real_id.jpgIt's not just the population of the UK that faces the prospect of their private details being (mis)handled by the state machinery. Our American cousins are being harassed [3] into accepting REAL ID, a standardization of driving licenses across the United States and the creation of an interlinked database with access enabled for all those who work for the various levels of all government within the US. In other words: a national identity card.

The recent pronouncements [4] from the Department of Homeland Security make it very clear that unless certain actions are undertaken then access to services will be withdrawn. States have to apply for a waiver so that they can seek more time to comply with this unnecessary piece of tacked-on [5] legislation from 2005. If States don't, then their residents will find themselves holding valid drivers licenses but unable to access federal services or, more importantly to the majority of Americans, to use their licenses' as identity when flying. The DHS will ensure that their employees will persecute any travellers who choose not to sign up to REAL ID.

If you give the keys of a brewery to an alcoholic there will be trouble, and with a government drunk on power there can only be trouble in store for Americans. As we Brits have clearly seen over the past 12 months the state is utterly useless when it comes to handling anything involving our private details is . Time after time they've lost documents, disks and laptops, compromising the personal data of their citizens. Yet if we hope to have any day-to-day functionality then we have to comply with crass legislation involving disclosure of more and more of our details.

Here's hoping that enough States stand up to this outrageous piece of legislation and protect their citizens from the overbearing federal government. The ACLU’s page can be found here: www.realnightmare.org [6].