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The E-Sylum:  Volume 11, Number 4, January 27, 2008, Article 27

POLITICAL SLOGANS STAMPED ON U.S. MILITARY PAYMENT CERTIFICATES

[The January 24nd, 2008 issue (No. 1587) of the MPC Gram, an
email newsletter for collectors of Military Payment Certificates,
published a short article by Jim Downey on advertising slogans
stamped on MPC notes.  As recently as last week we discussed
these types of slogans on U.S. paper money, but this was the
first I'd learned of such stamps on MPCs. Jim's article is
reprinted here.  -Editor]

Using United States currency for advertising purposes is a
violation of federal anti-counterfeiting laws.

Title 18, Section 475 of the United States Code makes it
illegal to ". . . impress[es] upon or attach[es] to any [such]
instrument, obligation, or security, or any coin of the United
States, any business or professional card, notice, or advertisement,
or any notice or advertisement whatever . . ."

This provision is pretty routinely violated.  I have quite a
few pieces of US currency which advertise websites and other
businesses.  Political messages also frequently make their
way onto US currency particularly in an election year.

In the run-up to the election of 1948, the use of MPC for
political advertising was so pervasive in Japan that the Army
issued an order recalling MPC carrying political slogans.  An
article in the March 28, 1948 New York Times indicates that SCAP
Headquarters issued an order calling in MPC containing political
slogans supporting and criticizing the candidacy of General
MacArthur for president.  The article states that most of the
slogans were supportive of MacArthur and identified that defacing
MPC in this manner was a violation of federal law

 IN REASON WE TRUST
 esylum_v11n03a17.html

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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