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Administration Wants To Scale Back Real ID Law 317

Posted by kdawson
from the square-root-of-minus-identity dept.
The Washington Post is running a story on the Obama Administration's attempt to get a scaled-back version of Bush's Real ID program passed and implemented. We've been discussing the Real ID program from its earliest days up through the states' resistance to its "unfunded mandate." "Yielding to a rebellion by states that refused to pay for it, the Obama administration is moving to scale back a federal law passed after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks that was designed to tighten security requirements for driver's licenses... Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano wants to repeal and replace the controversial, $4 billion domestic security initiative known as Real ID... The new proposal, called Pass ID, would be cheaper, less rigorous, and partly funded by federal grants, according to draft legislation that Napolitano's Senate allies plan to introduce as early as tomorrow. ...the Bush administration struggled to implement the 2005 [Real ID] law, delaying the program repeatedly as states called it an unfunded mandate and privacy advocates warned it would create a de facto national ID."
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Administration Wants To Scale Back Real ID Law

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  • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohnNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday June 15, 2009 @07:11AM (#28333783) Journal
    Translation: We know that for the past 8 years this has been pushed to prevent homeland terrorism but you know there hasn't really been any major events without it since 9/11. Also, we've got a lot of other shit to worry about that actually does affect your life more than having to present papers whenever you cross any political boundary inside the United States. You know, like the economy and jobs. We're getting Real ID watered down as best we can and hopefully it'll just kind of deflate and go away but there's some asshole Republicans left like Lamar Smith in Texas and Sensenbrenner in Wisconsin that like to say things like:

    We go right back to where we were on Sept. 10, 2001. Maybe governors should have been in the Capitol when we knew a plane was on its way to Washington wanting to kill a few thousand more people.

    You hear that? The lawmakers that take us to war were actually in danger of physical harm themselves! Imagine that! But their voice, urgency and argument are getting pretty pathetic now that it's been eight years and no such thing has reoccurred. The fear card isn't so strong these days. "You might lose your house and/or job" seems to worry people more than "the odds are 1:10,000,000 that a terrorist may kill you in an extremely contrived scenario!"

    Remember any sort of compromise or rational thought is bad because Sensenbrenner says doing so instantly brings us back to pre-9/11 danger. Beware of this sort of mentality. Beware the men that play with your emotions and speak in absolutes for the world is shades of grey.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Will anyone please accept that maybe all of the money spent for Homeland Security has actually helped prevent post 9/11 homeland terrorism from occurring? Instead of shoving it all to the side as republican war profiteering?

      • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohnNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Monday June 15, 2009 @07:21AM (#28333843) Journal

        Will anyone please accept that maybe all of the money spent for Homeland Security has actually helped prevent post 9/11 homeland terrorism from occurring? Instead of shoving it all to the side as republican war profiteering?

        You may very well be right. Nowhere in my post did I say that it didn't. What I said was that we have gotten along for 8 years just fine without a Real ID. However painful it is for me to say this, TSA & DHS are here to stay. If they or the NSA wiretapping or whatever encroachments on our rights and privacy condoned have prevented homeland terrorism then good for them. I don't like all of those things but I cannot say one way or the other that they haven't worked.

        But that's not what this is about. This is about people trying to push it even further. Do you just write them a blank check in the name of security? Do you just offer up all your rights on the spot and roll over for them? Let me quote the article:

        Supporters saw a slimmer measure as better than nothing. But critics said the changes gut the law, weakening tools to fight fraud and learn whether bad drivers, drug runners or counterfeiters have licenses in more than one state.

        My GOD! Bad drivers are running free across state borders! Here's $50 million dollars of tax payer money. Get them! At all costs! What? You need me to carry a Real ID along with my other ID and birth certificate and registration? Ok, whatever you say!

        I call for a halt to Real ID or Pass ID or whatever until we see a need for it.

        • by badfish99 (826052) on Monday June 15, 2009 @08:12AM (#28334165)

          Given that a driving licence is supposed to be proof of your ability to drive, I would have thought that the more licences a person could obtain from different states, the less likely it would be for that person to be a bad driver.
          Or doesn't the driving licence in your country require passing a driving test, as it does in mine?

          • Given that a driving licence is supposed to be proof of your ability to drive,

            If that were true, at least 1/3 of the people in my area would be removed from the road for their inability to drive in something close to a safe or competent manner.
          • In the UK at least, it's become proof of your ability to pass an arbitrary test of which the tutor knows exactly what will be tested on (in the limited time available) due to prior knowledge of all test routes in the area.

            A prime example of "teaching for the test" is that my girlfriend was never, ever taught how to reverse bay-park as there are no bay-parking areas on any test route where we live. She can only put a car in a parking space forwards, and has to get me to reverse out of it for her. I am tryin
            • I'm not sure how well I'd be able to back in to a parking space (assuming that's what "reverse bay-park" means), since I haven't done it in years, but not being able to back out of a parking space? Shouldn't she have to do that about as often as going in to a parking space? How do you learn to get in to a parking space without learning how to get out?
              • She hunts around car parks for a space she can pull straight through to the other side and go out forwards.

                She's a remarkably good driver in general; Even parallel parking is done in one or maybe two attempts (to straighten up / get a little closer to the curb), but this one instance of having to judge traffic distance and speed, assess distance from an obsticle on both sides of the car, and also remember that turning is reversed when going backwards is just not something she learned. Thankfully, I was tau
            • At least you still HAVE tests. I don't know how it is in other states, but here, you don't even have to TAKE a driving test. You don't even have to take driver's ed. You just have to take a course on-line (or have mommy or daddy say they taught you and you know how to drive.) Then you just take the writen (which you can also take online.)

              Needless to say I've seen driving habits getting worse and worse--it's amazing there isn't at least 2-3x the number of accidents between crazy drivers and/or cell phone tak

          • by jonwil (467024)

            One of the reasons for Real ID was because some state drivers licenses were too easily to fake. And in some states, the identity checks you have to take to get the license were too lax. (i.e. the "can you drive" parts were more important than the "are you who you claim to be" parts)

            By requiring minimum standards for license design and features and for identity checks, it makes it harder for people to get fake drivers licenses to then use as ID in the many places where you DO have to show ID such as entering

            • driver's licenses (Score:3, Insightful)

              by falconwolf (725481)

              One of the reasons for Real ID was because some state drivers licenses were too easily to fake. And in some states, the identity checks you have to take to get the license were too lax. (i.e. the "can you drive" parts were more important than the "are you who you claim to be" parts)

              Guess what? A driver's license is supposed to say you can drive, not you are who you say you are. Social Security numbers too are used as ID, heck at least some states require a Social Security card to get a license, but they w

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Chris Burke (6130)

            Or doesn't the driving licence in your country require passing a driving test, as it does in mine?

            LOL. Oh yeah, I had to take a driving test to get my TX license. It was a complete joke, literally in the sense that I would tell the story of it at parties for laughs. Which, as far as I can tell, was the purpose of it because it sure wasn't to make sure I was safe on the road. Part of a campaign to lighten the image of DPS, I would imagine.

            First came the exam, which was sad in its own way. Given by a com

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by zephris (925151)
          It's still a little early for me so unless sleep is playing tricks on my memory... As I recall, Real ID was supposed to make it harder for terrorists to cause problems here in the US. To quote you quoting the article: "But critics said the changes gut the law, weakening tools to fight fraud and learn whether bad drivers, drug runners or counterfeiters have licenses in more than one state." What the hell? Using a law designed to fight terrorism in order to prosecute a civilian who does something that is, at
          • by peragrin (659227)

            Do not look at the intentions of a law think only try to realize the truth of how that law will be abused by those who use that law.

            Real ids would have become papers please. Personally it would be wiser to standardize the states information.

      • by plague3106 (71849)

        Fine, prove that there was not attack because of it, and prove there would have been an attack had we not spent the money. Then I'll accept it. But the reality is that anything stopped was through the old traditional channels which existed pre-9/11.

        • But the reality is that anything stopped was through the old traditional channels which existed pre-9/11.

          Whoa, whoa, whoa. That's a much stronger statement than the GP's. And you offer just as much evidence (none).

      • by twostix (1277166) on Monday June 15, 2009 @08:55AM (#28334573)

        No.

        All this relaxed talk by Americans of "homeland" this and "papers" that as though it's just another day at the office makes me little sick btw.

        Our great friend the US of A teetering on the edge of becoming the monster that it once so valiantly wrestled. Fortunately something, a single thread perhaps, keeps holding it back...but for how much longer?

        Tune in over the next few years to find out.

      • by Rycross (836649) on Monday June 15, 2009 @11:12AM (#28336397)

        No I won't, because foreign terrorist attacks on mainland US were pretty much non-existent in the years leading up to 9/11 too. The way the Republicans talk, you'd think the US was a war-zone leading up to 9/11. Most of the "terrorism" we have encountered pre-911 has been rare, and against our military assets in Middle Eastern nations. And we shouldn't even have our military assets there in the first place.

        Peddle your fear elsewhere. Your tiger repellent is just a plain rock.

    • by morgan_greywolf (835522) on Monday June 15, 2009 @07:31AM (#28333901) Homepage Journal

      The thing is that security is no better now than it was before 9/11. People can still sneak things onto airplanes. In fact, the last two times I have flown, I have, entirely by accident, smuggled two knives onto an airplane. Note that these were simply a "multitool"-type knife that I use for taking computers apart when I have no other tools available, but they were still knives, still not allowed, and still, according the DHS, a security risk. Yet twice TSA screeners missed it. I myself didn't even realize it was stuck in my usual carry on (I won't say how or why it was missed because that information can be misused) -- I thought it was lost. But what if I had been a terrorist, fully aware of the knife?

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by maxume (22995)

        At worst, you might have killed a few passengers and made flying even more inconvenient for everybody else. If you chose your flight poorly, a marshal probably would have subdued you and you would be awaiting trial (I don't really have any sense of how quick they are to shoot...maybe you would be dead).

        • by Phroggy (441) <slashdot3NO@SPAMphroggy.com> on Monday June 15, 2009 @09:07AM (#28334693) Homepage

          At worst, you might have killed a few passengers and made flying even more inconvenient for everybody else. If you chose your flight poorly, a marshal probably would have subdued you and you would be awaiting trial (I don't really have any sense of how quick they are to shoot...maybe you would be dead).

          Marshall, shmarshall. The other passengers would have whooped your ass, regardless of what sort of weapon you managed to smuggle on board. This is why 9/11 cannot happen again: the public is now aware that some hijackers may be suicidal terrorists, which means "sit down and shut up" may not be the best strategy to ensure survival. Flight 93 [wikipedia.org] marked the beginning of this change, but they figured it out too late to save the plane; any future hijacking attempts will be less successful.

          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by ckaminski (82854)
            I'll never forget my first flight after 9/11. It was to a karate camp in Norfolk, VA (not the place to be walking through with weapons). Where Boston had ANG folks with puny little sidearms guarding the gates, the guys in Norfolk had big bad military folk with huge M4s and a serious disposition (I like guns, I just don't like other people having bigger guns than me). Anywho, we sit on this little puddle-jumper, and my instructor sits in the front row, pulls out a Black Belt Magazine, crosses his legs and
      • by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 15, 2009 @08:12AM (#28334155)

        I have carried a one inch blade with me every time I've flown. It always passes without question, even though I put it in plain view in the X-ray bin. The I think the reason is it doesn't look like a knife so they miss it (human nature being what it is and they having to scan thousands of passengers a day). But then again, there was one time a screener picked it up, inspected it and put it back in the X-ray bin without a question. So maybe it's not that they just keep missing it.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Jah-Wren Ryel (80510)

          I have carried a one inch blade with me every time I've flown. It always passes without question, even though I put it in plain view in the X-ray bin.

          The rules include a very difficult to parse list that says scissors with up to 4 inch blades are allowed, it is easy for someone to read it as all blades up to 4 inches are allowed.

          Here, on Page 5 [gao.gov]

          Description of Prohibited Items
          Axes and hatchets; bows and arrows; ice axes/ice picks; knives of any length, except rounded-blade butter and plastic cutlery; meat cleavers; razor-type blades, such as box cutters, utility knives, and razor blades not in a cartridge, but excluding safety razors; sabers; scissors, metal with pointed tips and a blade length greater than 4 inches as measured from the fulcrum; swords; throwing stars (martial arts).

      • The thing is that security is no better now than it was before 9/11. People can still sneak things onto airplanes. In fact, the last two times I have flown, I have, entirely by accident, smuggled two knives onto an airplane. Note that these were simply a "multitool"-type knife that I use for taking computers apart when I have no other tools available, but they were still knives, still not allowed, and still, according the DHS, a security risk. Yet twice TSA screeners missed it. I myself didn't even realize it was stuck in my usual carry on (I won't say how or why it was missed because that information can be misused) -- I thought it was lost. But what if I had been a terrorist, fully aware of the knife?

        I was traveling with a stop over in Chicago a few years back. In my bag was a hand-made Nepali singing bowl (a musical instrument). Mind you, it was quite large and took up most of the bag, and is made of an alloy of 5 types of metal. The first time I went through security nobody noticed it. Then I went back outside for a smoke and had to go through security again. *This* time the scanner guy watching his little TV waved his arms frantically for all the other securty to run over and check out the bag.

      • by Ioldanach (88584) on Monday June 15, 2009 @08:38AM (#28334405)

        But what if I had been a terrorist, fully aware of the knife?

        You're buying into the security theater paradigm. Before 9/11, hijackings were kidnapping and ransom situations in the US. If you wanted to survive, you kept a low profile and didn't rock the boat, and odds were everything would be fine. Out of 200 people they might kill one or two, so your odds of being that one were low enough that resistance was not a good idea. 9/11 changed all that. Now the possibility that everyone might be killed is very very real, so terrorists are likely to see an overwhelming resistance if all they could get on board were knives or possibly even a couple small firearms.

        I honestly think that a modest knife, say 3" or less, presents no substantial hijack threat.

        • Niceidea, but you're assuming that there would be some person who would choose to be the first to confront them. By any chance is your name "Meatshield"? Because mine isn't.

          Self preservation aside, there's also that the Britain's Got Talent / America's Next Top Model watching crowd are more than likely flabby, unfit cowards who would just end up as a nasty stain, scaring the rest of the passengers into suplication. Nothing quite like seeing a fellow human disembowled in front of you to get everyone to comp
      • I myself didn't even realize it was stuck in my usual carry on (I won't say how or why it was missed because that information can be misused)

        Lol! Just like the "big boys" - I know something so incredibly dangerous that if I let the secret out, the terrorists will kill everyone!
        As if any 'terrorist' worth worrying about doesn't know 10x as many ways to smuggle shit on a plane already.
        Here's one - use an obsidian or a ceramic knife.

        The thing is that security is no better now than it was before 9/11.

        Actually, it is. The cockpit doors have been reinforced. No one is piloting a plane into a building or anywhere else unless the pilot is tricked into letting them.

        But what if I had been a terrorist, fully aware of the knife?

        You'd be able to cut a few people, maybe kill them, b

      • In fact, the last two times I have flown, I have, entirely by accident, smuggled two knives onto an airplane

        A couple months ago, I went on my first business trip for the place I work. They sent me to Houston, Texas. Before I went, every said "be sure to eat some BBQ". I did my best, but the hours were stupidly long, and the only good BBQ place was a cab-ride away. But on the last day, everyone piled into a cab and went out for some awesome, awesome BBQ. I got an extra sandwich with BBQ sauce to have on the

      • by twostix (1277166)

        A piece of plexiglass can be sharpened equally as sharp as a metal knife.

        A ball point pen can be turned into a small gun that can kill.

        A length of cotton double wrapped can strangle someone.

        It's not possible to stop people smuggling deadly weapons on board, as nearly any object can be used to hurt or maim. And if a maximum security prison can't stop smuggling, then neither can an airline. If they can then get the airlines to run the prisons.

        • by RJFerret (1279530)

          I remember my father laughing at all the prohibitions when they were being implemented.

          A plastic pocket comb IS a knife with serrated edge, easily capable of slicing someone's neck open with no modification/preparation at all.

          Meanwhile if you "disarm" everyone who could prevent someone who managed to be better armed, you've just enabled them by inhibiting "us".

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Translation: We know that for the past 8 years this has been pushed to prevent homeland terrorism but you know there hasn't really been any major events without it since 9/11. Also, we've got a lot of other shit to worry about that actually does affect your life more than having to present papers whenever you cross any political boundary inside the United States. You know, like the economy and jobs.

      No, translation: The previous Administration wasn't able to get many states on board with this as it exists, so we're going to try watering it down a little. Once everybody's on board with this we can ramp it up to the real deal.

  • not dead yet? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 15, 2009 @07:12AM (#28333787)
    The fundamental issue to having reliable, un-forged ID cards has nothing to do with federal standards. Instead it has everything to do with the drinking age. As long as the legal drinking/smoking ages are higher than the age at which an individual can figure out who to make/get a fake ID, there will be no security provided by an ID card. This is why having a passport actually makes sense. no one goes to the bar on their passport (foreign exchange students aside.) So, a good fake DL can be obtained for $100 near almost any college campus... but a good fake Passport? I'm not sure I'd even know where to begin asking for one, since I'm not a spook. This is of course predicated on the idea that you even believe having a reliable ID card system is a 'good' thing... That is a point that basically can't be argued, either you're for or against it based on a ideological differences. But until the policy makers acknowledge the issue of technical standards being circumvented by clever 15 - 19 year olds every year as technology improves, no standard that they propose will have the effects they think they want.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by sakdoctor (1087155)

      Could god create an ID card so secure, that it was unforgeable [wikipedia.org]?

    • Well, if the end goal is difficult-to-forge and reliable ID, surely the stricter Real ID requirements were better. After all, if a bartender scans your ID and it doesn't hit in the database, you can tell it's not a legit ID, regardless of how nice the physical document mimics real ones.

      On top of that, having actual standards which the states apply to documentation they'll accept that establish your identity is a good thing. I realize there's a limit to how well we can check these things, but putting up
    • by Sandbags (964742)

      BS Man. The drinking age thing is not to prevent people under 21 from drinking. Mostly, to be honest, it's about people in their 30s wanting to be CERTAIN the girl they're hitting on is really 20 something, and not some 18 year old. Kids and bars don't blend well. Also, its a way to control merchants, make some extra tax money, andf in general just a measure of control.

      But saying the drinking age is why we're making a stronger ID card??? No, that's about border access, illegal drivers, and illegal immi

      • The drinking age thing is not to prevent people under 21 from drinking. Mostly, to be honest, it's about people in their 30s wanting to be CERTAIN the girl they're hitting on is really 20 something, and not some 18 year old.

        Yeah, that makes no sense at all. If you're in your 30's, do you really care if the girl you're hitting on is 18 instead of 21? If you could get into a bar at 16, but statutory rape were still based on age 18, I guess I could see your point, but as it is now, your argument simply isn't logical.

  • Oh? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Spatial (1235392) on Monday June 15, 2009 @07:30AM (#28333899)

    law passed after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks that was designed to tighten security requirements for driver's licenses...

    The last eight years free of collapsing buildings seem to me a great indicator of its implicit uselessness. So why push it still?

    • Re:Oh? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by SirGarlon (845873) on Monday June 15, 2009 @07:41AM (#28333967)

      The last eight years free of collapsing buildings seem to me a great indicator of its implicit uselessness. So why push it still?

      It's useless for preventing terrorist attacks, but highly useful for helping government officials track a citizen's movements. Now they can use that power for good (more promptly serving arrest warrants) or evil (harassing political opponents as just one example). Anti-terrorism is a smokescreen. What RealID proponents really want, and won't stop until they get, is the 24/7 tracking of every person in the country.

      What I say to this is, if you're not doing anything wrong ... then where you are and what you're up to are none of the government's damned business. [findlaw.com]

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Sandbags (964742)

        Tracking? We're already tracked. The Feds have FULL ACCESS you EVERY STATE SYSTEM today, it;s just clunky and expensive. RealID offers no additional access, just a cheaper, more regulated, and more consistent ability to stop fakes. It also provides the ability to track drivers from state to state as not only the feds would get access to it, but each state could look up driver statuses, assign points from tickets, and perform insurance checks, regardless of the state of your issue and state you're stoppe

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      correlation is not causation.

      "I've been snapping my fingers the last 8 yrs too; and so far, no lions have appeared. this stuff must really work!"

      • No Shit. So here's the quandary. The Real ID proponents tell me it is. They tell me Real ID will prevent attacks, as well as whiten my teeth and freshen my breath. So, who am I to believe? I think I'll oppose it, since it never had anything to do with planes flown into buildings (or the prevention of) in the first place.

      • by BobMcD (601576)

        The absence of collapsing buildings isn't merely being correlated, it is observed, verifiable data.

        The hypothesis: Lack of RealID contributed to 9/11's success and implementing RealID will prevent it in the future.

        Evidence in favor: ??

        Evidence against: ??

        Point of interest: It seems completely unnecessary given the lack of any imminent threat.

        So while the effectiveness of the program has yet to be measured, the WORTH of it is certainly in doubt, and there is a very, very high 'why bother' quotient at this

  • by xednieht (1117791) on Monday June 15, 2009 @07:44AM (#28333979) Homepage
    Why not just tattoo a number on people. Hear it worked real well about 60 years ago.

    I'd be curious are people here more apprehensive about the intrusive government or terrorists?

    When can I have my America back?
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by maxume (22995)

      Probably never. Most people don't care and a lot of people that do care don't take it any further than asking rhetorical questions.

      (I'm not even suggesting some wacky revolution like a few fringies here do, I'm suggesting some higher level of civic engagement among people who want to live in a sane society, rather than the yell loudly about possibly scary things society that we have today)

  • Papers please (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Nkwe (604125) on Monday June 15, 2009 @07:45AM (#28333987)

    Commissioners called for federal standards for driver's licenses and birth certificates, noting, "For terrorists, travel documents are as important as weapons." Eighteen of 19 terrorist hijackers obtained state IDs, some of them fraudulently, easing their movements inside the country.

    Since when was a driver's license a "travel document"?

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Well, what do you do with a driver's license? Arguably, travel is the central use of such a document: not having one means not driving a car. If the quotation's right, and the hijackers found it easier to travel with licenses, it's not because anyone was checking for papers at state borders -- it's because they were able to drive a car. That's the fundamental mode of travel in the US. So, yeah, driver's licenses are travel documents.

      On the other hand, they weren't intended originally as all-around ID's

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by badfish99 (826052)
        In the UK we've got a different approach: you need to possess a driving licence in order to legally drive a car, but you don't need to carry it around with you as ID, even when driving a car. Indeed, the last time I was stopped by a policeman, he remarked that it was convenient that I didn't have my licence with me, as it reduced his amount of paperwork.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Alcohol consumption and the driver's license relationship is odd when it comes to punishment for underage consumption. Many states will try to revoke a driver's license for underage consumption even if there was no related driving offense.

        Many alcohol and drug laws go too far to stop big offenses by making minor offenses into a big ones as well. For example, in my state, testing positive in a drug test is the same as possession and results in more jail time compared to other states. And don't get me started

  • Better (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Spazmania (174582) on Monday June 15, 2009 @08:10AM (#28334141) Homepage

    On the one hand, I object to requiring a driver's license for any travel other than driving. General travel documents are one of the hallmarks of a police state.

    On the other hand, I have no great objection to requiring the states to standardize the physical driver's license card so that law enforcement doesn't need to know about the designs of fifty plus different licenses.

    To the extent that Pass ID does the latter, I'm in favor.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by jimicus (737525)

      On the other hand, I have no great objection to requiring the states to standardize the physical driver's license card so that law enforcement doesn't need to know about the designs of fifty plus different licenses.

      Then they should pass a law saying "All states will issue driving licenses in accordance with the following design..... Existing licenses will remain valid until their expiry".

      Quick, easy, relatively non-controversial and the entire damn law can be written in about 2 sentences.

    • On the other hand, I have no great objection to requiring the states to standardize the physical driver's license card so that law enforcement doesn't need to know about the designs of fifty plus different licenses.

      Why? Just because the layout of the ID is standardized isn't going to stop forgeries that cost more than ~$20. If anything, standardizing the design will reduce the price of effective forgeries. Since they will all look the same, all of the forgers can focus on that one specific design rather than designs for multiple states.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by twostix (1277166)

      As far as I'm aware the US Federal Government doesn't have the mandate or authority to "require" the states to do anything like that. Given that it was the states who created the Federal Government and gave it the power to exist to do a limited range of things involving common defense and keeping interstate trade regular in the first place it's not really ok for it to turn around and tell the states what to do.

      But that may just be my naive reading of the highest law of your land, the law that actually allo

      • by Spazmania (174582)

        As far as I'm aware the US Federal Government doesn't have the mandate or authority to "require" the states to do anything like that.

        Then link it to highway funds. Unlike the drinking age, it'd at least be relevant.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Zan Lynx (87672)

        "Unlike say Soviet Russia who had a set of laws outlined in a similar document that stated what the central government could do, but completely ignored them and did whatever it liked."

        No, that's pretty much how the US Federal government works too. But don't say it too loudly or the government will call you a radical right-wing militia terrorist.

  • by assertation (1255714) on Monday June 15, 2009 @08:17AM (#28334199)

    A National ID would not have stopped the American terrorist who recently murdered the Holocaust Museum guard nor the American terrorist who murdered that doctor who performed abortions.

    • Those two guys were not a terrorist who by definition belong to an organized group (key word there) attempt to affect change through fear. The museum dirtbag was a neo-Nazi wannabe who had a habit of this sort of behavior. "Oh but we can rehabilitate him." Sure you can. Let me know how that goes. Oh wait, he killed a guy. Oopsie. And the slime that killed the doctor was delusional. Terrorists never operate on their own. There is always a training and brainwashing hierarchy behind them. Now as for

      • Are you saying the Associate Press doesn't have a dictionary? http://tinyurl.com/m2z8u2 [tinyurl.com]

        Basically the "terrorist" label is used in the U.S. for anyone power holders do not like and who may compromise profits. Animal rights activists who sabotage fur farms but who have hurt no person nor have threatened to are on the FBI lists as "terrorists".

        BTW, the Neo-Nazis are organized at least as well/bad and there are violent extremist Christian/anti-abortion groups. So by your definition they are "terrorists"

  • Right winger voters, soldiers returning from Iraq, and people with Ron Paul bumper stickers because "we have to know who these people are!"

  • by cdrguru (88047)

    I can design my own credit card at Capital One's CardLab. OK, so I want to be able to design my own driver's license, one that is uniquely me. Why shouldn't I be able to do this? Some states are still using licenses that are easily duplicated are freely available for people to fake. Which was the whole point of Real ID in the first place - to bring those states into line because without the Real ID law there was no federal power to say what a driver's license was.

    So now I want my own and one that has a

  • New Hampshire (Score:5, Informative)

    by ArcRiley (737114) <arcriley@ubuntu.com> on Monday June 15, 2009 @10:50AM (#28336055)
    New Hampshire has already passed into law that any federal identification program is unconstitutional with 2007 HB0685 [state.nh.us]. To quote the bill, which was signed into law;

    The general court finds that the public policy established by Congress in the Real ID Act of 2005, Public Law 109-13, is contrary and repugnant to Articles 1 through 10 of the New Hampshire constitution as well as Amendments 4 though 10 of the Constitution for the United States of America. Therefore, the state of New Hampshire shall not participate in any driver's license program pursuant to the Real ID Act of 2005 or in any national identification card system that may follow therefrom.

In seeking the unattainable, simplicity only gets in the way. -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982

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