Someone read a letter to me that was in today's Daily Mail. It purported to be from a cyclist who said that cyclists should be taxed, that the police should throw the book at cyclists who break the Highway Code and that the big problem with cyclists is that there's no means of identifying them when they break the law.
Aside from the obvious arguments about "why tax bikes but not microwave ovens or lawnmowers", and the Highway Code not being law, I think the really important message here is the insertion of the meme about identifying cyclists.
Letters pages in the corporate media are the perfect place to start a meme - the idea isn't coming from a think-tank or a politician, but from a normal, newspaper-reading individual with whom the reader will instinctively identify.
Corporate interests have been peddling RFID chips for humans for years now. They have been offered to frightened parents who'd like to tag their children so they can find them after they have been abducted. The corporate engineers who created human RFID implants have said how they'd be pleased to have such a thing implanted into themselves for all the benefits that such a thing could bring in a future society. Our corporatist government (both Red and Blue teams) has been pushing bio-metric and RF ID cards for years. If you have a recent passport and carry it about with you then you are already carrying your RFID tag and can be tracked wherever RFID transceivers are positioned.
However, the public appetite for having a chip implanted into them that will allow their movements to be tracked and controlled has not yet met corporate expectations. What better way to get the ball rolling than to start by suggesting that some unloved minority be coerced into having these RFID implants?
What better minority than cyclists - a dangerous bunch of untaxed outlaws who run down pedestrians left, right and centre? If you don't believe that cyclists are a clear and present threat to you and your children then you just have to look at all the reports and letters in the corporate media, say the Daily Mail for example.
What better way to get a grip on these lycra louts than to make them all have RFID chips implanted into them? Transceivers on every traffic signal will be able to detect when they wrecklessly speed by at red, and a panda car can be waiting to arrest them when they get home. Make them pay an annual tax for their RFID chip and give a PFI contract to have corporate wardens patrol the streets with scanners empowered to demand payment from any cyclist whose chip is in arrears - on pain of immediate detention in a corporate PFI prison.
This might sound far-fetched today, but see how often this meme about the difficulty of identifying cyclists starts to crop up, and take note of who says it and in which forum. If you ever hear it being suggested by a corporate think-tank (all think-tanks are owned by corporations) then you'd better start deciding where you want the implant.