On the edge of a vast asphalt expanse in this northerly capital, behind a big-box retailer and a car wash, the future of democracy was taking shape.
Or at least so its participants hoped.
“What we think we could do is raise taxes on the wealthy even more,” said Ragnar Hannes Gudmundsson, as he typed on a conference-room laptop, sending bullet points to a projection screen.
“The estate tax should go from 20% to 30%. Doesn’t Finland have 30%?” said Haraldur Ingisson from across the table.
“And we have to take more steps to make sure that government doesn’t control the fisheries,” Olafur Sigurdsson piped in.
The men — six agricultural and office workers, many over the age of 40 — were ordinary citizens drafting legislation as part of a new vision for democracy. They had convened at the headquarters of the