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Real ID Act Poses Technical Challenges 296

Posted by Zonk
from the sketchy-very-sketchy dept.
segphault writes "Ars Technica has an article about some of the financial and technological challenges associated with implementing the Real ID Act." From the article: "Opposed by more than 600 independent organizations (including the National Governors Association) and hidden in the depths of a military spending bill in order to make passage easier, the Real ID Act has received heavy criticism from concerned citizens and state government agencies. Despite the fact that relatively sound and effective improvements to driver's license security had already been implemented as part of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act, the federal government felt that it was necessary to go well beyond the recommendations of the 9/11 Comission Report by passing a costly and invasive law."
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Real ID Act Poses Technical Challenges

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  • New acronym (Score:3, Funny)

    by Orrin Bloquy (898571) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:14PM (#14467560) Journal
    Unified
    Federal
    Identification
    Act?
    • Re:New acronym (Score:3, Insightful)

      by OneOver137 (674481)
      doubleplus ungood, comrade!
    • Re:New acronym (Score:2, Interesting)

      by GmAz (916505)
      I have several friends from the middle east. They are all disgusted how their own people are acting and are glad they don't live there. And what definition are they using for people that we need to be protected from. Certain names or racial backgrounds? Guess what, i am half italian and my dad is full italian. Does this mean we should be watch and not considered 'safe people' since the leader of Italy fought along side Nazi Germany? How about germans as a whole? Should we consider them all Nazi's? M
    • by iceburn (137875)
      In Soviet Russia, federal government identifies YOU. Um, wait... You identify federal government? Which one is the backwards one?
  • Wrong? (Score:2, Funny)

    by Elenthalion (854567)
    Why is it wrong for our government to be able to know which of us to protect and who to protect us from?
    • Re:Wrong? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by miskatonic alumnus (668722) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:32PM (#14467726)
      Yeah. It's a good thing that bad guys have no way to obtain official ID.
      • Also ... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by khasim (1285) <brandioch.conner@gmail.com> on Friday January 13, 2006 @06:28PM (#14468163)
        It's a good thing that bad guys would never get a job at the agency handling all that information and get access to those databases.
        • It's a good thing that bad guys would never get a job at the agency handling all that information and get access to those databases.

          The bad guys will have NO problem getting it. This is a program the individual states have to implement without being given any money with which to do it. Sort of like cutting the legs off a frog and saying "Jump, frog, jump." It'll be outsourced and either India or China will p0wn you.

    • Re:Wrong? (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Jonar (945773)
      I'll Quote Ben Franklin on this one!

      "They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."
      Ben Franklin
    • Re:Wrong? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Digital Vomit (891734)
      You know full well that's not the reason people get upset about stuff like this. It is frightening that you were modded "Insightful".
    • Re:Wrong? (Score:3, Interesting)

      by IAAP (937607)
      Why is it wrong for our government to be able to know which of us to protect and who to protect us from?

      You're absolutely right! And when I'm elected, you'll be the first on the list of people that we need protection from. Why? Because I didn't like what you said.

      See, it's that simple. You'd be an enemy of the state under my regime.

      You know, I have Arab friends and acquaintances, but everytime I email them or whatever, I'm concerned about whose looking. Maybe I'm paranoid, but when innocent people are

      • Re:Wrong? (Score:2, Funny)

        by Amouth (879122)
        the second you said carying flour.. i though "in condoms?" and sure enough that is where your link goes.. you have to wonder though.

        but to be on topic i fully agree.. every day i am worried about the US i just don't know what to do anymore other than hide.

        personaly i would like to see someone do a MST3K version of W's speaches.. then i might watch them
    • Re:Wrong? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by ch-chuck (9622) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:47PM (#14467856) Homepage
      That reminds me of this quote from Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn:

      "If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?"

      • Re:Wrong? (Score:2, Insightful)

        by monopole (44023)
        Who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?

        Dick Cheney has had how many heart operations and how many implants?

        Although personally I think he is trying to get rid of the good part.
    • Re:Wrong? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by wsherman (154283) * on Friday January 13, 2006 @06:22PM (#14468122)
      Why is it wrong for our government to be able to know which of us to protect and who to protect us from?

      Not so long ago, I moved from Michigan to California because of the weather and because the job opportunities in California were a better fit for my training (bio-tech). Basically, I just decided that I wanted to live in California and I moved there. Eventually I had to get a California driver's license and the California DMV is understaffed, inefficient and bureaucratic but on the whole it was an easy process.

      The assumption seemed to be that whatever reasons I had for wanting to live in California were valid reasons. I didn't have to fill out endless paperwork proving that I thought that the State of California had a superior form of government or that I was of desirable minority status or that I would not be a drain on the state's resources or that I was favorably disposed toward the people of California or anything.

      Furthermore, I wasn't stopped at the border of California to have all my possessions inspected for drugs or bombs. I didn't even have to stop at the California border to prove my identity and that I wasn't on some terrorist watch list.

      Now, if California did carefully control its borders and if it carefully screened people to determine who was allowed to live in California then that would probably lead to at least a small decrease in crime and other social problems.

      Personally, though, I'm glad I wasn't stopped at the California border and I'm glad I didn't have to prove to some California bureaucrat that I had the right reasons for moving to California. But that's just me. I personally value individual freedom more than the incremental increase in safety.

      In fact, I would go even further and say that I would like to live in a world where anyone can live where ever they want and cross any border without restriction. The United States would probably see an increase in terrorism (more large buildings getting knocked down, etc.) but I would personally be willing to accept that in exchange for the freedom to travel and live anywhere in the world without government interference.

      Obviously if every border in the world was opened all at once that could create some problems but there is no reason the United States couldn't open its borders gradually: first Canada, then Mexico, etc. Some people think that closing the borders protects US jobs but the reality is that, since corporations can cross borders with ease, if the cheap workers don't come to the corporations then the corporations will go to the cheap workers with the same loss of US jobs. Furthermore, most of the people in the world have never even used a telephone and it will be a long time before they have the resources for the intercontinental travel that it would take to get them to the USA.

      Anyway, there really isn't a right answer to how controlling a government should be. It just depends where the people's values are. Each level of government control will results in certain levels of freedom and certain levels of security. Sometimes there is a trade off between freedom and security and sometimes there isn't. When there is a trade off, the people need to decide which is more important to them.

  • Real ID (Score:5, Informative)

    by Hatta (162192) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:19PM (#14467598) Journal
    The 9/11 terrorists all had valid IDs. What's to stop the next batch of terrorists from getting valid Real IDs?
    • They apparently also had multiple 'valid' ID's each. Presumably, the RealID would attempt to prevent this from happening. Whether it actually works or not is a different story.
      • Re:Real ID (Score:5, Funny)

        by SQLz (564901) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:30PM (#14467713) Homepage Journal
        Yes, if you put 2 Real IDs in your wallet, one will explode, killing a terrorist.
      • At one time, I had three valid, legal driver's licenses, all issued by the State of Texas.

        First was the regular driver's license.

        Then, when I got a commercial license, the commercial license was issued in addition to my regular driver's license not in place of it. That is in spite of the fact that the commercial license covered everything a regular license covered.

        Then when I got a chauffeur's license, instead of replacing the two cards I had, they issued an additional driver's license.

        That ended when I tu
        • Presumably all in the name of "Eric Smith". The problem comes in when you have a Maryland license for Joe Smith, a Texas license for Jim Taylor, and a Florida License for John Jones.
    • Re:Real ID (Score:5, Funny)

      by Control Group (105494) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:27PM (#14467689) Homepage
      Please don't confuse the issue with your "facts" and your "logic."

      IF WE DON'T HAVE REAL IDs, THE TERRORISTS HAVE WONfnord
    • Re:Real ID (Score:5, Insightful)

      by rob_squared (821479) <rob&rob-squared,com> on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:33PM (#14467731)
      Nothing. It's similiar to gun legislation or Microsoft product activation. If you want it, you're going to get it. It only hurts law abiding people.

      Also, I think we should all take a moment to cross our fingers and hope that this new fangled thing called "common sense" will really catch on with the general public.
    • Nothing, but law enforcement officials seem to feel better when they know the identity of the people who are about to kill them.
    • by dbIII (701233) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:47PM (#14467846)
      The 9/11 terrorists all had valid IDs.
      911 is the excuse and not the reason - opportunists have been using it to push their own agendas for some time worldwide. For a blantant example, consider a small group called the "Neo-cons" that has been bleating "finish Iraq" for years that got the go ahead after a more relevant military action in Afganistan. Consider that torture is not only considered justifiable by the USA but appears to be a frequently carried out process (although outsourced to deny responisbility).

      Also consider the wide variety of untested silicon snake oil being sold (eg. face recoginition doesn't work properly in the lab yet) by people making a buck out of a lot of dead people in New York. This is what you'll see again in the scramble to get methods to implement this ID system quickly - but it will all be for nothing if your local video library insists on using this ID for their records thus making it possible for others to use your ID for any purpose they wish.

    • Re:Real ID (Score:3, Insightful)

      by rolfwind (528248)

      The 9/11 terrorists all had valid IDs. What's to stop the next batch of terrorists from getting valid Real IDs?

      That's the problem - they had valid ID. But there is a plethora of valid IDs out there. For instance, a birth certificate, which may or may not have foot prints, is considered a valid ID for applying for other IDs. How does a birth certificate IDentify anybody in this day and age?????!!!!! In 99% of cases, it's a non-standard scrap of paper (every county has a different looking one) you happen

      • Re:Real ID (Score:3, Insightful)

        by schon (31600)
        That's the problem - they had valid ID.

        Sorry, if the problem is "bad people" having valid ID, how is having adding *another* piece of valid ID going to solve the problem?

        A national ID, with biometric info, may not be a bad idea, of telling the authorities YOUR ARE WHO YOU SAY YOU ARE.

        Which doesn't really address his point.

        The guys responsible for 9/11 were who they said they were, and they had ID to prove it. How will this change?

        A piece of ID can't tell anyone that you're going to break a law.

        That's the p
      • Re:Real ID (Score:4, Interesting)

        by winwar (114053) on Friday January 13, 2006 @10:26PM (#14469396)
        "For instance, a birth certificate, which may or may not have foot prints, is considered a valid ID for applying for other IDs. How does a birth certificate IDentify anybody in this day and age?????!!!!! In 99% of cases, it's a non-standard scrap of paper (every county has a different looking one) you happen to have on your person."

        And how is this different from any other piece of ID used in the process of getting another ID? I mean if a birth certificate can be faked a utility bill, social security card, voter registration card, work ID, etc. can be faked. An ID is only as good as the underlying documents that allowed you to get it in the first place. Unless you link ALL the databases it won't help-and even then.....

        Even if we are fingerprinted, DNA sampled and chipped at birth ID's would still be faked. ID's are not totally secure and never can be. As someone stated in another thread, we really want to know who is the bad guy. But that can only be determined from actions not an ID.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:19PM (#14467608)
    The consequences for not meeting the law's provisions are severe: those holding licenses from States that fail to meet the requirements by 2008 will not be permitted to fly on airplanes or enter federal buildings.

    So the solution is to not get a license.

    In any case, I can't see them possibly enforcing this, especially if you have multiple states or large states that don't meet the requirements. Frankly I think all states should just ignore the law. In a game of chicken between states and the federal government, the federal government can't win.
    • So the solution is to not get a license.

      Okay, so now you aren't allowed to drive.

      Good luck with that.

      (And if there's a chance at enforcement, I don't think you'll see ANY state resist. People depend too much on air travel.)
    • 'nuff said.
    • by MarkusQ (450076) on Friday January 13, 2006 @10:15PM (#14469355) Journal

      The consequences for not meeting the law's provisions are severe: those holding licenses from States that fail to meet the requirements by 2008 will not be permitted to fly on airplanes or enter federal buildings.

      Does anyone else remember when "Your papers, please, comrade" was always said in a foreign accent, and as a joke?

      --MarkusQ

  • Illegal Immigration (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Vicissidude (878310) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:20PM (#14467618)
    This has nothing to do with reducing terrorism and everything to do with reducing illegal immigration.
    • Well, you're half right. It has nothing to do with terrorism. But I have no idea what makes you think this administration gives two shitake mushrooms about illegal immigration. This is the same administration, remember, that referred to the first effective effort to curb illegal immigration - a bunch of citizens sitting in the desert and calling the border patrol when they found an illegal - "vigilanteism," and then did everything possible to kiss up to Vicente Fox.

      If I had to decide what this really had to
    • This has nothing to do with reducing terrorism and everything to do with reducing illegal immigration.

      No, that's just an added benefit.

      We spend billions of dollars to secure our airports whilst doing nothing about the million people per year that cross our borders illegally. This is akin to buying a home alarm system, wiring it to the front door, and leaving the back wide open.

      We desperately need to combine a sane border policy with an extensive guest worker program. The current administration does not

      • The idea that terrorists won't harm us or cross our borders due to a lack of American ID cards is complete nonsense, and everyone knows it. However, everyone also knows that immigrants can get American IDs and drive on American roads because of it. This law only provides another disincentive for illegal immigrants to enter our country. It has nothing to do with terrorism.
        • The idea that terrorists won't harm us or cross our borders due to a lack of American ID cards is complete nonsense, and everyone knows it.
          I don't "know it."

          Are you saying we should make no attempt to stop terrorists at our borders? And would you prefer we made no effort to stem the tide of illegal immigration?

          Just because a task is difficult does not mean we should shy away from it. Especially regarding matters of life and death.
          • Me: The idea that terrorists won't harm us or cross our borders due to a lack of American ID cards is complete nonsense, and everyone knows it.
            You: I don't "know it."


            Terrorists can cross our borders just as easily as illegal immigrants can. The lack of American ID never stopped illegal immigrants, so it's completely illogical to assume that lack of American ID will stop terrorists.

            Are you saying we should make no attempt to stop terrorists at our borders? And would you prefer we made no effort to
            • From your most recent post:

              Terrorists can cross our borders just as easily as illegal immigrants can. The lack of American ID never stopped illegal immigrants, so it's completely illogical to assume that lack of American ID will stop terrorists.

              From your prior post, referring to the Real ID:

              This law only provides another disincentive for illegal immigrants to enter our country.

              So which is it? Will the law do nothing or will it be another disincentive for illegal immigrants?

              Please keep in mind tha

  • Luckily (Score:5, Funny)

    by Shadow Wrought (586631) <shadow.wrought@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:20PM (#14467620) Homepage Journal
    The competing Fake ID(tm) Act having been in full swing for several decades, released a statement syaing in part, "As long as there are teenagers, spring break, and alcohol, our business will continue to boom."
  • by Control Group (105494) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:20PM (#14467627) Homepage
    It's a depressing sign of just how far we've fallen when the objections to the Real ID act by the states all center around its feasibility, rather than all the reasons it's fundamentally flawed. You know, little things like "the federal government doesn't have the Consitutional authority to mandate a national ID," or "it won't actually do anything to combat terrorism," or "it's a single point source of failure in protection against identity theft," or "it runs completely contrary to the principles this country was founded upon."

    This is the inverse of damning with faint praise. So, blessing with faint criticisms, or some such. It's analogous to arguing with a poster by critiquing his grammar or spelling. Just as that implicitly states you agree with the argument, this implicitly states Real ID is a good idea.

    Problem is, there's nowhere left to run.
    • The constitution originally said nothing about the right of the federal government to tax the income of its citizens, but if the government is going to tax citizens, the last thing people want is for their tax dollars to be given to support the non-citizen welfare state in this country due to illegal immigration.

      Furthermore, if an illegal immigrant crashes into your car, or damages your property, or defames your character, how are you going to sue someone who cannot be tracked down to receive a summons and
    • Problem is, there's nowhere left to run.

      Canada?
    • Ah, it is not "mandated".

      You just cant go on ANY federal property (courts parks etc)
      nor can you travel via interstate commerce (planes trains and buses)

      That said there is nothing stopping a state from saying "FU".
      Of course they "might" lose all their other federal funding should
      they do so....

      Screw security, I'll take liberty every time.
      We've all got to die sometime, I'd prefer to live a short
      and free life versus a long and opressed one.

      • by Control Group (105494) on Friday January 13, 2006 @06:08PM (#14468024) Homepage
        Yeah, that's certainly the cop out the fed.gov is using to sidestep the whole problem that they're trying to do something they have no legal authority to do...but you and I both know it amounts to a mandate. How many states have managed to stay off the fed.gov teat well enough to not have to cave to federal highway funding requirements?

        Want to bet that federal highway funds will be tied to this if there's any indication that states are deliberately not complying?

        Feh.

        Regarding security versus liberty, I couldn't agree more. What's really depressing, though, is the Big Lie nature of the whole thing. It might not be so frustrating if we actually were getting security at the cost of liberty. But the real crime is we're not; we're pissing away our liberty at an ever-increasing rate, and we've got nothing to show for it (or at least, nothing even close to equivalent value).
      • nor can you travel via interstate commerce (planes trains and buses)

        Those vehicles are quite capable of traveling within a state.

        Let's say California is one of the states that can't comply with RealID. Flying from Los Angeles to San Francisco would not be interstate commerce, but I would not be able to do it.

  • by TubeSteak (669689) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:22PM (#14467642) Journal
    I know some people who don't have passports, or guys/gals who live in big cities and don't have a driver's license.

    I suggest you go get yours renewed (or go get them if you don't have 'em) now, rather than when you need them.

    Driver's licenses/State IDs are good for ~5 years and passports are good for 10 years.

    Better do it now, before they institute radio tags, biometrics, or whatever other technology they plan to implement.

    It's only a holding action, but I'll be happier knowing I put off the inevitable.
  • Real ID? (Score:5, Funny)

    by taskforce (866056) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:24PM (#14467653) Homepage
    If it's anything like Real Audio, thanks but no thanks.
  • by mpapet (761907)
    Think about this for a minute.

    Everyone of you that live in fear of a national ID might tell me that whatever agency gets to build the thing will share with any agency that comes calling? Simple human nature tells me this won't happen. No sharing of information, no real substantial coordination between agencies. Nothing.

    I am concerned that centralizing law enforcement authority will be a more desirable outcome of the legislation, with no intention of ever actually issuing an ID card.

    There are quite a number
  • My driver's license doesn't expire until 2017, and my passport is good for flying nearly as long.

    So if the feds want to ban the use of Arizona ID on planes, it's OK by me.

  • by ugmoe (776194) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:49PM (#14467867)
    >>"Opposed by more than 600 independent organizations >> (including the National Governors Association)

    They seem to be stretching the truth on this one, the truth is that the official National Governors Association position is that they will happily make any kind of ID's requested as long as the federal government provides the funds.

    Here is the official NGA statement:

    http://www.nga.org/portal/site/nga/menuitem.8358ec 82f5b198d18a278110501010a0/?vgnextoid=3f90d3add6da 2010VgnVCM1000001a01010aRCRD [nga.org]

    Policy Position

    printable version

    03/03/2005

    EDC-18. Driver's License and Personal Identification Card Integrity

    The motor vehicle driver's license, which is issued by each state, is used as an official identification document as well as a document that demonstrates an individual's knowledge and ability to operate a motor vehicle. States also issue personal identification cards that can be used as an official identification document. Most driver's licenses and personal identification cards have common elements displayed, such as a photo, a signature, a unique identifier number, and the individual's physical description. This has made the state-issued driver's license and personal identification card the most acceptable forms of identification in America.

    Governors are concerned about the security and integrity of state driver's licenses, state personal identification cards, and the identification process. They are committed to working cooperatively with the federal government to develop and implement realistic, achievable standards that will enhance efforts to prevent document fraud and other illegal activity related to the issuance of driver's licenses and identification documents.

    In making changes to the current system of issuing driver's licenses and personal identification cards, Governors believe that any rule or regulation requiring a change to the driver's license document or the personal identification card document should only apply to newly issued, renewed, and duplicate driver's licenses and identification cards produced by a state. Furthermore, any rulemaking body that is prescribing new standards for driver's licenses or personal identification cards must perform an assessment of the annual benefits and costs of its recommendations. The federal government should provide adequate funding to states to implement any required mandate stemming from the rulemaking. At no time should the rulemaking body propose an unfunded mandate on states.

  • Easy Compliance (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Thunderstruck (210399) on Friday January 13, 2006 @05:56PM (#14467917)
    If anyone cares to actually read the provisions of the Act which implement the Real ID system, they'll see a provision which allows for easy compliance. In essence, my state can continue to issue licenses and ignore the data gathering burdens of the act by simply changing the color of the license and printing "not valid as federal identification" on the front.

    Of course, then I may need some alternative form of ID if I wish to deal with a federal agency... But it's cheap this way.
  • Trying to reason with people who can actually support such ideas is useless. They're beyond reason, usually due to fear. One sentence I've used that actualy worked on such people is:

    "Well, there's nothing so wrong with it, it's just not America."

    /Your papers, please.
  • Tacking on bills (Score:3, Interesting)

    by t_allardyce (48447) on Friday January 13, 2006 @06:08PM (#14468027) Journal
    Im not an American but whats with all this hiding laws in other bills bullshit? Surely this is a most weaselly and below the belt tactic? Why is this accepted in anyway? Why does no-one automatically cry foul and make sure whoever did it looses all trust and respect? I can understand why you cant treat it as a hostage taking and automatically vote down any bill that's had something dodgy tacked on - obviously people would use that as a tool to get rid of bills but surely this sort of thing can be controlled or shunned out of practice? How does it work?
    • Surely this is a most weaselly and below the belt tactic?

      Close - giving bills names like "patriot" so that no-one will dare vote against it or even complain much that they haven't been given time to read it is even worse. As for bribery - even if it is considered "honest graft" as named in the 1850's for the practice for taking money for something you would most likely vote for anyway, it doesn't really seem to be the democratic way or paticularly desirable in a republic.

    • Re:Tacking on bills (Score:3, Informative)

      by Ryan C. (159039)
      I'm an American so I'll give it a shot.

      The problem is that there is nothing in our laws or constitution to prevent it, and so it would take a fundemental revamping of our congressional bylaws to fix the problem.

      Congress did it once not too long ago, by giving the Executive branch a "line item veto" power. This meant that the president could veto riders and send them back to pass by 2/3rds majority on their own. Since almost all riders are bullshit pork that only a small minority want in the first place,
    • Oh man! This is the very lifeblood of American politics! When President Reagan called for a "line-item veto" politicians screamed bloody murder.

      Tacking bills on to other bills creates all sorts of interesting problems.

      Senator A proposes a bill that would increase benefits for disabled veterans. Senator B tacks on a bill to that one that finances a monument to himself in his home district. Senator C votes against the (now combined) bill because it's a waste of money. Senator D can then claim that Senator B "
    • I can't really find a good link for you, but the gist of the matter seems to be that it's a loophole in the rules of the Senate (I don't think you can attach riders((the term used for these attachments)) in the House w/out a special vote?) that both sides are able to use to their advantage.

      Why does nobody automatically cry foul? I'm not sure if you're familiar with our political process, but we're fairly complacent about being openly corrupt. Remember that whole "Gore wins the election but Bush becomes
    • A very valid question, why are legislators allowing this?
  • Whats the big deal? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Isaac-1 (233099) on Friday January 13, 2006 @06:13PM (#14468060)
    As it stands now lack of state issued ID is almost a defacto guilty until proven innocent offense. As a perfect example, a few years ago I was on vacation at a beachfront hotel, One evening I was sitting out on the lounge chairs watching the sunset with a group of half a dozen or so strangers. There was typical limited casual conversation going on, one of the guys there was sipping a beer, and one of the women was drinking a glass of wine. A police officer pulls up on an ATV and starts asking for ID's from those that were drinking. The woman who appeared to be about 30 years old pulled her drivers license out from her purse. The guy with the beer was not so lucky, he looked a bit younger and was wearing a bathing suit, he said his ID was up in the hotel room. So the police officer spent the next 10-15 minutes disturbing out peaceful view of the sunset by asking this young guy all sorts of questions (Name, address, SSN, etc) then asked the entire group of people to not leave while he radioed this this information in. About 20 minutes later the police had looked up this guys drivers license, radioed back a description, etc. and confirmed that he was 25 years old.

    Ike
  • by JimBobJoe (2758) <swiftheart@gmail.NETBSDcom minus bsd> on Friday January 13, 2006 @06:16PM (#14468085)
    I've written about non-compliance as a solution [politechbot.com] to the REAL ID Act.

    Fortunately the act was written so states could decline to comply, and not have to deal with losing funding (which is unavailable to help states comply anyway.)

    As I point out, on a day to day basis most people don't need a federally accepted ID card. It's cheaper for the states to tell people who need a federal ID card to just get a passport (which about 25% of Americans already have.)

    If worse comes to worst, the occasionaly traveller can just travel ID-less. The airline will decide what to do with the ID card, and if it's not accepted, the passenger will become a selectee (which is the normal procedure for a passenger without ID.)

  • by jarrettwold2002 (601633) on Friday January 13, 2006 @06:29PM (#14468171)
    I live in North Dakota. I sent a letter in last year when this came up as an issue and received a response back from Senator Conrad of North Dakota.

    All typos herein are mine, not the letters'. Further, I made points about the Real ID leading to a de facto national ID. That's not especially clear here.

    "Dear Jarrett:

    Thank you for contacting me about a national identification (ID) card. It was good to hear from you.

    You mentioned your thoughts about the national ID card. Specifically, you mentioned your concern that a central database created by a national ID would be difficult to create, maintain, and protect. As you may know, there is no legislation that would specifically create a national ID card. However, some groups and individuals are concerned that the REAL ID provisions included in the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act for Defense, the Global War on Terror, and Tsunami Relief, 2005, would in effect, create a national ID. The REAL ID provisions would impose federal standards on state-issued identification. Opponents of this legislation fear that it infringes on their privacy rights. Supporters of this legislation argue that it is needed to make drivers' licenses, which are used to board aircrafts at airports, secure from fraud.

    The Senate version of the supplemental appropriations bill did not contain the REAL ID provisions. However, in negotations to resolve the differences between the two versions of the bill, the House of Representatives insisted that the REAL ID provisions be included in the final version of the bill. As a result, the final version of the supplememntal appropriations bill includes the so-called REAL ID provisions. Under Senate rules, there was no opportunity to amend the final version of the bill. On May 5, 2005, the House of Representatives passed this version of the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act by a vote of 368-58. The Senate also passed this legislation on May 10, 2005, and the President signed it into law on May 11, 2005. Please know I will keep your thoughts in mind should the Senate consider a national ID card.

    Sincerely,

    Kent Conrad
    United States Senate"
    • It takes a very special type of opportunist to do such a thing.

      I suggest it's time for the USA to go back to trying to be the shining example of democracy instead of going for an arms race of kleptocracy with the former USSR.

  • by Pluvius (734915) <pluvius3.gmail@com> on Friday January 13, 2006 @06:48PM (#14468312) Journal
    Despite the fact that relatively sound and effective improvements to driver's license security had already been implemented as part of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act

    The only "improvements" to license registration I've seen in West Virginia are stupid and ineffective. Law-abiding citizens need an act of Congress to get a license but all a terrorist has to do is forge a couple more documents. I imagine other states that made changes aren't much better.

    Rob
  • So, they're going to make provision for names only as long as 128 characters? What are they going to do with the people whose names are longer than that? It's not legal to use abbreviations or nicknames. What if I change my name to "Russssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss s ssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss ssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss sssssssssssssssssssssssss
    Nelson"? Oh, but I won't have the freedom to do that, because they'll make it illegal (rather than
  • by MsWillow (17812) on Friday January 13, 2006 @08:41PM (#14468969) Homepage Journal
    for the trans folk like me. I was born male, and transitioned to living as a woman 12 years ago. I've had some surgery, and lots of hormones, and have finally come to terms with life in-between. I really don't need any more surgery to be happy, and that's the whole point of the treatment for gender dysphoria.

    By some judges, I'm legally female. By others, nothing I'll ever do will make me female. I look feminine enough that even nurses do a double-take upon seeing my Social Security card which says I'm male.

    My ID currently has my legal name, my pretty femmme picture, and says I'm female. What will my "real" ID say? And what bathroom must I use when out? Would I cause a stir by using the men's room, when I haven't been "read" as male in 6 years?

    I may not survive the Real ID.
  • by dada21 (163177) * <adam.dada@gmail.com> on Friday January 13, 2006 @08:43PM (#14468984) Homepage Journal
    1. The Federal government has no provision in the Constitution in order to force anyone to carry ID. When I fly, I still refuse to show my ID to any government agency and the TSA couldn't do anything about it.

    2. For those who intend to mention it, the commerce clause was intended to keep the STATES from hurting trade. It was never meant to allow the Federal government any power to tax, regulate, mandate or require.

    3. The entire Federal government is unconstitutional. Every officer that takes an oath to uphold the Constitution has broken that oath. I believe this is possibly treason, and the penalty for treason should be public hanging if found guilty.

    4. I'm finished with this mess. If you're ready to take steps to get yourself out of the authoritarian rut, cancel your bank accounts, switch from a salaried employee to a 1099 contractor, stop using credit cards and loans, sell your house and buy something without a mortgage, store your wealth in gold and silver and work to start your own company. Get out from under the hands of these bastards.

    5. If the day comes that the dollar crashes, I'll be taking names for anyone who wants to toil on my land in trade for food and shelter.

    Seriously, though, this is just nuts. I refuse my ID to everyone already (except private companies who request it for me to enter their private property). In Illinois we have laws requiring me to show my ID when I am pulled over for a traffic stop -- I refuse. I don't even roll the window down more than a crack. I tell the (possibly fake) officer that I refuse to speak, and if there is a problem he can call another squad car in to arrest me and charge me with a crime. This is the proper way to deal with speeding tickets (and I've been arrested on a ticket only once in a dozen times in a dozen years -- and the officer's boss let me go immediately).

    Stop helping the system! Stop using their services. Just walk away. Life is much better when you're free.

When you make your mark in the world, watch out for guys with erasers. -- The Wall Street Journal

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