US Currency: was, was, was, Re: French liaisons (was something else)
|Douglas Koller, Latin & French <latinfrench@...>
|Tuesday, February 10, 2004, 21:55
>On Sat, Feb 07, 2004 at 11:33:16PM -0500, Tristan McLeay wrote:
>> Incidentally, I personally think we should get rid of 5c coins.
>Over here, we would first have to get rid of pennies.
My understanding is that Australia has managed to do so, but I don't
see how it'd work here as long as we have weird percentage sales
taxes and people willing to buy things for 99¢ but not for $1.
Personally, I don't mind pennies. It may be a bit anal, but I try to
make exact change throughout the day and then put remaining pennies
in a jar at home. In two months, you can buy yourself a nice
sandwich. Besides, many smaller stores have the "leave a penny, take
a penny" dish next to the register. So, no big whoop.
Then Padraic writes:
>There is a relatively large movement in the US to
>overhaul the system along those lines. Namely, to
>be rid of the penny and dollar note at least.
>Many would like be rid of the nickel for similar
>reasons; and some would like to follow Canada's
>lead and introduce a US twoonie.
I certainly wouldn't mind; it's very convenient in cultures that use
them. But we tried that a while back with the Jefferson two-dollar
bill and it was an abysmal failure (they're now probably collectors'
items -- I may have one in an old piggy bank somewhere). At the time
of their demise, some speculated that it was because of the
expression "as phoney as a two-dollar bill", and that may well have
been a factor, but I suspect unfamiliarity and, as someone else
mentioned, inertia figured in.
Then in a post from Nik:
>"Ph. D." wrote:
>> The US Mint has issued a dollar coin (the one with
>> the native American woman on it). No one uses
>> them except the machines at the post office when
>> giving change. The fact that no one likes them is
>> why the US Mint has not gone ahead and removed
>> the paper dollar.
Well, there used to be the Eisenhower "silver" dollar which was
yawing into obsolescence even when I was a kid (wasn't there a
"buffalo" dollar before that? -- a bit before my time). You collected
them. Since I've returned to the States, I've amassed two or three
'cause, and I'm amazed, store owners have given them to me as change.
I horde those puppies like wheat pennies. I would've thought that if
any dollar coin had a shot at it, it would've been that one, because
it was a different size. But like the Kennedy half-dollar, it didn't
Then there was the Susan B. Anthony dollar, doomed from the start
since it was too close in size and weight to the quarter.
And now the Native American woman one. I only see them when I take
the subway into Boston, so they go straight from the change machine
into the meter on the train. I may have *one* at home. Like the SBA,
it feels in your pocket like a quarter, but at least it's a different
color, which the SBA was not. I'm willing to have a go with it, but I
don't see it in other venues.
>*I* like them, but I never get them. Besides, what's it matter whether
>people like them or not? If they stopped making paper dollars, people
>would have to use the dollar coin pretty quick.
As with the penny, I don't mind dollar bills. Again, I try to make
exact change through the day, and if you happen to have accumulated
too many in your wallet, you can always pay for something entirely in
ones. Gas stations and convenience stores, I've found, often welcome
that since most customers fob off tens and twenties, and sometimes
even fifties, leaving their register drawer bone-dry. Coexistenece of
the coin and the bill would work for me, but more coins have to get
out in general currency.