(For those who are unaware Pressdram is the publisher/company name of Private Eye, a long running UK satirical magazine which is often sued and Arkell V Pressdram is frequently referred to in its pages)
I keep thinking of SCO v Novell for some reason, can't think why...
Mostly I only buy from a few sites or small amounts via paypal (which I haven't confirmed/whatever so the exposure is low)
The real worry would have been elecronic voting - use your ID card to vote and have it recorded in a database for future reference: "Sorry officer, what did I do wrong? Well, yes I did vote Green when I was 20....."
So they are getting rid of the database too, which is the more important thing, but the combination of card and database was the really bad news.
I don't understand the privacy issue. I like the lib dems, I'm glad they are in power, and I think ID cards are expensive - but I don't understand why this is such a massive issue for so many people. I'm not afraid of CCTV and I'm not afraid of ID cards. I can't say I'm an expert in the issues (the wiki article is pretty lame, for example), so please feel free to educate me.
I realised your lack of expertise (or thought) from the rest of your post. As for educating you, I'm sure others will help me out here...
The reason I want ID cards, is not really for ID cards. I want my identity to be electronic, to make real world transactions, authentication etc as easy as internet authentication. On the internet I can access any site and make any payments with just a username and password. In the real world there are a bunch of ass backwards tools - coins, keys, access cards, phone sim cards and other bull. One of the reasons I can't shed this crap is because of "privacy concerns", which I don't worry about. For example, I share almost all of my personal information with google - and I don't worry about them trying to misuse it. I also share all of my wealth with the Bank Of England - I don't worry about them either. Germany also has a system of ID cards, which works.
You're doing better than me, I need several userids and passwords - Verrified by Visa and the Mastercard equivalents or paypal spring to mind. And please tell me that you really expect to replace coins and keys with an ID card. These things would soon have been cloned you realise. And how are you going to get mulinational phone companies to use a national ID card as a sim? And how often do you need to worry about your sim card(s)? As you don't have any privacy concerns please tell us you name, d.o.b. address and bank account details - or did you miss Jeremy Clarksons little cock up by doing this? The Bank Of England doesn't have all my wealth, no one institution does. Does Germany also have the Big Brother database that was going to go with these useless cards?
The reason I want CCTV is because it should make solving crime a lot easier. Combine it with face recognition and you can build a map of where people go and when. Add datamining, and perhaps you can start to track down drug dealers, burglars, rapists, etc. It starts to get very difficult to commit the really nasty crimes that still happen (although not nearly as much as people think)
They have a miserably small effect on crime solving at present, and I'm sure the rest would have been great for the Staasi. You should consider the possible unintended conseauences as well as the stated aim. The fact that it is possible to identify how anybody voted in UK General Elections also makes me unhappy, or did you not realise that the ballot papers are traceable?
The best/most frequent arguments against seem to me to be that it would give a corrupt government the power to identify certain elements of society, who could then be, say, put in camps, and it would give police power which they could use to victimise certain groups
The trouble is these things normally tend to happen, laws get applied more loosely than may have been intended: 'sus', 'stop and search'. and the unlwaful harrasing of phorographers (stretching some 'anti-terror' legislation). Someone one descibed Jack Straw (as Home Secretary) as too right wing for Mrs Thatchers government. Another oft-quoted saying is that Labour do what the Police tell them and the Tories tell the Police what to do. Look at the number of laws passed in the last 13 years which can result in imprisonment and read the 'Great Repeal' bill just announced - and be grateful we know have a Con/Dem coalition. I hope they are looking at Detention Orders too.
From a purely personal standpoint I don't see these things happening in Britain. The progress of Nazi Germany towards the holocaust was a step by step progression, a series of sets of laws defined the Jews as a separate group and began isolating them. Britain has adopted human rights conventions which make this (I think) unconstitutional. The only "warning sign" I heard of with CCTV was that an operator was using a camera to spy on a woman in her bedroom. That's not something which is hard to fix, and it doesn't scare me.
It won't be unconstitutional without a written constitution, it would probably be illegal though. Who watches the watchers? Try Googling for 'sousveillance' or looking into some of Mark Thomas stuff - there was a brilliant radio show where he was highlighting the absurdity of the Labour Governents legislation on demonstrating in Westminster where he got permits from the police (as required) for a large number of different demos on the same day in slightly different places, including one to try and sack the police Superintendent in charge of permits - who thought the whole thing was brilliant. Mark Thomas also wrote a book on the arms trade and supplying regimes with the means to suppress and torture dissidents called "As Used On The Famous Nelson Mandela", and has done lots of interesting TV stuff too. Thomas and I are at opposite(ish) ends of the politial spectrum, I'd label him as a raving lefty and I'm a liberal conservative but I agree with him on most of what he campaigns about - civil liberties, freedom, safety and so on.
Comments should be helpful but always treated with caution, even why comments can get out of date...
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