This “stopping people for papers” lark is the anteroom to the introduction of ID cards. The cards will be the content of your mobile phone.
“Stopping people for papers” sounds a bit like tinpot dictatorships, so first read this and then read this – before judging for yourself how tinpot the UK is getting.
Anyhow, it’s pretty self-evident that people are currently being stopped on British buses and commutes in general, and are being asked for evidence of their identity using a crude form of ethnic profiling. So far, so bad – or good, if you are of such an inclination.
Now to the latter two parts of the tweet: firstly, that the Home Office is planning to introduce ID cards; secondly, that they will consist of the content of your mobile phone. Thesestories should help bring us all up to speed. As I pointed out in a couple of previousposts back in 2012, the government isn’t only planning to introduce ID cards, it’s also planning for them to be privatised ones:
So no longer will it be necessary to battle the libertarian instincts of so many Daily Mail-reading Middle Englanders. By simply passing legislation designed, according to its proponents, to fight organised crime and terrorism conducted on the Internet, the function creep Meacher mentioned in his piece will be enabled from a design-of-concept point of view into the laws themselves to allow them to also create the figure of virtual ID cards.
For you have already bought and paid for an identity card: it’s called a mobile phone; it costs you maybe £400 over a two-year period; its functionality, call-centre provision and contractual relationship is already outsourced to a private provider; and it will allow governments everywhere – but in particular here in Britain – to spy on, collate and structure all your most personal information as individual profiles are legally created about every single voter in the country.
This is ID-card paradise for entirely amoral command-and-control agendas.
Or, for the rest of us, a civil-liberty hell on Planet Earth.
And all this before we heard of Prism, Mastering the Internet and XKeyscore.
It all comes together, doesn’t it? First, the street-located technology to download (or steal, depending on your point of view) the content of your mobile phone in minutes; second, its trialling and employment in airports and other points of entry into the UK; third, the inevitable sop to private-industry sponsors galore looking to get their grasping hands on yet another potential cash-cow – at the clear expense, of course, of citizen privacy; and fourth, its primary application on “people of colour” and other individuals we decide, out of unhappy cowardice, we would be better off not defending for the moment.
But as we’ve already learned from the past couple of years of Coalition government, what the Tories decide to do the weakest in society very soon gets applied to a much broader constituency. The logic of these actions is ultimately irreversible: once done to the downtrodden and “illegal”, such regimes, out of massive hubris, end up extending them to everyone else.
Naturally, I may be wrong. I may be wrong about all the above. This may not be part of some concerted plan to introduce privatised ID cards by the backdoor, and through the mechanism of using them on illegal immigration first.
But if I am wrong – and I’d be more than happy to print a refutation on these pages which demonstrated that I was completely out of my trolley – what other explanation of all the aforementioned stories explains them as clearly as my thesis?
You tell me. Your turn now. Please put my mind at rest.