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DHS Official Suggests REAL ID Mission Creep

kdawson posted more than 6 years ago | from the just-say-no dept.

Privacy 277

The Register noticed that a senior US Department of Homeland Security official has floated the idea of requiring citizens to produce federally compliant identification before purchasing some over-the-counter medicines — specifically, pseudophedrine. The federal ID standard spelled out by the REAL ID act has been sold as applying only to air travel and entry to federal buildings and nuclear facilities. A blogger on the Center for Democracy and Technology site said, "[The] suggested mission creep pushes the REAL ID program farther down the slippery slope toward a true national ID card." Speaking of federal buildings, CNet has a state-by-state enumeration of what will happen on May 11, when REAL ID comes into effect, to citizens who attempt to enter, say, the Washington DC visitors bureau.

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Dear God (2, Funny)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319646)

Won't someone please think of the meth addicts?

Re:Dear God (4, Insightful)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319848)

[slashdot.org]

The whole pseudoephedrine thing is not about the meth addicts. Sure, that's the excuse they used, but the real reason for the provision for requiring ID on pseudoephedrine and limiting the quantity for purchase of these drugs in the so-called 'Stop Meth Act' is to prevent people from using them as a sort of 'speed lite'. Teenagers were found to be using them as 'pep' pills and 'smart' pills (because pseudoephedrine is a stimulate that's quite a bit stronger than caffeine) and so the purpose was really to keep people from buying them and using them for that purpose.

You can either buy the party line or examine the evidence yourself: the truth is that purchasing pseudoephedrine-containing drugs in certain combinations, such as with guafenesin, does not require ID and does not have any purchase limit. Making meth from psuedoephededrine+guafenesin is not much more difficult than making it from any other pseudoephedrine-containing drug. However, the pseudoephedrine+guafenesin combination cannot be used as a 'pep' or a 'smart' drug, because the guafenesin will make you sick if you take it in too high of a dose.

This can all be verified with a simple Google search.

Think for yourselves, people. Please. For all that is good in this world, please starting thinking for yourselves.

Re:Dear God (5, Insightful)

Alexpkeaton1010 (1101915) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319994)

Or the parent could calm down and let the grandparent make a joke without wanting them to research how exactly to make Meth.

Re:Dear God (3, Informative)

Detritus (11846) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320626)

Every time I purchase Primatene tablets, each of which contains 12.5 mg of ephedrine hydrochloride and 200 mg of guaifenesin, I have to show my driver's license and sign a drug register. They record my name, address, and the total quantity of ephedrine in the purchased item. They don't care whether or not it is formulated with guaifenesin.

Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act of 2005 (CMEA) [wikipedia.org]

Re:Dear God (2, Informative)

spyrochaete (707033) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320682)

As much as I like to put a cap on alarmist propaganda in favour of government control, I have to admit that I've used pseudoephedrine for the purpose you mention. I actually bought some at a rave (knowingly) to pep me up. It worked great so I bought some from a health store (it's since become illegal to sell). Considering the alternatives is it so bad?

Re:Dear God (5, Interesting)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319968)

Won't someone please think of the meth addicts?

Apparently they are. And just as apparently, the US government considers drug use to be terrorism. [slashdot.org] It's the war on [next thing to extend the grasp of government power and take away your consitituional rights].

Would someone please point to the section of the US Constitution that gives the government the power to tell me what I can put in my body? And don't give me that "interstate commerce" bunk.

I voted for Ron Paul yesterday. I smoke pot, you would have to be a damned fool would vote for someone who would condone laws that would put you in prison for something you enjoy. When this country was founded, a man had the right to screw his life up any way he pleased. No more.

Sadly, I won't be able to vote for him in the general election. If the Libertarians aren't on the ballot I'm not sure who I'll vote for, but it won't be a Republicrat*.

-mcgrew

*A "Republicrat" is the US' single political party. It has two wings, the Republicans and the Democrats. The Republicrat Party wants the things I love outlawed. I'd like to see neckties outlawed, or mandated that anyone who wears one hangs himself with it.!

Re:Dear God (2, Interesting)

ddrichardson (869910) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320182)

Won't someone please think of the meth addicts?

I don't know about that, but whoever moderated this, very obvious, joke as "insightful" is definitely smoking something.

Re:Dear God (0)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320848)

Won't someone please think of the meth addicts?
I don't know about that, but whoever moderated this, very obvious, joke as "insightful" is definitely smoking something.

There are 4 reasons to do this:

  1. Slashdot's karma system. Mods of "Funny" aren't counted (or at least they weren't a while back) so you could start at 1, get 4 +1 Funnies, then 4 -1 Overrated, and it wouldn't be a wash - you'd end up losing 4 karma points.
  2. People's personal settings: If they rate everything that's "Funny" as -5, they don't get to see some of the funny stuff
  3. It's also accurate - most funny jokes require a certain insight into the culture, target audience, etc
  4. 42

Hey fudgepacker! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22320470)

THIS IS A BLATANT GUISE. Will you PLEASE start thinking for yourself? Tweaker now has to get a RealID to get pseudoephedrine. That is all. How does this stop him from getting pseudoephedrine? Please tell me that.

The whole notion of this is incredibly retarded to associate RealID with stopping meth production. You make some sort of association and then a statement, and BAM! people buy it right up even if it makes absolutely no sense when you bother to read it.

Or just show your passport (2, Insightful)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319656)

Since I've spent years outside the U.S., I don't have a driver's license. When I return to the U.S., I use my passport as identification to purchase alcohol or travel long distances. If people are concerned about Real ID posing massive privacy issues, why haven't people like me using our passports faced this yet?

Re:Or just show your passport (5, Insightful)

bhima (46039) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319724)

I've maintained 2 driver's licenses for years because of troubles using passports as an ID and using my non-US driver's license in the US. One policeman in Tennessee detained me for using a "fake license" in 2001.

As a side benefit my personal data in databases within the US is extremely inconsistent. As I'll use any convenient address or data when I fill out whatever form I'm using. I do the same thing with the bank accounts I maintain within the US.

Having said all of that in my opinion the majority of US government is grossly incompetent and they have no business having access to my personal data. Just because I haven't figured out some cataclysmically stupid and devastating thing to do with my own personal data does not mean that some ass in government can't come with something (which would invariably be worse).

If they spent all this time & money understanding what about American society creates many addicts we'd be done already. Limiting purchases of cold medicine is just drug war theater

Re:Or just show your passport (2, Insightful)

conlaw (983784) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320514)

Having said all of that in my opinion the majority of US government is grossly incompetent and they have no business having access to my personal data.

I think they have already screwed it up. According to the current head of DHS, as quoted on CNN, http://www.news.com/8301-10784_3-9771953-7.html [news.com]

[I}mproved quality will come about, in part, because motor vehicle administrators will be required to link into databases to verify the legitimacy of the underlying identification documents, such as birth certificates, that Americans submit when they apply for Real ID-compliant cards.

Great, that means you now have to pick someone living to impersonate by use of a birth certificate. But if I can present the birth certificate of someone roughly my age who is still alive according the database (presumably still a state function), how does that verify anything? Or am I going to have to take of my shoes so that they can compare my footprint with the one they took in the hospital many years ago?

Re:Or just show your passport (2, Interesting)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319740)

I believe your passport already applies to the realid standards. I think the concern is, and I'm sure I'll be corrected if I'm wrong, that America is moving towards requiring Federally mandated and controlled id - period.
 
On a slightly related note, I've been going through a ton of crap recently trying to find out if my passport is valid. I accidentally washed it and I don't know if the RFID chip inside is still functional. Externally it looks brand new. I didn't want to be traveling and have that be a problem, but a new passport would be more money than I want to spend right now - and I just paid for this one.
 
It's a catch-22 thing. The readers to check if the chip is functional are at my local airport. The airport customs people wont let me in unless I'm traveling. I went round and round with people on the phone about this, and was finally told by a customs official - "We see tons of passports where the chip is not functional, don't worry about it."
 
When I go to Mexico next month I guess I'll find out for sure. But it is funny - all the extra cost of this chip - the extra security concerns and apparently it is irrelevant anyway.

Re:Or just show your passport (3, Funny)

Yetihehe (971185) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319790)

I accidentally washed it and I don't know if the RFID chip inside is still functional. Externally it looks brand new.
It's probably still working. Stick it in microwave, you will have certainty.

Re:Or just show your passport (1)

stoolpigeon (454276) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319808)

That's actually a good point as apparently having it be nonfunctional will have no impact on use other than providing a more secure document.

Drying RFID chip in passport (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22320472)

I've been going through a ton of crap recently trying to find out if my passport is valid. I accidentally washed it and I don't know if the RFID chip inside is still functional. Externally it looks brand new. I didn't want to be traveling and have that be a problem, but a new passport would be more money than I want to spend right now - and I just paid for this one.

A good question. If you'd merely dropped it into a puddle, the RFID chip very likely wouldn't have gotten wet, but since you actually washed it, the RFID chip probably has water on it. It is interior to the passport, so it won't dry out easily. With water shorting out the traces, the chip probably won't work at all, and if it does work, it will reply nonsense data.

Unfortunately, since the RFID chip is so embedded, a hair-dryer won't suffice to dry it out, you need a deeper heating. The most certain method is going to be to use a microwave oven. Wrap the passport in a paper towel, and put it in a microwave; about 1.5 minutes at "high" should do the trick, no problem.

I wonder... (5, Insightful)

azuredrake (1069906) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319660)

I wonder if the DHS consciously constructs slippery slopes and has timelines drawn up for when to feed what to the American people, or if they're just really good at accidentally destroying our civil liberties...

Re:I wonder... (0, Flamebait)

Bios_Hakr (68586) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319812)

You do, of course, realize that the "slippery slope" is a logical fallacy? Just because we legalize A does not mean we will allow B.

For instance: Allowing gay marriage will lead to everyone in the US fucking each other in the ass.

Just because you require a RealID to purchase a powerful stimulant does not mean that you have to "card in" when you go to church/school/work/fly/etc...

Likewise, an ad hominem attack is also a logical fallacy. Just because it comes from DHS does mot mean it's a bad idea.

Re:I wonder... (3, Interesting)

azuredrake (1069906) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319950)

I do, of course, realize that our government and legislation is highly based on precedent. If the legislature has previously passed a bill similar to a newly proposed one, it is much easier to pass.

And yes, I am a political scientist.

I did not say that everything from DHS is bad. I said that this is from DHS, and that this is bad. I actually did not mean to imply that all DHS work is bad. The point is that if there is a charge for getting a RealID, which there will be, and if the RealID is required to get a job, for instance, then people who are poor will suffer even more than they do now.

The "Slippery Slope" (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22320100)

Though some claim it to be a logical fallacy, there is some instances in the past where a change (for the better) has lead to other changes (for the better).

Example, voting rights. Men -> other races -> Women -> All citizens 18+ (I think I have the general order correct)

Though in situations such as these it's not really a slope being slipped down, but rather a peak being climbed to. However, and this is why I use it as an example, each time somebody proposed opening up voting to more people there were a fair share of critics trying to argue why it would be wrong or dangerous.

To sum it up quickly: The slippery slope may not always be the best logic to use, but there are plenty of historical examples of where one change/event/decision directly set precident to the next.

You yourself are using somewhat faulty logic by employing such an absurd/extreme Scenario B.

Re:The "Slippery Slope" (1)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320540)

If you're using the slippery slope combined with an historical example, that's two things. The slippery slope is indeed a logical fallacy, and is a faulty reason to believe something, so you discard it. The historical example might actually be appropriate and convincing, so might justify the statement. A justified historical example is NOT a slippery slope fallacy.

The slippery slope fallacy means that you say that statement C is true because statement A was true which causes statement B to be true, and there is a progression there. End of argument.

Re:I wonder... (5, Insightful)

johannesg (664142) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320204)

The slippery slope is not at all a logical fallacy. There is no implication that step (1) will necessarily lead to step (2), just the observation that step (1) will make it easier to sell step (2) at a later date because the perceived cost of either steps (1) or (2) is below the protest threshold, while presumably the total cost of steps (1) and (2) together is considered too large to stomach by many.

To place this in context, once there is a national ID card it will be easier to add more and more functions over time. However, would you accept it if you were told that you will need to show this card to conduct any financial transactions, own a gun, travel beyond 30km from your house, or exercise your right to free speech? to name just some possibilities...

The slippery slope is not that these things are somehow implied to the introduction of national ID, but they are clearly made easier by it, and some people may already be planning the introduction of further measures along the lines I have suggested.

Re:I wonder... (1, Informative)

Profane MuthaFucka (574406) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320364)

The slipery slope IS a logical fallacy, because it'so often given as the reason something is true. Sometimes, the slippery slope is justified, and sometimes it is not. But that justification has to be determined by some other investigation or rationale. The slippery slope isn't good enough by itself.
Don't be confused and think that a logical fallacy is a reason to disbelieve something. Indeed, if someone uses a logical fallacy to justify their argument, then it would be ANOTHER logical fallacy to assume that anything justified by a logical fallacy is false.

In the example you gave, the slippery slope may indeed be justified, but that's because you explained another reason why that is so. It is indeed reasonable to consider that at some point this Real ID will be used to control gun ownership, as it may be possible, and has some historical basis.

However, the slippery slope would not justify a claim that if we have Real ID it will be used to control the purchase of frozen peas. We have made another analysis right there to *rule out* the slippery slope, because it's ridiculous.

Therefore, the slippery slope is indeed a logical fallacy. You ALWAYS have to use some other judgement to validate if it is warranted or not. You cannot determine the truth value of a statement based on the slippery slope alone.

A fallacy requires that it be WRONG (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22320802)

So do you know that it won't happen?

No.

It's ALWAYS been "papers please" in the U.S. (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320230)

I doubt that there are very many people here who don't already have to "card in" to do most of that stuff already. I already have to show my employee ID to get into work, many students and teachers at schools also have school ID's, you already have to show an ID to fly, etc. And God help you if you get pulled over by a cop or stopped at a roadblock and don't have at least three or four forms of "papers" (in my state we have to show license, registration, plates, proof of insurance, and blow into a breathalyzer if they want to really fuck with you).

The federal ID debate is simply a matter of how much we want to centralize it.

Re:I wonder... (4, Insightful)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320342)

The slippery slope is not a universal logical fallacy. When applied to political agendas it is often a valid arguement. Incremental steps are used all the time by interest groups to get their way in the end.

The problem is that people are calling the slippery slope argument a logical fallacy based on its context as a mathematical/scientific proof.

But it is a common practice (for good or ill) to try and reach a goal through incremental steps. Many see medical marijuana as a step to reaching the full legalization of the drug. When slavery was banned in the UK, it didn't happen overnight, it took a lot of little steps and pressures (like attacking the profits of the slave traders rather than the slave trade).

But it also works in the other direction. Maybe not a slippery slope, but a stepladder to tyrrany. Just because the term is associated with a mathematical logical fallacy, doesn't mean that it doesn't exist. The behaviour of human beings doesn't mean they will recognize that they are 'falling' for a logical fallacy.

Re:I wonder... (1)

moeinvt (851793) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320582)

OK, From a pure logical sense, you are correct.

HOWEVER, we have a mountain of evidence based on direct observation of the past behavior of our government, and other governments around the world, indicating that the "slippery slope" is very real. We also have an increasing amount of evidence to suggest that anything coming out of the DHS is a BAD idea. If they come out with 10 bad ideas in a row, am I to assume that it's a coin toss as to whether their next policy proposal will be good or bad?

It's called inductive reasoning. Is that a fallacy as well?

We're not writing code or playing around with probability theory and the philosophy of logic. Welcome to the reality of Big Government (Brother?)

Re:I wonder... (1)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320902)

For instance: Allowing gay marriage will lead to everyone in the US fucking each other in the ass.

Hey - the government doesn't like competition!

Re:I wonder... (0, Troll)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319986)

I wonder if the DHS consciously constructs slippery slopes and has timelines drawn up for when to feed what to the American people, or if they're just really good at accidentally destroying our God-given RIGHTS...

There, fixed that for ya.

Re:I wonder... (2, Insightful)

eggnoglatte (1047660) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320286)

You introduced a fictional character ino an otherwise rational discussion. How is that fixing anything?

Re:I wonder... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22320580)

Judging by the past and highly consistent behavior of most people, it would
be a good strategy for anyone -- autocrat or otherwise -- to follow.

For every slight diminution of civil liberty, there will be predictable rumblings
and mild protests but these will quickly fade. Then a period of utter
acceptance will ensue as the initial infraction becomes imperceptible to
the masses. Through a repetition of this process any level of authoritarianism
can be easily invoked and maintained.

I am cynical. I have lost all faith.

But I have excellent and indisputable reasons.

will the nazi felons have to show id before.... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22319666)

accepting bribes, ordering up more murder & mayhem etc...? no? why not? let yOUR conscience be yOUR guide. you can be more helpful than you might have imagined. there are still some choices. if they do not suit you, consider the likely results of continuing to follow the corepirate nazi hypenosys story LIEn, whereas anything of relevance is replaced almost instantly with pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking propaganda or 'celebrity' trivia 'foam'. meanwhile; don't forget to get a little more oxygen on yOUR brain, & look up in the sky from time to time, starting early in the day. there's lots going on up there.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071229/ap_on_sc/ye_climate_records;_ylt=A0WTcVgednZHP2gB9wms0NUE [yahoo.com]
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080108/ts_alt_afp/ushealthfrancemortality;_ylt=A9G_RngbRIVHsYAAfCas0NUE [yahoo.com]
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/31/opinion/31mon1.html?em&ex=1199336400&en=c4b5414371631707&ei=5087%0A [nytimes.com]

is it time to get real yet? A LOT of energy is being squandered in attempts to keep US in the dark. in the end (give or take a few 1000 years), the creators will prevail (world without end, etc...), as it has always been. the process of gaining yOUR release from the current hostage situation may not be what you might think it is. butt of course, most of US don't know, or care what a precarious/fatal situation we're in. for example; the insidious attempts by the felonious corepirate nazi execrable to block the suns' light, interfering with a requirement (sunlight) for us to stay healthy/alive. it's likely not good for yOUR health/memories 'else they'd be bragging about it? we're intending for the whoreabully deceptive (they'll do ANYTHING for a bit more monIE/power) felons to give up/fail even further, in attempting to control the 'weather', as well as a # of other things/events.

http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&q=video+cloud+spraying [google.com]

dictator style micro management has never worked (for very long). it's an illness. tie that with life0cidal aggression & softwar gangster style bullying, & what do we have? a greed/fear/ego based recipe for disaster. meanwhile, you can help to stop the bleeding (loss of life & limb);

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/28/vermont.banning.bush.ap/index.html [cnn.com]

the bleeding must be stopped before any healing can begin. jailing a couple of corepirate nazi hired goons would send a clear message to the rest of the world from US. any truthful look at the 'scorecard' would reveal that we are a society in decline/deep doo-doo, despite all of the scriptdead pr ?firm? generated drum beating & flag waving propaganda that we are constantly bombarded with. is it time to get real yet? please consider carefully ALL of yOUR other 'options'. the creators will prevail. as it has always been.

corepirate nazi execrable costs outweigh benefits
(Score:-)mynuts won, the king is a fink)
by ourselves on everyday 24/7

as there are no benefits, just more&more death/debt & disruption. fortunately there's an 'army' of light bringers, coming yOUR way. the little ones/innocents must/will be protected. after the big flash, ALL of yOUR imaginary 'borders' may blur a bit? for each of the creators' innocents harmed in any way, there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/us, as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile, will not be available. 'vote' with (what's left in) yOUR wallet, & by your behaviors. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi glowbull warmongering execrable. some of US should consider ourselves somewhat fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate. it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc.... as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis. concern about the course of events that will occur should the life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order. 'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

meanwhile, the life0cidal philistines continue on their path of death, debt, & disruption for most of US. gov. bush denies health care for the little ones;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/10/03/bush.veto/index.html [cnn.com]

whilst demanding/extorting billions to paint more targets on the bigger kids;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/12/bush.war.funding/index.html [cnn.com]

& pretending that it isn't happening here;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article3086937.ece [timesonline.co.uk]
all is not lost/forgotten/forgiven

(yOUR elected) president al gore (deciding not to wait for the much anticipated 'lonesome al answers yOUR questions' interview here on /.) continues to attempt to shed some light on yOUR foibles. talk about reverse polarity;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article3046116.ece [timesonline.co.uk]

Re:will the nazi felons have to show id before.... (1)

Artuir (1226648) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319836)

Someone forgot to take their meds. Besides, no worries! Al Gore is just the president of the internet, not the country.

Wait...wha? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22319920)

You overabundance of "clever" misspellings (Did I honestly see "corepirate" used more than once in a post?) kills any sort of legitimate statement you may have been trying for. At least, I hope those were intentional.

Regardless, after about a paragraph of that...I just gave up on it as some spam post. I imagine at some point there's reference to a Bank in Nigeria. And maybe a large abundance of monies if I can help him pay a small transaction fee.

And did somebody REALLY Mod that post insightful? How?

personal identity number (3, Interesting)

raffe (28595) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319668)

I am not American but I wonder why you have such problems with personal identity numbers [wikipedia.org] . Here in Sweden we had them since 1947 and we all have ID cards with this number, name, address and a picture. Its really an easy way to identify yourself. All organizations also have an identity number.

Re:personal identity number (5, Insightful)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319736)

Well here's the thing.

Just about everyone in the US has at least two government issued IDs: A driver's license (state issued) and a social security card (federally issued). Social security cards do not have a photo. For those that do not have a driver's license, a passport is also acceptable (as someone already mentioned) as photo ID.

There are two reasons why no rational person likes the Real ID Act. First, a minor point, is that we already have the above ID options and they work just fine. Second, and more important, there is currently no massive federally-controlled database containing ALL of the information in one spot. Given the government's track record of ineptitude and maleficence - especially in the past eight years - the last thing a sane person wants is to put all of the nation's personal information into the exclusive hands of a single government entity.

In short, it's both redundant and dangerous for our liberty. Of course all the chicken-littles will cry that we need it for security but even they know deep inside that's a load of shit.
=Smidge=

Re:personal identity number (2, Funny)

oyenstikker (536040) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320056)

they know deep inside that's a load of shit.

Their brains might be able to figure out that it is a load of shit, but thinking is so 20th century. Now, we know with our guts. And their guts know that they need to track every movement of your and your money, to protect you from yourself.

Re:personal identity number (1)

Chris Mattern (191822) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320102)

Just about everyone in the US has at least two government issued IDs: A driver's license (state issued) and a social security card (federally issued). Social security cards do not have a photo.


A Social Security card is not an ID. I don't know of any place that will accept a Social Security card as an ID. Legally, no place is allowed to request a Social Security card as an ID. It says *right on the friggin' card* that it can't be used as an ID. They may want your Social Security *Number*, but that's different.

Re:personal identity number (4, Interesting)

sm62704 (957197) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320116)

Just about everyone in the US has at least two government issued IDs: A driver's license (state issued) and a social security card (federally issued).

My Social Security card says, in bold capital letters just under the signature, "for social security and tax purposes - not for identification".

But it was issued in 1968 when I was 16, back when the only thing you needed an ID for was driving a car and buying liquor.

I've watched my freedom disappear little by little all my life. Compared to my youth, I now live in a police state [slashdot.org] .

-mcgrew
(oblig "child's garden of grass (album)":)

"Your paperss pleasse!"
"Uh, I only have a pipe, man."
"Zen you vill haff to come vith me!"

Re:personal identity number (4, Interesting)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320448)

My Social Security card says, in bold capital letters just under the signature, "for social security and tax purposes - not for identification".

Go get a new one. They don't say that anymore.

I was forced to produce a SS card when I tried to get my license in NY. A fucking blue piece of cardboard printed up by a typewriter. And I shit you not, when I asked why, the ditz at the desk told me "9/11".

Here is the ID that I did have on me at the time, all not-expired:

Drivers License "PA"
Military ID
Birth Certificate
US Passport
Bank ID
Work ID
Tax return
Home insurance
and a freaking Concealed Weapons Permit.

No, those were not sufficient. They needed that little blue piece of paper that previously said 'not to be used as identification'.

Old school SSN cards (1)

sjbe (173966) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320818)

"for social security and tax purposes - not for identification".

Go get a new one. They don't say that anymore.
Mine still does. Not that it matters of course...

I can't imagine why people think a SS card is any sort of sensible way to authenticate identity. Of all the important documents I have that one would probably be the easiest to forge.

Funny story - when my wife voted in the last presidential election she was asked for some sort of ID. So she presented her passport which should satisfy anyone right? The idiot holding the voter registration books said "no, no, you need a government issued ID." !!?!?! Thankfully the person sitting next to her wasn't such a retard and explained what a passport was. Really inspired confidence in the the election process.

Re:personal identity number (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22320170)

The concept of a drivers license card was invented because there was a need to identify who had been judged qualified to drive a vehicle. It was not designed to be used as an identification card, and because of mission creep, there are now problems. Several places in the US want to issue drivers licenses to immigrants, the reason is tied to the original purpose of the drivers license, to show that someone is qualified to drive. However, because of mission creep on the original purpose, giving out drivers licenses now means much more than it should. The solution is to disallow the use of the drivers license as a form of identification for any purpose except that which it was originally intended. If you need some kind of identification beyond that (which seems likely), get a card for that purpose.

Re:personal identity number (1)

mpe (36238) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320206)

Given the government's track record of ineptitude and maleficence - especially in the past eight years - the last thing a sane person wants is to put all of the nation's personal information into the exclusive hands of a single government entity.

Given the track record of many governments it won't stay "exclusive" for very long. It's only a matter of time before the entire database is on many laptops "stored" in plain view in many fools' cars. Or just left somewhere said fool probably shouldn't have been in the first place.

Re:personal identity number (5, Interesting)

Hoplite3 (671379) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320252)

In these times, I keep thinking how we survived the cold war against an adversary that at least had a GDP that was an appreciable fraction of our own and nuclear weapons. We didn't need ID cards to make it through that.

Now there are some mullahs in a cave halfway around the world who'd like to blow up a few buildings, and the g-men talk about how the sky is falling. We need to take drastic action to protect ourselves, they say. They're either cowards or up to something more sinister and cynical. Lately, I don't care which. I just want it to stop.

Re:personal identity number (1, Interesting)

d3ac0n (715594) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320772)

OK, two things:

1) While there may be some Mullahs in caves halfway around the world, it has also been shown beyond doubt that there are people living among us that DO wish to cause us harm. (No, I'm not going to do the legwork for you on that one, feel free to Google it.) So the concern for the safety of ordinary Americans from Islamofascists is quite real, and trying to minimize it by painting it as a far-away issue is , I think, intellectually dishonest.

HOWEVER

2) I DO NOT think that the REALID is the way to fix it. As many conservatives will remind you, ALL of the 9/11 hijackers had valid and legal identification, including state driver's licenses. So simply adding another layer of bureaucracy is no way to protect us from crazy people that want to kill us. I (along with many, many conservatives) see this like the libertarians do, as just another rights-grab by a bloated Federal Government.

Re:personal identity number (1)

randolph (2352) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320254)

Oh and by the way, Real ID requires Social Security and the state ID agencies to reconcile their records.

Re:personal identity number (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319764)

That's just it though. It is THESE UNITED STATES. Any power not specifically granted to the federal government is the power of the State. The Federal Government isn't supposed to control anything other than interstate commerce(that is why we have one type of dollar bill) and foriegn trade relations.

Sweden is one country. As designed by the Constitution the USA is 50 nations working together under one oversight government.

The other part is this. Do you really want the current USA government to have that kind of power? they are bad enough as it is.

Re:personal identity number (1, Insightful)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319830)

States' powers make little sense when people nowadays regularly grow up in one state, move to another to study, move to another to work, and perhaps move to another to retire. Furthermore, due to national broadcasting, the cultural differences among the states are significantly less than they once were. The U.S. is no longer a band of 13 competitive colonies who had to be pushed into staying in a union. It's a coherent whole, and we might as well reflect that in government.

Re:personal identity number (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22319882)

Wow, you completely missed the point.

States rights exist for the same right everyone gets to vote. It keeps things on an even keel.

Unity? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22319904)

The U.S. is no longer a band of 13 competitive colonies who had to be pushed into staying in a union

When middle Eastern oil is depleted do you really think Texas is going to share the contents of its capped oil reserves with the Yankees?

Re:Unity? (4, Informative)

Doctor_Jest (688315) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319988)

Sure. If you got the cash....

I realize you're being absurdly funny, but still...

A Federal "Real ID" stomps all over the Constitutionally protected rights of States _and_ citizens. It's been a while since the feds have done such a bangup job stomping on _that_ much liberty.

Remember, the SS# was "never to be used as a means of personal identification..." And now look where we are. The Real ID is nothing more than a power grab and a consolidation of yet more Federal power... that the Congress complied with happily. Time to take the DHS to court... and let the Supremes decide if they can usurp authority that is _NOT_ enumerated to the Federal government.

I didn't think I would see such a reading comprehension problem with our government when it comes to the Constitution. Seems clear to me what it says... they may not like it, but I don't care. It's not their position to like it... it's their position to uphold it and keep it from becoming... well... Orwell's nightmare.

Re:personal identity number (1)

Vraylle (610820) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319946)

If there should be (or you simply want) a stronger, more centralized government, then amend the Constitution to make it so, don't just ignore the "damn piece of paper" because you don't like it.

Re:personal identity number (1)

zehaeva (1136559) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320480)

The local cultures vary greatly from state to state even to this day, granted there are a lot of similarities however the general out look on life and how to live is quite different here in New York than it is in say Louisiana or Texas. For example in Texas its not considered taboo to grab your gun when you leave your house, or to execute every violent felon (a hyperbole but please bear with me) in New York Most people wouldn't think to leave their house with a gun unless they were hunting or were going to use it, and executions are non existent.

Re:personal identity number (1)

joebagodonuts (561066) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320482)

Not everyone feels as you do. I don't want the federal government to have MORE. I want to limit that power. State's power is a way of doing that. It's also a way to have policy be localized as much as possible. In my view, it helps to create that whole thing about "That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,"

The problem isn't your "personal identity number". (1)

gr3y (549124) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319992)

The separate states have had some form of identification which records the four elements of information you mentioned for years. The definition of "photo ID" is pretty standard across the nation.

The problem is that the federal government has now decided that those identification cards are no longer acceptable, and mandated a solution to the problem through the RealID Act, but provided no funding to the separate states to achieve compliance. This will require the separate states to absorb the cost of complying with the Act. It's another unfunded mandate, and one which unfairly deprives otherwise law-abiding citizens of exercising their rights under Amendment One to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Which is exactly what caused the "American Experiment" in the first place.

If the federal government would agree to fund the Real ID Act, most of the complaining from the separate states would probably stop. Everyone more or less agrees that you shouldn't be able to acquire photo identification which says you're someone you're not. There are some privacy concerns, especially since the federal government hasn't demonstrated it is able to adequately police its own use of private, non-published information, and those safeguards should be strengthened.

But having real penalties for FBI agents who violate their neighbors' privacy to find out if their neighbors make more money than them, or lose their laptops, for example, would probably cause the problem of public servants abusing, or being careless with, their position of trust and authority to go away. When the mayor of Houston supports legislation that asserts the city should be free to place a closed-circuit television in the home of any minor offender, his house should be the first house wired. When Congress supports legislation allowing the FBI to expand its biometric database to everyone in the nation, they should be the first in line for cheek swabs. When the federal government mandates "Angel ID" or some other RFID-based solution to identity, every government representative should be chipped first, like dogs, starting with the President. And any citizen should be allowed to challenge any government representative, to essentially demand that the representative demonstrate his or her compliance with the law before requiring the citizen to comply.

Re:personal identity number (1)

Slashidiot (1179447) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320074)

I also find it amazing how american people (or should I say american governments) manage to complicate things enormously. As I understand it, there should be TWO ID cards:

1) Passport. To leave the country. That's its use.
2) National ID card. For identification purposes inside the US. It must only contain data that does not compromise your identity, just name, age, a picture and a number. With this number and a national database, all your data is there.

How can you use the driver's licence as ID, what if I don't drive? I'm not entitled to have a photo ID then? Driver's licence should be used just for that: to prove that you can drive.

Being almost european (spanish, which is almost as being from north africa), I can't understand how a country as the USA is not able to manage some things right. Even in Europe, speaking different languages and having different legal systems, we manage to use the national ID all across the EU, without a problem.

Re:personal identity number (1)

IndustrialComplex (975015) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320534)

Without getting into the finer details of what is a state of the US and its powers vs that of the federal government...

You can get a non-drivers license ID. It looks almost the same as the drivers license, and serves no other purpose than to be an ID. It is much more common in cities where you don't always have to drive. But in the US, since it is almost a necessity to be able to drive to survive here, most of us just have driver's licenses.

Accounts of problems & notes on privacy in the (1)

randolph (2352) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320228)

Accounts of problems [realnightmare.org] .

Also, the USA doesn't have the privacy laws that all of Europe has; once we have a national ID, we become visible to just about every nosy commercial data broker and any reasonably efficient criminal.

This Sucks (4, Informative)

OS24Ever (245667) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319670)

Look, I know it's cool to fight the drugs, and that meth seems to be evil from what I've seen, dunno, haven't tried it.

But speaking as an asthmatic allergy sufferer, and someone who gets some really crappy colds every year making good old sudafed a bitch to find/get/procure. That new Sudafed crap elevates my heart rate by over 20 bpm and doesn't clear my head. You feel like you're ordering donkey porn when you go in and try to buy something that has it, and most vendors don't.

For the record, Aleve has a 12 hour decongestant that is the evil good old sudafed in it. After suffering for three days with every other stupid cold pill on the shelf took one of those, and was fine for 12 hours.

Of course, it was too late and I got a sinus infection so I had that joy to go through.

But this is just stupid. I'm ok with you putting it behind a counter so a meth head doesn't come in and clear the shelf, stealing it all. but the limits on the amount make it rought if you have a >3 day long cold sometimes.

Re:This Sucks (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319838)

But this is just stupid. I'm ok with you putting it behind a counter so a meth head doesn't come in and clear the shelf, stealing it all. but the limits on the amount make it rought if you have a >3 day long cold sometimes.

As a graying 29 year old I don't feel the need to show proof of anything when I buy a two or less boxes of medication that's supposed to be over the counter medication.

I realize I live in a nanny state that attempts to dictate everything we do while appearing to be liberal (yay for Minnesota) but stopping me from buying beer and liquor on Sundays and keeping that dangerous single box of Sudafed behind the counter is just dumb. If someone wants to make meth, they're going to get the stuff they need to do it and putting it behind the counter isn't going to stop anyone except those that really want to use the medication for what it's intended for.

Re:This Sucks (1)

SailorSpork (1080153) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319966)

You mean, you don't already have to sign for it? In Indiana, we already have to show an ID to get pseudoephedrine (not that phenylephrine crap that doesn't do anything). If the police suspected someone of buying a lot of the stuff to make meth, they'd go around and check the local registry's for names. When it started, records were done on paper, but now in some drug stores its digitized and put into a database to proactively track purchases and alert the police. Not a government database, national drug store chain's databases.

On a side note, Pharmacists I talk to when I sign for my decongestants say that usually the Meth makers get around the ID thing by buying over the internet from other places, but at least signing for it has cut down on the shoplifting of it, which used to be a huge problem.

Re:This Sucks (1)

OS24Ever (245667) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320262)

no I have to show ID sign for it, and can't buy more than 12 pills worth at a time, or if I did my math right three boxes in a month which was about 7 days worth of pills. I got the sinus infection before hitting the third box so I didn't run into the limit.

Re:This Sucks (1)

simpsone (830935) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320088)

At Costco here in California I can buy a box of a few hundred Sudafed (the real stuff) without any signing or any other hassles. The only change is that instead of being out on the floor it's behind a counter and you have to ask for it.

Re:This Sucks (1)

OS24Ever (245667) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320298)

Congrats, you should start selling on eBay. I'd buy.

Here we have to show ID, can't buy more than 12 pills worth at a time, and are limited to a certain number of grams. i did the math trying to figure out and with the aleve I found that worked it was 3 boxes. That is if my cold medicated sinus infected brain did the math right.

We used to buy sudafed in bulk. For my nasal cavities that stuff is mana from heaven, works every time. It was amazing when we got the 'improved' formula one. I didn't notice the box because my wife picked them up for me, but I took one, and within 30 min I was feeling worse. checking the pulse I went from my average of 72 to 95 and stayed there for about six hours. Head never cleared.

Re:This Sucks (1)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320208)

You think that's bad, try buying some Sudafed for your very young child. Your kid is cranky with a cold and you need to sign these papers to "prove" that you're not going to take the low dose sudafedrin and turn it into crystal meth. Now, I'm not knowledgeable about sudafedrin => meth production (never did it, never plan to), but I would think that it would take a whole lot of children's sudafedrin melting strips (the things that go on the tongue and melt) to make even a small amount of meth. And I don't see signing one piece of paper as being much of a deterrent to people who really want to make meth. Couldn't they just pharmacy hop until they have enough?

Entry to Federal Buildings (5, Interesting)

overshoot (39700) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319672)

Thought Experiment:
What happens if I'm summoned to a Federal Court appearance and don't have the required ID? Do I:
  • Get a pass because a Federal Judge trumps an ID requirement?
  • Get a pass from the Court because I can't be compelled to do something illegal?
  • Go to jail, go directly to jail, do not collect any sympathy?

Re:Entry to Federal Buildings (2, Informative)

rhendershot (46429) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319798)

IANAL

Go to jail. You are required to comply with the court order or summons. The court does not provide transportation nor lodging. I think it would take an unsympathetic view to your not providing your own identification, proper identification of course...

Re:Entry to Federal Buildings (3, Insightful)

necro81 (917438) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320396)

I think it would take an unsympathetic view to your not providing your own identification, proper identification of course...

There's an important distinction, however, between not having (or forgetting to bring) a driver's license or other photo ID to the courthouse, and having a perfectly valid state ID from a state that has decided not to comply with REAL ID. The individual citizen should not be penalized because he or she doesn't have access to the appropriate identification.

And, no, getting a federally-issued passport is not a solution for everyone. Only 30% of Americans have a passport (according to the Wired article in the summary). A passport's sole purpose is to allow someone to travel outside of the country - it shouldn't be a requirement to do anything within the country. It costs $100 and takes 6 weeks to get one. There should be no minimum barrier for someone to be able to petition to government in court, and certainly not a minimum barrier for someone to defend themselves in court. It's right up there with a poll tax, which has time and again been ruled unconstitutional.

Re:Entry to Federal Buildings (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320256)

None of the above.

you go directly to gitmo, with jumper cables attached to your testicles while they read to you how to survive a waterboarding.

What about NON-citizens? (4, Interesting)

Heian-794 (834234) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319682)

"requiring citizens to produce federally compliant identification before purchasing some over-the-counter medicines "

That would give non-citizens more rights than citizens, since they can hardly make it illegal for resident aliens to buy medicine. Or will they be forced to show green cards or the like? What nonsense.

Re:What about NON-citizens? (3, Interesting)

Panaqqa (927615) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319926)

I'm interested in the implications for non-citizens myself, and I don't mean resident aliens, as I don't reside in the USA. I mean visitors. I travel to America on business or leisure quite frequently, and while I don't often have to visit a federal building it is not completely unknown. And the visitor information centre mentioned in the article is something I might want to visit.

So - how do they handle me as a Canadian citizen and a visitor? There is no way I will have REAL ID, and I would prefer not to have to carry my passport everywhere I go (for obvious reasons). My guess is that the ID requirement could not really be applied to non citizens, which raises the interesting spectre of a non citizen having more rights than an American citizen from any of several states. Or perhaps the ID requirement WILL be enforced against non citizens, in which case just watch as your tourism industry evaporates almost overnight. Visitors HATE people in authority demanding "PAPERS!"

Re:What about NON-citizens? (1)

Timberwolf0122 (872207) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320126)

I'm living in Vermont on an L1B Visa and caught a cold (I know in Vermont of all places!) and I was ask to show my drivers license, so I showed the pharmacist my UK drivers license, he recorded my license number and that was that. Now how hard would it be to forge a foreign license? More to the point how hard would it be to go import a shit load of medicine in a shipping create?

Already have to show ID... (2, Informative)

EveryNickIsTaken (1054794) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319692)

I already have to show ID when I buy a product with too much Pseudoephedrine in it. It's kind of annoying when you need to show your driver's license and sign a slip for buying a big bottle of NyQuil. Is this merely a state law (I'm in NJ) or have people in other states seen it as well?

Re:Already have to show ID... (1)

duffbeer703 (177751) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319750)

Nope, it's federal. California Senator Dianne Feinstein slipped the restrictions in a bill so she could say that she was doing something about methamphetamine.

Of course now, people running meth labs are using even more dangerous materials, so it really wasn't that effective.

I find it ironic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22319704)

...when The Register posts negative stories about erosion of privacy, security, censorship and the likes when they themselves are guilty of extreme bias on their site (Heavily Anti-Apple, Anti-MS) in both initial reporting and in censoring of comments and corrections that show the bias in their stories posted to their site.

It's really not the sort of site Slashdot should be accepting submissions from if we're to get a realistic picture of the situation. A site that demonstrates extreme bias in the way The Register does about things we know are completely false makes it hard to trust things they post that we're less experienced or unable to actually find the truth behind. Put simply, I wouldn't listen to anything The Register has to say - try and find alternative, vastly more trustworthy sources of news and information.

Thankfully at least for all Slashdot's faults we're allowed to post corrections here so even if the initial story is wrong we can correct it in the comments.

Re:I find it ironic (1)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319792)

I find it ironic when a poster feels the need to grouse about the "bias" in a Register article, without even bothering to research to see if the allegations presented in the article are true.

You might want to try actually listening to the event [heritage.org] cited in the Register. The issue in question is addressed roughly 18 minutes in.

Ron Paul... (-1, Flamebait)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319708)

...spam in 5, 4,...

Re:Ron Paul... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22319752)

And you are helping how?

Re:Ron Paul... (1)

TapeCutter (624760) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320338)

Sorry, I'm an Aussie and the RP spam makes me want to vomit.

Homeland security? (5, Insightful)

unbug (1188963) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319820)

What exactly does pseudophedrine have to do with homeland security? Why do those DHS guys even think about it at all?

It was never about homeland security. (1)

Lilith's Heart-shape (1224784) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319922)

Why are you kidding yourself? It's not about homeland security and it never was. It's about making people predictable and controllable. It's about power: the people who have it want more of it, and they don't ever want to let it go.

Re:Homeland security? (4, Interesting)

The Queen (56621) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320136)

Has nothing to do with security, has everything to do with power and profit.

It's because meth is produced by the people, for the people, unlike marijuana, smack and coke which we mostly import. The gov't can't get its share of the profits on meth the way it does on other stuff, so they are coming down harder on it. The 'War on Drugs' was never about saving us from the evils of substance abuse, you know.

Course, that's just MHO. (And I don't know about other states, but here in Virginia you have to also sign a piece of paper in order to buy said medicine. It's ridiculous. Makes me try all that much harder not to get sick!)

Re:Homeland security? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22320700)

Usually these ideas are drummed up by some politician, after having what they think is a good idea. In reality it developed straight out of their ass with no reason, research, or forethought.

Behold the diocracy that plagues America. As long as we keep up the fight with vocal, and constant resistance, we might just survive it.

A test case for conservatism (4, Interesting)

hey! (33014) | more than 6 years ago | (#22319962)

Most people would consider me a liberal, although exactly how liberal depends on the current position of the pendulum. Yet it seems to me that the strongest argument for conservatism has always been this: you can't get everything you want. Yes, we'd all like the poor to have access to health care and top notch education, but if we throw money at those problems we reduce entrepreneurial incentive (or sometimes even worse: refocus it on capturing windfalls) needed to grow the economy and provide access to wealth for all.

Here we see a flip side of this argument: we'd all like to be perfectly safe, but at some point you buy the next increment of safety at the cost of something else. Are we really safer if we have a government functionary peering into all kinds of aspects of our private lives? Is Republican Party conservatism just the choice of an alternative form of government paternalism?

This kind of thing is what conservatives (and liberals) ought to be on the lookout for.

Conservatives for years have railed against the idea of a government ID ("papers, please"). Personally, I don't have a problem with a standard government issued ID, but I do understand what they're getting at. It's about the indignity of some unaccountable government flunky exerting control over your private affairs. If the growing conservative discomfort over ID standards is any measure, many conservatives have begun to realize that the government issued ID is really symbolic; it's not the ID per se, but what can be done with it.

All things being equal, an ID that is standardized, either by being issued by a single authority or whose issuance and features are controlled by a single authority, is better than an unreliable ID. The problem is that a better ID is also convenient for illegitimate purposes. Why mandate such an ID for purchasing medicine, if other than to put medicine purchases in a federal database?

And that's the rub. Conservatives are way behind on recognizing the coercive power of databases in government hands as they are ahead in recognizing the dangers of a national ID.

Re:A test case for conservatism (2)

Alexpkeaton1010 (1101915) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320282)

True conservatism advocates States Rights. Most laws (such as laws about mundane things like purchasing sinus medicine) should be determined by the State, not by the Feds. This is a major strength of the American system. America is supposed to be like a giant laboratory... a more liberal State tries a new idea, other States see how it works and adopt the good ones.

Also, please do not confuse "conservatives" with "republicans". Bush Republicanism is the unholy alliance between conservatives and evangelicals.

Re:A test case for conservatism (1)

sizzzzlerz (714878) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320438)

Also, please do not confuse "conservatives" with "republicans". Bush Republicanism is the unholy alliance between conservatives and evangelicals.


I'm squinting really hard here but darn if I can tell the difference. I don't like to make sweeping generalizations as a rule, but in this case, all I see are bush republicans all the way down. From McRomabee down to congress, they support bush policies, think torture is a good thing, and don't blink at a $3T budget.


If you know of some conservatives who aren't bush-ites, please point them out.

Re:A test case for conservatism (2, Insightful)

hey! (33014) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320576)

Also, please do not confuse "conservatives" with "republicans". Bush Republicanism is the unholy alliance between conservatives and evangelicals.


Notice I used the term "Republican Conservatism"; I am quite aware that traditional conservatives have major issues with the party.

Personally, I don't think states are inherently more trustworthy than any other level of government. In some cases, such as California, they are large enough to be their own countries. In other cases (I won't name names for professional reasons but I've seen it with my own eyes) they are thoroughly corrupt. "States Rights" only makes sense if somehow you identify yourself with the government of the state you live in. I prefer individual rights, asserted against any level of government, or even private agents.

DHS seeks to become... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22320546)

...the ONE uber-alles consolidated federal police force, supplanting all others(FBI, DEA, US Marshalls).

More jobs @ DHS (1)

Alain Williams (2972) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320004)

and promotions for those who already work there ... they would be stupid to not push for mission creep.

As for you who pay for it .....

*blink* *blink* NOW they grok "mission creep" (1)

jpellino (202698) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320090)

How many years into this nonsense and it just now dawns on them that there are multiple unintended uses for a national database of all of our picayune details?

I blame the cubicle blinders^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H walls.

That and a hyper-hypocritical admin mindset that wants to evince their anti-big gummint creed by adding a master layer with unprecedented access.

But that's just me.

What is the real problem? (1)

id09542 (635670) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320114)

I do not see where it is a national ID, what I see is where each state will have to have a standard "design" for their ID, typically a drivers license. In Illinois we already have the new style and it is tied to the state's Driver's License number. I understand why it needs to be a standard, little Suzie sales clerk may be able to spot a forged drivers license from Illinois, but would have no way to know if a drivers license from Utah was real or not if it was not standardized somehow. It is not a national ID number!!!

Just in case you're confused (1)

n3tcat (664243) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320202)

For everyone who is wondering why the federal government should not do this, please read the story that preceeds this one regarding a state attempting to legislate pi.

People who try to control too much are evil. Is it so hard to see this?

Easy solution (1)

Chrisq (894406) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320420)

Combining both posts gives the obvious solution. Let them introduce global ID numbers

Then get your state to legislate that your ID is just the first digit.

DHS Has Outlived Its Usefullness (5, Insightful)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320234)

And in record time for a federal agency. I think its creation was a mistake and its continued existence a money-sucking waste of resources. Instead of focusing on terrorism they've started to put their greasy fingers into all kinds of areas not related to what's supposed to be their core mission.

Unless someone can relate cold medicine and terrorism. If we've got this terrorism thing whipped that DHS has so much time on their hands, then scale back their budget.

We have the FBI for domestic terrorism, the CIA for overseas operations...they were getting the job done before 9-11. Just as a reminder, the problem wasn't that we didn't know about the terrorists before 9-11, the problem was we didn't act on what we knew. And we knew without massive, illegal wiretapping of Americans, without the Patriot Act, without waterboarding, secret prisons, GITMO and all the other retarded things we've done out of fear since then.

Re:DHS Has Outlived Its Usefullness (1)

joebagodonuts (561066) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320598)

It has given a lot of people jobs. Think of it as public works. "Not what it's intended for" you say? How do you know?

Yup (1)

tgd (2822) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320246)

Still proud to live in New Hampshire.

Which of the Presidential candidates . . . (1)

moeinvt (851793) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320368)

. . . are actually speaking out AGAINST the whole nightmare scenario of Real ID?

Gee, I wonder?

The real mission-creep issue: Immigration (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 6 years ago | (#22320646)

The thing that's going to turn REAL ID from just another card that you may carry if you want to into a mandatory document, required to be presented on demand to any government official (and probably lots of non-officials), is illegal immigration.

There's a large portion of this country that's willing to give up all sorts of rights if it'll let us keep those damned illegals out. Right now they're largely fixated on border protection, the 700-mile fence and all that. At some point, though, they're going to realize that a tiny percentage of illegals get in by sneaking across the border, and the fence and the guards aren't going to stop much of that small group anyway. At that point, they'll realize that the only way to get rid of the illegals is by having lots of internal controls and checkpoints verifying the citizenship or legal resident status of everyone.

Buses, airplanes and trains will be key checkpoints, but the roads will have to be covered as well, in an attempt to make all movement by illegal aliens impossible [1]. Employers will also have to check, and may even have to request a real-time ID check to a national database of legal residents (this is a proposal that is on the table even without REAL ID). Hospitals are another good target, because most seriously injured people will choose to get medical help even if it means being deported. Schools will be required to check the identity and status of children who enroll.

All of this together will make it nearly impossible for illegal aliens to live and work in the US, but at the expense of turning us into a society that expects to show electronically-verified ID on a daily basis, making it a simple matter to collect all of the verifications into a central database. The result will be that the government will have a detailed record of our movements and actions, ready to be cross-referenced with private sector databases (credit cards, etc.) to provide an intimate view of our lives.

Oh, and expect the ACLU to ensure that you can't be passed over at the checkpoints just because you're white and have an American accent, either. The far right will make sure the checkpoints are installed and manned, and the far left will make sure that they apply equally to everyone.

The coming War on Illegal Immigration is going to make the civil rights impacts of the War on Drugs and the War on Terror look like nothing, unless we start fighting back.

[1] This, by the way, is how Mexico manages their problem with illegal immigrants from Nicaragua, Honduras, etc. I spent a couple of years in southern Mexico and got stopped to have my papers checked several times. Even got detained for a few hours once because I didn't happen to have my visa with me.

When... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22320748)

Are people going to wake the fuck up and see what the "War On Drugs" is doing to our country? It does jack shit to stop people from using drugs, but it fills our prisons and restricts our freedom.

Drugs abuse should be treated as a sickness, not a crime.
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