Once more into the breach…

Neil’s back with another vain attempt to sell us an ID card or two, so…

1. ID cards are good in principle. NO2ID have no objections in principle to a ID card scheme, indeed they admit there are potential benefits to an ID scheme. Maybe they should change their name to ‘NO to the govt’s current proposals for ID’ to reflect their position more accurately.

There are potential benefits to having a secure system of verifying identity, no of which outweigh the detailed and precise objections raised regarding the Identity Cards Bill and the the specific proposals being brought forward by government.

Neil, we are long past the point of debating the principles of ID cards. There is a Bill before parliament which has completed all it stages in the House of Commons and which awaits only its final stage; a third reading debate in the Lords, before passing into law – unless of course the Lords either rejects the Bill outright or holds out for amendments that the government refuse to accept, in which case the Bill goes back to square one in the Commons but with the Parliament Act as backup should the Commons wish to impose its will on the Lords.

No amount of debate or argument on the principles of ID cards, at this stage, will change the fact that is a poorly drafted piece of legislation, one which changes at a stroke the very nature of the relationship between the citizen and the state, which provides for 61 separate powers for the Home Secretary to amend the scheme by secondary legislation. Nor will it change the fact that the government has failed, in the face of detailed, specific and verifiable objections to its proposals, to offer any response other than ‘we don’t accept your argument’.

I appreciate your efforts to put detailed counter arguments to those of us who have argued forcefully against this bill but don’t you think this is something that the government should have been doing? And don’t you also think that their failure to debate the issues with us and make any effort at all to respond to criticisms and concerns with detailed, reasoned argument says something about the government’s real case for ID cards; i.e. that they don’t have one.

How, in what is supposed to be a democratic society, is it acceptable for a government to hold a position where, in the face of detailed, logical and reasoned and, for the most part, expert argument in opposition to a proposal their sole response is to say:

“We’re right. You’re wrong. Fuck you!

  • ID cards – Lord(s) save us
    See also this lengthy but important refutation of some of the arguments in favour of ID cards at Talk Politics.

  • Katherine

    Well said. Thank you. ID cards may be compulsory in 2013, but I for one will not be carrying one.

  • I’ve posted a reply to this on my blog.