ID Cards: If We Keep Inventing New Excuses One Will Eventually Work

Unperturbed with concerns and revolts over ID cards in his last term of Government, Tony Blair is back for another try. This time it’s not terrorism, it’s not illegal immigrants, it’s not access to services, it’s ID theft. Hurrah! ID cards to the rescue again!

Of course, as ever, we’re not told exactly how the ID cards will solve this problem. The fact that ID cards only prevent ID theft in person at point of contact, and actually provide a handy, one-key-fits-all source of ID in an easily theftable format, are things that are glossed quickly over. No, instead we’re supposed to believe that criminals are shaking in their boots at the prospect of these cards and don’t have the slightest idea where to begin forging them. Nope, criminals throughout history have been stumped by identity documents of all kinds and never use them.

And we’re being fed a truly bollocksy, we-made-this-one-up - it-sounds-scary - and-if-we-keep-repeating-it-people-will-believe-it figure of an annual cost of £1.3 billion from ID theft. Never mind this figure is conjured up from many different kinds of fraud, a large percentage of which is done remotely through processing of paperwork and electronic communications and any ID card would not make the slightest difference to.

So Tony, please, for once, quit spinning lies and come clean about this scheme. ID cards have only one guaranteed effect; control and surveillance of law-abiding citizens. They will provide zero protection from terrorism, fraud, illegal immigration and criminals in general. Stop pretending otherwise. And once in place any ID system makes the abuse of rights and privacy sooo much easier.

What’s your next spin? What other hot-topic are you going to try to pin on this donkey? ID cards; the solution to anti-social neighbours? ID Cards; ensuring healthy school dinners?

I hear Identity Cards will protect us from cancer AND rocket-powered monkeys. Why do you hate the UK? :wink:

Mmm, cancer-powered rocket cards.

Hey, it worked when I was 16 and wanted to get a blowjob.

How much more difficult could an ID card be?

Can anyone name one single large public IT project in the UK that has been anything but an unmitigated shambles?

Yeah, but what works with your mother and what works with a large impersonal government aren’t necessarily the same thing.

At least you get an excuse to shoot down in the UK.

Here in the states, they just tack national ID legislation on to bills authorizing much more important things, like money for the troops.

I just heard about this in the States, and I’m PO’d. Though I think there is a major judicial hurdle to it as well. What is it with governments? Why do they keep doing this? In the long run, it won’t even help them, either.

I know, but the Ministry of BJs just makes me wait in line.

My mother just bores me to tears with stories about how, in HER day, the national ID cards were made out of wood and you had to walk to the king’s palace yourself to get them, uphill, in the snow, over broken glass, both ways.

I’m truly impressed by the way Blair has been “listening to the electorate” ever since the election. Oh yes. We can tell that he is serious about taking our views and our concerns to heart. What a kind and responsible leader he is!
This post has been officially deemed “On-Message” by New Labour. (I wonder, if I post nine more like it, can I send off for an OBE or something?)

We were too poor to afford ID cards when I was growing up. We had nothing but rotten twigs inscribed with our personal information, and glad enough to get them we were, too!


Now, now. He said he’d listen to the electorate. He didn’t say he’d let them influence government policy. Besides he were to listen to us, he’d be left with little choice but to go fuck himself, which would be a less than edifying spectacle.

I dunno. I’d tune into BBC1 to watch that, which is more than I’d do for a Party Election Broadcast …

(and bang go my chances of that OBE. Oh, well, easy come, easy go.)

Tony Blair. Listening… … then saying; no, you’re wrong, we’re doing it anyway.

Naturally the IT project will be a shambles. One of the first things any project needs to know is its purpose. The next is how it will achieve its purpose. If it doesn’t know these it’s bound to go off the rails. As we’ve already seen, the ID cards is a project lost for a reason, doesn’t know what it’s supposed to achieve, how it will achieve it, won’t know when or if it has achieved it, and has no idea who is supposed to decide it’s achieved it or not. Other than Tony, perhaps, who changes his story every month.

Either that or the purpose is quite definite, it’s just that the Government isn’t keen on sharing that particular side of the story with the public. That story is once there is a compulsory label affixed to each citizen it makes the Government’s job far easier in yanking them by it, or even cutting it off completely. And if you don’t have a label, well, you’re not anybody.

And let’s not forget, this isn’t what you would call the cheap option. £93 is the last figure I heard bandied about, before the inevitable IT cock-up and massive cost-escalation has been taken into account. Still, if it stops an Al-Qaida operative smuggling himself into the country, taking my pasty-faced Scottish identity and having keyhole surgery on a ruptured ligament while claiming benefits, it’ll be well worth it. Honestly, you couldn’t make it up!

This is worth checking out (especially if you’re a Gilbert & Sullivan fan)

You had rotten twigs?

We had to carve our Social Insurance Numbers on our foreheads with broken glass!

And we were happy.

Hah - you had personal information?

We had one name - and you got to use it once a week.

And we were happy.


Well, have you seen any roccket powered monkeys around an ID card?
Thought not.