At current prices, gold is well over $1500 per ounce. You would not need more than a pocketful of one-ounce coins to buy any reasonable car.
I expect that our laws meant to prevent crime, specifically the war on drugs used by poor black and brown people, would still require tons of paperwork if you used more than $10K worth of coin to buy anything.
Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:Ok fine. How about a house? .
And that's pure gold. They dilute it with other things for coins, right?
Depends where the house is. In NYC or LA, not a chance. But in parts of Utah, sure.
Modern gold coins are made to have exactly one proper ounce of gold, they weigh a bit more for the other metals. You are right in that pure gold is too soft to be a coin. Most folks who have gold coins have what are called "bullion coins" like the Canadian Maple Leaf, Krugerrand, etc. You really would not want to put them in your pocket with your keys and iPhone. You would not want to take a chance that the keys would scratch the coins and remove some of the gold metal. Its much to expensive these days to take a chance that you could knock off some value. Unlike common coins, (US quarter, Canadian Looney, etc.) which are worth exactly what the government says, no matter how worn they are, bullion coins are worth only what the gold is worth.
A common reason for governments to produce coins is to make a profit on the difference between the cost of production (including the cost of the metal -- or plastic) and the face value of the coin. (It's called "seigniorage".) But it sounds like that wouldn't apply in this case.
Pat Farrell wrote:
I expect that our laws meant to prevent crime, specifically the war on drugs used by poor black and brown people,....
What are you questioning here? That laws are intended to stop/prevent crime? OR that the US War on Drugs ignores the drugs that cause the most damage to society, focusing on drugs used by smaller sections of society. That the US current laws, especially the sentencing laws, are in fact heavily biased against folks with black and brown skin is well proven.
Its been the US law for at least a decade that it is not legal to use large amounts of cash for purchases. Well, perhaps not technically illegal, in practice there are huge amounts of paperwork and bureaucracy if you try to use more than $10,000 in cash.
There have been tons of coverage on the topic of "mandatory minimum" sentencing. There was even an episode of The West Wing where this was a key topic. "Mandatory Minimums" Original Airdate 05-03-00 R
The minimum jail time for possession of crack cocaine is the same as the time for possession of ten times as much power cocaine. Power cocaine was the drug of choice for rich white folks, see Miami Vice or former Virginia Governor Chuck Robb. Crack Cocaine, which is the exact same drug, is the drug of the poor, who are often brown or black.
The most dangerous drug in the US is tobacco. Its legal. Used for hundreds of years by white people. The second most dangerous drug is alcohol. Used for thousands of years, and sold on TV to white people. Its not about potential damage, or even realized damage, its about political power.