Identity cards introduced for those foreign Johnnies, not you

DEPARTMENT OF CONTRACTING, Pfi, Thursday (NNN) — The Home Office today unveiled the new British identity card, to be issued to non-EU citizens in place of visas. “This is vitally important,” said the Home Secretary, Jacqui Smith. “LOOK! TERRORISTS!”

The card bears the subject’s picture, name, date of birth, visa status, working status, place of birth, gender, mother’s maiden name, favourite TV show and football team and preferences in pornography. The biometric details will be the subject’s middle fingerprints. An RFID transponder and smart card chip will aid in the efficient reading and distribution of the subject’s details.

UK Loyalty CardThe card will be compulsory for foreign nationals. All terrorists and illegal immigrants will be required to obtain one and show it to policemen, council officials or dog catchers on request. From 2009, cards will be issued to new workers at airports, as forcing them upon existing staff may cause everyone to quit.

“The card evokes the fundamentally British nature of identity cards,” said Ms Smith, “as shown by the EU load of bull and stars and the absence of the words ‘Britain,’ ‘United Kingdom’ or similar. It’s the first UK identity card since the Second World War, so will help us all pull together in that jolly good old Blitz spirit.”

“We wholeheartedly support this move, for the good of Britain,” said Nick Hitler (no relation) of the British National Party. Reports that the BNP had put out a bounty on a “lost” data disk listing the names and addresses of every immigrant in the country are unconfirmed.

Ministers hope to roll out the scheme to everyone in the country by 2011, since they do not anticipate being summarily ejected from Parliament in the 2010 elections. In any case, EDS and Capita will still be paid.

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2 thoughts on “Identity cards introduced for those foreign Johnnies, not you”

  1. Your report does satirically note the downsides to the scheme but look at Germany where ID cards have been the norm for so long that people are able to leave their passports behind and use their ID cards for just about everything.

    Your argument seems to be based on the premise that we should be able to obtain services on the basis that we are who we say we are. I think that’s the real argument here, quite frankly the terrorism argument is irrelevant – terrorists will not be thwarted by ID cards or any other form of administration we throw at them.

    Personally, I think it’s about convenience. When you want to withdraw money from an ATM in the UK, you identify yourself with a plastic card and PIN. Apply for a bank account and you need God knows how many forms of ID. I’d love to have a card that did all this for me.

    Do I think it’s an infringement of my liberties? well maybe. But no more than the fact I need to produce a drivers license if the police stop me whilst driving my car.

    There is of course the issue of data security, and there have been some well documented cases recently. Crapita have lost contracts on this (though maybe the government should punish them some more!) as have the lovely consultants Accidenture. A positive effect of this is that firms dealing with personal data have heightened security going forward, as they know that any blunders will be ruthlessly persued by the press – who are hardly likely to be cowed by the introduction of ID cards.

    As for Liberty – who you didn’t mention – aren’t they just the “National Union of Criminals annoyed that they might not get away with it”?

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