Prisons

The Keys To Anamosa State Penitentiary Are for Sale…

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…or rather, were for sale, on eBay. Longtime reason reader Mark Lambert ("something like 20 plus years" by his count) sends along news of a most unusual auction on eBay:

Keys to the Anamosa State Penitentiary are for sale on the Internet site, prompting a change of locks at the eastern Iowa prison.

The keys belonged to a locksmith who retired from the prison in 1974. He died two years later and when his wife died last year, an auctioneer was hired to sell off the estate, which included the keys.

Someone bought the keys and put them on eBay. The person who is selling keys claim some still work….

[Warden Jerry] Burt said some locks at the maximum-security prison have been changed since 1974 while others haven't, prompting the recent change.

More here.

The keys are no longer listed at eBay, though you can pick up a copy of Anamosa State's handbook for inmates for $2.

Question: Is this Internet tubes thing a powerful force for decentralizing and democratizing power, or is just sending us to hell in a handbasket (via slow-motion auctions and stuff sent via first class U.S. mail)?

And when are the keys to the nuclear football going to show up on eBay?

NEXT: And Then When They're Trapped in the DMV, We'll Lock the Doors and Set It On Fire

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  1. Is this Internet tubes thing a powerful force for decentralizing and democratizing power, or is just sending us to hell in a handbasket (via slow-motion auctions and stuff sent via first class U.S. mail)?

    The former.

    And when are the keys to the nuclear football going to show up on eBay?

    As soon as David Corn, or similar, gets a job dealing with launch codes in the White House.

  2. Seems to me that if you’re going to work that hard to get into a prison, you should at least do something involving a half dozen hookers, a few 8 balls and beating the shit out of your least favorite nanny-stater.

  3. Is this Internet tubes thing a powerful force for decentralizing and democratizing power, or is just sending us to hell in a handbasket (via slow-motion auctions and stuff sent via first class U.S. mail)?

    The Internet does remain the one Federal Government program that Reason Online remains curiously unwilling to state should have never happened.

  4. The Internet does remain the one Federal Government program that Reason Online remains curiously unwilling to state should have never happened.

    Dang man, that’s like the “gotcha” of All Time! I got another one for ya: I hear that some Reason staffers drive cars — on roads built by the Government!!!

  5. Dang man, that’s like the “gotcha” of All Time! I got another one for ya: I hear that some Reason staffers drive cars — on roads built by the Government!!!

    I’m also very fond of pointing out that the bios of almost all the Reason staffers tell us that they live not in small-government paradises like Idaho and Montanta but rather in places like DC, LA, and NYC.

    You know, those awful places full of government and rules and taxes.

  6. Dang man, that’s like the “gotcha” of All Time! I got another one for ya: I hear that some Reason staffers drive cars — on roads built by the Government!!!

    Well, roads are an enumerated federal power.

  7. Thanks Dan. I’ll have to take the blog posts here with a grain of salt now that I know the reason writers won’t advocate anarchy ad nauseum. Ya’ know, for a magazine called Reason….

  8. Oh, yeah. I remember the ARPANET. It was that cool network that we mere undergraduate Computer Science students couldn’t get an account on.

  9. “Well, roads are an enumerated federal power.”

    Post Roads.

  10. Yes, Mad Max and your point is?

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