Thursday, June 4, 2009

Least Effective Penalty Ever

If you get pulled over for speeding you may end up paying a fine of a fee hundred dollars. If you don't put money in the meter there's another hefty fine. Heck, even if you jaywalk you could end up paying 50 bucks. All of these penalties work, in that they discourage me breaking the rules they are designed to enforce. So what fine doesn't work: Overdue Library Fees.

You know what doesn't motivate me to return a book on time: 5 cents. My library charges 5 cents for everyday your book is late. It is literally less effective than the proverbial slap on the wrist. Library's would actually get more books back on time if they did ACTUALLY slap you on the wrist. I have had a book that was due back over a week ago and I owe the library 40 cents. 40 cents! On any given day I could have that in my pocket. Not only is it the cheapest fine ever, they'll let you pay it at your convenience. Ask if you can pay it back another day and see how lax they are.

Hey library, how much money have you amassed this year in late fees? 20 bucks? What can you get with 20 bucks? That's not even enought to buy a book.

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