A couple of weeks back I discussed how a group of US tea party types had created a plastic gun, then put the designs on the internet. Theyre motivation for this was part of some warped effort to stop the guvmint taking away peoples guns.
Of course as I discuss in a further post about 3D printing (and as the register mentions here) any such weapon would be at best a crude musket like weapon (i.e. unreliable and dangerous to use), which would be of little practical use (the idea that a couple of gun nuts could seriously take on the military forces of any country armed with these is simply absurd). Inevitably I concluded that the only people who would have any use in making such a weapon were criminals or terrorists. Indeed I suggested that rather than the liberator they should call it the Jihaditor or muggers friend.
Well it would seem Ive been proved right. A recent raid by British police has sized what they claim are parts of a fire arm made by a 3D printer and they are working on the assumption that the weapons were being created for use by local criminal gangs.
And the likely effect of this? Will the UK government now legalise firearms (as the tea party types propose) and introduce a right to carry in the UK? Ah…no! The likely outcome is more guns and weapons in the hands of criminals and that the police will use this to request that more of them (who are currently unarmed) should be issued with Tasers or firearms. And no doubt theyll start abusing their stop and search powers all the more on the pretext of searching for firearms. No doubt security will get tighter at airports and pretty soon everyone will have to go through the smut booths and be body scanned.
On a similar theme, I discussed a few weeks ago how a similar effort of another group of libertarians to introduce new currencies free from government bureaucracy was also being used by criminals to launder money, buy and sell drugs, as well as even paying for the hiring of hitmen.
Ultimately what both these incidents do is prove, in a rather ironic manner, that libertarians more than anybody need government, if only to protect themselves from themselves! We can debate what form that government should take, what the limits of its powers should be and what its priorities should be (just look at the Tories for an example of what happens when a governments gets these things badly wrong).