Sunday, January 17, 2010

Republican Census Scam

Somehow, I have ended up on a mailing list for the Republican National Committee. I suppose it could be some friend or comrade having a bit of fun (or vengeance) for my political views (which, of course, I would never inflict upon others), but more likely it is the result of purchasing some product that conservatives tend to purchase and getting on a mailing list (I'm looking at YOU, The Teaching Company).

So I've gotten the odd robo-call or money-raising phone call (and if I get a live person, I explain that they've made a horrible, horrible mistake and try to keep the amusement out of my voice), and I get the odd bit of RNC mail, but the most recent entry was enlightening for the depths of its deception.

"Do Not Destroy - Official Document" says the envelope and the window in front said "Census Document". So its a good bet it will not get opened by real Republicans (Who, we've been told, HATE the census). But upon opening, it isn't THAT census, but rather a 2010 Congressional District Census commissioned by the Republican Party. And its a pretty hilarious document, and while I am tempted to fisk it, I won't waste more of your time except to pull a few choice quotes:
1. Do you generally identify yourself as a: o Conservative Republican, o Moderate Republican, o Liberal Republican, o Independent Voter who leans Republican, o Other ____
Leaving aside that there ARE no Liberal Republicans anymore, I think I would go with Other: SANE.
4. Do you believe that the huge, costly Democrat-passed stimulus bill has been effective in creating jobs or stimulating America's economy?
That would be the huge, costly stimulus bill that was passed under the Bush administration, right? (Oh yeah, the line about out-of-control spending is laid at the Dem's feet as well, ignoring the last eight years of drunken-sailor fiscal policy from the previous Administration).
16. Do you believe the Republican Party should continue to embrace social issues?
No, I think the Republican Party should START embracing social issues. Like that nice conservative who's fighting against Prop. 8.

Anyway, it is pretty much standard double-think boilerplate ("Do you believe the Obama Administration is right in dramatically scaling back our nation's military" - if by "dramatically scaling back" you mean "giving them more money," yeah, sure), but the the cute bit is at the end - The Census Certification and Reply section, where it begs for a hefty donation to the party. And if you DON'T want to donate, then please include 15 bucks to help defray the cost of processing the "Census Document".

It is scam, pure and simple. Your answers will not be processed, but you check will surely be cashed. The idea of wrapping this up in an official-looking document pretty much shows how little the RNC things of its cash-cows. I'm sorry, its supporters.

I get donation mail from the Dems all the time, and THEY are always inviting me to overpriced soirees and neighborhood meetings (I blame the Lovely Bride - she made a donation the McGinn). The RNC is trying to scare you here and make you pay for the privilege. And you wonder why they as a party are being held hostage by their least rational faction.

Oh, and the "census" came with a personalized letter from Michael Steele, the beleagured head of the RNC, where he says:
Mr. Grubb, to win November, the Republican Party must be better organized than the Democrats every step of the way.
Here's a hint, Mike. Wasting your money sending this type of bunco to liberals is just asking for a mocking, and shows that you guys are still the party of the Big Con. Seriously, if you want to be ahead of the Democrats, don't tell me what your plans are.

But that should be obvious, right? You don't need a census to figure that out.

More later, (And I DID shred the document, guys - come and get me!)

Update: And here I thought this was a new thing. And here I was so honored to be chosen by the RNC to represent Washington's 8th Congressional District.

Update Update: Apparently this is getting a bit more attention, from the normally conservative-friendly Politico. The money paragraph?

"Of course, duping people is the point. ... That's one of the reasons why it works so well,” said one Republican operative familiar with the program, who said it’s among the RNC’s most lucrative fundraising initiatives.