[Woz] prints and spend his own $2 bills

[Steve Wozniak's] damn the man, devil may care attitude continues to show with this recent interview. Here he shows off the pad of $2 bills he had made up. He’ll sell one sheet of them to you for $5. Do you think that’s a scam? He say’s “you’d be an idiot not to buy it for five bucks” and after we dug a little deeper, he’s right.

Now, you really need to watch the video after the break before you read the rest of this feature. Trust us, it’s extremely entertaining. [Woz] mentions that he hired a local printer to make the pads for him, but he got the paper from a high-quality print shop. They meet the specs of the federal government and by law they’re legal tender. Each pad has a page of four bills which can be torn off of the gummed top, and there are perforations between each bill for easy separation.

Nothing illegal is going on here. We followed one of the YouTube commentor’s links to this article [Woz] wrote about his $2 bill exploits. The high-quality printer he buys the paper from is the Bureau of Printing and Engraving. He buys the bills in sheets and pays a premium for that option. Each $2 bill costs him $3. But the fun he’s had over the years is probably worth it.

[Thanks Rob]

Comments

  1. Jeremy says:

    Hey, I’ve got a great solution for that round of deflation coming up.

  2. Matt says:

    Your post title is wrong. He doesn’t print them. He just has them made into pads. It seems like the interviewer in the video doesn’t understand this.

  3. Circuitmage says:

    Top 10 signs you have too much $$.

  4. cde says:

    Wrong. Woz Purchases LEGAL UNCUT SHEETS FROM THE FEDERAL RESERVE, then takes them to a local print shop to add glue to the top.

    • rtkwe says:

      Very important detail there. No matter how close they matched or how much he spent making them, if they’re not printed by the Treasury they’re not legal and you’ll have the Secret Service to deal with.
      Side note: Why are the Secret Service tasked with that? Seems their time should be wholey spent protecting the president.

      • colincalvert says:

        Look into the history of the Secret Service (it’s actually quite interesting). They were never intended to protect the president, Lincoln created the division to clean up the currency mess resulting from the US Civil War. It wasn’t till Kennedy that they were tasked with protecting presidents.

      • baobrien says:

        The Secret Service was originally founded by Lincoln for the sole purpose of tracking counterfeit currency. Protecting the President somehow worked it’s way into the Secret Service later on.

      • frigginnickname says:

        Paper US currency isn’t printed by or for the Treasury, and hasn’t been since the Federal Reserve Note was introduced*, but rather by the US Bureau of Engraving and Printing. The US Mint produces coins that are legal tender for the UST.

        * Excepting the Silver Certificate, whose revival by JFK’s executive order 11110 may have led to his assassination.

    • Actually, the sheets are purchased from the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.

  5. cde says:

    Sorry, snap commenting. But for real, this post made it look like Woz was having his own money printed, in that not-so-legal way.

  6. tehnoo says:

    I don’t really understand because the (intentional) lack of details…

    Does the paper cost more than $2 per bill? Do they come pre-numbered?

  7. Doktor Jeep says:

    here’s the deal.

    You can play legal acrobatics with money so long as you are not an activist speaking truth to power, exposing the fraud in the two party system, and things like that.

    But if you do anything with money other than earn, pay taxes on it, and spend it, and you are an activist or “patriot”, they will use it as an excuse to legally crucify you and maybe even put you in prison too after they take everything you have.

    If you want to “make money” mine bitcoins.

    • Tony says:

      What are you smoking, and is there any left for the rest of us?

    • m1ndtr1p says:

      “If you want to “make money” mine bitcoins.”

      Or maybe, get a job, like everyone else…

    • Larry says:

      what are bitchoinions anyway?

    • ffffff says:

      bitcoins? gimme a break! you must be new here.

      smart people invest in cosbycoins

    • WMC says:

      Few sound bytes scream ‘lazy thinker’ louder than ‘speak truth to power’. Congratulations – you are what you despise.

      • Tim e. Domain says:

        One problem with thinking in general is that we need to abstract to cope with the big picture.

        I detest the “speak truth to power” crowd (they apparently didn’t get the memo about all power coming from the muzzle of a gun) but there’s an important lesson here.

        When people talk this way, they are substituting their own internal index label for the actual thought. People who say things like this are using the (discourse) equivalent of text speak when the rest of us expect formal phrasing.

        L8R = Later
        “Speak truth to power” = disagreeing out loud with “THEM” when everyone else won’t. We used to call this civil disobedience.

        I believe such adaptations to be evolutionary – and also that they expose a streamlined thought process that now excludes any desire to re-examine the foundation of those thoughts.

        Our language and culture are filled with these shorthand notations – “Support the troops” “Fight the Power” “Those Damn liberals” “Welfare Queen” “Gay Marriage” “Wall Street” “Creating Jobs” “Bankers”, etc. and not a single one means anything without context.

        What’s interesting is that the context is often assumed to be present by the speaker and audience, even when it is not. I used to think that these assumptions indicated borderline mental illness, but it’s obvious to me that a society requires these internal abstract contexts to function. I believe that this might be some weird inverse function of the cooperation mechanism, related like time and frequency when doing Fourier transforms.

        I also believe that this abstraction mechanism might be the epigenetic foundation of tribal politics, and acts as a sort of behavioral catalyst that lets us dispense with actually beating each other up all the time in favor of just saying stuff…

        And a lot of people (myself included) have been binding up pads of 25 $2 bills for years and freaking out the ignorant. You don’t need a printer, just cut some cardstock to size and then use rubber cement to bind them on a short side.

        Lotsa amateur Secret Service wannabees out there, so use caution in handing these out – it’s a drag when you have to wait for three hours to discover that someone in charge knows about the $2 bill.

  8. Chad says:

    So can we do this with 1 dollar bills — will have to do this!!

  9. J says:

    I’m confused, after reading the article and watching the video, I do not see him directly mentioning printing the bills himself, only ordering them from the government and gluing them together.

    If he was getting them printed, how on earth is this legal?

    • Johnny O. Farnen says:

      Again, as other commenters have stated, that is the joke…

      Woz is not printing them, he is buying uncut sheets and having a printer (for those not old enough to remember such a thing, that is a place where they make printed materials….not a box hooked up to your ‘puter…) make them into perforated pads.

      The interesting catch here is the serial numbers…

  10. A dedicated troll cares not for money.

  11. d hamilton says:

    What is Woz email, I want on entire pad !!!

  12. Here is the official place to buy uncut currency sheets:

    http://www.moneyfactorystore.gov/uncutcurrency.aspx

    Coin and currency resellers charge extra.

    Sheets of 4x $1 are $16.25 each. Sheets of 32x $1 are $61 each. Sheets of $2 are currently “out of stock” predicted to be available “summer 2012″, or you may get them from resellers.

    Woz hired a printer to perforate and bind his sheets into a pad.

  13. joesugar says:

    Great story. Considering how the look of US bills has changed over the past few years and the relative rarity of $2 bills, I’m surprised we don’t hear of more cases like this.

  14. Rachie says:

    I’ll take 5000 of them, then head right to the bank.

    • d hamilton says:

      I thought that too,

      but how do you get in touch with WOZ to make the deal.

      I think he “sells” them to the people in front of him when they say “can I have one”

      Yes, it would be great to “make” $8 from $5.

      • adcurtin says:

        I emailed him 6 years ago (!) asking about this. Here is his response:

        “Yikes, these things are too precious to sell in such a way.

        I pay $3 for each bill on sheets.

        A pad of mine is 50 sheets of 4 bills each, for $400 face value but $600 cost.

        But you can buy bills from the Bureau of Engraving and Printing yourself. I can’t hand out entire pads or I’ll run out too soon. Sorry.

        Woz”

  15. Sam says:

    If you’ve got a bunch of precut $2 bills lying around you can make your own pad: http://www.instructables.com/id/2-Bill-Pad/

    Or use ones. They’re easier to get, but score lower on the troll scale.

  16. details says:

    Woz is a fraud according to his friend and business partner Steve Jobs. He was allegedly scamming the phone companies for years. I don’t blame anyone for not trusting him and refusing to do business with him.

    • charles says:

      Hmm that coming from Jobs, a man that parked in handicapped spots and had no license plate for decades. Nevermind buying residency in several states only to sell them as soon as he got to the top of the organ transplant list. He was a horrible human being.

      Color me unimpressed.

      • And even more crazy.. Right before his transplant..

        A Foxconn employee, (foxconn makes all iTrash products in china slave shops) stole one of the iphone prototypes and Apple/Foxconn internal security forces were dispatched to his home, and at some point after they “shamed” him for stealing it, he threw himself out of a highrise appt building. It was ruled an appalling suicide.

        On the plus side.. Steve got his transplant.. Lot of good it did the greedy F@#*.

    • Yes.. cry because the phone company got “scammed”..

      Never mind the RAPE they’ve been dealing to the public ever since mama bell’s birth.

      I’m glad shes being crushed to death under her outdated and dilapidated copper wire network. I hope she choaks to death upon all the billions upon billions shes extorted from the public and used to sell and buy herself in and out of conglomerance attempting keep her true self hidden from federal legislation.

      There has only ever been, and will ever only be.. AT&T.

      She’ll just sell a part of herself, to herself and change the name, then sell it back to another previously name changed self, then absorbs back into her former self, just to start the process all over again.

      Mama Bell can burn in hell.

      • Gabe says:

        Stop crying. You use their service so pay up.

        Now, the real problem is the gov that says is protecting your interest but instead forbids you to offer a competitive product in that arena.

        If you want to direct your rage do so to the gov.

    • n0lkk says:

      Has been reported by some, that Jobs himself was right there along side Wozniak and others doing the same.[shrug] wouldn’t be the first time the pot got away with calling the pot black,while making a boat load of money along the way.

    • Cyril says:

      You mean Steve “I’ll go halves with you if you do all the work – then keeps most of the money” Jobs?

      Yeah he’s a peach.

  17. Gravis says:

    there is no way this can be legal. dollar bills are bank notes indicating the government owes you that much money. saying someone else owes you money from something you made is illegal. woz should expect a visit from the secret service if he hasnt already.

    • charles says:

      It is a joke. It’s real money from the real national mint made up in a way to look fake for the lulz.

    • baobrien says:

      He buys uncut sheets of bills from the Federal Reserve and has them perforated and bound (by the aforementioned printer) to make people think they are fake. He doesn’t get them printed.

    • DrAltaica says:

      dollar bills are bank notes indicating the government owes you that much money.

      You forgetting about the Nixon Shock

      “The Reichsbank promises to pay bearer at sight 100 Marks German Standard” – so runs the inscription, and monetary theory declared that the banknotes can circulate only because of this promise to pay. But the inscription has been implicitly cancelled by the declaration that the notes themselves are legal tender. Yet the notes continue to circulate. How is this possible ? The German peasant, for example, consented formerly to sell his cow for 1000 silver marks which, if melted, would yield only 400 marks worth of silver, and he is now willing to give his best horse in exchange for a banknote which, both from a material and a theoretical point of view, he must regard as a scrap of paper!

      The inscription on the notes should be brought into harmony with facts. Upon the notes as upon the gold and silver coins should be written simply 10 – 20 – 100 marks. The rest of the inscription, especially the word “pay”, should be cancelled. This word is used in promises to pay (promissory notes, bills of exchange and so forth); and banknotes are not promises to pay. With promises to pay, especially those of the State, the holder receives interest; but with banknotes the opposite is true, the drawer, that is, the State, receives interest.*

      (*With the present note-issue of 10 billion marks, the State draws 500 million marks interest annually.)

  18. Smackey says:

    I’d take them to the gentlemen’s club

  19. UBERKron says:

    Hes expert in talking and deception. He even explains the process. Good gauge for idiocracy detection though. I can’t replicate this here in nz though.

  20. Wm_Atl says:

    Engadget got played. I heard about Woz buying sheets of uncut 2$ bills and having them bound and perforated. As mentioned earlier you can buy legal tender from the Govt web site http://www.moneyfactorystore.gov/uncutcurrency.aspx
    I am sure by now the Secret Service knows to ask anybody who calls was it Woz. Honestly I think he loves the attention he gets from all his practical/ unpractical jokes.

  21. BrysonR says:

    Want. To. Buy.

    Dear Santa Woz,
    This year for Christmas I would like…

  22. josh says:

    I’d like to see him take those to Taco Bell!

  23. Erik Johnson says:

    I remember reading about this years ago. Neat and all, but why is this on HaD?

  24. supershwa says:

    Woz is hilarious

  25. Grovenstien says:

    Hack that currency! As if life wasn’t complicated enough, I then have to explain that it is real money! Oh what a card!

  26. Whatnot says:

    I keep wondering if this played when josh was let go by engadget. (he claimed he left himself)
    Either way I thought it was not nice from woz to not return the respect got and to do all this BS, it’s something that disappointed me and possibly gives me an insight why he got along with steve jobs so well.

    As for josh, he now has his pretty influential http://www.theverge.com, so all’s well for him

    • Frank Cohen says:

      The beauty of it is he never said he had them printed. He said he had them made up at a local print shop from higher quality materials.

      The Engaget guy is the one to suggest Woz printed them.

      Genius.

      • Whatnot says:

        But the engadget guys accepted it all because they admire the woz and respected him and were flattered by his visit, and I think a joke is funny but he went a bit far in only pointing out it was nonsense days later and basically he made anything he said on the show (or in fact any interview) doubtful and there can be no separation anymore between wozniak talking complete BS or being earnest. And thus he ruined his own reputation really, by basically pissing over an appearance that was meant to be informal but serious and treating it like they were a joke and not meant to be taken serious.

        It left a sour taste for me.

  27. andar_b says:

    You used to be able to buy the uncut sheets through novelty vendor catalogs that come out around Christmas, anyone could do it. The fact that he makes it up like a notepad is hilarious though. XD

  28. wowme@wtf.com says:

    Kind of miguided statement

    SBC = SouthwesternBellCorp – A spin-off of AT&T due to AntiTrust Lawsuit against AT&T

    SBC **BOUGHT** AT&T

    Thus THERE IS NO AT&T, simply a rebranded MA BELL TELLY CO!
    SBC is NOW masquerading as At&T. Have we come full circle?

  29. wowme@wtf.com says:

    Comment was cut off…

    Was supposed to have quote

    “There has only ever been, and will ever only be.. AT&T. ”
    before the “Kind of misguided statement”

  30. Dan says:

    I read about this trick with $2 bills years ago, only it was $20 bills and you stuck them in a checkbook. They strongly advised that you NOT try to use it at the bank.

  31. alpharesearch says:

    Quote from the video: “I got a printer in my home town … California to make these pads for me and I got them the supplies from a higher quality printer.”

    Looks like his higher quality printer is the federal mint and the local printer is something like a copy shop. He is buying the sheets, looks like his is telling the truth…

  32. johnturmel says:

    Jct: There’s no reason for him to have made it look like the real thing, that got the Liberty Dollar busted. I also issue my own private currency denominated in Hours and with my picture on the credit. He could too. I’ll take Wozniak Hours if he’ll take mine.

  33. Robert says:

    No, not a single one of you is aware of slavery by usury and the creation and issuance of a debt based “money” system couple with a “progressive” graduated income tax.

    None of you really know freedom because none of you have ever had it. Your lives are already bought and sold, and you will pay your taskmaster the cost of keeping you enslaved.

    Mock what I say, but know this. A free man dies only once. Cowards die daily.

    None of you will ever NOT be cowards when it comes to freeing yourselves from the shackels the Federal Reserve’s owners have placed you in. The tax man will come a calling to collecy your “fair share” of the 20 plus TRILLION debt YOU owe.

    Perhaps you can call upon your military to help you fight back against the money power, but then I digress, they are off figthing for G.E., BP, Exxon, and whole host of other Corporate Conglomerates that have raised themselves up around the Federal Reserve. It’s not YOUR government and its not YOUR military. It’s theirs, and they are NOT going to help you.

    You will see more killings, senseless acts of violence as the society of America crumbles to ashes, knowing there is a gigantic fraud that creates the class warfare. And it is warfare.

    Know that.

  34. John says:

    Is it a full moon or something? What’s with all the wackos.

  35. bothersaidpooh says:

    Memo to self, make some “legal” looking notes with “£1.337 Bank of Hackers”, with skull and crossbones and a few anti-MPAA and anti-RIAA signs on them.
    Ought to sell well around Halloween.

    Making sure to put “This is NOT LEGAL TENDER” clearly on both sides :-)

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