Census Update III

I thought Census Update II was the end of the matter – but news came to me today I couldn’t resist sharing. (Note some minor details have been changed or omitted to protect the privacy of the innocent and prevent the identification of the lazy, misled or deluded – I do try to be fair while touting my perspective.  Sorry, government, agencies,  no sense in trying to rename you, because everyone knows who is in charge of the Census and any allusions would be a waste of time…)

Your tax dollars (and mine) paid for the following census drama at my friend’s house:

  • A mailed postcard announcing  her census will be coming soon.
  • Hand delivery of census to her doorstep by temporary census employee. (which was filled out and mailed in.)
  • A follow-up visit by census personnel, because apparently hers wasn’t received either. (That makes 2 lost from households located approximately 4 miles from each other.  On the flip side, I know people who received 2 and others who received none.) Since she wasn’t at home at the time,  a card was left, requesting a phone call from my friend between the hours of 9 and 3 on Thursday or Friday. (Which, she could not do, because Hey!  she’s one of the lucky ones who still has a job and is at work for her employer at that time.)

She called the number on Monday,  and said she was happy to ‘comply with the request for information’ but was working during the hours listed.  Could the interview be done now?

And here’s the response:

“Oh, I’ve been moved to work another district – I’ll pass on the information to my supervisor, but probably, by now, you can just never mind.”

Now, it’s important to my friend to be counted – she takes her civic duty seriously.  Even 0ver-zealous, personal door-to-door delivery, collection and confirmation has not prevented piss-poor mail delivery, Census Headquarters mail room sorting snafu’s,  mismanaged data entry (or retrieval) or some combination of the aforementioned – which all results in her household not being counted this go-around.

This grieves her.   (For those of you who don’t follow my blog, this friend is Ms. Capricorn-Bookkeeper.  Translation: All i’s and t’s are consistently dotted, crossed and completed in a responsible and cost-effective manner.    Our recent census  endeavor has violated many of her firm beliefs on how to properly get a project done.)

(I will add that overall, I’ve always been pleased with our Postal Service – however, counting my census, this incident and a letter that never made it’s destination in May, I’ve had close experience with ‘lost mail’ 3 times in the past months.   Strange, but true.)

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The preceding production brought to you by folks who want you to believe they can:

  • Design, Implement and Maintain a system to track all domestic animals and quickly isolate and destroy those who are diseased. (NAIS)
  • Design , Implement and Maintain a nationwide medical history database AND health care program.

Sorry, but you can’t even successfully or efficiently oversee a counting program.   Think I’ll wait for something better.

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