5 WTF Real Jobs That Allow You To Commit Legal Crimes
You may be asked to do all sorts of strange, debasing things at your job: talking to customers without swearing, not taking swings at the HR manager, or most perverse of all, singing "Happy Birthday" to Gary from Accounting. And somehow, it's entirely legal for your boss to demand you participate in such base atrocities. But those are not the weirdest things people have been asked to do for work. For example ...
You Could Taste-Test Drugs At UK Musical Festivals
Having a drug tester set up shop right at the entrance of a music festival seems like a good way to ensure a boring music festival. But not if it's Fiona Measham and her organization, Loop. They don't give a good goddamn about testing you for drugs. Instead, they test your drugs for you. To make sure they're good enough. We know what you're thinking, and somehow this is not a front for a needlessly elaborate sting operation.
"Good news: It's clean. Bad news: You definitely overpaid for this shit."
Loop knows that people are going to use drugs, and figures that someone should make sure they're not going to die from it, because the government sure as hell isn't going to. In 2015, a record 3,674 drug deaths were recorded in the country.
Though Loop boldly asks drug users to walk right up to them and hand them some drugs to test, they somehow manage to duck under the long arm of the law. How do they pull that off? By skipping the feds and negotiating with local authorities and police directly, who are far more likely to acknowledge the reality of drug use. (We assume that Measham's other gig as Professor of Criminology at Durham University doesn't exactly hurt when making her case.) That's how Loop reached a live and let live agreement with cops presiding over music festivals, and no one seems too keen to violate that treaty. In 2017, Loop has tents in up to ten major festivals around the country, and it's growing. There's only one vital question left unanswered here: Do they make house calls?
You Could Be A Legal Contract Killer In The Phillipines
The president of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, has a plan to rid his country of its drug problem: trying to kill everyone who has ever been in the general vicinity of narcotic substances. It's not a great plan. He can't personally shoot every drug user and dealer in the country, no matter how badly he wants to, so he's turned to a Hollywood cliche for help: hitmen for hire.
During the first seven months of Duterte's presidency, Amnesty International estimated up to 7,000 drug killings in the country, around 2,500 of which were done by actual policemen. How accurate those numbers are is anyone's guess, but they still leave thousands of victims unaccounted for. Enter Duterte's sanctioned contract killers. These are usually poor, desperate people like "Maria," a diminutive young woman who says she's personally killed six people as a part of a three-woman assassin group, or "ACE" and "Sheila," a husband-and-wife team who claim a whopping 800 killings. All of them say they're financed by law enforcement and get their orders directly from high-ranking police officers.
"It's a living. Uh, for us ... them, not so much ..."
After they get a call, ACE and Sheila say they generally have to adhere to a three-day deadline, and if they can, leave cards with the text "PUSHER" on the bodies -- because the job just wouldn't be evil enough without a goddamned supervillain calling card. Sometimes the hit requires creativity; Sheila recounts jobs wherein she had to masquerade as a club dancer to get close to the target. A successful hit nets the killer a prize of up to $430, and then they go back on the waiting list -- because they can never stop, not unless they want to become targets themselves.
Your Boss Might Order You To Rob Your Own Place Of Employment
When a car company wants to crash-test a car, they crash it. When an airplane company wants to test the durability of a jet engine, they try to break it. When a bank wants to test security ...
Yeah, you guessed it.
In 2016, an employee of the Greensboro, NC branch of BB&T was opening up when a masked man approached, pointed a gun at him, and generally went through all the motions of an extremely efficient robbery. The employee tried to alert the police with the handheld alarm device he was carrying, but to his growing horror, no one responded. This incident turned out to be a robbery drill designed for another branch of the bank. The robber was a teller from that bank, and the cops were in on the joke. The employee hadn't been informed for the sake of authenticity.
Later that same year, two sisters aged six and 11 had their day thoroughly ruined when they were shopping in a H&M in Dublin. A man training the staff had chosen that day to stage a fake robbery, and the pair ended up hiding in a changing room with their mother, fearing for their lives as the fake robber screamed threats and demands.
The idea behind these mock robberies is sound: Banks and stores do get robbed for real, and it's good to know how you'd perform in such a situation (and maybe receive some pointers from the professionals on how not to poop your pants in quite so visible a fashion). In practice, however, mock robberies almost always wind up with a ski-mask-wearing middle manager scaring the shit out of entry-level store employees and nobody learning anything.
As you can probably guess, both BB&T and H&M were promptly slapped with lawsuits. In another case from 2007, a masked gunman fake-robbed a New Jersey pharmacy so hard that the victim got diagnosed with PTSD. Not that the situation is always safe for the "robbers," either. In 2011, another pharmacy in West Kern Water District, CA managed to thoroughly traumatize a poor employee with their mock robbery. The "robber" in that case was the company's quality control manager, who was hesitant to put on his ski mask because he was afraid that the cops would arrive and shoot him. He was ultimately coerced into the role by a supervisor setting up the exercise. The supervisor, incidentally, hadn't managed to inform the police about the drill, leading to a situation wherein a guy who didn't want to play a robber fake-robbed a woman who didn't know the robbery was fake, while the police could have stormed in at any moment and shot the "robber," whose biggest fear about the exercise was getting shot by the police. Those are near-lethal levels of irony.
You Could Help People Kill Themselves In Switzerland
At the Dignitas clinic in Switzerland, they deal in private assisted suicide, guaranteeing that you die with dignity, and ... that's it. As long as a Dignitas customer has a suitable reason to die and a sufficient amount of money in their wallet, Dignitas doesn't give a good goddamn about anything else.
How do they get away with it? The explanation is stated on the clinic's own webpage: According to the Swiss Constitution, "Anyone who helps someone to commit suicide, providing they are not acting out of selfish motives, cannot be punished."
The key term there is "selfish motives," and the site has that covered. "Selfish motives" would be, for example, if through assisting in a suicide, someone could inherit assets earlier or would get rid of a financial obligation of support. Yet the fact that someone receives a normal financial compensation for assistance with suicide cannot fulfill that definition.
Dignitas' spin on "dignified death" takes time, and there are procedures to follow. First, you need to sign up as a member on their website, which will cost you around $210. This and an annual $85 membership fee will keep you on the list until it's time to call it quits, at which point you send a letter clarifying why you can't take this shit anymore, complete with medical records to prove it (cost:$2,430). After that, you come to Switzerland to pay for two meet-ups with doctors ($810). Finally, another $2,430 allows you into the death ceremony, which isn't exactly a posh affair: The Dignitas clinic is just another plain old building, where you go to pick an "apartment" ...
... then inject yourself with a deadly cocktail (since the Swiss law doesn't allow the clinic staff to actively partake in the process). With trips and accommodation, you've just paid a five-figure sum to overdose in a crappy motel room. Admittedly, this is an improvement: Before 2009, when Dignitas couldn't find suitable premises (they're not a popular neighbor), they were forced to operate out of actual hotel rooms, which was so depressing that some customers opted to die in their own cars.
If that sounds decidedly inglamorous, well ... that's kind of the point. Dignitas does know what it's doing. The whole process is designed to weed out whim suicides. Whether you regard it as a simple money-making machine or an organization genuinely interested in helping people, the people flocking to the place couldn't care less. Between 1998 and 2014 alone, Dignitas assisted a total of 273 UK citizens and 920 Germans on their final journeys.
You Could Collect Massive Amounts Of Information On People And Then Sell It To The Highest Bidder
You know your online data is being sold, but that, by necessity, means someone is actively selling it. We don't stop to consider that part. They're called data brokers, and data is what they ... broke. Everything they can get a hold of, from your online activities and traceable financial transactions to phone records, government information, and even medical files. Sometimes they just straight-up buy it from companies you've been dealing with. Sometimes they're less straightforward: Before the internet, they sneakily went through peoples' magazine subscriptions and public records, quietly ticking boxes. "What kind of car do they drive? How many pet tarantulas do they have? Would they notice if we fed them one when they're asleep?"
As technology marched on, the categories they put us into became far more specific. The largest broker, Acxiom, boasts "Over 3,000 propensities for nearly every U.S. consumer." And that's just the one company. It's fair to assume that pretty much everyone's out there in some data broker's files, neatly arranged in folders by any metric you can think of. Data Broker company MEDbase 200 retails freaking lists of rape victims, at 7.9 cents per name.
Way back in 2007, a data broker company named infoUSA peddled huge lists of elderly people, ranging from "Opportunity seekers" to "Suffering seniors" (people dealing with serious illnesses) to "Oldies but goodies" (gamblers over 55). The names should've clued you in that these lists did not have the best intentions. They were specifically designed for telemarketers and fraudsters. One flat-out said: "These people are gullible. They want to believe that their luck can change."
If you suddenly get a discount coupon from a diaper company, that's because a data broker sold your diaper fetish. Or maybe you have a baby. We're not here to judge. If that ad for Viagra seemed to arrive a little too conveniently, well ...
"If you want to bone, you also gotta get boned."
In 2011, a subsidiary of data broker / credit monitoring giant Experian unwittingly sold the personal information of an estimated 200 million Americans -- Social Security numbers and all -- to a Vietnamese man, who then resold the information to over a thousand cybercriminals all over the world. The information was accessed over three million times, and Experian didn't even notice until the Secret Service tactfully nudged them and pointed out the situation.
As for the accountability of data brokers, well, there's basically none. Although the industry does have (voluntary) guidelines on how their information is used, and some companies like Acxiom give you the chance to opt out of their marketing products and request certain reports about yourself, they don't really seem to give a shit about government officials. The Federal Trade Commission, which is supposed to watch this kind of thing, freely admits that they have no idea how many data brokers even exist. When a Senate committee investigated the industry in 2013 and asked the biggest data broker companies to disclose their sources and clients, the brokers presumably pointed out exactly what kinds of lists the good Senators themselves were on, because absolutely nothing came of it.
For more things you can do to pay for your Candy Crush addiction, check out 4 'Slacker' Jobs That Actually Pay Amazingly Well and 5 Horrifying Jobs That Almost Make You Prefer Unemployment.
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