Friday, 17 July 2009

NO2ID Update

++ NO2ID Supporters' Newsletter No. 127 - 16th July 2009 ++

*Contacting us:* Call or email the office - 020-7793-4005 or
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The bad news is that the ID scheme is proceeding with plan A as if
nothing had happened, and government departments everywhere are pushing
forward with ever-madder schemes for database government. The
regulations for the basic structure of the National Identity Register
were forced through - it was not a formality though, so thanks to all
who wrote against them. Data-sharing has never been more fashionable in

The good news is that slowly, slowly, campaigning is starting to make a
difference. There are very promising signs of understanding emerging
among some think tanks and on the Opposition front benches. Recently the
influential Centre for Policy Studies published a pamphlet called "It's
Ours: why we, not goverment, must own our data". And on Wednesday 15th
July Damian Green MP gave a speech there explicitly attacking
'Transformational Government' and the database state.

What NO2ID has been doing for the last 5 years is working. We need to
keep on educating the media, politicians and public, keep the pressure
up on the Government - and the Opposition if they become the government
- and stick to our principles. Respect for privacy could become the
orthodoxy. That's the good news.

The bad news is there is a long way to go before it is, and we all have
a responsibility to spread the word till then.


  1. The story of the ID card scheme is practically a microcosm of what passes for a national security vs. civil liberties debate in this country. The stated reasons for having ID cards have no basis in fact, none at all - the police are already in the habit of arresting people who don't volunteer their identify (by adopting the the wonderfully closed-circuit logic that it's 'suspicious' of someone not to do so) so identity can be forcibly established without good cause even as things stand - terrorists can plant bombs and blow themselves up just as easily with or without an ID card in their pocket.

    Terrorism in Britain is a strictly increasing function of aggressive foreign policy and lax immigration policy (motive and opportunity) - Labour is as complicit in the London bombings as the young men who supposedly, not that there is any worthwhile evidence to support the assertion, blew themselves up on 7/7.

  2. Labour doesn't do civil liberties. Mainly because its members collectively seem incapable of comprehending the concept and the philosophy of liberal democracy from which it grows. Smart ID cards are as you brilliantly say a 'microcosm' of the debate. But that debate is deeper than most appear to realise: ultimately, it's about who comes first - the state or the individual?

    We know which side of that argument British socialists inhabit. The ID card, state security over individual privacy (security) side.

    They must be defeated because the stakes haven't this high since the defeat of that other terrible thought disease: national socialism.

    I'm don't think I'm generally given to hysteria, BHS. I wouldn't say it if I didn't believe it was true, but surely we now have enough historical examples of the parlous, familiar political pattern that reveals a society is heading towards tyrrany to cry out the warning this time around.

    We are heading towards tyrrany in this country. We can stop it. We start with the real threat to liberty in Britain today, which is not, as you rightly say, terrorist criminals inspired by British foreign policy, but the government that launched the policy. These are very dangerous times for this country, but that has nothing to do with the 2005 bombings and everything to do with political and social decadence.

    Labour should not only be kicked out of power, it should be destroyed for what its done. If the Liberals had any nous, they would agree and help the Tories dish out the retribution. Fat chance!

  3. Absolutely Mr Den, state vs. individual at the root of it all; the most serious and significant debate a nation can have about itself, yet the common terms of references are no better than a malicious nonsense poem.

    'New' Labour have come a long way since since they first took power; the party that, as Richard Shepherd rightly pointed out, brought us FOI, could hardly have strayed any further from that initial demonstration of principle if they'd tried (and they have tried, I believe, very hard indeed).

    Not given to hysteria either (not by habit, at any rate). But, that said, there is a definite pattern and structure to how, when, and by whome, questions are answered or not answered - one does wonder.

    "It is poor civic hygiene to install technologies that could someday facilitate a police state" (there are some other nice quotes from the same bloke as well).

    In summary: bastards!



Any thoughts?