Reason.tv: Smiles Outlawed: DMV Makes Life Even More Miserable

This week the Virginia DMV announced that it's going to outlaw smiling in driver's license photos. Thought life at the DMV couldn't get any worse? Wrong again, America.

Reason.tv video written and produced by Dan Hayes.

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  • ||

    Virginia DMV announced that it's going to outlaw smiling in driver's license photos.



    Funny, years ago the State Department told people not to smile for their passport photos. The some genius came up with the idea that America needed to project an image of happy, friendly people to the world. And an order was issued that, henceforth, you were to smile for your passport photo.

    Of course, the police in VA don't need a friendly smiling face. They know, when they pull you over for a traffic stop or break down your door for an early hours no-knock raid, that you are a "civilian" and hence "the enemy".

    Round up the usual suspects.

  • ||

    I'd say that the government has gone too far this time, except I'm surely several thousand "times" too late. Really, when the bully keeps stepping over the line in the sand, at some point, you have to slap him down.

    I'd like to think we just did a bit of that in California, recently. I hope the spirit burns brighter in the weeks, months, and elections to come.

  • Mister DNA||

    Oscar Bluth has something to say about this.

  • Bob A||

    Primus said it best.

  • ||

    Be honest: How often do you smile when you get pulled over?

  • ed||

    Short and sweet. Maybe too short.
    But still sweet, sweet satire. Kudos.

  • Paul||

    When smiles are outlawed, only outlaws will smile.

  • PbP||

    Before you go to the DMV to get your picture taken get really really drunk.

    That way when the police pull you over and compare your face to the photo you will look fine.

  • Syd||

    You're better off with a look of screaming terror. That way, if you drive your car off a cliff, it's easier to identify you.

  • ||

    Of all the things to get up in arms about... who cares? When issuing ID cards, telling people not to smile makes it easier to ID them... and this is some terrible violation of your rights? Get a life.

  • ||

    @Joe_D:

    No, it's just fucking stupid. Really fucking stupid.

  • Richard Stands||

    Joe,

    It would also be convenient for them if we all got the same haircut. It'd make it easier for the face recognition program. And get rid of those sideburns!

    If the progression is already to facial expression, it's hard to imagine where further intrusions become too absurd to be feasible.

    Remember: THEY work for YOU, not the other way around.

  • jk||

    I'm ambivalent about this. Nancy Pelosi would not be able to get driver's license if the CA DMV had the same regulation.

  • IceTrey||

    I've gotten drivers licenses in half a dozen states and they all said not to smile. What's the big deal?

  • ||

    So, how about if I forgo smiling, but I wear a false nose, ears, and cheekbones to fuck up their biometric scan software? I know some very good makeup artists who could make me look like anyone at all.

    -jcr

  • ||

    I'll also mention that if face recognition software can't identify someone who's smiling, then we're screwed if Al Queda ever learns to lighten up and be cheerful when they attack.

    -jcr

  • Richard Stands||

    Boiling the frog.

  • ||

    This is silly on all sides. It is definitely easier to identify (obviously unsmiling) suspects if their ID pics are unsmiling. In my first (NY) driver's license pic in 1987 they told me not to smile for that reason. When I got a VA license in 1992, they didn't say one way or the other. Then when I got another NY license in 1997, they once again didn't say.

    Look, either we think it's important to be able to ID people from their drivers licenses or we think that's a problem. If the latter, then the LICENSE ITSELF is a problem. If the former, it only makes sense to tell people not to smile.

  • ||

    I should add that, if they're actually refusing to issue licenses to people who won't stop smiling, then I have a problem with this policy. If it just amounts to telling people not to smile and shrugging if they do so anyway, then who cares?

  • ed||

    I live in Florida and was instructed by the counter drone to smile. I complied, happily.

  • ||

    Two day ago I went to DC DMV to get a new non-drivers id. I was all in all a pleasant experience and I was out in less than an hour. I've been told by more than one person that the picture looks good. Maybe sometimes some part of government can work.

  • ||

    Wow, leave it to DMV to ruin the day. I am not surprised. Have you ever seen a "happy" DMV employee?

    RT
    www.online-privacy.vze.com

  • ||

    "It would also be convenient for them if we all got the same haircut."

    Not everything is a slippery slope.

  • ||

    9/11! 9/11! 9/11! 9/11! 9/11!

    Why does Dan Hayes hate America?

    To all the folks blathering about ease of facial recognition - When a friend or spouse smiles, how often do you have to ask "Do I know you?"

    This will enhance safety and police work almost as much as limiting shampoo on the airplane to 3 ounces.

  • MNG||

    I can't imagine smiling makes much of a difference for ID purposes, certainly not as much as other things we would not want DMV to mandate (haircuts, muttonchops, etc). This is stupid.

  • MNG||

    "To all the folks blathering about ease of facial recognition - When a friend or spouse smiles, how often do you have to ask "Do I know you?""

    Tru dat, double true J sud D.

    I mean, even better than that, look at a picture of some stranger. Now, if that stranger smiled or hell even stuck his tongue out would you, looking at a photo of the latter, be like "holy shit who IS this second person?"

  • endpoint||

    The new internet czar, will have a much easier time of identifying rogue computer users with the smile being nixed. Who smiles in a cube farm all day?

  • Some Guy||

    Who is smiling when at the DMV, anyway?

  • Douglas Willinger||

    Virginia is a criminal entity with an anti people name as it implies a state without people.

  • ||

    I saw a documentary about the casinos in Vegas and the facial recogition tech that they use to catch card counters and the like and kick them out before they can do their thing. The system would measure the distance between the eyes, as apparantly this is very unique and allows security to make an ID much faster, since they don't have to sift through as many photos of known cheats. Once again private industry shows better results without agitating their customers.

  • ||

    And btw here in WA state (at least west of the Sound) the DMV is actually not that bad. I hardly ever have to wait in line. And I only need to go there every five years.

  • 24AheadDotCom||

    Cute video! There are many more videos just like it here.

    Meanwhile, if there are any adults out there, here's David Shuster trying to shush up Tancredo when Tancredo discussed an NCLR award recipient who'd earlier proposed genocide.

    P.S. Any replies to this comment will most likely consist of ad homs, as libertarians concede my points and show the childish, anti-intellectual nature of libertarians.

  • Liberty Lover||

    Can't somebody just fire this f-ing' governmental bureaucrat who made this 'rule'?

  • ||

    That's nothing.

    In California, they are going to have to shut down the DMV and fire all the workers. Henceforth, there will be no drivers' licenses; anyone, (including IllegalMexicans!!) will be able to drive with impunity. At InsaneSpeeds. With no insurance. While getting blown by fourteen year old twins!

    And then, they will fire all the prison guards and release all the murderers!

    Next week, they're going to auction off all the stuff from the Lawrence Livermore Labs to the Iranians and the North Koreans. The Cali Cartel has just about finalized their bid for the California National Guard fleet of FA-18s.

    It's the only possible solution to the BudgetArmageddonApocalypse!!!!1

  • Mad Max||

    [====DMVchats.cOm====] which is the biggest club in world for singles from the Department of Motor Vehicles to meet and date motorists who are willing to put out in exchange for more expedited service. In exchange for being permitted to smile on their license photos, these hot drivers will be willing to let you have a quick grope. And if you're willing to take points off their license, they will be happy to do you right there in the DMV office. Be the envy of all your colleagues - go to DMVchat.com today!

  • ||

    the childish, anti-intellectual nature of libertarians.

    Bruce Bartlett, is that you?

  • ||

    LoneWacko smirked all the way to the liquor store. He knew that when he got back with his Goldschlager and Zima (he loved that combo), his all-powerful disclaimer that he now put on his posts at that awful libertarian blog would have prevented anyone from mocking him or insulting him.

    He couldn't wait for that first sip; it, like Goldschlager/Zima combos always did, would taste like...victory.

  • T. H. Readjacker||

    "It's not about you," declares Reverend Rick Warren, the celebrity minister and hair-blown invocationer of Barack Obama's inauguration, in his best-seller, The Purpose-Driven Life. It's about God's purpose for you. Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers and Gar Alperovitz and Lew Daly's Unjust Deserts also declare that "it's not about you." For that matter, it's also not about Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Beyoncé, Gordie Howe, or any other wildly successful individual; it's about the circumstances you and they were lucky enough to fall into.

    The first lesson Gladwell delivers is that luck explains at least part of success. To a startling degree, the year and month someone was born predicts how well he or she will do. Sports provides some clear evidence. It is the arena of achievement in which native talent should most determine who gets ahead. Yet, month of birth is critical. Would-be athletes born just after the cut-off dates for youth sports leagues are much likelier to end up, years later, as successful players and even professionals than those born near the end of the twelve-month period.

    The other fateful accident Gladwell dwells on is of a different nature: the fortune of being born into the right culture. Drawing on superb scholars as varied as historian David Hackett Fischer, sociologist Annette Lareau, and psychologist Richard Nisbett, Gladwell argues that families inherit and pass on distinctive habits. Those habits may be rooted in the exigencies of life centuries earlier-herding in the borderlands of Britain, toiling in the rice paddies of southern China-but, according to this controversial theory, they influence descendants to this day. To be born in the American South or to Chinese-American parents is to inherit the habits, respectively, of reacting violently to any implied insult and of persisting intensively in the face of any problem. The former culture raises the child's chances of failure in life, the latter of success.

    Gladwell tells stories about extreme successes, about "outliers," but he means to convey a broader message. He aims to demonstrate "that extraordinary achievement is less about talent than it is about opportunity." He concludes that the "patchwork of lucky breaks and arbitrary advantages that today determine [sic] success" ought to be replaced "with a society that provides opportunity to all."

  • Mike||

    T. H. Readjacker: cute name

    Given that most personality traits are about 50% hertiable

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Big_five_personality_traits

    and that adult intelligence is about 80% heritable

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0275961036/reasonmagazineA/

    Gladwell's thesis that "that extraordinary achievement is less about talent than it is about opportunity." is simply wrong. Bill Gates might have had more opportunities than most, but most people with his opportunities would not have gotten as far as he did. The same goes for the hockey players, ect.

    Oh yeah, I hate the DMV.

  • Mike||

    oops: heritable

  • ||

    # Brian24 | May 30, 2009, 6:01am | #

    # Look, either we think it's important to be
    # able to ID people from their drivers licenses
    # or we think that's a problem. If the latter,
    # then the LICENSE ITSELF is a problem.
    # If the former, it only makes sense to
    # tell people not to smile.

    The original driver licenses were simply cards that said somebody had pass the State's test for driving proficiency and had filed all necessary papers and paid all appropriate fees. It took decades before the first photos were added to DLs, and longer still before thumbprints or other biometric info was included/required. With each "upgrade" of the license document, more and more people started to offer and accept it as "official ID," which was not the original intention of the card.

    The original DL was a CREDENTIAL, which slowly evolved into an IDENTIFICATION. Very rarely in life do we need to substantiate our actual identities. More often, we need to demonstrate qualification, proficiency, or right to access. The methods and mechanisms for this can be arranged between the individual and those who need to establish the qualities or rights in question. But because the government has forced us to carry the credential-cum-identification, the need is lessened to explore alternative approaches in the private sector.

    I don't like the idea of saying that someone must have a license from the government for traveling along a public road, regardless of the conveyance. I understand that many believe this position to be extreme. So, fine. If the State wants to require a license, JoeD is right, it's a small inconvenience in the grand scheme of things. But any such license ought to be more like a library card and less like an internal passport and key to one's "permanent record" -- one's life. Anyone who doesn't drive should be able to get along perfectly well without either a DL or a State-issued ID card. And those who DO drive ought to be able to leave their DL at home when not driving, and encounter no inconvenience at all.

    The DL is indeed the problem, but I personally can live with that problem if it is not ever necessary to ID someone from the DL.

    As Libertarians, we would be wise to explore and promote solutions to getting around and along in the world, which do not require ID, especially of the type represented by the DL.

  • ||

    Seems a bit overblown to complain about the "no smiles" rule. Many places have had such rules at one time or another, and it is really rather inconsequential.

    On the other hand, reforming the various DMVs so customers don't have to devote a whole day to renewing a license? THAT would be a reasonable reform. Another nice reform in North Carolina would be making the licenses so that they don't wear out after a few months of use. It makes it really difficult to rent a car out-of-state when they can't read the number on the driver's license, even though it has seen less than a year of use and has been treated reasonably gently.

  • Syd||

    On the other hand, reforming the various DMVs so customers don't have to devote a whole day to renewing a license?

    Where does that happen? It's never taken me more than half an hour.

  • Brett Stevens||

    Oh, the human drama...

    They're just trying to get a clear facial imprint for their facial recognition systems, which will soon be so cheap you'll see your name and SSN popping up whenever you walk into a government building -- or any participating business.

    Good work on opposing the authoritarian state. Guess it found a backdoor and beat all of you, and now you're posting about how terrible it is the DMV won't let you smile because you can't face the true issue which is that the bad guys won.

  • anarch||

    Guy's speeding, gets pulled over by a cop. Cop approaches the car, says to the guy, "Sir, do you know how fast you were driving?"

    "No, Officer," the guy replies.

    "Well, you were doing 85 in a 30-mile zone. May I see your license, please?"

    "No, I don't have one."

    "You don't have one?"

    "Nope."

    "Why not?"

    "It was revoked."

    "Your license was revoked? What for?"

    "Drunk driving."

    "Your license was revoked for drunk driving? Uh, can I see your car registration, please?"

    "Don't have it."

    "You don't have your car registration? Why not?"

    "Cause it's not my car."

    "It's not? Whose car is it?"

    "I dunno. I just stole it."

    "You just stole this car?"

    "Yup. I saw a woman getting into the car, I grabbed her, raped and killed her, stuffed her body in the trunk, and took off."

    "You raped and killed a woman, stuffed her body in the trunk and took off?"

    Cop draws his gun, steps back, and says, "Sir, I need you to step out of the car right now."

    Driver steps out of the car.

    Cop trains his gun on the guy, says, "Sir, put your hands against the car, spread your feet, and don't move!"

    With his other hand, cop radios his Chief, tells the story, asks for back-up. Three squad-cars zoom up to the scene with squealing brakes, five patrolmen scramble out, take cover behind their vehicles, and train their guns on the guy. Police Chief gets out of one of the squad-cars, hand on his gun, walks over, says to the guy, "Sir, may I see your driver's license, please?"

    Guy replies, "Sure, Officer. It's in my wallet, in my back pocket. Just take it out."

    Police Chief takes wallet out of guy's pocket, finds the license, looks at it, looks at the guy, looks at the license again, says, "Oh. Uh, can I see the car registration, please?"

    Guy says, "Sure, Officer, it's in the glove-compartment. Help yourself."

    Police Chief walks over to the passenger side, opens the door, opens the glove compartment, finds the car registration, looks at it, looks at the car, says, puzzled, "Sir, I need the key to your truck."

    Guy says, "Sure, Officer, it's on the key-ring, in the ignition. Help yourself."

    Police Chief takes the key, puts it into the trunk-lock, and as the other cops take a step back and brace themselves, he cautiously turns the key and lifts the lid. In the trunk is a tire-iron and one old boot.

    Police Chief turn to the guy, says, "Sir, I don't understand. My officer told me that you hijacked this car, raped and killed the woman driving it and put her body in the trunk, that your license was revoked for drunk driving. I don't understand it, Sir. I'm sorry."

    "Your officer said I hijacked this car, raped and killed the woman driving it, and put her body in the trunk? And that my license had been revoked for drunk driving?

    "Yes, Sir. I don't understand. I'm sorry."

    "I bet that lying bastard told you I was speeding, too!"

  • MNG||

    Indeed, that was good, thought LoneWacko as he tipped his glass and watched the flecks of gold mingle with the Zima. He walked over to his computer and turned it on, smiling to himself at the thought of the traitorous H&R posters stymied by his last post.

    Suddenly what had been an annoying gurgle in his stomach felt in the walk home from the liquor store became an irresistible urge, a compulsion which he was forced to obey as he slammed down his drink, ran into the bathroom, yanked his pants down and vacated his bowls while standing over the toilet bowl. In relief he looked down; thankfully most of the mess had gone into the bowl this time. He began wiping off the toilet when he doubled over again in abdominable pain and shot down onto the seat for the second bout of explosive diarrhea.

    Sitting there he hung his head in shame as he fully knew the explanation for this event. His secret shame. Double enchiladas with extra tabasco sauce from dinner at the Mexican restaraunt he had began frequenting months ago in order to gather intelligence about the the menace of BrownImmigrants ruining his fair land but had since fallen in love with. His face had a look of steely reserve: the posters at H&R must never know...

    The pains redoubled as he clutched the sides of his porcelain throne and pushed. He reached over to his makeshift magazine rack for an issue of the Minutemen Project Newsletter. It was going to be a long night for a patriot...

  • ||

    Where does that happen? It's never taken me more than half an hour.

    I know. For libertarians this is not exactly the low-hanging fruit.

  • ||

    Hey, how does anyone feel about there being a law state or federal that prohibits the use of a drivers license for anything other than proving the ability to drive?

  • MNG||

    kwais
    Do you mean it would prohibit using it for things like proof of age?

  • ||

    Frankly I fail to see that this could have any motive or reason other than that a nonsmiling face is needed to get good image recognition.

  • Warty||

    Why is it necessary to use image recognition software on drivers' license photos?

  • anarch||

    how does anyone feel about there being a law state or federal that prohibits the use of a drivers license for anything other than proving the ability to drive?



    Dollars to doughnuts the result would be that some guy caught using his license as a straight-edge to draw a line, dust a smudge off his sweater, or scrape a bee-stinger out of his skin would incur a SWAT team response. The cure to bad law is seldom more law.

  • ||

    MNG,
    Yes, amongst other things.

    Employers can't require it unless they are asking you to drive ect.

  • ||

    Anarch,

    I generally agree with that sentiment. But I am not sure that requiring a license for people to drive is a bad thing, as a form of proof of some proficiency and knowledge, given the inherent danger of motor vehicles to others also in motor vehicles.

    And I am really upset about all the other uses of the drivers license, such as a way to catalogue you as a human being and subject of the government.
    I don't like having to show my license when I send money to someone, I don't like having to show my license when I UPS or fedex something to someone overseas, ect.

    I don't like showing my license when I am applying to a job, or checking into a motel. I am me, here is my money or my work, what else do you really need?

  • MNG||

    I don't know if I would support that. How would bar owners find out if persons were of the requisite age to get in to drink for example?

    Don't get me wrong, I think I catch your drift. I thought the liberal dissenters were right and the conservative majority were wrong in Hiibel v. Sixth Judicial District Court of Nevada. Meaning, I don't even think the law should be able to punish one who does not provide ID to them.

  • MNG||

    kwais
    I should have read your reply to anarch before replying. I like your thinking here. I commend you for thinking outside of the box, because many a doctrinairre libertarian would probably argue that such a law inhibits the "freedom" of the employer or service provider to make employment or service contingent on the employee or consumer providing their license (freedom of contract). But I think you've hit on one of those (in my mind) many areas in which liberty gives ground either way (or at least privacy gives way, and I think privacy is important in itself and ultimately linked to liberty). In my humble opinion this is why I support a law restricting the right of employers and other institutions to drug test and otherwise use certain surveillance techniques on their employees/customers.

    I'd be for such a law, except that often employers and service providers can be held responsible under certain laws for not IDing employees (think immigration/hiring laws) or customers (think gun sales). If we could find out some way of not getting those folks in trouble, then I'm more sympathetic to what you are talking about...

  • endpoint||

    Face recognition, potentially paired with, this drone ought to make all uneasy.

  • ||

    In my humble opinion this is why I support a law restricting the right of employers and other institutions to drug test and otherwise use certain surveillance techniques on their employees/customers.

    Employers should be free to be dicks like that -- employees should be free to decline to work for such employers.

    Going to the legislature asking for a "solution" to your "problems" rarely turns out well for anyone but a handful of miscreants special interests.

  • Paul||

    To all the folks blathering about ease of facial recognition - When a friend or spouse smiles, how often do you have to ask "Do I know you?"

    Workable facial recognition through digital means doesn't exist. Freaking chatbots do a better job.

  • Been there, done that||

    kwais-

    Hey, how does anyone feel about there being a law state or federal that prohibits the use of a drivers license for anything other than proving the ability to drive?

    I remember when we had the same law for Socialist InSecurity numbers.

    Here in Ohio, it took until 2003 to get our SS numbers off our driver's licenses- and the first question the cops now ask when they pull you over is "SS number?"

  • anarch||

    the first question the cops now ask when they pull you over is "SS number?"


    What's a good (and lawful) way to avoid giving it?

  • ||

    Been There,

    What if you decline to give them your SS?

    I got pulled over in some state I forget which and the cop asked me for my SS number, and like a tard I gave it to him.

    But it didn't match what was in his data bank, and he told me. I asked if he wanted me to make up a number.

    He was confused and let me know.

    To this day I regret giving him my SS number, I feel like I shouldn't have given up that, the only thing he has a right to is proof that I am have a license to drive.

  • ||

    MNG,
    You make me feel like I have done wrong and gone to the socialist side "for the better of all".

    I don't want to forbid the using of drivers license for the benefit of employers against business owners. I don't want to infringe on business owners right of association, or their property rights to run the business as they see fit.

    I want to forbid the use of drivers licenses for such things in order to protect both business owners and employees from *government*

  • MNG||

    "Going to the legislature asking for a "solution" to your "problems" rarely turns out well for anyone"

    I dunno prole, you may want to ask this group of people called "black people" how that turned out for them!

    Since the passage of civil rights legislation their lives have been immeasurably improved...

    You could say the same about disabled people...

  • MNG||

    Oh c'mon kwais, the Dark Side is SOOOO much superior! Give in to the Dark Side...I can feel your anger when employers violate your privacy and compel you to give information you do not really want to give...

  • MNG||

    Seriously though, kwais. Come on, screw "freedom of contract" and the "rights" of employers to use their economic advantage to compel people into giving up their privacy and freedom. For me, I ask myself, what would really make people like me more free to do as I please? That's liberty. Libertarianism as an American political movemement is far too much the bitch of the wealthy and powerful, constructing bizarre abstract arguments as to why many policies that empirically restrain the choices of most folks are actually protective of "liberty." Don't buy into that shit.

    If a law were passed that employers could not demand certain information from you then boo-fucking-hoo for them and yay-fucking-ay for all of us. There are a lot more people who would have their choices, privacy, and such protected by such a law than would have them constrained. Net gain, all good.

  • Gene||

    Yup, they already do this in New Zealand. I virtually had to from when I was getting my passport photo a few years ago, it took several photos before I could get my expression "neutral" enough for it to pass. I guess it is more harmonising legislation from the UN..

  • Gene||

    oops that should say frown.

  • Kim Jong-il||

    For me, I ask myself, what would really make people like me more free to do as I please? That's liberty.

  • ||

    MNG,
    I think of the successes of the civil rights movement are the successes of getting the government out of the racism business.

    And the failures of the civil rights movement are the getting the government into the attempt to end racism in the civilian populace.

    I think that latter helps racism to endure.

  • ||

    kwais-

    What if you decline to give them your SS?

    You go to jail.

    Until you give them your SS#- so they can "identify" you!

  • ||

    I live in Nevada, which is quickly becoming a nanny state thanks to a relentless influx of Californians which simply do not understand that raising taxes all the time is bad (we just got a 21% tax hike of $1.1 billion the largest in state history...even adjusting for inflation I believe). I'm happy to report that I rebelled. I smiled for my ID.

    Who knew being an outlaw in the "Wild West" could be such an innocent affair.

  • ||

    ""I ask myself, what would really make people like me more free to do as I please""

    Kim Jong Il made the point well, but really MNG?
    Really?

    So, if you feel free-er without gay porn.

    without swasticas, or the things Meg said in the Islam thread.

    Without actresses that refuse to get naked for a movie,

    It is ok to ban them.

    Individual liberty as long as it is the liberties you approve of?

    I mean that is the way most of Europe is pretty much, and it is said that Europe is the way we are headed.

    But that aint liberty. It really aint liberty when the majority gets all uppity and starts throwing people in the ovens.

  • Richard Stands||

    I could be wrong, but it was my understanding that there is a difference between identifying yourself, and providing an ID. If a police officer asks you to identify yourself - based on an articulable suspicion a crime has/is/is about to be committed - you would be required to provide minimal identifying information, like name, address, and birth date. You are not required to carry or display an ID document.

    As far as social security number, I'm pretty sure they cannot require you to give that. SSN is pretty heavily guarded in most areas of the legal system. At least for the moment.

  • ||

    Patrick,
    I also live in NV, am also dismayed by the stupidity of the CAians that move here and then try to make the government in the image of that which they are running away from.

    Dismayed by the raising of taxes, and that people put up with that.

  • ||

    ""You go to jail.
    Until you give them your SS#- so they can "identify" you!
    ""

    How is that not a violation of the 5th?

    (Hey funny thing here, you know that from tv and movies, in Spanish court and other courts, you have people pleading the 5th and stuff. I have a few friends in Europe that are lawyers, and this irritates them, but humors me).

  • The Angry Optimist||

    Libertarianism as an American political movemement is far too much the bitch of the wealthy and powerful, constructing bizarre abstract arguments as to why many policies that empirically restrain the choices of most folks are actually protective of "liberty."



    Otherwise known as "principles", "freedom of ownership and association", contracts and recognizing that all bargains are unequal to an outside observer.

    Only a "liberal" could think that it's not paternalistic to tell grown adults "you cannot freely enter into that contract".

  • A T||

    There's some room for abuse.
    Anybody remember that scene from Full Metal Jacket, where the sarge tells the fat kid to stop smiling? What if you always look like you're smilying, and you can't "stop" it? They deny you the license?

  • Mike Godwin||

    @ kwais, 10:21pm

    'Bout f*in time!

  • MNG||

    "Only a "liberal" could think that it's not paternalistic to tell grown adults "you cannot freely enter into that contract"."

    And only a libertarian could think that there are workers out there dying to work for less than minimum wage or in unsafe working conditions etc. Sure, plenty of employers would like to be free to bargain for that, but very few workers.

    Unless the workers would be compelled by something...Now what would that thing be TAO? Their relatively weaker bargaining position? Hmmmm.

  • MNG||

    kwais @10:21
    I'm not sure how putting people in ovens or banning gay porn makes me more free, or wtf Kim Il Jong has to do with any of that.

    Restricting the freedom of the few (employers) in situations where the freedom of the many (workers) would be expanded by that is what I'm talking about.

    As an empirical reality a government ban on employment drug testing would restrict some employers and free up many more workers (from having to undergo invasive drug tests). Rinse and repeat in other areas to expand freedom.

  • Richard Stands||

    So when I hire a kid to mow my lawn, do I enter that class of people less worthy of retaining rights? When he sub-contracts to his younger brother, does he?

    Liberty is only for some classes of people? Who chooses?

  • The Angry Optimist||

    So, see, if an employer offered me 10,000 more a year just to get regularly drug tested (because drug use costs him some amount over 10,000), I couldn't enter into that contract cuz, you know, MNG is here to save me from myself.

    Thanks, MNG.

  • ||

    Restricting the freedom of the few (employers) in situations where the freedom of the many (workers) would be expanded by that is what I'm talking about.

    MNG is arguing from a different definition of freedom than libertarians are.

    Libertarians define freedom as "freedom from coercion", and include government action, backed as it is by the use of force or the threat of force, as coercive.

    MNG defines freedom as "ability to do what you want."

    I'd like to earn a million dollars a year. Because the government doesn't prohibit me from entering into a contract for that, to a libertarian I am free to do so. Because no employer is willing to enter into such a contract with me, per MNG I am not free to do so.

  • ||

    """To all the folks blathering about ease of facial recognition - When a friend or spouse smiles, how often do you have to ask "Do I know you?"

    This will enhance safety and police work almost as much as limiting shampoo on the airplane to 3 ounces."""

    Facial recognition doesn't work worth a damn except in controlled settings. Remeber the year they used it at the Superbowl? I didn't find one criminal. VA Beach had them installed, by the waterfront I think, found no criminals, VA Beach removed them and sued the company.

    """Because no employer is willing to enter into such a contract with me, per MNG I am not free to do so."""


    """You go to jail.

    Until you give them your SS#- so they can "identify" you!"""

    From the SSA website.

    Your number is confidential
    The Social Security Administration protects your Social Security number and keeps your records confidential. We do not give your number to anyone, except when authorized by law. You should be careful about sharing your number, even when you are asked for it. You should ask why your number is needed, how it will be used and what will happen if you refuse. The answers to these questions can help you decide if you want to give out your Social Security number."
    http://www.ssa.gov/pubs/10064.html

    Of course you could tell the cop that it's a federal issued number outside his jurisdiction. I'm sure that will get you back on the road quickly. Probably not in your car though.

  • ||

    Scratch the Dean line

  • ||

    I never smile if I can help it. Showing one's teeth is a submission signal in primates. When someone smiles at me, all I see is a Chimpanzee begging for its life.

  • ||

    Scratch the Dean line

    A little lower, TrickyVic. Ahhh, that's it.

  • Happy WA||

    This is my natural facial postion..please don't beat me for being happy..... ::Thump thump thump....::

  • Medic||

    Funny Mark,

    When I bare my teeths its for dominance, a threat and challenge.

    I only smile when I know the other person is Fucked. hahahahahha

    The French think we're all a little looney and a bunch of whores because we smile so much.

  • ||

    The purpose behind not smiling is to make digitizing your facial features easier for the underlying digital recognition software. Smiling confuses the software's algorithms. In the future, when the state's cameras 'see' you they want to make sure they match the the face in the camera to the correct associated personnel data. Sleep tight Virginia.

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