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  • The story of the penny starts in the first US Mint founded in 1792 which produced these

    便士的故事源自西元1792年所建立的美國第一座鑄幣廠,這座鑄幣廠除了生產

  • one-cent pieces along with other coins including the Quarter, Dime, Half Dime and a mystery

    便士外,還負責25分、一角、半角以及一種神祕的

  • coin that we'll get back to later.

    硬幣,等一下我們會提到。

  • These pennies of the new republic were born of 100% pure copper.

    這些新共和國的一分錢由純銅製成。

  • But, two forces conspired to ensure this wouldn't remain the case for long. The value of copper

    但有兩股力量合力確保這情況不是長久的。銅的價值

  • went up and, because of inflation, the buying power of the penny went down.

    上升,因為通貨膨脹,使得一分錢的購買力下降。

  • This caused The Mint to reduce the amount of copper in pennies, first from 100% to 95%,

    這導致鑄幣廠不得不減少美分硬幣的含銅量 先是從原本的100%降到了95%

  • and then to only 5% copper and 95% zinc.

    到最後的5%銅、95%鋅

  • Despite this debasement, in 2006 the value of the metal in older pennies rose over 1

    儘管用料上一再的貶值 在2006年 用於鑄造一美分的金屬價值仍然超過了一美分

  • cent and suddenly they were worth more dead than alive so people melted them to sell the

    突然之間 美分作為硬幣的價值反而不如其原料的價值

  • raw copper for profit.

    人們開始鎔掉一美分硬幣 出售提煉出的銅來賺取利潤

  • In a rational, efficient world, the story of the penny would have ended here with the

    在一個理性的 追求效率的世界裡 政府會理解到不值得採礦鑄造出一美分的事實

  • Government realizing that they weren't worth Minting and happy that its citizens were removing

    並為人們將一美分移除於金錢循環感到欣慰

  • them from circulation.

    便士(一美分)的故事原應終結於此

  • But, instead the Government made melting U. S. coins illegal and continues to manufacture

    然而政府卻倒行逆施 讓擅自鎔解美國硬幣成為違法行為

  • 4 million pennies each year.

    並持續每年生產四百萬枚美分硬幣

  • Which is idiotic as it costs the US Mint about 1.8 cents to make a each 1 cent penny.

    在鑄造一枚美分硬幣需要花1.8美分的情況下 這種政策簡直是愚不可及

  • But, even if pennies were minted from something more representative of their true value -- like

    但是就算使用更能體現一美分價值的材料 像是用塑膠或是棉絮來製造一美分硬幣

  • plastic or lint -- it wouldn't fix the fundamental problem that pennies are bad for people and

    也無法解決一美分硬幣對人們有害無益的根本問題

  • the economy.

    抑或是對經濟而言。

  • Here's why:

    讓我告訴你為什麼

  • The purpose of physical, cash money is to make it easy to transact the everyday business

    實體現金貨幣的目的在於 滿足日常生活交易之所需

  • of buying stuff.

    像是買東西

  • A shopkeeper has stuff and you want that stuff. Rather than bartering like savages for it,

    店主有商品 你想要那個商品 與其像個野蠻人般以物易物

  • you use cash as a medium of exchange.

    你可以用現金作為交易的媒介

  • To get the price just right the cash must be divisible into pieces so that you don't

    為了付對正確的金額 現金要能夠被分割

  • overpay.

    這樣你才不會付過頭

  • But it isn't divided forever, because at some point the value it represents is too small

    但又不須無盡地分割 因為當現金被分割到一個地步之後

  • to buy anything or bother with. Which brings us back to the penny.

    所代表的價值會小到不能買任何東西 這又帶我們回到了便士的問題了

  • In the olden days, pennies could actually buy stuff, no more. Now, if you want to spend

    在古早時候 一美分真的可以買東西 但好景不常

  • pennies, you're going to have to put in some effort.

    現在你若想要用美分來付錢 你可得花上一番功夫

  • For example, try to pay for 20 bucks worth of groceries with 2,000 pennies weighing 11

    打個比方 你可以試試看去超市消費20美元的食品雜貨 再用2000枚重約5公斤的美分硬幣來付款

  • pounds and see how that works out.

    看看會怎麼樣

  • So you have to get rid of them by using exact change.

    想要擺脫一美分硬幣的話只得找正確的零錢來付帳

  • But, because the United States doesn't include sales tax in prices -- unlike more civilized

    但是由於美國不像其他文明開化的國家一樣 將消費稅包含在價格內

  • countries -- and you can't multiply by 8.875% in your head, you can't get your change ready

    你也沒辦法在腦中把價格乘上8.875%

  • before you reach the register like a good Samaritan would.

    結果就是你沒辦法像個好撒馬利亞人般 在輪到你之前就準備好零錢

  • The pennies you inevitably fiddle with after discovering the true cost of your goods add

    當你知道採購所做的花費後,你不得不為準備掏出零錢奮戰

  • two seconds to each cash transaction on average which is less than the value of your time,

    在交易上這平均多花了兩秒鐘,低於你時間的寶貴價值。

  • and the time of everyone behind you, which is why most normal people don't bother messing

    和隊伍中人們的時間,這就是為什麼正常人根本懶得

  • with change and the usual penny-counting culprits are those with nothing better to occupy their

    處理零錢,而那些愛掏出零錢,浪費大家時間的罪人們

  • day.

    多半是那些整天閒閒沒事幹的人

  • If you want to spend pennies without being an inconsiderate jerk who wastes other peoples'

    如果想消耗零錢 卻又不想成為浪費他人時間 不為別人找想的渾蛋

  • time perhaps you can find a machine that will accept them.

    或許你可以找些會吃一美分硬幣的機器

  • Good luck with that. Vending machines won't take pennies, neither laundry machines or

    找的到你就試試看啊 販賣機不會收一美分 不僅是販賣機不收一美分

  • toll booths or parking meters or anything else -- because pennies aren't worth the time

    洗衣機 收費站 停車收費機 和各種其他的機器 通通都不收一美分硬幣

  • and effort to count, store and transport them.

    因為一美分硬幣不值得去點數 儲藏 跟運輸

  • In fact there is only one machine that takes pennies: Coinstar -- a leach on the economy

    不過實際上有一種機器收一美分硬幣 那就是硬幣之星

  • that eats 10% of your money while providing nothing in return except the ability to spend

    你得讓這個機器無故吃掉10%你的錢

  • cash that was already yours.

    就只為了能夠把原本就屬於你的錢拿去花

  • The difficulty of spending pennies is why they end up in jars, dead to the economy after

    花費美分的難度也解釋為何它們會被丟在罐子裡

  • a short, useless life where they failed at their only job, to facilitate exchange and

    經過一段短暫而無用的生命週期 這些美分無法達到它們唯一的任務 ─ 促進交易流通

  • instead did the exact opposite by being a literal dead weight on every cash transaction.

    美分成為了名副其實的現金交易累贅

  • They must be eliminated.

    因此 它們必須被移除於現金流動圈之外

  • But, you might think, won't prices rise and charities lose money without the penny?

    但你可能會想 如果美分移除之後 會不會導致價格上升 慈善機構也失去它們的善款來源之一?

  • No.

    答案是不會的

  • New Zealand got rid of their 1 cent coin, as did Oz. Finland and the Netherlands ditched

    紐西蘭跟澳大利亞都屏除了他們的一分錢硬幣

  • the 1 euro cent coin as well. Though that might have been because of how absurdly small

    芬蘭與荷蘭也拋棄了一歐分硬幣

  • and frustrating 1 euro cent is.

    不過這大概與一歐分硬幣這種小到誇張的尺寸也有些關係

  • These countries round to the nearest 5 cents for cash transactions and none of them saw

    這些國家現金交易的計價手法是四捨五入到五分錢

  • prices rise or charitable donations drop.

    而這些國家無一經歷了物價的上漲或是善款捐獻的下跌

  • And anyway, the United States has already gone through this process before without trouble.

    而且其實美國也早就有安然度過這類程序的經驗

  • Remember the mystery coin from the beginning? That was the half-cent. Seen one lately? Of

    還記得影片一開始我提到的神祕硬幣嗎? 我指的就是半分錢

  • course you haven't. It was discontinued in 1857 for being worth too little.

    你最近有看過半分硬幣嗎? 當然不可能 因為半美分硬幣在1857年就因為幣值過小而停產

  • But when the half-cent met its fate, it had more buying power than today's dime so perhaps

    但是當半分硬幣除役時 它擁有比一角錢更高的購買力

  • the list of modern coins to kill could even be larger.

    所以或許這份貨幣終結名單應該還要再大一些

  • There is one last, irrational problem with getting rid of the penny.

    若要拋棄一美分硬幣 還有一項不理性的問題需要解決

  • Everybody loves Lincoln -- well almost everyone. After booting off Lady Liberty and the Chief,

    那就是所有人都愛林肯─好吧可能不是所有人。在剔除自由女神和酋長後,

  • the US sure has Lincoln-ified the penny within an inch of its life.

    美國不留餘力地將林肯的每寸生命都放在一分錢上

  • But ditching the penny won't erase him from history.

    但是屏除美分並不會將林肯於歷史中抹除

  • Lincoln, and his monument, are still on the 5 dollar bill which isn't going away.

    林肯與他的紀念堂 仍常駐於五塊錢鈔票上 哪兒也跑不了

  • And, even if you think it's unpatriotic or disrespectful to retire Presidential coinage,

    倘若你認為停止使用上面有總統的硬幣 是不愛國或是不敬的行為

  • allow me to direct you to a little organization known as the United States Military.

    請容我告訴你 有一個小小的單位稱作美軍

  • Where, in overseas bases, they've already abolished the penny by automatically rounding

    藉由價格四捨五入到五分錢的方式

  • to the nearest five cents.

    美國海外軍事基地廢除了一美分硬幣的使用

  • Sooner or later even the most ardent Lincoln lovers will have to give up the penny: they

    遲早就算是最熱切的林肯擁護者也會放棄一美分硬幣

  • cost more to make than they're worth, they waste peoples' time, they don't work as money,

    一美分硬幣的生產成本大於價值、浪費人們的時間、不具備貨幣的功能

  • and because of inflation they're less valuable every year making all the other problems worse.

    而且由於通貨膨脹 一美分硬幣的價值是每況愈下 上述的問題只會越來越嚴重

  • Sorry Abe, but it's time to kill the penny.

    抱歉了林肯 不過該是我們與便士說再見的時刻了

The story of the penny starts in the first US Mint founded in 1792 which produced these

便士的故事源自西元1792年所建立的美國第一座鑄幣廠,這座鑄幣廠除了生產

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B1 中級 中文 美分 硬幣 零錢 林肯 現金 價值

便士之死(Death to Pennies)

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    Why Why 發佈於 2013 年 04 月 06 日
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