A Refusal To Answer the Questions Notice to the Census Bureau

Here is a letter you may choose to include with your census form if you are choosing to return the form unanswered or with only the headcount question answered. click on the link at the bottom of this page to get the letter in PDF form.

To whom it may concern:

Pursuant to Article 1, section 2, clause 3 of the constitution, the only information you are empowered to request is the total number of occupants at this address.

My “name, sex, age, date of birth, race, ethnicity, telephone number, relationship and housing tenure” has absolutely nothing to do with apportioning direct taxes or determining the number of representatives in the House of Representatives.

Therefore, neither Congress nor the Census Bureau has the constitutional authority to make that information request a component of the enumeration outlined in Article 1, Section 2, Clause 3.

In addition, I cannot be subject to a fine for basing my conduct on the Constitution because that document trumps laws passed by Congress.

Therefore, neither Congress nor the Census Bureau has the constitutional authority to make that information request a component of the enumeration outlined in Article 1, Section 2, Clause 3.

In addition, I cannot be subject to a fine for basing my conduct on the Constitution because that document trumps laws passed by Congress.

Interstate Commerce Commission v. Brimson, 154 U.S. 447,479 (26 May 1894):

“Neither branch of the legislative department [House of Reps. or Senate], still less any merely administrative body [such as the Census Bureau ] , established by congress, possesses, or can be invested with, a general power of making inquiry into the private affairs of a citizen.”

Kilbourn v. Thompson ,103 U.S. 168,190. We said in Boyd v. U.S. , 116 U.S. 616,630 6 Sup. Ct. 524:

“…and it cannot be too often repeated; that the principles that embody the essence of constitutional liberty and security forbid all invasions on the part of the government and it employees of the sanctity of a man’s home and the privacies of his life.”

As stated by Mr. Justice Field IN RE Pacific Ry. commission, 32 FED. 241,250:

“…of all the rights of the citizen, few are of greater importance or more essential to his peace and happiness than the right of personal security, and that involves, not merely protection of his person from assault , but exemption of his private affairs, books, and papers from inspection and scrutiny of others. Without the enjoyment of this right, all others would lose half their value…”


A Citizen of the United States of America

Here is a link to the Notice as a PDF file: A Refusal To Answer the Questions Notice to the Census Bureau


Congressional Bill H.R. 3131 To Make Participation in the American Community Survey Voluntary

Texas Republican Congressman Ted Poe has introduced a bill into Congress that would make the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey completely voluntary except for the questions pertaining to the head count for representation in government (the original intent of the census).

 Poe’s bill, H.R. 3131, is co-sponsored by Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.

To write a letter to Congress in support of Bill H.R. 3131 click on: A Letter to Congress


Bill H.R. 3131 is now Bill H.R. 931, “To make participation in the American Community Survey voluntary, except with respect to certain basic questions”, Sponsor: Rep Poe, Ted [TX-2] (introduced 3/3/2011),

The 33 additional co sponsors are:

Rep Boozman, John [AR-3]   Rep Campbell, John [CA-48]
Rep Broun, Paul C. [GA-10] Rep Coble, Howard [NC-6]
Rep Chaffetz, Jason [UT-3] Rep Culberson, John Abney [TX-7]
Rep Conaway, K. Michael [TX-11] Rep Fallin, Mary [OK-5]
Rep Dent, Charles W. [PA-15] Rep Forbes, J. Randy [VA-4]
Rep Fleming, John [LA-4] Rep Foxx, Virginia [NC-5]
Rep Fortenberry, Jeff [NE-1] Rep Hoekstra, Peter [MI-2]
Rep Gingrey, Phil [GA-11] Rep Johnson, Sam [TX-3]
Rep Issa, Darrell E. [CA-49] Rep King, Steve [IA-5]
Rep Kingston, Jack [GA-1] Rep Latta, Robert E. [OH-5]</
Rep McClintock, Tom [CA-4] Rep Olson, Pete [TX-22]
Rep Paul, Ron [TX-14] Rep Pence, Mike [IN-6]
Rep Peterson, Collin C. [MN-7] Rep Pitts, Joseph R. [PA-16]
Rep Platts, Todd Russell [PA-19] Rep Schmidt, Jean [OH-2]
Rep Shadegg, John B. [AZ-3] Rep Smith, Lamar [TX-21
Rep Thornberry, Mac [TX-13] Rep Wittman, Robert J. [VA-1]
Rep Jones, Walter B., Jr. [NC-3]  

A Letter to Congress to Support Bill H.R.3131 Regarding the ACS

Write a Letter to Congress to Support  Bill H.R. 3131

Bill H.R. 3131 will make participation in the American Community Survey Voluntary.

If you haven’t read about the bill click here.

If you are going to write an email or a letter to a member of Congress there are some things you need to know:

Place the bill reference number and title you are supporting right at the top of the letter.

Include your name, address, and zip code, and phone number (even in an email) so the staff can verify that you are a constituent of the Member of Congress you are writing to and so that they can call you for further information or send a response if one is required. If you don’t want to send your phone number at the very least include your name and address.

Do not fax a letter. They are thrown away.

Do not use a form letter. They get thrown away.

You can use the email form that is found on every Congressperson’s official website but keep in mind the same guidelines below apply to emails as well as postal letters. If you do email be sure to place the number and title of the bill in the subject line.

Keep the letter very short, well-thought out, and to the point. Do include a short paragraph on how you think the bill will impact your district, state, or country and its citizens and include your reason for supporting or opposing the bill. One 8 1/2”X 11” sheet of paper is enough and that should not be filled.

Personalize the letter by stating your reasons for supporting or opposing the bill but don’t include personal experiences such as an argument with a census worker or other personal experiences.

Place the reference number and title of the bill you are supporting right at the top of the letter.

Make sure the letter is legible, clear handwriting, or if you are typing, use a business-like font. 

Use proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation as you are representing yourself and your ideas to Congress.

Make sure you clearly indicate at the close of the letter you let the Congressperson know whether you want them to support or oppose the bill you are writing to them about.

Be sure to thank the Congressperson for taking the time to read your letter.

To find out who your representative or senator is go to: Current Members of Congress Scroll down a bit and there you will find a state by state listing of all members of congress. Each representative’s or senator’s name and photo is posted there.

To verify that you are writing to the correct congressman or woman for your district click on the “ViewMap” link next to each name and it will show you a map of the district that congressman or congress woman represents.

Clicking on the name of the senator or representative will take you to their govtrack.us profile. The first line of every profile has a link to each congressperson’s official website. Each of their official websites has contact information where you can call, email or send a postal mail letter. Many of the websites have postal mailing addresses at the bottom of the page. Others have postal mailing addresses in the CONTACT information. Either way it’s not too hard to get an address for anyone in Congress.
So here is a sample letter to a Congressperson. Feel free to make it your own.


Your full name
Your po box or street address
Your town, state and zip
phone number

The Honorable (full name of senator)
((Room #) (Name) Senate Office Building
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510


 The Honorable (full name)
(Room #) (Name) House Office Building
United States House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515Date

RE: H.R. 3131. To make participation in the American Community Survey voluntary, except with respect to certain basic questions.

Dear Senator (Last name) or Dear Representative (Last name):

I am writing to you to express my support for Bill H.R. 3131 and I am asking that you also will support it in Congress.The extremely invasive nature of the questions on the American Community Survey are a clear threat to my sense of privacy as an American citizen. I am not convinced by any means that my privacy will be secure.

In 1997, Congress, in Pub. L. 105-119, title II, Sec. 209, Nov. 26, 1997, 111 Stat. 2480, found that:
“(1) it is the constitutional duty of the Congress to ensure that the decennial enumeration of the population is conducted in a manner consistent with the Constitution and laws of the United States;

(2) the sole constitutional purpose of the decennial enumeration of the population is the apportionment of Representatives in Congress among the several States…”
Congress, by its own admission, confirmed that the sole constitutional purpose of the Census is for apportioning representatives among the States.

(Add a paragraph of your own research or findings about the ACS here)

As a result, my stong opinion on this matter that H.R.3131 should be approved by Congress.

Thank you for your time and interest.


Your name

(If you type and print out the letter sign your name in blue or black ink)


As an additional note on communicating with Congress or any other agency, here is some information on petitions. Do not bother with email petitions. They are completely invalid as the names and addresses cannot be verified. No government agency or organization takes notice of an email petition. It is highly unlikely that any email petition has ever reached its stated destination as an email petition is usually a scam designed to collect email addresses for spamming. People often sign them as a way of feeling like they’ve done their part without really having made even the smallest effort.

Tell CensusThis About Your Adventures in Senseless Land

This is where American citizens are welcome to share their adventures in Senseless Land. It is helpful to know that you are not alone and to see how other American citizens are coping with the Census Bureau’s insanity. So feel free to post your experiences in the comments at the bottom of this page. There are a few guidelines though. Not following the guidelines will make this page unpleasant for everyone and will cause your post to be deleted.


Please don’t advocate violence. I know we all have days when we feel like just blowing our tops but advocating violence on this website will get the post deleted.

Please do not use profanity. Posts with profanity in them will get deleted.

Please do not name anyone by name, not a census worker or supervisor or anyone. 

Please do not post the phone numbers or addresses or email addresses of  anyone, including census workers.

Please make sure the story is true and that it’s your story, not your neighbor’s or your first cousin twice-removed. If they have an interesting story to tell about the census then send them a link so they can tell theirs.

Please try to limit the word count to around 250. I know that might be hard because of the craziness of the census bureau but please try. Two hundred-fifty words is a double spaced, 8.5″ X 11″ sheet of paper. Limiting the word count will make it easier for everyone to read the posts.

Please, no rants or diatribes just the facts and of course, your opinion. Otherwise I’ll have to spend time editing posts which will probably provoke me to close the comments.

And of course, please keep the posts on the topic of the census.

So, with all that out of the way, Resident Apt.1 and other American citizens are looking forward to hearing about your adventures in Senseless Land.

Ding Dong, Census Calling: What to Do When the Census Worker Comes Calling

Some things may be obvious but when dealing with a federal agency some people may become intimidated. Here are a few ideas to mull over before the census worker knocks on your door.

Check the ID, get the badge number. The census worker should show you a badge that will have a watermark on it. When they do be sure to write down the worker’s name and badge number for future reference.

You do not have to open your door to a census worker. You can tell them through the door, or an intercom, to leave the materials on the doorknob and you will get it later. You do not have to explain why you are choosing to not open the door.

You DO NOT have to allow a census worker or a census supervisor into your home. If you choose to open the door and answer the questions you can do so on your porch or in your front yard.  Instances of rape and robbery perpertrated by census workers have been reported. Whether or not those were actually census workers or posers is up to the court to decide. However it has been proven that the Census Bureau has hired a certain amount of convicted felons.

Do not give any money to a census worker. There are  any number of con artists and scammers out there  posing as census workers that are preying on the elderly, the new immigrant, and the unaware. There have been reports of census workers asking for money for the census bureau, in all likeliness these people are probably not  legitimate census workers. If that happens be sure to report it.

Do not answer any legal questions. A census worker should not be asking you questions about any legal matters or your legal status. If one does ask such questions, discontinue the conversation and report the census worker by badge number.

If you choose not to answer any  of the questions politely inform the census worker and end the conversation. Do not be rude or threatening and don’t be provoked into a saber-rattling contest. Most of the census workers that knock on doors are temporary hirelings and are just trying to make some money to pay bills in these tough economic times. They are temps on the bottom rung of the monsterous ladder of the Census Bureau. Who knows what kind of job any of us would take to keep a roof over our kid’s heads. The issue isn’t always with the worker, unless they become unprofessional.

If you become rude or threatening, even if they do, it will not work for you if your case goes to court. When anyone becomes angry and belligerent it is usually a signal that they do not feel in control of a situation. 

There are two types of anger, the unthinking anger of someone who feels threatened and stops thinking clearly and the righteous indignation of someone who is wrongfully treated but continues to maintain control, continues to think clearly and takes the proper action to handle the situation. Maintain your calm and maintain control of the situation. Remember, the census workers are public servants paid by your tax dollars.

If a census worker becomes harrassing or threatening in any way close the door and report the census worker. There has been one case  reported where a census worker brought his pitbull with him on the job. The census worker got into a heated argument with an American citizen in the homeowner’s front yard and the dog bit the citizen.

Be aware that census workers do not receive a great deal of training but they are trained in what is called Refusal Aversion Training which is designed to teach the census worker how to engage the interviewee in conversation to increase the likelihood of cooperation. This sometimes take the form of friendly, engaging conversation designed to break down resistance. However, some census workers have short fuses because of the frustrations of the job. By the time one gets to your home they may not be in the best of moods or they just may be on a power-high. Either way some census workers will try intimidation by telling you that there are fines for not anwering questions. That is true. The fines start at one hundred dollars.You still have options. Some American citizens have refused to answer the questions and  told the census worker to send them the bill  but they never received notice of any fines.  To date there is no record of someone being jailed or fined for not answering questions.  One of the reasons for this is that the Census Bureau is under such scrutiny from so many agencies and civil liberties organizations that to open a can of worms by prosecuting someone for not answering questions is to invite a court case that more than likely will not be in their favor and will result in calling attention to their gross ineptitude, inefficiency, and misuse of federal dollars that it would not be worth it.

Some citizens choose to answer only the question regarding the head count for purposes of proper representation in government (the original intent of the census). As a general rule citizens who have chosen to do that have found that they get repeat visits and phone calls from the census bureau. Eventually though the visits and phone call do stop.

Some American citizens have chosen to video tape, or audio tape,  their conversations and interactions with a census worker. Usually it is done by a third party observer while the homeowner engages in interaction with the census worker. A video camera by the front door is not a bad thing. Again, do not be hostile or aggressive while performing the video taping. It is best, if possible, for the homeowner to stand inside their doorway and have the videographer stay within the home while filming over the homeowner’s shoulder.

You can choose to differentiate between the 10 questions census form and the highly invasive American Community Survey both of which require a response under the current law. You may want to choose to answer one and not the other,  or you may want to stand on civil disobedience and not answer any of them. You do have choices and you need to be prepared for any repercussions that result from your decision. To the best of my knowledge to date there just hasn’t been anything in the way of repercussions.

Of course the mandated reponse is for  you to choose to answer all of the census questions on all of the census forms. You might even want to answer the Census Bureau’s Consumer Expenditure Survey that was conducted in 2008 and may or maynot come around again. Information on the Consumer Expediture Survey can be found at You Bought What!?

The Census Bureau does not use email as a form of communication with American citizens. If you are getting emails that say they are from the Census Bureau it is most definitely a scam. You can choose to delete it or report it to the Census Bureau.

You can also ask the census worker some questions. The census worker is a public servant as such you might want to download and print this Public Servant Questionnaire PDF. Remember to hit your browser’s back button to get back to CensusThis.Wordpress.

If you have any other reasonable suggestions for helping someone deal with the census workers please feel free to leave them in the comment section. Please be sure your suggestions are helpful and not just a venting session. Thank you.

Sign me,

Resident Apt.1

You Have a Right to Question the Census Worker

You can download and print out this Public Servant Questionnaire PDF and keep it handy by your door, when the census worker knocks on your door hand the questionnaire to him or her. Be sure you have two witnesses when the census worker fills this out as the signatures of two witnesses are required. It is highly unlikely however, that the census worker is going to fill out your Public Servant Questionnaire. I suppose then, if you chose to, that it would be possible to say, “Turnabout is fair play, I guess I won’t be filling out your questionnaire either.”

The instructions for the public servant (in this case the census worker) are printed on the first page and are as follows:

 “Public Law 93-579 states in part: “The purpose of this Act is to provide certain safeguards for an individual against invasion of personal privacy by requiring Federal agencies to permit an individual to determine what records pertaining to him are collected, maintained, used, or disseminated by such agencies.” The following questions are based upon that act and are necessary in order that this individual may make a reasonable determination concerning divulgence of information to this agency.

Fill out the form completely. If any question does not apply, mark the answer with N/A or Not applicable. Do not leave any question blank.”

There are 23 questions on the Public Servant Questionnaire.

Public Servant Information
1. Full Legal Name:
2. Residence Address
City __________________________State _______ Zip ______________
Department Information:
3. Name of department, bureau, or agency by which public servant is employed:
City __________________________State _______ Zip ______________
Supervisor’s name:
4. Mailing address
City __________________________State _______ Zip ______________
Public Servant Duty
5. Will public servant uphold the Constitution of the United States?
6. Did public servant furnish proof of identity?
7. What was the nature of proof?
8. Will public servant furnish a copy of the law or regulation which authorizes this investigation?
9. Will the public servant read aloud the portion of the law authorizing the questions he will ask?
Nature of Investigation
10. Are the answers to the questions voluntary or mandatory?
11. Are the questions to be asked based upon a specific law/regulation, or are they being used as a discovery process?
12. What other uses may be made of this information?
13. What other agencies may have access to this information?
14. What will be the effect upon me if I should choose not to answer any part or all of these questions?
Basis for Investigation
15. Name of person in government requesting that this investigation be made.
16. Is this investigation ‘general’ or is it ‘special’?
17. Have you consulted, questioned, interviewed, or received information from any third party relative to this investigation?
18. If so, the identity of such third parties:
Expected Results of Investigation:
19. Do you reasonably anticipate either a civil or criminal action to be initiated or pursued based upon any of the requested information?
Agency Information
20. Is there a file of records, information, or correspondence relating to me being maintained by this agency? ______________ If yes, which?
21. Is this agency using any information pertaining to me which was supplied by another agency or government source?
22. May I have a copy of that information? ______________ If not, why not?
If so, how may I obtain a copy of that information?
23. Will the public servant guarantee that the information in these files will not be used by any department other than the one by whom he is employed? __________
If not, why not?

The questions are followed by an affirmation.


If any request for information relating to me is received from any person or agency, you must advise me in writing before releasing such information. Failure to do so may subject you to possible civil or criminal action as provided by the act.

I swear (affirm) that the answers I have given to the foregoing questions are complete and correct in every particular.

Print name: ___________________________________________________

Signature: ___________________________________________________

Date: ________(month)_________(day)___________________(year)

First Witness Printed Name: ________________________________________

First Witness Signature: ________________________________________

Second Witness Printed Name: ______________________________________

Second Witness Signature: ________________________________________

The affirmation is followed by citations for Authorities for Questions:

Authorities for Questions:

Questions 1,2,3,4:  In order to be sure you know exactly who you are giving the information to. Residence and business addresses are needed in case you need to serve process in a civil or criminal action upon this individual.

Question5:  All public servants have taken a sworn oath to uphold and defend the constitution.

Questions 6-7:  This is standard procedure by government agents and officers. See Internal Revenue Manual, MT-9900-26, Section 242.133.

Questions 8,9,10: Title 5 USC 552a, paragraph (e) (3) (A)

Question 11: Title 5 USC 552a, paragraph (d) (5), (e) (1)

Questions 12,13: Title 5 USC 552a, paragraph (e) (3) (B), (e) (3) (C)

Question 14: Title 5 USC 552a, paragraph (e) (3) (D)

Question 15: Public Law 93-579 (b) (1)

Question 16: Title 5 USC 552a, paragraph (e) (3) (A)

Questions 17-18: Title 5 USC 552a, paragraph (e) (2)

Question 19: Title 5 USC 552a, paragraph (d) (5)

Questions 20-21: Public Law 93-579 (b) (1)

Question 22: Title 5 USC 552a, paragraph (d) (1)

Question 23: Title 5 USC 552a, paragraph (e) (1 

So there you have it, a questionnaire for the census worker.

Sign me,

Resident Apt. 1



Census Bureau’s Black Hole: Photos

Just a ten minute ride from downtown DC and some of of the most beautiful, classically-designed buildings in the United States, the Census Bureau’s headquarters has to be the ugliest building I’ve ever seen, and that includes prisons.
I took these photos because I could not believe how huge and ugly the Census Bureau’s office is. Even the long-abandon west campus of the Government Hospital for the Insane* (aka St. Elizabeth’s Hospital) in DC is better looking than the Census Bureau’s brand new building. The Census Bureau is actually located in the fenced and gated Suitland Federal Center just a few minutes outside of DC, in Suitland, MD.
There are just five photos posted here because you can only take so much ugly. If you think it’s depressing to look at the photos you should see it in real life. They would have to provide a daily dose of Paxil or Zoloft to get me to go through those gates every day. It’s hard to believe that your tax dollars paid for this hot mess.
What they call the front entrance is on one end of one of the buildings. It’s not really an entrance because to enter the building you have to pass through the guardhouse. From the front it doesn’t look huge, just ugly, but it extends back 1,100 feet. That’s twenty feet longer than 3 football fields, and there are 8 floors.
The Census Bureau’s headquarters is comprised of two huge separate buildings connected by an underground street. The underground street also serves as an access to the many amenities the building contains: gym, library, credit union, medical facilities, food storage pantries, conference center, and cafeteria, the Census Bureau is also served by the Suitland Metro stop. A seven hundred foot-long covered walkway connects the Metro stop directly to the Census Bureau building (If I worked for the Census Bureau I wouldn’t want anyone to see me going in or coming out either). There is also parking for 3,000 cars and 310 bike racks.
Apparently the amenities are all underground so when the Big One hits all the census workers can rush underground and enjoy themselves while they wait for the dust to clear so they can come out and count the bodies.
Construction started in 2001 and was completed in two phases—because there are two buildings—to the jingling of 331 million dollars.
This building, completed in 2007, is ugly enough to have been built in the 70′s. Although, when I was there (in June this year) there was still plenty of construction going on. I guess they’re digging an even bigger black hole to throw all your money into.
They say there is an 80 acre woodland view. There might be, somewhere. What I saw on at least 2 sides were strip malls across both streets and an enormous pile of earth (and I mean enormous, it blocked the view of the building from the street) in the parking lot inside the fence. Apparently that is what they meant by woodland view, there were two trees growing on it.
Eight stories and an area of 1,508,013 square feet of mud-hut ugly, this building has a curved, snake-like design ( how apropos) and snake-like bars that look like they are all side-winding up the building. Or they could be likened to the kind of sticks you see on mud huts in National Geographic.
OK, so they’ve been labeled “Woodland-facing facades” and they are supposed to act as sunshades, they still look like snakes. Is it possible that the whole thing was designed on a subconscious level?
What is more mind-boggling is that this monstrosity won 11 architectural awards between 2002 and 2009, which just proves that the Emperor still isn’t wearing any clothes.

* The Government Hospital for the Insane is about to be renovated and government offices are going to replace the autopsy amphitheatre, the therapy rooms (nothing like a tub full of ice to make you snap out of it, they should keep those)the med lockers(they should keep those too) and all the other amenities of the cloistered life of the insane. Uncle Sam should have saved himself 331 million dollars and simply moved the census bureau up the street to St. Elizabeth’s. Oh wait, both campuses wouldn’t be big enough to house all the census bureau inmates, uh, I mean workers.


Front Entrance to the Census Bureau's Headquarters

In Case Anyone Wonders What That Ugly, Godforsaken Building Is

Side view of a section of the Census Bureau's Headquarters

Another side view section of the Census Bureau's HQ

Three quarter view of the Census Bureau's Headquarters

Editor’s note: Resident Apt.1 has just learned that the census bureau has been renting an additional 6,654 square feet of floorspace in an Islamic mosque just 16 miles from it’s leviathan headquarters to the tune of twenty-three thousand dollars a month. The mosque and some of its members have been linked to terrorism in the US.