The URL alone is pretty striking: http://yourfreedom.hmg.gov.uk/
It's the pet project of U.K. Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, who has made civil liberties a priority of Britain's new coalition government. The site's langauge is even more remarkable. The first full sentence reads:
The Coalition Government is committed to restoring and defending your freedom – and we're asking you to participate.
The word "restoring" is rare candor. It acknowledges that the British government has taken a good amount of freedom in the first place, something governments are generally loathe to concede. Here's more refreshing language, describing what the site is all about:
We're working to create a more open and less intrusive society through our Programme for Government. We want to restore Britain's traditions of freedom and fairness, and free our society of unnecessary laws and regulations – both for individuals and businesses.
This site gives you the chance to submit, comment on, or vote for ideas about how we can do this. Your ideas will inform government policy and some of your proposals could end up making it into bills we bring before Parliament to change the law.
So if there are any laws or regulations you'd like us to do away with, then submit your idea. If you see ideas here already that you like the look of, then rate them and get them moved up the list. And if there's more you'd like to say, then talk to others in the comments section for each proposal.
It's time to have your say. After all – it's your freedom.
I suppose it remains to be seen what sort of actual policy changes the site inspires. But damn. This is certainly a good start. It's the kind of thing that might—just might—warm even the jaded, liberty loving hearts of Hit & Run commenters.