Half a nation’s records lost? How convenient…

Let’s face it plans for a national ID card, a national ID register, an NHS database and several children’s databases aren’t exactly popular just now. So what does Gordon Brown need to get rabid Sun readers and moronic Mail readers all clamoring for a biometric database? Well, of course, a major security breach. Then he can assure us that once our biometric details are safely uploaded to the national identity register, it won’t matter if the odd CD goes missing along the way because our identities are tied to our biometric data, which is identity theft proof – right? And the Mail and the Sun readers will be hailing the biometric database as a damn good idea and promoting Gordon Brown to God.

Whenever governments are determined to get their way, there’s nothing like a major crisis to get Joe Dumbass public into a right old panic and get them right behind whatever it is Government wants to do. You know the usual stuff like going to war, silencing political dissent, putting innocent people under house arrest and forgetting about them, creating cradle to grave surveillance databases. All the kind of things that we citizens don’t go for unless we can be persuaded that someone’s about to blow us up, steal our identity, did blow us up, etc etc. It worked for Bush and Blair, so why not Brown?

It’s just that it has that Ricin feel to it. I remember when the Ricin plot was gleefully announced, I turned to my colleague and said “oh yeah, like who are they kidding?” And guess what, there never was any Ricin or any plot (not that you’d necessarily know that yet, if you read the Sun) but it got everyone suitably rattled and made the population much more acquiescent in the dismantling of civil liberties and the rule of law. So when something like the loss of the personal data of 25 million people is announced I just think back to Ricin and wonder “what are they really up to?”

Unless of course some nobody clerical officer in the Inland Revenue forgot to post the disks at all and, when reminded by the NAO, trotted out that time honored and well worn excuse, “Well I did send them, they must have got lost in the post”, never imagining the furore her lame excuse would cause…

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