Tear Down This Mint, Mr President

January 22nd, 2009 by Al Lewis (alewis)

It does not appear that allowing businesses which “round down” cash purchases to refuse to accept pennies even requires an Act of Congress.  It is part of what the Treasury Department is authorized to do under existing legislation.  Further there is no negative budget implication so there is no need for a review by the Congressional Budget Office.  It can be done by the Executive Branch alone.  We are therefore One Signature Away from the end of the tyranny of the zinc lobby.

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3 Responses to “Tear Down This Mint, Mr President”

  1. alewis Says:

    If Emerson were alive and kicking today in Concord and could watch his fellow citizens stand up to tyranny the way they stood up to the Redcoats, he would write:

    To the rude lobbyists who corrupted good
    Congressmen to support their zinc
    Here the embattled merchants stood
    and said, “We think your pennies stink.”

  2. historybuff Says:

    Tear down this mint, Mr. Obama? I get it. There should be a million-dollar prize for getting all the historical references

  3. kara Says:

    Wow!! I went to undergrad at Ohio Wesleyan University in Delaware, Ohio. Sandusky Street, the main thoroughfare, runs right through the middle of campus, separating the academic buildings from the library and residence halls. Students, including me, routinely ignored the “don’t walk” signs in a rush to get to class. The “townie” police took great delight in tracking us down – evening running and following students into class – to give us jaywalking tickets, most of which were less than $5. I finally had it. I got a ticket and went and collected pennies from myself and all my friends to $4.99. I went to the court and paid the fine with a pile of pennies which then had to be counted. Of course, it was short, to which I said “no, I’m sure I had it right” and required re-counting. After this charade went on 2x (of course, the university press was there – I was actually on the student government and ran for President), I finally made a show of trying to scrounge up the last penny. After this, everyone else did the same. The hassle factor was so high, the University president intervened and the townie police eventually gave up, hopefully focusing on the real crimes like murder and mayhem.

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