According to Glenn Reynolds: "Liberty Dog is a minarchist libertarian with Objectivist tendencies, but I can't even get my dog to crap outside."

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Monday, May 16, 2005

Real ID

This week's Balance of Power post about National IDs is up.

It is likely that my posting will continue to be sporadic for a while. I have a couple of new clients and have been out of town most of the last 2 weeks. I am currently making preparations for an upcoming trip to China. I should be leaving in about a month (assuming things go as planned) and will be there for about a month.

In the mean time, I will post what I can. Here is my contribution for this week's BOP post:


The former Soviet Union, Red China, Vietnam. This is not exactly a group that the US should feel comfortable joining the ranks of, but that is exactly what it has done with the passage of the Real ID Act. For all intents and purposes, we will now have a national ID in 2008.

Of course, there will be and have been those who will extol all the great anti-terror aspects of this bill, but this is laughable at best. This will not prevent a single terrorist from carrying out his mission, what it will do is provide a means to track the movements of virtually every legal US citizen above the age of 16 in this country.

You will need this to fly, to take a train, to take a long distance bus, and for who knows what else.

It will create vast databases of information ripe for the picking by identity thieves, which in itself is ironic since its author, James "I think you have no rights" Sensenbrenner, touts this on his website.

It is also yet another assault on the principles of Federalism. Apparently years of the Courts perversion of the Commerce Clause has led Congress to believe the States hold no power of their own. The bill does allow States to opt out, but like the decision to make 21 the legal age to purchase alcohol, there are stiff penalties for non-compliance.

I just don't know what the hell our politicians are thinking. It passed 261-161 in the House and 100-0 in the Senate. Senate Democrats (and those Republicans opposed to it) will, of course, try to defend their actions by pointing out that it was piggybacked onto an appropriation bill for the troops and tsunami relief. That however, is no excuse. They knew it was part of the larger bill and rather than do the rights thing, they cowered like pathetic school girls for fear of being labeled anti-troops if they didn't vote for the larger bill.

I find their actions just as despicable, if not more so, than the clowns that introduced it in the first place. I find cowardice to be extremely unpalatable. Though they probably didn't have the numbers to stop it, they could have voted against it and then defended their actions in the press. Instead, they choose to do nothing, knowing that more than 600 organizations of every political persuasion opposed its passage.

The only bright side is that it does not take affect until 2008. There is still time to stop this before it is put into place. Please write your Congressman and Senators and let them know that this is wrong and will not help protect us.

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Copyright © S Michael Moore 2005