George Orwell’s dystopian scenario of state surveillance and control in his novel of 1984 may just have the date wrong by about 30 years if recent Government ideas come to pass.

As well as the already infamous ID card scheme which is suppposed to protect our identities by centralising all data about us into a single point (!); now there is talk of creating a national DNA register; with a DNA record made for babies when they are born.

In addition there are already plans for 19 pieces of information to be collected, including mobile phone numbers and credit card details, from all travellers in Europe whether by sea, rail or air, including UK domestic flights, reports today’s Guardian.

Couple these with the recently announced ideas for the citizenship criteria for immigrants and we start to see a 1984 type situation with the State as the arbiter of individual identity. How long before even native born residents will have to earn full citizenship by compliance with State-required norms? Or before those who are deemed intentionally unemployed will have their access restricted to public services like the hospitals or libraries?

This is the logic of a mindset which makes the State the master not the servant of a free people; and treats us as valuable only as contributing taxpayers rather than as free and equal members of the community.


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