Thursday, March 18, 2010

Off Topic - The 2010 Census

Well, folks, the 2010 Census is here. Billions of dollars (yes, that's Billion with a "B") of the taxpayers' hard earned money has been spent on the project, yet an obvious error exists which appears to have eluded many.

As you may know, delivery of the Census began earlier this week. The message insert from the Census Bureau dated March 15, 2010 states, in bold faced letters: "Please complete and mail back the enclosed census form today." Unfortunately, compliance with that request is impossible at this point in the time-line if one wishes to be accurate. You see, Question No. 1 on the Census Form asks: "How many people were living or staying in this house, apartment, or mobile home on April 1, 2010?" As written, one cannot respond to that question correctly until at least April 2, 2010; however, the Census Bureau asks that the form be completed and mailed back as early as March 15th. How can that be? How can one state presently the number of people living in a place as of April 1st when that date has yet to arrive? Didn't anyone at the Census Bureau bother to cogitate about such a basic consideration?

Given the enormous amount of money spent on this decennial venture (which is likely more than the gross national product of many small countries), such a blatant error is outrageous, yet hardly surprising. Like the $500 toilet seats of decades past, the ineptitude of government continues at the taxpayers' expense.

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