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National ID May Have Killed Immigration Bill

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the choose-your-battles-carefully dept.

Privacy 481 reports that the immigration reform bill bouncing around in the Senate for the last few weeks has finally been defeated. The site speculates that, perhaps, one of the reasons it was finally defeated was a measure intended to expand the use of Real ID cards. If passed, the bill would have effectively turned the Real ID system into a National ID card. "The American Civil Liberties Union, another longtime foe of Real ID, said the Real ID requirements were a 'poison pill that derailed this bill, and any future legislation should be written knowing the American people won't swallow it.' Another section of the immigration bill would have given $1.5 billion to state officials to pay for Real ID compliance. Even if the immigration bill is goes nowhere, however, the Real ID Act is still in effect. It says, starting on May 11, 2008, Americans will need a federally-approved ID card to travel on an airplane, open a bank account, collect Social Security payments or take advantage of nearly any government service." As we've discussed before, several states have rebelled against the implementation of Real ID.

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papers please (4, Insightful)

tempestdata (457317) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682509)

Why does that ring a bell?

Re:papers please (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682723)

america, land of the not so free.

Re:papers please (0, Redundant)

cyberkahn (398201) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683361)

I hope I don't offend you, but you misspelled. It's Amerika now. Spelled with a "K"

How Cliché (5, Insightful)

DumbSwede (521261) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683303)

A majority of American's are against illegal immigration. A majority of American's are against profiling. So what alternative do you propose to identify legitimate citizens from illegal aliens? Your papers analogies is actually rather weak as a national ID only identifies you are a legal US Citizen. Whereas the point of "papers" in the past was to show where citizens had permission to move to and from and were checked frequently at checkpoints. The police would only be able to ask for it when there is clear evidence of crime. It wouldn't be required to be on your person, you just would for convenience like your driver's license to confirm your identity when needed.

My wife is from China, and while they don't have papers they have to carry around with them, they are not free to just pick up an live wherever they wish. I really doubt this will come to pass even with a National ID.

People always trot out these objections based on knee jerk emotional reactions to abuses in the past. The proposed boarder along our Mexican border gets similar jeers although the reason for its need is exactly the opposite of the reason for the Berlin Wall.

I for one would concentrate on protecting our Freedom of Speech rights (for which you are entitled to your opinion in this) and challenge to you suggest a feasible alternative that safeguards our borders, cuts down on illegal immigration, and possible terrorist activity. I don't live my life in fear of terrorism, but as the husband of Chinese national who has played by the rules and lived apart from my wife for TWO YEARS, I really do chafe at proposals to give illegals a faster easier way in than for those of us playing by the rules.

Maybe without a National ID we will never have another major successful terrorist attack, but I guarantee we will have such an ID in the wake of one.

You have got to be kidding... (5, Insightful)

Otter (3800) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682517)

1) The issue that killed the bill was amnesty, not Real ID. I don't believe I've seen a single story outside of here even mention the Real ID issue, and anyone who thinks that was the dealbreaker is either dishonest or delusional.

2) Aside from point 1), this makes no sense. The immigration bill collapsed, the Real ID is going through and that somehow proves that Real ID is politically untenable?!?

Re:You have got to be kidding... (0)

Zeinfeld (263942) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682769)

1) The issue that killed the bill was amnesty, not Real ID. I don't believe I've seen a single story outside of here even mention the Real ID issue, and anyone who thinks that was the dealbreaker is either dishonest or delusional.

Nobody wanted the bill. The folk who favor more immigration and amnesty know they can almost certainly do better under the next Congress. The folk who want to build walls to keep immigrants out don't want to do that if the cost is an anmesty.

The only point where RealID comes in here is that it seemed a good idea to tie any proposals to change RealID to a ship that was already sinking.

2) Aside from point 1), this makes no sense. The immigration bill collapsed, the Real ID is going through and that somehow proves that Real ID is politically untenable?!?

Well the deadline is going ahead but what the deadline means is likely not a lot. nobody is going to tell the inhabitants on New Hampshire that they can't get on a plane using their driving license. It is simply not a credible threat.

And Congress isn't going to do anything to impose a more realistic threat either. RealID only passed Congress because it was attached to the Katrina relief bill. The Democrats are not going to be as accomodating to Sensenbrener.

So whatever happens in the next 12 months or so is going to be proclaimed to 'be' RealID even if nothing at all happens.

Re:You have got to be kidding... (1)

Khaed (544779) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683227)

The folk who want to build walls to keep immigrants out don't want to do that if the cost is an anmesty.

Except I opposed this bill, and I don't want to keep immigrants out. I just want them to come here legally. It's not keeping just "immigrants" out. It's "illegal" immigrants.

Is amnesty so bad? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682793)

You know, I've heard all the rhetoric -- you've heard it, too -- about how this is amnesty. Amnesty means that you've got to pay a price for having been here illegally, and this bill does that. But it also recognizes it's in our nation's interest to bring people out of the shadows; that there's got to be a way forward that recognizes there is a penalty for being here illegally -- on the other hand, that recognizes that each person has got worth and dignity.
-- George W. Bush, June 26, 2007 []

Unfair (3, Insightful)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683071)

I get what he is saying there, no-one is saying the people here illegally are not real people who are worth something.

But the very real people, trying to legally immigrate, are they not worth something too? Why should other people get ahead of them just because they wandered over?

If someone jumps ahead of you in line, do you say "well good for them for coming out of the shadows" or do you steam because it's not fair? No life is not fair, but then why make it even more unfair than it is already for people that are trying to follow rules.

Not to mention, if you provide amnesty for millions of people, why on earth would not millions more come illegally, expecting the same thing? You are opening the floodgates to a lot more illegal immigration. You help a group now and simply shift the same problem to the future. If you are going to do that, just do away with immigration laws or border control or any pretense you want to have the slightest idea or control over who is immigrating.

Re:Unfair (1)

Otter (3800) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683241)

I think the reality is that every 10-15 years the number of illegals gets out of hand, and some legislation gets passed that clears the decks but also "ensures that now we get serious about controlling our borders!" It's inevitable, and I don't get worked up about it either way. If the bill had passed, we'd be having exactly the same discussion in 2022.

But whether amnesty is good or bad is irrelevant to the original question.

Re:Is amnesty so bad? (5, Insightful)

DrMrLordX (559371) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683327)

Yes, amnesty is so bad.

The problem is that illegal immigrants (or undocumented workers, however you want to label them) only last as long as they do here to serve the whim of corporations that frequently use them as underpaid employees that will not unionize, will willingly work in hazardous work environments, and will only rarely leave their job voluntarily (for better pay, better work, etc). If you bring them out of the shadows, you bring to light all the abuses they have willingly suffered over the years to avoid even worse work conditions and pay in their home countries. Employers of newly-legalized immigrants will be forced to clean up their acts and raise pay for their formerly-undocumented workforce if they wish to continue employing said immigrants. Logically speaking, one should conclude that legalized immigrants will lose their jobs, probably to a new wave of illegals that will flood in as replacements.

In other words, if you give current undocumented workers the same rights, protections, and wages as natural-born Americans or legal immigrants, corporations will have no desire to hire them. For this reason, it is not rational to conclude that anyone currently "in the shadows" will step out and claim their place in American society. To do so would be to face layoffs. Anyone foolish enough to "go legal" would probably sooner become an American welfare case than move back to their home country. It's a lose-lose situation.

If we are so determined to make sure that employers grant fair pay and provide adequate workplace safety as the law demands, and furthermore pay wages as the free market frequently demands, it would be more wise for us to simply deport or otherwise disenfranchise the 12+ million undocumented workers we have now to force employers to hire American citizens and/or documented workers. Contrary to what corporate shills would have you believe, modern Americans will do just about any job you put in front of them provided that the pay is right. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, they can even harvest lettuce, tomatoes, and other veggies in the field.

The real question is whether or not significant wage increases for menial laborers in the US would hurt the economy more than our current labor situation in which millions of undocumented workers siphon off public funds in the form of local, state, and federal aid programs due to their pathetic wages. They also wire much of their liquid capital back to their families abroad, all but guaranteeing that they can not and will not serve as an economic stimulus in our country. Raising wages of American workers, on the other hand, would be good for our economy. This point is often made by proponents of minimum wage increases.

And, if you don't believe that there is an untapped reserve of American workers ready to step up and replace our undocumented worker buddies, you might want to reconsider that point. Current teen and young adult unemployment rates (ages 16-24) are staggering. African-American teens, at least according to a recent column by Bob Herbert, suffer an employment rate of 18% nationwide.

Of course, there is the real threat that many unskilled labor positions will vanish altogether due to automation sometime in the next 20-50 years, but we would be better off positioning ourselves today by not encouraging wave upon wave of unskilled, uneducated foreign workers to enter the country when they and their ilk will likely face widespread obsolescence down the road. Additionally, the widespread deportation of undocumented laborers and its associated increase in labor costs will likely spur development of automation technology in the agricultural, manufacturing, and service industries. An automated American economy combined with new, cheap energy sources (LENR anyone?) could potentially provide goods and services at a price far lower than foreign economies with scads of cheap, uneducated workers subjected to deep poverty-level wages, poor work conditions, and lax environmental standards. Such an economic development would mark the beginning of a resurgence of American industrial might and morality as we set a positive standard for other industrialized and developing nations to follow (never mind that it would lead to the unemployment of millions of foreign workers earning pathetic wages in their current jobs).

Taken from a different angle, one can rationally conclude that the continued presence of undocumented workers in the United States of America is preventing our country from developing technologically, economically, and societally. We should be entering a golden age of automated labor which we will never achieve so long as we continue to abuse our immigrant underclass in the pursuit of a higher GDP. It is time to send our undocumented friends back home (or passively force them to leave by ruining their job prospects and pulling government benefits) and get down to the business of good, honest work.

Re:You have got to be kidding... (1, Troll)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683077)

I think amnesty is a misused word here, because the penalties for being here illegally don't go away. Amnesty is total forgiving of debt / crime, but the immigration bill has a very steep fine that I think is impossible to pay on a typical illegal immigrant's wages. In short, I really don't think this illegal immigration bill changes anything other than thicken the law books, so I really don't understand why there's a tug of war on this, except to be a distraction from actually doing anything useful.

It's kind of a shame that certain political groups try to derail it by misusing loaded words. I know this is typical for politics, but it sounds pretty retarted.

And as stated before ... (5, Insightful)

khasim (1285) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682527)

the 9/11 terrorists had legitimate ID's.

This does nothing to stop terrorists or terrorism.

Yes, but... (1)

one_in_a_milli0n (1085449) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682637)

...had it happened today, we would had their fingerprints!

Re:Yes, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682707)

And that would accomplish what exact?

Re:Yes, but... (1) (1108067) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682815)

Identifying the bodies? There would have been less question of whether they were dead or not.

All this is going to do is push people to offshore internet banking, like everything else .. and that way, they won't have Uncle Sam looking at whether they're gambling online.

Re:Yes, but... (1)

seaturnip (1068078) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682907)

Yes, in case they might have survived the massive plain crash explosion.

Re:Yes, but... (1)

eln (21727) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682861)

Nothing. What we should do is require that everyone be required to be splashed with holy water or made to stand in front of a mirror before they can board a plane. After all, terrorists are burned by holy water, and don't show a reflection. This way, we could easily identify them before they can do any harm.

Or maybe I'm thinking about vampires. I get those mixed up sometimes. Oh well, at the very least we can cover airplanes in green Kryptonite, I'm pretty sure that stuff will stop terrorists.

Small correction... (1)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683009)


Re:Yes, but... (1)

jacks0n (112153) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683313)

With their fingerprints, we would be able to detect sarcasm remotely, over the internets.

Re:And as stated before ... (2, Interesting)

Aqua OS X (458522) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682961)

Bah. As a guy who develops federal security solutions I can say this much, you have a hell of a lot more options if you undertake aggressive measures to know the names and backgrounds of people who are within a particular perimeter.

That said, I'm not trying to advocate Real ID. I'm not a fan of the concept, I'd rather see more relaxed national security measures combined with a policy keeping your d*cks out of international hornets nests.

Yet, just because the old system was vulnerable doesn't mean an overly authoritarian replacement wouldn't resolve those vulnerabilities, albeit at the cost of civil liberties.

Yep (1)

Cracked Pottery (947450) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683163)

The more "secure" ID are, the more convincing counterfeits become.

NOT true (5, Insightful)

mozkill (58658) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682541)

The immigration bill failed because of the number of citizens who made noise against the bill. My guess is that more than a few senators were scared into voting differently than they otherwise would have. For now, the people get their way.

Re:NOT true (2, Interesting)

Kreigaffe (765218) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682587)

Of course, you're right, but officially that's not what happened.

Officially, they had to vote against the bill because of Real ID.. not because americans don't want to essentially annex as much of the mexican population as can make their way across the border.

don't want to upset the hispanic population. they're the fastest growing minority!

Re:NOT true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682689)

"don't want to upset the hispanic population. they're the fastest growing minority!"

you mean majority

Re:NOT true (5, Insightful)

Original Replica (908688) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682691)

Which again raises the question, of why there is more than one issue per bill. It's easy to see how RealID and immigration would be connected, but there is no honest reason to attach the two together. That can be said for most things attached to most bills as they make the rounds through the hallowed halls of Congress. How can we as mere voters, get Congress to pass a law allowing only one line item per bill?

Re:NOT true (1)

Adambomb (118938) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683087)

Considering how long these processes take, do you REALLY want to add administrative overhead to it?

Tough call personally, as I sure do not know any metrics on redundancies due to failed bills that had unrelated items tacked into them nor for how much overhead each new process would create. Logically it seems to be a situation where you dont want to have the encapsulating bureaucratic crap before and after the vote process for each and every possible line item, but government is rarely logical so I could easily be el wrongo.

Re:NOT true (1)

Chosen Reject (842143) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683309)

I would love to see each bill only include relevant stuff in it. No more riders. First, there wouldn't be as much pork barrel crap anymore. Second, congress critters could no longer use the "My opponent voted against a bill to save the kittens" even though that bill had all sorts of other crap that the opponent opposed. And thirdly, it would slow congress down. They make entirely too many laws as it is. But at the same time it might speed them up since they won't have to argue about completely irrelevant parts of a bill to get it passed.

Re:NOT true (1)

DoofusOfDeath (636671) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683315)

Putting unrelated items into a single bill is a way to express deal-making within the Congress.

For example...

if congress-critter Jack is pro-A, mildly-anti-B, anti-C
if congress-critter Jill is mildly-anti-A, pro-B, pro-C

Then the bill enacting {A, B} is a valid compromise for them.

Suppose they expressed this negotiated compromise as two bills (bill #1 = A, bill #2 = B) rather than one. Then after the first bill was passed, whichever congress-critter got his way would then probably betray the other critter when it was time to vote on the second bill.

So in a certain sense the items appearing in a bill may be related to the congress-criters, because they're all part of one negotiated horse-trade.

Or... Hah hah hah!!! Just kidding. They're smuggled in there to kill the bill, or they're pork and they knew other congress-critters don't read the bills before voting.

I have such fscking mixed feeling about our "democracy".

Re:NOT true (1)

Vitriol+Angst (458300) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682757)


Finally a statement that makes sense.

Mod parent up.

Re:NOT true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682903)

The senate voted to remove the Real ID requirement from the bill. However this was not enough to save the legislation, it still failed. al+ID/2100-7348_3-6193735.html [] ed+immigration+bill/2100-7348_3-6193916.html []

BTW New Hampshire officially rejected Real ID yesterday, that makes six states... 20070627/NEWS0201/70627059 []

Re:NOT true (1)

fyngyrz (762201) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683097)

that makes six states...

Montana was one of the first. It also rejected the idea of Eminent domain as a legitimate power able to take a citizen's property for the purpose of tax revenue. [] Plus the state isn't in debt (they actually run a balanced budget.)

Sadly, they did fold like a bunch of zombies over speed limits when the feds threatened to pull highway funding.

Still, I'm kind of proud of them. They're doing a lot better than most states, and they show up the feds for the corporate teat-sucking tools they are.

Re:SOOOO NOT TRUE (2, Informative)

CryptoLogica (463378) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683287)

There was a lot to dislike about this bill regardless, but NONE of those reasons were why this bill didn't see the light of day... because NO ONE could see the bill in the light of day.

I watched the proceedings on CSPAN2 all yesterday morning, and the fact of the matter was that the bill was a chinese fire drill, and musical chairs being played all at the same time!!

Boxer, Reid and Kennedy were constantly touting and demanding the need for this that and the other thing and immediate passage, and the Republicans kept asking to see the new bill with the amendments incorporated in its entirety, and when they asked for a full vote for the bill to be read before the final vote, one of the three would object... SO BASICALLY THEY WANTED THE SENATE TO VOTE ON A BILL WITHOUT KNOWING WHAT WAS IN IT!! The bill was constantly being rewritten from day to day, know one other than the Democrats writing it, knew what was in it at any given time.

A clear lesson to be learned here is don't believe the soundbites you see in the news regardless of what or who is reporting it... when you see it live and for yourself, you get a wholly different perspective on what is happening in Washington, and it clearly sounds like some shell games are being played here... and apparently in the best interest of a select few, and DEFINITELY NOT what's good for the country!

Good Day,

Did I miss a day of school? (3, Insightful)

Elemenope (905108) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682555)

I'm sorry, but this bit of the synopsis confused me:

If passed, the bill would have effectively turned the Real ID system into a National ID card.

I was under the impression that the Real ID system all by itself was intended as a de facto national ID card. What am I missing?

Unfortunately... (4, Insightful)

ushering05401 (1086795) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682557)

I am so jaded about my countrymen that the following quote actually made me chuckle:

"The American Civil Liberties Union, another longtime foe of Real ID, said the Real ID requirements were a 'poison pill that derailed this bill, and any future legislation should be written knowing the American people won't swallow it."

The emphasis is mine.



Kill... Bill? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682585)

First "Kill Bill" reference! ...though probably not, seeing as this is slashdot.

ID for Gov't Services (5, Insightful)

goldspider (445116) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682599)

I'm not saying we need a national ID system, by any means.

What I don't understand is why people get so up in arms about requiring people to prove that they are eligible for the services for which they are applying.

Why do so many people advocate the abuse of services that could otherwise go to deserving, eligible American citizens?

Re:ID for Gov't Services (5, Interesting)

mi (197448) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682725)

What I don't understand is why people get so up in arms about requiring people to prove that they are eligible for the services for which they are applying.

Applicants do need to prove eligibility, there is no question about it. But the ID does not prove eligibility. It simply shows, who you are (authentication), rather than what you are entitled to (authorization).

And there are many other ways of proving, you are, who you say you are — requiring the Real ID is simply a way of twisting your arm into obtaining it.

The grave "Papers, please" fear-mongering is a bit overdone — plenty of reasonably free countries require citizens to carry IDs, and even America's States often require it for things like buying alcohol. But I dislike the Federal ID as well...

Re:ID for Gov't Services (5, Insightful)

fyngyrz (762201) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683213)

The grave "Papers, please" fear-mongering is a bit overdone

Is it? When you can be placed on a "no fly" list for any reason, can't get off it, and can't even see it?

Is it? When you can be placed on a list [] that forbids anyone to sell you a car, open a bank account, hire you, and more, without any sort of judicial oversight or other legal process?

Is it? When your personal choices about what you can do to yourself, and with consenting partners, are the subject of draconian laws designed to make you comply with the personal opinions of others? When the use of a sex toy can land you jail? When the display of a banner at a parade can get you sanctioned?

I don't think so. I think privacy has become the last bastion of freedom, and there isn't a lot of it left as is. RealID is even worse than the "papers please" people think it is, because the country's treatment of free, law-abiding citizens - not to mention its treatment of those who have paid their debt to society for previous transgressions - has descended nearly to the level of the mid 20th century Soviet Union, and it is getting worse.

Re:ID for Gov't Services (1)

goldspider (445116) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683323)

You do realize they can (and do!) already do all that without RealID, right?

Re:ID for Gov't Services (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682775)

because a lot of people do not like the idea of a single ID that has literally everything on it. basically it is paranoia [it isnt paranoia if there is a clear history of abuse] besides that there is the fact it is a bit more sifficult to prove your case if you lose the card/gets stolen in an identity theft case [bad enough as it is] for that matter I would rather have my rights/liberties fully intact than to give any of them up/weaken them just to feel safer and it is quite disturbing how many americans are willing/too lazy to fight against giving up their freedoms, that alone should bother you. -- ~~those who trade freedom for security get neither~~

Re:ID for Gov't Services (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682869)

people already have to prove their eligible.
want to drive on public streets, you need a driver's license.
want access to social security, you need a social security card.
want to register to vote? you need proof of residency.
logins/passwords/pins/secret words...etc etc etc.

realid is about linking all our information into a central database.
at our cost, with little or no benefit for us.
you don't want someone to have direct access to every core aspect of your records.
people can do a lot of evil things with such a database.
look at the hell marketing firms put us through and they only have our name and phone number!

thats purely from a individual's standpoint.
states don't like realid because the fed wants them to pay for it.
if the fed wants the states to implement realid they'll just tack on a multi million dollar funding bribe, or worse just threaten to take away existing funding.

Re:ID for Gov't Services (1)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682969)

What I don't understand is why people get so up in arms about requiring people to prove that they are eligible for the services for which they are applying.
Well, I strongly oppose Real ID, and I certainly don't oppose "requiring people to prove that they are eligible for the services for which they are applying."

You should absolutely, without question, have to prove eligibility before you receive any form of government service. However, I fail to see how getting on a bus or train or plane, operated by a private carrier, paid for out of my own pocket, is a "government service." I'm not asking for a government service there, and I don't think I should have to have some rentacop-gestapo-wannabe tell me that I need to show any fucking papers for it.

Apply for welfare? Definitely require ID (and not just ID, proof of eligibility, including citizenship and residence). Same for voting. And given that we've permanently wormed the government into employment (mandatory payroll deductions for taxes, Social Security, etc.), and you're essentially applying for an (albeit mandatory, probably unwanted) "service" when you take a job, I can see requiring it there, too.

But the offensive part of Real ID was the travel requirements; America has always been a nation without internal borders, and that was for reasons that are as true now as they were in the 18th century.

Re:ID for Gov't Services (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19683093)

Like I said, I don't think we need a national ID system like RealID.

Re:ID for Gov't Services (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19683183)

Why do so many people advocate the abuse of services that could otherwise go to deserving, eligible American citizens?

Interesting use of the word "deserving". Is some orphan in Africa fundamentally less "deserving" of assistance than an adult in the USA that has had all the privileges that living in the USA provides.

Some people make the mistake of thinking that social security is a national retirement program. It's not. It's just there to make sure that certain classes of people who are too old/disabled to work don't actually starve to death. This is obvious if you look at the amounts of money involved - a few hundred dollars a month. If you actually want a decent retirement then you need a million dollars saved up by age 65 (20 years of retirement at an annual income of $50K a year). That works out to saving about $30K a year or thousands of dollars a month.

For people who are actually being good citizens and saving the necessary amounts to pay for their own retirement, a few hundred dollars a month in contributions to social security is a drop in the bucket - totally irrelevant.

It amazes me that people who are poor enough to be bothered by having to pay social security deductions also make the claim that they are willing to pay for their own retirement. I guess not everyone is good at math.

Re:ID for Gov't Services (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19683215)

>Why do so many people advocate the abuse of services that could otherwise go to deserving, eligible American citizens?

Who is advocating that? Certainly not the ACLU or anyone against Real ID.

But, on the track of guilt by association, why do so many people advocate turning America into a police state? Papers, please!

What's wrong with a national ID card? (2, Interesting)

mmcuh (1088773) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682611)

I may be stupid, but I just don't get it.

Even if the immigration bill is goes nowhere, however, the Real ID Act is still in effect. It says that, starting on May 11, 2008, Americans will need a federally approved ID card to travel on an airplane, open a bank account, collect Social Security payments or take advantage of nearly any government service.

What could possibly be bad about that (except administrational costs)? I don't live in USA, but I assume that you would need some sort of ID for all these things today as well (surely you can't collect social security without providing some sort of proof of who you are and that you actually are entitled to it?). What's the difference between having a federally approved ID card instead of just a state approved?

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (2, Insightful)

LordPhantom (763327) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682675)

Perhaps we have more (not saying much) trust in our local governments than the Federal one?

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (5, Insightful)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682709)

The fact that you are required to show ID to travel by air so they can check their "no fly" list and deny you the right to travel to a protest rally is proof enough of the danger of any ID card. Next is biometrics so you don't even need an ID.. they're already doing it to international visitors. And, yeah, I guess eventually they'll relax those laws that say a cop can't stop you for no reason and they'll be free to put up checkpoints on the roads. Around then you'll have a "no drive" list.

But hey, don't listen to the warnings.. just keep letting your country turn into a totalitarian regime.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (1)

goldspider (445116) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682823)

"I guess eventually they'll relax those laws that say a cop can't stop you for no reason and they'll be free to put up checkpoints on the roads."

Ever hear of DUI checkpoints? Bye bye 4th Amendment!

But then, those occur without a national ID, so I'm not really sure what one has to do with the other.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (1)

Swift Kick (240510) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682857)

Technically, while you have the 'right' to travel by air, the airline is under no obligation to sell you a ticket or allow you into an airplane if they deem you a security risk or for any other reason. Remember that airlines are businesses, so they can do whatever they please (within the rules, of course).

If you want to buy your own plane, get licensed as a pilot, and go through whatever legal process is necessary to fly it around, then you can claim you have the right to travel by air. Of course, if you don't obey the rules, you will be grounded, just like your driver's license gets revoked if you fail to obey the rules.

With regards to biometrics, I honestly don't see what the big deal is. As a legal immigrant, I had to go through a whole set of medical tests and biometrics to establish my identity and eligibility to live and work here in the US. Every California person looking to get a Driver's License will get fingerprinted, and I imagine a number of other states do the same. Every American that wants a passport also gets fingerprinted and has to show documents such as his/her Birth Certificate, etc. So what exactly is the main objection towards a National ID card, if it will reduce the amount of documentation one has to carry around to establish his/her identity and employment eligibility, etc?

Paranoia can't be used as a valid excuse all the time.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682973)

It's not the airline refusing you air travel, it's the TSA.. no matter who they get to do it, the no fly list is compiled an maintained by the government and yes, many people have been denied access to air travel because their destination was a protest rally.

The fact that it is so hard to get a pilot's license and low cost aircraft have been denied flight approval over the years is an even bigger travesty.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (2, Informative)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683137)

Every California person looking to get a Driver's License will get fingerprinted, and I imagine a number of other states do the same. Every American that wants a passport also gets fingerprinted and has to show documents such as his/her Birth Certificate, etc.
No -- absolutely not true. I can't say that California is unique in fingerprinting drivers-license applicants, but it's definitely not widespread. I've never been fingerprinted for anything aside from a Concealed Carry Permit for a handgun. [1] (I have a suspicion that the fingerprinting requirement in California has to do with the number of illegal/undocumented/bad-IDed workers they have there, and they see fingerprints as the only practical way to keep people from using forged papers. Good reason not to live there IMO.)

In many other states, you have to prove that you're a legal resident of the state you're applying for the Drivers License in, which can involve showing them your birth certificate, Passport, Green Card, or Consular Report of Birth Abroad (equivalent of a Birth Certificate for children born to U.S. parents outside the borders of the U.S.), as well as evidence that you're actually a resident of the state itself (to keep people from double-registering), and I don't have any problem with that. But the fingerprinting seems intensely creepy.

Also, I don't know where you got the fingerprinting requirement for a Passport, but that's likewise not true. Again, you need to prove both identity and citizenship, but I've had a Passport for years and I've never been fingerprinted.

[1] And even there, I think it's creepy, and mostly only a feature of fairly liberal states/counties that are doing it as a bureaucratic hurdle to discourage people from applying for CCWs. That's definitely how it works in VA.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (1)

Swift Kick (240510) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683359)

Also, I don't know where you got the fingerprinting requirement for a Passport, but that's likewise not true. Again, you need to prove both identity and citizenship, but I've had a Passport for years and I've never been fingerprinted.
My apologies. My wife recently had to go renew her passport and I was under the impression she had to provide a thumbprint, but she didn't (I called her to check).
However, there are at least 8 states that require fingerprints for general driver's licenses (including Georgia, Texas, Colorado, etc), and it's a requirement for commercial driver's licenses for hazardous materials (according to

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (1)

a-zarkon! (1030790) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683129)

Well if you've already got to show your national ID to get on a plane or open a bank account, it's not *that* much more to require it when you rent a car. Maybe we should replace library cards with the national ID too...seems like that could be a cost-saver, plus we don't want terrorists reading dangerous books. Oh and the next time you want to take a class or go see a doctor - what could be a more authoritative way to authenticate your identity than by flashing your national ID? Maybe a terrorist group is identified to have a certain religious background - maybe we should start requiring people provide their national ID when they enter a place of worship. *If you don't have anything to hide, why would you object?* Every time you flash your national ID, it's authenticating you against some database. Guess who gets to see where and why you authenticate yourself? Maybe I'm paranoid, but I have to ask myself what the problem is that they're trying to solve? Seems like an awful lot of information will be kept on the innocent in the hope that they can catch the bad guys. I'm admittedly dense, but I don't recall getting a good explanation of how this ID will actually catch the bad guys. Has the "no fly" list caught any terrorists other than that thing with Cat Stevens a while ago? Seems to me that this is just another lock - it will probably keep the honest people honest, but I don't see it slowing down the criminals too much. Plus there's a lot of potential for misuse and abuse down the road. The first step is small, just get the national id out there and make people use it to get on a plane. Then slowly and gradually the scope will creep - it's the nature of these things. When they issued social security numbers it was primarily used for people to get social security. Look at it now - it's the de facto unique identifier number for US citizens for banking, healthcare, and a number of other things. If you throw the frog in a boiling pot he'll jump right out. Put him in a pot of cold water and gradually turn up the heat and he won't even notice that he's being cooked.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (4, Insightful)

Otter (3800) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682739)

I may be stupid, but I just don't get it.

It's not really rational. The US has this deeply embedded association of mandatory, national ID cards with Hitler or Stalin. Obviously universally accepted identifiers are necessary, but people are willing to accept driver's licenses (state-issued, and not theoretically mandatory) and social security numbers (not theoretically IDs), just not a Mandatory National ID Card like every other country in the world has.

Every country has its distinctive quirks; this is one of them.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (1)

olman (127310) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682977)

Erhm. Just that you have single unified national ID card does not necessarily follow that it's mandatory to have. For example, Finland has national ID card but I've never used it since I got a driver's licence as it's universally accepted ID and I don't want to carry more useless cards around than I have to.

There's nobody twisting your arm to get The National ID card, passport or social security card with pic will do as well.

Strange that nobody brought the UK ID scheme into this yet. On the other hand, they seem to be hell-bent on requiring you MUST CARRY the ID card on you at all times.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (1)

Otter (3800) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683083)

By "mandatory" I don't mean that you have to carry it around with you, just that every citizen and resident is routinely assigned a national identifier. (That is the case, right? If not, amend the "every other country in the world" in my original comment, which wan't intended to be literally true anyway.)

If anything, you're illustrating my point: the existence of a national ID card (in this case an RFID card) doesn't automatically lead to the Gestapo hauling you off to prison.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19683021)

Obviously universally accepted identifiers are necessary,...

Very convenient, maybe. Necessary, no.

Personally, my concern is that a "National ID" card would be overused. The obvious example would be a law that required people to carry an ID card on their person at all times and to present that card to any government official who requested it for any reason - with mandatory jail time for failure to comply. As far as I'm concerned though, even having to present ID to fly on an airline is overly intrusive.

In the end though, none of this ID card stuff is really going to matter. There will be a national database with biometric information on everyone in the USA and a person's identity will be verified merely by looking them up in the national database. For example, you show up at the check-in counter for your flight and they take a couple biometric measurements (thumb print, iris scan, etc.), look you up in the national database, determine your identity and status on the no-fly list, and (if you're lucky) let you on the plane. There will be no need to carry any kind of physical ID card.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19683081)

It's not really rational.

Yes, it is. Instead, it is the blind trust in government (any government) that is not really rational. Governments go bad. Given enough time, just about every government will go bad. The idea that "democracy" or some other scheme of the moment is magically immune to change (or that any such changes will be magically beneficial) is not really rational. Just because your silly ideas are shared by a large number of other foolish people doesn't make it any less silly.

The US has this deeply embedded association of mandatory, national ID cards with Hitler or Stalin.

Yes, we do. Because giving government power beyond what is absolutely necessary is a stupid idea. They WILL misuse it; it's what governments do. Unlike Europeans, Americans don't have the luxury of letting our government go bad knowing that some richer, stronger nation will come and bail us out of the consequences of our stupidity.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (1)

Seakip18 (1106315) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682765)

Your right. For the most part, we already have one, regardless of nation-wide laws. Services require you to provide an ID, such as boarding an airplane, making a rather large purchase and so on. If you didn't have a Driver's License or ID card, it'd be a work ID, which usually means the employer had to get documentation, etc. If your EXPECTED to have your ID with you, no matter where you go, it just lends itself to becoming open to abuse. At least now, I can walk down the street or the grocery store and not be asked for ID to prove that I'm really going to the store, and that I live and work in the area and that I am who I say I am.

Re:What's wrong with a national ID card? (1)

Vitriol+Angst (458300) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682827)

It supersedes States Rights -- which are the issuers of most IDs and permits.

Creates a national Database from which to blacklist people.

We already have laws that can deal with the Immigration problem. Besides, any employer properly paying SS, taking out Withholding and Employee taxes is going to know if they have an illegal or not. So we don't have "illegal workers" sponging off the government -- everyone who works adds value, and every HONEST employer is providing TAXes.

We have a criminal employer problem in America masquerading as something else.

>> Besides, I don't want it to be impossible to be anonymous in America. People should be good because we've empowered them and their neighbors to be good. Perfect security only results in tyranny. It would be very difficult to rebel against a corrupt government with a perfect, National ID in place.

Just imagine them going into a crowd of protesters and forcing them to hand over IDs.

Vox Populi killed the bill (5, Insightful)

sithkhan (536425) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682615)

Anyone who has been following this issue for the past six weeks knows good and well that the audacity of the elected officials to ignore, debase, and belittle their constituents created the massive ground swell of dissenting voters. To claim that the Nation ID idea caused the defeat of this bill is ludicrous. But if the blurb had commented on talk radio and conservatives, this wouldn't be Slashdot, now would it?

Conservative, liberal, and moderate voters all thought this was a poor idea - not some minor amendment to this stinking legislation.
but make sure that the last line
Generated by SlashdotRndSig [] via GreaseMonkey []

The National ID did not do it... (4, Insightful)

Swift Kick (240510) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682657)

While I can understand why privacy advocates would want to make this one of the 'main reasons' why the Immigration Bill failed, it was really not much of a deal-breaker. Sure, maybe some of the senators' votes were partially influenced by this, but there were literally dozens of amendments that were far more important which were the deal-breakers, such as:

1) Requiring that illegal immigrants go back to their country of origin to apply for the Z visa
2) Requiring that illegal immigrants had no felonies on their record
3) Requiring a lengthier background check, rather than the default 24-hour 'status adjustment' if the background check wasn't finished

The discussion has been very heated, particularly here in California, where talk show hosts have been rallying their listeners for the past few months to contact our local senators and pretty much tell them that their job is on the line if they passed this bill. California is probably the one state where illegal immigration is pretty much out of control, and the public is pretty passionate about it, because we live with it and see it first-hand.
Trust me, the National ID card was barely mentioned in any of the discussions here; enforcement of the existing laws and tougher penalties for businesses that knowingly hire illegals were the main arguments.

Honestly, I wish that Senator Kennedy moved to California and lived here for a good 6 months, so he could see how out-of-control things really are. Maybe then he'd get back in touch with reality and would stop his ignorant rhetoric about "Gestapo tactics" and whatnot.

Re:The National ID did not do it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682855)

which were the deal-breakers

Oh right, absolute deal breakers. Right up there with the Real ID in how terrible they were and how America would never stand for them.

No mention at all of the sheer stupidity of all of the congress critters on both sides of the aisle. 2 year visas for "seasonal" workers who just want to pick the crop and go back home? This is what happens when the only reality politicians see is only what their lobbyists show them, and the only values they have come with photos of dead presidents.

Re:The National ID did not do it... (3, Interesting)

ErikZ (55491) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682873)

Everyone was flipping out over this bill. But I didn't hear a single person bring up "National ID". In fact, until now I didn't realize it was part of it.

The reasons I was against the bill:

400 pages is a *lot* of loopholes. If you're going to make an enforceable immigration law, it needs to be short and sweet. Which brings up...
The non-enforcement of current immigration laws on the books. We're supposed to believe you're going to enforce the new laws, after you drag your feet on the current ones?

Re:The National ID did not do it... (2, Interesting)

Plebis (125823) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682887)

I live in California. I love it here, it's a fantastic state, and I have to say you could not be more wrong about immigration. Don't you find it a little ironic to be bitching about all those *ILLEGAL*(OMGWTFLOL!?!?!) immigrants streaming over the border into our beloved state when that same state was stolen by our nation from the very country these people are immigrating from?

Don't even get me started on the illegitimacy of any white person's claim to rights in the US. It's not as if this place was empty when we got here, and it's not as if the people who were here before us were treated well, or compensated in any way for what we (as in you and I) stole from them.

Beyond that, about the only things I can see happening because of illegal immigration here are that our buildings are being built faster (maybe even better), and our lawns are being manicured. Tell me, what harm have you seen from immigrants of any kind? Wait, don't. If you're not native (as most of the illegals are) you don't really have a right to say a damned thing to anyone about where they're going to go in what was originally THEIR FUCKING COUNTRY.

So, please, don't make me get my nail studded clue bat out, and STFU.

Re:The National ID did not do it... (1)

monxrtr (1105563) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682997)

Too bad it is THE GOVERNMENT that has made neighbors enemies. That happens when you can "vote" to take your neighbor's property rather than restrict conduct to voluntary free trade actions, like consensual sex. But it's primarily stupid liberal thugs who cheer for "no rape without representation", in the form of welfare, social security, national health care. It's out of control. People are sick of other people stealing their money. People are going to revolt if you raise their income and property taxes to pay for all the schools for illegal kids, to pay for all the healthcare and welfare of illegals.

Ban the welfare state first. Then neighbors can be neighbors again, and all people freely trading will increase net society wealth in every instance. This is simple free trade economics; trade only occurs because that which is voluntarily receieved is valued more than that which is voluntarily given away. Stop LYING and pretending someone else can choose for you or others better than you or others can choose for themselves. This is the fundamental reason why the immigration bill failed.

Re:The National ID did not do it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19683027)

a) apparently you're not familiar with the phrase "the spoils of war". b) you are unaware of the number of illegals filling up our prison system, clogging up emergency rooms, or that kill citizens of the US and c) keep the bat in its storage location. We don't want your fecal matter creating a mess.

They are a problem. You're just too stupid to realize it.

Re:The National ID did not do it... (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683123)

Last I heard, illegal immigrants have a lower criminal rate than US citizens.

Re:The National ID did not do it... (2, Insightful)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683207)

that same state was stolen by our nation from the very country these people are immigrating from?

I'll invoke a statute of limitations argument. As far as I'm concerned, it's pointless to whine about wrongs that happened over a hundred years ago. There is no person alive today that had anything to do with the misdeeds that you complain about. The water flowed under the bridge and has already flowed into the ocean. Please get over it. I thought history has shown that generations-old grudges does no one any good.

Re:The National ID did not do it... (2, Insightful)

Swift Kick (240510) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683211)

The fact that California used to be part of Mexico a century ago has no meaning in the current discussion. The fact is that California *IS* part of the United States, and as so, if you are not here legally, you are here *illegally*.

No one said that 'white persons' have more of a claim to rights in the US. Americans have a claim here, because they were born here or became citizens. This includes white, black, hispanic, indian, whatever.
Mexicans (to use your example) have no claim to US soil, just like Germans have no claim on French soil, or Italians have claim to Spanish soil, just because hundreds of years ago, they controlled part of it. National borders exist because at some point in time, when there was a conflict, one side won and the other side lost. That's how it always works.

Now, with regards to what harm have I seen from immigrants? Well, depends. Being a legal immigrant, I can tell you that I pay income taxes, property taxes (I own a home), have a job, and I'm a productive member of my community.I know a number of other legal immigrants that do exactly the same, and love this country as only someone that views it as the land of true oportunity could.

Illegal immigrants, on the other hand, are a burden on the health system (a number of emergency rooms in California hospitals closed because bills were not being paid), are unsafe drivers (number of hit-and-run accidents by unlicensed and uninsured drivers has skyrocketed in California), drain resources in the education system (some districts are over made up of over 70% illegal aliens), all the while not contributing one dime to the infrastructure that supports them (since they don't pay taxes because they have no documentation or are paid in cash at their construction/landscaping/agricultural jobs).

I won't even start on the failure rates of hispanic students in the public school system compared to other minorities, or the criminal statistics for hispanic males, most of which never get deported back to their country because local law enforcement has their hands tied by things like Proposition 87 in LA, where police cannot ask about residency status, even if they have reason to believe the person is here illegally.

Overall, I think you might not want to get that nail-studded clue bat out... you might end up injuring yourself.


Re:The National ID did not do it... (1)

xero314 (722674) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683269)

Excuse me but I, and the vast majority of everyone I associate with is a United States Native and I did not steal from anyone. Heck I've never even been out of the country for more than a weekend, so don't even try and say I'm not native. The fact that some associates of my ancestors, and maybe even my ancestors themselves, invaded a foreign country 200 years ago doesn't strip me of the right to defend my country of origin, or even my country of residence, from foreign invasion. What you are basically saying is that if your parents molested you that you would not have the right to stand up against those that molest children. Yes my ancestors, hundreds of years ago, may have been wrong in invading a foreign country, or maybe even in having slaves, but guess what, I didn't even know any of them. So now that I am growing up in the country I was born in I am going to fight to make sure that no one else makes the same mistake my ancestors did. And if you don't think a million foreign nationals crossing the borders of your country illegal is not an invasion than I think you need to read a little more and probably pick up a dictionary.

Look, I don't think you know what the term native means since you keep miss using it. There is no one that was born in the United States, and there for native, that is here illegally. You and the rest of the cowards should stop blaming everything on people who are long since dead and actually start standing up for yourself.

And in case you are curious I am of mixed descent having both Native American and European ancestors.

Re:The National ID did not do it... (1)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682995)

Agreed. I used to be pretty far to the left (and as I've grown older and more mature, have moved towards being a moderate). No matter what my political views were though, Senator Kennedy always came off as a douchebag.

Re:The National ID did not do it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19683131)

Why is there so much focused vitriol against people who are basically hard working and poor? The vast majority of illegal immigrants actually do pay taxes and do follow the laws (excluding immigrating illegally). I just don't understand why people aren't in favor of bringing these people into the fold and if anything enriching our country (culturally and monetarily).

Re:The National ID did not do it... (1)

monxrtr (1105563) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683253)

Because bringing these people into the fold does not "enrich" our country culturally and monetarily). That's the *only* reason why the vast majority of people are against the ILLEGAL (let's not forget that too) immigration bill. They aren't paying for their kids schools (and let's be honest, it's a rabbit population), aren't paying for their health care, aren't paying for their welfare. It's a massive net drain on the material prosperity of the average middle class american citizen. ILLEGALS showed their true colors with the first protests, waving those Mexican flags, trying to mobilize into a legitimate citizen granted voting block to turn this country into a socialist Mexican hell hole. Theses illegal immigrants are too stupid to understand that they left Mexico because it's a socialist hell hole. We don't want that political Che disease infecting this country any more than it already has. Civility only exists through voluntary peaceful consensual free market exchange. And socialist national universal health care is not a civil system, it's a system of violence that takes by force from some to redistribute to others. Stop LYING otherwise.

Re:The National ID did not do it... (1)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683247)

Why is it a problem to bar those that committed felonies when they were here illegally? I don't understand why that's a deal breaker. Is the smog getting to you guys?

How is this different... (3, Interesting)

jshriverWVU (810740) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682679)

from what we already do? Personally I think it would be easier to carry around a national ID card instead of carrying my License, SS card, Birth certificate, etc.

Re:How is this different... (0, Troll)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682839)

And the trains always ran on time in Nazi Germany.. I hate give reason to invoke Godwin's Law here but this is on topic.

Every time the government aims to make things "more efficient" or "easier", ask yourself this: Would you prefer an efficient Third Reich or a slow bureaucratic one?

How much evil do you really want an administration to be able to enact in a single term?

Re:How is this different... (1)

Swift Kick (240510) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682993)

You know, while I believe the current administration is full of idiots and liars, I really find statements like yours incredibly ignorant.

Honestly, comparing the US to the Nazi Germany? How daft can you possibly be?

Can you explain how sites like DailyKOS, MoveOn, and their contributors are still up and running, despite all their constant condemnation of the government, with little to no repercussions on the owners/operators of said websites?
Can you explain how popular meetings and demonstrations like the Impeach Bush rallies up in San Francisco that seem to occur almost every weekend can go on without any government interference (other than the local police for traffic/safety reasons)?

Do you honestly think that a Nazi-like regime would allow things such as this to go on?

Now compare the US to say, Venezuela and its ruler, Cesar Chavez. Which one do you really think has more in common with Nazi Germany?

Re:How is this different... (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683049)

Imagine that in the future some administration decides to crack down on desidents. Exactly how much damage do you want them to be able to do in the 4 years before you can kick them out of office? That is the point I was trying to make.

I wasn't saying that the US was like Nazi Germany (for fuck sake) I was saying that it isn't like Nazi Germany, and if you want to keep it that way, you better stop this "let's make things more efficient" bullshit.

Re:How is this different... (1)

spirit of reason (989882) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683343)

The thing is that it won't take four years for them to get kicked out of office (and besides, we're dealing with party politics, so it generally only takes two years to change the majority party). If the problem becomes widespread enough, others will definitely seize the opportunity to invoke the impeachment process and gain power. There is a certain amount of self-moderation from the competition between the two parties, and although the majority of Americans are ridiculously ignorant, it would be really hard to get away with a significant level of evil against citizens for any extended period of time

Re:How is this different... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19683279)

My Grandmother who was in Germany in 1933 would disagree. We are not there yet, but the changes happened gradually. Ever hear of the frog in the pot analogy? When she raised concerned she was told the same thing. Don't worry, everything is going to be alright. Just like the people were told up to the gas chambers, everything is going to be alright. It's just a shower.

Re:How is this different... (1)

xero314 (722674) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683013)

Would you prefer an efficient Third Reich or a slow bureaucratic one?
If my choice is between efficiency and inefficiency I will always choose the former.

What this has to do with a National ID card, or even Real ID, I have no idea, but you asked the question so I felt compelled to answer.

Re:How is this different... (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683079)

What it has to do with a Real-ID is that National IDs make the national government more efficient.. duh.

So you want your government to be efficient at being evil? Or do you just want them to be efficient when they're being nice and democratic?

You can't have it both ways.

Re:How is this different... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682879)

It'd also be easier for someone to track you, or for someone to steal your entire identity, if all those separate forms of ID are combined into one and then used at all levels of government and by all businesses wanting identification. Imagine if you went to get a cell phone and they demanded a copy of your driver's license, social security number, birth certificate and passport - all four of them - in order to run a credit check and let you use their service. With a single ID combining them, that'll be common not just for credit checks but when you just want to have a beer at a pub. Not a good thing, IMO.

There already is a national ID. (4, Insightful)

ErikTheRed (162431) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682699)

Right here in the US. In fact, nearly all countries have a nationally issued, highly standardized ID that's used in all sorts of high-security situations, banking transactions,etc. It's called a passport. Everyone should have one anyway. Easy solution, and doesn't require one single new thing (and yes, I know, there's presently a backlog on US passport applications but This Too Will Pass).

Also, as has been mentioned earlier, the ACLU trying to spin this as a rejection of RealID is stupid beyond belief (this got posted as a story how???). The right hates is because there's too much amnesty, the left hates it because there's not enough amnesty, and most of the people in the middle hate it because it took a reasonably good idea and turned it into an unprincipled pork-fest as senators were bought and sold with pet projects in their districts. In other words, politics as usual.

I need a job (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682791)

Millions of illegal people with jobs in this country and I can't find one

Just has to be done (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#19682831)

Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

The NAZIS want to control you, (2, Informative)

lowell (66406) | more than 7 years ago | (#19682909)

The fact that this bill was even proposed shows you how out of touch most of our elected officials are. They dont really care about you just about keeping there jobs. All of the Presidential candidates look the same on both sides of the aisle, except Ron Paul, someone who has actually read the Constitution.

Revolution is coming

Re:The NAZIS want to control you, (1)

Rakishi (759894) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683015)

Revolution is coming
Well you go on thinking that. Just like the socialists, the communists, the hippies and all the other such groups. No one cares. No one cares about all the abuse by the FBI, CIA, president and so on that has been going on for decades (see Nixon). It used to be that almost anything was allowed because of the communists lurking behind every corner, now its because of the terrorists or the pedophiles or god knows what group.

I doubt you'd want a revolution anyway, the result of it wouldn't be a more democratic system but rather a directorship (in actuality if not in name at first). That is the only possible form of revolution remaining now, a takeover by a small group or a single person largely ignoring the masses themselves (save for token support such as riots or such).

BS, the "Real ID" part was stripped out (2, Informative)

WCMI92 (592436) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683053)

I don't like the idea of national ID either, but I do think that non citizens in this country should probably have to have something like this.

The immigration bill died because Americans literally melted down the Senate's phone system because they don't want to grant amnesty now for border enforcement later since it's well known that the government has NO interest whatsoever in doing this.

The support for the legalization of criminal illegal aliens comes both from the far left (who sees a low skilled, uneducated underclass they can entice into a voting block with welfare programs) and the far right (who sees cheap labor that they can use to artificially depress wages). Polls show that 80% of the country opposes it.

I dont't care what killed it or why (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683061)

I'm just glad it's dead.

I don't know what's more tragic: that John and Robert Kennedy were killed, or that Ted wasn't.

Whatever it took.. (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683161)

The immigration bill was bad bad bad.. If the also bad national ID clause is what killed it.. great!

What? You want to see my papers?

Christ on a Cross (1)

N8F8 (4562) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683171)

Kudos to the ACLU for striking while the brand is hot to USE this moment to push an agenda. Again Congress has proven that doing nothing for the wrong reason is easier than doing something for the right reason. Huh?

This has been a mass awakening (4, Insightful)

chromozone (847904) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683187)

I hear a lot of people taking credit for the demise of the immigration bill, and many people and groups did take issue with it over one provison or another. However I think the main reason it went down was because many people sharply realised the government is broken and not only NOT looking out for their interests but it has outright contempt for them. People have been dismayed that after the WTC attack and the Iraq war, border security remains relaxed in the extreme. Republican and Democrat voters were both against this bill, and when the vast majority of people were told their concerns were "secondary" if not selfish it became clear special interests were leading the government and not the people. A key element was that nobody believed the government would actually enforce any of the provisions included in the bill since they have such a miserable record of it in the past (and now its clear the governement can't even process passport requests or protect people from contaminated foods and they even hope to do a good job of that). With illegal immigration its been clear the powers that be don't want to stop it at all, and that the will of the people was seen seen as a hindrance that needs to be bulldozered if it can't be deceived. The main factor in the defeat of the bill was that many voters finally had the realisation that their government has kicked them to the curb. Lying and empty promises won't work anymore.

Bah! Amnesty and H1-Bs Killed "The Grand Bargain" (1)

Proudrooster (580120) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683191)

RealID wasn't even a consideration. The American people (including me) calling/emailing their Senators and overwhelming both the phone and email system caused this bill to come crashing down.

This "Grand Bargain" was great for those seeking el-cheapo workers aka (Corporations)and great for Democrats looking to purchase a new hispanic voting block. I just don't understand how so many can place greed over proper management of our country and culture. I am not opposed to immigration but opening the floodgates to 12-20 million people is insane.

We need to secure our borders and halt all immigration until we can come up with a fair system. The system needs to be fair to the immigrant and fair to the American worker. Sorry, I was ranting, I just feel badly for the poor H1-B's out there stuck in slave labor situations. I also feel badly for Americans out of work due to unfair immigration.

Either we come up with a fair system or wait for our standard of living to equalize with that of Mexico, Communist China, and India. It's a complex global problem, but Real-ID is not even a factor.

Real ID and Illegal Immigration (2, Interesting)

COredneck (598733) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683223)

Kind of funny that I don't quite agree totally with the Republican or Democrat side on these issues.

I am in favor of cracking down on illegal immigration - not here legally, leave the country and go back home and apply to immigrate here. However, Real ID is not needed and it is a de-facto National ID card, plain and simple. There is no place for it here in the USA. There is no need for linking driver databases or the Tri-National Driver License Agreement [] . The Real ID should be repealed and anyone and everyone should Contact Congress [] and demand its repeal and do it while the Democrats control Congress. Rather than having laws that curtail civil liberties of US citizens, we need to first enforce the laws on the books instead of the typical attitude of looking the other way. Each time the gov't has a shortcoming of enforcing their laws, they pass more laws and we citizens get punished for it. This vicious cycle needs to end.

On the legal immigration issue, I have expressed interest in leaving the USA such as go live in New Zealand. However, I would do ths the legal way though. I went there after Christmas for vacation and when I went through immigration, my passport was stamped with a 3 month visitor permit with an expiration 3 months after the date of the stamp which is the arrival date. The stamp mentioned that if I was in NZ after 3 months (past the expiration date), I was subject to being deported from the country. If I wanted to be there longer than 3 months, I would have to go to NZ immigration and ask for an extention of the permit. At that point, they would extend it or not. If not, I have to leave before the expiration date. Simple rules. It is something we should expect of those who visit the USA or any other country. BTW, the permit did not allow me to earn an income there. That is a different permit which takes paperwork to get. I am too old (older than 30) to get a Working Holiday Permit like many young people get such as college students and recent graduates.

Real ID is coming no matter what. (5, Interesting)

Ralph Spoilsport (673134) | more than 7 years ago | (#19683263)


Mexico's social infrastructure is underwritten by profits from PEMEX, Mexico's oil company. Unfortunately, PEMEX's largest oil field, Cantarell, is in massive decline, according to PEMEX's CEO. []

Based on a 1.9Mb/d consumption for Mexico, they will stop exporting oil in five years, say 2012... but, this would cut govt revenue around 7% per year, and shredding what little social infrastructure they have.

The result?

They will walk north.

You think Mexican immigration is bad now? Wait until 2015. I wouldn't be surprised if the USgov set up a 100 yard free fire zone on the southern border, or, they simply let everyone in, and drive the wages in the US down to Mexican levels.


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