[diggers350] Re: Ownership...ermm then what?

Gavin Parker Gavin.Parker at surrey.ac.uk
Wed Aug 18 13:22:35 BST 1999

List members, fighters for land reform,

Rory is right in many ways with what he says - hence my 
comments earlier regarding 'ownership' as being somewhat of a red 
herring. It is about rights and responsibilities and how we as a 
society (ies) decide to regulate our actions and claims over land 
and produce of the land.

Although the Crown (and I do take issue with Rory when he says 
that the Crown is the representative of the people) does 
theoretically 'own' land, the sovereign has no real power - where the 
Crown does have more power is as an individual landowner i.e over 
crown estate land. This power is only given through our laws via the 
state and Parliament (cf Leviathan). 

These laws are based centrally on an assumption about private 
property and then about how to 'protect' private property (cf. John 
Locke and the doctrine of possessive individualism). What we can 
effectively do is appropriate regulatory mechanisms (e.g TLIO 
manifesto objectives relating to rethinking planning and planning 
considerations). In this way we can revolutionaise the control of 
land. As previous mailers have said, this control of land is then in 
the name of a true commonwealth. Where the UK state and many 
others have gone wrong (time for personal opinion now...) is that 
the planning system, as an example, has been appropriated by 
class interests who wish to do nothing more than maintain / 
increase the value of 'their' land / property.

My first mail a few weeks ago on this alluded to some of the 
measures that previous (Labour) governments have attempted to 
put in place to address such inequity - all have failed or been 
simply repealed by Tory governments. 

A softly, softly approach can assist a full on approach - I think we 
need to make sure that we fight on all fronts.

What 'right to roam' does, for example, is unravel the illusion of 
ownership by bringing a right (of access / non-exclusive use)  from 
the private to the public domain. This after all the arguing may 
engender part of the cultural change that is needed to begin 
rethinking and rebelieving that a differrent way of using land can 
work and can work to all our advantage.


Send reply to:  	diggers350 at egroups.com
From:           	Rory Kett <kett99 at hotmail.com>
To:             	diggers350 at egroups.com
Date sent:      	Wed, 18 Aug 1999 11:53:32 GMT
Subject:        	[diggers350] Re: Ownership...ermm then what?

Let's get this straight

There is only ONE land OWNER in Britain namely the crown, thgat 
is the
foundation of ALL peoperty law. All that anyone else owns is 
'property' ie
rights to certain uses of the land eg the right to live there, recieve
tthe profits from the land, rent it out etc.

The Crown, as representative of the people Always retains some 
rights over
any piece of land such as, the right to enforce laws passed by it's
parliament, collect taxes on profuits made on the land, move troops 
it in times of war and so on. To do otherwise would be to place that 
outside the juristiction of the state.

Thus it is possible for several people to own different rights over the
same piece of land eg. one person can farm it, another has the rights to
fish in a river that flows through it, another to shoot rabbits, the
general public a right to walk there and so on.

When people talk of 'land ownership' they are refering to property,
rights, tenure and useage.

If you want I'm willing to run a workshop on this at the Autum gathering
as it can provide one of our strongest arguments ie that we already have
land 'nationalisation' and because a private individual Cannot OWN land
absolutely the prinmciple of multiple tenure for different use is well
established in Britain.

Such a workshop is needed to provide a BASIC knowledge of where we are at
with land rights in Britain. Knowing that 'Ownership' is a legal fiction
means we can trash the arguments of the 'Country Landowners Association'
and other similar opponents of change. Their very name shows their
ignorance, maybe this should be the first step in any education programme 
mounted by TLIO.

I know that this will be a hard concept for people to grasp, after all the
whole system tells us the lie that there are 'landowners' but it simply
isn't true.

Rory Bowskill. BSc
Norfolk group


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Dr Gavin Parker
School of Management Studies
University of Surrey
Surrey GU2 5XH       

Direct Tel: +44 1483 876366
Fax: +44 1483 259387

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