/* Just Say No. The American Community Survey
Send As SMS

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

More People Saying NO to ACS

Most people leave "anonymous" comments. (including yours truly, right here on my own Blog!) Awhile back "Alex" left me a comment and I just checked out his Blog— it has good stuff and is more up to date with comments than what you're reading right now. The format is better too— the "comments" scroll right after his post.

I remember how I felt when I received the ACS... I hope this link helps those who are searching.


At 4/04/2008 7:45 AM, Anonymous Russell Whitaker said...

My apologies to those of you here who are also posting to my own blog about the ACS: I’ve moved to a new city, am back in college, and just went heads-down for a few months. The thread “‘None of Your Business!': the American Community Survey” is back in business.

Keep up the good fight, folks!


At 4/19/2008 3:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just got one of these ACS "Surveys." Anyone who knows anything about Relational Database Management Systems knows that keeping your name in a "seperate" "encrypted" ffile or databse is no security at all. Basically, it means that data is kept in a secure or not table in another file that can be easily queried and merged by either Census personnel, private contractors like the private contractor the Census Bureau uses, or any other designate. The brochure that comes wiith this thing says that civil servant employees of the Census Bureau can be disciplined for security breaches. But, it says nothing about private contractor breaches who are not subject to civil service or Federal and State administrative regulations and laws. If some private agency operative screws up they just "fire" him/her from his position and he/she is transferred down the hall with an attaboy and a raise or maybe gets a job in the bush Administration or Halliburton, etc.

This is the beginning of US Final Solution light. Beware of the 11 Pm knock on the door from the Orwellians.

At 6/01/2008 12:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The ACS is a violation of our constitutional rights. I am twelve years old and my father recently received this ridiculous survey. He refused to make it out and received the first phone call from the ACS workers a half an hour ago. This is crazy!

At 6/01/2008 1:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

PLEASE HELP ME! I am trying desperately to be a good little sheep, but I'm hung up on question 17c (person 1), the one that asks whether I have trouble bathing or dressing. I asked my friendly government employee when he last called if the word "bathing" could be interpreted as "showering", as that is what I always do. Yes, I am aware that the dictionary definition of the word "bathe" does refer to cleansing oneself in a variety of ways. But, for the good of my community, I want to ensure that I answer the question correctly, as the government may have changed the definition of the word "bathe" recently. The friendly Census Bureau worker told me that he was not sure what the survey definition was, and was prohibited from offering an opinion because that would be against government regulations. He did say that he would be sure to suggest to his supervisor that a request be made to the Congress that a commitee be set up to study the question. That is great news indeed, because I for one, harbor no secret, evil desire to see my community harmed in any way. My good buddy from the federal government informed me that it would take about six years for the newly formed commitee to come to a conclusion as to the question of definition, and would cost approximately fifty to a hundred million dollars. My problem is that by that time I will have been in a federal prison for most of those six years for noncompliance with the government's orders. Does anybody out there have a solution for my dilemma? Oh my God, please respond immediately. There are two men knocking on my front door. They just showed up in their taxpayer purchased SUV, their taxpayer purchased self-importance, and their taxpayer purchased wardrobe. Nice jackboots, guys, and those gray shirts are just adorable.

At 6/02/2008 7:57 AM, Blogger T said...

I just got off the phone with someone from my Congressman's office. He said they get lots of complaints about the ACS but not enough to get momentum going during appropriation sessions. People we have to unite and all give our representatives a media blitz in order to make EVERYONE aware of what is going on. If EVERY senator and representative in the US Congress gets complaints then they will forced to change it. If you did not have to put your name and birth date on it and could opt in or out of the survey it would be more palatable as the need for certain information could help with financial allocations. But with your identity attached to all the info it smacks of a communistic regime.

At 6/03/2008 4:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just got an ACS last week and haven't filled it out yet. I already got a postcard urging me to return it soon. I noticed there is no return or deadline date. If I return it next month or next year how am I in violation? I am still returning it right?

At 6/04/2008 2:55 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Congressmen are going to do nothing about the ACS for a number of reasons. The number of people getting the ACS is so low at any given time to keep public outrage down. The CB has convinced elected officials that the info gathered by the ACS will help candidates to pander to their electorate during re-election. The CB has a Rapid Response Team to quell any unfavorable situations which wil increase the non-response rate.
To any new receipients of the ACS - there is no fine or violation for not returning the survey. The CB workers might suggest a fine, but no one has been fined for anything. The CB can't even prove that you even received the survey. If you move, the CB will bug the new residents. the best way to get rid of the survey is to increase the non-response rate.

At 6/26/2008 11:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well it is now June 2008 and i have been ignoring the ACS we got and have been harassed twice daily with phone calls. I know it's the Census bureau via caller ID and i won't answer.
I live in a small town and i'm hoping no one comes here. My husband is going for cancer surgery and i can't be bothered now. Idiots!

At 7/27/2008 11:16 AM, Anonymous Chris said...

I got the ACS survey a month ago or so. I just called them and told them I was not filling it out no matter what regardless of a penalty.
I told them because I see it as a violation of the 4th amendment and all the questions have nothing to do with the "Enumeration" (counting people) mentioned in Article I, Section 2 of the Constitution.

At 7/27/2008 11:24 AM, Anonymous Chris said...

By the way, when I firmly (but very politely) refused and asked them not to contact me again by phone or visit my home, basically cease and desist, they said they would put me down as "Refused to participate".

I called my Congressmen too. I got a favorable response from one Senator. They are registering by complaint with the Census Bureau.

Very interesting, we will see what happens.

At 8/22/2008 1:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am an old man, disabled and retired. I have been in and out of the hospital over the last 4 months at least 4 times ( one I believe should be charged to the American Community Survey). The day I was released (due heart problems) I was called by someone who "claimed" they were from the Census Bureau but they were listed as unknown by my caller ID. I have recieved several calls in this manner and I am serious.

As a taxpayer, a legal citizen (with a birth certificate) and a disabled american senior citizen I call others to help. Call your Congressmen, Senators, Representative and the United States District Attorneys office with complaints.

Eventually someone is going to take notice and we will get our justice.

I want to file a lawsuit for harrassment and additional charges.
I am wondering if anyone else has had similar experiences with the United States Cenus Bureau and the American Community Survey.

At 8/25/2008 3:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am not filling this crap out!!! This smacks of BIG BROTHER!!

At 8/29/2008 2:36 PM, Anonymous Janjo said...

This survey is a load of CRAP! There is no way Im filling this out. I also see on the census bureau website that they have increased their fine for refusing to reply to not more than $5000.00.
Im wondering if anyone themselves has been fined or knows of anyone who has been fined? Has onyone else noticed that about one third of the questions they ask is for information that the government already has just from you tax return? And the rest is just bullshit. Ive signed the petition, Im calling my congressman, but does anyone have any other suggestions? This has got to stop!

At 9/08/2008 6:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We received the ACS several months ago. I sat it aside as we are very busy, and I don't have a spare hour to fill out a lengthy survey. Then we received another one. I opened it up, and after looking it over, complained to my husband that it was very intrusive, and I was reluctant to fill it out. I'm not usually a paranoid type, but this was down right creepy. My husband, who is a lawyer, laughed it off until he sat down to work on it. He was shocked by all the very personal information it contained. Except for our Social Security Numbers, it contains all the information anyone would need to steal our identities! He filled it out, but have been reluctant to mail it. In the last week we have received two visits at our home from a census rep. (Whose salary we are apparently paying! Your tax dollars at work!) That makes me even more reluctant to mail it in.

At 9/08/2008 2:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We received the ACS a while ago; didn't respond. It's likely we've been called, but our phone blocks all calls that don't show caller ID.

Representative showed up a few minutes ago. She tried to tell me that the ACS was mandated in the Constitution, then showed me her brochure to "prove" it. Of course, the brochure cites part of the US Code; she apparently did not know the difference.

Also, she told me twice that there was no such response category as "Refused." Finally, however, as she left she told me that she would mark me "Refused." She also made a thinly veiled threat.

At 9/24/2008 7:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Until you people are willing to pick up your rifles and put your sense of freedom where your big mouth is, STFU. I hear all this clamor of `big brother' and intrusive, unconstitutional action by the government...but no one is willing to do anything but gripe. The only way this stops...THE ONLY WAY...is when blood is spilled. Until you are ready to stand and fight, and I do mean fight, expect more of this kind of thing. It will get worse...when will the camel's back snap? Never, if you so choose...

At 10/06/2008 2:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, we just got our first visit by one of these ACS clowns. I didn't answer the door. I never answer the door unless I am expecting someone. Over the past several months we received two copies of the "survey," I threw both straight into the rubbish, unopened. Since then we have received a couple of "reminder" postcards and probably phone calls too but I never answer calls labeled "restricted" or "unknown."

I find it astounding that they think they can attempt to prosecute someone named "resident."

We've been down this road before, though. In 2000 we were one of the "lucky" few who were "selected" to fill out the long, intrusive form of the census. We refused and eventually they left us alone.

I'm going to follow the good advice of the poster Chris who went "constitutional" on the census worker. I really hope the worker returns when my husband is at home and in the yard with our herd of German shepherds. Both the husband (who speaks little English and is physically imposing) and the dogs are violently territorial. That should scare them off, I think.
Damn, how it sucks to live in this country. My husband comes from a former communist nation and he says he never knew about the iron curtain until he found it right here in the good old USA. Pity!

BTW, THANK YOU so much for this blog/website. I didn't know where else to turn. It's good to know we are not alone. Hang in there, everyone!

At 10/06/2008 3:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I too am now experiencing this headache. I echo all of the privacy and Constitutional concerns of prior posters, as well as the technology-related security concerns (I am in IT). My wife filled out most of the survey but I refused to complete it and send it in. We have now received two forms and a packet left at the door by a local rep. Even worse, I realized from the business card that we know the field rep from our old neighborhood and I don't want to get into this with her, and I certainly don't want her to know how much we make, what time we leave for work, etc, so I don't want an interview in person or on the phone.

This is such an incredible violation that it just makes me sick, and I certainly don't trust the governments motives with recent wiretapping, Patriot Act, Homeland Security foibles, etc.

I decided to call the 800 number on the form, and today I spoke with a supervisor in Seattle. She recommended that I complete as much information as I am willing to provide on the survey, and that "it is [my] right" not to enter my name on the form. She advised me not to try calling in a refusal, because the computer system the case handlers use will just keep generating followup requests based on the softwares unfulfilled "need" to answer every question.

I recorded the conversation with the consent of the supervisor, and have posted it to Youtube here:

So, I've decided to fill out the survey anonymously with the basic, required census info (Resident A, B, C) and send it in.


At 11/03/2008 5:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

No longer are they addressed to resident. Our name was on the form.

I was ill when he caught me at the doorway. Used laptop to record the N/A answers. Said I would be contacted again due to incomplete responses. Informed him that I was done...no additional info is forthcoming. I answered how many were living in the home.

Threatened me saying that this survey is mandatory and I have no choice. Called Washington and was told that they will look into it.

Big brother...good grief!

At 11/13/2008 5:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

these nazi goons have been to my house 4 times now. on each visit i ignore them. 2 surveys and one letter, asking for my cooperation. cooperation? i pay taxes, that is enough cooperation, and i will not give in to these thugs.

At 11/13/2008 7:27 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Freedom is alive and well here. The nazi,federal goon is still trying to force/scare me. ain't going to happen. live free or DIE

At 12/02/2008 4:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i did not answer. the stooge returned to my house 7 times and i refused to answer any of his questions. my statement was "i am a free born man"; go away and stop stalking me. i have the right to be left alone.

At 12/09/2008 9:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We received an ACS long form a couple of weeks ago and threw it out as junk mail. Then another came and we are shocked at the intrusion and invasion of our privacy. These questions, such as my personal relationships and number of times married are NOT in the Constitution. And since when can they violate the DECENNIAL requirement and send these out every year to hundreds of thousands? This violates the 4th, 9th, and 10th amendments.
We have now received two phone calls. I advised one of the callers that I was an adult male about the age of 16, my name and the address of my residence. She said I was refusing to participate and I told her I was participating, only so far as required in Article 1 Sec. 2 of the U.S. Constitution. And I might just say next time call me in 2010 when you're supposed to. But all this has me terrified. I am on chemo therapy and this is NOT right!

At 1/11/2009 7:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just filled it out. I really didn't think it was all that bad, and none of the questions required me to disclose anything that I would care about telling a stranger on the bus.

Seriously, I don't understand the vitriol here.

At 1/18/2009 1:43 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

You don't understand the vitriol, because you don't value privacy. While you don't mind telling strangers on a bus your business, you don't get to criticize others for wanting to retain as mush privacy as they can. Further, I don't want to listen to people on busses who like to "share" their business. Shut up already!

At 1/23/2009 6:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The back of the survey says "Respondents are not required to respond to any information collection unless it displays a valid approval number from the Office of Management and Budget. This 8-digit number appears in the bottom right on the front cover of this form."

Well, I just Googled up my number and it appears expired. Does that mean I'm no longer required to respond?

OMB NO: 0607-0810 EXPIRATION DATE: 05/31/2008
RESPS:3,160,610 HOURS:1,917,410 COSTS(000):$0
The American Community Survey

At 1/25/2009 6:50 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

You were never really required to respond. The "manditory" and "required by law" is used to gain your cooperation; to scare you into answering the questions.

At 2/02/2009 4:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I received The American Community Survey from the U.S. Department of Commerc; so it says. It is a government agency? Well, then why would they need to know so many answers to so many questions? The government knows a lot. The form is 28 pages long. It ranges from date of birth to welfare to location of work. Seriously, I am NOT going to fill this sht out! It is a survey which by law are optional. I am opting out to not fill it out. If I was on walfare, they would already know! They know the location of my employment from my filing my annual income tax, and lastly; they know my date of birth because I am a US citizen. Geeze! They don't need my survey help, the just need to combine their databases and they can generate their own survey. Plus! A true survey would be sent to 100% of the people to gather an accurate toll. It stated that I was randomly selected. A survey pole will not be acruate if they are leaving most of the people out of it. DON'T FILL IT OUT AND WRITE STOP WASTING TREES AND GAS on the form and mail it back. That is what I am going to do. :)

At 2/19/2009 7:54 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I received this survey over a month ago It came in the mail while I was in the hospital for the birth of our second child. I set it off to the side because I am a Stay home mother with a 2 year old and newborn and didn't have time to open it. Well I got to the junk mail pile about a week ago and opened the thing and was shocked by the questions and the length of the survey. I started to fill it out but didn't feel safe sending it in. I'm the parinoid type always afraid of identity theft I guess that comes from working in a bank all of my employed years. I have since received a post card in the mail but that is it. Maybe if they send me a new survey I will fill it out and leave our names off of it.

At 2/25/2009 9:15 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

what happens if they come to your door banging and you don't open the door, but just bang back?

At 2/26/2009 10:36 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

I didn't answer the phone calls or open the door to the field reps. I pretended that I just wasn't home. I had 2 field reps trying to catch me and they failed.

At 2/27/2009 6:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

All of you criminals out there need to stop your nefarious activity! Especially you, cathy.

"Required by law" is NOT a scare tactic. It is the law and you must comply. If you do not comply, then you are a law-breaking criminal.

Not only that, but you are also jeopardizing the lives of law-abiding citizens who know their rights.

By refusing to answer, you are inviting further tyranny.

Now that I have your attention and you are fuming mad because I just told you where the rubber meets the road, listen up because I am going to explain why your ignorance, servitude, and inept defiance are harmful.

Only criminals and tyrants break the law. How will you ever stop tyranny by becoming a criminal? You won't. You are only feeding the machine.

Just because the government can legally require you to answer, does not mean that you must give up your rights. It only means that you must supply an answer.

You have many unalienable rights, a few of which are RE-STATED in the Bill of Rights.

So, if the answer to an intrusive question IS "Fourth Amendment Objection", then say so. Throwing out the form is a violation of Federal Law for crying out loud. It is also an ignorant and childish act.It has no redeeming qualities and only shows that you are so undeserving of the respect due a sovereign citizen, that you should be subject to such treatment to begin with.

Hiding, whining, throwing temper tantrums, and evading your obligations are acts of a slave. That is why you are being treated like one. Learn your rights, assert your rights, stop acting like a bondservent, and start acting like the master to your servent government.

At 2/28/2009 9:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The government is the criminal and we have the right to rebel - even to overthrow them. They now want to take our 2nd amendment rights away. Our Free Speech rights away. They already took our smoking rights away - NANNY STATE IS HERE - get off your high horse, you toad.

At 2/28/2009 9:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

One more thing - filling out forms is a form of "work." Why aren't they paying us? Administrative Assistants earn between $12-25 an hour and it takes 38 minutes they say to fill it out. If we fill it out, we're performing clerical, administrative work. How about they pay us?

At 2/28/2009 3:28 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

To the anonymous who said that "it is the law"..... Ha! It is not the law. The use of the manditory on the ACS was allowed by the subcommittee which oversees the CB to increase the response rate. You have a lot of reading to do to catch up to where I am with info on this subject. I AM NOT REQUIRED TO ANSWER!!! It is not my duty to answer. The only whiner is you and others who are CB supporters, marketers and stakeholders. There is NO law which requires me to read my mail, answer my phone or open my door. So get over yourself. Call me any names you want, it won't change my opinion of the CB and its surveys. I don't need the gov using private info to act as a middle man to dispense funds to my community or for anything else it decides to do. Your argument in support of the ACS is just as lame and flimsy as others I have read.

At 3/23/2009 5:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I started filling this out - I wanted to be a good American. I began feeling more and more uncomfortable. Now it is sitting on my coffee table - mostly complete. It has been sitting there for a month. This information is TOO personal to send in the mail. This is really scary. I can't believe it's legal!

At 3/30/2009 7:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I received an ACS last week.

It will NOT be filled out, I will NOT speak to these intruders on the phone and I will kindly ask anyone that decides they need to pay me a visit in person to coerce me to join in this unconstitutional exercise to leave my premises.

I consider myself and my family to be civic minded and all-American, but this has to stop.

Thanks for the blog and allowing me to vent.

At 4/20/2009 5:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting. Just got my second notification. Against the law to not respond... Went to OMB website and looked up this form, OMB no. 0607-0810, and it expired, 05/31/2008. Called the number, 1-800-354-7271 and talked with a call handler who spoke to their supervisor for about 3 minutes. They first offered to send me a new "updated," form. Then said they were aware of the issue - expired form and they were working the issue. Let if at, the supervisor would give me a call back. My understanding of OMB forms is, if they are used past the expiration date, they are not valid anymore. Will be happy to comply with "law." They must too.

At 4/20/2009 6:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Under the Paperwork Reduction Act, as amended, an agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a valid OMB control number."

At 4/20/2009 6:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is the significance of an expired Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Control Number? The answer is found in the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq. That act created the OMB control number system and sets forth the consequences of not having a valid, i.e unexpired, OMB Control Number. Section 3512 states:

Public protection
(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information that is subject to this subchapter if--

(1) the collection of information does not display a valid control number assigned by the Director in accordance with this subchapter; or

(2) the agency fails to inform the person who is to respond to the collection of information that such person is not required to respond to the collection of information unless it displays a valid control number.

(b) The protection provided by this section may be raised in the form of a complete defense, bar, or otherwise at any time during the agency administrative process or judicial action applicable thereto.

44 U.S.C. 3512

At 5/31/2009 6:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I didn't serve 23 years in the military for this shit! I am not filling it out and if they try to fine me, I am not paying. If they want to put me in jail that's fine. I think everyone should decline to fill this damn thing out and let's fill the jails. Maybe they will send us to GITMO. That place will be empty because they will let the terrorist go to make room for theU.S. Citizens that didn't fill out their surveys.

At 6/19/2009 9:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I received an ACS. I have two homes and had received one last year at my northern home. I didn't send it in, but told the census people who called me that I did. They kept calling and wanted me to fill it out again. I told them to go jump in a lake and blamed it on their fellow government agency, the post office.

A few weeks ago, I received an ACS at my southern home. Know that they would be calling, I refused to answer any calls from the census bureau. They got wise to that and start calling from and anonymous 1-800 number. They have even called from an non 1-800 number. They call 3 or 4 times a day. Its really strange that they mail this thing out to RESIDENT, but they have my phone number.

At 6/27/2009 7:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

OMB NO: 0607-0810 EXPIRATION DATE: 05/31/2008
RESPS:3,160,610 HOURS:1,917,410 COSTS(000):$0
The American Community Survey

This is the survey OMB Number. Notice that the OMB has expired.

At 6/28/2009 6:28 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Privacy Act Statement and Paperwork Reduction Act Notice

This notice is given under the Privacy Act of 1974 and the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. The Privacy Act and Paperwork Reduction Act requires that the Internal Revenue Service inform businesses and other entities the following when asking for information.
The information on this form will carry out the Internal Revenue laws of the United States. We will comply with Internal Revenue Code (IRC) section 6109 and the regulations hereunder, which generally require the inclusion of an Employer Identification Number (EIN) on certain returns, statements, or other documents filed with the Internal Revenue Service. Information on this form may be used to determine which Federal tax returns are required to file and to provide related forms and publications. This Form will be disclosed to the Social Security Administration for their use in determining compliance with applicable laws. An EIN will not be issued unless you provide all of the requested information, which applies to your entity.
Respondents should be aware that notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information if it does not display a valid OMB control number. Books or records relating to a form or its instructions must be retained as long as their contents may become material in the administration of any Internal Revenue law. Generally, tax returns and return information are confidential, as required by IRC section 6103.

At 7/01/2009 4:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My response to Jason on Huffington Post. He was berating Bachmann. He thought she was talking about the constitutional census.

Wake up, she's talking about the American Community Survey. NOT THE CONSTITUTIONAL CENSUS........... Take a look at it on the census web site and give ME all the data they are looking for... What the hell, YOU HAVE NOTHING TO HIDE. RIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

Give me all the info they are looking for... Send me a reply and I will give you my address. You can use the United States Post Office for this correspondence as the chain of custody, I'm sure you will have no problem with, as the security of this method is without reproach.

I know for a fact you will not respond to my E-mail,,I'll guarantee it. BCC To all my friends so they can see you have no response. I have a suspicion you haven't even read the ACS.

If you have observed the ACS and still think this is perfectly within the bound of unreasonable search then what 's left to say....

P.S If this is sworn testimony as it would be under the penalties of perjury and you wanted to claim the fifth, you can, provided you pay the government $5,000.00. You can have fifth amendment right as long as you bring your check book,,,,what kind of right is that???

P.P.S. I think you need to hit the books

At 7/01/2009 4:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The purpose of government is for those who run it to plunder those who do not. Throughout history, governments have used violence, intimidation, coercion, and mass murder to enforce this system. But governments' first line of "defense" is always a blizzard of lies - about its own alleged benevolence, altruism, heroism, and greatness, along with equally big lies about the "evils" of the civil society, especially the free market.

The current economic crisis, which was instigated by the government's central bank and its boom-and-bust monetary policies, among other interventions, has once again been blamed on "too little regulation" and too much freedom.

Will Americans ever catch on to this biggest of all of government's Big Lies?

At 7/02/2009 11:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A few months ago they (census agents) came and GPS'd my front door and then I was at my rural cabin and in comes another one of their agents, right past private signs and he GPS'd the front door area. I asked him what he was up to, already knowing what was going on at this point and he admitted he was GPS'ing me. He said he was uncomfortable doing it, but then said , "they know where you're at so I guess it doesn't really matter". I told him what I thought about that and he ended up agreeing that it didn't seem right. Of course he went off to GPS others. At this point this information will be available to anyone in the world--friend or foe. That's what hacking is all about.

Now I have been chosen as one of the 1 in 40,000 to be questioned in the American Community Survey. This is not right. Everyone must refuse to do it--period. No good will come of it. I don't mind telling them how many people live in my house--but that's about it. I think knowing how many people live in a country is an OK thing, but again, that's about as far as I want the government to go. We are being set-up for something and I for one have an uneasy feeling about all of this.

At 7/19/2009 10:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just received my second survey a few days ago. To hell with it, I will not fill it out. The degree of intrusion presented by the rediculous questions is insane. How does what time I leave for work have any relevance. If I put down one time and am late afterwards is that perjury?

At 7/28/2009 6:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I chose the path of avoidance but in hind site it may have been easier to say %^$#^%$ off!!
O.K. I think I have been through just a bout the whole process now.
The time will be 3 months with the beginning of August.
Month 1:
First a survey.
Then a card explaining why.
Then another survey.
Month 2:
The a many phone calls up to 9PM at night including Sundays. Only one call per day.
Month 3:
One known visit - not home much lately so may have been more.
Phone call directly from visitor.
Letter from Supervisor warning of another visit. Can't wait ;)

At 7/30/2009 8:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Under current law there is a $5000 fine for refusing to answer.
Happily HR-3131 would remove all penalties for refusing to answer. You can see the bill at thomas.loc.gov. Type in HR-3131 in the search window and click "bill number".
Contact your congress-critter and urge him to cosponsor HR-3131

At 8/10/2009 12:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The ACS is a clear violation of Amendment 4 of the Constitution - as upheld by the Supreme Court in 1967 in Katz v. the United States. If Census personnel call you simply ask them for their name, then ask them for their home address, then ask them for their home phone number, number of females in their home and what time the males leave to go to work. If they resist, tell them you won't release the information to anyone. If they won't give you an answer then tell them the conversation is over and hang up.

Remember, men have spilled their blood on the fields of battle to protect us from tyranny of this sort. This is just the first step the U.S. government is taking to completely take over our lives and when we die.

At 8/27/2009 12:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

HR-3131: Latest Major Action: 8/19/2009 Referred to House subcommittee. Status: Referred to the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties.

Please contact your congress-persons and urge them to cosponsor this bill.

At 8/27/2009 12:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If I'm required to answer every question, I can say the answer out loud to each question and send the form back. I answered every question. It's a funny technicality but I doubt it will work.

I saw someone else add "none of your business" to the list of answers and mark that one. The question is answered and it's recorded on the form. I can play the technicalities game all day.

The problem is that what really needs to happen is that the law needs to change either through legislation or court case. But who's going to do that? I saw mention of HR-3131, but I looked that up and saw the following title "To make available on the Internet, for purposes of access and retrieval by the public, certain information available through the Congressional Research Service web site". Uh, that sounds worse, not better. Exactly where in that bill is the fine removed? I couldn't see it.

At 8/28/2009 8:47 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

The fine wasn't removed. Title 13 and 18 were not intended to apply to the ACS but to the actual census. The CB is allowed by the congressional subcommittee to threaten a fine but not to impose a fine. Should someone actually be fined, a court challenge will expose this whole scam and the CB doesn't want a constitutional challenge. No one have been fined for failing to respond to the census since the 1960's. The survey is sent to a chosen residence. If you move during the process, the harassment is transferred to the new occupant. The ACS is sent to about 250,000 residences per month. The CB states that it has a 95% response rate, which is a lie. The true response rate is somewhere between 50-60%. Even is we believe that only 5% are non-responders, that means that every month 12,500 (or 150,000/yr) residences would be eligible for fines. The gov can't even do cash for clunkers, so don't worry about any fines.

At 8/28/2009 3:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just received my first long form and I will not fill it out. In fact I hope I have a visitor from ACRON. I cannot express the anger I have at this moment. I don't have anything beneficial to add to this forum on how to avoid this violation of privacy, I just wanted to speak my mind. Sometimes I think I might have to die for this county because of the elitist SOBs that will not leave us alone.

At 8/28/2009 6:28 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My husband and I are law abiding, tax paying citizens of the United States of America (not some Communist/Socialist country) who just received this "survey". This is so utterly intrusive it makes us sick! No one should fill this out! See the 4th Ammendment to the Constitution! Bring it on, ACORN, we're ready for you!

At 8/31/2009 9:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You fucking nazi assholes better fill out that survey. Or are you only fake patriots when Republican traitors are stinking up the White House.

Perhaps you'd prefer a country that shares your ideology...like Somolia, or Yemen. Move there.

At 9/01/2009 5:11 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

Dear swearing anonymous,
There's a little thing called the Constitution which is being violated by the CB and this survey. Maybe you should read it unless it is beyond your intelligence to understand it. And by the by, it's the Dems who support the ACS more and it was created under the Clinton administration. Only a few republicans have spoken out against the ACS.

At 10/06/2009 4:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not anti-government by any means. In fact, a close family member works for the federal government. And I'm a Democrat and Obama supporter.

But ACS is ridiculous. I actually tried to fill it out when I first got it. Then I saw how much they were asking for--the sheer amount AND the level of detail. It was like doing my taxes again.

I don't mind giving them the basics, but this is ridiculous.

The fine (if it's ever been enforced, which is questionable) is $100, not $5,000. And to impose it, they would have to charge a person, not an address. If you give no information, they don't know who lives there. They can't charge the homeowner, because the home might be rented out.

I ignored the survey and its follow-up letters and the biddy with the laptop who showed up on our porch. Finally I called from a payphone and (without giving my name--only my address) told them I refuse to participate. That was the last of it.

At 10/14/2009 2:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

About 7 weeks into my ACS ride.
Two forms sent and two reminder mailings. Many, many phone calls which I ignore. Next up I suppose is 'the visit' at which time I'll give a firm 'NO'. I considered the direct approach of simply calling the 800 number or responding to the first phone call but I think it's more productive to tie-up the minions with attempts to contact me for as long as possible.

Thanks for the blog.

- General McAuliffe

At 10/20/2009 8:11 AM, Anonymous hubert said...

Before the nice lady at the ACS hung up, she informed me that I had been listed as refusing to answer the survey.
We may decide to not answer the survey and in doing so we are breaking the law. I honestly don't think that the Office of Management and Budget are trying to become "BIG BROTHER", they just love to collect information thinking that it will help the under privileged. In doing so they are encouraging "BIG GOVERNMENT".
A 2008 statement by Susan E. Dudley, Administrator, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs U.S. Office of Management and Budget before a subcommittee about "Does Federal Statistical Data Adequately Serve People Living with Disabilities?", provides some insight into the thinking. She gave high praise to the ACS and makes it clear that the ACS has replaced the Decennial Census long form and will provide data annually, rather than only once a decade. Her goal is to focus on the non-institutionalized population ages 18 and over for the health status and including obesity, risk behaviors such as smoking and alcohol use, insurance coverage, and access to health care.
I noted that lack of insurance coverage has now been lumped into a category with smoking and drinking as a bad thing. The question then becomes do we have the freedom to do things that are bad for us? And how far should we let government go in enforcing this.
After reading the statement on the back of the form, and checking out approval number from the Office of Management and Budget, OMB No. 0607-0810 I discovered that it had expired on 5/31/2008.
OMB NO: 0607-0810 EXPIRATION DATE: 05/31/2008 RESPS:3,160,610 HOURS:1,917,410 COSTS(000):$0 The American Community Survey FORMS: ACS-1 ACS-1SP ACS-1PR ACS- 1PR(SP) ACS-290 ACS-1GQ ACS-4GQ

At 10/20/2009 12:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey genius, 5/31/2008 is the date that the form received OMB approval, not the date that the approval expired.

At 10/20/2009 1:41 PM, Anonymous Hubert said...

Not that it is a big deal, but why does it say "EXPIRATION DATE:05/31/2008" instead of APPROVAL DATE?

At 10/20/2009 1:42 PM, Anonymous Hubert said...

Why The American Community Survey will fail
There are two flaws in the system, ACS data becomes less reliable for small geographic areas.
In a Statement of Linda Jacobsen, vice president, Domestic Programs, Population Reference Bureau, before the Joint Economic Committee, U. S. Congress, July 21, 2009, she explained some differences between the census long form and the ACS. Foremost was the fact that the sample size of the current ACS is much smaller. As a result, ACS data from multiple years must be combined to provide reliable estimates for geographic areas with smaller population sizes. The ACS provides 1-year estimates for areas with populations of at least 65,000, 3-year estimates for areas with populations between 20,000 and 65,000, and 5-year estimates for areas with less than 20,000 people. This last group, the first 5-year estimates for 2005-2009 are schedule for release in 2010. She made it clear that without additional funding the ACS could not provide the detail data desired. More funding will be required to keep up with the changes in population. This is one more project that has a runaway budget.
With more information requested each year, they will not be able to convince the public to provide all the personal information. In Linda Jacobsen's statement, 15 million addresses were surveyed resulting in only 10.5 million final interviews. Or about 1 in 9 households responded to the survey. If you look over the questions asked you can see why, take question number 2: How is this person related to the owner of the house. If this is an adopted child and they do not want it known, how are they going to answer? How about question number 6: What is this person's race? The first choice is White, the only White people I have seen are albinos. We have mixed marriages in our family with children, how could they answer this question and what difference would it make anyway? America is a melting pot for the races. What are they looking for with questions like this? Is it anybody business how many vehicles are kept at this house? If they want to know the electric bill, why don't they talk to the utility company? I believe the people that receive Food Stamps would not be willing to share that information. Do they seriously think that if someone is living in a rental without paying rent they would admit it. Then they want you to do an appraisal of your home! I guess when people fill out all the questions about expenses they may realize that they are in over their heads!
For a family of four, there are 213 very personal questions on the form. And my favorite question is number 47 for each person, What was your income and where did it come from. I bet the IRS would love to get their hands on this one. Make a mistake here and guess who will be knocking at your door next.

At 10/21/2009 10:43 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

Hubert, there are lots of flaws inherent in the ACS including the thinking behind its creation. The sample size and response rate have long concerned the data users. The CB hides the raw data so that the limitations of the data can be kept away from scrutiny. On top of that, a group of intellectually challenged pseudo-scientists think they can interpret the info gained from the survey to formulate meaningful conclusions about the public to publish papers.

At 10/22/2009 8:35 AM, Anonymous Hubert said...

Cathy, you are right on the money. Lets hope that they don't decide to start collecting the $5,000 fines. Of course 4.5 million people paying $5,000 would only come to $22.5 million, which would not but much of a dent in the debt.

At 10/22/2009 10:07 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

They didn't impose fines when the public outrage and noncompliance over the 2000 longform caused the creation of the ACS. The worry was that the public would not want to answer the next census. The subcommittee which oversees the CB allowed the mandatory and the fine threat as a way of improving the response rate with the stipulation that no fines would be imposed. The CB wants and needs the public to cooperate; public outrage thwarts their efforts. Read the language used. It was all tested on the public and evaluated as which provided the most leverage to get compliance. If they wanted to impose fines, the language would have been different. Also, they would have to prove that the residence actually received the survey. Remember, the survey is tied to the address, not the resident. If the resident moves during the process, the target is still that address. So any new occupants would get the harassment.

At 10/31/2009 11:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

§ 221. Refusal or neglect to answer questions; false answers

Title 13 of the US Code as currently published by the US Government reflects the laws passed by Congress as of Jan. 5, 2009, and it is this version that is published here.

(a) Whoever, being over eighteen years of age, refuses or willfully neglects, when requested by the Secretary, or by any other authorized officer or employee of the Department of Commerce or bureau or agency thereof acting under the instructions of the Secretary or authorized officer, to answer, to the best of his knowledge, any of the questions on any schedule submitted to him in connection with any census or survey provided for by subchapters I, II, IV, and V of chapter 5 of this title, applying to himself or to the family to which he belongs or is related, or to the farm or farms of which he or his family is the occupant, shall be fined not more than $100.
(b) Whoever, when answering questions described in subsection (a) of this section, and under the conditions or circumstances described in such subsection, willfully gives any answer that is false, shall be fined not more than $500.
(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of this title, no person shall be compelled to disclose information relative to his religious beliefs or to membership in a religious body.

At 10/31/2009 2:00 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Yeah, whatever, anonymous. You missed the part where title 13 was amended to up the the fine. Bottom line is that including the ACS questions under the umbrella of the title 13 code is flimsy at best. I want to see a court challenge as to the constitutionality of the ACS. Title 13 doesn't scare me and shouldn't scare anyone else. No one was fines for failing to answer the longform questions back in 2000. Title 13 wasn't enforced then.

At 11/01/2009 8:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cathy, this wasn't posted to scare anybody, or was it to articulate my opinion of it. Your Yeah, whatever, anon is a little harsh and off point.

If I missed the part where title 13 was amended then post it here..or drop a link.. They are expanding the law under commerce which is no surprise to me. "Ya know flimsy at best" As far as any court challenge, you need to take a deep breath,,,it will never happen. In case you haven't noticed over the last
twenty years the judicial system in this country has been hijacked, so I say, good luck with that..

I also will not data collect for the ACS. Does that give you a hint what side I'm on.

Next time don't be so quick to pull the trigger, when your in a dark room..

Wars have begun this way..

Wrap text off Post 2

At 11/02/2009 5:17 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

You didn't state that when you posted.. The increased fine was written to increase the leverage to get the surveys returned. It is discussed on many other sites. Sorry you thought that my response was harsh. It did get you to clarify your point. When I'm being harsh there is little doubt. It's quite obvious. Think of the whatever as more of a sigh than a shove it.

At 11/02/2009 10:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It did get you to clarify your point.

Alright, let's stop with the bullshit, I'm not going to hyperventilate over your aggressive watermark limits. If you have data points you want to disseminate, then POST LINKS to them, or should I take your word for it.

Mark this thread closed!!!

At 11/02/2009 12:18 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Title 18 section 3571 amended title 13 section 221 by changing the fine from not more than $100 to not more than $5000. Certainly don't take my word for it. I encourage all to do their own research. It seems by your anger that you appear to be more of the CB supporter type than the gee, I got the ACS and don't like it type. Since you found tile 13, I.m sure you can find title 18.

At 11/12/2009 4:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I will always cherish the initial misconceptions I had about you.

At 12/08/2009 1:41 AM, Anonymous dating website said...

we love your blog postings, so well add your rss or news feed for them, Thanks and please post us and leave a comment back and well link to you. Thanks Jen dating website.

At 1/02/2010 10:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I received two mailings of the survey and two phone calls so far.

When called I responded (by law) by stating that per the US Constitution the census is for the purposes of enumeration -- that means for counting people. So I stated that four people live at this residence.

Please don't be intimidated into submission.

I wait for our first at home visit with great expectation. I am happy to answer one and only one question. "How many people live at this residence?"

That is it and nothing else.

Be strong. Are you an American citizen? If so you are a sovereign person. This means a great deal. When THEY know YOU know, they have nothing to stand on.

God Bless America.

Jerry - Prescott, Arizona

At 1/18/2010 4:53 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We have been through all the usual calls and visits. We were finally home when the guy came again and he admitted there is no fine. So just don't worry about it. I think it is better to just be upfront with the people that you are not going to answer the questions. Period.

At 1/28/2010 9:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

From the Supreme Court-

“Neither branch of the legislative department [House of Representatives or Senate], still less any merely administrative body [insert Census Bureau], established by congress, possesses, or can be invested with, a general power of making inquiry into the private affairs of the citizen. Kilbourn v. Thompson, 103 U.S. 168, 190.

As cited in-Interstate Commerce Commission v. Brimson, 154 U.S. 447, 479 (May 26, 1894)

At 1/28/2010 9:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Never refuse to give the info...that falls into the penalty provision...craft a response that avoids giving the info.

At 1/29/2010 11:37 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

Too late! I already refused to answer and will do so again. No one has been prosecuted for failing to answer the census questions since the 1960's. Any prosecution would result in that individual having standing with the court to sue the CB for invasion of privacy, which the CB wants to avoid.

At 1/29/2010 11:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We just got ours. Gave them exactly what Article 1, Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution requires that we give: the number of people living in this house.

At 2/14/2010 6:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cathy is right about the new occupants getting harrassed...I'm the new occupant, and the ACS was the first piece of mail delivered.
The ACS reads more like a Home Invasion Targeting Survey.

At 2/18/2010 8:20 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A Census field rep comes to my house daily and rings the doorbell incessantly, then pounds on the door for 20 minutes. She leaves a business card with a note attached almost every day stating how important it is that I answer the survey because “neighborhood tax dollars spent depend on your survey”. So far, I have 11 business cards, and 7 notes. She’s visited 7 times over the last 6 days that I know of.

2/18/10 – She rings the doorbell @0759hrs, and continues until 0810hrs. I get a call @ 0850, caller ID tells me it’s my ex-wife, and she tells me she got a call from Ann Bambrough (census field rep)asking for my phone number. My ex explains that we are divorced, and that I no longer live there. Mrs. Bambrough says “Really?” then tells my ex my new address. So much for confidentiality.

At 2/20/2010 3:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am being harassed by the ACS. I filled out the form even though I thought it was way to personal,and told them so when they called the first time. They told me they needed the info for various reasons. I told them I would not give them the info again over the phone and if my personal info is lost out there somewhere,I am very upset about it! Now they call me everyday at least once and up to three times. What do I do? I have stopped answering my home phone.

At 2/21/2010 8:09 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

Filling out the form does not protect the resident from further intrusion. The CB will call to "verify" the answers and in doing so, will ask more questions. The are screening for "target" situations to study. The calls will stop and they will go away. The people who work for the CB are aggressive and manipulative people who don't care about privacy or constitutional rights. You can tell them to get lost or you can wait them out. You will not be fined. The fine threat is used as leverage to get people scared enough to answer the survey.

At 2/21/2010 9:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

When the ACS people visit me, I'm going to open the door in the nude and see how they react. They want private info? I'll give 'em private parts in the privacy of my home! :)

At 3/04/2010 9:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I called my Congressman's office today, and the polite moron that answered the phone, said that only "2 other people" had called on this issue. Yeah, right. I live in a city and county of close to 500,000 people, who voted for McCain, btw, so, yeah, bullshit ignorant liberal answering the phone.

He said it was "required by law to answer this, and the FBI might contact me" if I don't. I'm not kidding, this jerk actually implied a threat to me that the FBI might get involved, if I failed to respond to this. Can anyone say, NAZI?!

He also said in the next sentence he couldn't give legal advice. Dumb fu*k.

These bastards who answer the phones in Congressional offices are clearly 20-something idiots, who have no more clue than their bosses.

I can read the Constitution, and I am NOT responding to this ACS survey. These monkeys trained by the CB, if they had a life, would be working a 'real' job. This long-form garbage was a part of the 2000 census, and now they have moved it into a new dept thinking that if they threaten Americans with the law, fines, harrassing calls, etc., that they can just intimidate people into compliance.

bullshit...this is NOT the Soviet Union, and the state can go screw themselves off a god dammit cliff.

Just don't answer your phone, don't answer the door, and to hell with them. I will answer the census, tell them how many people live here, and that's it.

At 3/12/2010 6:35 PM, Blogger angel said...

If I were to wager a guess at why, I’d say that users don’t “browse” forms. The interaction style users engage in with forms is different, and requires its own study and design best practices. This is a very interesting post, and the comments are also fantastic to read. I’ll have poses to have a little re-think about my own contact form on our new website, as this some interesting questions!
study abroad

At 3/17/2010 8:35 PM, Blogger Suzanne said...

Guys, I agree with the spirit of your objections. But the courts decided nearly fifty years ago that supplemental questionnaires to the census were constitutional. See USA vs. Rickenbacker, here:


At 3/18/2010 5:19 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

The court decided based upon that specific challenge. There needs to be a new challenge base upon the 10th amendment.

At 3/22/2010 6:40 PM, Blogger Beth Niquette said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 3/22/2010 6:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

By the way, in the last letter I received from the Census Bureau--the one that says I must fill out the American Community Survey or face punishment, also says (on the back of the load of paperwork they sent) that after the 2010 census, the American Community Survey will be taking the place of the Census Long Form.


At 3/22/2010 7:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We have been through the month of intimidating mail, the month of harrassing phone calls and phone messages which say we now have a case number.

Then just a week and a half ago we received a letter from the Commerce Department/Census Bureau saying we will have a rep on our doorstep if we don't turn the thing in.

I called Lars Larson's national talk show and aired my complaints about the ACS. He agreed the tactis used by the Census Bureau are totally intimidating and threating.

I hope people out there who heard me, who feel alone, know they aren't. There are a lot of us out there who aren't giving in.

VERY IMPORTANT: If the government actually tries to fine you, they have to get an order to do so through the Justice Department. If this happens to you, call the Rutherford Institute. They defend innocent people from unjust government action, free of charge.

I spoke with one of their lawyers on the phone. They are just waiting for a test case--the man we spoke with seemed very interested to hear my husband and I have been given a case number.

There are powerful people out there who are willing to fight for us. Thank God.

At 3/22/2010 8:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This last letter says they have to have the information on me from the American Community Survey by some kind of deadline--that's the first time I've heard of a deadline.

Too bad ya creeps!

At 3/22/2010 8:39 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Case number is just to frighten you. The rep at your door is just the 3rd phase of the harassment. The CB has deadlines for each of the phases so that they know to pass the non-responder to the next phase. The whole thing takes about 90 days and then they go away.

At 3/22/2010 10:31 PM, Blogger Beth Niquette said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 3/22/2010 10:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, Cathy. The Rutherford Institute has been fielding calls about the American Census Survey since 2005.

The case number was a new tactic he hadn't heard yet.

He said we didn't have to worry about anything unless they actually get paperwork signed by the Justice Office for an actual fine. Until then, no one has yet to be actually prosecuted or fined.

The Bureau is using intimidation and empty threats to try to get what they want.

Because "It is so important" to them.

I thank you for your website.

At 3/23/2010 5:22 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

The case number thing has been used in phone messages for the second phase. One is to refer to the case number when calling the CB back. The topic and others were posted on Survival Arts, which has disappeared.

At 3/28/2010 11:24 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In January we received the American Community Survey. This is in ADDITION to the 10-question census form. The census and this survey are two different things. People don’t know about it, so when I mention the ACS, they think I’m talking about the simple 10 question census.

If you were to fill out all the on the American Community Survey, disregarding the numbering of the form, you would be filling out 272 questions—including personal and invasive questions about up to five people—even if they’re not family. If you were a couple filling out their information, disregarding their numbering system, you would be filling out 121 intrusive personal questions. I’ve enclosed a link to an “informational” copy of the form for you to peruse. It is no wonder they don’t list the questions for an additional five people, along with the names of up to 12 people beyond the initial five.


Check it out. As you can read, these questions are invasive and personal.

When we received our ACS form, they started out by sending a floodof mail including two census packets in the first month. After than we were subject to a MONTH of daily phone calls. Even if you tell them you are not comfortable with the questions, as we did, they still call—our latest incoming call came in at 9:40 p.m. We started to keep a log. After four weeks or more of telephone calls, including messages which informed us that we now have an assigned case number. When I spoke with a representative at our county offices (after I’d been referred there by Washington D.C., the senate, and the Justice Department) she told me she could not tell me whether or not to fill out the survey, but not doing so could involve heavy penalties. Now that the phone calls have ceased, I understand (from their handbook and a letter we received two weeks ago) that we are now eligible for a personal visit from a census employee who will endeavor to collect the answers to these questions.

Their letters say we are MANDATED by law to fill out this survey. Their “helpful” paperwork and brochures state there are penalties if I do not give them this highly personal and intrusive information up to five people living in my home, even if those people are not related to me.

PLEASE check this out. The health care controversy is overshadowing this equally important issue.

At 3/28/2010 11:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I seen now reading your comments, that what we've been experiencing is routine for these people.

As it is, I do still feel intimidating and threatened. It isn't right. As a loyal American, who votes, pays taxes, etc., it is a travesty that MY tax dollars are being spent to HARRASS me.

Wierd isn't it? I think people in government have forgotten they serve WE THE PEOPLE.

As we are into the third phase, I'm sure we will eventually have a personal representative at the door to get us to fill out all that personal information.

I shall be so nice. But I will not provide them with one inch of information.

I've already sent in our census forms--that's all the info they need.

At 3/28/2010 11:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ooop! I just read all your answers here and realized you've already answered my question.

What a deal--they are threatening fines and jail time without teeth--and they're doing it on my dime.

Tch tch tch...

Thank you for your website.

At 3/28/2010 3:21 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

The CB is deceptive in the language that it uses. The best way to view it is to look for the loop holes. It is meant to scare you. The "mandatory" on the ACS is to increase the response rates. No one in their right mind would fill out a survey with that many personal questions. The Congressional sub-committee which directs the CB allowed the stronger language as long as no one would be fined.
The gov requires those enrolling for participation in gov programs to divulge private info. The CB then uses those same mandates as leverage to gain private info from those who have not applied to those programs. So the mandate exists for a different purpose and the CB is not telling the public that.
The ACS is being used as a screening tool to troll for additional individuals who qualify for gov handouts. The gov doesn't seem to get the fact that a person may decline to be in a gov program.
Various groups submit questions to the CB for consideration for future surveys. Since I received my ACS, the CB added the marriage history questions so a group studying families could have additional subjects; the health insurance question so they could ram gov approved health ins down our throats; the college major question so the NSF could find science and engineering degree holders for future surveys.
The more that the public learns about the ACS, the more outrage the public will have toward the CB.

At 3/29/2010 3:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Someone cited United States v. Rickenbacker above. The cite is 309 F.2d 462 (2d Cir. 1962). This challenge was based on the Fifth Amendment, although the challenger admitted he was not in fear of prosecution. A more recent case is Morales v. Daley, 116 F. Supp. 2d 2d 801 (S.D. Tex. 2000), which was affirmed by a panel of the Fifth Circuit in an unpublished opinion, 275 F.3d 45. That challenge involved various arguments, including the Fourth Amendment and First Amendment.

I find the justification supporting the census by these lower courts to be questionable, but they nevertheless uphold the census.

I just received the regular census and then later received the long form. I've decided to make a stand and not complete the long form. A count is provided for in the constitution for apportionment. There is no justification that the survey is needed or "necessary" for this enumeration. The constitution does not provide for additional purposes as I read it. I'm providing name, age and race. This was in the first census, even though I think this information is overbroad.

We'll see how it goes, but I'm going to tell them to get off my property or I'll call the police and press trespassing charges. There is no authorization to enter property without consent.

At 3/30/2010 12:30 PM, Anonymous A1S2 said...

I just received a notice that I too will be receiving the ACS. I'm just about to send in my regular census, with headcount only, and will not fill out this other unconstitutional request for information.

Thanks for your knowledge cathy, you seem to know a lot about this issue.

BTW, do any of you folks posting here who have received phone calls, do you have an unlisted number that they managed to find somehow, or are you listed in the phone book?

At 3/30/2010 2:09 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

The Survival Arts site which had the longest ACS thread had many post of personal accounts. Unfortunately it has disappeared. The CB contractors have gotten unlisted numbers on some individuals but not all. The internet has some info out there on the public. You could google for your name, address and phone number separately and see what you find. It might be illuminating.
My landline is not listed by my name. I did that a long time ago to weed out telemarketing calls.

At 4/02/2010 12:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I received the American Community Survey last year. I didn't fill it out. I got a couple of visits. My neighbor called me and said a census worker had been asking questions about me. Yes, they can do that! I got a visit from a supervisor. I told her to put me on the Refusal List. She wanted my name for the list. I said, "You don't need my name just put this address on your list." That was the end of it.Hope this helps you all.
Resident Apt 1

At 4/02/2010 2:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


At 4/02/2010 11:15 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Paranoid? Nope. Won't be intimidated by people too stupid to get real jobs. Peddle your insults elsewhere.

At 5/31/2010 7:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My wife handed me these ACS forms and said she was not conformtable filling them out. I started to research the ACS and came across this bolg. It has been very helpful understanding this intrusion of privacy. Also go to You-tube and check out Glenn Beck and others commenting on this.

At 6/20/2010 10:18 AM, Anonymous Nancy in Texas said...

So far, I have received three phone calls, several days apart, from the census bureau re: the ACS. I hung up on the 1st caller, but was polite with the last two...the last one was rude and abrupt. I will NOT participate in this survey. And to those who say, "What's the difference? The govt. already knows everything about you, anyway," I say that I refuse to participate in the violation of my Constitutional rights. It is a privilege to be able to take a visible stand and put my money where my mouth is. I will NEVER give in to this thing.

At 6/23/2010 10:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have received the ACS and harassing phone calls from US Census Bureau. I am sending it back blank with the letter I took from the below web site link. I think it states the case very nicely.


At 7/08/2010 6:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My husband and I have received two ACS and are now receiving phone calls. I sat down when I received the first survey and started to fill it out and was taken back by the intrusive questions not to mention the 48 questions per person.why do they need to know what time we leave for work? to include hours, minutes and am/pm? if either of us are deaf, do we have difficulty bathing? i have perused comments on this site and must say i too am feeling like this is an invasion. the survey wasn't even addressed to us it was to the resident of: plus my survey also has an omb#0607-0810 which expired 5-31-2008. I am not filling out this rediculous form, either of them.nor will i answer their phone calls and let me say, they better not come knocking on my door. i am not required by any law to fill out this bullsht form.

At 7/22/2010 3:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We received the ACS this past spring. They mailed it to us twice, then sent a postcard saying "We know you got it", etc. Then the phone calls started in June, but with caller ID..we simply ignored them. The calls suddenly stopped, and I wondered what next. While we were away from home two nights ago, a local census worked left a card and info on why we must answer these questions and a number to set up a phone interview. She was also very chatty on the note.

Tonight, I inadvertently took a call from her, since she had her number listed as "Private Caller", which my husband does as well...I thought it was him. She was very friendly with me, tried to get me into a conversation about the local area, but I was pretty silent. She finally asked me if I had time to go over the questions with her and I politely refused. I told her "You can put us down as No Response, because I am not going to answer those questions." Her response was "OK, well that's all I needed to know. Have a good evening." I responded in kind.

So...will wait and see what, if anything happens next! Will update if anything more comes of this.

At 8/01/2010 6:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just set fire to my survey.......Feels sooo good.

At 8/17/2010 11:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I looked into the consequences of not filling it out and in my research I found smart people saying just toss it in the garbage. I haven't yet but I show it to people and most laugh and are shocked at the questions they ask.
Saturday morning at noon a people came to the door I opened it to find a typical man hater looking woman with a clip board. I scofed and slammed the door so hard it opened up again. Then the woman when to her car that she parked in my driveway blocking all my cars in. She stood by her car filling stuff out on her little clipboard. I pressed the remote start button on my car what was 2 feet away from her positioned in a way a person might think it might run them over LOL. While the car was growling at her like a guard dog she occasionally looked up from her all to important paperwork and scowled at the car several times. I hit the unlock button and the cars locks made their usually overly loud thump sounds and she jumped into her 4x4 and took off. Tuesday morning my neighbor said a lady came to her door saying she had an unpleasant experience at my house. The lady just wanted to know how many people live in my house (I told original official census worker months ago it was just my dog and I). Then the lady wanted my neighbors phone number.
My point is now that I will not talk to these now census workers they want my neighbors to "taddle" on me.
Most interesting thing about the forms is not the invasive questions its the fact is all in English. No other language is anywhere in it. Kinda like the first census where it never asked if your An American citizen or are you in the country legally.
I herd once excuse the Census people had. "we just want to find out about automotive traffic to see where money should be sent. In my area 5 cars at a stop sign is a traffic jamb.

At 8/26/2010 9:38 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I did the minimum on the short census and got my ACS yesterday. What got me first was that they threaten you even before you open the damn thing. That got me going right off the bat. It took me about 30 seconds to realize that this was a pile of manure. I placed it back in its envelope and threw it aside. Later in the evening after dinner with my wife, I gave it to her to read without saying what it was. A few minutes later she came to me and said "This is bulls#*t". Bottom line.....I'm not sending it in, no way, no how. Let the games begin!

At 8/27/2010 10:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I received one of those American Community Survey's also yesterday in the mail. I didn't realize they would want to know some of the questions they asked. It makes me very uncomfortable. My own family doesn't even know some of the things this survey wants me to answer

At 8/30/2010 10:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with the above poster. There are things in this survey that my own family doesn't know. This survey is a bunch of bull! How dare they even distribute something like this!

At 9/01/2010 7:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you --All of you -- with the heads-up about the continual harrassments to be expected now. Visits via phone, front door, and mail.. If I had not known their tactics I would have felt vulnerable and intimidated. I had no intention of filling out this intrusive, prying, obnoxious questionaire but now I am ready for 'im. Gami~getlostACS

At 9/03/2010 8:46 AM, Blogger RM said...


Democrats, Republicans & Libertarians alike should all be concerned about the ACS survey asking intrusive questions that violates our right to keep our personal information private. I am a democrat and cannot believe how progressives are treating this survey as a non issue--it is unconscionable to say the least.

Support Bill H.R. 3131 to make the ACS survey VOLUNTARY - It has already been introduced in congress but hasn't passed yet.

Write a Letter to Congress to support bill H.R. 3131. This will make participation in the American Community Survey voluntary. For information about the bill and to find out who your congressional leaders are, visit:


If you are going to write an email or a letter to a member of Congress there are some things you need to know:

See sample letter to congress on bill H.R. 3131 at:


The RNC is in full support of having this bill passed into law.

The Republican National Committee passed the following resolution at their Summer 2010 meeting:



RESOLVED, that upon the approval of this resolution the Republican National Committee shall deliver a copy of this resolution to each of the Republican members of Congress, all Republican candidates for Congress, and to each Republican state and territorial party office.
As approved by the Republican National Committee, August 6, 2010

If the Democrat's DNC would get on board now as the RNC had recently done then bill, H.R. 3131 may have a good chance of getting passed into law.

At 9/03/2010 2:00 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

HR 3131 contains some questions exceptions, which means that returning the survey may still be required. According to the CB material, name and contact info are not required. The are administrative questions. The ACS won't tell you that. This bill may require those questions to be answered. The goal is not to remove the "mandatory" from the ACS but to get rid of the ACS and the other invasive CB surveys. The gov should not be conducting data collecting and monitoring of its citizens.

At 9/04/2010 8:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I received the first copy of the ACS about month ago. The second copy two weeks ago. All addressed to the (resident of) not my name. Like all my junk mail. both copies went into the trash. Now I am getting calls on my home phone. I answered it once. I have FIOS and you have to have a phone number to have FIOS, but I never use this phone so I just unhooked it. Now I am waiting for a knock at my door. That's when the person knocking is going to have problem.
Checkout this web site. This person has broke down the the titles and codes they are trying to use to say this is a required law to fill this piece of shit out. http://www.aipnews.com/talk/forums/thread-view.asp?tid=13210&posts=1

At 9/04/2010 5:41 PM, Blogger RM said...

If you feel your civil liberties are being violated or you are being harassed, fined or even being threatened imprisonment by this senseless bureau for your failing to comply with the mandated ACS survey then this video may be just what you are looking for.



At 9/05/2010 9:21 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

The aipnews article is spot on. The language used is extremely important. It is used deliberately to mislead and confuse. The Constitution requires a count of the population and left it to congress to decide how the count was to be conducted. Any method would have been fine. Cities and towns could have be mandated to do the counts and submit them, but congress chose something else. The the CB employees, in an effort to extend job security evolved into what it is today. The CB created the social and behavioral science majors. Since then the CB and academics have been joined at the hip, creating a revolving door of rotating employment positions between the 2 areas. The expansion of the survey questions originates with these same academics, who are using the data to justify their own jobs security as they pry into our private lives. Add in the politicians, who find that knowing the composition of their constituents helps them to pander and bend their messages to get elected. So instead of asking you what you want them to do, the politicians figure out what they need to say to get votes. The whole thing is about job security. To keep this whole scam going, it is really necessary to keep the public from being fined. The action of a fine gives the individual standing in court to bring a suit against the CB, which would result in exposing all this as unconstitutional. Oh what a tangled web we weave when we practice to deceive! The 2000 census long form created a backlash and the ACS is creating its own backlash. The best thing which has happened is that the public is becoming educated about the Constitution, the law and the bill of rights. The gov has been steam-rolling over the public protections outline in the Constitution for decades. It is time for the public to shove the Constitution in to the politicians' faces and take the power back.

At 9/06/2010 8:46 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

File under: you are not alone.

In an article by D'Vera Cohn of the Pew Center, the response rate for the ACS with "mandatory" is between 59.2%- 57.3%. The CB with its number magic transforms that response rate to 98%. Without the "mandatory" the response rate is 38.8%-34.8%. Notice that the "mandatory" increased the response rate only 20%. Great job CB! All that extra effort for 20%.

So, based upon using a response rate of 59.2, that means that 40.8% are non-responders. If we mulitply the 40.8% times the 250,000 (number of households/month getting the ACS), we get 102,000 non-responders/month and 1,224,000 non-responders/ year. Only one third of the non-responders get a residence visit.

I just love a backlash.

At 9/30/2010 4:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks so much to everyone who has posted helpful information here! We received this "junk mail" today, and I had been feeling alone in the battle.

This ACS with it's phony mandatory intimidation language will be happily going into the shredder, along with whatever else they send.

This is a perfect example of why we can't let the government be in charge of OUR health care: we just cannot trust them.

What will we do when they decide some "shot" is good for us and decide to make it "mandatory" and send people door to door to force it on us?

I have been a Democrat and I have been a Republican, and sometimes it is hard to know which is worse.

The Democrats want to take dominion over all areas of our lives, and the Republicans want to replace us with foreign workers.

I'm thrilled to find out that the RNC is in favor of getting rid of this invasive form and am sad that the Democrats just don't get it.

This form is just more free advertising for the tea party. Who, except the American Government, wastes time, money, and trees, to send us a letter, just to tell us that they will be sending us a letter-(ACS)?

This ACS is just an example of what the Government would be doing if they thought they could get away with it.

Just look at what happened with health care: Obama's campaign promise was that he would LOWER the cost of health care and NOT make it mandatory.

What did we get? Rates are HIGHER and mandatory, with the "HOPE" that MAYBE the rates "won't go up quite as fast". And, on top of that, we can't call Obama a liar because he is black, we can only call a white liar a liar.

And just today, on MSNBC, a Democratic congressional representative said that they did not BRIBE democrats to vote for health care (like we are fools who can't remember how they got their 60 votes in the Senate).

Again, thanks to all who have helped me find the courage to shred this invasion-of-privacy form instead of cowering to the government bullies intimidation and threats.

At 10/02/2010 5:31 PM, Blogger RM said...

I found the below websites to be very informative in educating me of my constitutional rights when dealing with the
American Community Survey and those "pesky" census takers.

See video "The Census is Getting Personal" at:

(The video has had 1,924,542 views since Feb. 11, 2010 - You can add comments also on this site.)

See "Census Video Part 2, Clarifications" found at:


At 10/14/2010 11:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Got my home visit a few days back. Guy was really nice. He wanted some information that I wasn't willing to give. He took what I gave him and left. Wasn't as bad as I thought it was gonna be.

At 10/23/2010 8:08 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I got it, I'm not filling it out, come and get me. Peace...

At 10/27/2010 2:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is what happens when people don't understand the importance of data and get hyper-paranoid. I'll bet half the respondents here have no hesitation in filling out their totally unnecessary registration cards for hundreds of consumer purchases which give corporations TONS of data that are then sold to countless market research firms and other corporations, including those that sell insurance and health care. But when it comes to the one government agency that takes extraordinary pains not to share information with anyone, that makes it extremely difficult if not impossible to identify any single individual in a public dataset, that goes through great lengths to ensure data quality far and beyond any other "private" firm - well, let's heap on the abuse! Why? Because we're paranoid that's why! The government is taking over, it's a monster that will creep into our beds at night and eat us! Of course, ask the respondents of this blog exactly what they are afraid of, and they can't really tell you. Maybe someone they know tried to dodge their taxes so that the rest of us could pick up the tab for ensuring we have adequate defense and infrastructure. Well then the IRS invaded them in the night. And so on and so forth. You folks do not understand science, which is why we rank somewhere at the bottom of "developed" nations in science education. Data quality is fundamental to good science, and the government certainly does a much much better job at protecting individual privacy and ensuring data quality than any other organization. But I'm wasting my breath and time, aren't I?

At 10/27/2010 10:11 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Yes you're wasting your breath and time. We're not paranoid. There is nothing wrong with resisting an invasion of privacy. I don't care how important the data is to anyone out there. Get the data with voluntary surveys and don't hide behind a gov agency and a phony mandatory for an invasive survey. The fact that there's already tons of data out there won't make me add any more to it. I do understand science. Our current education system stinks and social science is a pseudo science. The data the CB collects is not significant enough to be of any real value anyway.As for the gov keeping data safe....DREAM ON. It is not more safe with the gov. Tell that to all the individuals who had their private info listed on-line by a gov error. The CB's own info states that a profile can be reconstructed using 6 data points and that on-line filing of the ACS won't be done because the CB can't keep the data safe. The gov has no business collecting this data. You can whine and complain all you want. So why don't you get over yourself. Your flimsy argument shows me how ill informed you are at debating and how poorly researched your position is. Real scientists would mop the floor with you.

At 10/28/2010 9:31 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

File under a little background info:

The majors of social and behavioral "science" were created by the CB as a way of turning an intermittent temporary job into a full time permanent job. The CB later evolved into a money pit bureaucracy where employees rotate between gov jobs and academic jobs. The social and behavioral "science" degree holders that I know didn't chose their majors. Rather those majors were selected to avoid flunking out of another major. Just look at the bios of CB and academics in these areas.

Now, these same individuals are looking at us as "defective"; unable to take care of ourselves and to make good decisions. They have ignored the constitutional protections with the excuse of "promoting the general welfare". The gov was to provide a CLIMATE to promote the general welfare, NOT dictate to the public what is deemed necessary by a bunch of self-appointed elites thinking they know what is "in out best interest". Well, I'm not interviewing for parental replacements. The premise that they know what best is based upon What????? Who died and put them in charge? We have a gov that can't live on a budget, over borrows and prints money and then wants to tell me what I need? I need them to get out of my life! There is NOTHING the gov does well or can't make worse!

So, assuming that this data collection is soooooo necessary for the gov to function, then sell on the MERITS of the ARGUMENT, instead of running a stealth EXTORTION RING!!!

Anyone believing that a promise from the data junkies to keep your data safe fails to remember the lost CB lap tops or the postings of entire ACS profiles on the internet. And don't forget all the retired and current military personnel who were contacted because their personal info was posted on the internet, exposing them to identity theft.

So all you data junkies, GET REAL JOBS! Make something of value instead of waiting in line begging for handouts to publish your lame research. What I read from you guys is laughable.

Calling people who reject the CB intrusion names indicates that you have already lost the argument.

At 11/06/2010 6:18 PM, Blogger RM said...

Re: Anonymous said...
This is what happens when people don't understand the importance of data and get hyper-paranoid.

Hey, FREEDOM isn't for everyone! Obviously it isn't for you.

Thank you Cathy for putting this ill advised person in his/her place. Keep up the good work gal!

At 11/09/2010 9:54 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

File under that revolving door continues.......

The new president of the CB lobby group COSSA is the former CB director Kenneth Prewitt. He presided over the 2000 census and the creation of the ACS. He went from gov service to Columbia Univ and now to a lobby group. Conflict of interest doesn't begin to describe this.

At 11/16/2010 6:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I too have received the two packets in the mail and the same phone calls! I told them to go to hell!

I urge everyone to write their Cngressman and State Representatives! I even contacted the Governors office!

Please , DON'T take this SOCIALISM lying down!!!!

At 12/01/2010 6:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just got called by the Census Bureau. They tried to have us answer the survey over the phone.

What I really want to know is this, who out there has not answered this, and what has happened to you? I am prepared for a fight, but I just want to know what to expect.

At 12/01/2010 6:41 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

I didn't answer it and I know 2 others personally who didn't.
I got the 90 day mails,calls, visits and then nothing. It has been more than 3 years and still nothing. No fines.... nothing. They go away after the rep visits.
Calls and rep visits last 30 days each. Calls/visits increase in frequency as the end of the month approaches. There may be more than one rep who comes since there is a refusal specialist. Only 1/3 of residences get rep visits. The CB doesn't have the money to visit everyone. Reps try to come at different times like am, noon, evening and then weekend days so that they increase the chances of seeing someone.
I also refused to answer the additional questions on the 2010 census and got visits for that too. They went away and I have heard nothing from that.

I didn't answer the phone and didn't talk to the reps. While they may be required to contact you, you have no obligation to talk to them.

At 12/02/2010 4:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We received the first mailing on 9-29-2010 and ignored the "intrusion" and then we received a second ACS packet about 6 weeks ago. We also ignored this "intrusion". About an hour ago, a census worker showed-up at the front door, flashing a badge I couldn't really read and holding her laptop. I told her that we completed the 2010 census with the number of people in our household as required by the constitution. She told me that this was the "American Community Survey" and it is different from the census. She insisted that she needed to ask questions, or get my phone number, but I refused. I then contacted my Congressman Ralph Hall, and they are supposed to get back in contact with me tomorrow. The census woman was quite rude and demanding. We'll see if I hear from my Congressman Hall's office. I did find an article from the NEW YORK POST (August 19, 2010) that states Representative Ted Poe, also from Texas, has endorsed a bill that has 34 co-sponsors that require the bureau to stick to the basics: name, contact information, date and the number of people living at an address. Do they really need to know if I have a physical, mental or emotional condition or have difficulty concentrating, remembering or making decisions? (page 9, question 18). I guess I just won't be able to concentrate long enough to remember to make the decision to complete the survey and allow the bureau to invade my privacy!
I will invoke my Fourth Amendment protection!

At 12/08/2010 4:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Help!!! i received my 2nd ACS last month and this past Sunday i had got a call and for the past 4 days they have been calling me asking me to answer and what not. I told them that it only says "enumerate" in the constitution and they said no you have to answer the first call i just told the lady it says enumerate and that's it good bye 2nd time they called i wasn't home and third time i wasn't home either the fourth time they called i picked up i told the lady no i am not answering any other additional questions except how many people live she kept saying no title 13 article this and that say you must she kept repeating the same thing over and i told her i am not answering anything further than the people that live in the house and title 13 is statue not a law it says in the constitution as "as law direct" not statue direct. This is purely wrong why ask so invasive questions.


At 12/09/2010 5:12 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

You don't have to do anything. The Constitution is on you side. You don't have to talk to them. Don't answer the phone. They can ask you landlord questions or neighbors. Sit tight, it only lasts the 90 days.

At 12/09/2010 6:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's getting me scared with the phone calls and soon the visits

At 12/09/2010 1:10 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Time to switch from being scared to being defiant. I made a game of it; seeing how I could evade them. There is no law which requires you to read your mail, answer your phone or open your door. They need a warrant just like everyone else. You may not have any visits. Only 1/3 of the non-responders get visits. Those living in a rural area are more likely to get visits than those in urban areas. Don't let these idiots take power from you. The law is on your side. The language used on the ACS is designed to scare people. Remember, they are low level gov employees who are paid by the public, so they work for us. Tell them to get a warrant or get lost.

At 12/09/2010 6:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another phone call and message tonight. Recycled both forms received in the mail. Should I expect a visit? I was hoping the frigid weather would keep them away... Is it better to respond and decline or ignore?

signed RI Resident

At 12/10/2010 5:22 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

I chose to ignore. Others have refused. Talking to them sometimes causes them to try harder to get the info. Giving some answers causes the CB to try to get more answers by calling to verify the answers already given. The survey states that the residence was chosen not you. I felt the field rep could get all the info from the appearance of my residence and would get nothing from me. This survey is a screening devise for additional surveys. There is no end to what the data junkies want to study. The survey is a huge invasion of privacy conducted by a gov extortion ring. 250,000 residences get this survey every month, so many refuse that the CB can't visit all non-responders. The CB does like to study the non-responders to find methods of getting compliance, which is why I didn't speak to them at all. A cop can't come to you home and demand info without a warrant, a CB rep has no ability to get a warrant and the CB has no authority to impose fines. All the CB can do is scare and threaten until the next month arrives and the reps move on to the next group of non-responders.

At 12/10/2010 1:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We've recieved two survey packets. A letter and a post card telling us the packets were coming. We didn't answer the survey. In the last 7 days we've received 3 phone calls and another letter. I expect someone will be knocking on my door soon. I have the section in the Constitution high lighted along with the 4th, 9th and 10th Amendments, which I will show the person. Then I'm going to invite them to leave my property. Having already been the victim of ID theft once, I am not letting out any information, to anyone, anytime soon.

At 12/12/2010 8:41 PM, Blogger sample said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 12/13/2010 5:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

cathy thanks for your advice. as a rule i do not answer marketing surveys or phone surveys or what have you. i find it appalling that the gov't would seek this information with a name attached. why not make it anonymous? i mean, i don't even have a facebook page and i'm going to dump all of my personal info as well as that of my entire household into the mail for some gov't hack to peruse? why??? on a side note, i happen to work in support of the federal gov't and we're constantly having to complete training on securing personal data and safeguarding information. i hold a security clearance which means the gov't has a bevy of information on me already as a condition of my employment. again, why am i supplying this to the CB? i just don't get it. as someone who doesn't receive any federal benefits, i fail to see the purpose of this data grab.
end rant ;)
RI resident again

At 12/15/2010 3:44 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

The purpose of the data grab began as a simple way for the CB to transform to full time status from a once every decade department. It was all about job expansion to provide job security. The CB created the social science college majors. There is a revolving door of people going to and from the CB to academia. Then, it was all to easy to then peddle the data grab to the politicians who would benefit from the info to better pander to the voters. It is also used to gerrymander districts. Add on a bunch of data junkies from minority rights groups, marketing companies and behavioral research groups and you get a huge lobby petitioning the CB to add questions on their behalf. After the outrage from the 2000 census long form, the CB created the ACS. Bloated gov creates more bloated gov programs which need more info to feed the spending need. Just because it is a good idea doesn't mean the that gov should create a program for it.

At 12/17/2010 1:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just had my fourth visit to my home from the Census Department. It was actually a very nice woman who said I did not have to answer anything I did not want to. She used fake names, John and Jane Doe.

I just had to tell her how many people lived in the home and our ages (no birthdates)

Everything else I could decline to answer or give a very vague response (my husband works downtown for instance) I did not answer anything that had to do with money or our home.

She also said if we ever got a survey in the future we could put an "R" in response to any question we did not wish to answer.

Hope this helps someone.

At 12/17/2010 7:21 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Sorry, you did not have to tell her anything, not even the number of people, because the ACS is not used for enumeration. You did not have to talk to her at all.

I wouldn't waste any of my time writing "R" on the survey. I don't work for the CB and I won't be intimidated by them. I still have a pile of the survey stuff sitting unopened. The CB reps are all bark and no bite.

At 12/18/2010 12:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Update since the last post. The call frequency has increased dramatically. We went from one call a night to 4 yesterday and 3 so far today (Saturday, and all before 3 pm). Maybe the CB hires ex-telemarketers who already know how to harass people. Thank God for caller ID; we just don't even pick up. They don't always leave a message either. With Christmas and the end of the month upon us it seems like they're trying to make one final push. Shame it won't pay off ;)
Happy holidays folks!
RI res.

At 12/18/2010 1:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Cathy I will switch and not be scared. So far the phone calls have stopped. Does that mean I will be expecting visitors next month, how can I prepare for them. What should I say when I open my door. I heard if you ignore them they will just keep coming. Do I say I refuse to answer any questions pretaining to my personal life?

At 12/18/2010 5:33 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

You have a 1 in 3 chance of being visited. They do not visit all non-responders.If you live in a rural area, you are more likely to be visited and less likely if in an urban area. They like to study the non-responders, so no contact gives them no info.

I didn't answer the door. My residence looks the same whether I'm home or not, so it was difficult the the reps to know when I was home. The standard procedure is to visit at various times to catch occupants. Morning, noonish, late afternoon, evening and weekends. I had 2 reps; the regular rep and the refusal specialist. The visits increase as the end of the month gets closer. I even had 2 visits in one day. I had a camera set up to record the visits. Once the last 30 days were up, I heard nothing. It just stops.

If you are caught outside, you can refuse to answer anything. You don't have to identify yourself as the occupant. You can call the police and get the reps removed. Others have done that. There are lots of options. Go with what your gut tells you.

The reps are all different. Some are nice and try to get answers by asking questions that you will answer in order to have you answer others by virtue of answering some. This is one of their techniques. Other reps will take the threat or the guilt trip stance.

The last thing the CB wants is another public backlash.

The ACS is a screening tool for other surveys. The CB is looking for the elderly, chronically ill, disabled and very large families. Answering the ACS may open the door to more intrusions from the CB or other social science groups.

I pay for my residence and phone. It is for my use. I have the right not to be disturbed by outside intrusions. The CB will pray on the desire people have to be perceived as being nice. I see nothing nice about a program which invades personal privacy with threats.

At 12/19/2010 5:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Right on, Cathy! I've had a policy of not answering the door for solicitors for years. Neighborhood kids looking to make a few bucks shoveling snow or selling cookies is obviously an exception. All other peddlers may ring and knock away but won't receive an answer. I've even been spotted by them sitting right in the front window or vacuuming but they still don't get an answer. I hate to sound unfriendly but I believe I have a right to choose not to be bothered by salespeople, scam artists, or folks pushing their religious or political beliefs. It's the same with telemarketers - I see that "800 service" on my caller ID and just let it go to voicemail. This goes to the root of why the ACS is so upsetting to me. I feel like it stomps on my right to privacy only to snag personal information, much of which the gov't already possesses via IRS, voting records, birth certificates, etc. At some point you just have to say enough is enough.
Should the CB start visiting my house, my plan is to simply not answer the door. If they catch me outside (not likely when it's 17 degrees out), I plan on talking over them and saying "no thanks, not interested, in a hurry, bye now!" before they even have a chance to explain in full.
As I keep reading, this too shall pass!
RI res.

At 1/04/2011 1:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

All of this information is available on my government tax returns. I will not comply with the redundancy. I pay my tax consultant good money to make sure my forms are done professionally. Why should I do "Compilation without Compensation"?

At 1/05/2011 4:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cathy, this is the scared guy. I had my first visit today, i accidentally opened the door. The guy showed me his I.D. and said it's the law that i answer the questions and wanted to take the names of the people in the household. I told him i am not answering no question cause i find it invasive of my private information and i will contact my senate office. He kept going on about it's the law. He wanted to give me his card, i didn't take it. I walked back in my house, looked through the door hole and he was standing there for two minutes i don't know what he was doing. What should i do next time they come, I need help!

At 1/06/2011 11:21 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

You owe them nothing. They have no authority to collect the info. The rep needs a warrant to compel you to answer and he has no probable cause to get one. He has no authority to compel you to answer the phone or the door. You could tape a copy of the Bill of Rights to the door with the 4th and 10th amendments circled. Don't be surprised if you get a second rep coming. They like the good cop/bad cop strategy.

See, the CB claims that it has the authority to collect what it wants because the Constitution gave it the power. In reality, the CB has the authority to collect what it needs for redistricting, which is a count and only a count. The logic behind the ACS was that since the CB had always asked questions, then it can continue to do so. And since the ACS is the old long form that it is just like the decennial census, which it is not. The Constitution states that no sampling is allowed for the census. The ACS is described by the CB as sampling, so it is in violation of the Constitution on that basis first.

The CB field rep is told that there are all sorts of laws which compel the public to answer and they get away with it because the general public doesn't sit around and read laws. The CB reps don't read them either and can't reference a specific law. Title 13 and title 18 do not apply specifically to the ACS, although the CB wants the public to believe that it does.

So now what? Feel free to do whatever you want. Your 90 days is almost up and you are headed toward the wire. I will tell you that I still have not been fined nor have I been fined for not answering the addition questions on the 2010 census. I had 4 reps try to catch me at my residence, which lasted from May til late Aug.
Civil disobedience does not come easily to those of us who play by the rules. The CB is not playing by the rules set forth by the ultimate law of the land which is the Constitution. So why should we help them to violate that document? The Constitution either means something or it doesn't. The gov can't cherry pick its way, using the Constitution to justify some things and then ignoring the parts which restrain the gov from intruding on our privacy.

You will get through this and when it is done, you'll feel more empowered.

At 1/06/2011 11:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

THANKS A LOT! what should i say to the next field rep that comes knocking on my door? do i say "i refuse to answer any questions and see an violation in my rights?"

How many more visits can i expect?

What's weird is i live in an apartment building and i didn't hear anyone ring my bell from downstairs unless he got in by someone going out.

I hope that first visit was the last, this is stressing me out!

At 1/06/2011 11:49 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

Ok, since you live in an apartment building, you have an additional issue. The CB rep can compel you landlord to be let in or to give out personal info on you. There is a law for that. I would inform your landlord that you will not be answering the questions because the CB has no authority to ask them. Hopefully you landlord will evade any questions the reps asks.

I know it is stressful. It was designed to be that way. Just think how bad it is for people with severe illnesses who could get sicker from the stress.
The visits depend mostly on the case load the rep has and distance traveled to see you. They can visit more than once in one day.Visits tend to ramp up towards the end of the month to wear the person down and to increase the probability of compliance.

At 1/06/2011 12:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This totally sucks , this needs to be STOPPED. can't my landlord refuse? And what information my landlord has besides my name an number and how many people living.

At 1/06/2011 12:55 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Yes it sucks!
I forgot to add that you did a great job with the rep who did come. You can always repeat what you did. I decided to hide out because I found that more fun. I had planed to tell any rep to take a long walk off a short pier it I got caught outside.

The landlord could answer the race, gender and approx age as well. He can refuse. I'd ask the rep to produce a copy of the law first before saying anything. I doubt the reps have copies.

These reps have to be careful not to cross the line into the harassment realm. They have some authority but not enough to get away with violating trespassing laws either. Their power comes from getting the public to believe that the CB has the same power that the IRS has and it doesn't.

By requiring that one person fill out the ACS for all others in the residence, the CB is asking that person to violate the privacy of the others living there.

If you move, the next occupants will get stuck with the survey and not you. It is tied to the residence. The CB doesn't threaten the residences with fines that do not receive visits.

As far as the stopping, the driving force behind this are the data junkies and social scientists. Having the GOP in the house controlling the purse strings will cut money going to these research groups and thereby decrease their clout. They are already whining about it.

At 1/06/2011 1:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks and i will say the same thing again over and over till they stop bothering me.

So once my 90 days are up, will they ever send me the ACS again in the future?

YES, the GOP need to put a stop to this since they are in the house. I thought the democratic were the good guys.

Cathy, how do they find out which family has larger member, low income, and elderly people? isn't this a random survey or is that what they want you to believe.

At 1/06/2011 3:44 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

First the survey is not random. To be truly random, every residence would have an equal chance of being selected. In order to run the stealth program, areas with low populations will take 5 years to equal the samples in high population areas. Can't have people with the surveys finding each other, after all that's why the decennial longform morphed into the ACS. The data users have logged various complaints about the sample size being too low and the methods used to obscure the identities making the data less reliable. The CB also lies about the actual response rate. The CB says that it is 95%, when in reality it is between 55-70%. The response for the decennial census never gets near 95%. So why does the CB report the high response rate? Because it considers a survey with 5 data points to be a completed form. The CB rep could get 5 data points by just looking at a residence. Most of us could do it too.

How many people filled out all the questions on the last census? How many people know that they are required to answer only the enumeration question? I figure not many. Most just filled in names, DOB, genders, relationships, etc. It is none of the gov's business whether I live alone or with others, related or not.

As for finding the low income, elderly, disabled or large families, people receiving the survey or the decennial census give out that info which then identifies those the CB wishes to receive additional surveys. The CB has a collection of other surveys, which are just as invasive as the ACS. Plus the CB will pass the info on to research groups. The CB only protects the full release of the answers, but will release partial info. So when the CB promise to keep thing confidential, that's not completely true.

Investigating marketing groups is a fun thing to do. They grab up the CB info and sell it. I found various sites which gave income levels down to the zipcode or block level. They provide info on high earners who have long commutes, with the thought of marketing audio books. The use of the data goes on and on. There is so much info out there that it only take 6 data points and the entire profile can be reconstructed and the CB worries about that.

Why no one would be fined; my favorite math problem.

The ACS is sent out to 250,000 residences each month. Assuming that the response is 70% (which it is not), that leaves 30% as non-responders. 30% X 250,000 = 75,000 residences/month. Multiply that times 12 months and one gets 900,000 residences/ year. That's the low end. The gov has no mechanism to process that number of non-responders. The CB only sends reps to 1/3 of the non-responders because the don't have the money to visit them all.

At 1/06/2011 4:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Happy New Year!
Update since last time - got our first visit today. A woman came this afternoon, rang the bell 3 times (we didn't answer), then went to the back door and left her brochure/letter/business card. She then went back to her car and waited 5 more minutes. Very odd. We plan on just not answering.
I was wondering what would happen if, in the event that she corners us, we tell her that we did send it back and act all indignant that the CB lost it. Not sure if that would work or not.
Keeping up the good fight!
RI Resident

At 1/06/2011 5:33 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

If you say it was lost that won't matter to her. She is in charge of collecting the info anyway. Even those who have returned the survey can get called to verify the answers. Even compliance has its risks.

At 1/06/2011 5:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I see now. So they said me the ACS survey from the information i had provided in the regular census? If that is true i shouldn't had filled it in the first place. I was naive and didn't do my research.

So Cathy after my 90 days are up. Am i ever going to get another ACS form in the future again so is it just one time thing???

At 1/06/2011 6:17 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

More than likely you got the ACS because your area needed sampling.

According to the CB info, each residence should get the ACS only once every 5 years. At least that is the goal. Resistance is growing. Most people never knew there was a longform unless they received one. The saving grace will be budget cuts for CB programs. It is constantly over budget and under delivers.

At 1/07/2011 11:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well hopefully i don't get it again after 90 days ever again.

Cathy, i received a letter in the mail box from U.S Commerce Department. I didn't open it yet and kind of scared to open it. What could it say on the letter? is it the fine or something?

At 1/07/2011 12:13 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

No fine. It is probably a letter from the nearest field office introducing you to your field rep. The CB wants to up the comfort level of the public by stating that the field rep works for the CB so that you will happily answer the questions. Mine was addressed to Dear Current Resident. It did have the title 13 thing in BOLD letters. The letter was signed - Your cooperation is greatly appreciated.
I used the info in a google search to get my rep's address. I then got the make, model and plate numbers off the cars at the rep's residence. How much fun it was to watch the car arrive and know who it was.

The CB will not put the treat of a fine in writing. The threat in implied to scare people. The justice dept would have to deal with fines and there are many lawyers just waiting for that to happen.

Since you were not required to sign for the letter, the CB has no proof that you actually received it. This letter is out of the CB playbook.

At 1/07/2011 12:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you that really calm the stress i am dealing with. So am i expecting a visit today or later this weekend?

This getting to be really outrageous!!!!!!!!!!

At 1/07/2011 12:53 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Visits are staggered to find the occupant home. My first visit came the 2nd week of the month. The rep left contact info taped to my door, which I left outside. That same week, I got my intro letter. Then the rep patiently waited for me to make the contact before contacting me again a week later. I think I had a total of 10 visits during the 3 weeks with 2 in one day on the last day of the month from the refusal specialist. The number of visits will vary from rep to rep. The playbook says 7 visits total, but that didn't include the 3 visits from the refusal specialist. Some reps have made more than the 7 visits, so each one is unique.

At 1/07/2011 4:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

7 reps? they try that hard to get our cooperation.

What should i say to the refusal specialist when he/she comes? and what does the refusal specialist try to say to convince me?

At 1/07/2011 4:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

we also googled the field rep's name and found out she lives about 20 minutes away in another state. wrote down the make and model of the car too so we know who to avoid. :)
to be honest, we have had a standing policy for years of not answering the door for solicitors. the only exceptions being neighborhood kids selling candy bars or collecting for a food drive. we don't even attempt to make it look like nobody's home - just don't answer.
we threw the papers the woman from the CB left right in the trash. it was a photocopied form letter, a brochure, and a business card. i have no qualms about ignoring her. and you're right, nowhere on the envelope or letter she left did it say my name; just "dear resident."
if, god forbid, we get cornered by one of these people or "caught" in the yard, my plan was to simply talk over them and not let them have a chance to explain who they are or what they wanted. for example, "oh did you say survey? no thanks, no time, have a nice day!" and then by then get into the house and slam the door.
RI Resident

At 1/07/2011 5:08 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

It is not 7 reps but 7 visits for the primary rep. They are taught to be persistent and the CB laughs that we are dumb enough to fall for it. They are taught to keep a conversation going because any interaction, even a hostile one, begins a relationship. These are people who are taught to go around or take advantage of the "golden rule".

No one is required to say anything to these clowns. They are wasting your time and invading your privacy. They are praying on an individual wanting to be perceived as being nice. They are taking advantage of those they seek. Tell them to go away;drop dead; do obscene thing to themselves; leave before being arrested for trespassing. They are running an extortion ring and victimizing the public. The law is on our side, not theirs. They want to study the non-responders so that they can create methods to get compliance.

At 1/07/2011 5:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the same guy comes back again i will tell him the same thing and tell him i refuse.

Can i call the number of the rep from the letter i got and tell he/she that i refuse? or that wont help?

At 1/07/2011 5:18 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

The field reps use various tactics.

1. You're so special! The gov has chosen YOU to help get stuff for your community.

2. The guilt trip. Surely you don't want to be the one who is soooo selfish as to deprive your community of funds need for schools, roads, etc.

3. It's your DUTY. Just think of it like voting and jury duty. You community really needs this info.

4. IT'S THE LAW!!!!! We have title 13, title 18......FINES!!!!!

Yeah, whatever. My community doesn't need the federal gov, which can't get anything right, to play the middle man for my community. My elected officials can ask me directly for what is needed and the feds can go away. Besides, currently our gov is broke, so there is no money for any of these lofty projects which are a violation of the 10 amendment anyway.

At 1/08/2011 9:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is too much!

I got another card from the mail Cathy. It said "Starting the first of this month a federal employee will be visiting your house or apartment to complete a nation-wide survey that is designed to provide communities a fresh look at how they are."

It had the rep name and number.

So what's next for me? what they mean federal employee. This is getting to be to much!!

At 1/08/2011 12:26 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Remember.... YOU ARE ALMOST DONE. Every day that passes gets you closer to the end.

Everyone who works for the federal gov is a federal employee. I was a federal employee once upon a time. The card you got was sent to convince the public that the ACS is from the gov. The field reps are low level gov workers who are selected mostly because they are gullible enough to believe the garbage they are fed in their training courses. The reps tend to be elderly individuals, with a few other ages thrown in. Do not be afraid of them, they don't know the law and they stick to the CB talking points. Think of them as ill-informed con-artist. The CB under the direction of the Commerce Dept HAS NO LEGAL AUTHORITY TO COMPEL THE PUBLIC TO RESPOND TO THE ACS!

In spite of all that is written on the CB material or what the reps will say, YOU ARE NOT REQUIRED TO TALK TO THEM OR ANSWER THE QUESTIONS. THEY NEED A WARRANT!

On the bottom pack page of the ACS it states: Respondents are not required to respond to any information collection unless it displays a valid approval number from the Office of Management and Budget. This 8-digit number appears in the bottom right on the front cover of this form. I didn't bother to check my number, but others have and found that their numbers had expire.

At 1/08/2011 1:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, my rep was an elderly person.

Does the same rep come visit me over and over for 7 times?

At 1/08/2011 1:19 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

The people who designed the ACS are EVIL, plain and simple. Social, behavioral and economic scientists needed private info to conduct their research and CB employees like job security. In order to compel the public to divulge private info, a program was devised and tested to create language that would scare people into cooperating. And so the deception began. Census questions started expanding to include all sorts of unnecessary info. During the 2000 decennial census, the public outrage over the longform had the CB director fearing that the public would boycott the census, so the questions were separated and the new product became the ACS. That director is now the president of COSSA, the largest lobby group for the expansion of gov surveys. Every year the Commerce Dept petitions the data users to submit new questions for consideration. Then the CB decides which questions will be part of the new version of the survey. The gov has no authority to request, collect or store any of this info, which is the real reason why no one has gotten fined.

At 1/08/2011 1:28 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Yes, you get the same rep over and over. I don't know how residences may get the refusal specialist. That individual came 3 times at the very end of my 90 days. He didn't leave any notes or contact info. I think he came to validate the fact that I was not responding.

At 1/10/2011 5:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Getting ready for our 2nd visit... We received another letter today, this one proving the name and contact information of the rep who came last week. What I found troubling, though, was the blatant fear-mongering embedded within the letter.

Testimony by the Director of the Population Division for the City of New York:

"Census data gave us a view of New York's neighborhoods in 2000. We know a great deal about persons who resided in lower Manhattan in April of 2000 and about the huge flow of workers into and out of that area as of that date. The tragedy of September 11, 2001 brought devastation to many families in New York City. In addition, because of the dramatic effects of that day, a collateral result was that the usefulness of census data for lower Manhattan was seriously compromised. Without an alternative to the traditional census long form, we will have to wait until 2012 for a post 9/11 view of that city because there is no way at present to gauge change over shorter periods of time...planning requires data on the current population of the area; it is no longer possible to use the 2000 data as if it were "current," given the event of September 11, 2001..."

Seriously? How shameful to invoke 9/11 to sell this survey. It's like saying fill out your ACS or the terrorists win! Whatever did we do in past years when people were displaced due to industry collapses or natural disasters between census years? Thank heavens the gov't was making sure we had surveys for New Yorkers after 9/11, but it took 10 years to ensure health care for 9/11 rescue workers.
If the gov't is looking to make cuts to bloated gov't, I'd like to suggest drastic cuts to the Census Bureau.
RI Resident

At 1/15/2011 1:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Update - another visit today. We were out. She left a note saying she'd come back Monday and that "this survey is required by law!!" Please. In the envelope was another brochure, this time about protecting our private data (wouldn't have to worry about protecting it if they didn't seek it in the first place). Also in the envelope was a scanned page from Title 13 showing where they can fine us. Nobody has ever really been fined right? I'll be so relieved when this is over. It's such a drag coming home and having to worry about a new letter or a visit. And we pay for this!
RI Resident

At 1/17/2011 12:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Scared guy here Cathy. Got my second visit same guy. i wasn't home my family members were, they told him i wasn't here. He said he needs a response. Left his card and number and address of the census office.


What obligated to what. I ready told him no the first time. Second time i wasn't here. I am expecting he will be coming a lot during the last weeks of this month.

How do i tell him off?

At 1/17/2011 8:26 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Yup.... the same old CB dribble. Doesn't the language used sound sooooo official! Tell him to take a long walk off a short pier. Or tell him to point to the part of the Constitution where it says that the CB is allowed to violate your privacy, which is protected by the 4th amendment. Since there is no such clause and the subcommittee which oversees the CB has stipulated that no one would be fined if the "mandatory" was added to the ACS, there is no reason to answer any of the survey questions. The ACS is NOT part of the Constitution.

He may be required to contact you, but you have no obligation to contact him. Suppose you were out of the country, what then? See, all of this was constructed to sound so dreadful. The reality is that the CB won't be doing anything if you don't respond, return calls or fail to cooperate. At the end of the month, the field rep will get a list of new residences to annoy. The end of the month is coming.

At 1/19/2011 11:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can't wait till the month is over. Today i checked the mail got an envelope with a letter in it from the census people didn't bother to open it. What could it say on it?

At 1/19/2011 1:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i opened the mail. Had my rep name and number they also had this highlight "section 221 of the title 13 requires sample households participate in this survey"

Funny thing is it said on the bottom "All information will be held strictly confidential by law 13, section 214 of the u.s code" they put that in bold letters. It said they are available after 9 p.m and before 9 a.m this is just pathetic.

The second page was filled with Title 13 United States Code. The funny thing is they had chapter 7 sub chapter II section 221 Highlighted for refusal to answer or false answers.

Cathy, did you ever receive this kind of mail? and what can i expect next? This is just too much now.

At 1/19/2011 4:02 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Yes. The intro letter is SOP. What remains will be the various handwritten notes your rep may or may not chose to leave. I left everything outside exposed to the elements. Each time the rep came, it was clear that I had not touched them.

There is also the possibility of getting a fedex box delivered, but lately I haven't seen anyone posting that the CB is continuing to send them. The box contained more dribble and whining about why the CB need our info.

The CB has to walk a fine line between threats and begging. Ultimately, they are subject to the harassment laws and can be charged if they press too hard. Title 13 does not require that households participate or authorize this survey. The CB doesn't think that anyone would actually READ title 13. Well, I not only read it, I spent time researching it. Title 13 was passed in 1954, way before anyone thought of the ACS. It was amended to increase the fine by title 18, mostly to create leverage. Too many people who received the census long form sent back the census with a $100 check for the fine rather than answer the invasive questions.

It takes more that silly language and bold print to scare me. If the law really had any teeth, the CB would not be using all the nice language in the letter. Read the letter carefully for what it does not say. CB material implies a fine exists without stating that the resident will be fined. The reality is that title 13 was written for the decennial census and not for the surveys.

The whole program is designed to scare people. Having the gov use tax money to invade my privacy and lie to me makes me quite angry. The more contacts they made, the more recalcitrant I became.

At 1/19/2011 4:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So what do i now? ignore the letter and the scary words they used to get my attention? and how many more visits can i expect before the month is finished?

And what if they continue after January? can i file for harassment or something.

At 1/19/2011 5:26 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The guy came twice today. I wasn't home the first time in the morning. And now he's here ringing the bell. I'm not opening the door, but I'm getting little frighten Cathy. First the letter in the mail today than two visits today.

At 1/19/2011 8:14 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Ignore, ignore, ignore. Twice in one day is common. They are taught to be persistent and required to deliver. Failing to do so will result in a poor job performance. They get desperate towards the end. You'll do fine. And when it is over, much stronger. Most of us never get to stand up to the gov. If you were on vacation, the mail would pile up and the visits would happen and you would know nothing about it. So sit tight and pretend to be house sitting for the real resident. I promise, they do go away and it does end. I have known of 1 poster who had a visit the 1st of the following month only because a holiday fell on the last day of the month. By Feb, it will be over.

At 1/20/2011 12:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So what more can i be expecting since the month is close to an end?

At 1/20/2011 12:46 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

Just visits and an occasional phone call if the field rep has the phone number. They can't do much more than that. The only problem is trying to predict when the visits will occur. It is the element of surprise which can be unsettling. the CB has nowhere near the power that the IRS has, it only has the power generated from the words that are selected. It is implied power and not real power.

The 4th amendment - the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated an no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the persons or things to be seized.

Failing to cooperate with the CB and its field agents will not result in a court giving the a warrant to violate a person's privacy. It is all a trick to get cooperation.

At 1/20/2011 4:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

He's here again ringing the bell. Did not bother to open it. But i think he will piggy back on someone and come up to my apartment and ring my bell. He's here now. But I'm not going to open it.

At 1/20/2011 5:16 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's just getting to be overwhelming and all. Should i just open the door the next time he comes and tell him "No i am not participating in this, i will contact my congress representative and senate office and this is unconstitutional"

what should i say Cathy?

At 1/20/2011 5:24 PM, Anonymous cathy said...

It is designed to overwhelm the person it to filling out the form just to get the reps to leave. That's how they win. Some have had success telling the reps to go away and never come back, while others have gotten nowhere with that. Talking to them gives them the opportunity to site reasons for why it soooo important to comply.

It is unconstitutional. The problem is that since the CB can't improve response rates by imposing fines, and without the fines there is no standing to take the CB to court, the CB is free to run its extortion ring. Hopefully the new congress can do something about the out of control CB budget and therefore curtail the surveys.

At 1/20/2011 5:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So what should i do? It's really frustrating me!!!..I feel like telling them don't come back i wont comply, but that won't work.

At 1/20/2011 5:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh yea and he left his card again.

At 1/21/2011 10:29 AM, Anonymous cathy said...

The whole focus of the CB is to get as much info as the reps can collect. Talking to them allows them to guess and record race, gender, approx age and whatever else can be observed. The reps get to hone their skills at gaining cooperation. They have a trick of asking questions that the resident will answer and then moving on to the more invasive questions, hoping to get answers that slip out.

The reasons why I chose not to talk to my reps: I didn't want them collecting any info on me specifically. My personal info doesn't need to be tied to my address. I didn't want them to waste my time with their circular arguments. I wasn't going to convert them when they needed the info keep their jobs. The CB reps are either too stupid to realize that the CB has no authority to conduct the ACS or they are total believers that the ACS helps society. I'm not going to get a reasonable response from unreasonable people.
Some residents like to tell the reps off. If that works, then fine. Each individual rep is different. I didn't want to leave anything in writing for them. If they were going to take me to court, they were going to have to prove exactly who the resident was at my address. By not reacting at all, the CB has no idea the resident is. It is frustrating, annoying, unjust and infuriating. I have an added advantages.... I'm quite patient, VERY stubborn and extremely determined not to have the CB win.

At 1/21/2011 11:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I understand what you are saying Cathy. Today when they come i will tell him off by saying "i am not answering anything this is invasive to my privacy and unconstitutional, So don't come back"

Does that sound good?


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home