How do people make sense of these situations where the agencies they have to deal with do not lead by example? They discount all the messages, even cynically inverting the “trust me” into “do not under any circumstances …”. They look at the actions that they can see and decide whether they can tolerate the situation or not. So we ask whether our experience of the police is that they are repressive, and if it is we assume that they will use identity cards to oppress us. Of course the government is institutionally blind to police oppression so they cannot understand this attitude.
Interestingly there are already signals being unwittingly sent. David Blunkett thinks that within five years the technology of identification will be 100%. (This despite no technology ever having achieved this – Titanic? – and there being nothing in the public documentation of the advice he has been given to support such a statement.) This signals to me that the evidence of fraud, fallibility and repression will be wilfully ignored, as it was for instance with early credit cards.