While the Minister for Identity tries conjuring up possible uses for the ID card - more fantasy than reality, but telling nonetheless  – the Home Office has continued to use every trick in the book to manufacture 'demand'.
Its latest manoeuvre, buried in yet another obscure regulation – The Licensing Act 2003 (Mandatory Licensing Conditions) Order 2010 - is due to come into force this October. This measure, undebated by MPs and passed on the nod, is one of the first cases where showing ID for an ordinary everyday function is being written into statute.
Less formal age checks creep ever wider, but from this autumn a pub or club MUST have an age verification policy, and MUST ask anyone who looks as if they might be under the age specified in that policy (which could be 18 but could equally be any arbitrarily chosen age which makes the premises safe(?)) to show "identification bearing their photograph, date of birth and a holographic mark".
Note 'identification' not 'proof of age', and the conveniently limited definition of what constitutes valid ID. Mandating forms of ID is a step closer to compulsion - they can't entice enough young people to apply for an ID card, so they'll coerce them instead.
Moves like this, as trivial as they may seem, are designed to entrench state identity control - serving Whitehall agendas that will not die easy, no matter which party is in power.
If you receive our newsletter you may well be better informed than most Parliamentary candidates on the realities of the ID scheme and the database state. In the run-up to the election, please do take the time to express your concerns to candidates and party canvassers in your area. It'll be time well spent. Be specific. Show them you care. Rooting out the database state is going to require continued pressure and MPs who pay attention and take action - and who won't let ministers or officials sneak things like mandatory forms of ID in by the back door.
The snooping society!!