Sunday, March 9, 2014

Down with DST and the Nickel!

          Down with DST and the Nickel!

          Once again it is Daylight Savings Time. Once again we ‘spring forward’ an hour in the Spring, meaning that we call 6 AM darkness 7 AM. Once again we inflict artificial jetlag on the entire country, with predictable bad effects on health and productivity.
          I am not the only one to complain:
          Abolish Daylight Savings Time!

But I have said this many times before. This time I add to my hobbyhorse another demand; abolish the cent and the nickel.
          The one cent coin is more expensive to make than it is worth, and useless to spend. Many people have suggested eliminating the cent, and rounding all costs to the nearest 5 cents.
But 5 cents is also hard to spend. Some machines will accept nickels, but what individual items do you know that you can get for 5 cents? So I suggest that we eliminate cent and nickel, and drop the last decimal on all prices. We’d need to retire the quarter too, and mint many more 50-cent coins. Dollar coins too.
          This has the advantage of simplicity. The base unit is upped by a factor of ten. The disadvantage is that it is an admission of defeat by the forces of inflation. A money denoted in vanishing decimal places is ipso facto dubious; an aplutic admission! 

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