A proposal to phase out the $1 bill and replace it with a $1 coin could be gaining currency as the “supercommittee” looks to find ways to save the government money.
I think this is doable but it requires a few things to get over Americans’ crippling fear of change:
- Rip the band-aid off, stop printing singles, don’t do any amount of phasing out. If you do it marginally people will reject them, if they’re forced to adapt they will.
- Make sure the coins are extremely clearly labelled, make sure there is no way they could be confused with any other coin (without making them gold, no one but pirates likes gold coins). Maybe make one side Teddy Roosevelt (or some other previously unused president) and the other side is just a big ass ($1)!
- Find a way to finagle sales tax so that more things cost $1-3 evenly. I think a big part of why people avoid dollar coins is they’re dealing with enough pocket change as it is. I know it’s kinda pathetic but one of my favorite parts of traveling in Eurozone countries is buying shit like cheeseburgers for 3 Euro without getting 8-9 coins back.
- Find a way to incentivize early adopters, maybe off-set the prices to get companies to offer 10-20% discounts if using coins for the first couple months.
- And most importantly adapt all vending machines! All of ‘em!
Also, we don’t need pennies. My Dads a coin dealer and he says the same thing. DOWN WITH $1 BILLS! ROCK ON, DOLLAR COINS!!