(FWD) CHAIN LETTER to the Citizens of the World.

Graeme Bacque (gbacque@arcos.org)
Mon, 13 Apr 1998 13:46:09 -0400

---------forwarded message---------
CHAIN LETTER to the Citizens of the World.

   Please help us warn the world and build opposition to Scanning
Technology by forwarding this chain letter to as many people as

ATT.: Citizens,
   Foreign (American Banks) are beginning a project to fingerprint the
people of Canada. The banks and the City of Toronto Government are
opening with a pilot project (April 1998) to finger scan welfare
recipients in Toronto. The biometric scan would go on an ID card. Once
the pilot project is declared a success the banks will push to expand
scanning technology to the rest of society. Of course in the long term
the banks would like to push this technology everywhere on the planet.

   Citizens at the grass roots level have never asked for fingerprinting

and Ontario citizens already have a photo health card they can use as ID

for benefits. Fingerprinting is simply not needed. Welfare benefits were

cut 22 percent in Ontario recently and many other benefits have been
removed. Just today Toronto City Council altered the Wheel Transit
program for the disabled so that people who can't walk must wait on the
street for up to a half an hour in order to use the ride service. A
report just released on poverty condemns Canada for tolerating
unacceptable levels of unemployment and child poverty while at the same
time giving aid for the same problems in foreign nations. The streets of

this city are filled with homeless people. You would wonder why basic
civil liberties are being attacked with new fingerprinting technology at

time when the poor have had benefits reduced or cut off all together.

   The reason for fingerscanning is that politicians can get rewards in
terms of appointments to bank positions after they leave office.
Politicians know they can gain by pushing this new fingerprinting
technology. It is actually the taxpayer who doesn't gain because
millions go to the banks to pay for the scan system. And in the end
savings are only made because they cut benefits from people who don't
conform to new rules or won't submit to a scan. If politicians want to
cut people off welfare, the honest thing is to cut them off and take
responsibility for it. It is not responsible to hide behind phony
fingerprinting technology as a way of cutting people off.

   A similar thing has already happened with Casinos in Ontario --
politicians who pushed them through all went on to get the top jobs at
the Casino Corporations. Modern politicians seem to have little use for
citizens. They see citizens as cheats who must be fingerprinted and
watched. Often they promote hatred as they stereotype the less fortunate

as cheaters. This is done because they can't get grass roots support for

their bad policies by telling the truth. Protest does not move them.
Ontario Premier Mike Harris legalized finger scanning and he is a man
who pushes through legislation regardless of opposition from the
majority of citizens. The citizens of Toronto rejected the Megacity form

of government by a margin of 76 percent in referenda in 1997, but Mike
Harris forced it on us anyway. A flawed election with a voters' list
drafted by the American Express Company gave us the Toronto Megacity
government we now have. The elected council has not even discussed
finger scanning, they just snuck the project in through back door,
without consultation, based on a vote of the old council that Mike
Harris abolished. The City of Toronto does not have a forum where
citizens can speak on this issue.

   Government by banks and by politicians who think democracy is a
license to wheel and deal are the order of the day. The banks have
probably done the best job of robbing us all. In Canada, in nation after

nation, the government funding systems are set so that expensive money
is borrowed from private banks and a large part of the gross national
product goes to pay billions in interest to the banks. This is robbery,
yet you never hear much about it -- what we get are lies about belt
tightening and cutbacks. They obviously tell us we are guilty because
they sure don't want to admit that they are the ones really taking and
spending all of the money.

   In spite of the bad situation now is not the time to give up the
fight. You can help me by passing on this chain letter. I have also just

put up a web page on scanning at
http://www.interlog.com/~command/noscan.htm   Donate to groups listed
there as against scanning or form your own group and have it listed.
Perhaps you like to work alone --in that case come up with a personal
initiative to fight finger scanning or else e-mail me at
command@interlog.com with your ideas. You could also e-mail the Ontario
Government and Toronto City Council to voice your opposition. I have
listing of all Canadian politicians at

   Toronto Councilor Gordon Chong is the head of the Community and
Neighbourhood Services Committee that is bringing in scanning. Voice
your opposition to him at  councillor_chong@city.toronto.on.ca,

Gordon Chong - Don Parkway
Metro Hall, 55 John Street, Suite 232, Toronto, M5V 3C6
Phone: 416 392-4061  Fax: 416 392-4120
Ontario Premier Mike Harris has a web page at  -
You can contact him to voice opposition to his government's pushing of

Heather McVicar is the name of the unelected city employee in charge of
the pilot fingerscanning project
City Hall, 100 Queen Street West, Suite 21, Toronto, M5H 2N2

   Liberal MPP Mike Colle colle2@pathcom.com has opposed fingerscanning
in the legislature. You could e-mail him on the issue.
Councillor Layton is one of a number of councillors who opposed
fingerprinting - you could e-mail him asking for info on the current
situation  councillor_layton@city.toronto.on.ca,

Thank you for your time,
Gary L. Morton,
Citizen of Toronto
Member of the Democracy Model Group

The Case against Finger-Scanning by Gary Morton


1. The system is not philosophically in line with democracy. A
government of the people has a duty to show faith and trust in the
people it represents. A democratic government that stigmatizes its
citizens is stigmatizing itself. It is certainly not the job of the
government to criminalize the people through the use of technology that
will catch everyone who commits small offenses. Freedom of expression
and freedom of speech flourish only when a government places a degree of

liberty in the hands of its people through trust.

2. The second democracy argument -- You can refuse to use a government
snitch line, because you feel it is damaging to humanity to snitch on
others and promote the sort of lack of trust prevalent in totalitarian
nations. The same must be true for finger scanning. Citizens have the
democratic right to refuse to participate and to demand that it be

3. Freedom of religion - You must have the right to refuse scanning on
religious grounds as books like the Bible oppose such forms of control.

4. Where (biometrics) scanning is brought in as a measure to control the

poor, it is a measure that stigmatizes and discriminates. They talk of
scanning to catch welfare cheats, but not of scanning to catch the
wealthy cheating on their income tax. People in favour of scanning have
a personal problem in that they can't get over their tendency of seeing
the public as cheats and criminals. I don't think their personal
problems should become legislation that victimizes others. Often it is
argued that it is the people at the top, who want to bring in scanning,
who are the ones who can't be trusted

5. Since scanning can't be applied fairly or universally it should
simply not be used at all.

6. A democratic and progressive nation like Canada should not be
championing methods that will lead to police state control in other
less-fortunate nations.

7. One province-wide system of finger-scanning security will collapse if

the system is cracked. Hackers will like this system because it is a
system that can be cracked. There will be Big-Time fraud, and the
taxpayer and the government will be sorry.

8. Unjust governments will use systems like finger-scanning to target
and suppress members of opposition groups. Scanning will also be used to

enforce unjust laws.

9. There is lack of public control as foreign banks create and provide
the system. They have the power to use the system for their own benefit.

And aside from that they are really the new corporate welfare bums. Call

them Corporate Privatization Bums or sharks that will rob us of freedom
as they feed forever at the public trough.

10. The argument used to justify the use of finger scanning is that this

system will reduce fraud. This is false, as the incidence of fraud in
the welfare system has always been low, much lower than fraud in other
systems, such as income tax or health care. Scanning statistics have
been fixed. People were just cut off through new rules and the savings
were incorrectly attributed to scan technology. So the truth is that not

only is it a dangerous violation of civil liberties it is a form of
fraud conducted by governments and banks.

   Ways to Fight Finger Scanning  in the Megacity -- The argument that
fingerscanning will reduce welfare fraud is silly. Nearly all welfare
fraud is because of undeclared income and not double dipping and that
means scanning does little. The argument from council that it makes
direct deposit possible and eliminates cheques is also false because
people on Family Benefits already have direct deposit. An ordinary bank
card is good enough for that. And for general ID, a health card, which
all Ontarians have, should be enough.
Section 8 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms reads, "Everyone has the

right to be secure against unreasonable seach or seizure."

   Fingerscanning is an unreasonable search in that taking a fingerprint

denotes that a criminal investigation is being undertaken. To do this to

all people on welfare or all Canadians as proposed by people like Mike
Harris and Gordon Chong is simply appalling. We must challenge them
legally and take strong protest action. The actions must be maintained
even if scanning is brought in -- It might be possible to use the
Toronto experiment to get media attention and discredit this
totalitarian measure before it comes in nationwide.

Graeme Bacque
(#2226799 on ICQ)
++Question and challenge *all* human 'authority'++