Afternoon Links

Tuesday, March 25th, 2008
  • Tampa prosecutors plan to go ahead with charges against a 93-year-old man who offered a prostitute $20 for . . . well, I suppose it could have been sex. I think the guy deserves a commendation for his ambition.
  • Looks like ATF really does take that “always remember forfeiture” mantra to heart. The agency has seized hundreds of guns from a licensed Gilbert, Arizona dealer, but won’t say why, and have made no arrests.
  • The New York Times discovers rickrolling. If Rick Astley is smart, he’ll have a sense humor about all of this, and capitalize on it. How great would it be to get Astley himself to pull off a high-profile rickrolling? Something televised nationally, I’m thinking.
  • Here’s a nice story: A man with elephantiasis is the recipient of the world’s first full-face transplant.
  • A 10-year-old girl with terminal brain cancer has a dying wish to have her dad at her bedside. Dad is in federal prison on a five-year drug sentence. He’s due to be released next year. The prison warden has the discretion to grant a furlough to prisoners under “extraordinary circumstances.” He has thus far refused, concluding that this situation doesn’t meet that standard. I understand his decision. We can’t risk any compassion when it comes to illicit drugs, lest other 10-year olds with terminal cancer get the wrong message. This is a “war,” after all.
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  • 17 Responses to “Afternoon Links”

    1. #1 |  andyinsdca | 

      rickrolling has a very dangerous new element…if you get “rickrolled” to kiddy pr0n, the FBI now assumes that you went to the pr0n on purpose.

      Be afraid. Be very afraid.

    2. #2 |  Leshrac | 

      Re: the dying girl. It’s a small man that says he’s doing his job when he could show some compassion. I’m sure if the father were offered time with his daughter and then to return to serve out the remainder of his sentence he would leap at the chance. This story is so sad in that it shows how little good comes of “do gooder” laws.

    3. #3 |  Jon H | 

      “If Rick Astley is smart, he’ll have a sense humor about all of this, and capitalize on it”

      Hm. The Guardian just had something about rick-rolling, too.

      Either the Times writer is riding the Guardian’s coattails, or Astley’s PR firm or label is promoting this.

    4. #4 |  treefroggy | 

      It’s not Elephantiasis; It’s Neurofibromatosis; Elephant Mans Disease.

    5. #5 |  Eric | 

      Rick Astley talked about rickrolling in an interview a couple of months ago:

    6. #6 |  MadTom | 


      Can’t believe I fell for that.

    7. #7 |  TomMil | 

      Re: The 93 Year old man……There’s always the impossibility defense. No jury is gonna convict this guy! What are these prosecutors thinking?

    8. #8 |  Dave Krueger | 

      I was going to comment about prostitution laws, but after I edited out the cuss words, there was nothing left.

    9. #9 |  ZappaCrappa | 

      And I was going to comment on the heartless warden and the dying girl….but like Dave, after I edited out all the cuss words……

    10. #10 |  Kimberly Hellmuth | 

      Re: 93 year old

      My father-in-law is a public defender in our midsized town. When his dad was about 85, in a nursing home, he asked my FIL if he could just have one of the hookers he represented come visit him. FIL, laughed and went on with the day, but apparently in court a few days later with a judge and prosecutor he was friends with he made a joking offer that “he had a community service idea” for the girl he was defending. :)

      Sorry, kind of random, but I thought it was funny. Although I suppose he could have been charged with…something!

    11. #11 |  Steve Lieber | 

      Here’s a legit, non-rickroll link to a Rick Astley interview:

    12. #12 |  Thomas Paine's Goiter | 

      The only fair outcome for that fucking warden is testicular cancer.

    13. #13 |  Rickrolling | 

      […] as Radley Balko asks, would he be willing to take part […]

    14. #14 |  Ben | 

      Radley: I usually agree with you on drug issues. However, having read a little about the girl with cancer and the father in prison here’s my thought: The drug war notwithstanding, Meth is a terrible drug to use and almost as bad to make.

      There’s a chance the father’s actions of cooking meth in the house where his daughter lived may have lead to the cancer.

      He shouldn’t be in jail on drug charges maybe, but he should be there on child endangerment charges.

      I’ve got a 16year old cousin who’s dying of cancer. I know how horrible it is to watch, but it does not change the fact that this father put his daughter at serious risk by making certian chances before getting arrested.

    15. #15 |  scottp | 

      Ben, if you have a link to something that confirms the father was manufacturing meth in the home, post it. Ive read nothing that claims the father was cooking meth in the home.
      On the other hand, if your suggestion that the father’s meth cooking might be the cause of his daughters cancer is mere conjecture, please, go be stupid somwhere else.

    16. #16 |  Michael | 


      You’re so smart! The fact is, elephantitis is a parasitic disease that damages lymphatic channels and would result in a graft failure, if even attempted.

      Nerofibromatosis is due to multiple benign tumors. They could be easily removed and grafting take place! Or, in this guy’s case, the entire facial skin replaced The risk of failure is still pretty high, though! I am glad they are getting so much better with the anti-rejection care in transplants. I did six kidney transplants while in training. And they were medical nightmares!

    17. #17 |  David T | 

      I would sympathize with the 93 year old guy, but I think $20, even as an opening offer, shows him to be too much of a cheapskate. (OK, granted, it’s for a [supposed] street whore, not a porn star at the Bunny Ranch or a seven-diamond escort from the Emperor’s Club. Still, I assume the cops use reasonably attractive policewomen for these details…)