09 June 2005

Stupid Li(n)e

Over at Kevin Shockey's Portal al Exito, he points out that you have to register off-line to access Puerto Rico's e-government system online.

Bril. Liant.

So, based on that logic, my e-mails should be sent through the Post Office, my online tax payments are to be made with paper checks and my online requests for documents must be picked up at the nearest government office, a site reminiscent of cheesy zombie movies.

Did The Jenius already say bril? And liant?

Ostensibly the purpose is to protect citizen's identities. Bull. Poppycock. And drivel. The threat of identity theft has been reduced to near-negligible levels as any bank or e-commerce website can prove. Danger still exists, but to claim that registering off-line is the way to handle this "concern" is stupid. Let me be blunter: it's a lie.

It is stupid because solutions exist and better solutions are being developed all the time. Furthermore, unless the whole investment in the pathetic excuse for e-government We have was laced with waste and graft (as unlikely as sunrises, The Jenius believes) then We must conclude The Fools screwed up (and Us) royally.

The "off-line for citizen's protection" line is a lie because The Fools have no concern about that, but are very concerned about what an e-government system can do. It represents something The Fools cannot accept: citizen access to government. Anything The Fools cannot understand is a threat, so everything more complex than a door or a towel is a threat. The Internet and its obvious power to the individual is The Fools' worst nightmare.

Is a true e-government effort for Puerto Rico thus an impossibility? No. The Fools can always be led by proposals that appeal to their base self-interest, even if means doing something right for once. We can gamble on that. We have no choice.

The Jenius Has Spoken.

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