ID Card scheme banking on 28 million volunteers
Good luck with that
Government claims that the ID Card scheme will be self-financing are "completely deluded", the Tories have claimed today.
Shadow home secretary Chris Grayling launched the attack as the Home Office released its twice-yearly estimates on the multibillion-pound project's cost to the Exchequer.
His opposite number on the government benches, Alan Johnson, claimed that voluntary take-up will cover the £835m it is estimated the ID Cards themselves will cost.
The cards are expected to cost the public £30 each, so on the Home Secretary's reckoning, 28 million people - almost half the population of the UK - will come forward.
"If Alan Johnson seriously thinks that nearly half the adult population is going to voluntarily pay for ID cards out of their own pocket then he is completely deluded," said Grayling.
"It is time the government realised this whole scheme is a white elephant and it should be scrapped immediately."
The Tories are committed to scrapping ID cards and the accompanying National Identity Register (NIR).
The Home Office now estimates the total cost of its identity plans, which also include a commitment to biometric passports, will be £4.6bn. The figure is slightly down on six months ago.
Johnson has ruled out making ID Cards compulsory. So far just 2,000 have been convinced to join the scheme in a trial in Manchester. ®
Firstly I agree that the notion that 28 million people will just volunteer to pay for an ID card is almost hilarious in it's naievity.
But as we begin to understand that
1) The ACPO is still fighting to retain the DNA of the 4 million-odd UK citizens it's already collected,
2) That the ACPO is also routinely collecting and storing surveillance, intelligence and images of people attending meetings, protests and political rallys,
3) That GCHQ is looking to intercept & store all comms, web use, emails and phone calls and share that across the whole of Europe as requested by the EU
4) The the Independant Safeguarding Authority is (according to today's press) now pushing hard to extend thier safeguarding requests out beyond normal jobs involving working with children to what appears to as much of the population as they can bully into it (note the sinister quote today about 'you might find it easier to tender for contracts regardless if you can prove all your staff have been checked)
5) That the Government is still allowing hundreds and hundreds or public bodies intercept and surveillance powers under RIPA, and is developing the ability to share all collected information across all Government bodies
6) That regardless of the right/wrogns of the ID card there is no plan to dismantle the National Information Register which underpins it on the grounds that it will be used for biometric passports - and that the Tories have avoided a commitment to kill the NIR off as well.
7) That the scope of other data collection (e.g. Police ANPR) is being widened and expanded without reference to parliamentary approval.
One has to ask - what is the point of the ID card anymore anyway? The Government is already collecting shitloads of information on all of us, and GCHQ is already processing it and analysing it !
The Government already knows who most of the troublemakers in the UK are. It knows where we live, who we have in out phone books, tracks our travel and movements via techs such as mobile phone trangulation.
There's almost no point in arguing about the ID Card - Labour has already set up most of the the mechanisms required for total state surveillance. We're already there....
funny old game...
Politics... if I remember rightly the Conservatives floated ID cards back in 1994 (not quite sure about the year) and Labour objected.
@ Richard Wharram
In the main, MPs (on all sides) know little about the details of the scheme. Your MP is lying to you because a) that's Labour's party line, b) she's been lied to, c) she doesn't know anything about it, and d) she doesn't care. I've written stacks of letters to my (Labour) MP about it - all I get in response is stock letters, usually 3 months out of date, that have been issued by the Home Office in reply to *any* question about ID cards/biometrics. When the ID Cards Bill was going through the Commons, there were very few MPs in the chamber actually debating it (and even then the standard of debate was very poor) - but when it came to the vote, the lobby miraculously filled with MPs who had been told to vote for it. They didn't know/care what was in the Bill, they'd just been told to vote for it. That's how laws get passed in this country.