Sunday, July 04, 2010

Nick Clegg's Coalition's YourFreedom website

I got the following email from Nick Clegg's people two days ago:

Dear Michael,

We've already scrapped ID cards. Now I'd like to ask you - which other laws do you want to scrap?

Your Freedom

The Liberal Democrats have always stood up for civil liberties, scrapping unnecessary laws and reducing the burden of regulation on businesses and charities.

In our manifesto, we proposed a Freedom Bill to roll back Labour's attacks on British civil liberties. In government, we are doing just that.

Yesterday I launched Your Freedom, a national dialogue on how to create a more open, inclusive society. Anyone can make suggestions about which laws we need to scrap and where we can cut red tape. You can also rate and comment on other people's suggestions. The best ideas will be put into practice – because this is a listening government.

This is the open government we have long campaigned for. So tell us about every time you've felt snooped on by the state, or had to fill in the same form three times. Help us put Liberal Democrat values into practice in Government.

I know people are talking about this up and down the country – so please do have your say and pass this message on to anyone who has ideas for Your Freedom.

All best wishes,

Nick Clegg Signature

Nick Clegg MP
Leader of the Liberal Democrats & Deputy Prime Minister

PS. Please use the Your Freedom website to let me know your ideas.

This is a great idea -- I hope it works -- and for a start I added to following discussion:

Taking photographs of a police officer

Freedom to photograph and video-record the police is the Archimedean point from which many other justice issues concerning the police can be witnessed, shared, discussed and resolved. Get this fixed and we'll be able to fix many other policing abuses.

For example, as a boring, employed, middle-class, white guy, I have never been to a demonstration or been a part of a radical organization, but it doesn't change the fact that I want to live in a free society and I want people to be allowed to demonstrate and show me what they see happening that's wrong. Police crack-downs on demonstrations are relevant to the democratic process, and as a voter and a taxpayer I should be allowed to witness what goes on through the eyes of people there, rather than simply the approved media outlets.

Repealing section 76 of the 2008 Counter-Terrorism Act and section 58A of the 2000 Terrorism Act so that they can no longer be abused by the police to prevent citizens from photographing and video-recording the police is essential in order to ensure that police -- as employees of the people granted special, limited privileges above certain laws -- respect those limits and are accountable to the people.