Friday, January 06, 2012




  1. I had some guy come into my store once and try to buy five gallons of interior enamel paint for two 1880 silver dollars. The deal works value for value but if I take the SD's to a bank or corporate-based store they'll only exchange them for $2 paper Washingtons. Therein lies the problem with such exchanges.

  2. Which is why I would have just left the bank or corporation out of the deal. Why trade with someone you know is going to cheat you in that situation?

    You could have traded those silver dollars with someone else who knew the value- or held onto them for a rainy day. I will ALWAYS accept (and greatly prefer) silver or gold instead of FRNs. No exception. A while back I sold something worth around $5 for 2 pre-'65 dimes. And was happy with the trade.

    But, speaking of banks... I once heard of someone who deposited their collection of silver dollars into their bank account instead of putting them in the safe deposit box, which was what they intended to do. They got a credit of one FRN per silver dollar, and I'm guessing some bank employee got a huge bonus. Carelessness has a price.

  3. Some years ago I made up a few different posters for my blog similar to yours above to illustrate the differences between constitutionally mandated "sound" money and Federal Reserve "funny" money. Although I've stopped writing the blog it's still online. If your interested, the posters are available for free here and the blog is at Our American Money.

  4. Thomas- Very nice posters! Thanks.

    Those go into a lot more detail than mine.

    I also made one contrasting a real dollar with the brass tokens that are passed off as "dollar coins" now. Perhaps I should edit the post and add that one too.

  5. Kent-

    You're welcome on the posters. Feel free to use them in any way you see fit.

    And I do like your old post. It's true that money can exist apart from government and the earliest forms of money did. Even the earliest coins (from Lydia) may have been issued by wealthy individuals rather than by the seems no one knows for sure. The whole idea behind the U.S. government issuing coinage was ostensibly to guarantee the fineness and weight...and hence the value. We all know how well that worked out. Or, rather, didn't!

    I only wish more people would look to themselves and their fellows instead of running to the government for every perceived need.

    Anyway, best wishes and keep up the good work.

  6. You might think that I chumped myself here but if the guy wants paint he has to pay with FRNs. I am not gonna take his SDs down to the pawn shop or jewelry store and get the cash for them. That's his responsibility. I have to pay my rent, taxes, suppliers, and put food on my table and my landlord, the city gov, and vendors etc. won't take SD's for the value of 1 oz. of silver they'll only take the nominal fiat value (i.e., $2). By the time I get the SD's converted and put the funds back in the till I've probably lost money with all the time lost for such a small transaction. Now if he would have come to me first,or wanted to buy a few thousand gallons of paint with SDs then I would likely have done it for him. And it would be the same if he came in with Euros, Canadian $, or some gold nuggets. But I just can't do business that way. I am a reality based libertarian

  7. KenK- Nope, I don't think you chumped yourself at all. I think trading for something you don't want is the only mistake. If you prefer to deal in FRNs then no one has any business criticizing or second-guessing your choice.

    I was just telling you what I prefer. And, in contrast to what you were saying, I would be more likely to balk at silver dollars for a huge sale than for a smaller one, since it is more likely in that case I'd have to quickly trade them for FRNs to pay to someone else who wants only FRNs. I haven't ever had to face that decision yet.

    Back when I had a store, I had a sign posted near the register saying I accepted, and preferred, silver and gold in payment. I had a lot of people ask about that sign, but I can't remember anyone ever paying that way.

    (Oh, and silver dollars aren't an ounce of silver anyway, but only slightly over 3/4 oz. A dollar is defined as a bit over .77 oz of silver, if I'm not mistaken.)

    I think we may, in our lifetimes, see a situation where there may be no "only" accepted form of money. You may be able to choose (or may be forced to choose) between paying in (or accepting in trade) FRNs (or whatever the next government money may be), Euros (ditto), metals, or local currency. Maybe there will still be a default money even, but there may not be.

  8. Haha, I like your posters. Keep up the good work.