Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Liberian Dubya Bush Coins

I got an offer in the mail to buy these commemorative George W. Bush $10 coins.

If you look at the top of the obverse coin, it says “Republic Of…”, with the remainder of the logo being obscured by the other coin.

I thought to myself, “Republic of Texas,” his home state? No. Look closer at the banner at the bottom of the obverse side. It says “Republic Of Liberia.”

So why would the United States be issuing Liberian currency with Bush’s image on them?

The mystery deepens. The literature says to visit Well, that’s not the same as, the official web site of the United States Mint. The same mint that issues the currency that United States citizens use in daily transactions, not to mention much of the free world.

So I go to, and there it is again; the same coins with the same Republic Of Liberia inscription. And there’s a gold $10 Dubya Bush coin, but with a different design, and again, with the same Republic Of Liberia inscription.

Why would the president even authorize such a coin? A coin not even produced by the United States Mint, and not even in honor of the United States Government?

I decided to find out what I could about Liberia. I have an old 1992 Information Please Almanac. In the section on nations of the world, I found some basic information. It’s located on the southwestern corner of western Africa, next to Ivory Coast. It’s comparable in size to Tennessee. It was established in 1822 as a settlement for freed American slaves. Its 1988 per capita income was $395. Its principal products are rubber, rice, palm oil, cassava, coffee and cocoa. In 1980 there was an uprising by native Liberians against corruption and misrule by the Americo-Liberians who had ruled the country since its founding.

So the question remains, why does Dubya Bush allow someone other than the US Mint to issue coins with his image in the name of an African nation descended from freed American slaves? I can only speculate. American imperialist expansion? Political self-aggrandizement? Maybe Dubya Bush has some financial stake in, and is doing this for profit. Maybe, all of the above.

I don’t know, Davey. I just don’t know.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Why? To make money for the government of Liberia. No affiliation with GWB I'm sure -- the Liberian gov't issues scads of commemorative stamps and coins.