DHS Secretary Chertoff on REAL ID's "COUNTLESS OTHER" USES.


Monday, April 16, 2007

Minnesota joins states bucking plan for a national ID--PLUS

By Steve Alexander, Star Tribune reports :
Maine and Idaho already have passed laws opposing participation, and Minnesota is among 25 states that have legislation in the works, according to the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators, based in Arlington, Va. In Missouri, Republican state Rep. James Guest has started a coalition of state legislators in 34 states who oppose the federal plan.

Many states are resisting because REAL ID is an unfunded mandate. I wish more people were resisting because REAL ID is wrong in principle. But such thinking seems rare these days.

Doris Meissner and James Ziglar, New York Times, editorialize that:
After more than 20 years of failed efforts, Congress must not bake half a loaf. Secure biometric Social Security cards are an essential ingredient in any comprehensive immigration reform.
All I can say to Doris and James is that one bad idea (Social Security) deserves another.

Brent Martin, MissouriNet, reports:
Missouri would refuse to participate in the federal government's REAL ID Act under a bill winning overwhelming approval in the House. But a counter-argument has been made as a Senate committee considers the measure.

Rep. Jim Guest (R-King City) sponsors HCR 20 now in the Senate. He sees REAL ID as an invasion of privacy, "We're suppose to be a government of the people, by the people and for the people, not a government to be feared."

His bill passed the House on a vote of 146-to-4.

Jim Harper, Detroit News, says: REAL ID Act Hurts Michigan
If you think going to the Secretary of State's office is a pain now, wait until the REAL ID Act takes effect in May of next year. If Michigan complies, it will be required to overhaul its drivers' licenses to meet strict federal guidelines, creating a de facto national ID card.

Data on every American driver would be entered into a national database. Understandably, many people have privacy concerns about REAL ID. But this is just one reason for Michigan to join the three other states that have already refused to comply with the act.

Here's a related issue: Britain steps closer toward a biometric ID card--
Toward the end of 2009, the United Kingdom hopes to have a national identity card scheme up and running for citizens and residents. The personal information of millions of people will be included in a computer database, along with biometric details such as fingerprints and facial characteristics.


jon said...

I wish more people were resisting because REAL ID is wrong in principle. But such thinking seems rare these days.

I agree on both counts -- Michael Hampton made some good point about this in Washington state pretends to reject REAL ID on Homeland Stupidity.

Still, I think that we've got an opportunity here to start with the cost-based opposition and increase awareness about all the other reasons REAL ID is wrong. We can't stop with the state-by-state battle; we need to reinforce the people in Congress working towards repeal -- and put this debate on the national agenda.


Anonymous said...

What were once inalienable* rights will now require government permission.

* Board a plane, train, or bus (right to liberty/travel)
* Enter any federal building (right to appeal to a court)
* Open a bank account (right to contract)
* Get a job (right to contract)

Everyone nods their head when they hear that information is power. Sadly enough most people delude themselves in thinking that allowing the government to demand our most personal information is a not a huge transfer of power. With such a transfer of power we are becoming slaves. In the end as in all forms of slavery it will always be enforced with a gun.

Visit and support www.NO2REALID.ORG.

*a right that cannot be transfered or abridged without reducing the humanity of the victim

Anonymous said...

According to the DHS website, REAL ID data would NOT be entered into a national database, it would go into stte databases which would be confidential (no "fishing" for information, state-to-state). While it's probably true that the Feds could get a hold of information held by the State, this has always been true. The information being collected is benign (hey, look at the personal information collected on the census) and I really don't see why there is such a backlash unless you have something to hide. The government needs to start making steps forward with knowing who the hell is actually in our borders. How else can we do it without requiring that people give verifiable information when getting an ID?

John R. said...

Anonymous #2,

When you have 50 state databases networked for ease in communication between them--and this is done at the demand of the federal government--you indeed have a national database.

If REAL ID makes no real difference, then why are we doing it? We are doing it because it is indeed an increase in the kind and amount of information (possibly future biometrics), and an increase in the government's ability to manipulate and regulate the individual in real time--adding more and more requirements that demand "identification."

Maybe we ought to do something to ease the intrusion of the census, while we're at it. You see, I don't believe we have to fall into the "It’s-Already-Bad-So-Let's-Make-It-Worse" fallacy.

The question is not whether I have something to hide. The question is, "Do you want to live in a country where the state continues to gather massive power over the individual?"

Do you like the 4th Amendment?

Do you appreciate freedom?

Have you read history? (It's all we have to go on...)

Do you believe that the uses of a national id card will remain "minimal"?

Do you believe everything the bureaucrats at DHS write?

Thanks for stopping by and for the exchange of ideas.