Papers, Please

Taking away fundamental rights in an 'open' and 'free' society tends to be hard to do in big chunks. Pull away too many rights at one time and you risk awakening the populace. So generally things tend to happen quietly, slowly, in small pieces and always for "good reasons". It's not so much a conspiracy but the inevitable 'function creep' of all governments. The only way to stop this creeping loss of freedom is to publicly identify it and fight to have our freedoms restored.

John Gilmore, founder of the EFF amongst other accomplishments, carefully explains just how many of our freedoms of travel, association and employment have been made subject to the U.S. government's whim. I've read a lot about Mr. Gilmore's efforts to fight this most recent theft of liberty, but I still found his latest missive compelling for its stark and simple presentation of the facts. Well worth reading.

2 thoughts on “Papers, Please”

  1. you do not need to present papers to travel. you can walk, run, use a car, bicycle, boat, plane, or a pogo-stick. you must present id to ride on an airliner.

    you are now free to move about the country.

  2. Actually Gilmore explicitly addresses busses in his letter and points out that many bus lines now demand government issued ID. Furthermore telling people who want to have privacy that they can't travel by the fastest and cheapest means of long distance travel is exactly the sort of slow motion theft of freedom that is typical in free societies. You can't just shut down everything at once so you boil the frog slowly. Start with airlines, since you can wave the terrorist card and expand from there. Buses are apparently the next expansion point.

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