Thursday, September 8, 2011

Nerd Alert! - or, Save the U.S. Statistical Abstract

I just found out via Invictus' post at Barry Ritholtz' blog that the U.S. government will be defunding the Census Bureau's 133-year old Statistical Abstract. This is not only the first time that I've heard the news (here's the closest thing I could find to an official announcement, which was posted at the U.S. Government Printing Office site back in March 2011), this is the first time I've even heard of the Statistical Abstract!

If you follow the link to the Invictus post up above you can find ways to email U.S. Census Bureau director Robert Groves to ask that the Abstract be saved from the chopping block. Invictus also pointed out that some quick emails to your local congresspeople might be called for as well. In my brief trips across the internet there seems to be a consensus that the Abstract will be discontinued since the information is readily available at other online sites. That may be true, but I've never had much luck finding information like "Educational Attainment by Race, Hispanic Origin, and Sex" or "Total Electric Power Industry - Generation, Sales, Revenue, and Customers" without a lot of online hunting and pecking.

I've often remarked to my husband that someone needs to publish a book called "Everything You Should Know by Now" to eliminate all of these after-the-fact tidbits I keep coming across 10 years too late. I could have saved myself a lot of grief over these last few years if I'd had the Statistical Abstract bookmarked.

Now. if only I could come across some sort of already-compiled FRED Graph Statistical Abstracts at the St. Louis Federal Reserve!

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