WEDNESDAY 8th MARCH 8 PM
ROOM 102, PALMER BUILDING, READING UNIVERSITY (CONTACT FOR DIRECTIONS)
RAGE* invite you to an open planning meeting to organise a Reading based group to research and effectively oppose the introduction of Identity Cards and the National Identity Database. Many diverse groups and individuals are already in opposition to this state-corporate scheme, ranging from politicians, human-rights lawyers and intellectuals, through anti-authoritarian campaigners to (most importantly) 1000's of everyday people. However, we feel that this opposition is not reaching its full potential. For this reason we wish to organise a broad group with a threefold remit; 1) Research, 2) Developing an effective and practical strategy for resistance and 3) Public Education and information sharing.
So far, much of the opposition to ID has focused on some common (and valid) arguments, but has ignored the broader social and economic context, and has suffered as a result. ID is an attack on civil liberties, it will cost billions and be paid for by all of us, the technology doesn’t work and even the politicians and companies involved admit it won't stop terrorism and will increase fraud and theft of personal information due to the centralisation of data. However, all this ignores the context of social and economic control. ID is a re-hashing of an earlier plan to impose a 'National Entitlement Card' which would effectively be needed for you to participate in society, continuing the restriction of access to public services and welfare support (such as recent 'benefit reforms'), restriction of freedom of movement and the forcing of increasingly insecure living conditions (such as in housing and employment). In this way it would enable the state to decide who may be part of society and who must be excluded. This aims to force the poorest, most vulnerable and most marginalised people in society (such as the elderly, young, sick, unemployed, migrants and ethnic minorities, travelers, the homeless, squatters and political dissidents etc) to be fully incorporated and contained within the global economy or face further social exclusion (including poverty, eviction, imprisonment and deportation etc). It also enables moves toward a (more easily controlled) cashless economy. It is another brick in the wall of our increasingly regulated, restricted and monitored existence in the UK, where our movements are monitored 24/7, our spending habits logged (so companies can find out how to maximise their profits by making us ‘better’ consumers), and our associations scrutinized.
We also need to research and understand the process' behind ID (both in the public and private sectors) to identify any weakness', analysing where pressure is most effective and what kinds of actions are most suitable in each situation. With this in mind we hope this group will attract people from different social and political backgrounds, enabling a diverse range of ideas and opinions to be exchanged. We also wish to engage in debate with other anti-ID networks and campaigners, along with anyone whose knowledge, involvement or experience may mean they have a part to play. We aim to find the most directly and practically effective strategy to defeat ID and we argue that no potential activity should be excluded from the discussion, ranging from legal challenges and lobbying through to sabotage, direct action and anything else we can conceive. The decision on what action to take should be based only on practical analysis of it's effectiveness in a given situation. Lastly, we feel that the outcomes of this research and debate should be shared with the wider public, as well as other anti-ID networks and campaigners to aid a broad based social movement to effectively resist the implementation of ID Cards and the National Identity Database.
If you are interested please do come along at 7pm on Tuesday 21st Feb to our open planning meeting in Room 106 of the Palmer Building at Reading University. For further information on this initiative please don’t hesitate to contact us at email@example.com or phone 07833758317 and leave a message.
Yours, RAGE Collective.
*RAGE are an open, Reading based, anti-capitalist and anti-authoritarian collective. Please see www.readingrage.co.nr for more info. For UK anti-ID networks please see www.no2id.net, www.defy-id.org.uk, www.liberty-human-rights.org.uk/privacy/id-cards.shtml and www.stand.org.uk