Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Privacy United States Your Rights Online

Maine Rejects Federally Mandated ID Cards 621

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the marks-of-the-beast dept.
WebHostingGuy writes "The State of Maine rejected the federally mandated ID cards passed by Congress. In a non-partisan vote the legislature flatly stated that they would not force its citizens to use driver's licenses that comply with digital ID standards, which were established under the 2005 Real ID Act. It also asked Congress to repeal the law."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Maine Rejects Federally Mandated ID Cards

Comments Filter:
  • I don't get it. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ArcherB (796902) * on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:11PM (#17763590) Journal
    Seriously, someone explain to me what is wrong with a national ID standard... without saying "papers please".
  • by Samuel Dravis (964810) on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:11PM (#17763596)
    I think this is similar to how SD created the anti-abortion law. They are deliberately saying no to get the law tested in court.
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:16PM (#17763660)
    You just answered your own question, so you obviously understand the reasoning.
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by AJWM (19027) on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:17PM (#17763664) Homepage
    what is wrong with a national ID standard

    Please point out the section of the Constitution that authorizes the Federal government to require this.

    And don't say "Commerce clause".
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by adamstew (909658) * on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:19PM (#17763700)
    I believe the biggest issue that people have with it is that the national ID standard requires people to bring in their original birth certificate, and a social security card. Those will get scanned in and uploaded to a federal database.
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tyler.willard (944724) on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:20PM (#17763712)
    What more reason do you need?

    We're supposed to be an independent people distrustful of government. The people who founded this country overthrew their own government for fuck's sake.

    "Why not?" should never be the standard for anything that enhances government power and/or limits individual liberty.

    The standard should be "Why should we?".

    And no, "We have to keep you safe." is not an adequate reason.
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ArcherB (796902) * on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:24PM (#17763768) Journal

    Please point out the section of the Constitution that authorizes the Federal government to require this


    I'll show you as soon as you show me where in the Constitution it authorizes HUD, Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and everything else our gov't does that is not specifically spelled out in the Constitution. Just because it's not stated, does not mean it is forbidden.
  • 10.1 (Score:4, Insightful)

    by way2trivial (601132) on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:32PM (#17763838) Homepage Journal
    it's like this..

    28 guys want military spending
    31 guys want tsunami relifer
    only 2 guys want both.

    that means, lump them together, get 57 votes
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by ArcherB (796902) * on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:33PM (#17763846) Journal
    "Why not?" should never be the standard for anything that enhances government power and/or limits individual liberty.
    How does a national ID standard limit liberty any more that the existing standard set by the state of Maine or any of the other 49 states? How does an ID database with your name prevent you from doing anything that you can do today. (not to mention that you are already in a Federal database, probably several like Social Security, IRS and so on)

    The standard should be "Why should we?".
    Because it will be harder for Abu Mohammed to fake.

    And no, "We have to keep you safe." is not an adequate reason.
    Uh, yeah it is. We have speed limits to keep me safe. I have to wear a seatbelt to keep me safe. I can't drink and drive to keep me (and you) safe... How is this any different?
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by karmatic (776420) on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:34PM (#17763858)
    Just because it's not stated, does not mean it is forbidden.

    Actually, it is:
    Amendment X
    The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

    The fact that the federal government has abused the commerce clause and completly disregarded most of the constitution for some time now doesn't make this particular encroachment right.

  • Goddamn straight (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ShimmyShimmy (692324) <bplennon&gmail,com> on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:36PM (#17763876) Homepage Journal
    This Federal ID idea is definitely rediculous. I'm glad someone is actively opposing it. I suppose it is good they are trying to push states to actually have good ID cards. Some of them (West Virginia, New Jersey until recently) are rediculously easy to fake. Not that I, ahem, would know anything about that.
    But let's not give them too much credit. This is obviously another step toward removing already eroding privacy rights in this country. And of course the convenient excuse "war on terror" will be stamped all over this.

    Let's get a run-down of what this will actually mean to the average consumer.
    ~ By "common machine readable technology", I'm assuming they mean RFID, which we all know has its drawbacks [eweek.com].
    ~ I doubt this will end up being a substitute for a Driver's License. What if you lose driving privilages and have to turn in your ID? Do you have to get a new "non-driver" card just to go to the bank? Bull shit. Inevitably, this will have to be carried around in addition to a driver's license. Great, another unnecessary card to carry in my wallet. Why don't they just make us all wear collars around our necks. Not like nobody's ever thought of that [westvalley.edu] before.
    ~ It will obviously be scanned at every point of use. I forsee an amendment in the near future extending this to train/bus travel as well.
    ~ Inevitably, this will be part of a big government database. We all know those are generally bad ideas [techdirt.com]. I wouldn't be surprised if they link this up to your EZ-Pass so they can see where your car is going too. Remember (FTA) this is an $83 billion project. It is going to be BIG. ~ What if you lose this thing? It's bad enough getting the state to replace an ID... who do I complain to now? The FBI? Dept of Homeland Security?

    I don't even want to think about this anymore. Go Maine.
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by tyler.willard (944724) on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:49PM (#17764024)
    How does a national ID standard limit liberty any more that the existing standard set by the state of Maine or any of the other 49 states? How does an ID database with your name prevent you from doing anything that you can do today. (not to mention that you are already in a Federal database, probably several like Social Security, IRS and so on)

    You've answered your own question. Those examples are merely indicative that we've gone too far already. How does it limit you? The simple fact you can't conduct your personal affairs privately and without authorization.

    Because it will be harder for Abu Mohammed to fake.

    Bullshit. We're supposed to believe that the enemies you allude to have vast resources and total commitment. Such pedestrian measures as standardized ID is not going to be an effective protection. The only people that this sort of ID affects are the citizenry.

    Uh, yeah it is. We have speed limits to keep me safe. I have to wear a seatbelt to keep me safe. I can't drink and drive to keep me (and you) safe... How is this any different?

    Speed limits are anonymous. The seatbelt thing is also ridiculous, you should not be compelled to be cautious.

    Lastly, cowardice is the natural enemy of liberty. Living in a free society is a dangerous proposition. If you don't accept that fine, say so.

  • by Raul654 (453029) on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:49PM (#17764026) Homepage
    They are indeed questioning the constitutionality of the law. And, to (roughly) quote Larry Lessig, "In America, the way to ask a legal question is to sue somebody". Passing a state law rejecting the Federal one is just the first stepping stone to the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, which is really where this question will be authoritatively answered.
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mrchaotica (681592) * on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:50PM (#17764032)

    Again, no one can tell me how this is a violation of rights.

    It doesn't matter if it violates any fundamental human rights like free speech, etc. The fact that it violates the states' rights and the people's rights by going far beyond what could reasonably be construed as "regulating interstate commerce" is enough to make it unconstitutional.

  • bullies (Score:5, Insightful)

    by drDugan (219551) * on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:50PM (#17764036) Homepage
    my daughter said something quite profound about a year ago: "Standing up to bullies is easy, you just stomp on their toes".

    It is profound for several reasons. You shouldn't fight the bully head on, they are bigger and (in this case) control the White house and the Army.

    But you make it hurt, a lot (you "stomp"), but you do it below the vision of most people watching.

    You stand right up to the bully, to their face and make them face you. Most bullies are craven and will crumble at the first sign of real resistance.

    Bush Psychology -- http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/011807J.shtml [truthout.org]

    This is just the first step in a long, painful road to recovery for this nation.
  • by FlyingSquidStudios (1031284) on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:53PM (#17764060) Homepage
    Do you really think the TSA would stop all of Maine from flying? The feds rely on the taxpayers for income. Pissing off a state's worth of them is not a good plan.
  • by schwit1 (797399) on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:54PM (#17764078)
    Remember when the 55mph speed limit was not the law, but a suggestion, and all states complied? Any state that didn't go along was denied federal highway funds. Same could happen here.


    Personally I have no problem with congress appointing non-government experts to define minimum security standards for important documents. But congress is treating RealID as a security end in itself.

  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jeff DeMaagd (2015) on Thursday January 25, 2007 @11:57PM (#17764112) Homepage Journal
    Because it will be harder for Abu Mohammed to fake.

    So what? Enough with the FUD. I do not count the spectre of terrorism to be a valid reason, nor do I see this tiny bit of security a justification for the feds to violate the constitution again.

    I don't want to be callous, but frankly, people are far too worried about terrorism. If you take a list of what causes people to die and how many people actually die from it, terrorism is waaaaay down the list. I think you are probably more likely to drown in a 12oz glass of fruit juice than you are to die in a terrorist act.

    The "9/11" terrorists could have been caught without PATRIOT, without mandatory ID requirements or any of the other shenanigans. That incident happened because dozens of agencies simply dropped the ball. Nothing has been done since that actually fixes the problem to the slightest degree. They are all actions done under the guise of fixing them but are simply misdirections to make people think something is being done.
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ArcherB (796902) * on Friday January 26, 2007 @12:31AM (#17764430) Journal
    How does a national ID standard qualify as "regulating interstate commerce"? Where does it say that only a state can issue ID's? How is this NOT allowed in the necessary and proper clause [wikipedia.org]?
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 26, 2007 @12:31AM (#17764436)
    Because it will be harder for Abu Mohammed to fake.

    Ummm, you do know that the sep. 11 hijackers had real genuine ID in their own names, right?

    They don't need fake ID.
  • by takeya (825259) * on Friday January 26, 2007 @01:23AM (#17764906) Journal
    This is not an issue of interstate commerce. The federal government does not have the authority to pass this law, the law clearly states that if states don't participate, they lose certain amounts of federal revenue, most likely highway funding. That will be Maine's penalty. There will probably not be a federal lawsuit, and this is not nullification.
  • SS (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Friar_MJK (814134) on Friday January 26, 2007 @01:31AM (#17764982)
    Yea, I already have my nationally issued I.D. card... It's called my social security number! People ask me for it all the time when I do even the most basic of purchasing. Soooo, this would solve??? There will always be ways around it no matter what you do. Remember... those "sneaky terrorists" get more resourceful all the time!
  • by wtansill (576643) on Friday January 26, 2007 @02:25AM (#17765324)

    The Federal law doesn't technically force states to implement the ID stuff, it just says that if they don't, they won't get their federal highway money.
    "Nice little road system you got here -- be a shame to see it deteriorate!" is functionally equivalent to "Nice little candy store you got here -- be a shame to see something bad happen to it!" Which one is the Mafia, and which is the government?
  • Re:Drinking Age (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Iloinen Lohikrme (880747) on Friday January 26, 2007 @04:14AM (#17765840)
    Why 21 is better drinking age than 18? As it is, at least here in Finland, almost everybody have drank alcohol long ago before turning to 18. In other parts of Europe young people also drink alcohol very young, and this haven't flushed the continent under the table. What I have heard, both from European exchange students visiting US and from Americans, is that young people instead of drinking alcohol, because it's so hard to get, blow pot. So one 'bad habit' is traded to another one.

    On a note, when one turns to 18, he is adult, he usually moves to own his/her place, he can vote, he can be elected and he can/has to go to a army. So why not give all the rights to 18 year old at the same time when he/she comes fully liable on his/her own life?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 26, 2007 @04:20AM (#17765862)

    The Federal law doesn't technically force states to implement the ID stuff, it just says that if they don't, they won't get their federal highway money.

    "Nice little road system you got here -- be a shame to see it deteriorate!" is functionally equivalent to "Nice little candy store you got here -- be a shame to see something bad happen to it!" Which one is the Mafia, and which is the government?

    Old protection racket scheme, you pay for protection or you will need it. The US tested this and found it to work "nicely" for the IRS. If you don't pay them what they decide you owe they will come take it from you. Where did the Mafia get it? Probably from some government or another, perhaps the Vatican. Plenty enough documentation in history that the church sold you salvation, from them. Interestingly enough governmental oppression via taxation and/or church control is what brought most of our predecessors to the US. UK tried to control and milk the colonies via taxation etc..

    Originally the federal government was supposed to be funded only by the graces of the states and tariffs and the states' governments controlled who went to the senate and thus their senators would protect the sovereignity of the states from popular demands and federal power seizures. Changing senators to popular elections shifted the balance of power, unfortunately it has taken power not just from the states but from the people. Of course you can also argue that the people have abdicated their power and/or that corporations have bought it away from them. Both in many ways are all too true, just like the public school system was set up to train you to accept and tolerate this kind of behaviour from the government and from corporations. I for one am convinced the major reason entrepreneurship is more prevalent among people who move into the US then those who grew up in within the public school system.

    Only way I can see this changing is for those who are able to re-educate themselves to do so and try to influence others to do the same. We need to establish more entrepreneurship, including the family farms and we could use some truth in the newspapers etc too. We need to either retake our political parties or form new ones, from the grass roots level up. Got an elected official on the take? Vote him/her out irregardless if its legal contributions to them or not if they selling their vote they are selling their vote and they need to be voted down. Above all else we need to remind people that we should not rely on the government for everything. The more we ask of government the more power we have to give them to do it and eventually they start to claim they already have the power to add more on.

    Society in every state is a blessing, but Government, even in its best state, is but a necessary evil; in its worst state an intolerable one: for when we suffer, or are exposed to the same miseries BY A GOVERNMENT, which we might expect in a country WITHOUT GOVERNMENT, our calamity is heightened by reflecting that we furnish the means by which we suffer. Government, like dress, is the badge of lost innocence; the palaces of kings are built upon the ruins of the bowers of paradise. For were the impulses of conscience clear, uniform and irresistibly obeyed, man would need no other lawgiver; but that not being the case, he finds it necessary to surrender up a part of his property to furnish means for the protection of the rest; and this he is induced to do by the same prudence which in every other case advises him, out of two evils to choose the least. Wherefore, security being the true design and end of government, it unanswerably follows that whatever form thereof appears most likely to ensure it to us, with the least expense and greatest benefit, is preferable to all others.

    Common Sense Thomas Paine [ushistory.org]

    I would suggest everyone re-read Common S

  • by Magada (741361) on Friday January 26, 2007 @05:13AM (#17766078) Journal
    As a European, you've probably grown up under an oppressive nanny-type government and have very little (if any) notion of how free (in the real sense) US citizens were a mere 50 years ago, and still are, despite repeated encroachments upon their rights by successive abusive far-right governments. There are a couple good technical solutions to the problem of authentication, but a unique state-mandated uniform ID is not one of them. For the unique id is a single point of failure, and it's very, very weak.

    What ties you to your precious govt-issued ID, pray tell? Does it store (in a secure manner) data about something you are, like a DNA sample or a fingerprint? Or perhaps something you and only you know, like a passphrase? Both, maybe? Not likely. All it does is constitute a a search key for data mining and no, the photo don't cut it - they're trivially easy to fake and biometrics don't really work yet.

    Use your head a bit, mmkay?
  • by shmlco (594907) on Friday January 26, 2007 @05:21AM (#17766118) Homepage
    "They are indeed questioning the constitutionality of the law."

    They need to question the constitutionality behind the way the law was passed in the first place. From the article, "A key Republican supporter of the Real ID Act said Thursday that the law was just as necessary now as when it was enacted as part of an $82 billion military spending and tsunami relief bill."

    In other words some sleezy congress-critter appended it to a "must pass" spending bill, and we, the people, didn't get a chance to debate it, or determine if it was in fact "necessary" at all.
  • by mpe (36238) on Friday January 26, 2007 @05:29AM (#17766160)
    So Maine doesn't have to accept the fed's ID standards. Then the TSA doesn't have to accept Maine DLs at airports. Who will win?

    It should hardly be relevent in the first place. It's not like you can drive a car around a depature lounge or along the aisle of a passenger aircraft. AFAIK it's also not a requirment that all people in the other 49 states must drive.
  • by Scarblac (122480) <slashdot@gerlich.nl> on Friday January 26, 2007 @05:48AM (#17766256) Homepage

    As a European, you've probably grown up under an oppressive nanny-type government

    Legal drugs, legal prostitution, legal abortion, legal porn, legal drinking age of 16 (and not much policing below it)... real oppressive and nanny-like, yeah. Fix yourselves first.

  • by mpe (36238) on Friday January 26, 2007 @06:17AM (#17766384)
    Umm, it's not a substitute for the driver's license, it is the driver's license. With the added bonus that as long as you keep it you don't need yet another card.

    Except that this isn't always a bonus. Since the one card may come with various abilities you may rarely, even never, want to use. An analogy would be would be is it better to carry one "master key" to every door you might possibly want to open any time in your life or a bunch of keys for the doors you regularly use.

    The driver's license is supposed to identify the user anyway, so it only makes sense to make it a real ID.

    All the "identity" it needs is to prove that the holder is the holder for a fairly restricted set of activities. i.e. those related to driving a vehicle on public roads.
  • by mrscorpio (265337) <twoheadedboy@nOSpAM.stonepool.com> on Friday January 26, 2007 @06:19AM (#17766402)
    Don't forget the socialist healthcare, welfare middle class, and 50% income tax.
  • Re:I don't get it. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mpe (36238) on Friday January 26, 2007 @06:43AM (#17766512)
    I agree with you completely. Letting the individual citizens vote directly for federal senate was the worst mistake in the history of this country.

    One problem is that more voting does not always equate to more democracy.

    It essentially invalidates local politics in the minds of a lot of people, because they figure they already voted for someone who "outranks" state representatives, therefor they don't need to care.

    Probaly also killed off the possibility of state and regional political parties.

    We've gone from a system of independent states which were more like individual nations in a loose alliance, to one large state with funny names for the different sections.

    Together with a political system dominated by two large parties which are quite similar in many ways.
  • by thebdj (768618) on Friday January 26, 2007 @07:13AM (#17766650) Journal
    Honestly, I do not think Maine cares about their highway funds. There are not a lot of US routes through Maine, the only Interstate is I-95, which is tolled for portion where it is the Maine Turnpike. I think there could actually be a potential here for Maine, if they truly do not care about the highway funds. Lower the drinking age back to 18. I am sure a lot of kids in the parts closer to Canada already make trips across the border for alcohol, so why not just keep them in state and keep the money at home. It could also attract college students and other individuals from Boston and NH, who want to get alcohol legally.

    Now, to argue the drinking age. Here is why 21 is bad. Is underage drinking a problem? Yes. Is binge drinking a problem? Yes, but one that has been a bit overblown. How to you solve both at once? Lower the age to 16. Here is why. Where do most 16 yr olds live? At home, with their parents who can teach them the importance of drinking responsibly while they are still at home. By having the drinking age 21, people are well into college before they can legally drink. For many college students, it is their first time away from home for any extended time. Without the parents around, the children will play and drinking becomes an issue. Since it is their first times drinking (and they are "unsupervised") they wound up into trouble situations. I could also use that old (and possible flawed) argument, "At 18 you are old enough to fight and die for this country, but you are not old enough to enjoy a little bit of alcohol." You will find that in the countries where drinking is legal, the countries with drinking ages of 21 are in the minority.
  • by Oligonicella (659917) on Friday January 26, 2007 @08:37AM (#17767346)
    "...that would require not pissing people off so badly..."

    And, if your mere existence as a non-Muslim is sufficient to piss them off enough to blow you and themselves up, your response is what? To simply convert to avoid being the pisser? M'thinks not. They already want to kill me just because of what I do or don't believe. So, give me a plan -- an intelligent one -- that allows me to remain me and deal with those people.
  • by hackstraw (262471) * on Friday January 26, 2007 @09:04AM (#17767682)
    At home, with their parents who can teach them the importance of drinking responsibly while they are still at home.

    The problem is with the parents/parenting to begin with.

    Americans are pretty psychotic with respect to things like mistakes, moderation, and honest communication.

    Instead of these things, we like harder rules and harder punishments. Things like zero tolerance, mandatory minimums, 3 strike rules, police roadblocks.

    There is a saying that goes something like "The firmer grip you use, the faster the the stuff squirts between your fingers". This is what is happening.

    I live in one of the most policed conservative states in the US, and it sucks. Trust me, once your "in the system" its next to impossible to get out of it.

  • by manifoldronin (827401) on Friday January 26, 2007 @09:40AM (#17768202)

    "Nice little road system you got here -- be a shame to see it deteriorate!" is functionally equivalent to "Nice little candy store you got here -- be a shame to see something bad happen to it!" Which one is the Mafia, and which is the government?
    Ow, come on, I don't like the highway fund holdup scam either, but you are overstretching it. The mafia would actually proactively come and torch your place if you don't pay up, whereas the federal government isn't going to, like, send in the troops and destroy the highways. They are just not going to pay for maintaining it - which is bad in the political sense of an overly enpowered central government, but nothing wrong in the (common) sense of "I'm not paying you if you don't do it my way".
  • by Magada (741361) on Friday January 26, 2007 @10:19AM (#17768878) Journal
    Erm. I'm not an USian, can't fix what is wrong with that great country. As for Europe, legal drinking age is 18 in many places, prostitution is illegal but "tolerated" (gov't demands income taxes but doesn't recognize the occupation as legal) in yet many more, straight porn isn't a crime but some forms of political expression may be. Seatbelts are mandatory almost all over the place. So is health insurance. Gimme a break.
  • by thebdj (768618) on Friday January 26, 2007 @10:47AM (#17769330) Journal
    You sure we live in the same America? This is a country where a child can scream abuse for a spanking, and it is typically on the parents' shoulders to prove their innocence. Legislation was offered up in California to make it illegal to spank children under the age of 4. My mom was raised in a household where you were punished for misbehaving, and my grandfather was known for sending the boys out to pick the switches with which they would be punished. Could you imagine if a parent did that today? You leave a mark on your child and you will probably get a call from social services.

    The real problem is parenting has become some sort of balance between punishment and political correctness. You'd better be careful how you raise your children or the government might come and take them away. What I love is that we now have the same people complaining that the youth do not show their elders respect, are often the same ones who are making it illegal to punish your children. Actually, we might not have needed these tougher laws if people were raised right in the first place.
  • Re:Great... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by haagmm (859285) on Friday January 26, 2007 @10:55AM (#17769474)
    go outside today

    this is not an excuse for the past to ABSIMIMAL winters, but its fucking COLD out there atm
  • by b.burl (1034274) on Friday January 26, 2007 @11:59AM (#17770734)

    Yeah, and it's ok to beat my wife with a stick thats 1" in diameter or smaller, anything larger is abuse.

    Look, to a small child, getting yelled at and spanked is absolutely terrifying. Regular physical and emotional trauma creates enormous personal and social costs. Schools don't use physical punishment, workplaces don't use physical punishment, first world prison systems don't use physical punishment (except in Singapore and the U.S.), and hitting another adult is totally inexcuseable except in self-defense. So why engage in that treatment with the most vulnerable members of society? Does it make them better people? Better at relating to others? Does it foster their emotional and intellectual growth? Or is it just a means of terrifying children into behaving the way we think they should behave and for us to feel powerful and vent our frustrations?

    I find its usually people who hit their kids or were hit as children that steadfastly defend physical assault as a valid parenting technique. Which means they have a fuckload of emotional baggage attached to the issue, and are not a good source of info.

    A much better source is child development psychologists and, to a lesser degree, primate researchers. One interesting study showed the quite dramatic changes early physical punishment had not only on primate behavior latter in life, but on the actual anatomy of the brain (i.e. some structures were stunted, others greatly enlarged). Anyway, I defy anyone to produce evidence that human, or higher order primate offspring benefit in anyway to physical punishment and the resulting terror inflicted on them by those they depend on for survival.

  • by nasch (598556) on Friday January 26, 2007 @12:34PM (#17771274)

    Physically striking anyone is abuse in my book. If you have an employee and he misbehaves can you hit him for punishment? Of course not, you will be charged with assault. Why doesn't this same rule apply to children who are even less able to defend themselves?
    Thank you, well said. This idea that not hitting your children means you're not disciplining them is nonsense. I have never and will never hit* my children, but I assure you they know when they have broken the rules. I was spanked growing up, and I remember the spankings but I sure don't remember the lessons they were intended to teach.
    * spanking is just a subset of hitting
  • by Flying pig (925874) on Saturday January 27, 2007 @12:08PM (#17783818)
    Which should have either been ignored or moderated Troll - it was intended as a slightly provocative joke - some Scot obviously has no sense of humor.

    The current British PM is a Scot. The current Home Secretary is a Scot. The next Prime Minister will most likely be a Scot. The Home Office is admittedly in chaos; we have severe prison overcrowding. The head of the Youth Offending division has just resigned and given an interview in which he complained of the criminalisation of the behaviour of young people and the drawing of excessive numbers of them into the criminal justice system, with no signs whatever that this was reducing crime or reforming the convicted. This guy is no bleeding heart liberal; he is the former head of the Probation Service with an excellent track record. Because he opposed the Government lock-them-up policy, he was told he had to re-apply for his own job. The present Government is attracting the opposition of the judges because it keeps passing new laws to create new crimes, regardless of whether existing ones are being applied. Of course a mess of new laws lengthens trials, increases the number of appeals, increases the cost of justice and creates confusion in the police, who are expected to understand them all, completely and immediately they are passed. My side swipe about Scots passing excessive legislation in England was based on a serious point about Government attitudes and policy.

    When it was clear that the Government had lied over Iraq, I formally resigned my membership of the Labour Party. I learnt last week that a former leading party activist in our area - who had asked me not to leave - has now resigned in disgust.

    Personally, as a very English - Home Counties, Cambridge graduate, working in IT - person, I feel I usually have far more in common with English people of Indian and West Indian extraction than the Scots, and I don't just mean cricket. Their whole cultural and philosophical tradition I find quite alien, more so than, say, the Dutch and the North Germans (and yes, I have read Hume as well as Trainspotting. But I do make an exception for that great genius Macaulay). Now that there is a separate Scottish parliament, there is a perfectly legitimate question to be asked as to why the Scots are allowed to legislate on social laws, education etc., when England cannot legislate for Scotland. Consider the hypocrisy of Scottish MPs who voted for university tuition fees in England while their fellow party members voted against them in Scotland. If it's flamebait to refer to this, then the level of what is allowed in political debate has sunk very low indeed.

We warn the reader in advance that the proof presented here depends on a clever but highly unmotivated trick. -- Howard Anton, "Elementary Linear Algebra"

Working...