The Census Scam
by Eric Garris
by Eric Garris
friend drops by my house. He is a middle-level Democratic Party
activist who has been appointed as a middle-level census supervisor.
He lights up a joint. As he passes it to me, he explains that he
is "working" at that very moment counting people for the census.
"I don't understand. I thought the counting was over." He explains
that he is doing "spot counts" of people who were not counted in
the regular tallies. I ask him how he knows whether someone has
already been counted.
we can ask, but usually we just make a judgment call. For example,
I just saw 5,000 Hispanics on a bus who I am sure had not been counted."
He went on to explain the benefits of systematic overcounting. "We
get more money for government programs and more representation in
Congress." I asked him how pervasive this was in the census system.
He told me that it was virtually policy, at least in San Francisco.
He went on to explain that, according to some estimates, there were
actually 50,000 less people living in San Francisco than the number
used to figure money and apportionment. I told him that I had not
been counted, since I had burned my census form at a protest on
the steps of the Federal Building. He said, "You are Now!" We continued
to smoke and he continued to count imaginary people as the numbers
on the budget continued to mount up.
census is the largest remnant of the spoils system remaining in
the federal government. All high-level census officials are chosen
by the White House. Middle- and lower-level officials are chosen
by Congressional offices. While some lower-level employees are chosen
out of the pool who apply, rest assured that any ruling party hack
who wants a job gets one.
close friend of mine applied for a census job last year, when they
were doing the initial "scouting." She got a 94 on the test, which
is clearly excellent. She made several calls but wasn't given a
month, she called again and reactivated her application and test
score. After many calls, she finally got a supervisor who explained
that she would be hired, "if a neighborhood supervisor chose her."
She asked if this was totally up to the neighborhood supervisors,
she said that it was. Her next call was to her Congressthing. She
was able to speak to one of the Congressional staffers who, coincidentally,
earned extra income as the local census supervisor. The next day
she was hired.
is clear to me that the census isn't a little bit corrupt
it is a total scam. I would not be surprised if there are 50 million
less people in the country, although it may not be that much less.
It is clearly to the advantage of the people running the census
(political hacks and officeholders) to pad the numbers as much as
possible. It is illogical to expect them not to cheat.
what I know, I now look at the census advertisements in a different
light. What I hear now is, "remember to fill out your census early
and often and with big numbers. It is our future."
would never want to advocate breaking the census laws, but consider
the stakes. Our only defense against this gross inflation of the
numbers is to deflate them. The following are not recommendations,
just observations of actions that people wanting to deflate the
numbers would take:
- If there
are 4 people living at your house, some people might forget about
Since this article was originally written, the
Feds have upped the fine to "no more than $5000."
3571 states that The $5,000.00 fine referenced in section
3571 is a post conviction fine that only applies to an individual
who has been charged and convicted of a criminal infraction as
defined in section 3559. Unless an individual has been charged
and convicted of some criminal offense connected to the Census
and the crime is classified as an infraction, this $5,000.00 fine
does not apply.
- When the
follow-up people come to someone's door, they may accidentally
say that they are asleep but live alone and goodbye. Under census
procedures, this would result in a count of one and no return
- Some people
just leave a note on their door saying they live alone and don't
bother me, I have tuberculosis (or some other virulent disease).
- Some people
invite the census-taker in and offer some Great
Spotted Suck Toad Soup.
- Some people
answer the door in their Hannibal Lecter costume.
am not going to answer and am willing to fight the power. But my
first plea will be self-defense.
Garris [send him mail]
has been a political activist since the 1960s and has friends all
over the political spectrum. He is currently Webmaster for Antiwar.com
2000 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part
is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.