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Forcing the use of Sacs and Halves--the argument continues

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I don't mean to offend any of you loyal Sac and JFK half collectors...but a letter to editor in latest Coin World has me spinning up. The guy basically said that Sacs should be forced into the system...Fed making banks taking them as part of their cash reserves. Kinda ties into the whole idea of doing away with the paper dollar.

 

Dare I speak heresy...but we have to remember that the MAIN purpose of business strike coinage is commerce. It's my opinion that the "normal" (read non-collecting) American society is now a paper money society (and even that's going away with debit cards and the like). We/they just do not want a dollar coin for commerce purposes...and to force them on us either by extorting the banking system or doing away with the dollar bill just ain't right. Even REAL silver dollars, with few exceptions, were not desired for use in daily commerce once the dollar bill got on step.

 

Sacs are reasonably attractive in mint and proof sets...but I sure don't want them to spend. Every time I get one, it immediately ends up in the church collection plate or a tip to a bartender who ends up looking at me funny.

 

Sadly...I must say the same thing about the half dollar coin. Now I've got my full set of Walkers which give me endless pleasure looking at...and I know there's a loyal JFK collector base...but ask yourself....when's the last time you used one in commerce without deliberately setting out to do so ???

 

Okay...I'll shut up now....I needed to vent. blush.gif

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Actually, my opinion is that the only thing that limits the dollar coins from circulating is the continued use of the $1 note. By continuing the use of paper currency in this denomination, there is no need for a $1 coin.

 

And since paper currency costs more to manufacture because of lifespan, the Federal Reserve should discontinue its use.

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It's funny, you can probably get a great deal of people to agree with you from this thin slice of humanity - the collector community. Dollar coins and half dollars don't circulate except in particular circumstances (e.g., the transportation industry with the dollar coins). We all know that the coin will not circulate alongside the note as long as there is a note. It's a no-brainer. As for the half, it's simply too big. Nobody wants a coin of that size in their pocket, except as a worry stone. The same was largely true of silver dollars. But the Mint has a political agenda, not a practical one. (Okay, people want a lot of quarters because of their practicality). If the Mint was practical, and could negotiate change (pun intended) with the vending markets, we'd have a completely revamped coinage in no time flat. Just look at the relative sizes of coins... does it make any sense given the fact that our coinage is completely debased in value? It's absurd. But reason will rarely, if ever, enter the politics of money. confused.gif

 

Hoot

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Amen about reason and politics making for strange bedfellows.

 

Both Britain and Canada have done a great job of removing the lowest circulating paper money and instituting reasonable sized coins in their stead. Is the paper currency missed? Not a chance - and with inflation eating into the value of our money the dollar is becoming an anachronism anyway.

 

Hell, we can't even get rid of the same dead-heads on the coins we have had for too long, how are we going to retire currency?

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  • Member: Seasoned Veteran

One of the reasons that Sacs don't circulate is that the Federal Reserve won't segregate them from Anthony Dollars. When a bank orders dollar coins, they get large numbers of Anthony Dollars mixed in that no one will take. Until the Treasury agrees to withdraw these pests, no one will order dollar coins.

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The banks never ordered the SBA's either. It's a virtual certainty that the fed could spend millions to separate these and billions to destroy the SBA's and the banks still won't order them. Before they were mixed with the older dollars the banks didn't order the sacs. Banker say they won't use the sacs unless they are already circulating.

 

The obsolete coinage system in this country costs many of millions of dollars in handling and production costs and billions in lost sales. If forcing the banks to use the better alternative is the only way then it should be done.

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Bankers won't order them without demand. Merchants won't order them from the banks without having customers use them. And the public won't use them as long as the $1 bill is available.

 

The government has the power to change the situation, but because it is too narrow-minded, won't fix the situation.

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It is not known if the public will use them because the banks won't hand them out. Most banks will not even give you one when you request it. How can they circulate unless the fed forces the banks to distribute them?

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cladking,

 

Go to Canada. The public threre readily uses $1 and $2 coins, because the notes of those denominations have been removed from ciruclation. If you give the consumer no choice, they WILL do what you want.

 

Think about it, if you pulled the $1 bill and $2 bill from circulation, as a consumer, would you prefer $4 in change as 4 Sacs/SBAs, 8 Kennedys, or 16 state quarters. What makes the most sense?

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When I go to a bank I ask for Kennedys and $2 bills. Most people like them as tips or small purchases more than a dollar bill that is torn and filthy and looks like a laboratory experiment gone estray. Some bills above $2 I don't even want to touch from across the room but to quit printing them would mean less man hours for the BEP so it won't happen anytime soon.

I used to ask for SAC rolls until they started mixing in SBA's. The SAC had a small chance until that misguided attempt to rid the vaults of a coin that failed 20 years ago.

 

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Now I've got my full set of Walkers which give me endless pleasure looking at...

 

Cool! I just finished my set last week. Not a great collection (lots of early Goods) but satisfying none-the-less.

 

I think the Sacs are an attractive coin but I certainly wouldn't want to lug them around to pay for lunch for instance.

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Look at Europe (and the rest of the world), they did away with small notes years ago. I do not know what the denominations of the smallest bills in Europe are now. However, I bet that you do not see any notes in circulation below E5.00. Yeah, you do carry around more big coins, but the the coins work in all the parking garages and vending machines, or for tipping waiters. tongue.gif

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No doubt they will work if thrust upon us by pulling the dollar bill..just as the loonies and toonies do in Canada.

 

I guess another underlying theme that chafes me about them is the choice of subject matter. Yes, SBA and Sacagewea did play notable parts in American history, but I dare say not to the impact of Lincoln, Jefferson, Roosevelt, Washington...and even Kennedy and our old friend Ben Franklin...(okay, SBA maybe, what with pushing the vote for women...but it's just a butt ugly coin).

 

If we were to force the dollar coin on the American public, then I would say that the Sac design should be removed and replaced with whatever the accepted theme of American coinage is going to be...presidents, an allegorical Liberty, whatever.

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I read the same article and thought the concept of forcing people to use coins over paper currency is just plain silly. As a collector of Halves and Dollars I do love the looks of the Kennedy Half and Sac Dollar. That being said, to lug a bunch of Dollar coins around in my pocket is a pain in the butt. It is much easier to stick a dozen one dollar bills in my wallet than it is to stick a dozen one dollar coins in my pocket. I am reminded of this every time I go to the post office to buy stamps from the machine and only have twenties in my wallet.

 

Personal opinion aside, coin collectors are but a small portion of this countries population. While many coin collectors seem to prefer coins to currency in commerce (at least the most vocal). It appears to me that most of the people seem to prefer the use of paper. Therefore, it would seem reasonable to accommodate the majority of the people (although it usually does not operate that way) rather than the minority despite there more vocal stance.

 

This is just my opinion and is subject to change when presented with facts in a reasonable debate.

 

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Good point, David. I did not realize that they were mixed with SBA's. The Reserve is trying to lower their Seigniorage of SBA's. Good trick, if they could pull it off! tongue.gif

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Robert,

 

Your point about having to lug around a dozen dollar coins is odd considering most Americns know how to carry around ONE ten-dollar note and TWO one-dollar coins. And, each dollar coin is approximate in size to the quarter-dollar coin.

 

Your point about the majority of the country wanting paper currency has a whole different side to it. The paper industry -- the specific makers of the special paper -- is I think one single company which has a lot of clout in its state. Their congressmen use political means to keep the one-dollar notes around.

 

If we threw out the one-dollar note and started using the dollar coin, then we can save the U.S. Government a lot of money in not having to wash the notes every few years and replacing badly worn notes. Coinage lasts MUCH longer than paper currency.

 

This savings, btw, translates to tax-payer money!

 

EVP

 

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