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Census

Patriot Post Brief

Monday, February 22, 2010

Walter E. Williams: “I want someone to tell me which [census] question serves the constitutional function of apportioning the number of seats in the U.S. House of Representatives: Does this house, apartment, or mobile home have hot and cold running water, a flush toilet, a bathtub or shower, a sink with a faucet, a refrigerator, a stove? Last month, what was the cost of electricity for this house, apartment, or mobile home? How many times has this person been married? After each question, the Bureau of the Census provides a statement of how the answer meets a federal need. I would prefer that they provide a statement of how answers to the questions meet the constitutional need as expressed in Article I, Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution.”     PDF

Your Census boondoggle story of the day: Fortune cookies

February 23, 2010 12:45 PM by Michelle Malkin

 

More Census propagandizing in the schools: $13 billion kiddie campaign

By Michelle Malkin  •  January 4, 2010 11:49 PM

I’ve noted the Obama administration’s use of children as Census p.r. staff before. (See Meet Obama’s newest Census collectors: Your kids!, Aug. 27, 2009).

Brace for even more aggressive tactics in the classroom — like this effort in Florida (hat tip – reader Susanne):

Ariel Civelek was just a baby in the last U.S. Census, but this time around, the 11-year-old can tell her family how important it is to be counted.

Civelek was among hundreds of students at Nova Blanche Forman Elementary School who got an earful and an eyeful about the national survey at a rally in the school cafeteria Wednesday.

Recognizing the power of getting the message out through the schools, the U.S. Census Bureau on Wednesday launched its 2010 Census in Schools program. The idea is for teachers to integrate census-related information into subjects like social studies and math.

“Any child is a good spokesperson,” said Renee Jefferson Copeland, chief of the program, who spoke to the fourth- and fifth-graders at the rally.

Part of a $13 billion national public information effort, the program is designed to reach 118,000 schools and about 56 million students. The goal is to improve response rates over the 2000 census, the last big national count.

At the kickoff Wednesday, students performed a skit in which they pretended to be a family uncertain about the census. During the skit, a child encourages his parents to open the door to a census worker, despite their apprehension. Beside a prop bowl of spaghetti, the worker helps the hesitant parents fill out the form.

It’s a scenario that could play out many times next spring when the forms arrive. Households can expect census forms in March and they should be returned by April. An army of census takers will follow up between April and July with those who do not return the forms in the mail.

Like Bill Ayers says: Education is the motor force of revolution.

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Earlier today: The Census boondoggle: $340 million ad campaign

The Super-Sized Census Boondoggle

February 6, 2010 — budsimmons

Lead Story

The Super-Sized Census Boondoggle

By Michelle Malkin  •  February 5, 2010 10:19 AM

My column looks at the bloated Census p.r. and education budget. GOP Sen. Johnny Isakson is asking questions. As well he should. History shows that the more the Census spends on advertising, the lower the response rate is. Best watchdog site for all the latest Census shenanigans: My Two Census.

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The Super-Sized Census Boondoggle
by Michelle Malkin
Creators Syndicate
Copyright 2010

If only the federal government were as responsible with our money as Pepsi is with theirs. The soda giant has been in the Super Bowl ad business for more than two decades. But this year, Pepsi determined it was economically unwise to pay $3 million for a 30-second spot. So, who’s foolish enough to pay for Super Bowl gold-plated airtime? You and me and Washington, D.C.

The U.S. Census Bureau will squander $2.5 million on a half-minute Super Bowl ad starring D-list celebrity Ed Begley, Jr., plus two pre-game blurbs and 12-second “vignettes” featuring Super Bowl anchor James Brown. It’s a drop in the Census boondoggle bucket (otherwise known as the tax-subsidized National Democrat Future Voter Outreach Drive). The Obama White House has allocated a total of $340 million on an “unprecedented” promotional blitz for the 2010 Census. That’s on top of $1 billion in stimulus money siphoned off for increased Census “public outreach” and staffing. In all, the Census will triple its total budget from 2000 to $15 billion.

Ads pimping the Census have already appeared during the Golden Globe awards and will broadcast during the Daytona 500 and NCAA Final Four championships. Some $80 million will be poured into multi-lingual ads in 28 languages from Arabic to Yiddish. Racial and ethnic groups have been squabbling over their share of the pie.

The U.S. census is a decennial census mandated by our constitution. Should Americans know about it? Sure. Should the p.r. budget become a bottomless slush fund in recessionary times? Surely not.

Yet, no matter how you translate it, the Census commercials to date have been an Ishtar-style flop. Global ad agency Draftfcb, based in (Obama’s hometown) Chicago and New York, nabbed a $200 million, four-year contract to oversee the Census Bureau’s direct marketing, online, and offline general market media strategies. The agency hired comedian Christopher Guest to produce “viral” spots. One of the supposedly “humor-driven” videos produced by Guest and commissioned by Draftfcb was uploaded to YouTube a few weeks ago. It has racked up a measly 6,880 views.

“For a once-a-decade project involving every living American, that’s a pretty crummy return on investment,” jeered AdFreak.com’s David Griner. “The video seems to be hampered by the same problem that plagues all campaigns meant to ‘go viral.—i.e., it’s simply not that funny…[T]he joke is a chuckler at best, and dragged out to three minutes, that chuckle gets spread pretty thin.” According to independent Census watchdog Stephen Morse, the feds conducted a total of 115 focus groups in 37 markets across the country before settling on the dud of an ad.

That’s a hell of a lot of focus-grouping to get people to pay a little extra attention to government head-count questionnaires that will be coming straight to their mailboxes, anyway.

Taxpayers are also footing the bill for the Mother of all Government Junkets – a three-month, $15 million road trip by lucky-ducky Census Bureau flacks traveling in 13 buses and cargo vans with trailers. They’ll be partying in New Orleans for Mardi Gras and at parades across the country. In case you were wondering about the anticipated Census Road Show carbon footprint, it’s an estimated 223 metric tons.

But not to worry: The eco-racketeers of an Al Gore-endorsed carbon offset firm called “Carbonfund.org” have become official government “partners” with the Census to offset all the vehicle emissions – and surf off the free publicity to garner more shady business.

As if overpriced TV ads, online videos no one watches, and indulgent, cross-country caravans weren’t enough, the Census Bureau is also enlisting 56 million schoolchildren to pester their parents and act as junior government enumerators. Educrats are spending several billions more on math and social studies lessons peddling the Census. Overzealous Census partners such as the National Association of Latino Elected Officials have distributed recruitment propaganda urging constituents to participate because “Joseph and Mary participated in the Census.” Goodness knows what kind of fear-mongering curricula the kids are being served in the name of counting heads – and shaping the electoral landscape.

“When times are tough, you tighten your belts,” President Obana lectured us. “You don’t blow a bunch of cash on Vegas.” Coincidentally, the Census Road Tour junketeers just wrapped up a visit in Vegas. Next stop? You guessed it: The Super Bowl in Miami. Taxpayers should start crying foul.


Mar 15, 2010 | Judson Berger

With Money on the Line, Local Governments Urge Illegal Immigrants to Fill Out Census

Cities, counties and states that haven’t been very kind to illegal immigrants over the years are suddenly dusting off their welcome mats. With the 2010 census about to get under way, those undocumented residents will be worth a lot of money for the next few weeks.

Feb 5, 2010 | Stephanie Condon

Illegal Immigrant Census Count Stirs Debate

Even as the controversial immigration debate boils over to this year’s census, one congressman said today that 2010 will be the year for comprehensive immigration reform.

Jan 26, 2010 | PAUL FRASNELLI

Illegal immigration is costing taxpayers billions

New Jersey elected a new governor and some state legislators; yet, there is little discussion concerning ways to reduce the stress of overburdened taxpayers. Illegal immigrant services cost New Jersey more than $2 billion/year.

Jan 20, 2010 | Stephen Wall

One California county spent millions on welfare for illegal immigrants’ American children

Illegal immigrants aren’t entitled to welfare. But their citizen children are. San Bernardino County spent nearly $64 million in state and federal money last year to provide welfare benefits to the American-born children of illegal immigrants.

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Census Bureau Flip-Flops on Defense of Marriage Act and Will Count Self-Identified Same-Sex Couples as ‘Married’

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