From BBC news: Hoon ponders new passport checks (via curious hamster).

Lordy lord. What now? Will the UK be turned into a police state? Will all inhabitants be microchipped/tagged?

My experience with the US Dept of Homeland Security’s OTT measures has not been good so far, what with being stopped at the check-in gate in Schipol because some jobsworth decided I could be a security risk because my starting point was the UK although I don’t hold a British passport. Why he thought that was dodgy, I will never understand. Unfortunately, I didn’t know the Dutch term for jobsworth or f*ckwit, or I’d have told him exactly how I felt about him.

And don’t get me started on the number of times I had to “report” to various authorities to get my DS-2019 stamped on arrival here (for those who don’t know what one is, lucky you!). And should I wish to leave the US for a vacation, I have to report to UCLA’s immigration representative to get that damn DS-2019 stamped again to verify that I am still working for them. Yes, even to visit the UK for a week in September for P’s brother’s wedding. Thank goodness I thought to ask when I should report to her for that, because it turns out she’s on holiday for most of August, and I’d be well and truly f***ed for going home at the start of September. How’s them security measure for you now, safety elephant?!? Never pay heed to any security advice from the Americans. They really know how to make aliens feel alienated. No wonder nobody bloody likes them. Do we want the UK to seem as unwelcoming as the US? (And bear in mind that I’m not even here on an immigrant visa, being a postdoctoral fellow… Nothing complex about that, but I’m already very reluctant to extend my J1 visa if I have to go through all that sh*t again.)

Oh yes, I nearly forgot. To rent an apartment here, one has to fill out a detailed form with all of one’s very personal and private information. Why? According to my landlady-to-be, because of the events of the 11th of September. So they now track where everyone lives. I seriously considered putting “Mickey Mouse”, “Disneyland” and “none of your business” under some of the categories.

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