Up until a few months ago, the only person I knew that supported the introduction of identity cards, was my wife. After a few heated debates, questions, answers and what-if’s, she eventually conceded that it wasn’t such a great idea. We have a very democratic process in our house, something like the system we used to have in the UK. Now, she cannot be brow-beaten, trust me I know, but she had listened to what the likes of Jacqui Smith has said, believed the assurances and was coming at it primarily from an immigration control perspective.
However, news that everyone Jacqui Smith comes into contact with supports ID cards has come as a bit of a shock, because as we all know, this government would never seek to mislead, or heaven forbid, lie to the electorate. Therefore, I can only assume that someone filters those that Jacqui Smith meets, or she doesn’t get out much. As with most things it is probably a bit of both, because as I have already stated, I can’t imagine anyone in such a senior position, with huge responsibilities would seek to mislead.
The bottom line is ID cards are being imposed on some sections of the community, such as airside airport workers and students, if there were so many supporters, then we must question why this policy should be mandatory? Looks like a stealth move to me. ID cards will be the primary method for which the government will spy on its own citizens, because not only will they include biometrics, they will include a number, that links all of the various government databases together. Which means, with an identity card, far from using it simply to confirm who we are, there will be 700 agencies that have access to the data, they will be able to find out; what we do, where we have been, who we have met, who we call, who we text, what we write in our emails, which websites we visit, what car we drive who we insure with, who our doctor is, what our medical history is, our credit rating, where we travel, how we travel, if we are married, how many children we have, where we went to school…I could go on, but I won’t, you get the picture.
So, why do they need all this information? Will knowing who I talked to, where I went last Saturday, what I bought at the supermarket and where I intend to go on holiday, help defeat terrorism or reduce crime? I don’t think so. But, if someone could access this amount of information, could it be useful to them? For example, someone stealing my identity, someone wishing to commit fraud, an insurance company wanting to assess my risk of dying of cancer or a government official wanting to know my political persuasion.
When a crime is committed, the oft repeated mantra is to “follow the money”. In the case of ID cards, we should all be asking who gains, who benefits? I can see no personal gain whatsoever in my allowing anyone this amount of information on me. I am fed up with the people that keep harping on about “if you have nothing to hide, then you have nothing to fear?” This is complete and utter rubbish. Of course I have nothing to hide, that is why I prepared to stand up and be counted, make my views known to anyone that cares to read this blog. But remember, this is my choice, it is not mandated. I choose to share my views, I have no wish for the goverment, or any of its 700 agencies to be able or permitted to intrude in my private life.