The one pence rip off. How shops and the State collude to screw us.

18 Nov

3:30PM 18 November 2012 Nunhead Heights

I spotted a stack of pennies and two pence pieces an inch thick on a brick wall outside my corner shop in Nunhead Heights, the increasingly in-demand area of London.

I counted 11 pence – that’s maybe 17 USA cents.

This wasn’t lost money. This was litter. Someone had freed himself of the burden of carrying around that metal.

When money becomes rubbish it isn’t money anymore.

Why does the government continue to coin one pence, two pence, five pence and possibly even ten pence coins, when people can’t buy anything with them and they get in our way?

99p pricing, or even 95p pricing, is aimed to convince us that things cost less than they really do to get us to buy more.

The majority of these coins will never, ever be exchanged for for larger denominations – they just rot in drawers and bowls.

And if you care about the lower classes, and I don’t being one of them, well, the lower classes shop more often than richer folk and the rich’s single-weekly-shopping at Waitrose. The poor get more pennies at the corner shop. Penny coinage is a regressive form of taxation.

It eats at me every time I go shopping. I wrote about this last April.

And not to mention the millions of hours a year society wastes in counting the coins and attempting to have these coins redeemed. What could we be doing with those hours?

Vestigial coinage is an age-old problem. Once there were half-pennies and farthings, and who knows what else, all thrown in the rubbish bin of inflation. All coins eventually get taken out of circulation but now there are four coins which are harming our people.

Anyway, I thought about picking up the stack. I didn’t do it.

When a broke man like me turns down a stack of coins, you know those coins have got to go.

@lewisschaffer – twitter feed 

Listen to Lewis Schaffer on the Radio Nunhead American Radio with Lewis Schaffer every Monday evening at 10:30PM on www.resonancefm.com and 104.4fm London. Or listen to the show’s podcasts at bit.ly/NunheadAmericanRadio 

See Lewis Schaffer live every Tuesday and Wednesday: Lewis Schaffer is Free until Famous, The Source Below, 11 Lower John Street, London W1F 9TY. Come on down. Free admission. Or reserve at bit.ly/londonfreeshow 

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3 Responses to “The one pence rip off. How shops and the State collude to screw us.”

  1. Andy November 18, 2012 at 4:53 pm #

    Without looking it up………….. Can you tell me the price of a pint of milk, a loaf of bread and 6 eggs from your nearest cheapest store?

    • Lewis Schaffer November 18, 2012 at 6:46 pm #

      £1.40, I don’t usually buy bread, and 1.39.

  2. Andy November 18, 2012 at 10:49 pm #

    Most Supermarkets, the prices are around 49p, 75p and 99p. i.e. 232p. The point here being take care of the pennies and the pounds take care of themselves (unless you leave the pounds unattended in a suitcase)

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Lewis Schaffer

Nunhead American Comedian

John Fleming's blog - SO IT GOES

John Fleming’s blog: human interest, humour, humor, comedy blog featuring eccentricity, performance, movies and occasionally a few tears

Nunhead Nags

A blog about Nunhead regeneration

Lewis Schaffer

Nunhead American Comic

Lewis Schaffer

Nunhead American Comedian

John Fleming's blog - SO IT GOES

John Fleming’s blog: human interest, humour, humor, comedy blog featuring eccentricity, performance, movies and occasionally a few tears

Nunhead Nags

A blog about Nunhead regeneration

Lewis Schaffer

Nunhead American Comic

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