reports of people pointing lasers at aircraft have ballooned nationwide, jumping from 384 in 2006 to 3,960 in 2013, according to the Federal Aviation Administration. Aware of that increase and the danger posed to pilots and travelers by lasers, the FBI began offering rewards for information leading to arrests in the 12 cities that frequently saw the most incidents.

….California often leads the country in reports of flashing lasers at aircraft, Eimiller said. Federal records also show the number of reported incidents have increased in Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Jose, San Diego and Oakland from 2011 to 2013.

Why has laser flashing suddenly become the moron’s prank of choice? Even the Beavis and Butthead set usually have the minimal common sense to choose dumb stunts that will kill, at most, a carload of people. What’s going on here?

In any case, for the next 90 days you can earn a $10,000 reward if you stake out your local airport and catch one of these guys. Go to it.

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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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