Labour still pissing on civil liberties — and pissing our money into pointless projects

Well, the Identity Cards Bill 2005–6 is out. I’m very pleased with myself: I managed to analyse all the differences between the new and old versions in only a 90-minute lunch break! It’s not very different from the previous versions: a couple of minor improvements, a couple of minor oddities that are prolly there so they can look magnanimous by conceding them at Third Reading.

There’s still no substantive improvements, though; our major concerns are still there. And the Home Office’s press briefing is a masterpiece of sophistry and disinformation. I was gonna shred it on here this evening, but I got a bit taken in by watching the Reds win the UEFA Cup on Sky Sports earlier (congrats to any Liverpool fans out there). The Prime Minister’s Official Spokesman uttered some rather misleading statements, too.

And they’ve upped the costs again; the new estimate for the cost of a passport is £93,– (rather than £85,–). It still won’t cover it, of course.

On the plus side, the Tories have rediscovered their spine (see Tories; Teg) and joined the Lib Dems in having some principles, at last. And, as well as trials showing the biometrics don’t work (which we already knew), there was a fantastic piece on ID cards and biometrics by Andrew Gilligan in the Evening Standard on Monday. He’s certainly done his research (though, frankly, half of it could have come straight out of my initial submission to the Home Office back in January 2003. But he explains very well, in non-technical terms, why iris and fingerprint biometrics won’t make the system more secure and, indeed, the scheme will make people less secure, not more. And all for billions of pounds that we could spend on better things.

I do have a handful of other bits and pieces I wanted to post, but they can wait until the weekend, I think; something tells me that I’ll spend much of Saturday being hungover at the PC, whilst is here…  ;o)

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Ymatebwch

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