It’s So Money…

The dollar bill that brought down an empire...

The dollar bill that brought down an empire…

tuesday tvNobody is ever going to ever accuse the United States government of being an efficient, cost conscious, common sense organization anytime soon.  Nor will you ever hear anybody claim that it’s easy to get people as a whole to change their long-standing habits… for better or for worse.  For these reasons, the United States continues to be one of the few civilized countries in the world that uses paper currency for its most basic monetary unit.  We have long been, and may forever be a country that has a love affair with the one dollar bill.

squirrel money

Especially if it has a squirrel on it…

There is a very vocal minority in this country who continue to push for common use of a dollar coin for fiscal and environmental benefits… and it isn’t like the government hasn’t tried since the last Peace silver dollar rolled off the mint in 1935…

First came the Eisenhower dollar coin in 1971…

Always bend at the knees when picking up an Eisenhower dollar off the ground.

Always bend at the knees when picking up an Eisenhower dollar off the ground.

But the coin was far too large… over three times the size of the quarter.  You’d need a purse just to carry one of these things around, and then wouldn’t have any room for your tampoons.  We may have liked Ike in the 50’s, but did not particularly care for him on our money… so in 1979, the Mint tried adding a little sex appeal…

Hubba hubba!

Hubba hubba!

The Susan B. Anthony dollar coin replaced the Eisenhower coin and corrected one of its major flaws in that it was entirely too large.  Unfortunately, it did not correct its primary flaw… the fact that it was a fucking dollar coin.  Susan B. circulated about as well as ol’ Ike did… as in to say, it was largely confined to bank vaults and collector’s sets.  The government even tried forcing it into circulation by giving it as change at the post office and other federal institutions… but to no avail.  It’s death knell came from the vending machine industry, who stated in no uncertain terms that it was not about to reconfigure its machines to accept these new dollar coins.

Vending machines attack when you try to feed them anything but quarters, nickels or dimes...

Vending machines attack when you try to feed them anything but quarters, nickels or dimes…

Unfazed by the lack of success of its predecessors, the government tried again with another dollar coin redesign.  This time, they made the coin gold colored and included a different female from American history on its face…

Our casino is over there, Mr. Clark.

Our casino is over there, Mr. Clark.

The Sacagawea “gold” dollar was introduced in 2000, and this time the government was confident it had finally produced a dollar coin that its citizens would actually spend.  It had one thing going for it that its predecessors didn’t… a classic TV ad!

Hey, how could the people of the United States not listen to the advice of the Father of their Country?  George was flat out telling everyone he’d rather spend the dollar coin than the popular piece of paper with his own portrait on it.  And he didn’t look bad for a man who’d been dead for 201 years…

Wait till the British see my new horseless carriage!

Wait till the General Cornwallis sees my new horseless carriage!

Showing the people how much easier and more convenient the dollar coin is to use is a lot like showing people how much better and more productive their lives would be without Facebook.  The commercials were shrugged off as the Mint just having a bad acid trip, and everyone went back to spending their paper Georges.  Not even Mecca, who normally has a stranglehold on the spending habits of Americans, could force people into using the “Sackies” by partnering with the Mint and giving them out as change in the period following the coin’s release….

NO!!!

NO!!!

While Sacagawea dollars continue to be minted to this day, their production has been dramatically reduced due to a complete lack of demand for them.  Simply put, America doesn’t want a dollar coin.  After all, they are very hard to stamp with Where’s George

Would you like some help with that?

Would you like some help with that?

So as proof that not all advertising is effective, bringing George Washington back to life and dropping him into turn of the millennium New York City did not cause us to all rush for the bank and start trading in our wallet full of paper for a pocket full of slugs.  About the only way the government will force people to spend dollar coins is to stop printing the paper dollar altogether, and that’s not going to be happening anytime soon… hell, the outraged population won’t even allow our government to stop minting pennies, which are the biggest waste of money and resources outside of the server that is keeping this blog online…

They'll take my pennies away from me only when they pry them from my cold, dead, arthritis riddled hands!

They’ll take my pennies away from me only when they pry them from my cold, dead, arthritis riddled hands!

So we here at The Nest would like to raid our lock box and dig up the three Sackies we got in change from Mecca the morning they were first given out so that we may honor this noble effort on the part of the US Mint to convert us all over to metal dollars.  While we may continue to kill millions of trees every year just so that we don’t have even more coins to weigh down our deep pockets, at least we can all rest easily knowing that strippers everywhere will continue to be able to perform safely…

Ah... soft and easy, just like me!

Ah… soft and easy, just like me!

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About evilsquirrel13

Bored former 30-something who has nothing better to do with his life than draw cartoon squirrels.
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17 Responses to It’s So Money…

  1. NotAPunkRocker says:

    If they just could have retrofitted drink machines to take “Sackies” (giggle) they would have taken off like wildfire. Instead, we try to put the same dollar bill into a machine, over and over, hoping it takes so that we can get an overpriced sugar rush for work.

  2. markbialczak says:

    In Canada they call their two-dollar coin the Looney. U.S. should, as they say in football, go for two. Then you can write a headline, ESN, that states: U.S. Government Goes Looney.

  3. draliman says:

    I can’t remember if there was much uproar when our pound note got axed. I think they still print them in Scotland but they’re not necessarily legal tender in England and Wales.
    I expect strippers would love it if the dollar bill got axed – people would have to stuff their undies full of fivers instead 🙂

    • I can’t see the hoi polloi of the strip joint crowd parting with fives….

      We do have a two dollar bill that nobody uses as well. The theory is that if a dollar coin ever took off, the two would become the new base standard for paper money… but nobody seems to like either one….

      • draliman says:

        We got a new two pound coin a few years ago. It’s silver-coloured with a thick gold-coloured rim. Maybe it was quite popular because it looks quite flashy.

  4. Twindaddy says:

    Well, if they really wanted to do it all they would have to do is stop making paper bills and make only coins. We wouldn’t have a choice then. our government is kinda stupid.

    • Too many people wanting to get re-elected, and anytime the issue of axing one of our familiar types of money comes up, the public outrage seems to start up in full force…

      But that’s the only way it will happen is if they just up and quit printing the paper…

    • BTW, the last few times I’ve tried to comment on your blog, I don’t think it’s gone through because it keeps saying I’m not logged in. I tried leaving a comment on the Maytag post with no success, but I’m not having any issues commenting anywhere else….

  5. We could try the Israeli solution: Make all the coins out of base metal and aluminum so it’s virtually weightless. And so valueless that the my favorite Israeli saying goes (this sounds better in Hebrew): “If you can hear it fall, it isn’t worth bending over to pick it up.”

  6. In aussie land they just got rid of paper ones and twos and replaced them with coins. Funny thing the 1 is bigger than than the 2. Informative and funny post!

  7. reocochran says:

    I always liked that movie with the funny roles that Eddie Murphy and Dan Akyroid play! It made me laugh out loud! I also, in a strange way, must comment that the image of the voluptuous woman with money filled me with envy in two ways: rich and has boobs! Smiles, Robin

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