Did Ed Snowden do the right thing?

Daniel Fussell dfussell at byu.edu
Tue Jun 25 20:11:43 MDT 2013

On 06/24/2013 08:35 PM, S. Dale Morrey wrote:
> To be fair, the Census is a power enumerated in the constitution.
> Knowledge of this information does help with a vital aspect of government
> which is the economic planning for the country. Individual census data is
> sealed and strictly protected for decades.  I can't say as I would enjoy
> it, but just like voting & jury duty, the census is something necessary to
> the proper operation of a representative government, therefore it really is
> your duty as a citizen to comply with the request/demand.
> The extra additional questions may seem a bit intrusive, but they really
> are just aggregated, the data isn't going to be used for nefarious
> purposes.  Even if you put in something completely different from the IRS &
> Census data, for instance you wouldn't get an audit because the IRS isn't
> allowed access to that particular set of information.
I agree that commute times are important for planning new roads. The 
number of people car pooling would be also.  I don't see any reason why 
the federal government needs to know how many cars I have, how old they 
are, what my car payments are, my mortgage values, payments and interest 
rates, annual property taxes, estimated home values, do I have a toilet 
and a refrigerator, medical insurance coverage and bill, auto insurance 
coverage and bill, power bill, natural gas bill, average grocery bill, 
how many married and/or cohabitating people live in my home beside me 
and my spouse [if present], my fertility, my mental health, how many 
illegitimate children I have, my last tax return and various line items 
from the return, how many hours I work, when I work, how much I have 
been employed in the last year, how much water I drink, my height and 
weight, how many times I've been to the doctor, how often I go on 
vacation, etc.  Nor am I willing to put down the same information for 
any and all adults cohabitating in my residence during the last year.  
I'm pulling these questions from memory, so some might not be perfectly 
accurate, but it's as close as I can recall.  You are welcome to view 
the census survey yourself if you think I'm exaggerating.  The 2013 
survey is 14 pages, they may have slimmed things down a bit.

I don't see where in the constitution that is says the census is for 
anything more than population count for redistricting, period. There is 
nothing about a mandatory "American Community Survey".  If they want 
more information than population count, they will have to ask my 
representative for it.  Then my rep can tell the executive branch where 
to go and how to get there.  If he doesn't, I'll be happy to tell my rep 
he should have done so when he comes to get the information, and suggest 
he return from whence he came and do it right this time.

<rant> In fact, any program that needs this kind of information, is 
likely to be the same programs whose very federal existence I despise. 

;-Daniel Fussell

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