Monday, March 26, 2018

1923 Madame La Zonga's Workaround

Note: R- rated content follows. Some readers and listeners may find it unsuitable.

Craig Newmark

So Craigslist has eliminated it’s “personals” section.  Well, isn’t that righteous.  No more ads for “casual encounters” some of which may have facilitated sex trafficking.

Oh, wait a minute.  There’s a new law that makes it possible for municipalities and individuals to sue companies that help making trafficking possible.  It is a good law.  A long time missing piece of the war on this crime.

But more likely it’s the lawsuit part that troubled the owners of the internet classified page than a sudden reawakening of its vestigial conscience.

The Wessays (™) Department of Social Research would occasionally scan the site in anticipation of the shutdown. Here is what we found:

--ads written in third grade level English that promised bliss but first you had to “verify” that you were real by signing up for a web service and giving your credit card number.

--ads written by computer robots that promised bliss but first you had to verify that you were real by signing up for a web service and giving your credit card number.

--telephone numbers in non-existent area codes.

In other words, they’re  come-ons that sought your personal information and maybe steal your good name as someone writing as William Shakespeare once said.

The sex for hire ads were little different from other ads on Craigslist that sought your personal information.  But there was one major difference:  if you were scammed by “Women Seeking Men” or “Casual Encounters,” you were unlikely to make a big fuss about it.  After all, who wants to admit to being a man seeking a woman? Especially the married “pillar of the community” types.

Perfectly OK if you were scammed by someone selling a dining room set or who offered discount diet advice or cheap fake tickets to hot ticket events.  But sex? Perish forbid.  What would you neighbors think if you took Madame LaZonga to court?

Madame is a madam. She runs a beauty shop where you can get your nails and other body parts polished. She’s been in business for years.  “Everyone” knows what goes on there.  But so far she has evaded capture. 

There could be reasons the cops look the other way.  Can’t think of what they might be right now, but …

Nevertheless, Madame L is no dummy.  She’s already found other sections of Craigslist in which she can legally drop hints about her business.  The Wessays Research Department may have to mine some data on the subject but it’s a one person department and he disappeared right after issuing that report we mentioned up top.

--Our old pal Sick Rantorum is at it again.  This harebrained scheme of the moment: Teach kiddies CPR so that when the next Nicolas Cruz comes calling the children can revive the dead and injured.  If there’s such a thing as Braineo Resuscitation, someone find Rantorum and if there’s no do-not-resuscitate tattooed, then do not resuscitate.

--Our old pal WestraDamus ® is at it again. He broke his retirement silence to announce that Bolton would not last long in the trump administration because he’s insufficiently hawkish. That said, please remember the ‘Damus’s unfailing failure to predict anything, even the past.

I can't say that my disability has helped my work, but it has allowed me to concentrate on research without having to lecture or sit on boring committees” --Stephen Hawking

I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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© WJR 2018

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