UK Liberty

The ID card scheme debate

Posted in database state, ID Cards, surveillance society by ukliberty on August 26, 2008

A comment I left elsewhere:

The debate is not just about the introduction of an ID card and what is on it, but also the National Identity Register, the database(s) behind the card, what will be stored on that, who will have access to it, and the extra costs and risks associated with the introduction of that particular scheme.

It is also about the alleged problems we are trying to solve, and whether or not they are best solved by this scheme or by some alternative(s), whether it’s worth doing anything about that alleged problem at all, or indeed whether there is in fact a problem.

Furthermore, one should also consider the proposal [indeed, any proposal] not only on its own but also in the context of the other means of population surveillance and control, and other civil liberties infringing measures, that have been or are seriously proposed to be introduced, where we are going with all this, and where we want to end up.

It seems to me that the more the UK public learns about the Government’s scheme, and its associated costs and risks, the more people are less inclined to support it. They are asking questions that Mr Briggs is not. Indeed, far from being “insular and ignorant”, they are educating themselves about the disadvantages as well as the supposed benefits, and concluding that it might well not be worth it.

In not touching on any of these issues at all, Mr Briggs’s article fails to do the subject any justice whatsoever. It would be kind to call his article ‘unpersuasive’.

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