Article I, Section 2, of that document no one in Washington seems ever to have read:
Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States … according to their respective Numbers … The actual Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years.
This is the Constitutional mandate of the Bureau of the Census. All the rest of this stuff is extraneous:
Received an envelope with frightening-looking shields and seals, urging “the person who resides at this address, not you personally” go and participate in Census questionnaire on their website. If I don’t, they said citing ## XX Article of YY US Law, I’ll be thrown in jail or charged a hefty penalty. It’s all for the greater good, they said — to let the government know where, in which community little children cry from hunger and which ethnic group in particular these crying children belong to.
This is the sort of thing that raised the ire of our old friend Nunya Bidness, who probably would have responded almost exactly this way:
I bet some govmint clerk will be a bit surprised to find West-African Chinese man of 85 and income of 250K, living in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, badly in need of hearing aid, guide dog and a life-supply of Prozac.
The point is not so much to put one over on the Feds — though they richly deserve it — as it is to make their figures (more) unreliable, comparable with, for instance, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which over the past six years has been turned into a propaganda mill, and not a good propaganda mill at that.