Monday, May 21, 2012

Dumb Congressman wants us all as dumb as he is

Look, I know this country is largely innumerate -- we aren't practiced at thinking in numbers -- but this just beats all.

The American Community Survey (ACS) may be the most important government function you’ve never heard of, and it’s in trouble. …

It tells Americans how poor we are, how rich we are, who is suffering, who is thriving, where people work, what kind of training people need to get jobs, what languages people speak, who uses food stamps, who has access to health care, and so on.

It is, more or less, the country’s primary check for determining how well the government is doing — and in fact what the government will be doing.

NYTimes, 5/20/12

Some dimwit -- Republican, naturally -- thinks having the Census Bureau create smart, data-based snapshots of what's going on with us somehow threatens our liberty. And the ACS costs money; guess he thinks that is theft from the one percent. And above all, it is "random." Yup, it is a properly designed survey; Mr. Dumb Congressman doesn't get to decide who is interviewed; neither do our super secret security spooks -- the ACS surveys a "random" sample of us. The concept is beyond some people.

Last week the Republican House of Representatives voted to yank funding from the ACS. These people apparently want to trash the country and they are so stupid they don't even know they are doing it.

Here's how one development outfit uses ACS data.

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