the problem isnt the card, it's what they do with it
Here in spain, there is an ID card, it's not linked to any central overriding database, or scanned or anything, it's just a plastic card with your picture, your name, your NIE (like a passport number) and the entire country is run through that single number.
the real reason that people here don't mind the ID card is not because the government can track them, but they government doesnt care, they just wanna collect taxes, lookup your details when you goto their offices, know you're contracted employed, self employed, see where your money goes (for tax purposes) and things like that, it's all totally innocent and open, the value of the card is you can prove who you are without worrying that someone will say it's the wrong document, you can show you are who you are by giving a number and your photo.
When police stop you, they are not interested to prosecute you for stupid things (in spain, stupid things might include buring rubbish bins and rioting, but thats a different topic). They just want to know, who you are, oh ok, you're christopher thomas: X7123K3M make a note and off you go, they dont get anymore intrusive than that.
the reason nobody cares is that they know when they go home, the police don't put that data into the system then it automagically (like in some film) matches up that data with what you bought today, who else saw your ID card, etc, etc. Shops for example, don't want to know your ID number, just that your name on the card, matches the name on the credit card and then it's all happy families, they dont record it, they just look at it, compare against your face, ok, it says christopher thomas, your bank card says christopher thomas, surely you are christopher thomas.
You see, thats the thing, because you know they arent building some huge database, nor care what shoes you purchased, you tend not to give a shit when they ask you.
the reason is that unlike the UK, spain has had an awkward dictatorship history that now makes the government genuinely afriad of it's populace, thats why they don't arrest everyone at a riot, or kettle them, they just want the people to go home and stop trashing the place, they know that if they go in heavy handed, the people will turn around and there is normally like 3x as many and the police will get a kicking.
compare that to the london riots with the kettling? did anyone else not think to yourself, why don't you just organise yourselves and bust out? you think a single line cordon of police or even double line will stop 300 people? I dont think so, take those sticks off the police and go happy until you find a toilet or drinking water. But it's just not the british way, we are more cowed in this country, in spain, they are not, they'll happily lash out at the police and the police know it, therefore the police are more careful, but they have guns? doesnt stop the people and the police don't start shooting people, franco franco! will come the crowds shouts, then you're into REALLY dangerous territory.
anyway, back to my point, the UK is a serial empire builder, has anyone thought what all this information is good for? the only reason I can think of is that it's all about empire building, the UK wants another empire, can't have the one it lost, so will just build a new impenetrable fortress in the shape of a database instead, why does the UK gov care whether I bought shoes this afternoon, then got stopped by the police?
why does the system need to have real time communication with the police on the ground? are we really that violent? do we need to have our identities checked in real time as we stand around? why do shops want to scan our id and store those details, of course, checked against the DB to see if it's fake or not, are we really that criminally minded?
the fact is there isnt really a reason to want most of this information, 99% of it is useless, it's just technology for technologies sake, it's not like it makes fraud harder (buy online, they can't scan your card when it's in your home) and there has to be a manual fallback in case a customer's card doesnt work, so what then?
then there is the problem that they try to trick you into signing up, you know it's suspicious when they can't just SAY what it is, SAY what it's for, LET you look at it and LET you read all the info about it, no, they say twisted things, lie, cheat, collude, all of the things we are hearing about.
then they say that it's totally cool, we should all sign up and then wonder why people stare back thinking, WTF? they don't understand what our problem is.
I mean, if they told you everything about it, let you look at the specs, let you inspect your own data, let you access your profile to see what is held, openly talked about it, invited people to know more, didn't lie cheat or deceive, would you still dislike it? I am thinking that if you knew everything about the system, you'd like somethings, hate others, but you wouldnt feel the dishonesty that is being spread about the system now, I mean, if they are trying to cheat people to signing up, it must be bad right? must be a complete shithole nightmare of a system they just dont want to tell people about.
thats the problem, mostly, it's not the system which people hate, it's the way it's being implemented and spoke about, if it was open, and modifiable by an interested public willing to work with the government to make it more secure, more relevent and less craptastic, I reckon people wouldnt give a shit.
just like in spain.