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American Freedom Under Direct Assault: Homeland Insecurity Bill passed Dec 9

In a chilling act more reminiscent of the now defunct Soviet Union or the Nazi regime of Adolph Hitler, the United States Congress passed legislation December 9th that requires the States to surrender their regulatory rights over driver's licenses and birth certificates to The Department of Homeland Security.
US adopts National ID: Homeland Security Now In charge of Regulations for all US States Drivers Licenses and Birth Certificates

Jonathan Wheeler | December 10 2004

In a chilling act more reminiscent of the now defunct Soviet Union or the Nazi regime of Adolph Hitler, the United States Congress passed legislation yesterday that requires the States to surrender their regulatory rights over driver's licenses and birth certificates to The Department of Homeland Security.

The massive US Intelligence Reform Bill weighed in at over 3,000 pages and though unread by individual Members of either the House or Senate nevertheless passed all of the legislative hurdles needed in order to become law.

President Bush lobbied hard for these provisions, only objecting when Senator Sensenbrenner attempted to require these same provisions for illegal aliens but which the President opposed. This provision was dropped from the final bill.

Beginning in 2005, the Department of Homeland Security will issue new uniformity regulations to the States requiring that all Drivers Licenses and Birth Certificates meet minimal Federal Standards with regard to US citizen information, including biometric security provisions.

Added to currently existing Federal Laws and Supreme Court rulings American citizens when born will be issued a Social Security Number that will be included on their Birth Certificates, along with DNA biometric markers. All birth certificates will also be registered in a Federal Government database maintained by the Department of Homeland Security. No child will be allowed enrollment to schools or be entitled to either State of Federal Government benefits programs without first presenting a certified Homeland Security registered Birth Certificate.

Drivers Licenses will also contain DNA biometric markers and include the holders Social Security Number and be required for receiving and applying for all State and Federal benefits programs. Previous Supreme Court rulings have also upheld State and Federal Law Enforcement authorities right to request Identification from any American citizen, for any reason and at any time as not being violations of their, the citizens, constitutionally protected rights.

Major Banks and credit card companies have applauded the adoption of a National ID system as being important to counter fraud and increasing instances of identity theft. National ID cards with biometric markers will eliminate them from having to issue Credit and Debit cards, which for the first time in US history have surpassed the usage of checks and cash. Utilizing The Department of Homeland Securities centralized federal database, Banks and credit card companies will only require the presentation of a citizens Driver's License to make purchases as all of the persons financial information, including credit and cash balances, will already be known in 'real time'. (The combining of Homeland Security and Banking databases on citizen's balances and purchases, along with their past and present purchasing information, has been allowed under previous Federal Laws including the Patriot Act.)

Also included in this bill is a law to require The Department of Homeland Security to establish a separate ID system for citizens to use prior to boarding airplanes, and which is eerily reminiscent of the Soviet and Nazi regimes dreaded Internal Passport.

Never before in our history have the words of Benjamin Franklin been so correct when he stated: "people willing to trade their freedom for temporary security deserve neither and will lose both".

Today, December 9, 2004 will be one of those moments in time that future historians will look back on and pin point as being the day that the United States of American, and as it was founded by its forefathers, ceased to exist.

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Neocons Are Trying to Convert USA Into A Police State 15.Jan.2005 20:28

saying 'no' to national surveillance cards

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Ridge Seeks Fingerprints on Passports

So in 2005, our passports will begin to include a biometric identifier and an RFID chip. Now Ridge would like to add our fingerprints.

From the Associated Press on 01/12/05:

"If we're going to ask the rest of the world to put fingerprints on their passports, we ought to put our fingerprints on our passports," Ridge told a room full of homeland security experts at a morning speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Asked what advice he would give to newly nominated Homeland Security secretary Michael Chertoff, Ridge added: "Be aggressive. ... It's a lot easier to negotiate with your allies if you've already done what you're asking them to do."

Ridge made the assertion just before he was to take off on a trip to build security ties with the European Union.


A Bill in the US Congress that Opponents of the National ID should get behind
Text of H.R. 220 - the Identity Theft Prevention Act.

Excerpts from Representative Ron Paul's (Republican - Texas) comments before the House International Relations Committee in introduction of this bill:

Mr. Speaker, today I introduce the Identity Theft Prevention Act. This act protects the American people from government-mandated uniform identifiers that facilitate private crime as well as the abuse of liberty. The major provision of the Identity Theft Prevention Act halts the practice of using the Social Security number as an identifier by requiring the Social Security Administration to issue all Americans new Social Security numbers within five years after the enactment of the bill. These new numbers will be the sole legal property of the recipient, and the Social Security administration shall be forbidden to divulge the numbers for any purposes not related to Social Security administration. Social Security numbers issued before implementation of this bill shall no longer be considered valid federal identifiers. Of course, the Social Security Administration shall be able to use an individual's original Social Security number to ensure efficient administration of the Social Security system.

Mr. Speaker, Congress has a moral responsibility to address this problem because it was Congress that transformed the Social Security number into a national identifier. Thanks to Congress, today no American can get a job, open a bank account, get a professional license, or even get a driver's license without presenting his Social Security number. So widespread has the use of the Social Security number become that a member of my staff had to produce a Social Security number in order to get a fishing license!

One of the most disturbing abuses of the Social Security number is the congressionally-authorized rule forcing parents to get a Social Security number for their newborn children in order to claim the children as dependents. Forcing parents to register their children with the state is more like something out of the nightmares of George Orwell than the dreams of a free republic that inspired this nation's founders.

Congressionally-mandated use of the Social Security number as an identifier facilitates the horrendous crime of identity theft. Thanks to Congress, an unscrupulous person may simply obtain someone's Social Security number in order to access that person's bank accounts, credit cards, and other financial assets. Many Americans have lost their life savings and had their credit destroyed as a result of identity theft. Yet the federal government continues to encourage such crimes by mandating use of the Social Security number as a uniform ID!

This act also forbids the federal government from creating national ID cards or establishing any identifiers for the purpose of investigating, monitoring, overseeing, or regulating private transactions among American citizens. At the very end of the 108th Congress, this body established a de facto national ID card with a provisions buried in the "intelligence" reform bill mandating federal standards for drivers' licenses, and mandating that federal agents only accept a license that conforms to these standards as a valid ID.


In addition to forbidding the federal government from creating national identifiers, this legislation forbids the federal government from blackmailing states into adopting uniform standard identifiers by withholding federal funds. One of the most onerous practices of Congress is the use of federal funds illegitimately taken from the American people to bribe states into obeying federal dictates.

posted by ~ B ~ @ 1/13/2005 09:35:38 AM PERMALINK 1 comments
Thursday, December 30, 2004
Drivers' Licenses Now a Tool for Homeland Security
From the Kansas City infoZine:

"At least 13 states now use some form of biometric - or body measurement - technology to verify the identity of those renewing or replacing drivers' licenses, according to NCSL.

Biometrics software takes photographs or scans facial features, retinas or fingerprints and quantifies that information into mathematical algorithms. Facial biometrics quantify the distances between major points such as the eyes, nose or temples, and fingerprint biometrics quantify the distances between points on the hand. Scans of the thumb or other physical features can be crosschecked with existing databases to verify identity.

California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Oklahoma, Nebraska, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Nebraska, New Jersey, South Carolina, Texas, West Virginia and Washington now use biometric technology."

posted by ~ B ~ @ 12/30/2004 02:27:38 AM PERMALINK 0 comments
Saturday, December 18, 2004
Bush Signs Bill to Reorganize Intelligence Gathering After 9/11
As reported by Bloomberg News:

December 17 - ``America in this century again faces new threats,'' Bush said at a ceremony in Washington attended by families of victims of the Sept. 11 attacks and members of Congress. ``We face stateless networks. We face killers who hide in our own cities.''

``Under this new law our vast intelligence enterprise will become more unified, coordinated and effective,'' Bush said. ``It will enable us to better do our duty, which is to protect the American people.''


Saturday, December 11, 2004
Passports go electronic with new microchip
From the The Christian Science Monitor:

December 9, 2004 - The passport, issued to officials and diplomats in early 2005 and to the public by the end of the year, is accessed using a reader that "pings" the microchip in order to release the data, much like proximity cards used for workplace ID badges. What prevents surveillance is that "the passport can only be read at a distance of 10 centimeters or less," explains Randy Vanderhoof, executive director of the Smart Card Alliance, an industry association that represents the four companies that produced prototype chips for the State Department.

Concerns of privacy advocates have "no validity," he says. "The purpose of the passport is to create a more secure travel document. The introduction of contactless chip technology has accomplished that."

The response of technology experts and privacy advocates is simply: "Rubbish."

"It's perfectly reasonable that the government wants a machine-readable photograph," says Bruce Schneier, a security guru and author of "Beyond Fear." "I just worry that they are building a technology that the bad guys can surreptitiously access."

The idea that the chips cannot be read beyond 10 centimeters (four inches) doesn't fly with him. "There is no impossible," Mr. Schneier says. "So they [the manufacturers] guarantee that there will be no technological advances in the next 10 years that will change that? It's absurd."

In fact, data skimming is already common in other arenas, says Richard Doherty, research director for the Envisioneering Group, a technology-assessment company out of Seaford, N.Y. "Bluejacking," where someone with the right equipment can hijack your phone, grab your directory, history of calls, and electronic serial number just by walking past you while you're on the phone, and "war-driving," where an individual drives down the street with a computer that maps all the networks that are free along with their IDs - these are already significant security issues, he says.

"This whole world of wireless is one that, yes, it has tremendous convenience, but it's increasingly threatened by a cloud of easy-to-exploit criminal means," Mr. Doherty says.


The State Department says it's just following international standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), under the umbrella of the United Nations. In May 2003, the ICAO specified the RFID and facial biometric or digitized head shot now being adopted by other countries at the behest of the United States. All countries that are part of the US visa-waiver program must use the new passports by Oct. 26, 2005.

From the U.S. State Department:

August 10, 2004 - Although the addition of biometrics to the U.S. passport is not covered by the Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act, the Department of State has been working diligently towards developing U.S. biometric passports. The United States recognizes the benefits of biometric identity verification and strives to remain at the forefront of international travel document security. By the end of 2005, all domestically produced U.S. passports will be biometric passports.


Thursday, December 09, 2004

The text of the bill that has been sent to the President's desk awaiting signature, can be viewed at this link to the House of Representatives website.

Section 7212 is what contains the language dealing with driver's licenses, state ID cards and birth certificates.


Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Bill passage a victory for 9/11 families
From the 12/08/04 edition of Newsday:

The intelligence reform bill prompted by the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks passed the House of Representatives last night, setting the stage for final congressional approval and a White House bill-signing ceremony.

The GOP-dominated chamber had been the biggest stumbling block to the measure's approval, effectively thwarting an attempt to win passage last month - a move that surprised even President George W. Bush who thought he had lined up enough votes.

But unlike that last-minute derailment, the legislation sailed through the House last night - 336-75 - and was expected to be approved by the Senate today.

No National ID summary:

The driver's license language has been watered down a bit in this bill from the original House and Senate versions. Language requiring states to join the DLA has been removed. However, just like the agreements that it replaces, it is expected that all 50 states will eventually join.

1. Social Security Number is our National ID
2. Attempts to tie to our SS# to government issue IDs are even worse
3. Biometrics in addition the above are even worse


Tuesday, November 23, 2004
Lawmakers Hold Out Hope for 9/11 Bill
From the Associated Press:

"For us to do the bill in early December it will take significant involvement by the president and the vice president," said Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn. "It will take real focus on their part."

At a news conference after an economic summit in Chile, Bush said: "I was disappointed the bill didn't pass. I thought it was going to pass up to the last minute."

He said he and Vice President Dick Cheney had talked with key members of the House and "it was clear I wanted the bill passed." He did not respond directly to a question about whether opposition from Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld contributed to the deadlock.

Bush noted that Congress would return for another effort in December. "Hopefully, we'll get a bill done," Bush said, promising to work with interested parties. "When I get home I look forward to getting it done."

During a chaotic Saturday that was intended as the final meeting of the 108th Congress, negotiators announced a compromise on the intelligence bill. Hours later, opposition from the Republican chairmen of two committees stymied the legislation, which would create a national intelligence director.

Reflecting Pentagon concerns about the legislation, California Rep. Duncan Hunter of the House Armed Services warned that the bill could interfere with the military chain of command and endanger troops in the field. Wisconsin Rep. James Sensenbrenner of the House Judiciary Committee demanded that the bill deal with illegal immigration.


Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., the Senate's No. 2-ranked Republican, told ABC's "This Week" there was still a "pretty good chance" of an agreement when Congress returns on Dec. 6.

Without a deal, lawmakers must restart the legislative process when the 109th Congress convenes in January.

posted by ~ B ~ @ 11/23/2004 10:53:25 AM PERMALINK


biometric? 15.Jan.2005 21:30

fingerprints & what else?

Just what does "biometric" refer to, besides fingerprints?
This ID card, and access to all of a person's information is quite a nightmare for America. Wake up, people!!!