In a democracy, a census is meant to map inequalities and injustices. It is also meant to reveal how those inequalities and injustices can be diminished fairly. A census is also meant to improve democracy itself.
A census should, ideally, reveal accurate knowledge about a society. The purpose of the knowledge is to assist the improvement of society.
To expect people to provide the knowledge through methods likely to diminish the quality of that society, and possibly even the long-term quality of their own lives, is therefore ridiculous.
Can you guarantee census data's security? Cyber security advisor @MacGibbon says no. https://t.co/m4FrqYnQtV— News Breakfast (@BreakfastNews) August 11, 2016
No justifiable census is meant to increase inequalities, injustices, and/or mistrust, yet the ongoing authoritarian census process in Australia is quite likely to do immeasurable harm. The 2016 Australian Census of Population and Housing has already diminished public trust in government practices considerably.
If the ABS doesn’t resurrect its website by September 23, can we claim $180 a day off our taxes? #censusfail pic.twitter.com/E0IAlMOokV— Jen Dudley-Nicholson (@jendudley) August 10, 2016
The #censusfail can easily be traced back to its origins.— Tim Jones (@Forthleft2) August 10, 2016
Authoritarianism undermined its dignity, govt did the rest pic.twitter.com/hFSiHJUSYa
If you've got nothing to hide: these are the men hiding #naurufiles abuse of children behind wall of secrecy #auspol pic.twitter.com/SWGziIsB1y— Michael Woodhead (@mpwoodhead) August 10, 2016
Thank you @1petermartin for this history of @ABSStats obscurantism https://t.co/DuO0iQzxeN #CensusFail— Adelaide Reporting (@AdelaideAdagia) August 13, 2016
With privacy, there is freedom. With secrecy, there is usually abuse.
Statistics, economics and demography are intertwined. This is why privacy must always be upheld and secrecy prevented.
'The ABS has absolutely proven beyond any reasonable doubt that we cannot just “take their word for it”.' @dannolan https://t.co/tIU0hrElXE— Mark Colvin (@Colvinius) August 10, 2016
Census attack could set back introduction of e-voting, experts say https://t.co/s9hOcMclmg pic.twitter.com/BrAZMYH8Rb— SBS News (@SBSNews) August 10, 2016
In a reasonably intact democracy, self-respecting, reasonably well-informed individuals will, as is their right and duty, protest whenever anyone, particularly someone with an authoritarian personality, attempts to coerce reasonable people to behave unreasonably.
It is unreasonable to expect people to give up their privacy. To do so is to ask them to give up their freedom, which no reasonable person would ever do, except in relation to a greater good, such as world peace. But few people are that brave.
Governments frequently fail to uphold reasonably acceptable standards. They fail to enforce reasonably acceptable laws. They fail to provide reasonable oversight of the duties and responsibilities they delegate. That is why you and I and Queen Adelaide must lead the way, dear guest.
Today is Queen Adelaide's birthday. As you may be aware, Adelaide grew up during the Napoleonic Wars. She had a relatively enlightened education and a clear sense of morality and frugality.
As a religious young woman, Adelaide was manipulated into a marriage to a much older man. She was required to migrate to a country far away from her own and learn a different language. From 1830 onwards, she had a high profile career on the world stage.
Adelaidezone (Breaking) News: Queen Adelaide Day https://t.co/NnCjuWYW6a— Adelaide Reporting (@AdelaideAdagia) August 12, 2016
#OnThisDay in 1792 Durchlaucht Prinzessin Adelheid von Sachsen-Meiningen was born. https://t.co/FRvj0CMBeX pic.twitter.com/ZV2AZNju7c— Adelaide Reporting (@AdelaideAdagia) August 12, 2016
Today is Queen #Adelaide's birthday. How much do you really know about her? https://t.co/Mq4RyagCnq pic.twitter.com/kF6k3hjxI5— Adelaide Reporting (@AdelaideAdagia) August 12, 2016
In 1831, the year after Adelaide became Queen of Great Britain, a census in that part of the world revealed there were 16.54 million people within the combined area of England, Wales and Scotland. Meanwhile, migration to Australia continued.
The first census in New South Wales had occurred in 1828. There was a census in the United States of America in 1830. The German Confederation conducted a population count through the German Customs Union in 1834.
"Clearly we didn't think this through. On any level..." say @ABSCensus. #CensusFail https://t.co/TZVfvJPDX3— Cathie Wilson (@copycat21c) August 10, 2016
New blog. The real #CensusFail: when the rules of the game change and you don't even notice https://t.co/Xcl8kz3Qrz— Katharine Murphy (@murpharoo) August 10, 2016
It can be seen, from 19th century census results, that rapidly rising populations in unsustainable societies have tended to cause civil unrest.
In addition, whenever there are authoritarian power structures within families, and in societies more generally, including in the state itself, then social and political instability, mob violence and poverty are likely to be consequences.
Add to this the economic pressures on large families in poverty and the results become easy to predict.
Possible hack of private information cannot be ruled out following #CensusFail, experts say https://t.co/5g3pJwUAib— ABC News (@abcnews) August 10, 2016
When Janet Albrechtsen @jkalbrechtsen in The @Australian writes this, then #CensusFail actually begins to make sense pic.twitter.com/Y9epEQcSsn— Kerry Seebohm (@KezzerOz) August 10, 2016
So those census forms that were saved but not submitted because ppl couldn't finish: they're stored in plaintext. Not encrypted. #CensusFail— Asher Wolf (@Asher_Wolf) August 10, 2016
CENSUS: Govt sacked thousands of Public Sector workers & fell for the spin of so called private IT experts. #censusfail #auspol— Chris Cullen (@cpc8) August 10, 2016
When vital knowledge is available, it is usually in a format unlikely to be comprehensible to the average person. That is why individuals with the ability to convey that knowledge have a responsibility to put it into a format likely to be understood by the vast majority of the public.
When vital knowledge is difficult to obtain, why is that?
What I really want to read about is what Kalisch did to data retention and linkage at the AIHW, and how he ended up at the ABS— Asher Wolf (@Asher_Wolf) August 13, 2016
What is the value of the census? What privacy rights should we have? https://t.co/VmmKV4Syt7 #census2016 #infosec pic.twitter.com/7UcDa4xmZC— CeBIT Australia (@CeBITAus) August 13, 2016
Gotta Catch Em All - today's cartoon in @themercurycomau https://t.co/iQEM3va0mk pic.twitter.com/XCcOAkn6A8— Pi-rate:Monkey (@jonkudelka) August 13, 2016
Authoritarianism is an unfair and unjust way to deal with social problems. It does nothing to prevent social, political and economic problems from occurring. It merely suppresses those problems and punishes reasonable protesters.
Social conflict causes prosperity to decline and when prosperity declines there is social conflict. It is a vicious circle authoritarian figures want to stop through force and emotion, not through reason and evidence.
Social deviance is any action statistically at odds with social norms. What happens, then, when a society becomes unsure of the norms to be upheld? Who are the leaders reflecting widely acceptable, reasonably respectable norms?
A poignant cartoon about protecting #privacy in a digital world @mdavidcartoons pic.twitter.com/OPOvIVuvJM #census2016 #mycensus #censusfail— Matthew Rimmer (@DrRimmer) August 11, 2016
Barrie Cassidy saying we shouldn't blame #censusfail on Grand Mal or his Ministers.— Tim Jones (@Forthleft2) August 11, 2016
They defunded ABS & left it leaderless.#breakfastnews
These lawyers caught Trump lying 30 times. His responses are glorious: https://t.co/9qtIbXREgQ pic.twitter.com/h4cOh6TPDi— Slate (@Slate) August 11, 2016
In Australia, many government ministers were indoctrinated as children into a prejudiced, reactionary view of the world. In many families, abusiveness is still considered normal, whether it involves threats or physical abuse or rude remarks or a misguided ideology.
Unenlightened individuals often gain pleasure at the expense of other people's misfortunes. They are bullies. They are also cowards. They enjoy seeing other people suffer because it suppresses their own fears and sense of worthlessness.
Psychological difficulties are exacerbated when people are stressed, which is why I do my best to diminish everyone's stress. Being able to think well, find useful information and make good decisions is the greatest wealth anyone can possess. Those are also the most useful resources to share.
Ten News can reveal some paper copies of census are being mailed back 2 people. The barcode Being misread by Aust Post machines #Censusfail— Sandra Sully (@Sandra_Sully) August 11, 2016
The nastiness of authoritarianism is prevalent in all societies in the 21st century. It is also widespread in most cultures within those societies. We all have a duty to put an end to that nastiness and be nice to each other, even though satire will probably still be required in several instances.
Media: Can we ask questions?— Sean Parnell (@seanparnell) August 11, 2016
Kalisch: No, we are the ABS so we ask the questions around here thank you very much.
Media: Buuut #CensusFail
I can care about refugees, homeless & Indigenous ppl --and have a right to make a fuss when my privacy is infringed by the ABS. #CensusFail— Asher Wolf (@Asher_Wolf) August 11, 2016
Based on recent events, I am longer calling it the Turnbull government but, more accurately, the Mal administration.— Dave Donovan (@davrosz) August 11, 2016
ABS staff blame the Turnbull government for #CensusFail: https://t.co/TmuqJGOOtI #auspol #census2016 pic.twitter.com/FTZ38xyobl— I Put LNP Last!! (@johndory49) August 12, 2016
Authoritarianism occurs whenever someone thinks they should have more power than anyone else. It often begins in the dark, abusive depths of intolerant religious bigotry. That bigotry encourages secret perversions to thrive in an atmosphere of fear, anger and obscurantism.
Seems to me an important start point to #CensusFail is Abbott & Hockey, who see no value in reliable data, deciding ABS could be slashed.— Paul Barratt (@phbarratt) August 11, 2016
ABS staff offered counselling, and warned to expect backlash from the public over #censusfail. https://t.co/ST12ZsqJ1r— Josh Taylor (@joshgnosis) August 11, 2016
The devil is in the detail. Another brilliant cartoon from @davpope #auspol #censusfail pic.twitter.com/BVG4vzr3A9— Spectator (@WeTheVoters2013) August 12, 2016
Comments on #CensusFail by the CEO of Freelancer (from @Linkedin) https://t.co/hP0KCRImF6 pic.twitter.com/WrbfJa9Ix0— Craig Thomler (@craigthomler) August 11, 2016
Here's the genius who brought you the NBN (no bloody network) and #Censusfail: pic.twitter.com/ATSyEYZzjR— Dave Donovan (@davrosz) August 11, 2016
Privacy and security are intertwined, yet abuses often occur when there is a lack of openness about what is acceptable and what is not. In Australia, there continues to be much abuse of children, and of adults. Yet abuse occurs in every country. It is certainly prevalent in Adelaide, just as it is in cities, towns and country areas across the globe. The reason why it is happening is rarely examined accurately.
Few people have an adequate amount of knowledge, skill, financial resources and political support to provide their own children, and other children, with the start in life they need. Both the poor and the middle class have children they have an inability to support adequately on their own, while wealth and other resources are concentrated towards supporting the children of the rich.
ABS needs to eat humble pie and admit they failed to plan for demand. #CensusFail https://t.co/8M4STlbiap— David Olsen (@DDsD) August 11, 2016
#censusfail coverage has also perpetuated myth we're the innocent victims of foreign hackers, when we're the world's worst cybercriminals.— Bernard Keane (@BernardKeane) August 10, 2016
How #CensusFail may shape Australia:— Adelaide Reporting (@AdelaideAdagia) August 12, 2016
1. Stop secrecy to stop ALL abuse.
2. Uphold #privacy to uphold freedom.
3. Become enlightened.
Just as Queen Adelaide married Silly Billy in order to maintain peace and political stability to the best of her ability, it is your duty to understand how your own leadership can be put to best effect. Have you just arrived here from the parlour meant for you and your enlightenment?
As Queen Adelaide, Queen Alexandra, and I have decided that your future birthdays should be peaceful, sensible and in keeping with statistical norms, we wish to ensure that you are aware of our concerns for your future. We already have a form for you to fill in.