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United States
I’ll do it, but only if you’ll help

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Having to register where you live, or having an ID number, are not at all the same thing as having an ID card. Make no mistake, they WILL become compulsory to carry at all times - if you believe the government's statements to the contrary you were obviously born yesterday - see their assurances about no tuition fees etc. - for 3 reasons, (meaning that in effect one requires permission from the State to leave one's house): 1. This invariably happens in countries that introduce ID cards (most recently The Netherlands, where I lived for many years.)2. Within what limited logic there is for ID cards as an anti-crime and particularly an anti-immigration tool, they cannot work unless they are carried at all times. 3. A majority of the public are in favour of it being compulsory to carry them, and New Labour was never reluctant to do what opinion polls tell it, save only when the US tells it to do something else. Sadly, ID stands subconsciously for Immigrant Detection in the minds of the majority, and that is why, the majority being suspicious of foreigners in all countries, ID cards are popular, with only their cost telling against them in these xenophobic minds. Of course as we know, while there may be a majority in favour, for the pros it is not a big deal, while us antis feel passionately. It is for this very reason that Blunkett made the penalties civil - he knew we would fill the jails to bursting if refusal to cooperate were a criminal offence. Instead, they will seize your bank account or goods until they've got their £2500 fine, and there's nothing you can do about it. In fact, you would actually suffer a lesser penalty for committing a proper crime as a protest against ID cards than for refusing to register for an ID card. To put off the evil day as long as possible, you could try getting a new passport even if the old one has not run out (happily I've just renewed mine anyway) and not bothering to get a new driving licence when you move - a minor illegality, I've only been asked to produce mine once in this country in the 25 years since I passed my test. Sadly, if your job requires you to travel or drive (mine does both), refusing to cooperate with the ID scheme will make you unemployed unless you do such things - £10 is neither here nor there in comparison. .
Philip Nice, 15 years ago.

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