Dollars and Cents

While touring the Smithsonian Institution in 1905, President Theodore Roosevelt marveled at the ancient Greek coinage on display and realized American coinage seemed so “bland” compared to the coinage of the ancient Greeks. Roosevelt dubbed our nation’s coins “artistically of atrocious hideousness.” The beauty of classic coins inspired his decision to launch new designs for the entire range of U.S. coinage.

Roosevelt felt that coins were more than the metal they contained. He believed that they must reflect a nation’s greatness. By 1905, America had grown to become the most powerful nation on earth, with the Great White Fleet of Admiral Dewey.

The world circumnavigation cruise of the Great White Fleet truly ushered in the “American Century.”

Roosevelt wanted to see coin designs that would reflect America’s pre-eminent status, and celebrate the beauty of our heritage of Western Civilization.

It is rather ironic that a president who did so much for conservation, beauty, and our national prestige in coin manufacture, is not found on any of our coins.

There has been a continual effort by the United States Mint to foist a dollar coin onto the American public–which does not want it. This fact has been made evident by the wholesale public rejection of the Eisenhower, Susan B. Anthony, and Sacagawea dollar coins. What more must we do to show our displeasure; throw them into Boston Harbor?

The Sacagawea “gold dollar” in particular, is a real piece of trash, for if one leaves it near a kitchen or bathroom sink, it turns an ugly mottled brown color. In addition, the Shoshone woman is depicted to look more like a Peruvian potato picker, than a Native American.

The reverse of the design is satisfactory, however.

Another piece of crap coin is the current Lincoln cent, which has been with us since 1982, when all copper was removed , and a cheap substitute of copper coated zinc was introduced. They contain 97.6% zinc and 2.4% copper, These coins corrode into what looks like battery acid deposits, once they draw any moisture. Some of them don’t even last a year. These cheap substitutes now cost about 2.7 cents to manufacture, and are simply not cost effective. Their impermanence reflects badly on the immortality of a great nation. Our national prestige will suffer as a result, with the symbolism of the declining dollar, being reflected in our cheap substitute, debased coinage.

Now the U.S. Mint has elected to provide the public with the dubious bestowal of yet another new dollar coin program, which will depict presidents of the United States and their spouses.

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