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2 February, 2006


NØ2IDI've been expecting the following non sequitur, though I was starting to hope that no-one would bother to pursue it.

Identity fraud is costing the UK an estimated £1.7bn every year, Home Office Minister Andy Burnham has said.

At £35 per person, the estimated annual cost was greater than that of planned compulsory national identity cards, he told BBC Radio 4's Today programme.

Two paragraphs, two statements. Two separate and unrelated statements.

Obviously, the reader is intended to unquestioningly absorb the implication that ID cards would eliminate identity fraud and hence save the nation money. Yet there's no evidence that ID cards will tackle ID fraud in a way that better use of existing, less intrusive measures wouldn't – the reverse, in fact.

By precisely the same logical approach:
Statement 1: Violent crime is increasing in the UK.
Statement 2: An automatic rifle costs less than a police officer's annual salary.
Implication: The general public should be armed.

Statement 1: People get sore feet.
Statement 2: Kittens are fluffy.
Implication: Shoe manufacturers need to contact illicit furriers.

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