by Raymond Alexander Kukkee
Canadians are penniless. The Government of Canada has declared that Canadians, in 2013 and beyond, should all be legally penniless. Imagine that.
The Canadian penny is no more. The last penny was officially minted in Winnipeg, Manitoba, on March 04, 2012. Conservative Finance Minister Jim Flaherty was on hand, and displayed the “last penny” with white-gloved hands, smiling at Canadians as if he did us a favor. Let’s see….
Sure, there are billions of them in existence, plastic slotted teddy-bears and piggy-banks full of them, every kid has a handful somewhere. No longer. They cost 1.6 cents to make, since they are 94 %steel, 1.5 % Nickel, and only 4.5 % copper-plating –or previously, copper-plated zinc. No longer do ‘coppers’ exist, after being produced first in 1858. We are officially penniless.
The cost to produce pennies is 1.6 cents each, worth repeating. Keep that in mind, it adds up to about $5 million dollars a year. Let’s feel good and save $5million for Canadians. Yep.
No longer will they be produced by the Royal Canadian Mint in Winnipeg, but the ‘official’ Mint gift shop sells penny ‘cufflinks’ now for $44.95 a pair. How lovely. Rolls of ‘collector pennies’ for outrageous prices. Doesn’t that just about figure? ….but I digress...that’s my two cent’s worth.
Meantime, out in the REAL world of shoppers, big money and profit, as a matter of being fair to consumers, and now being tossed like a penny into a wish-pond, –in the world of retail without pennies, retailers are “supposed to round down” to the nearest nickel or dime. For example, something costing $0.92 should be ’rounded down’ to $0.90 and the same item costing $0.93 should be ’rounded up’ to $0.95. Fair enough in principle. Fair enough in the government’s Alice in Wonderland devious Cheshire cat world.
Let’s see how it works out in the real world.
Off to McDonald’s I go, now being a penniless Canadian. The medium coffee with double cream is innocently priced at $1.42, which should be “rounded down” to $1.40, – but because there is also 7 cents tax on coffee, the price totals ….yep….. $1.49.
Time for the government
ripoff “ roundup”.
I shelled out $1.50. A buck and two quarters………….. “Ching-ching” goes the cash-register, since retailers are no longer giving customers pennies back, either-— McDonald’s gets richer, while I get poorer.
How convenient. McDonald’s gets the extra penny by ’rounding up’, even though their price has been set to look as though it should be rounded down, but no. Appearance is everything, so it seems. Let’s play “corporation blame the government.”
Howls of derision and raucous laughter.
The use of the addition of the V.A.T. (value added tax, i.e. sales tax) to manipulate prices conveniently offers big business yet another way to look innocent while they
screw and gouge the consumer ‘do business and make profit’.
Bottom line, in our exceptionally simple example, when McDonald’s sells 5,000,000 cups of coffee, they will have collected an additional $50,000.00 — in windfall profit.
For the record, I have not seen any purchases “rounded down” yet.
Clearly, with the blessing of the ‘government’, and innocently, without appearing to do so, Corporate Canada can now increase prices once again, or even roll back a penny or two to look good — but with manipulation and careful consideration of sales tax structures can once more, come out with increased profit, taking advantage of penniless Canadians.
with a brain believe any profitable, powerful business is going to ’round down’ their prices to ensure Canadians are not paying more? Did the ‘government’ legislate that prices should now be set to the nearest nickel or dime, as a matter of fairness? Dream on. Are you kidding? No. They left it up to big business so it can be manipulated.
How lovely, No wonder Canadians are penniless.
In spite of the Conservative government ‘ tooting their horns, boasting they are ‘saving Canadians’ $5,000,000.00 a year by NOT minting any more one-cent ‘coppers’, they have removed many, many more millions of dollars from the pockets of consumers now and in years to come— and happily handed it to their friends, Corporate North America.
And yes, it is most likely the USA will follow suit and do the same. . The good old Yankee penny will undoubtedly follow the demise of the Canadian penny into oblivion as Big government and Corporate North America conspire, observing a fabulous windfall opportunity for profit in action when they see it.
One thing is clear, pennies will no longer be in children’s piggybanks as they are siphoned into Corporate Coffers –one cent at a time.
Is that Incoming I hear?
photo credits : ©2013 wlk photography