My newest two cents worth: Proposed Penny Executive Order. Legislation probably not needed

January 27th, 2009 by Al Lewis (alewis)

All that is needed is an Executive Order.  Couldn’t be simpler: “Businesses which round down cash transactions to the nearest nickel may refuse to handle pennies.”

No objection from consumer advocates because it’s a clear win for consumers. The zinc lobby can’t “block” it because there is nothing to block. It’s an option, not a mandate. The free market will take care of the rest.

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5 Responses to “My newest two cents worth: Proposed Penny Executive Order. Legislation probably not needed”

  1. tomjoyer Says:

    In Canada they recently did away with pennies and no one seems to mind

  2. undergrad Says:

    where is the opposition? What is the argument against this?

  3. alewis Says:

    Opposition? I will be very disappointed if the zinc mining bosses don’t send their goons either to beat us up, or at a minimum to write scathing letters to the editor. They might even pay off the police force to look the other way while they are working us over. Now I know how Joe Hill must have felt.

  4. baronefan Says:

    Michael Barone thinks you’re totally cool. That means I think you’re totally cool. Someone told me we import the zinc we make the pennies out of — is this true?

  5. alewis Says:

    We do import 2/3 of our zinc. It would shock even this jaded government-watcher if pennies were made out of imported zinc. Still, since there is only a certain amount of zinc in the US, what gets used for pennies can’t get used elsewhere, which means someone is importing zinc instead of using domestic supplies because there simply isn’t enough domestic zinc to go around.

    Just because it’s not imported doesn’t make it OK. Zinc mining — mining of any type — is about the worst thing you can do to the environment relative to the value which gets created from the activity. Would you take your nail and scratch a big hole where your skin should be? No? Well, that’s what mining is. Look at Butte, Montana. Still has a big hole in it and they haven’t mined anything there for years.

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