A British Institution?

Liam Byrne has talked on the subject of ID cards, saying it was 'time to get on with it' and they'd become a 'great British institution'. Oh dear.

Mr Byrne, the immigration minister, said: "In 20 years time, I suspect that the National Identity Scheme will be just a normal part of British life - another great British institution without which modern life, whatever it looks like in 2020, would be quite unthinkable."

Yes, that's the worrying thing, Mr. Byrne. (Not so much the card, but the database which is a compulsory aspect).

Update: No2ID have spotted this story too. Andrew comments:

Mr Byrne fails to mention that this ID card, which he insists will become crucial to my daily life, will not belong to me, and that the Home Secretary reserves the right to take it away from me completely at any time.

Even when I have "my" ID card, the Home Office expects me to have to put it into card readers at doctor's surgeries, post offices, banks, shops and hospitals in order to verify my entitlement to carry out daily transactions. If the Home Office central computer says "No", I will not be allowed to carry out that transaction.

This effectively gives the Home Office a day-by-day, case-by-case veto on many of the actions essential to my daily life.

Here's the crucial question everyone should ask themselves - Do you believe that you will control "your” ID card? Or will it instead come to control you?