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05/08/2006 Archived Entry: "Vehicle monkeywrenches"

I SPENT MIND-NUMBING DAYS ON THE HIGHWAY recently and had hours to reflect on the stupidity of turning drivers licenses into national ID cards for the alleged sake of "security." The major result: Millions of "marginal" people -- both legal and illegal immigrants, Outlaws, transgendered people, "deadbeat dads," and oldsters born in the days before universal documentation -- are increasingly forced to drive without licenses. Which also means without insurance. Which may also mean (depending on state law and the individual's degree of cleverness) driving unregistered vehicles.

So in the vain hope of identifying the very rare terrorist (or whichever other miscreant they're momentarily claiming as a dire danger to the country), they fill the highways with scofflaws.

Not that I'm against scofflaws, mind you. ;-) Scoff away.

It's just that it's stupid -- and typical of control-freaking government -- to create scofflaws where none need exist. A drivers license ought only certify that you know, and agree to obey, the rules of the road. Using the threat of withdrawing the "driving privilege" as an iron fist to force acceptance of national ID is going to backfire spectacularly.

Well, that rant aside, I'm going to share a personal experience regarding licenses and registration that was sent to me by one of my favorite scofflaw correspondents. He shall remain nameless. But even though he calls this the end of an experiment, it sounds like both a beginning and an end, to me.

I wanted to let you know of a little experiment that just ended yesterday.

Yesterday, I went down to the DMV (Kalifornia version) and got the plates for my wife's [truck]. Big deal, right? Well, it kinda is, as it relates to those who do not wish to jump on the Big Bro Bandwagon (the drinks are all watered down for your safety, of course).

The experiment was this: a year and a half ago, we went down and purchased the vehicle I mentioned earlier. Since it had no plates (we bought it from a dealer) we had only the plastic dealer plate (a glorified ad, really ) and a piece of paper with the DMV info on it in the rear window. I could not help but notice that it really could not be read, save for the DMV logo from anywhere farther than say, ten feet.

Well, it's got an eight foot bed, and it's begging for a rear-end collision to drive closer than what, several car lengths at highway speed. Long and short of it, on numerous occasions, we had the bast, I mean /cops/, directly behind us, and yet, no problems were encountered.

Well, that old plate worked for just over 18 months before it got too skunky & yellowed to work any longer, so I had to do what I had to do -- I went and got my driver's license. Yes, no license, no plates for 18 months!

Now, you and I stand on the same side as it relates to govt., so I thought I'd have fun and try another experiment. The form asks for the applicant's Socialist Slave Number, supposedly to verify one's identity (my wife lost her job, as she would not renew "her" social security card to reflect her married name and does not have a current D.L. as she refuses to submit to such tripe. I love that woman!). [Ed. note: I've never met her, but from that, I conclude that I'd love her, too!]

Well, I gave 'em one. Admittedly, it really seemed like it was the right one, but it was off by a couple of inverted numbers (I, too, suffer from amnesia/forgetfulness as it relates to "official documents"). Of course, they have you sign, under penalty of perjury (without a jury? How the hell is THAT possible) that the information is "true and correct". So, I did. Anyway, I got the SOB and, like Sinatra, did it MY WAAAY.

Despite what rhetoric they spew, they ain't that smart, and their databases aren't foolproof. Cailfornia spouts off about an "instant check" with the SSA, yet, I got the thing anyway. [Ed. note: I'm thrilled it worked for you, Anon Friend. And I hope it works for millions. But alas the "instant check" works in all too many cases. Others who've gotten sudden cases of dyslexia have been denied licenses until they "remembered" or brought in a card with the real slave number. Check your state's DMV web site; you might be able to sign an affidavit stating that you don't have an SSN.)

For the first time in ten years or more (I'm a recovering deadbeat dad, you know) I can legally (for what that's worth) drive on the roads I helped pay for, and proved that the machine is every bit as good as Windows -- it LOOKS like it works, but don't count on it...

For those in Hardyville or elsewhere, this may be an answer to getting around (no pun intended) one's town. Though common sense does apply. One should not drive at times there are few vehicles on the roads (early A.M. Sundays, 2:00 A. M. any days) or make a route habitual.

Anon Friend later added an extra bit of advice (which many of my friends have successfully used before) regarding auto registration:

Regarding the car plates, perhaps you could do what "illegals" here in Kalifornia do-ask a "Mole" to register it in their name.

[An acquaintance] has a relative whose car is registered in [a woman friend's] name. He got pulled over, no license, no insurance, etc. To make a long story short, he paid for the tow, and is driving the car again (same as before), and all she did was go and retrieve "her" car.

Or, just to annoy the bastards, you and a reliable friend can register and insure each other's vehicles. Another solution, of course, is to register your vehicle in the name of an LLC, a corporation, a trust, or some other non-you entity.

Posted by Claire @ 01:44 PM CST

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