- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 30, 2009

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

In your article about Rep. Michele Bachmann’s vow to give census takers only minimal information, you report that federal bureaucrats are upset by the news (“Census protocol challenged,” Nation, June 18). “Shelly Lowe, a spokeswoman for the [U.S. Census Bureau], said Mrs. Bachmann is ‘misreading’ the law,” according to your reporter Stephen Dinan.

He goes on to say that Ms. Lowe “sent a portion of the U.S. legal code that says anyone over 18 years of age who refuses to answer ‘any of the questions’ on the census can be fined up to $5,000.”

It would be interesting to see the White House’s reaction if thousands of Americans took the same stand as the congresswoman. Like her, I am a bit uneasy knowing that a group like ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) with the chronic legal problems it has had, will have anything to do with personal information from my household. Identity theft is already a serious problem in this country. Putting President Obama’s minions in charge of gathering national household data not only is inviting a pandemic of crimes but also is laying the groundwork for the jackbooted authoritarians on the Obama team who believe one “should never let a serious crisis go to waste.”

With this administration so convinced it can take better care of us than we can of ourselves, it might be a good time to remember C.S. Lewis’ comment: “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victim may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated, but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience.”

RICK CENTNER

Arlington, Texas

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