back to article Blunkett: 'The dog howls when I whip out my ID card!'

"Even the dog howls when I bring it home," claimed former Home Secretary and Big Brother Awards Lifetime Menace as he waved his ID card at Privacy International's 20th birthday party last night. Speaking to a not wholly sympathetic crowd, the Menace himself claimed to have been "at least partially converted" to the cause of …


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  1. Tom Chiverton 1


    Except, of course, a picture on your passport satisfies all our international obligations, no need for a super expensive invasive pork barrel of a database.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      Except that it isn't. The US now requires a biometric identification on entering under the visa waiver programme. I believe the UAE have something similar in place.

      1. Mike Richards

        US VISIT program

        The US requires you to provide ten fingerprints and a digital photo at the point of entry. They do not require you to carry that info, every address you've ever lived at and your inside leg measurement on a piece of plastic.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Not quite

          The Americans now require the issuing of biometric passports by a country as a condition of that country's Visa Waiver participation, but they still, at least for now, accept for the VW non-biometric passports issued prior to that person's country switching to biometrics.

          However, "biometric passport" just means conforming to the ICAO standard, which is simply a digital photo of the bearer on the passport's RFID chip. No need for fingerprints, no need for databases beyond what's already in use for passport issuing.

          1. fatchap


            Are you sure it needs to be in an RFID chip? I thought that the machine readable strip would suffice.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Big Brother

        Balls to the USA

        I've no intention of travelling to the US, the UAE, Japan, or anywhere else that's going to start demanding rectal map biometrics to let people in. And I don't want to risk the security of my fingerprint biometrics just because some other people want to take it up the arse from foreign powers.

  2. hplasm

    He could be waving any old rectangle-

    Why would it matter to him if it's an iD Card or kennel club membership. And Blunkett too, for that matter.

    1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

      1. hplasm

        My point


  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Vigilance is critical, a free press is critical, and a vibrant democracy is essential"

    What have any of those things got to do with ID cards?

    1. serviceWithASmile
      Black Helicopters


      never mind the vigilance or free press. (no offense el reg)

      what has deomcracy got to do with our *government*, let alone the home office?

      yes we can vote... but it's only ever the lesser of 3 (or 2, depending on whether or not you believe BBC breakfast news) evils.

      i vote for anarchy. let's face it, it has to be better than a rectal map. ID not required.

      black helicopters because I know they are coming....

  4. Jimmy 1

    Barking for national security - or something.

    Come on, El Reg, this isn't exactly a 'man bites dog' storyline, is it?

    Barking dog smells rat and barking politician shovels the same old shit.

    Do us all a favour: save the dog and put the control-freak politico out of his misery.

  5. Haku

    ID farce

    This whole ID thing is bloody stuipd and a pain in the arse, recently wanted a 2nd person to have access to my bank account so they went off with the forms I signed to give them access but the bank wouldn't without ID from the 2nd person.

    Nothing wrong with that you may think and you'd be right, except for what ID they would accept:

    Driving licence; it had the address on but no photo, so that wasn't accepted.

    Passport; it had a photo but no address, that was accepted.


  6. seanj

    Some things are critical, like vigilance....

    ... for everything else that isn't (like democracy), there's New Labour.

    There you go Gordon, you fat fuck, there's your campaign slogan.

  7. armyknife

    Better a meritocracy than titles

    So his dog has a greater grasp of the 'rights of man' than he does, seems reasonable.

    1. Jim Morrow

      vote for Blunkett's dog

      Of course Blunkett's dog is far smarter than he is. That just stating the bleedin' obvious. The fucking smallpox virus is smarter than Blunkett. And far less dangerous to society too.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Have you seen Bunkett's wife?

    Nor has he.

    [A joke which circulated in Sheffield in the 1980s]

  9. Huntsman

    I hope that

    ID card isn't a euphemism for penis.

  10. Arkasha
    Big Brother

    Can we send Blunkett

    to Oz? He's such a big brother control freak they'd love him down under.

    1. Steve Roper

      No, we wouldn't

      We've got quite enough control freaks of our own down here, thanks mate. You keep yours to yourselves over there thanks. Cheers.

  11. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Neil Cooper

      Blunkett is clueless

      Sorry but I think that reducing the sentence for cannabis is incredibly stupid and is just one more confirmation of what a clueless halfwit Blunkett is. The system has clearly failed if someone like him can get any kind of responsibility.

      Its beyond doubt that cannabis does physical damage to your brain, not to mention that just smoking (anything) is bad for you anyway. I've got several of pot-smoking friends and they all admit that their memory has been noticeably degraded directly because of it.

      Its already a problem for me that my kid is growing up in a world were that the myth that cannabis is safe is being widely promoted by misinformed potheads. The last thing I need is the law sending factually wrong messages too.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        not sure about that.........................................

        [citation needed]

      2. Steen Hive

        The last thing WE need

        Is more stupid fucking laws sending more stupid fucking "messages". If you want to send a message, write a letter. The dangers of pot-smoking notwithstanding, any law that is all social-engineering and no justice is bad law.

        Blunkett IS clueless, please try to be less so.

      3. M Gale

        Mowie Wowie

        Smoking anything is bad for you.

        However marijuana is significantly less dangerous for you than alcohol. You don't want to smoke it? Boil a couple of grams of the green stuff up in some water and enjoy your tea.

        Yes, marijuana can do funny things to people who already have a predisposition towards schizophrenia. Alcohol can too. If you're schizophrenic, you want to be avoiding strong coffee, let alone anything with a bit of a kick to it.

        By the way, the ratio of getting drunk to getting potentially dead with alcohol is between 1:6 and 1:10. That means if it takes you two pints to get nicely merry, it'll take you at most 20 pints to put you in severe danger of pushing up daisies come the morn.

        Marijuana? 1:40,000 mate. No, that's not a typo. One to forty THOUSAND. You'd need to smoke or otherwise ingest an entire plantation of the stuff. Good luck trying.

      4. The Other Steve


        "Its beyond doubt that cannabis does physical damage to your brain"

        You will now post a link to the long term peer reviewed medical study that supports this opinion. I'll be checking.

  12. Robert E A Harvey

    'The dog howls when I whip out my ID card!'

    funny place to keep it. Still, if yer blind...

    Mine's the one with "insensitive sod" stencilled on the back.

    1. Intractable Potsherd
      Thumb Up

      @ Robert E A Harvey

      Best laugh this week!! It will take me months to get rid of that image, though ...

  13. YumDogfood

    Be Pure! Be Vigilant! BEHAVE!

  14. The Other Steve
    Big Brother


    "Whether anyone in this room wants it or not, we're going to have a biometric passport."

    And just how, precisely, is that related to the previous statement about 'vibrant democracy' ?

  15. Steve Todd

    The US requirement

    is the same as the ICAO, that is a digitised version of the passport photograph. No need for anything beyond that. No need for storing them in some uber database either. There's the OPTION to include digitised fingerprints and iris scans, but they're not a requirement.

  16. John Smith 19 Gold badge

    dog has horse sense

    Not sure what Blunkett's got.

  17. Stuart Halliday
    Thumb Up

    Just as long as I can check it

    I don't mind the Gov. keeping data. on a ID card.

    Just as long I have the right to get a print out every year and the chance to correct it when their database corrupts it eventually.

  18. Anonymous Coward

    ID Cards

    Are a stupid idea, you would have to be blind not to see that...

  19. Guy Herbert

    @ yossarianuk

    Roy Jenkins?

  20. lukewarmdog

    That's not his ID card

    But it's ok.. that's not his dog.

  21. David Sidebotham
    Jobs Horns

    Partial politics

    "Vigilance is critical, a free press is critical, and a vibrant democracy is essential" For anyone who noted the change in emphasis - a "vibrant democracy" has been downgraded. Would this account for the Government performance for the last 5 years?

  22. Armus Squelprom

    Bollocks to the whole stinking thing

    ID cards, biometric passports, national id registers, implanted chips - I don't want any of them, I prefer freedom and dignity and I accept the very slight risks associated with that.

  23. Anonymous Coward

    People need to relise

    The DVLA are the agency responsible for issuing the cards.

    The DVLA are excellent at making mistakes,they issue driving licences and digital tachograph cards with incorrect data and to the wrong peoples addresses constantly, these obvious problems and breaches in the data protection act are brought up by staff but senior managment refuse to acknowledge theres a problem

    If DVLA are issuing ID cards then don't be suprised if yours turns up with someone elses photo or biometric data

    AC because i work for DVLA and could loose my job for telling the public what it needs to know

  24. Anonymous Coward

    My dogs got no nose....

    ...How does he identify other dogs then?

  25. Al Pha

    That's a funny pet name.... call yer cock.

    Coat... I'l get it.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A what?

    In my book, and as it should be in anyone's book who has seriously worked with databases with people's details in it, the only "clean" database is an empty one. If there's people in it, or anything real world related for that matter, There Will Be Errors, live with it, admit it, deal with it. If you can't do that you have no business dealing with the real world.

    So a government twit blathering that one sentence scares me more than the whole senseless rigamole of the ID spin minister.

    The problem with ``biometrics'' like fingerprints and DNA ``profiles'' (they ``profile'' much less and much less precisely than you'd think) are that while they're a reasonable measure to try and find evidence linking someone to traces found at a crime scene, but they're exactly the wrong thing to positively ID someone for ``daily ID'' purposes. Unless you want to treat everyone with an ID as criminal, pre-emptively. So what is the sense in submitting for an ID card, then?

    If you commoditise passports or ``ID cards'' then just like house keys they need to be hard to forge and easy to replace if lost or more likely stolen. Fingerprints as used in the ID circus are easy to forge (any reasonably savvy hobbyist can do it) and very hard to replace. DNA is much easier to forge than the government would have you believe, and hard to replace, but easy again to confuse. Think transplants, blood transfusions, that sort of thing. There are already people with three different DNA profiles in their body. Also note that the current accepted procedure of ``identifying'' means often enough taking a copy of the identity details, which in itself tells the copyer very little useful for the task at hand, but is enough information already to do a full forgery, barring difficulties of producing a believable copy.

    Also note that with electronic-only ID reading, like in those experimental face recognition walk-through portals, a forgery will be believable even on a perfectly blank card as long as the electronics are in order -- ``machine readable'' passports made forgery easier, not harder.

    See there the basic problems inherent in the current ID rigamole: It's too much data for the wrong purpose in the wrong hands with the wrong (largely negative) incentive for ID card holders -- it's a stick to beat you with and if you get forgetful there's another stick to beat you with, if some crook steals your identity it's your fault, and if the government makes an error, you get beaten too. Yay for ``social inclusion''.

    As for the RFIDing of passports world-wide, that's big brother and schoolyard bully USoA for you, and the rest of the yard fucks over its citizens accordingly. I've already decided I'll stay out of that country because of its nosy bastard government, much like you'd stayed out of the USSR or China previously. But with the latter two if you didn't bother them they left you largely alone. Not so USoA. I want an RFID-free passport and accept the USoA related consequences, but I get no choice. That's my government doing me a disservice in worship of the USoA, right there. Carry on government.

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