The controversial plan was yesterday raised by Queensland Premier Peter Beattie, who suggested a national ID card to prevent unlawful detention similar to that suffered by Cornelia Rau and Vivian Alvarez.No, no, no. Horrible idea. It's going to be extremely expensive, it isn't going to stop terrorism, and while it might prevent some illegal immigration mistakes, at the huge cost/effort required, while making identity theft even easier, I can't see how the positives outweigh the negatives.
But the Prime Minister revealed cabinet's National Security Committee was already examining whether tougher measures were needed to close "loopholes" in Australia's counter-terrorism effort.
"All of these things will be looked at. I don't say never, ever in relation to things like that," John Howard said in Canberra.
A second idea is more CCTV cameras:
Closed-circuit television surveillance is expected to be boosted as part of tighter security arrangements to combat terrorism.CCTV is a tricky issue. I'm not overly fussed either way, as long as there are no cameras showing any part of private property without the prior consent of the owner of that property. But what I am interested in are other people's arguments for and against CCTV/ID cards. Leave your thoughts in the comments.
The Prime Minister, John Howard, was so impressed by the CCTV capacity used to identify four men believed responsible for 56 deaths on London transport that he wants Australian systems enhanced.
"The biggest thing that I have learnt by a country mile out of my visit, particularly to Britain, is the extraordinary value of surveillance cameras," he said in London yesterday.
Unlike the national identity card proposal, CCTV is in a script from which the Government is reading in unison. It was also backed yesterday by the Justice Minister, Chris Ellison, and the Foreign Minister, Alexander Downer, who said CCTV "being in place in so many different locations" had "clearly proved to be very effective".