Congressional Republican economy terrorists have been holding the country hostage for a while now—Sequester! Fiscal Cliff! Debt Ceiling! Meet All Our Crazypants Demands or We’ll Blame Obama!—and people who don’t enjoy negotiating with terrorists have been looking for a way around dealing with them. How can we keep paying our bills if there’s no money in the bank? Well, one obvious way would be to print some more money.
Technically, the Government can’t print more money, but the Federal Reserve can. (They are not the same thing and if you don’t know this, that is because you are not a nutbucket conspiracy theorist like me. Most normal people do not know how the Fed works.) BUT: Back in 2011, a Constitutional law professor at Yale started talking about an idea to take advantage of the one way in which the Government can mint more money: commemorative coins! The Secretary of the Treasury is allowed (31 USC § 5112!) to strike platinum coins in any denomination. So all the Secretary of the Treasury has to do is to mint two one-trillion-dollar platinum coins, deposit them with the Federal Reserve, and hey presto! It’s all good. (And go to hell, Repubican economy terrorists.)
The trillion-dollar-coin idea started being talked up again a couple months ago, as the Sequester approached, and it was even endorsed by some Celebrity Economists, but in the end Jacob Lew was confirmed as the new Secretary of the Treasury and even if he tried to issue The Coin, no one can read his handwriting and the Treasury would probably just issue a couple of platinum Slinkys instead.
Still, I do believe we could apply the trillion-dollar-coin principle to raising money to support WFMU. When Former Cohost Jay and I decided to produce our own Thunk Tank currency (the Bieb, the official currency of Iceland!) we discovered that it is illegal for anyone but the Government to issue specie (coins), but anyone can issue paper money. (So we did.) Why should we continue with the annual Marathon and the Record Fair and the Secret Off-Air October fundraiser and the Superstorm Sandy Wrecked the Station Special Appeal and Station Manager Ken in a Lawn Chair Attached to Weather Balloons, going back to the Listeners for their support again and again, just because we’re a Listener-Supported station? (And God bless the Listeners, they have been fantastic!)
All Station Manager Ken has to do is issue a 1-milion Bieb note (which trades at a rate of 1 Bieb to 1 US dollar), deposit the note in the WFMU bank account, and then pay all our bills! (Or just deposit 10,000 100-Bieb notes, because I think there are plenty of them lying around the station from Thunk Tank’s overproduced Marathon premiums.) Assuming the bank that has the WFMU bank account will accept it for deposit, which maybe they will not.
Alas, the one- trillion-dollar coin is not to be. The main problem seems to have been that it would have called attention to the fact that our entire economy is based on the fiction of fiat currency and debt. So I will never be able to add the Biden Commemorative $1 trillion dubloon to my collection, and I also still have never got a Guam quarter, either, so what’s up with that? You can still use your Federal Reserve-issued currency to support WFMU, though, so go to wfmu.org and make your pledge now.
Thanks for reading my blogpost this time, and thanks for supporting WFMU.