Author Topic: A cat in court?  (Read 1816 times)

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Elfmama

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Re: A cat in court?
« Reply #15 on: January 22, 2011, 09:59:33 AM »

They only ask the "long form" to a small subset of people, though - most people just got the basic questions about demographic data (names, ages, race, ethnic origin, etc.)

A lot of the obscure questions deal with data collection for various government agencies.  Indoor plumbing, for example - if they have that information, they can see whether there's a correlation between indoor plumbing and outbreaks of disease, or between indoor plumbing and crime rates.  Then if they do find a correlation, they can look at other places which have lower rates of indoor plumbing as potential sites that might need an additional health clinic or police department.
In the past, yes.  But given that overall, only 0.6% of American homes don't have indoor plumbing (and Indian Reservations and Alaska account for a large percentage of that), the question of indoor plumbing would seem to be a moot point.  If there is a nasty flu outbreak in Arkansas (0.8%) and not one in Maine (0.9%), does the percentage difference have anything to do with it?

And if the lady listed the cat as a human on the census, I do indeed wonder if she's been claiming him as a dependent on her taxes.  I see a visit from the IRS in her future.
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LadyClaire

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Re: A cat in court?
« Reply #16 on: January 22, 2011, 08:00:20 PM »
I've seen news stories about pets getting credit card offers, so I can believe it.

DangerMouth

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Re: A cat in court?
« Reply #17 on: January 22, 2011, 08:04:37 PM »
There was no 'long form' questionaire in 2010.

Probably because there were enough households like mine who refused to answer the incredibly intrusive one from 2000.

Erich L-ster

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Re: A cat in court?
« Reply #18 on: January 22, 2011, 08:43:26 PM »
was the cat 18 years old? i didn't think minors could serve on a jury.

Carnation

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Re: A cat in court?
« Reply #19 on: January 22, 2011, 10:15:46 PM »
Hmm.  This makes me think of a story a friend of mine tells about her former accountant.

He came to their appointment shaking like a leaf.  When she asked him what was wrong he told her he had just come from another client's appointment where he learned that "George", who had been listed as a dependent on that client's tax forms for the previous ten years, was a dog.  He was afraid of the possibility that this client could be audited and he would be in trouble with her.

Since babies are given SSN's at birth this can't happen anymore.

My next door neighbor did just that in the 70's.  His dog's name was Sandy and he would list her as a dependent.

He was a jerk and most likely, still is. :P

Venus193

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Re: A cat in court?
« Reply #20 on: January 22, 2011, 10:25:37 PM »
I once knew a bookstore owner in Florida who created an e-mail address for her cat.  He received a lot of p0rn spam.

Elfmama

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Re: A cat in court?
« Reply #21 on: January 23, 2011, 08:54:25 AM »
Those people who claim their pets as dependents -- what do they do about the requirement that said dependents must have a Social Security Number? Just pull one out of thin air?
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Sirius

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Re: A cat in court?
« Reply #22 on: January 23, 2011, 01:28:57 PM »
I've got a cat named Daisy and one named Minnie.  Should I expect jury duty summonses for them?


Slartibartfast

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Re: A cat in court?
« Reply #23 on: January 23, 2011, 08:13:06 PM »
Those people who claim their pets as dependents -- what do they do about the requirement that said dependents must have a Social Security Number? Just pull one out of thin air?

That requirement wasn't in effect until the 80's, so this used to be much worse before then.  I suspect people may still make up numbers, though, or use someone else's number, or use a dead relative's number . . . if they don't get audited, it's entirely possible they won't be found out for a while!

kareng57

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Re: A cat in court?
« Reply #24 on: January 23, 2011, 08:26:54 PM »
I've seen news stories about pets getting credit card offers, so I can believe it.

DS #1 got a pre-approved credit-card application when he was 11.

What else to do? - he filled it out and sent it in (and we knew about it, we were kind of curious to see what would happen).  He was very honest; his annual income was around $150 (his allowance) and he listed his occupation as "child labourer".  Also, his printing was definitely typical of an 11 year old boy.

About 10 days later he got a phone call.  "Mr. xxxx, we have your application and are in the middle of processing it and are all set to approve it.  We just need to know - you seem to have made an error on your birth date".  The operator repeated it, and he acknowledged that it was correct.  "But that would mean that you're only 11!"  "That's right."  "Uh - could I speak to your mom or dad?"

I wasn't home at the time (I wish that I had been) but Dh was and he verified that yes, they had indeed sent a card application to an 11 year old.  Of course it went no further than that, and the caller said that she would definitely bring this "error" to her supervisor's attention.

Re the OP - IMO these people were definitely to blame when they listed the cat on the census.  Even if they were doing it jokingly rather than trying to claim the cat as a dependent, they were really the cause of the problem, rather than bureaucrats.