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The Government Internet ID Proposal

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  • by Itesh (1901146) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @12:36PM (#35882198)
    we should have absolutely nothing to fear. Remember, this is all for our protection.
    • by piripiri (1476949) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @12:46PM (#35882324) Journal
      Thank god I don't live in the USA.
      • by MachDelta (704883)

        And that matters how?

        I'm Canadian. I shop online, from stores in the US on occasion. My girlfriend does so quite frequently (You'd think she was a centipede the way she buys shoes...).
        If/When this "Internet ID" thing comes around, it's going to mean one of two things for us:
        A) No ID? No shoppy-shoppy. Please return to your local mall to be price gouged by Canadian retailers who will charge you a 20% premium for no apparent reason even though our dollar is once again stronger than the greenback. PS: Your own

        • by Obfuscant (592200)

          If/When this "Internet ID" thing comes around, it's going to mean one of two things for us: A) No ID? No shoppy-shoppy. Please return to your local mall to be price gouged...

          Yes, because certainly there will be no entrepreneurs willing to put up an online shop that doesn't worry about the "Internet ID thing" and still uses simple credit cards, because nobody will want to profit from shoppers who are being turned away from other online stores that decide they want you to use the voluntary Internet ID. No, nobody will go after that low hanging fruit. Even though there are scads of companies already seeking the cash of the online shopper for things that are illegal in the US (pre

      • by g0bshiTe (596213)
        That's fine cause most probably you live in a country that the US could extradite you from due to your online habits. Thank Amerikan Korporate greed for making this nation great (for them, not us).
      • Depending on the country, your privacy probably suffered equally egregious breaches years ago.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      A private business doesn't have the special right to employ coercion (meaning physical force) as a business model. Government does have that special right -- in fact, that special right is precisely what defines government and differentiates government from everybody else.

      The point is that no private organization could ever cause as much destruction and injustice as government -- it's just not logically possible. Even when government employs coercion (wrongly) on behalf of a private organization, it is gove

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Mr. Slippery (47854)

        A private business doesn't have the special right to employ coercion (meaning physical force) as a business model.

        Of course it does. A private business requires property, and property is force: the right to call upon government force to control someone else's access to or use of space or resources or even information. (Or, if you like a more rough-and-tumble model, the right to be immune to government prosecution after initiating one's own use of force to control someone else's access.)

        In a sane, function

      • by vertinox (846076)

        The point is that no private organization could ever cause as much destruction and injustice as government -- it's just not logically possible. Even when government employs coercion (wrongly) on behalf of a private organization, it is government that ultimately holds the key, not the private organization.

        PRO:TIP

        Poor credit ratings can hurt a person far worse than a IRS audit can these days. Why?

        Because employers, apartments, housing, cars, and to some regard school is now determined by your credit.

        (not that its harder to hire people with good credit these days, but its still considered a black mark)

        And credit is purely a three corporation deal not handled by the government.

        So if they wanted to for some unknown reason, they could blackball you from ever getting a good job again unless you play by their rules

    • by blair1q (305137)

      You've had a driver's license and Apple's location tracking for some time now.

      What has happened to you that the rest of us should fear?

  • by mschaffer (97223) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @12:39PM (#35882230)

    How will this prevent identity theft? Seems to me that it will make it potentially easier to steal someone's identity.

    • by vlm (69642)

      How will this prevent identity theft? Seems to me that it will make it potentially easier to steal someone's identity.

      I don't think you understand who the government serves. They serve the corps, not us. From the point of view of the corps, they would no longer have any liability for identity theft. Follow the detailed fedgov procedure, the fedgov authenticates them, the corp is not liable for mistakes. Also the fedgov will prosecute for criminal fraud against the fedgov at their expense, rather than the corp paying to prosecute as a civil court thing. That is how it protects against identify theft.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @12:40PM (#35882242)

    I really like this story when people insinuate that the government is an utter failure at anything it touches. Stolen from Usenet long ago, I believe.

    This morning I awoke to my alarm powered by electricity generated by the public power monopoly regulated by the US Dept. of Energy. I turn on the TV to one of the FCC regulated channels to see what the National Weather Service of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration predicts the weather to be using satellites designed, built, and launched by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration

    I watched this while eating my breakfast of US Department of Agriculture inspected food and taking the drugs which have been determined to be safe and effective by the Food and Drug Administration. I also note that the US is still a sovereign nation, having not been invaded during the night, thanks to the tireless vigilance of the United States Armed Forces.

    I then took a shower using clean water provided by the municipal water utility. At the appropriate time as regulated by the US Congress and kept accurate by the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the US Naval Observatory, I get into my National Highway Traffic Safety Administration approved automobile and set out to work on the roads built by the local, state, and federal Departments of Transportation.

    I may also stop to purchase additional fuel of a quality level determined by the Environmental Protection Agency, using legal tender issued by the Federal Reserve Bank. On the way out the door I deposit any mail I have to be sent out via the US Postal Service and drop the kids off at the public school.

    After work, I drive my NHTSA car back home on DOT roads, to a house which has not burned down in my absence because of the local and state building codes and Fire Marshal's inspection, and which has not been plundered of all its valuables thanks to the local Police Department.

    Some days we stop to let the kids play in one of the many beautiful parks maintained by the US National Park Service division of the US Department of the Interior.

    I then log onto the internet, developed by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Administration, and post on freerepublic and FOX News forums about how SOCIALISM in medicine [or new ID cards] is BAD because the government can't do anything right.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      And I love telling people who post this story:

      1) Just because the government provides those services does not mean they wouldn't exist without the government. If the state provided all food, does that mean that the absence of the state would result in the absence of food? Presumably many people want nice parks, clean water, safe cars, and so on. When people want things, it generates something called "demand" in the economy. Latent demand for a product which doesn't yet exist is the single biggest driver of

      • by spidercoz (947220) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @01:23PM (#35882832) Journal

        (A contract I have never signed, never seen, and never agreed to.)

        Cute. I'll refer you back to your own first point:

        * If you don't like it, leave!

        • by Shark (78448)

          I may be double-wooshing but that wasn't a point he was making, it is the answer he expects from the very people he criticizes, in this case (if you weren't just trying to be funny), that means you. As such you likely made his point rather than dismissed it.

          • I'm pretty sure that was the idea. Mr. spidercoz was feeding the troll... just he was feeding them poisoned food.

            Well played.
      • by jpapon (1877296)

        The world is a safe place to live because of our wise regulatory overlords. (People can't be trusted to decide on their own what might harm them, but those same people can be trusted to regulate millions of other people using the threat of force.)

        Actually, people cannot. Can you identify salmonella tainted food? Toothpaste that contains lead? Cars that will disintegrate in an accident because of cheap steel? Planes that won't crash because of poor maintenance?

        Saying regulatory agencies aren't necessary because "people can decide for themselves what is safe" is just as logical as saying "police aren't necessary because people can protect themselves".

        I really think we should start calling these "libertarians" what they really are... Anarchists.

        • I really think we should start calling these "libertarians" what they really are... Anarchists.

          Not so fast there. The anarchists don't want them either.

      • by ewieling (90662)
        People who dislike government so much should move to Somalia, where there is no government.
      • by presidenteloco (659168) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @02:20PM (#35883660)

        The "statist" argument I make is that hierarchical governance will establish itself in human society no matter what.
        We are descended from a long line of social animal species and cohabiting with many others.

        Reciprocity is adaptive. It reduces the energy expended for an increment of survival probability.

        Hierarchical coordination of reciprocity is a thermodynamically more stable configuration of reciprocity, because of the information flow topology (1 - n compared to n - n) leading to feasible alignment of goals and actions of larger numbers of social agents, and leading to fewer accidentally oppositional (and energy-wasting) actions.

        You really can't fight this, given the general kind of survival oriented, energy-conserving, socially aware, plan-forming agents that we are.

        So the only choice you have is what FORM (and to some degree what degree) of hierarchical governance you will have. You don't have a choice not to have it. The pattern will impose itself on you no matter what, eventually.

        If you kick out the constitution that is an agreement to have democratically elected hierarchical governance, you'll get some other kind, emerging from the latent empire builders always present in human society. Whether this ends up being a glorified drug-lord or a benevolent but ruthless dictator is anyone's guess, but it will be something, you can be sure of that. It will start out with lots of small hierarchical organizations, and gradually they will coalesce into the largest (federal layered) hierarchical organization supportable by the communication, transportation, logistics coordinatation, and force-projection technologies of the day.

        That one, you guessed it, we will end up calling "the state".

      • by dkleinsc (563838) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @02:24PM (#35883694) Homepage

        I haven't seen the good old anarcho-capitalist argument in a while, but it's easy to take apart.

        Based on your declared philosophy, your desire no taxes to exist, because any taxes that did exist would be an unjust theft. Therefor, the government can't do anything, because in a capitalist economy anything that anybody does is done either for themselves or in exchange for money, and you've just made sure that the government has no money, making them just another guy on the block. Ergo, your tax-free country has no functional government whatsoever.

        If the government doesn't exist or is in the very least rendered completely impotent due to its lack of funds, then the capitalist side of your ideal world also falls apart, because I make a deal with you to buy, say, 10 bushels of apples for 1 ounce of gold, and when you give me the apples the economically rational thing to do is shoot you and keep the gold. And by making many such deals, I eventually acquire both enough stuff and gold to be able to raise my own private army, and before you know it we've got a bunch of warlords with armies running around trying to slaughter each other.

        Even if you don't make any bad deals with people, you still have to deal with the large number of people who don't have anything of value to start with who can and will do what it takes to survive. So at the very least, you end up with large hordes of bandits running around trying to steal stuff from whoever has it.

        With that being my other option, I'll take paying taxes. Nobody likes paying taxes, but it sure beats the alternative.

        • by Korin43 (881732) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @03:48PM (#35884616) Homepage

          If the government doesn't exist or is in the very least rendered completely impotent due to its lack of funds, then the capitalist side of your ideal world also falls apart, because I make a deal with you to buy, say, 10 bushels of apples for 1 ounce of gold, and when you give me the apples the economically rational thing to do is shoot you and keep the gold. And by making many such deals, I eventually acquire both enough stuff and gold to be able to raise my own private army, and before you know it we've got a bunch of warlords with armies running around trying to slaughter each other.

          So you're going to kill everyone who produces the things you want? And no one is going to stop you just because the government isn't doing it? If someone broke into your house and tried to kill you, would you just let them because the police aren't there to save you? If you knew there was no government, you wouldn't get your own protection (buy a gun, pay someone else to protect you, etc)?

      • If there is enough demand for a voluntary-anarchist society, then the market will provide it!

    • Must have been a while ago since they weren't yet 'defending the homeland', nor hiring secret police who say things like 'your papers please.' Nor secretly wiretapping you (with permission from a secret court) because your neighbour anonymously 'reported you' (likely because your dogs barking bothered him enough to trigger a witch hunt). The slippery slope towards a police state is fast approaching the shape and speed of an Olympic luge track (and the U.S. people are Nodar Kumaritashvili [njnnetwork.com]).
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      The story only makes the example that government is involved in every part of our lives. It doesn't mean it does a good job with anything it touches. The opposite of people that insinuate that government is an utter failure at anything it touches, is people who believe government is the solution to everything.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      Except that old post forgot to mention the US post office is operating way into the red, public schools are terrible, the FDA approves drugs that are harmful and makes unprofitable remedies illegal to issue as medicine, the USDA let countless salmonella, ecoli, etc. contaminated foods hit the shelves that killed people, the weather service is never right, NASA wastes money hand over fist and produces surprisingly few results for the cost, the FCC allows decapitation but not boobs, the military is spread out
      • by hedwards (940851)

        The post office would be budget neutral if it could drop or reduce service to rural areas. A normal business would be allowed to charge more money for service which cost more money, but the USPS is required to charge anybody anywhere in the US the same postage. As a result, a helicopter delivery of 1 letter costs the sender the same amount as delivery via horseback, or a quick delivery across town in any major metropolitan area.

    • by erroneus (253617)

      All of those government activities you mention "serve the interests of the people" directly and demonstrably and they do so without the need for removing our individual liberties. (Well, with some exceptions such as the right to buy raw milk... I don't get it... not fair at all.)

      On the other hand, these people tracking measures are implemented by parties whose interests lie in restricting, regulating and even denying our liberty. To make a comparison is simply inappropriate.

      But on the point that "governme

    • by element-o.p. (939033) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @01:17PM (#35882778) Homepage
      In response, I say...

      "TSA"

      QED.
    • Just one minor issue with that quote: Federal Reserve Bank is a private institution.
      http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=8518 [globalresearch.ca]

    • You have a point, but the problem here is that this story falsely implies that government is the only way to provide these services or that it is the most efficient way. That a system functions at all is not a reason not to improve it.

    • The purpose of government is to bring economy of scale to projects that would fail if profit were the sole motivator.

      Voluntary exchange of goods and/or services is not the only way the majority make their "demand" known. More to the point: if the majority wanted a voluntary-anarchist stateless society, we'd have that.

    • by nedlohs (1335013)

      It's a silly story because those very people likely also think that the FCC and the FDA and the USDoA are run badly and doing bad things. That the NWS and NASA would be much better as private enterprises. And that the DoE and the NHTSA are also screwing everything up. The EPA is a bunch of interfering hippies. That the Federal Reserve is either evil incarnate and destroying the entire US economy or a conspiracy by the New World Order Jewish Bankers to enslave everyone (depending on the flavor of this parti

  • That people actually fear that the government is sufficiently flexible to run something this complicated and sophisticated.

    Be much more afraid when they start using terms like "deputizing" to describe a public-private partnership with companies that actually can do this for them.

    • by icebike (68054)

      Its not going to be government run. Have you not read one single thing about this program?

      • by dch24 (904899)
        Yes, I have read the details on this program. Have you?

        When you say, "its [sic] not going to be government run," were you saying that the governance, financing, requirements, or management will be commanded by the private sector?
        • by icebike (68054)

          I'm saying the private sector will design, build, and manage the entire system, and there will be multiple competing vendors. They will be for-profit companies, you may have to buy a secure ID, or you may get one when you sign up with your Bank.

          I thought you said you read the document?

    • by Qzukk (229616)

      That people actually fear that the government is sufficiently flexible to run something this complicated and sophisticated.

      The government doesn't need to run something this complicated, they just need to be able to convince a jury that they can. See also: DNA testing until people started doing research and finding almost "impossible" 1:100billion matches in "dozens" of completely unrelated people: http://yro.slashdot.org/story/08/07/20/0244237/FBI-Fights-Testing-For-False-DNA-Matches [slashdot.org] Now that criminals ha

  • The US wants to become the World Police.
    • by spidercoz (947220)
      where the fuck have you been? The US has been assuming that role for the last 65 years
    • by erroneus (253617) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @01:27PM (#35882886) Homepage

      Become? Don't you mean "IS"?

      US "we think you have weapons of mass destruction banned by the world."
      Iraq "no we don't"
      US "we want to send inspectors to verify you don't"
      Iraq "we don't have them and they are not welcome here"
      US "then we have no choice but to..."
      Iraq "okay okay!!! we'll let the inspectors in but they won't find anything!"
      US "okay, they didn't find anything, but that just means you have them hidden better than we thought... we're invading you now."
      Iraq "Oh shit... I need to hide in a hole."
      US "damn... I guess they were right! There are no WMDs!! Our bad... but now that we are here, the region is unstable and we have to stay to clean up the mess we made... we're not going anywhere."

      US "We think you are harboring a known terrorist. Hand him over."
      Afghanistan "We're not even a real nation, we're a bunch of war lords in territories that are impossible to control, but be my guest -- if you want him, find him and take him."
      US "Okay, here we come! And by the way, if you know anyone who might be a terrorist, just write the names down and we'll take them too."
      Afghanistan "Okie dokie! I have a brother-in-law and a neighbor I don't like... they might be terrorists because I like you and they don't."
      US "We've got room for them in hotel GITMO! Got any more?"

      And that's just recently... there's more... lot's more.

      • US "damn... I guess they were right! There are no WMDs!! Our bad...

        it should be noted, for completeness, that wikileaks reports that chemical and biological weapons (which ARE Weapons of Mass Destruction, like it or not) were being found in Iraq for years after the invasion of Iraq.

  • by iluvcapra (782887) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @12:47PM (#35882340)

    ...Where a link to an article about computer credentials can become an 800-count thread where people don't talk about the article, and prefer to spin yarns about Hangar 18 conspiracies all the while claiming the exact opposite of what's actually going on.

    “That’s what a lot of people feared — that the government was going to take REAL ID and put it on the Internet and be able to track everybody’s Internet activity,” Stepanovich said.

    That is not what’s contained in the NSTIC proposal, to the relief of privacy advocacy groups.

    The government has set out principles — chief among them “choice, efficiency, security and privacy” — more than mechanics. But the basic idea is that you could have your offline identity verified online by a company of your choosing. That company would then provide you with a single credential you could then present (when you don’t want to be anonymous online) to Amazon, or VA.gov, instead of having to re-establish that you are who you say you are with every online transaction.

    The device carrying your credential — a flash drive, a cellphone, a smart card of some kind — would authenticate itself, rather than referring Amazon to the company that vouches for you. Amazon would know the buyer was secure, and the credential would know it was communicating with a bookseller, but the authentication provider would never learn that you just bought Bob Woodward’s new book.

    You can see why private industry would hate this proposal: it robs third parties of the ability to collect advertising and customer data through user authentication. So naturally they'll use scaremongering and useful idiots civil libertarians to claim this isn't what it is, and that we're much better off with a completely private system with no rules as to who can collect what data about what.

    • by vlm (69642)

      You can see why private industry would hate this proposal: it robs third parties of the ability to collect advertising and customer data through user authentication.

      So what, exactly, is the societal benefit of the governments new ability to directly compile a secret list of everyone whom purchased Noam Chomsky's "Manufacturing Consent" from Amazon, over the current system where they merely order Amazon to do it for them, or buy the info from commercial marketing databases?

      Also you miss the power of a SQL JOIN statement. My CC card company knows Very Well Indeed exactly who I am. Amazon knows that credit card account purchased a certain book. They all "share and shar

      • by iluvcapra (782887)

        So what, exactly, is the societal benefit of the governments new ability to directly compile a secret list of everyone whom purchased Noam Chomsky's "Manufacturing Consent" from Amazon, over the current system where they merely order Amazon to do it for them, or buy the info from commercial marketing databases?

        What are you talking about? Under the NSTIC proposal nobody keeps this data except for the person you bought the book from. There is no central database, there is no government database, there is no

        • by vlm (69642)

          What are you talking about? Under the NSTIC proposal nobody keeps this data except for the person you bought the book from.

          Transitivity. I don't know where you get the idea there are no databases. There already are, and they're shared amongst all big players. This is just intended to make it easier to link them together.

          What exactly does authentication have to do with market analysis? My local LDAP server does not look at my amazon recommendations before letting me log in, it just checks the password. So.. revamping the detailed procedures of the authentication department will affect the market analysis and targeted advert

          • by iluvcapra (782887)

            There already are, and they're shared amongst all big players. This is just intended to make it easier to link them together.

            But you're doing business with Amazon, somebody you're doing business with has a right to record what you buy. I'm talking about companies that have no right to this data collecting it anyways, because they manage to make their authentication platforms defacto standards without any regulation over what they're allowed to collect. A rule that says Google has no access to your purchas

            • by vlm (69642)

              I'm talking about companies that have no right to this data collecting it anyways, because they manage to make their authentication platforms defacto standards without any regulation over what they're allowed to collect.

              Sounds like a credit bureau business model. That oligopoly hasn't turned out all that bad. I claim they all share everything regardless of process, and you're claiming one group would not share with another or at least one group should not get a free or better data stream that another does not get. And/or I think you're claiming that alternative SSO systems could be worse, but I'm claiming its already as bad as it can be. Unless I summarized you wrong, there's probably nothing else to do but civilly agr

              • by iluvcapra (782887)

                And/or I think you're claiming that alternative SSO systems could be worse, but I'm claiming its already as bad as it can be. Unless I summarized you wrong, there's probably nothing else to do but civilly agree to disagree and wish you a happy day.

                Authentication and SSO are the new horizon in Internet rentier economy, the only thing that'll keep consumers on an equal footing are rules for what information can and cannot be collected, and rules requiring everyone have equal access.

                Don't know about GOOG and

    • by NonSequor (230139)

      I'm one of the few people here who's been hoping for a system like this. I absolutely hate using personal information (name, DOB, SSN, mother's maiden name) as a means of authenticating one's identity. As it stands right now, if you know those, you may as well be the person. It's awful.

      That said, this proposal isn't perfect and I believe that it is absolutely vital that instead of trying to stop it because it's not perfect, that instead we try to make it better and make an effort to see that new policy refl

    • by hedwards (940851)

      You can see why private industry would hate this proposal: it robs third parties of the ability to collect advertising and customer data through user authentication. So naturally they'll use scaremongering and useful idiots civil libertarians to claim this isn't what it is, and that we're much better off with a completely private system with no rules as to who can collect what data about what.

      You don't think that there is something very wrong with the proposal? We don't have a national ID card for a reason. It's simple enough as it is to check to see if somebody arrested in IA is wanted in TX or MA as it is, I don't think we need or want to provide the government with an easy way to keep tabs on people that haven't been charged with any crimes.

  • Oh, right ... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by gstoddart (321705) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @12:54PM (#35882440) Homepage

    So ... I'm going to trust a government agency (especially one which has a vested interest in spying on us) to come up with a universal ID scheme which is secure, private, and actually works -- and doesn't have back doors?

    What the hell does DHS care about how people keep track of their on-line accounts other than to be sure they can track you?

    I'm sorry, but I don't trust this organization to perform this function ... either from a competence perspective, or from a trust perspective. I can only imagine it subsequently becoming illegal to not use this and Officer Friendly shows up at your door for your internet ID re-education.

    I can see all sorts of chilling effects like freedom of association and anonymous speech -- but, it will be hammered home to protect against kiddie porn and identity theft.

    This is a colossally bad idea, and worthy of a full-on tin-foil hat response. The government should stay the hell out of the internet and how people authenticate on it. And, really, unless you're also planning on having "Internet America" which is firewalled and distinct from the rest of the internet, this simply won't work.

    • by spidercoz (947220)
      I admire your ability to air legitimate concerns while simultaneously sounding like a paranoid crackpot.
      • by gstoddart (321705)

        I admire your ability to air legitimate concerns while simultaneously sounding like a paranoid crackpot.

        It's a delicate balance. ;-)

        But, the reality is, for a lot of us, 1984 and Brave New World (and most any other dystopian future scenario) serve as a strong template for identifying all of the things which we must never allow to happen.

        I believe this would be a colossal undermining of individual freedoms, and an incredibly terrifying notion. To me, this is the start of eroding several Constitutional amend

        • by spidercoz (947220)

          Start of eroding??? Have you been asleep for the past decade?

          Just because you're paranoid don't mean they're not after you.

    • I'm going to trust a government agency (especially one which has a vested interest in spying on us) to come up with a universal ID scheme which is secure, private, and actually works -- and doesn't have back doors?

      Nope.

      The DHS would not have access to any DB of online transactions (because there wouldn't be one). No government organization would be in charge of handing out IDs (this job would be done by an array of, presumably for profit, business entities). The businesses which did hand out the IDs would not be informed of where, when, or how you use them, the IDs themselves are the authentication (basically how secureIDs work). If you don't trust those safegaurds, there's nothing preventing you from getting mult

      • by gstoddart (321705)

        Even if the Government got a warrant to look at your transactions, they'd still have to go to each website they want information from and request them one by one, just as things are today.

        And, once it's in place and they have your ID for any site, then all they need to do is compile a list of however many people they want, and send out a series of documents to a bunch of sites and say "Please provide all of the information for the following IDs, and it's national security, so you can't tell anybody".

        If you

        • by iluvcapra (782887)

          "Please provide all of the information for the following IDs, and it's national security, so you can't tell anybody".

          Is the system now really such an impediment? Does the fact that you login as shubniggurath34 on one site by joewilsonATgmail on another really give you any measure of security or compartmentalization? If you want to prevent the government from taking data without a warrant you have to pass a law forbidding that; relying on the complexity of the internet login system to obfuscate your identi

          • by gstoddart (321705)

            Turner Diaries much?

            Given that I had to google it to find out what it was, no.

            Just because I don't trust the government, doesn't mean I'm part of, or sympathetic to, the radical right and the racists. Quite the opposite, in fact.

            Nice ad hominem attack.

            The tattoo was in reference to the friggin' Nazi's -- this kind of thing to me reeks of fascism.

            • by iluvcapra (782887)

              Just because I don't trust the government, doesn't mean I'm part of, or sympathetic to, the radical right and the racists

              No, just a "patriot," I suppose. The sort of patriot that hears the word "government" and immediately thinks "barcode tattoos." Who needs to bother with actually understanding what's being talked about, when you can tell folktales about black helicopters, Tacmars, security checkpoints, and the "fascism" of the United States government? Your hyperbole was one step too far, friend.

              • by gstoddart (321705)

                No, just a "patriot," I suppose.

                Yes, but not an American one ... I'm someone who believes that any time any government starts talking about providing a universal ID (for the internet or anything else), that it's time to immediately distrust the motivations of them and start looking at all of the unintended consequences.

                I just think that such a thing becomes rife with opportunities for abuse, and that as soon as any government moves to implement something like this ... then they will eventually move to make

  • I'm trying to work on a peer vouching system to establish identity and real existence of people sufficient to conduct a reliable global electronic vote.

    Anyone have any ideas what kind of algorithm might work for that?

    The idea is roughly along the lines of: What is the chance that a facebook "person" is a fake person or a duplicate person. A facebook account holder who has x number of friends each of whom have x number of friends (not forming small closed cliques but with some measure of wider global interco

    • by vlm (69642)

      I'm trying to work on a peer vouching system to establish identity and real existence of people sufficient to conduct a reliable global electronic vote.

      Anyone have any ideas what kind of algorithm might work for that?

      None, because there is no, or at least no simple, technical solution to the social problems of simple rubber hose coercion, vote buying, outright civil disobedience by the electorate, the innumerable electioneering laws about physical separation of campaigners and voting sites, lack of legal peer liability (if a poll worker decides to intentionally let me illegally vote, they are liable, but if I'm facebook friends with someone who cannot legally vote, or friends with a real person and an alias of that pers

    • by erroneus (253617)

      Once this system is working, would that mean we can do away with the electoral college? No? What, then, would be the point?

      • by vlm (69642)

        Once this system is working, would that mean we can do away with the electoral college? No?

        The primary real world use of the EC is as a reward to minor state level party functionaries. A family member of a friend got to be one. I don't remember the pres although given his leanings it must have been for Bush the First. The electors party and hang out together, make connections and schmooze. They hang out with lobbyists, insiders, etc. It would have been inappropriate for me to ask if their expenses were reimbursed, but I'm guessing the answer is yes, and from the stories of modest debauchery

        • by erroneus (253617)

          The point is that the EC was put into place because a popular election on a national scale would be inefficient to run. That was then and this is now. Now the popular vote is irrelevant due tot he way the EC is run and operated. It's a fix for a problem that is no longer a problem.

  • by omb (759389) on Wednesday April 20, 2011 @12:58PM (#35882486)
    There are just two things:

    (1) This does not solve the problem, only multi-lateral web of trust does that, ie PGP or X509 keys signed by your counterparties

    (2) Obummer's Administration will get it all wrong so (a) we have many more years of scams (b) it will provide endless opportunity for DHS, TSA, CIA and FBI to act ultra-vires and outside the constitution.

    Google "Swiss Sign" to see how to it right, respecting citizens privacy
    • by iluvcapra (782887)

      This does not solve the problem, only multi-lateral web of trust does that, ie PGP or X509 keys signed by your counterparties

      Nobody will ever accept this system unless you force it on them with laws, the power of laziness is just too strong.

      Google "Swiss Sign" to see how to it right, respecting citizens privacy

      I did. You have to buy your identification from the Swiss post office for 65 francs, the post office digitally signs your cert after you bring your government ID card to a post office for visual ins

    • by dkleinsc (563838)

      (2) Obummer's Administration will get it all wrong so (a) we have many more years of scams (b) it will provide endless opportunity for DHS, TSA, CIA and FBI to act ultra-vires and outside the constitution.

      I don't care who's administration is running a program, because I know for certain that whoever is running it now won't be forever. That means whether or not I trust the guy currently in office, I can't assume that the next person to hold that office won't completely screw it up.

      In other words, I judge based on the merits of the proposal, not who's proposing it or who's going to be in charge of implementing it.

  • Is it the beginning to government tracking?

    No, that began before most of us were even born. Now go study some history, and don't submit any more blurbs as if they are stories.

  • Anybody on Facebook needs to STFU about "government tracking you online". Facebook sells more to its advertisers than the government will ever know about you.

  • Rather ironic that the Land of the Free and Home of the Brave is slowly but surely progressing to a point where the only ones who will really have "freedom" will be the outlaws that all these things are supposedly being put in place to catch.

  • had a job at The Daily Planet!

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