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  1. #11
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    Plain and simple, the gathering and control of knowledge/information is something that should be as decentralized as possible, particularly where government is concerned. The control of information is power. Centralizing it closer into the depths of the white house is a potential to withhold information and manipulate it. It's taking the process further from the public eye. Saying one needs evidence to to accuse one of having ulterior motives is malign to the fact that people should seek to abate that possibility as much as possible. Allowing moves such as these to continue, accumulating power where it does not belong, is not in our best interest.

    You can ride off each and every little thing as being inconsequential, but what people scarcely realize, until it's too late, is that these things accumulate until they contribute to a much greater problem. This fatal error in judgment repeats itself continually, and is embedded in many of the problems we have today. Every issue has a macro and micro significance. What may seem insignificant on the small scale may very well have much greater implications when one looks at the big picture. Inherently, this means things can be both insignificant and significant at the same time.

  2. #12
    Glowy Goopy Goodness The_Liquid_Laser's Avatar
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    The problem of counting minorities and the homeless has long been known. Census Bureau statisticians believe that a vigorous hard count, supplemented by adding in the names of actual people missed by head counters but still found in public records, is likely to lead to a far more defensible count than sampling-based adjustment.
    It's funny that you posted this, because I interviewed for a statistician job at the Census Bureau in '99. It was a day long interview and I talked with several different statisticians. Since it was the year before the census all they talked about was the census and how much they wanted to use sampling techniques. According to the statisticians at the Census Bureau the traditional way is horribly inaccurate, while their sampling techniques are extremely accurate.

    This article makes it sound like statisticians actually want a hard count. They don't. In '99 what they wanted was to use sampling techniques. (Funny how statisticians seem to trust their own statistics.) Now they may have changed their approach since then, if they don't believe that congress will every allow sampling. But the last thing they want is to stick with the current method, since they know that it requires a ton of money and effort and isn't terribly accurate.
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  3. #13
    Senior Member ptgatsby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    Now they may have changed their approach since then, if they don't believe that congress will every allow sampling. But the last thing they want is to stick with the current method, since they know that it requires a ton of money and effort and isn't terribly accurate.
    They have changed it... inaccurate in politics is a polite way of saying 'corrupt', I find. Keep in mind that Gregg and many others actively campaigned against funding for any kind of sampling. There is definitely something funny about the whole thing, and it's been known for a while.

    From what I can reconstruct, the story goes that the gerrying of census was pretty ingrained, the white house wanted to use statistcal methods to break down this issue and said the census was going to be watched carefully (not "brought into the white house" exactly), and the person who was dead against (politically entrenched or well intentioned, I don't know) it decided to walk. Then the right wing section of the media/blogs took this and built an entire story out of it, and it's been repeated since. Hasn't made it far outside of that sphere, but... that's as far as I can construct it.

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptgatsby View Post
    They have changed it... inaccurate in politics is a polite way of saying 'corrupt', I find. Keep in mind that Gregg and many others actively campaigned against funding for any kind of sampling. There is definitely something funny about the whole thing, and it's been known for a while.

    From what I can reconstruct, the story goes that the gerrying of census was pretty ingrained, the white house wanted to use statistcal methods to break down this issue and said the census was going to be watched carefully (not "brought into the white house" exactly), and the person who was dead against (politically entrenched or well intentioned, I don't know) it decided to walk. Then the right wing section of the media/blogs took this and built an entire story out of it, and it's been repeated since. Hasn't made it far outside of that sphere, but... that's as far as I can construct it.
    Incorrect, if you're talking about the issue of moving the Census.. There was an entire story about it before he decided to walk away from the position, hence my starting this topic earlier in the week.

  5. #15

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    Wait, what other technique would they use, if not sampling?

    They can't seriously justify the cost of counting everyone, can they?

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
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  6. #16
    Senior Member ptgatsby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Risen View Post
    Incorrect, if you're talking about the issue of moving the Census.. There was an entire story about it before he decided to walk away from the position, hence my starting this topic earlier in the week.
    I don't see how that is incompatible with what I said.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptgatsby View Post
    Then the right wing section of the media/blogs took this and built an entire story out of it, and it's been repeated since. Hasn't made it far outside of that sphere, but... that's as far as I can construct it.
    I assumed you meant this as a chronological progression after Gregg walking off the job, which would be the reverse order of how things progressed.

  8. #18
    Glowy Goopy Goodness The_Liquid_Laser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    Wait, what other technique would they use, if not sampling?

    They can't seriously justify the cost of counting everyone, can they?
    (Heh just saw this sorry for the late reply.) Yes the conservative argument is to count everyone. The Census Bureau uses sampling for almost everything they do, but when it comes to the official, once a decade US census, they still have to count everyone the old fashioned way. It's both expensive and inaccurate, but this is the method the Republican party prefers because it's known that minorities are underrepresented in the census. Minorities tend to vote Democrat, so an accurate census would give more representatives to Democratic leaning states.
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