SWC’s Fast Five

It’s not your daddy’s vo-tech, U.S. says Google is too big for its britches, FDA approves a COVID-19 drug that won’t save you, more of us are just leaving the labor force and the diabolical ironclad beetle dares you to drive over it.

So, here’s this week’s Fast Five:

1 Study on apprentice program advances debate on how best education can promote income mobility.

Grads of the Federation for Advanced Manufacturing Education apprentice program fill what might be called “grey-collar” jobs, which involve both traditional blue-collar manual labor and the kind of critical thinking and communication typically associated with a four-year degree.

2 Antitrust: Google and why there is concern about its dominance

The Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against Google accusing it of holding an illegal monopoly over internet search and search advertising. State officials are investigating the company as well with the common thread being that Google is so powerful it is bad for the country.

3 Remdesivir is first FDA-approved COVID-19 treatment drug

The drug, which California-based Gilead Sciences Inc. is calling Veklury, cut the time to recovery by five days – from 15 days to 10 on average – in a large study led by the U.S. National Institutes of Health. Its price, $2,300 – $3,100, has been controversial, given that no studies have found it improves the odds of survival.

4 Workers who gave up look looking for jobs in U.S. tell a different unemployment rate story in September

The unemployment rate fell to 7.9 percent at the national level in September, from 8.4 percent in August. The lower rate reflected both people finding jobs as well as those who couldn’t find work and exited from the labor force altogether. Since growth depends in part on an expanding labor force, the loss of would-be workers could erode the economy’s potential.

5 This unsquishable bug and the future of flight

Called the diabolical ironclad beetle, the bug withstood compression of about 39,000 times its own weight. The beetle study is part of an $8 million project funded by the U.S. Air Force to explore how the biology of creatures such as the bug, mantis shrimp and bighorn sheep could help develop impact-resistant materials.