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Again, you are citing real problems in society and using this to justify your support for ID cards... but without establishing how you think they will help. Even leaving aside for a moment the practical issue of whether a database with 60 million entries would be searchable by police as a matter of routine (and there is no way with current technology that it could be, as the system would be utterly overloaded), you are forgetting that the criminals you speak of would *know* that their fingerprints were in the register. If you are suggesting that most criminals (drug addicts or otherwise) would be too desperate or stupid to exercise even the small amount of foresight required to put on a pair of gloves, while knowing full well that their fingerprints were accessible to police, then I feel you are likely to be sorely mistaken. Moreover, those few who really *are* desperate or mindless enough to lack that foresight are hardly likely to think "ah no, I'd best not carry out this violent attack, because the police have my fingerprints."
This has nothing to do with "Blair bashing", it is simple common sense. ID cards cannot help deal with the problems you cite, whereas other things (such as using the money to boost funding for the police, instead) can. It doesn't matter how many "shopping centre managers" you find who believe that ID cards are the answer, because I'm afraid they're not.Nic Shakeshaft, 14 years ago.