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Administration Wants To Scale Back Real ID Law 317

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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  • Re:DMV (Score:5, Informative)

    by kannibal_klown ( 531544 ) on Monday June 15, 2009 @08:31AM (#28333903)

    I just went into the DMV to renew my license and it was expensive and rigorous.

    I went last month - it cost $24 to renew my license. I had to wait around 20 minutes before it was my turn, and getting my identification in order was a snap since I already had a Passport..

    Hardly expensive or rigorous.

  • Re:DMV (Score:3, Informative)

    by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Monday June 15, 2009 @09:30AM (#28334329) Homepage Journal

    I need a photo, so I'm going to have to visit the DMV for a new license soon. It can also be a PITA in California, but mostly because you have to wait. If you have the old one, getting a new one is easy, otherwise you need a genuine BC (no photocopies naturally) and maybe a social card too.

  • Re:DMV (Score:4, Informative)

    by Sandbags ( 964742 ) on Monday June 15, 2009 @10:11AM (#28334733) Journal

    A hospitol birth certificate isn't hard to obtain, but an authorized state certificate, which keep in mind is also back-ended and validated by information maintained by the SSA and serveral other databases, is nearly impossible to obtain.

    My wife lost hers and we needed it to go on our honeymoon to get a passport. It was a nasty process as they wanted to validate things like the name of the hospital she was born in just to get a COPY of her birth certificate. When I went to get a replacement SS card a couple of years ago and I brough my original certificate, it wasn't a current certified state version, and they made a dozen phone calls to validate my certificate was in fact valid, and then suggested in the future I might want to get an updated certified copy and keep the original for posterity...

    Making a fake is not hard at all, but as soon as they might try to enter that information in their system, if the record in the computer can't be found or is inaccurate, you have to go through an appeals process and several ID validations before they'll issue a licences. They do NOT take for granted what's on the piece of paper you hand them. This isn't the 70's.

    Geting a valid ID created using phony information is very hard... VERY hard. Not to mention the mathing SS card, valid SS record, validated proof of address from utility companies, proof of insurance in that fake name, vehicle registration, and more....

  • by Jah-Wren Ryel ( 80510 ) on Monday June 15, 2009 @10:27AM (#28334917)

    Ding! Someone with a clue. That was my entire point!

    Except that you fell victim to the same groupthink when you made an issue of keeping the details of your special revelation a secret.

    Because those cockpit doors can't be opened without the key, combination, whatever, right?

    They can't even be opened with "the key" as there is no cabin accessible keyhole. They use dead-bolts and cross bars that are only accessible from within the cockpit.
    There is a picture of the one in Delta jets in this article [usatoday.com] - normally it doesn't even have contact with the door, much less a cabin-accessible unlocking mechanism.

  • by Chris Burke ( 6130 ) on Monday June 15, 2009 @11:36AM (#28335855) Homepage

    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 computer, multiple choice questions. Question number one of twenty -- remember, multiple choice -- was "What is your name?" One answer is your actual name, and the other three are names nothing at all like it. Maybe the idea was to prevent fraud by having someone else take the test for you, but to even get to the test-taking point you would have had to give your name and several forms of ID to the clerk. So the only way it would catch someone is if they were so drunk they forgot the name of the person they were imitating in the ten feet between the counter and the test-taking station. Which was sort of a theme for the whole experience, really. Question two was "what is your date of birth?" The remaining questions weren't much harder. If you're getting your TX license and are worried about the test, here's a cheat-sheet for about half of it: "Safe and reasonable speed."

    After that grueling and rigorous exam, then came the actual driving test. Following the examiner's directions, I drove out of the parking lot, took a right turn onto a major but at this time of day lightly trafficked street, went twenty feet to a traffic light, took a right turn into a residential neighborhood with wide but unmarked streets, went around the block where I encountered a single stop sign, went back to the same light, turned left on the green without even having to deal with oncoming traffic because it was a 'T', then turned back into the DPS parking lot. Whew! That was tough! It took all of my not-chugging-tequila powers to make it through. Seriously, I can't imagine how I could have failed the test unless I was so drunk I couldn't operate a car, or was so new to the States that I didn't know what side of the road to drive on. Keep in mind, this location was all of two blocks from a major highway. But checking to see if I knew how to merge, or even if I could go over 25mph without killing anyone, wasn't necessary. Which frankly explains a lot.

    So yeah. Maybe if you had a TX license, getting a license from another state would make it less likely you're a bad driver. But adding a TX license to your driving resume isn't going to add a lot!

  • New Hampshire (Score:5, Informative)

    by ArcRiley ( 737114 ) <arcriley@gmail.com> on Monday June 15, 2009 @11:50AM (#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.
  • by Jah-Wren Ryel ( 80510 ) on Monday June 15, 2009 @12:13PM (#28336399)

    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).

  • Re:DMV (Score:3, Informative)

    by Sandbags ( 964742 ) on Monday June 15, 2009 @04:32PM (#28340215) Journal

    In this state, SC, you do, as well as in both NY and CT when i lived there. NC also does.

  • by ChaosDiscord ( 4913 ) * on Monday June 15, 2009 @07:13PM (#28342077) Homepage Journal

    A terrorist is a person who engages in actions which cause a feeling of terror.

    By that standard the serial muggers who had many people in my home town running around scared were "terrorists." As such, it's a useless definition.

    Intent matters. A terrorists intends to terrorize people with a goal of changing something about the world beyond their immediate crimes. (You need the last clause, otherwise our serial mugger is back on the list, since he very much wants his victims terrorizes so they they cooperate. I've phrased it badly, but I hope the gist is there.) (Come to think of it, we probably need to add something about "by causing or threatening bodily harm." Because I'm not sure that "economic terrorism" or "emotional terrorism" are really useful additions.)

    Measuring intent can be tricky (and thus special anti-terror laws are probably more trouble than they're worth). Did the Tiller's killer intend to terrorize other abortion providers? I wasn't convinced he wasn't just a single crazy would-be vigilante, but now that he's warning that there are other people who will do what he did, yeah, his goal is to terrorize. As for the Holocaust Museum guard's killer? So far I think he's just a deeply disturbed who lashed out at a symbol of his perceived persecution.

    For your major terrorists, there isn't much doubt. When you bomb some innocents, then issue a press release demanding things, yeah, you're a terrorist. When you kill some people of another ethnicity, belief system, sexuality, or whatever, then put up fliers warning "You're next," I'm thinking you're a terrorist.

The last thing one knows in constructing a work is what to put first. -- Blaise Pascal