Pandemic Diary Day 36

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April 29, 2020

My friend Sonny L. works for the US Census and encouraged me to become a census taker, and then the virus struck. This means I, and hundreds of others will most likely not be knocking on doors, so please take it upon yourself to to your part.

But why should you? Here is what is at stake. First, money. In Fiscal Year (FY) 2017, 316 federal spending programs relied on 2010 Census-derived data to distribute $1.504 trillion to state and local governments, nonprofits, businesses, and households across the nation. This figure accounted for 7.8 percent of Gross Domestic Product in FY2017.

But also power. The census determines the number of seats each state is appropriated in the US Congress.

Reapportionment will also determine how many Electoral College votes each state receives, since each state gets electoral votes equivalent to its number of House seats plus two for its Senate delegation.

An undercounted state will result in under representation, which is why it is so important that everyone is counted.

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If you are the least bit interested in making sure your state receives its appropriate monies and representatives, answer the census for heavens sakes.

In March most households were sent a letter explaining how to complete the questionaire on line. It is quick, simple and not only the wave of the future, but seriously, did I mention it is quick and simple? You can also do it via telephone.

All homes will receive a paper questionnaire if they do not first respond online or by phone. You get a second chance to do the right thing.

Did you know that your answers are held under lock and key for 72 years? That is right, all your paranoia about giving the government these answers is unfounded, they can’t give that information to anyone. And seriously, you don’t think the government doesn’t know everything there is to know about you already? Did you file income taxes? Do you have a drivers license? Do you pay property taxes? Who are you kidding?

While I don’t necessarily want to expose myself by knocking on doors to take a census count, most people do not want to let strangers into their home either. As a result the Census is considering making greater use of administrative records than initially planned. These records are things that we have already shared with the government, such as social security or the post office, and the IRS as I mentioned.

But don’t make their work harder than it already is, just fill in your answers on-line or use the mail in forms if that makes you feel more comfortable.

The virus is going to change the way the census is taken this year and going forward, and that is probably a good thing.

Trivial Things

My Horoscope for today: Is a friend backing out again? Tell him he’d best be sure, because it’s the last time you’re going to put up with it.

The NYT Crossword Puzzle: It was fun but I got stuck in the upper left corner because I was sure of the word hot

San Francisco weather: 62 degrees and breezy

NYSE DOW opened at: 24490

Italian word of the day: deposito (deposit)

Spanish word of the day: saneamiento (clean-up)

OED word of the day: awesomesauce

Days under Shelter In Place: 47

Reading: The Gay Metropolis by Charles Kaiser

Reading Canto VII, VIII, IX of Dante’s Purgatorio

A Special Something: In Berkeley, CA people are turning their Little Free Libraries into Little Free Pantries.

My Black and White Picture of the Day

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Something Silly From the Internet:

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If you liked this please clap and let me know. Thank you

My travel blog www.PassportandBaggage.com and my www.ArtandArchitecture-sf.com blog are quiet due to the Pandemic. I need to write, so here I go.

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