Ever since the Conservatives proposed the abolition of the intrusive long form, the media has risen in rebellion, calling the government everything from barbaric to incompetent with a disproportionate fury that is hard to fathom. Most of us have an opinion as to whether it's a good idea to abolish it or not, but not many have actually seen the long form. If you'd like to, here's a copy of the 2006 long form.pdf
Although the media has been massively critical of the decision to cancel the form, according to recent opinion polls, the country is just about evenly split on the issue, this in spite of the massive media campaign to support the long form. One wonders what the numbers would look like if reporting was a bit more balanced.
The very best article that I've seen on the issue doesn't even come from Canada, it's a must-read piece written in the prestigious ECONOMIST magazine entitled "Leviathan's spyglass," a refreshing analysis of the census that every defender should read.
Back to the numbers, opinion in Quebec differs sharply from that of Canada, with 62% agreeing that abolishing the poll is a good idea. Reference
You'd never know it from the Francophone media, who have all lined up on the side of keeping the long form alive. The Federation of Francophone and Acadian Communities of Canada is even launching a court challenge. LINK
One has to wonder why this Herculean effort is being put forth.
I've already written a piece about the last census wherein an underground Internet campaign was launched to get francophones to answer certain questions on the form dishonestly in order to make it appear that there were more unilingual francophone speakers in Canada than there actually are.
Read my article- Is Census Brouhaha Based on Language?
I'm not sure how successful that campaign was, but it's clear that with all the publicity surrounding the story about this so-called manipulation, should the long form be sent out again, it's a certainty that it would be subject to an even larger campaign of deception.
Interestingly, the fraud in 2006 and the potential for an even bigger fraud in 2010 has hardly entered the national discussion, but it is most certainly, the elephant in the room.
Perhaps the Conservatives considered this implication, but are loathe to discuss it publicly.
While the 2010 census form will no doubt be different from its predecessor, here are the questions from the 2006 long form that were the subject of manipulation. By answering FRENCH ONLY to all questions, (regardless of the truth) it is believed that the number of unilingual francophone Canadians was exaggerated;