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California politician wants to ban the sale of Elon Musk's flamethrower in the state

By Polycount · 42 replies
Jan 30, 2018
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  1. California has certainly faced its share of problems lately. Massive wildfires recently devastated the southwest portion of the state, injuring and killing many. With this in mind, it's perhaps understandable that one California politician is a bit antsy about the possibility of putting this destructive power in the hands of the public.

    Unfortunately for California residents, that might mean Elon Musk's Boring Company flamethrower could be off-limits. The politician in question, California Assemblyman Miguel Santiago, initially thought Musk's flamethrower was a joke. Upon realizing The Boring Company's upcoming product was quite real, Santiago expressed a feeling of betrayal given the state's otherwise strong relationship with the company.

    "The state of California and the county and city of Los Angeles have entrusted Mr. Musk to help alleviate a real public policy problem here by executing a tunnel under the city to help alleviate traffic," said Santiago. "This deviation feels like a slap in the face." Santiago hopes to introduce legislation placing a ban on all Boring Company flamethrower sales within the state.

    It's worth noting Musk's flamethrower is not technically a true flamethrower - in many ways, it's little more than a large butane torch. Further, according to a tweet from Musk, the Boring Company flamethrower has a flame shorter than 10ft, making it perfectly legal. In the same tweet, he also noted he'd be "way more scared" of a steak knife than the Boring Company's flamethrower.

    Santiago's full statement can be seen in the following tweet from LA Times writer Liam Dillon:

    Permalink to story.

  2. yRaz

    yRaz Nigerian Prince Posts: 2,680   +1,928

    Is anyone really surprised? California doesn't like to have any fun

    what I got out of this was "how dare musk go make a flamethrower, I thought he was our friend!"
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2018
    Lurker101, Jamlad, Greg S and 2 others like this.
  3. Prosercunus

    Prosercunus TS Maniac Posts: 261   +108

    You can make crude versions of these for cheap.
    psycros likes this.
  4. gusticles41

    gusticles41 TS Guru Posts: 339   +388

    People are really setting some outlandish expectations for this thing. Flames under 10ft...It's a novelty. The BB gun of flamethrowers.

    But California has to go all California on it.
  5. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 2,458   +2,145

    Now imagine if it was a Trump flamethrower.
    davislane1 and EClyde like this.
  6. m4a4

    m4a4 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,322   +829

    Wait, California is overreacting? Nooooo....
    SirChocula and MoeJoe like this.
  7. Kenrick

    Kenrick TS Evangelist Posts: 630   +403

    Another politician who wants his name on the internet and newspaper to be relevant for the next election.
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2018
    SirChocula, Kotters and gusticles41 like this.
  8. seeprime

    seeprime TS Guru Posts: 319   +315

    I wonder if the CA politician even watched the video of it being used by Musk. It's a big propane torch, not a military type flamethrower.
  9. EClyde

    EClyde TS Evangelist Posts: 1,609   +574

    They could also ban straws. Wait, they did
    davislane1 likes this.
  10. EClyde

    EClyde TS Evangelist Posts: 1,609   +574

    It's cool but a really stupid device.
  11. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 3,335   +1,751

    I wonder if Musk would be more afraid to stand within range of his flame thrower while someone was pulling the flame thrower's trigger or within the same range from a knife?
    drjekelmrhyde likes this.
  12. Vulcanproject

    Vulcanproject TS Evangelist Posts: 569   +741

    Just market it as a portable barbecue
    lostinlodos likes this.
  13. Kotters

    Kotters TS Maniac Posts: 330   +223

    It's not even a flamethrower. It's a blowtorch.
    MoeJoe and drjekelmrhyde like this.
  14. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 14,370   +3,599

    This is like dueling douche bags. A soapbox for a sleazy politician, and more free publicity for carpetbagger Musk.
  15. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 14,370   +3,599

    Yeah well, since they banned straws, shouldn't they have banned paper money as well?

    EClyde likes this.
  16. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 14,370   +3,599

    "Further, according to a tweet from Musk, the Boring Company flamethrower has a flame shorter than 10ft, making it perfectly legal. In the same tweet, he also noted he'd be "way more scared" of a steak knife than the Boring Company's flamethrower".

    What Musk should be most afraid of, and subjected to, is being handcuffed to a chair, then forced to listen to his own press conferences over and over, without being permitted to close his eyes or sleep.

    Oh dear, I don't know what's gotten into me, I'm starting to think like George Orwell.
  17. Bubbajim

    Bubbajim TechSpot Staff Posts: 569   +568

    I've always been quite curious as to why you so completely despise Elon Musk. What gives?
    gusticles41 and Kotters like this.
  18. drjekelmrhyde

    drjekelmrhyde TS Guru Posts: 310   +92

    California is one of two states that BAN real flamethrowers. I know people like to rag on CA about their laws, but if some dipshiat stated a wildfire with one of these, we all(US) might end up paying for it.
  19. MoeJoe

    MoeJoe Banned Posts: 837   +441

    Cali has a flame thrower, 'trigger' problem in light of the recent fires. Not rocket science.
    That said ... they are still mostly a state full of freaks and idjits.
  20. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 14,370   +3,599

    Our "millennial" generation was raised on rather advanced SFX in movies, and rapidly advancing technology. Hence, "the suspension of disbelief", enabled in say a "Transformers" movie, tends to spill over into today's reality. When you watched an episode of "Commander Cody" from the 50's, you were entertained, but not hypnotized into believing you were watching real events.

    Musk is a master of subverting that line between Sci-Fi and reality, for his own ends, and certainly his own wealth. What I takeaway from anytime he opens is mouth, is that too many people hang on his every word as the truth, and he's the man who is going to make their Sci-Fi fantasies a reality. This is taken as fact, as if he's incapable of lying, being the folk hero of epic proportions as which he's managed to portray himself.

    Let's start with Tesla. For now, the only way to "save the environment", is to be as rich as the movie stars who own a bunch of them.

    Musk is a master of diversion. While it was being announced Tesla had lost a quarter billion dollars in its last quarter, Musk was out giving as press conference on how he was, "going to commission a space suit for his upcoming Martian colony". All I saw, was a diversionary dog and pony show. "Bullsh!ts finest hour", to paraphrase Winston Churchill.

    The beat goes on into the present, with him weaseling his way into California politics, with great promises of "traffic tunnels under Los Angeles", yet he has to sell hats, to get the money, to sell "flamethrowers", to get the money to dig a few more feet of tunnels.

    A week ago, Space-X dumped a 1/2 billion dollar spy satellite into the Indian ocean. Within hours, Musk was out making the patent statement, "our rocket did nothing wrong". I always thought the "denying something was the first sign of guilt", but what do I know? After all, I'm pushing 70, and have seen every faith healer and religious pretender from Billy Graham to Jimmy Swaggart that's come down the pike. How would I be able to spot one in the field of science? Personally, I think he cheaped out on the stage separation explosive bolts. Oh well, I'm on Social Security, you can piss your tax money however you choose

    After all, this generation pumps their money into strings of characters buried in some server somewhere. Just because I've gotten letters that have told me, "put a dollar in this envelope and mail it, or you will have a gypsy curse put on you", certainly doesn't mean that "block chain technology" is anything like that. Doesn't the term, "real estate", mean anything to you "tech types", with your faces buried into some virtual reality face mask?

    Since today's major players in politics have at least gotten advanced enough to not need, (or not be able to get away with), "faith healers" on their staffs,now we have Musk, "the faith scientist", to take their place.

    I had to associate Musk with one historical figure, it would be Rasputin. If I had to compare him with one cinematic character, it would be Burt Lancaster's "Rain Maker".

    When you compile Musk, "future achievements" you'll see that he's going to do everything, everywhere, at the same time, as long as you give him the money to do it, beforehand..
  21. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,246   +507

    I love Elon Musk and still think this device should be banned. My faith in humanity isn't great enough to put this type of tool in an everyday user's hands. Next we'll be hearing about people who get burned but "Flame throwers don't kill people, people kill people." I'd rather not arm those stupid people with another cool toy to kill other people with. Thousands of people are losing their homes in CA right now due to fire - it really makes sense to me.
  22. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 14,370   +3,599

    Musk is actually starting to show his true colors, appealing to the lowest common denominator to line his pockets. He's still your hero?

    "A charred body of a Japanese soldier who likely fell victim to an American flamethrower, somewhere in the pacific."

    Oh well, I guess model trains are too passive and passe', to meet the emotional needs of today's youth.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
  23. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,246   +507

    No one is perfect ;) When it comes to his technology related smarts, yes I look up to him. I know nothing about him as a person but I do know if you dig deep enough with anyone you'll always find something you don't like.
  24. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 14,370   +3,599

    Well, from what I've been been able to glean, Musk really isn't the source of the technology, he's just the carnival barker hawking the wares.

    After humans reach, "the age of reason", they don't do or accomplish anything without an ulterior motive. IMO, Musk's aren't really that deep below the surface, you would need anything like a shovel to uncover them.

    In the old days it was speculated (*), "behind every great fortune, there's a great crime"

    Which when updated becomes, "behind every inflated imaginary fortune, there's a sociopath".

    (*) Of course, it was never able to be proved..;)

    @LNCPapa This thread got only 3 replies: https://www.techspot.com/community/topics/two-charged-in-my-big-coin-cryptocurrency-scam.244064/

    So, either the young people of today have their heads way up their high knees, or they were all out buying video cards for mining, when it was posted.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2018
  25. wiyosaya

    wiyosaya TS Evangelist Posts: 3,335   +1,751

    When I take a look at Musk, what I see is a person who was one of the founders of paypal. He provided a safe environment (YMMV) for internet cash transactions in exchange for a fee. Doing so did not take technical knowledge. He made his fortune completely off other's money. Whether he is guardian or parasite is a matter of individual perspective. He probably made the most money when he sold off his shares of paypal rather than through the fees that he collected. Was he smart for doing this? Again, a matter of individual perspective.

    After paypal, he has invested his Tesla and SpaceX. The ideas of an electric car and rockets are not new. He has contributed no innovations in either space propulsion or electric cars. Even the idea of a hyperloop is well over a century old - and I am willing to bet that he first saw the idea on the Sci-Fi show Bablyon 5.

    AFAIK, he has no advanced research projects in any of these fields. Electric cars and space propulsion, IMO, are ripe with technical opportunity to those with money to burn in truly advanced research. For example, ion drives for spacecraft, and supercapacitors for electric storage. He is not the principle engineer for either of these ventures, rather he is relying on teams in both companies to engineer what he cannot.

    In fact, he has pawned off the research, I.e., the risk, on the hyperloop to other entities.

    This flamethrower, despite the cries of "its just a big blowtorch," is useless and potentially dangerous item - a stunt aimed at those interested in booze, broads, and bombs - at least as I see it. He is trying to raise money through the use of a showman's stunt likely because he cannot raise the money otherwise.

    On top of that, some of the people who he will sell this thing to will likely be dumb enough to actually start a serious fire or kill someone with this. It is not an innocuous item. To me, it reeks of an immature intellect trying to gain attention for a, IMO, supremely questionable venture. Civilization changing use of great wealth takes, IMO, great wisdom. IMO, Musk does not have the wisdom to make civilization changing advancements with his wealth. In his lack of advanced research, he seems to be trying to collect more cash from whims.

    So, my bias is against him; however, step back and take a critical look at what he wants to do with this tunnel. In theory, it is perhaps a good idea that might ease traffic congestion. However, as will all tunneling projects it will come with a great cost that might never be made up by the ease in congestion. There are safety concerns, too. How much will the subscription fee be that he charges for access? On one level, as I see it, it is a good idea - the part about easing traffic congestion, however, from a practical standpoint, it has to be one of the most impractical ideas I have ever heard of, and this is almost certainly why he cannot get funding elsewhere and must resort to stunts to raise money for it. As I see it, that he must resort to potentially dangerous stunts like this to make money should be a sign to him that perhaps the idea is not as good as he thinks it is.

    To me, it seems that he is acting like a little child who has been told by his parents that they are not going to buy something for him, and is throwing a temper tantrum in an effort to get what he wants.

    You are certainly welcome to idolize him if you like. To me, he seems to be frivolously throwing money at things trying to make them a reality.
    captaincranky likes this.

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