Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The Census - Write Your Answers Down And Be Counted

Census night was last night. Every five years we have to complete it. By law you have to complete it. Not sure what the punishment for not filling in the form would be but I assume that they don't include any sort of capital punishment. It wouldn't be a wise move to kill someone who wouldn't be involved in the population count. Although, it would mean not having to collect so many forms.

It is now possible to do the census online. I guess this is to discourage the Australian love of inserting funny comments. I know I used to do this in exams on ocassion but only if I had had enough time to be satisfied with all of my answers. No point in wasting valuable exam time for the amusement of the exam marker unless I could be sure that there were no more marks to gain.

Seeing as there were only three people in our household on census night it only took about 40 minutes to complete and that was made slightly easier by one member being under 15 and the majority of questions were not aimed at that age bracket so these questions were not to be answered. I think that the census discriminates against Catholics and polygamists as there is only room for the details of up to six persons. Any more and you need to fill in another form.

Q20. Does the person ever need someone to help with, or be with them for, self care activities?
- Yu-Jin is lazy when it comes to getting his clothes ready and feeding himself. It was almost appropriate to answer yes on his behalf.

Q51. In the last twelve months did the person spend anytime doing voluntary work through an organisation or group?
- All of my work is involuntary. I work because I have to pay the bills and live.

Q55. How many bedrooms are there in this dwelling?
- The choices are to fill in the number of rooms or none. None? How does that classify as a dwelling? What about the residents of Australind who had a tornado go through the other day - they may have a dwelling without rooms?

Q5. What is the person's relationship to Person 1/Person 2?
- Could get tricky in Tasmania to answer this question correctly.

Q19. What is the person's religion?
- Apparently 30000 people replied "Jedi" in the last census.

Q32. For each female, how many babies has she ever given birth to?
- Obviously we are still waiting for the first man to give birth. Damn, when is that breakthrough likely? Interestingly, the females must be over 15 to answer this question. A little bit of bias here, methinks, to not acknowledge the problem of teenage mothers.

Q42. Which best describes the Industry or business of the employer at the location where the person works?
- No options for:
a) at risk from cheap/imported goods
b) at risk from overseas cheap labour
- No questions regarding work for under 15s. Slave labour must be non-existent or young, homeless people with a lack of schooling who must enter the workforce are being ignored.

Q43. What are the main goods produced or main services provided by the employer's business?
- answers could get a bit saucy in the sex industry.

Q44. Last week, how many hours did the person work in all jobs?
- Attended work or actually did something? Trade unionists may find this difficult to answer truthfully.

Disappointing that the real questions weren't asked.
- Do you like the cricket?
- Which footy team do you follow?
- How much money do you piss up against the wall each week?

And it will be another five years before the nation sees this much stay-at-home enjoyment again. Shame, isn't it?

6 comments:

Hammysmum said...

I thought all people, regardless of age, were to be counted! How,then, does that include children born to under 15s?
I agree, it was a stoopid question about the births and men.

James said...

I was watching the Today show which was interviewing a census guru, and he said that there were almost 70,000 avid followers of "The Force". Be interesting how many they get this time, now that it has been advertised.

ben said...

When and were are the results of the census published?

Concerning question 19, I heard the French Government deported the Jews in 1941 from looking at their administrative records. This question is full of danger. Do you trust the Government to safeguard your privacy?

Hammy said...

Ben, you have a point there. Was Q.19 about religion? Do I trust my Government with the information that I have provided? A little, but not totally. By law the information gathered is not to be distributed to other Government departments or indeed others. But, as we all know, that is only a law away from being changed.

If there is a full-scale war between Israel and the surrounding Arab nations then there would be no need for our Govt to deport the Jews from this country as they may leave volutarily to fight for the homeland.

ben said...

Do you think, they will resist the temptation to look for potential terrorist from the census data?

Hammy said...

You're on today, aren't you Ben? That's quite a valid point but I don't think that they had enough questions aimed at outing the terrorists in our society. Unless the questions for name, religion, citizenship were to be looked at much more closely. Not a great deal to go on based on the questions asked.