Friday, January 11, 2008

Identification Please!

I just returned from a cruise in the Bahamas. Once again, I got to experience, firsthand, the insanity of government regulation. I have always hated the bureaucratic shuffle, but now, since 9/11 we have been subjected to insanity personified. I'm glad the guy who did the shoe bomb thing didn't decide to stuff the C4 into a suppository, else we'd be getting a proctological exam at the airport. It's almost that bad anyway. Take your shoes off, coins, cellphones, take your laptop out of the bag (used to have to turn it on), etc. Now, being a retired cop, it boggles my mind that the US Government doesn't trust cops to carry their weapons anywhere in the country. I've carried one all over the place, been shot at, never shot at anyone. Some idiot bureaucrat, most likely an anti-gun liberal, decided nobody should carry guns in the air. Even though the president did sign a law a few years ago that says cops can carry their guns anywhere, we still can't. Oh well, it's the government. It's not supposed to be logical, or sane, or . . . .

Next up, getting on the cruise ship was fun. I don't yet have a passport (soon to be remedied), so I had to take a birth certificate with me. Now, the birth certificate is merely a document that has a name on it, and it appears to have been issued by a governmental entity, but beyond that it identifies absolutely nothing. The birth certificate I took was issued by the Baptist Memorial Hospital in Memphis in 1953. That wasn't good enough, it had to be a "state" issued certificate. So, we had to call and get someone to go into the gun safe, retrieve my marriage certificate, then fax it to the cruise line. It seems a marriage license, or one of your children's birth certificates is considered "identification". I AM NOT MAKING THIS UP.

Stay with me now. The cruise line and/or the department of Homeland Security decided that this document is proof that I am who I say I am. It is also acceptable that this document can be faxed to the cruise line. Now, they don't know where this document is coming from, who it is coming from, there is nothing on the document that identifies who I am, and it could refer to anyone. Are you seeing some holes in the system?

Here's another example of "government intelligence" - social security card required. Now, if ever there was an exercise in stupidity, it is using a social security card for identification purposes. Here's a link to a bunch of social security cards you can download, type your ssn on the card, print and there you go.

And we wonder why we cannot protect our borders with these rules being formulated by an outpatient group from a government mental institution. The government already has most people's fingerprints, they certainly have mine. Most everyone has a driver's license, issued by a state, etc. It seems long overdue that we have a system whereby we can quickly identify who is a citizen, and who isn't. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm aware of the "big brother" conspiracy theories, and I also don't want the government micromanaging me. At the same time, I think we need a system that is efficient, does what it purports to do, and lets the citizenry continue about their business with minimal intrusion.


Anonymous said...

You know as well as I it's not about protecting our border it's about making sure business has plenty of cheap labor and democrats and republicans alike are the blame.

Anonymous said...

Well, duh! You are preaching to the choir! It's both parties, and it will continue to be a problem until the masses force the politicians to do the right thing.

I don't know of any other country that has such an "open" border policy. Seal the border, then deal with the other issues.