Penny Foolish

The STATISTICAL ABSTRACT OF THE UNITED STATES is published by the Census Bureau of the U.S. Department of Commerce to provide an annual update of the social and economic conditions in the United States. It has been published by the Government since 1878. For those who are concerned by such things, it is not the work of the UN or Liberals, or intellectual do-gooders. It is not opinion or pie-in-the-sky, it is simply as Joe Friday would say, “Just the facts”.

This year’s edition, 2012, is the last to be published. The Commerce Department has decided as a cost-cutting measure to abolish the office that collects and disseminates these statistics. So the STATISTICAL ABSTRACT along with its sister publication the CITY-COUNTY DATA BOOK will be cancelled.

The ABSTRACT is considered to be one of the five MOST IMPORTANT reference works in the country. It is so highly valued that one librarian writing in its defense said, “If my library were on fire, and I could save only one book, the Abstract is the book I would save”.

How much will be saved by this cost-cutting measure? Get ready, wait for it . . . wait for it . . . $ 2.9 MILLION!!!!

That’s it. Wow! Is the budget balanced now?

For the cost of 40 minutes of the war in Afghanistan, the cost-cutters will destroy a reference work that has been published for over 130 years.

For the tax cuts enjoyed by 12 MILLIONAIRES, we will be denying our children and ourselves knowledge about our own country and its government.

What next? Burning the libraries?



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