October 9th, 2003


State Quarters

I've been collecting the State Quarters since they started the program in 1999. I got some of those books that you can put the quarters in and display them. It's pretty neat. Well, 2003 is the half-way point on this project and I'll have to pull out the second book to start collecting the quarters next year. In looking at my collection so far, however, I notice a huge gap in my ability to find quarters minted in Denver. That's not terribly surprising, since I live on the East Coast. Most of the coins that pass through my hands were minted in Philidelphia. Most of the Denver-minted quarters I have were quarters I collected when I visited California several years ago.

Perhaps someone on the West Coast is reading this and is trying to find quarters minted in Philidelphia. Maybe we can work something out. I'd be more than happy to try and find Philidelphia-minted quarters that would help complete someone's collection, especially if they can help me find Denver-minted ones.

Here's a list of the Denver-minted quarters I'm missing:

1999: none
2000: South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia
2001: New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island, Vermont
2002: Tennessee, Louisiana, Mississippi
2003: Illinois, Alabama, Maine, Missouri, Arkansas

OK, it's not surprising that I don't have Arkansas, since I don't think it's in circulation yet. If anyone out there can help fill in my gap, please get in touch with me and we can swap addresses.

If you don't know what I'm talking about regarding the differences between coins minted in Denver and Philidelphia, you might enjoy reading about Mint Marks and the anatomy of a coin. I've always thought coinage was pretty cool. The U. S. Mint website has lots and lots of really intersting information.

[Update: I found a Denver-minted Virginia State Quarter in the soda machine today! 10/10/2003]

[Update: hapy2beso set me up with a lot of the missing Denver quarters I needed! 10/23/2003]

Arnold Wants A Baghdad Deal For California

Since I haven't said anything about the California recall election in my LiveJournal and it's already come and gone, I guess now is the perfect time to bring it up.

First, I note that I did my civic duty on Tuesday and voted. There were no lines at my polling location and I was able to go right up and vote. I looked and looked all over the ballot, but couldn't find anything about Arnold anywhere. I was a little disappointed, because it was only on Monday that I realized that I was eligible to vote in the election. It turns out, however, that only the people who actually live in California were allowed to vote on the whole Arnold thing. Oh, well. There was one local issue for me to vote on as well as getting to cast my vote for the mayor, three council at-large seats, and the council seat for my district (all primaries, of course). Turns out that I voted in the minority in every case. At least the at-large candidates for whom I voted still advance to the general election. My choice for mayor doesn't even get to advance.

So, even though I didn't get to have a say about Arnold, it seems that a lot of people did. I ran across a somewhat humorous commentary at forbes.com about Arnold's near-term plans for dealing with the California budget crisis. It seems as though Arnold is planning on applying for federal aid.


Schwarzenegger, a Republican, said he would appeal to the White House directly for federal aid, hopefully meeting with President George W. Bush when he travels through California for fundraisers on his way to Asia next week....

It's a swell idea. After all, California and Iraq both are seeking new direction after sudden recalls of unpopular regimes. But there are a few problems.

First, the fact that President Bush will be raising money in the state--something he is unlikely to do in, say, Al Kut, anytime soon--suggests that California is still a rich state that might be expected to pay its own way. While the Golden State is simpatico with Iraq in the sense that both have suffered power outages and both are sometimes said to be the size of California (California, as it happens, is exactly the size of California), that's about as far as it goes. With the federal budget also in deficit and California not actually having been invaded, it might get less aid than it would receive in an ideal world.

I especially enjoyed the observation that "California, as it happens, is exactly the size of California." Read the rest of the commentary for more chuckles.

Regardless of the humor in this piece, I do find it somewhat disturbing that Arnold appears to be planning on seeking a federal bail-out. I won't be surprised when he gets it, either. Our federal government has a long history of bailing out organizations that refuse to have the discipline to take care of themselves. That's right, our federal government is simply one large, bloated enabler. Used to, you could tell the conservatives from the liberals because the conservatives wanted to stop that and the liberals wanted to keep it going. Not so much anymore. More and more, so called "conservatives" are looking to make the federal government bigger.

It's a disturbing trend.