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Quote of the week: Radley Balko

From Reason: “For nearly a century before the Internet put the anonymous consumption of vices literally at the world’s fingertips, vending machines dispensed taboo wares, experiences, and entertainment...

“For nearly a century before the Internet put the anonymous consumption of vices literally at the world’s fingertips, vending machines dispensed taboo wares, experiences, and entertainment free from the gaze of prying eyes. The first vending machines in wide use were the snuff and tobacco boxes in 17th-century English taverns, appropriate forerunners to the ubiquitous, plastic-handled cigarette dispensers that populated bars, bowling allies, and restaurants in the second half of the 20th century. Be it the condom machine in the gas station bathroom, the coin-operated peep show, the pinball craze that prompted a moral panic in the 1940s, truant hoods spending afternoons in smoke-blanketed video-game arcades in the 1980s, or the rebellious rock ’n’ roll–dispensing jukebox, there has always been a subversive element to coin-operated commerce.”Radley Balko in Reason

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