I know what you are saying about design. But you have to study the coins you have not the ones you wish you had. I think another thing to consider is that there was a purpose, I think, to making unattractive coins. I think the government really wanted to put a stop to the coin hobby- at least with circulating issues.
And by ancient design, I don't mean old, but thousands of years old. Look at ancient coins and you'll see the same 2 dimensional design.
And I'm not talking about the coins I don't have, but about the coins that we currently have. I was comparing to the 3 dimensional designs of the 1800s to the 2 dimensional designs of today. A huge difference.
What you say would only make sense if the coins were designed in the 1960s, but most were designed well before then. I could see your argument on why they don't want to change the obverse design though, but they did it recently for the nickel and dollar coins. Why those 2 and no others? So it doesn't make sense there either.
When they started the state quarter design in 1998, they messed up big time, by not making a nicer portrait of George.
I just think the main reason we have the designs we do is, because the US Mint doesn't care. They only do what they are told and don't want to be bothered with making things better. That's why they haven't changed the composition of the cent and nickel yet.
Until the past year or so, they were told to look at other compositions to reduce cost. Otherwise they would have done nothing. They do create an annual report and if no one analyzes it from the US Treasury or Congress, then nothing will be done to change anything.
Our government isn't proactive at all. They only react to things that have already happened and for quite some time too.