It has taken me a lifetime to come to the point where I have this week (though I feel dreadful) launched www.HarrogateDistrictConsensus.org.
A Tory at school, then in Labour, with a one-year stint with the Lib Dems, with a dalliance with Change UK, I feel unusually placed to launch this political tool. Other than fascists, I admire all people who engage in politics, particularly those who stand for election, of all stripes. Giving your time and experience to matters political is an altruistic pursuit: to want to help people you will never meet – who will never thank you – is humanity at its finest.
Inevitably, technology will begin to play a role in our democracy. We must test the available technology. The Harrogate District Consensus uses Polis: I didn’t create this awesome technology. Polis was created by the wonderful people at the Computational Democracy Project in Seattle. Polis will improve and perhaps other technology will supplant it.
The granular polling data which Polis produces will assist all decision-makers, officers and candidates in advance of May’s important elections.
For posterity, here are some of the news reports written about HDC by the local democracy reporter, Jacob Webster:
The new anonymous voting tool to find Harrogate’s consensus on key issues