Biometrics







For those who are still quite fond of their 4th Amendment rights, Ron Paul raised the alarm over on his official Facebook page earlier today that the Senate’s current immigration reform package is a civil liberties nightmare.

The former Congressman and presidential candidate warned that the proposed McCain/Schumer immigration “reform” plan, as it exists now, would usher in warrantless surveillance of US citizens using drones, a de facto mandatory national ID system barring those without it from working legally, increased federal database information on US citizens, and the further erosion of our core civil rights under the guise of keeping our economy “safe” from a mostly non-existent wave of illegal immigration.

Scariest paragraph of Ron Paul’s post: “Harper rightly notes that E-Verify is in fact a national ID card, writing last week that, ‘the system must biometrically identify everyone who works—you, me, and every working American you know. There is no way to do internal enforcement of immigration law without a biometric national identity system.'”

Minority Report could be closer than we think. Open those eyes nice and wide for your iris scan, citizen!





e43f4780a2fc991162bdbf3b2661bdfee1faac7fFrom an exhibition by Raqs Media Collective at London’s Frith Street Gallery, which puts forth that modern biometric identification was invented by a British colonial official in 1858:

Untold Intimacy of Digits is an facsimile of the handprint of a Bengal Peasant, Raj Konai. The handprint was taken under the orders of William Herschel – scientist, statistician and at the time a revenue official with the Bengal government.

It is one of the earliest impressions of the human body taken by a person in power with the explicit purpose of using the trace to identify and verify a human subject.

It was taken in lieu of a signature, to affix the identity of Konai to a document. It was felt, at the time, that subaltern subjects were way too slippery when it came to the presentation of their identities to the authorities.







A dream of governments worldwide has long been to make people carry identification papers or cards, but the United States has always rejected direct attempts to institute such a program. That may be about to change, according to the Wall Street Journal:

Lawmakers working to craft a new comprehensive immigration bill have settled on a way to prevent employers from hiring illegal immigrants: a national biometric identification card all American workers would eventually be required to obtain.

Under the potentially controversial plan still taking shape in the Senate, all legal U.S. workers, including citizens and immigrants, would be issued an ID card with embedded information, such as fingerprints, to tie the card to the worker…