21st April 2006
analysis. That's what's done here.
cards, smart cards, debit cards, the whole schmeer.)
The Australian federal government is (again) floating
for public approval
the idea of issuing a smart card for those who wish to claim
medicare or social security. As a libertarian, I have no
objection to issuance of a smart identity card, if it has appropriate
and transparent conditions on access by authorized Australian
government departments. As stated last January, it
is probably a
pointless exercise that will be superseded by personal recognition
I would even suggest that the card be tied in with other
functions. It might also serve as a driver's license, gun
license, debit card on a government issued interest paying debit
account, (into which pensions or payments could be transacted -
management of that account
could be contracted out to a financial institution) voter
identification card, passport and any other uses that might arise.
My attitude to privacy is best explained by the acid comments of age
pensioner John Pritchard in "The Australian" letters
It is not, for me, a question
of privacy; I have no problem with people
knowing I am poor. It is the rich that desire privacy lest someone
should question their right to their wealth and the methods they employ
to obtain it.....(the government) could do worse than dish out smart cards
to the affluent. The Australian Taxation Office would surely welcome
One suspects that the snivel libertarians (apologies to John Laws)
obtain at least some of their funding from those who might have
something to hide.
During the SARS crisis that started in March 2003 I posted frequent warnings.
The reason that I am not posting warnings for bird flu is that there
are several extremely knowledgeable people already posting on the
subject, Chief (and to my mind sufficient) among those is the
website "effect measure"
which seems to be a site run by an (to my poor assessment) anonymous
but erudite group of teachers from east coast universities.
For those laymen like myself who accept that H5N1 may eventually be
extremely hazardous to their health, and want advice on what
precautions to take, and how to treat an infected person, I recommend
Home Care Guide which appears on the web site greenhammer.net.
The Australian press is behaving more and more like galahs, and
headless ones at that. (they better not report on bird
flu). They put on a huge fuss about Corby, then the Bali Nine,
virtually harassing our PM to pressure the Indonesians to let those
convicted criminals off scott free. Now the Indonesians have
taken a leaf from our book. If we think it is OK for them to
suborn their judicial system, then perhaps we can suborn ours to give
them back their Papuan terrorists?