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CNSNews has a story with letters from census workers that describe what they’re actually doing and getting paid for.

True Confessions from America’s Census Workers

Wednesday, April 07, 2010
By Michelle Malkin
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President Obama’s politicized, profligate U.S. census drive is so desperate for positive press that it has now recruited former Bush senior adviser Karl Rove to do public service announcements.

Rove pleads on video: “Please answer the 10 easy questions. They’re almost the same ones Madison helped write for the first census back in 1790.” Message: If you don’t join the census bandwagon, James Madison will have lost!

Sorry, Mr. Rove. Playing the Founding Fathers card isn’t going to quell conservative criticism of how the Obama administration has exploited the census boondoggle for both economic and ideological gain.

For the record, I have no beef with the constitutional mandate. I complied by filling out my census form and sending it back—with “American” in the blank for race/ethnicity to register my opposition to government racial classifications.

Despite apocalyptic suggestions by census officials and some Republican politicians that conservatives are recklessly boycotting the decennial head count, analysis by both the right-leaning Daily Caller and left-leaning Plum Line websites shows that return rates from conservative counties are in line with national averages.

So, what makes the Obama census campaign different from other census programs? First, its naked, left-wing special interest pandering. The White House is championing a “Queer the Census” movement by pro-gay marriage groups, for example, and the Commerce Department is working with open-borders leaders who want to use the census as leverage to stop all immigration raids.

The electoral stakes are high. Some $400 billion in federal funding and, most importantly, the apportionment of congressional seats are up for grabs. Instead of straightforward enumeration of the American population, Obama and the left’s identity politics-mongers are turning the $1 billion, taxpayer-subsidized census public relations drive into a government preferences lobbying bonanza.

More galling: the White House manipulation of census worker employment to goose the jobless rate. Last week, the government touted employment figures bolstered by the hiring of temporary workers for Census 2010. The Census Bureau anticipates it may add nearly 750,000 workers to its payroll by May. Liberal economist Heidi Shierholz exulted in The Hill: “This is the best-timed census you could ever dream of.” And Team Obama plans to milk it for all it’s worth.

Over the past several weeks, I’ve received e-mails from census workers across the country describing the directive from their managers to slow down, stall, waste time and stretch out their work unnecessarily. As a counter-public service announcement, I’m reprinting some of their letters:

— “…I have been working with the census for two weeks, and every day I shake my head at the blatant inefficiency and deliberate misuse of taxpayer money. Specifically, we have been doing enumeration for those who do not have a home, the homeless in shelters, soup kitchens and in targeted non-sheltered outdoor locations, such as parks, subway stations, etc. I personally have been sent to check on shelters that were already determined to be day programs during the preceding round of quality control, yet they pay me the mileage and hourly wage to go back and make sure that they are still only day programs. I walked through parks and parking lots looking for homeless people to enumerate, not even by talking to them, but just by observing their race, sex and approximate age. …

“…The way the process has been set up by government bureaucracy is so backward and prevents a person who is industrious and efficient from being able to work freely… This is the first job where I am encouraged to be slow and inefficient.”

— “Last summer I participated in the ‘address canvassing’ (AC) project. What this entailed was walking around a neighborhood, literally door to door, with a little handheld computer. My job was not to enter addresses so that these people could receive their form, but to make sure that the addresses that the first wave of people put into the system and appeared on the computer were actually there… Mostly, it was me getting paid $15.25/hour plus mileage to take my dog for a walk and push a few buttons.

“In an average suburban neighborhood where the houses are somewhat close to each other, it was no problem to do about 35 to 40 addresses per hour once you learned how to quickly enter data into the computer. The census said that I should be doing about 12 to 15 per hour. My direct bosses told me that I should NOT be doing 35 to 40, because it was making them and other people look bad. So instead of walking at a snail’s pace, I just did my 35 to 40/hour and doubled my time when I submitted my hours. Again, sorry for the tax dollar grab, but I was told not to be so darned efficient or else I’d be cut!”

— “I had the great pleasure of working for the address canvassing last spring. I was hired in early April for a job that was to be completed by the first week of July. I have a military background and a background in human resources, and the whole process left me with blood squirting from my eyes… I worked in the field for four days so that I would know what to do. The remainder of my time was spent sitting in a McDonald’s to have a daily progress meeting with each of the enumerators. I was paid from the time I left my house to the time I got home … plus mileage. I was told to pad the time or mileage to cover my McDonald’s food, since I was camping in a booth all day. For all that, I was paid $11.75 an hour. …We had a really good crew and were done by the second week of May… Philadelphia was going nuts because our region was getting done so fast, but there was nothing we could do to slow it down another two months.

“… I never saw such a mismanaged outfit in all my life. I just shook my head in total disbelief. Our work could have been done with half the people. We did have those that quit right after training, to the tune of $800 spent on nothing. I earned approximately $3,000. I will say, to be quite honest, it was the easiest money I ever made. On the exit interview, I was asked if I wanted to be called back for further work. I wrote ‘NO’ in big letters. I didn’t want to take any further part in what I saw to be a racket.”

What would Madison think now?

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WorldNetDaily is calling attention to a disturbing activity sanctioned by the Obama Administration.  The 2010 census takers are recording the latitude and longitude of every front door in America as they go around taking the census.  Read below for more.

Census GPS-tagging your home’s front door

Coordinates being taken for every residence in nation


Posted: May 05, 2009
8:32 pm Eastern
By Bob Unruh
© 2009 WorldNetDaily


GPS satellite

According to an online Yahoo program, the Global Position System coordinates for the White House, probably one of the best-known publicly-owned buildings in the world, are 38.898590 Latitude and -77.035971 Longitude. And since you know that, it’s no big deal for the White House to know the coordinates for your front door, is it?

Some people think it is, and are upset over an army of some 140,000 workers hired in part with a $700 million taxpayer-funded contract to collect those GPS readings for every front door in the nation.

The data collection, presented as being in preparation for the 2010 Census, is pinpointing with computer accuracy the locations and has raised considerable concern from privacy advocates who have questioned why the information is needed. They also are more than a little worried over what could be done with that information.

Enhancing those concerns is the recent decision in the Obama administration to have White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel in an oversight role over the census, which will control a reapportionment of congressional seats and could be used to solidify to a stranglehold a single political party’s control over the nation, its budget, military and future.

Commerce Secretary Gary Locke recently told the Washington Post: “The census director reports to me, and, of course, I serve at the pleasure of the president.” He added the White House told him “it has no interest in politicizing [the census].”

But at American Daily Review, blogger Douglas Gibbs had more than a few doubts.

“GPS coordinates of your front door will make it easier for the government to monitor you,” he said. “The U.S. Census Bureau is simply an excuse – a harmless looking means of obtaining the front door coordinates. The creation of GPS coordinates for front doors has nothing to do with the census, in all honesty, no matter how much the United States government tries to convince you that it does.”

He recalled wondering why, just weeks ago, the Obama administration announced its oversight of the census, “literally taking control of the census away from the Commerce Department.”

He put that together with Obama’s longtime push for national service.

“The Obamites, thirsty to serve their new messianic figure, have lost enough of their objectivity to be willingly recruited into such an insidious program like gaining these coordinates for the U.S. government. … I ask again, what would be the purpose of shooting the GPS coordinates of American doorways?” he wrote.

The answer he provided was alarming.

“Imagine, if you will, that there are a number of people in a neighborhood that could not find the addresses they are tasked with finding. They are not locals, maybe are unable to read a map, or perhaps do not have the time to pull out a map, and they need to find you with specific GPS coordinates. Their devices would lead them to your front door with these coordinates. Imagine a crisis is afoot, and martial law is put into place. U.S. troops need to round up particular folks,” he wrote.

“Let’s take this a step further. After all, with Barack Obama desiring to decrease the number of folks in the military, and with forces committed worldwide, we may not have sufficient military forces at home to deal with a rising national emergency. If the government decided to rely on foreign troops, perhaps United Nations personnel, most of which may not understand the street signs, much less know the lay of the land, they could use GPS devices to direct them to your front door,” he wrote.

According to the Census Bureau’s website, the GPS technology “allows us to reduce the amount of time spent by census workers in locating addresses … Most importantly, by adding a GPS coordinate to each housing unit, the Census Bureau is able to ensure that residents are counted in the right location.”

At Canada Free Press, commentator J.B. Williams said, “I can’t resist the urge to question the authority and purpose behind such a BIG BROTHER initiative, when the official census itself is not due to be taken until 2010…

“No imagination is required to think up a whole laundry list of evil that could be done with a nationwide GPS grid of coordinate’s markers painted on every private home across the country. But I was having trouble thinking up one good reason for it, even one legitimate use that would justify what must be a very expensive undertaking,” he said.

“Why does the Obama administration need or want the latitude and longitude coordinates for every home in America? Why the rush to GPS paint every home in the next 90 days? Why must the marker be within 40 feet of every front door? For what possible purpose does the Fed need GPS coordinates for every home, and under what authority do they have the right? Census workers, whom I asked, had the same holy-crap look on their faces that I had by then,” he wrote.

Then he cited the cooperative effort that the U.S. Census Bureau has reached with ACORN, the organization of community activists with which Obama worked.

“Obama’s interest in an ACORN-controlled 2010 Census, for the purpose of redistricting to the advantage of Democrats before the 2010 mid-term elections, comes as NO shock from a regime known for their heavy handed Rules for Radicals political strategies. But what does this have to do with GPS marking every home in the country?” he questioned.

Ask those who have served military duty, he said. They are very familiar with the most common use of GPS target painting, and the rest might want to read books such as “The Precision Revolution: GPS and the Future of Aerial Warfare.”

Online sources noted that Google Maps already probably has listed most homes in the nation.

“But the front door? Sounds like a jackboot convenience to me,” said RightSoup.com.

Added Williams, “What I do know is this … Coincidences of this number and magnitude don’t happen. … I also know that people had better start asking the right people the right questions and demanding answers fast. Begin with asking the mainstream press why there has been no public notification of the federal governments GPS marking your front door?”

A number of concerned citizens have contacted WND about the program, and repeatedly have cited warnings delivered by the GPS squad members that their failure to allow the readings would result in fines and possibly imprisonment under Title 13, which allows the census to be taken.

But repeatedly they’ve gotten no answers when asked what a GPS reading has to do with the number of people living at the home – which isn’t supposed to be subject to questions until 2010 anyway.

One WND reader raised these questions to a local census office.

“What authority does the U.S. Census Bureau have for sending anyone to my front door in April of 2009 to mark it with GPS coordinates? This is unacceptable. The census is not due until 2010, and the usurpation of the census by the White House is unconstitutional. … This citizen will not answer census questions until the year they are due, and demands that my GPS coordinates be removed from all government records.”

The census response?

“Address canvassing should conclude by mid-July. The operation will use new hand-held computers equipped with GPS to increase geographic accuracy. The ability to capture GPS coordinates for most of the nation’s housing units will greatly reduce the number of geographic coding errors caused by using paper maps in previous counts. … During the address canvassing operation, census workers may ask to verify a housing structure’s address and whether there are additional living quarters on the property. All census workers carry official government badges marked with just their name. You also may ask them for a picture ID from another source to confirm their identity. In addition, some census workers might carry a ‘U. S. Census Workers’ bag.”

Another WND reader, from Washington state, reported he is having his attorney look into the legality of the GPS data collection and hopes to have enough support for a legal challenge.

The reader, whose name was withheld because of his concerns over repercussions, said a government home data collector ignored his no trespassing sign, and he was threatened by the collector for wanting to refuse to provide “census” information.

He said GPS mapping nowhere is authorized for census workers.

Census spokesman Stephen Buckner told WND the activity is, in fact, proper, and even necessary. There are homes being built and torn down constantly, and the census needs such information. Local building records and other government databases such as tax records would not suffice, he said.

“There are 140,000 workers walking every street of America,” he told WND, in order to document 145 million addresses with GPS coordinates.

He assured WND that all such personal information is confidential, because employees of contractors doing the work are subject to a $250,000 fine or imprisonment for five years for revealing personal information. He also confirmed that the last case that was prosecuted under the law was nearly 50 years ago.

“We have to verify every single address,” he said.

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FOX News is reporting that Obama has decided he wants to move oversight of the U.S. Census from the Commerce Department directly into the hands of Rahm Emanuel.

With Democrats (or even Republicans, if this were a Republican move) in control of the total census numbers, they can effectively redraw congressional districts, affect the Electorial College makeup, and even steer congressional funding to specific districts.

Is this the “change” you Obama voters wanted?  Total Liberal Control?

GOP Sounds Alarm Over Obama Decision to Move Census to White House

A number of Republicans are joining the fight to put the census issue into the political spotlight “before it’s too late.”

FOXNews.com

Monday, February 09, 2009

Utah’s congressional delegation is calling President Obama’s decision to move the U.S. census into the White House a purely partisan move and potentially dangerous to congressional redistricting around the country.

Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, told FOX News on Monday that he finds it hard to believe the Obama administration felt the need to place re-evaluation of the inner workings of the census so high on his to-do list, just three weeks into his presidency.

“This is nothing more than a political land grab,” Chaffetz said.

Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, told the Salt Lake Tribune that the move “shouldn’t happen.” He and Chaffetz are trying to rally Republicans “before its too late.”

“It takes something that is supposedly apolitical like the census, and gives it to a guy who is infamously political,” Bishop said of Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, who would be tasked with overseeing the census at the White House.

The U.S. census — a counting of the U.S. population — is conducted every 10 years by the Commerce Department. Its results determine the decennial redrawing of congressional districts

As a matter of impact, the census has tremendous political significance. Political parties are always eager to have a hand in redrawing districts so that they can maximize their own party’s clout while minimizing the opposition, often through gerrymandering.

The census also determines the composition of the Electoral College, which chooses the president. If one party were to control the census, it could arguably try to perpetuate its hold on political power.

The results of the census are also enormously important in another way — the allocation of federal funds. Theoretically, a political party could disproportionately steer federal funding to areas dominated by its own members through a skewing of census numbers.

At this point the White House doesn’t seem willing to say what Emanuel’s role will be in overseeing the census, and White House officials say census managers will work closely with top-level White House staffers, but will technically remain part of the Commerce Department.

But critics say the White House chief of staff can’t be expected to handle the census in a neutral manner. Emanuel ran the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee in the 2006 election, and he was instrumental in getting Democrats elected into the majority.

“The last thing the census needs is for any hard-bitten partisan (either a Karl Rove or a Rahm Emanuel) to manipulate these critical numbers. Many federal funding formulas depend on them, as well as the whole fabric of federal and state representation. Partisans have a natural impulse to tilt the playing field in their favor, and this has to be resisted,” Larry Sabato, the director of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia, told FOX News in an e-mail.

Critics note that the method of counting can skew the census. Democrats have long advocated using mathematical estimates, a practice known as “sampling,” to count urban residents and immigrants. Republicans say the Constitution requires a physical head count, which entails going door-to-door.

In 2000, Utah, which has three congressmen, was extremely close to landing a fourth House seat based on U.S. Census numbers, but the nation’s most conservative state fell short by a few hundred votes because the Census Bureau wouldn’t count Mormon missionaries from Utah serving temporarily overseas.

The GOP took the case to the U.S. Supreme Court, but was ultimately unsuccessful. Utah leaders had hoped the 2010 census would rectify the problem, but now worry that they will lose again if the census is managed by partisans.

When Obama nominated New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson to be commerce secretary — he was later forced to withdraw — he indicated that Richardson would be in charge of the census.

The decision to move the census into the White House was announced just days after Obama named New Hampshire Sen. Judd Gregg, a Republican, to be his commerce secretary. Gregg has long opposed “sampling” by the census and has voted against funding increases for the bureau.

Sabato said moving the census “in-house” will likely set up a situation where neither the Commerce Department nor the White House will know exactly what is going on in the Census Bureau. He said the process is “too critical to politics for both parties not to pay close attention.”

“I’ve always remembered what Joseph Stalin said: ‘Those who cast the votes decide nothing. Those who count the votes decide everything.’ The same principle applies to the census. Since one or the other party will always be in power at the time of the census, it is vital that the out-of-power party at least be able to observe the process to make sure it isn’t being stacked in favor of the party in power. This will be difficult for the GOP since I suspect Democrats will control both houses of Congress for the entire Obama first term,” Sabato said.

FOX News’ Bill Sammon and Shannon Bream contributed to this report.

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