Thursday, February 18, 2010

Craziest Republican of the Day: Mike Pitts

South Carolina will no longer recognize U.S. currency as legal tender, if State Rep. Mike Pitts has his way.

Pitts, a fourth-term Republican from Laurens, introduced legislation earlier this month that would ban what he calls "the unconstitutional substitution of Federal Reserve Notes for silver and gold coin" in South Carolina.

If the bill were to become law, South Carolina would no longer accept or use anything other than silver and gold coins as a form of payment for any debt, meaning paper money would be out in the Palmetto State.

Pitts said the intent of the bill is to give South Carolina the ability to "function through gold and silver coinage" and give the state a "base of currency" in the event of a complete implosion of the U.S. economic system.

This is clearly insane, just as the proposed law would be clearly unconstitutional. Indeed, the whole think is just... impossible. Here's our friend Libby Spencer, who knows a think or two about South Carolina, given how close she is to it:

Forget about the legality, think about the practical aspects of this idea. How does Mr. Pitts suggest they make the transition? I'm assuming most people don't have gold and silver bars stashed in their junk drawer. How are they going to pay their electric bill. Haul some gold coins down to local office? Can't send a check because checking systems run on federally insured paper. How do they make change at the convenience store? Meaning just how big is one dollar's worth of gold by weight? And think of the fun the out of state tourists will have at Myrtle Beach, trying to find an exchange kiosk for their US dollars, that aren't legal tender in the state.

In a way I hope they go through with it. Any state that would re-elect this fool four times, deserves to go under, as they surely would if this hare-brained scheme actually became law.

And it's always nice when Republicans show us just how truly retrograde they really are. Generally, though, they prefer the 1950s, not the 1750s, which makes this all the more crazy.

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