Though the Federal Government used thousands of Census-Taker jobs to inflate the latest employment figures, they probably forgot that the very fact that they did that actually fueled the very fire that is toasting the buttocks of those same federal employees. A spate of recent news stories relate the various instances of aggression and just-plain violence that many Census Takers, let’s call them “CT’s”, are running into out in the field.
I was amused last winter when I read an article describing how these folks were using snow machines and four-wheelers to reach folks in the outer reaches of New England. “Ridiculous” would be a forgiving description of the money our government spends to attain the most rudimentary information from the citizenry. Even personally, I met a woman twice on my parents property, which sets back about a half mile from a rural road at the very end of a long, gravel driveway. Not once, but twice, I met this woman wandering around there looking for my mother, who was out on both occasions. I assume she tracked my wily mother down on some other occasion and got those boxes checked on that form. Another bureaucratic success story.
I don’t understand the aversion to the form. I find it silly, fill it out the day it arrives, and mail it back to save myself from having to endure the torrent of reminder letters, the threatening tone of which increase as time goes on, and pride myself on having saved my country money by responding to their query promptly. The questions were not difficult as I remember. A page or so of race and ethnicity questions, a tally of relatives currently in jail, and, I think, a demand to know more about my ice cream habits and preferences.
Still, I’m not surprised that a lot of people have shown beyond a reasonable doubt that they are not in the mood to be bothered by the government with regards to the silly form. I don’t blame them, either, though I don’t condone throwing a steel patio set at a CT as one woman did. Or chasing after a CT on a ride-on lawnmower. Or allowing your large geese to freely peck a CT in a manner that recalls Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds”…the attic scene, I think.
One female CT recalled how a man had tried to drag her into his apartment. He would be checking “yes” in the box that asks if anyone is planning on going to jail in the near future. This same woman was one of an army of CT’s who expressed shock and dismay at the level of “anger against the government”. Another indicator…their surprise…of the great divide between so many of us. I, for instance, would not be surprised at all, were I a CT, to be met with angry customers on a pretty regular basis. Surprised? Really? That people are angry with the government? You’re kidding, right?
Who could be annoyed with the last several decades of American politics and government? Forget party lines. The “Fed” has grown into an obese, drunk with greed and power, and worst, inept, manatee-like creature that can’t seem to do anything right. Their failures don’t faze them. They operate without a budget or deadline and many times, without a clear purpose. They suck from the working class and earners to support their failures and now to support non-citizens and their children, to the point where a middle-class existence, even with both parents working full-time, is becoming unattainable. We have watched drugs and promiscuity eat through our culture like a cancer and nobody has even noticed.
A bureaucracy so inept, that it stops barges helping desperately to hinder the biblical damage being done in the Gulf, to check their paperwork and inspect fire extinguishers. And we pay them to do this.
Yeah…this is no time in history for sensitive Census Takers. You better be dressed in Kevlar, as a matter of fact. And, naturally, the one pertinent question that the form may have asked…”How do you rate the performance of your friends in Washington…?” Well…that question was nowhere to be found…but it got answered, didn’t it?