So you got yourself one of those widely advertised Obama coins from Franklin Mint that’s covered in 24-carat gold and depicts the president-elect. With it came a “certificate of authenticity,” signed by the 36th director of the U.S. Mint, Jay W. Johnson. The good news: The coin, priced at $9.95, has guaranteed monetary value.

The bad: That guaranteed value is only 50 cents.

Also, although Johnson is a real person, he hasn’t been director of the U.S. Mint since 2001. And your total cost is more than double the advertised $9.95. Confusion over Obama commemorative coins — issued not only by Franklin Mint but also several other private companies — has become so widespread that the U.S. Mint has issued an alert. “These items are not official United States Mint products,” says the statement. The coins from Franklin Mint are real Kennedy half dollars upon which an image of the president-elect is superimposed. But the U.S. Mint wants you to know, in no uncertain terms, that the agency had nothing to do with the altering or marketing. Its statement continues: “Furthermore, these products, businesses and advertisements are not approved, endorsed, sponsored or authorized by the United States Mint, the Department of the Treasury or the United States government.”

Tsk Tsk…

  1. BigBoyBC says:

    Amazon is selling Obama coffee (McCain too), Obama chia-pets, and all sorts of crapola.

    I understand he’e the first African-American President, that’s all well and good, but some of this stuff seems to border on “icons of worship” and that’s scarry.

    He’s just a man, the higher he’s elevated, the farther and harder he will fall. That’s not fair to us or him.

  2. Paddy-O says:

    In short they aren’t collectible coins. They medallions.

  3. BadSteveO says:

    If Montel endorses it, it’s gotta be good. I’m ordering mine now!

  4. Somebody_Else says:

    Anyone who falls for TV ads is retarded to begin with.

  5. whaap says:

    The coins look like garbage in the commercials. And they are garbage just as expected. I bet plenty of fools still bite.

  6. The Warden says:

    It’s only right that the mind numb Obamabots be taken. Hell, Obama swindled them so why not these other jive hucksters?

  7. Ron Larson says:

    A friend of mine in central Asia sent me a copy of an email that is going around the world. A scammer is trying to convince people that Obama has decided to celebrate his inauguration by having a special USA green-card visa lottery. They claim that he authorized 10k special greencards just for the occasion. Anyhow, the email makes it sounds like it is official (except the address to accept your green card winning), like this is something US presidents do whenever they feel good.

    My friend asked me if it was real. I had to tell her no, it was a scam. Still, I wonder how many desperate people this email suckered in.

  8. Carcarius says:

    So it isn’t against the law to alter money? I know that selling it at a value higher than it is worth isn’t necessarily wrong (caveat emptor). They are taking old coins, altering them and selling them so why can’t I melt down my pennies and sell the valuable copper?

  9. LotsaLuck says:

    I believe that it’s illegal to represent a living person on legal tender and postage stamps produced by the U.S. government.

    It’s NOT illegal for other countries to produce them, though.

    Many smallish nations, though, have somewhat of an industry making coins and stamps of living (and some dead) politicians and celebrities.

    Seems like some Caribbean countries are famous for this…

  10. jccalhoun says:

    All of these “collectibles” are a scam. Nothing that advertises itself as collectible is actually worth anything…

    The worst offender in regards to these coins is National Collectors Mint who sold that terrible “Freedom Tower Silver Dollars” and the 9/11 coin with “real silver recovered from the site of the World Trade Center.” They went so far as to have a deal with Northern Mariana Islands — who aren’t allowed to make their own money since they are technically part of the USA — so they could imply their coins were real money.

  11. GregA says:

    None the less, because of the overwhelmingly historic nature of Obamas presidency, he will almost certainly get his own denomination. He need do nothing else for the remainder of his term to ensure that.

    Coins in that first printing, will absolutely be collectable.


    Sorry if this causes you consternation, naw not really….

  12. Faxon says:

    I had the distinct displeasure of being at the Oakland Oracle Arena, where Obama’s swearing in ceremony was shown to a bunch of teary eyed Oaklanders. I never saw so many tacky, sleazy Obama products. The tee shirts were notable for the gaudiest, ugliest designs imaginable. It took some time for me to decide which one I saw was the ugliest, but most of them had some kind of gold paint and splashy stars or wavy lines all over the place. The Obama crowd, to say the least, does not produce the brightest flame in the matchbox. But it is hard to miss. Wouldn’t the sale of this crap stimulate the economy anyway? Think of all the welfare money going towards this shit.

  13. Lou says:

    No such thing as a gold coin for 10 bucks. Unless gold is going for 40 bucks an ounce.

  14. LinusVP says:

    I would’ve been screwed in the “Dead or Alive” game.

  15. ECA says:

    i pity those that fall for these COIN ADVERTS..
    Allot of these are REAL TENDER in Nigeria and Liberia. Which is valued in the PENNIES in USA currency.

    On a side note..
    The FINE print that is to be DISPLAYED, on TV commercials…I thought there was a LAW they it HAD TO BE readable.. anyone have a 52″ or larger that can READ that print? tell us what it says.

  16. jcd'slovechild says:

    A fool and his money are soon parted.

  17. lens42 says:

    The Franklin Mint has been scamming people for a long long time. This is not new.

  18. BubbaRay says:

    The US Mint does currently (and has in the past) mint collectibles. The State Quarters are worth at least $0.25 each. All foolery aside, a complete BUC set of these is worth some real money, much more than the face value.

    Recently minted silver dollar sets will be worth some extra money as well.

    And proof sets never go out of style.

  19. mentor972 says:

    He’s right you know, it’s a great gift, “Expessialy” for the Holiday Season.

  20. qsabe says:

    The PTB* factor at work
    *P T Barnum’s “Theres a sucker born every minute”

  21. Nimby says:

    Montel should be ashamed of himself. These coins are legal US tender and worth every penny of their face value. I doubt the manufacturers can be accused of defacing the money because the colorful Obama designs are simply glued on. At least according to this story:

  22. Nimby says:

    Sorry. I forgot to play nice with WordPress. Don’tcha just love software that makes you work the way IT wants and not the intuitive way? I’ll drop the www.


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