(Compulsory) national ID cards

bandit0013 wrote:

You get a lot of convenience (single source updates) and a lot of potential other benefits (medical records). If anything it should make freedom of movement for the majority of people even easier (why not bake your passport into it?)

A lot of convenience? I haven't pulled out my DL, Social Security card, passport or any other form of ID except my NEXUS card to fly in weeks to months. In fact, my SS Card hasn't seen the light of day in eight years and my passport in two. The convenience would be exceptionally meager at its very best.

Phoenix Rev wrote:

my beloved NEXUS card (which is more secure and a better identifier of who I am than my DL or passport)

This made me think. In the US we're already seeing some duplication of effort on the national level, really. We have the standard passport, the passport card, and now the NEXUS card. The latter serves a slightly different purpose because it's cooperative, but a national ID seems like yet another point in a sea of paperwork unless it would replace/include a current ID.

Phoenix Rev wrote:
bandit0013 wrote:

You get a lot of convenience (single source updates) and a lot of potential other benefits (medical records). If anything it should make freedom of movement for the majority of people even easier (why not bake your passport into it?)

A lot of convenience? I haven't pulled out my DL, Social Security card, passport or any other form of ID except my NEXUS card to fly in weeks to months. In fact, my SS Card hasn't seen the light of day in eight years and my passport in two. The convenience would be exceptionally meager at its very best.

Anecdotal data is anecdotal.

bandit0013 wrote:
Phoenix Rev wrote:
bandit0013 wrote:

You get a lot of convenience (single source updates) and a lot of potential other benefits (medical records). If anything it should make freedom of movement for the majority of people even easier (why not bake your passport into it?)

A lot of convenience? I haven't pulled out my DL, Social Security card, passport or any other form of ID except my NEXUS card to fly in weeks to months. In fact, my SS Card hasn't seen the light of day in eight years and my passport in two. The convenience would be exceptionally meager at its very best.

Anecdotal data is anecdotal. :)

Potential convenience is hypothetical. Single source means single point-of-failure.

bandit0013 wrote:
Phoenix Rev wrote:
bandit0013 wrote:

You get a lot of convenience (single source updates) and a lot of potential other benefits (medical records). If anything it should make freedom of movement for the majority of people even easier (why not bake your passport into it?)

A lot of convenience? I haven't pulled out my DL, Social Security card, passport or any other form of ID except my NEXUS card to fly in weeks to months. In fact, my SS Card hasn't seen the light of day in eight years and my passport in two. The convenience would be exceptionally meager at its very best.

Anecdotal data is anecdotal. :)

Of course it is anecdotal. However, I seriously doubt that my experience is unique.

Others can chime in here. When was the last time you needed to produce the following (not carry, but actually produce to get some service or good or satisfy some requirement legal or otherwise):

Driver's License/State Issued ID card
Social Security Card
Passport
Passport Card (if you have one)
Voter Registration Card
Birth Certificate

Here is my list:

DL: At least six months go.
SS: Eight (8) years ago.
Passport: 2 years ago
Passport Card: 18 months ago when an idiotic TSA clerk refused to accept my NEXUS card saying it wasn't a "real ID."
Voter Registration Card: Never produced it since the day I got it. It is in my secure lockbox next to my marriage license and birth certificate.
Birth Certificate: 18 months ago when I had my interview to get my NEXUS card.

So, what convenience am I gained by instituting a national ID program?

bandit0013 wrote:
Phoenix Rev wrote:
bandit0013 wrote:

You get a lot of convenience (single source updates) and a lot of potential other benefits (medical records). If anything it should make freedom of movement for the majority of people even easier (why not bake your passport into it?)

A lot of convenience? I haven't pulled out my DL, Social Security card, passport or any other form of ID except my NEXUS card to fly in weeks to months. In fact, my SS Card hasn't seen the light of day in eight years and my passport in two. The convenience would be exceptionally meager at its very best.

Anecdotal data is anecdotal. :)

That'd be a lot more compelling a comeback if you had more than speculation on your side of the fence.

[Edit: Tannhauser'ed]

Let's see:

Driver's License: yesterday (entering a 21+ area, everyone was getting carded)
SS: Don't even remember when, maybe 7 years ago when I got my job?
Passport: 18 months ago, I believe
Passport card: No la tengo.
Voter regis... hah, not a US citizen, doesn't count for me.
Birth certificate: 18 months ago or so when I got my Nexus

Only reason I've needed ID is when there's any sort of "we have to card everyone" situation, or when I fly. And that's my driver's license. Everything else is pretty much hands-off.

Every time I cash personal checks (which if you're someone who say, runs a small business is frequent).

Additionally anytime anyone cashes a payroll check at a wal-mart, etc.

Any time anyone picks up money transfers like western union

Many states also require the photo ID for voting now, so any time you vote you would need it.

If you attend a college, you are generally issued a redundant photo ID that is used for admissions, dorm access, etc.

Anytime you change jobs you generally show your social security ID along with photo identification.

Anytime you pick up a package at the post office you generally show ID.

Just because your personal lifestyle doesn't require ID doesn't mean that people who engage in other activities, particularly check cashing, don't have to frequently use their ID. Also, if you are pulled over for a traffic violation and you don't have your license, you are in most states REQUIRED to show up in court and provide it, which is a pretty big inconvenience.

You are also completely ignoring my previous post where I listed other systems that could be streamlined and replaced (voter registration, change of address with post office, tax authorities, etc) by a national ID. Also, since we're discussing convenience, I'd like to point out how you just rattled off 5 separate forms of ID that you occasionally need that all have their own registrars and all that you keep track of. You want convenience, replace each and every one of them with one card, one registrar.

Driver's License/State Issued ID card - almost a year ago, when buying some alcohol as a present for my brother.
Social Security Card - Never? The number yeah, but I can't remember ever having to provide the card itself.
Passport - Travelling to the Bahamas in 09
Passport Card (if you have one) - N/A
Voter Registration Card - N/A (all I had to do was give my name/birthday (maybe address too?) since I am already registered to vote in my town. To register I needed a driver's license/state ID or utility bill/government document with my name and current address. I'd need the same documents to change my registration too)
Birth Certificate - Can't remember, but it's been years.

bandit0013 wrote:

You are also completely ignoring my previous post where I listed other systems that could be streamlined and replaced (voter registration, change of address with post office, tax authorities, etc) by a national ID. Also, since we're discussing convenience, I'd like to point out how you just rattled off 5 separate forms of ID that you occasionally need that all have their own registrars and all that you keep track of. You want convenience, replace each and every one of them with one card, one registrar.

One point of control/failure.

bandit0013 wrote:

You are also completely ignoring my previous post where I listed other systems that could be streamlined and replaced (voter registration, change of address with post office, tax authorities, etc) by a national ID. Also, since we're discussing convenience, I'd like to point out how you just rattled off 5 separate forms of ID that you occasionally need that all have their own registrars and all that you keep track of. You want convenience, replace each and every one of them with one card, one registrar.

I am not ignoring your posts. I am challenging the need for a national ID.

Yes, I rattled off five IDs. I already have them. For some, I paid for them. In other cases, they were provided for free.

Since I already have them and there is only an occasional need for them, why develop a whole new bureaucracy spending millions of dollars to create something that is already done but just in a different form?

Seems like a lot of work and a waste of money for some supposed very minor convenience increase, which I am dubious about since I don't really consider it any inconvenience to simply open up my lock box of important papers once in a blue moon to get the document I need.

YMMV.

Stengah wrote:
bandit0013 wrote:

You are also completely ignoring my previous post where I listed other systems that could be streamlined and replaced (voter registration, change of address with post office, tax authorities, etc) by a national ID. Also, since we're discussing convenience, I'd like to point out how you just rattled off 5 separate forms of ID that you occasionally need that all have their own registrars and all that you keep track of. You want convenience, replace each and every one of them with one card, one registrar.

One point of control/failure.

Um, you already have a single point of control/failure for each of those documents. You can't use your DL in place of a Passport and you can't use your passport to drive. I'm not sure that's a reasonable reason to be against it.

Phoenix Rev wrote:

Since I already have them and there is only an occasional need for them, why develop a whole new bureaucracy spending millions of dollars to create something that is already done but just in a different form?

Because maybe people in the future who aren't you might appreciate not having to have 5? I'm not sure how to approach your critique because it's fully centered around your own personal experience. You don't acknowledge that there's a lot of waste and redundancy in the existing system especially when it comes to changing residency, etc?

"Well I've never moved" isn't really much of an argument.

bandit0013 wrote:
Forte wrote:

I can't think of any function an ID card would serve that a driver's license or passport doesn't already... And wouldn't having another card just cost the government more money in administration?

Definitely not. The concept of a well integrated national ID solves many issues that the United States in particular has that many other countries don't. The main thrust of the problem is that with state sovereignty being so highly prized we often duplicate systems and technology 50 times in 50 different ways which is going to ALWAYS be more inefficient than centralizing when it comes to information and data processing.

I am a proponent of the national id replacing passports, driver's licenses, and all other forms of photo identification. I've posted reasons why in various threads, but I'll re-post some of the stronger points here:

1. Duplication of effort is expensive (as stated above)

2. Too often, because systems don't talk to each other well, it requires extra work for information to flow. For example, if you move from one state to another, you have to register with both post offices, update your driver's license, update the IRS to your new residence, update your state tax authorities, update your vehicle registrations, etc etc etc etc. Each of these processes is completely separate and very time consuming. With a well implemented national repository you could in theory update once and have that data flow to all impacted agencies.

I carry my driver's license when I drive. Otherwise, I show my passport for everything.

If a (US) national ID is supposed to replace both, wouldn't that necessitate nationalizing the various DOL/DMV/BMV/BBQ agencies? Or are you thinking each state would issue its own REAL ID-style document? That's not really a national ID, just nationally standardized.

bandit0013 wrote:

Um, you already have a single point of control/failure for each of those documents. You can't use your DL in place of a Passport and you can't use your passport to drive. I'm not sure that's a reasonable reason to be against it.

The passport system is different from the driver's license system. If, for some reason, my driver's license can't be found in the system, my passport will still allow me to travel (though not drive), and both are equally valid for identification purposes (just not their specialized functions) so I could still use my passport to identify myself.

Stengah wrote:
bandit0013 wrote:

Um, you already have a single point of control/failure for each of those documents. You can't use your DL in place of a Passport and you can't use your passport to drive. I'm not sure that's a reasonable reason to be against it.

The passport system is different from the driver's license system. If, for some reason, my driver's license can't be found in the system, my passport will still allow me to travel (though not drive), and both are equally valid for identification purposes (just not their specialized functions) so I could still use my passport to identify myself.

Yes, not for their specialized functions, QED you still have a single point of failure especially considering that driving is probably the most frequently needed form of ID.

clover wrote:

I carry my driver's license when I drive. Otherwise, I show my passport for everything.

If a (US) national ID is supposed to replace both, wouldn't that necessitate nationalizing the various DOL/DMV/BMV/BBQ agencies? Or are you thinking each state would issue its own REAL ID-style document? That's not really a national ID, just nationally standardized.

Yes, I would shut down the DOL/DMV/BMV/BBQ agencies and roll it all into a single service. I see no reason why we should have 50 different BMVs with 50 different policies.

Being that I do a lot of work in the insurance industry, let me tell you all that having to deal with 50 different departments of insurance adds a ton of cost to your insurance policies.

Where would that fall with regard to 10th amendment issues? I thought the reason so many states passed laws blocking REAL ID was that it infringed on the "dual sovereignty" of the states.

I don't think sovereignty in that area makes sense in this day and age.

bandit0013 wrote:

1. Duplication of effort is expensive

The only way this is a relevant point is if you literally take away a state's right to create their own ID. That would require a constitutional amendment.

2. Too often, because systems don't talk to each other well, it requires extra work for information to flow. For example, if you move from one state to another, you have to register with both post offices, update your driver's license, update the IRS to your new residence, update your state tax authorities, update your vehicle registrations, etc etc etc etc. Each of these processes is completely separate and very time consuming. With a well implemented national repository you could in theory update once and have that data flow to all impacted agencies.

Each of these processes is separate because they're all run by different bureaucracies. A national ID would give each bureaucracy an easy way to identify you, but do little else, unless you're proposing the merging of them all, which would really only work for federal agencies. There's a reason the state-level and federal-level exist in this country, and it's not because it's there to inconvenience you.

3. Because systems don't talk, it happens quite often that a criminal can travel across state lines and not be recognized since the data doesn't go with them as they move about. Note that 2 of the 9/11 hijackers were on terrorist watch lists and because the systems didn't talk as they moved about they were able to board planes.

Criminals can travel across state lines because there's nothing stopping them doing so. Unless you are proposing border checkpoints similar to what you encounter at national borders for each state, this is a moot point. The TSA security theater we have today does very little to protect against this, also. Watch lists serve to better slow down the travel of people with unfortunately-similar names and darker skin colors than anything else at this point. A national ID would simply give TSA agents a different card to blankly stare at when you hand them your boarding pass.

4. Americans in general (75%) are supportive of photo id being shown at the polls. However, as pointed out in other threads, there is a known problem with fraud, oftentimes stemming from out of date voter registrations which allow corrupt polling workers to vote for people who are absent. Most modern ID cards are bio-metric capable, so it's quite possible to imagine a system where you swipe your card in the booth and press your fingerprint or use retinal scan for two part identification. This would make voter fraud and poll worker tampering nearly impossible.

There are MANY problems with voting, but the idea of being asked to identify myself at the polls is insulting and startling. So is that 75% number, so you probably won't mind if I ask for a citation? The biggest problem comes from computer-controlled, self-contained, insecure, proprietary (and therefore closed to public scrutiny and accountability) voting systems. The problem here is not the people.

5. We have a huge illegal immigrant population. The biggest reason illegals are here is because unscrupulous employers like to exploit them by paying them under the table wages and not providing them the safety and other required benefits. A bio-metric national id coupled with a compulsory verification/certification by the employer would allow us to draft legislation that would SEVERELY punish employers for hiring illegal workers. (of course this should be coupled with a quick and reasonable temporary worker program for our friends down south, they could be issued an ID with restrictions to ensure they are not only treated according to labor laws but also that they would have to leave the country when their time was up).

There is no silver bullet for the illegal immigration problem. Even a national ID would not solve it. There are people in government with a vested interest in keeping cheap labor around. The national ID will do nothing to these people. Penalties are a great idea, but the people charged with enforcing them probably wouldn't.

6. Information technology in Medicine is one of the biggest ways we can start cutting cost of our healthcare. Access to up to date and accurate medical records regardless of your current geographic location is key to providing the best care possible as efficiently as possible. Tying your medical records to your ID makes a whole lot of sense. (If you were allergic to penicillin and brought unconscious into the ER, would you like that to come up in your records when they swiped your ID?)

The ideal situation sounds nice, but this poses some SEVERE privacy issues.

7. Giving banks and other service providers access to bio-metric verification makes check cashing, ATM use, and other forms of payment more secure.

8. Faking a bio-metric/national id is exceptionally difficult.

9. Most "privacy" rights people don't realize how little privacy they have today. Your privacy would be relatively the same after this.

These are all moot points. #7 is merely a matter of convenience, not security. #8 may be true, but if it can be done, someone will do it. #9 is a straw man, it's not about sacrificing more privacy, it's about regaining the rights to privacy that have already been sacrificed. A national ID does nothing more than solidify a certain loss of privacy.

EDIT:

Oh, and:

Driver's License/State Issued ID card - A few weeks ago, when I flew. Before that, April, when I last flew.

Social Security Card - Geez, I can't even remember... Perhaps when I got my passport, 10 years ago?

Passport - When I went to England, 10 years ago.

Voter Registration Card - I didn't even know this was a thing. This is a thing?

Birth Certificate - Probably also when I got my passport.

Because systems don't talk, it happens quite often that a criminal can travel across state lines and not be recognized since the data doesn't go with them as they move about.

Aha! And there we have the real reason bandit is arguing for national IDs; more control by the national government.

No, thank you. Again: this is of no benefit to me whatsoever. It only benefits the authoritarians.

bandit0013 wrote:

I don't think sovereignty in that area makes sense in this day and age.

Perhaps not, but if you want to go down that route, then it should go through the proper procedures for amending the constitution.

Phoenix Rev wrote:
bandit0013 wrote:

I don't think sovereignty in that area makes sense in this day and age.

Perhaps not, but if you want to go down that route, then it should go through the proper procedures for amending the constitution.

The constitution only says that states have to accept other states documents. It doesn't say squat about the fed introducing one that the states all use.

@NSMike

Yeah yeah, it's not like I expected to convince anyone. Most people against national ids are so zealous about the illusion of "privacy" that they can't be convinced.

/It just amuses me because I've worked a long time in IT and seen many security systems. Your data is FAR more insecure in the hands of these multiple agencies than they would be in a central source.

bandit0013 wrote:
Phoenix Rev wrote:
bandit0013 wrote:

I don't think sovereignty in that area makes sense in this day and age.

Perhaps not, but if you want to go down that route, then it should go through the proper procedures for amending the constitution.

The constitution only says that states have to accept other states documents. It doesn't say squat about the fed introducing one that the states all use.

You would have to change the federal constitution to prohibit the states from producing ID.

@Phoenix- Why? You'd think they'd just stop on their own. Why would they bother?

bandit0013 wrote:

@Phoenix- Why? You'd think they'd just stop on their own. Why would they bother?

If the REAL ID debacle is any indication, it is concerns over sovereignty, privacy, and need. 24 states now have laws on the books that prohibit state cooperation in implementing REAL ID including providing information to the federal government to facilitate implementation. Arizona and Idaho passed those bills unanimously.

If the federal government mandated a national ID, what are they going to do if the states refuse to cooperate by providing information such as driving records?

bandit0013 wrote:

Yes, not for their specialized functions, QED you still have a single point of failure especially considering that driving is probably the most frequently needed form of ID.

You're not understanding my point. My point is that in a system where there are 5 different documents that each serve their own specialized purpose, a failure is less severe. When one of the systems fail, the other 4 are unaffected. If we replace them with 1 overarching document that does the job of all 5, there's only one system to fail, so failures have much more of an impact. If it fails, I can't do any of those 5 things. Before I could still do 4 of them.

Driver's License/State Issued ID card: A couple days ago to buy some OTC allergy medication containing pseudoephedrine.
Social Security Card: Don't remember, probably when I was in college 20 years ago (my SS # was my student ID # BTW. The good old days.)
Passport: Don't have one.
Passport Card (if you have one): About 2.5 years ago on a Caribbean cruise.
Voter Registration Card: Don't remember, probably never.
Birth Certificate: When I was applying for the above passport card at the county courthouse.

Just a question.. If it was all combined into one card/service.... How would you revoke and take back the card if one of those services are infringed in some way?

e.g. A driving ban (you lose your license - it is physically taken off you) or an investigation (police/federal) requiring a travel ban... I'm pretty sure that in some instances they take your passport off you too. Is that just suddenly going to change? Or do you lose your ability to vote and whatnot too by having your card taken off of you...