17 August 2010

Your Freedom - Why Did They Do It?

The government's Your Freedom site is an embarrassing mess. It is full of suggestions that are wither well-rehearsed opinions on the issues of the day, nothing to do with restoring liberty, or repeat suggestions. The whole project has basically become an online stress ball for people who believe what they read in the papers.

So what's the point? Practically none of the 'ideas' there are even slightly inspired. I really hope that the government didn't set the site up as a cynical gesture to give the false impression of fake interest in the views of the great unwashed. The public's response if nothing of substance comes of the site will be equally cynical, and the government is pretty brain-dead if it didn't realise this.
But Cameron, Clegg and their spads aren't stupid.

So allow me to indulge in a little fantasy: isn't it possible that they need the public to suggest things that the government itself doesn't want to be seen suggesting itself? If there was a can of worms the coalition feel needs opening, but doesn't want to be the ones to first tug the ring-pull, this website would be the ideal cover.

Now what can of worms could the coalition have in mind? Allow me to delve deeper into my happy fantasyland: what if that issue was drug policy reform? It's not totally crazy - both the Prime Minister and his Deputy have a history on this. David Cameron went on record before he became his party's leader talking about the decades of failure of drugs policy and the need to consider alternatives, as did Nick Clegg in his MEP days. The problem is those pesky tabloid journalists who would tear them and all their distant relatives a new one if they dared suggest any course other than prohibition. However if a consultation took place triggered by overwhelming public demands from the Your Freedom website (which was always bound to attract suggestions that prohibition should be repealed), this would be politically more manageable.

OK, back to reality - I think this is all unlikely! It's both too Machiavellian and would be too good to be true. But if it does happen, I reserve the right to shout 'I TOLD YOU SO' whilst grinning wildly (and possibly drooling slightly).

Anyway, stay tuned for my next blogpost on how the moon landings were faked ;)

1 comment:

Peter Reynolds said...

I can't believe our paths haven't crossed before