I know when I travel to Asia, South America, or Europe, I need to present my passport at all hotels I stay at
Sounds like you've never travelled to Asia, South America or Europe... Because you only use your passport as a method of ID at hotels. A Hotel needs to know that you are the person you claim to be. I travel to a few places in SE Asia on a regular basis. They know who I am and dont bother asking for ID any more. So much so I've even got a rapport with a few customs officers at Perth.
Also, I was also required to present ID at every US hotel I stayed at. The most convenient form is the Passport as they're fairly standard from country to country. I had more than a few US bartenders squint at my Western Australian drivers license for a while before they served me.
When I worked in Belgium, Chile and China, I had to register with the Government and provide the local police station with my information
When I travel to the United States, I have to Register with the Electronic System for Travel Authorisation in order to board a flight to the US. No ESTA, no entry.
It costs about $4 and there are a variety of middlemen who charge upwards of $20 to do the same thing (so make sure you go to the DHS website). This form asks for a variety of information, not just for ID purposes, but personal questions as well (like "Do you have gonorrhoea") feel free to go through it yourself. At least they've stopped asking if I'm a Nazi.
Also when I was coming back to the US from South America a few years back I had to provide proof of an outgoing flight and my hotel prior to being permitted to board a flight in Panama.
I don't think that tourists need to provide their passports at hotels, nor do visa holders need to register with the local police station.
Next time, stop writing after "think".
As an Australian traveller, the US is an oddity. There are few places in the world where I need to fill in an application form to visit.