Child labor has been officially illegal in the United States since the late 1930s; that is, except for the U.S. Census Bureau. The bureau is embarking on a massive, well-funded plan to use schoolchildren in grades k-12 across the country to serve as salespersons for the 2010 census.
In recent decades, the census has become more than the counting of people the Constitution envisioned. It has morphed into a multibillion-dollar project, backed by thousands of bureaucrats and designed to gather for Uncle Sam as much information on as many people as possible.
In one respect, this phenomenon is a not-unexpected outgrowth of the natural tendency of government to increase and retain power. As the amount of taxpayer dollars flowing into and out of the federal government has expanded exponentially in recent years, so also has the carrot-and-stick the feds employ to pressure states and local communities to do its bidding. Thus, the census is now marketed to states, counties, cities,