Pay our hookers in bills, eh


Rufus F.

Rufus is an American curmudgeon in Canada. He has a PhD in History, sings in a garage rock band, and does many things. He is the author of the forthcoming book "The Paris Bureau" from Dio Press (early 2021).

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25 Responses

  1. Avatar Tod Kelly says:

    I know that there are actual reasons for stuff like this.  But there’s something about these kinds of decisions that feel like having Andy Rooney dictate policy.Report

    • This is an interesting comment. Listening to talking heads (not to mention just reading Facebook comments), it is the pro-penny side that is far more in the Andy Rooney realm. There’s lots of fear-mongering, irrational anger, conspiracy theories and general curmudgeonous.

      The anti-penny side (excluding politicians) tend to be far more reasonable, relying on studies, reason and un-emotional analysis (at least from what I have encountered).Report

      • Avatar Pierre Corneille in reply to Jonathan McLeod says:

        My impression of the Andy Roony (r.i.p.) take would be this:  he’d talk about how the word “penny” begins with the letter “p” and how he can’t understand why the lower-case version of some letters don’t resemble the upper-case version the way the letter “p” does.  After about 3 or 4 minutes of this, the show would be over.Report

  2. Avatar Will H. says:

    Coin collector here.
    I have an Australian penny and an Israeli one, both discontinued.
    I already have a few Canadian ones, so that will make three discontinued pennies.
    The US just came out with a redesigned penny, so I don’t think it’s going away anytime soon, although it does make sense that it should do so.
    From what I’ve read, Canada also has a statute prohibiting purchases with more than 25 pennies at one time. We need that one here, but unfortunately, neither party has added this as a plank.Report

    • It’s my understanding, that the 25 pennies rule is a myth. If I recall correctly, the law is more vague, stating that shopkeepers don’t have to accept an unreasonable amount of coins – but it’s been a while since I’ve been in retail.Report

  3. Avatar Patrick Cahalan says:


  4. Avatar Trumwill says:

    I actually have been pondering a post wondering if it would be possible for an individual state to “abolish the penny.” The word “abolish” meant in a looser context: Basically, require that all vendors within the state price things to the nearest nickel (after tax). Pennies would still be valid currency and all, but would stop being necessary.Report

  5. Avatar James K says:

    Once they’ve made the transition I doubt they’ll miss it.  We no longer have anything smaller than 10 cents.Report

  6. Avatar Katherine says:

    I’m not really opposed to it, but it seems weird to have amounts of money that can’t be physically represented by our currency. For anything that comes out to $19.97, or $8.14, or whatever – the price will be meaningless, because it’s physically impossible to pay that amount without the penny.

    My guess is that it will be good on the whole, though, not because the penny’s expensive to make (I doubt it makes any significant dent in the budget), but because everything will get incrementally cheaper as retailers downgrade costs from $x.99 to $x.95.Report

    • Avatar Will Truman in reply to Katherine says:

      It’s not unlike gasoline, though, which it’s 9/10 tag at the end. You just round up. Or down. The only place you’re likely to see the .99 to .95 are states without sales taxes. Otherwise, it won’t really matter. Unless we require vendors to include sales taxes in posted prices.Report

      • Avatar Katherine in reply to Will Truman says:

        We do not, in fact, have ‘states’.Report

        • Avatar Will Truman in reply to Katherine says:

          Oh, I forgot you were up there. Does Canada do the 9/10 at the end of gasoline prices (if not, you’ll get used to it)? Are sales taxes a part of the listed price (if something is $1.99, is it $1.99 or $1.99 plus tax)?Report

          • Avatar Katherine in reply to Will Truman says:

            Yes, the gas stations list the price to one digit beyond one cent.  Most places don’t include sales taxes in the listed prices, but the actual prices also don’t typically round to the nearest $0.05.Report

          • Avatar Katherine in reply to Will Truman says:

            Oh, and everywhere has sales taxes.  Alberta may not have a provincial one, but everyone pays the federal sales tax (GST/HST).  It’s how we afford public health care.Report

            • Avatar Will Truman in reply to Katherine says:

              I get the sense that if we ever have a national sales tax down here, it will be included in the listed price.

              Will the prices in Canada have to be rounded to the nearest 5c? I figured that it would work like the 9/10. The price can be whatever, but only has to be paid to the nearest five cents.Report

              • Avatar Kazzy in reply to Will Truman says:

                I greatly prefer when tax is included in the sale price.  Just makes things so much easier.  I don’t know that it should be required, but I personally would prefer to see it more often.Report

              • Avatar Will Truman in reply to Kazzy says:

                I would want it included in the event of a national sales tax. With local and state sales taxes, it’s a little more complicated. If you sell a magazine, for instance, the price will then be different in different states and even different counties. We can say “Oh, well the operator of the magazine rack ought to include the tax-included price,” but it would make things complicated. The ability to advertise a single price is an economic plus and is lost with different taxical add-ons here and there and everywhere.

                But if the tax is uniform, then by all means it should be included. I might support making it mandatory.Report

              • Avatar Katherine in reply to Will Truman says:

                Will the prices in Canada have to be rounded to the nearest 5c? 

                I think that’s how it’s going to work, yes.Report

    • Avatar James K in reply to Katherine says:

      Not necessarily, you still get prices marked in less than 10c increments in New Zealand.  If you’re paying with EFTPOS or credit card you pay the listed prices, if you’re paying cash the bill gets rounded to the nearest 10c.  The notion your currency is defined by your coinage is archaic.Report