After I'd placed my order, the order confirmation screen had a compelling advert from Unicef, looking for donations. I thought 'yes, I'd like to donate'.
So, I clicked on the advert and, encouragingly, I was presented with a single box to enter an amount, with a button next to it, saying "Donate". At this point I wondered if this was going to usefully allow me to donate via my Amazon account.
Alas, I wasn't! On clicking "Donate" I got presented with a form with lots of required fields to give my name and address, so that Unicef can presumably waste my donation sending me dead trees to ask me to donate again and again.
This is a common thing. I've been chased for years since giving a good sized donation to the Red Cross Tsunami Appeal.
So, what's this got to do with liberal democracy, the subject of this blog?
It's about choice. I would like to give a donation to a charity, not add myself to endless databases. I would like to give them money, not an even greater value of my time filling in forms and then later opening post and contacting them to ask the to stop sending me their contribution to the problems they claim they are committed to resolving.
Many many websites have a Paypal 'donate' button, and they make it easy to just send them your money, without the need for a marriage license (that's a rant for another day!).
So. Please please, all you charities. Let us donate!