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Keller @ Large: Ditch The Dollar Bill? No Way

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(Photo credit RODRIGO ARANGUA/AFP/Getty Images)

(Photo credit RODRIGO ARANGUA/AFP/Getty Images)

WBZ-TV's Jon Keller Jon Keller
Jon Keller is WBZ-TV News' Political Analyst, and his "Keller A...
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BOSTON (CBS) – I think we can probably all agree that, considering our mushrooming debt and deficit, we’d like to see government find less expensive ways of doing business.

Listen to Jon’s commentary:

So I want to commend the Obama administration for seeking permission from Congress to change the metal composition of pennies and nickels, a move that could save a couple of hundred million.

Did you know it costs the government almost two-and-a-half cents to make each penny and more than eleven cents to make a nickel? I didn’t, and I’m appalled.

It might be cheaper to make them out of chocolate, not to mention tastier.

But savings or no, I have to draw the line at another recent government proposal. They want to ditch the dollar bill, and start producing dollar coins only.

According to a CNN report, it costs the U.S. Mint only about 30 cents to make a one-dollar coin that lasts up to 30 years. A paper dollar only costs a nickel to make, but its lifespan is less than five years. They estimate they could save the taxpayers more than $4 billion by making the switch.

I say, no way.

Almost overnight, that fancy money clip you inherited from your grandfather would be useless. Every vending machine in America would have to be retooled.

What would become of all the laughs you can get at parties by folding your dollar into interesting designs?

American slang would be stripped of some great euphemisms, like greenback, bankroll, lettuce and folding green. No more peeling off a few singles from your wad to pay off a bet or subsidize your kid’s date; donors would no longer be able to palm a roll to their favorite candidate.

What are we going to do, all walk around with about 15 pounds of dollar coins clanking in our pockets?

Most women’s purses are heavy enough as it is.

No, Uncle Sam better keep his paws off our dollar bills.

After all, that’s what got us in trouble in the first place.

You can listen to Keller At Large on WBZ News Radio every weekday at 7:55 a.m. and 12:25 p.m. You can also watch Jon on WBZ-TV News.

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