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

Earth First! Journal earthfirst at igc.org
Sun Aug 22 09:02:16 BST 1999

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Gavin Parker wrote:
>> So regardless of 'ownership'  ( how defined please) how will land be
>> regulated and used? This is what interests me most - landowners
>> are simply tenants -  lets change their tenancy agreement!
>Well, once it is ours we can set up local auction houses and
>sell leases at auction. I would like the length of leases to
>be determined locally by democracy.
>If it was down to me, I would declare this country a member
>of the Commonwealth in which all rent from the land we own
>is shared equally between us.
>In which case, the income from all the auction houses in the
>Commonwealth would be added and divided by the number of
>people to determine everybody's share.
>Others say, sod that global contract, we'll run our auction
>house and share the money locally, which I am not sure
>about. I have heard it said that it would work if free
>immigration was allowed. I am worried about hostility to
>immigrants. If people in some area have prime land, they
>won't want people moving in and sharing their privilege.
>Best thing would be to try both and see what problems come
>Natural resources must have prices that rise as more are
>used. Rather than share the profits from oil sales
>immediately, we could save it to share out in twenty years.
>Money leaving our time and going to the future, will reduce
>our ability to guzzle all the resources up and also provides
>compensation to the next generation in lieu of the resources
>we guzzled.
>> Some might find our terms unacceptable and prefer to sell up...but
>> of course if its played right no one will want to buy it except the
>> state or mutuals...
>I don't think we have a right to demand that landowners put
>the community before their own family, because so few of the
>rest of us would tolerate the state demanding such loyalty
>from us.
>I think we should tell the landowners of Scotland a tale to
>break their hearts and ask them to bequeath their land (not
>the house necessarily) but the land it is on to the
>community when they die.
>Let us tell them that the people in the olden days imagined
>and declared they owned the land forever, but did nothing to
>deserve to own it at all.
>We can tell them that those who buy land have made no
>contract with us. They have made a contract with the
>individual they bought it from, but not us. So if we refuse
>to recognize their ownership, we are not doing violence, nor
>breaking any contract or promise, nor are we stealing
>something that was never property.
>We can tell them that the land, being a resource necessary
>to life, must be guaranteed to every new human being born.
>Otherwise they are born with no land because the previous
>generation has claimed it and decided they own it from now
>on. They are required to work and pay for permission to live
>on our planet.
>It is beyond the right of any legal system to grant
>permanent ownership of land because by doing so you are
>stealing it from the unborn. Most of our children will be
>born slaves until land ownership is abolished.
>Then tell the owners of Scotland we don't want to know
>whether they decide to leave the land to us; we will wait
>until they die to find out. We don't want to judge them or
>put them under moral pressure to put community before
>family. If they choose to, they prove they are better people
>than most of us who stand to benefit.
>I reckon you could get a big chunk of it back that way and
>can use the rent from that, to buy the rest.
>> The word 'ownership' obscures many evils and pitfalls. I would go
>> as far as to say that it obstructs our thinking on land matters -
>> getting beyond such a mutable and amorphous concept is boxing
>> clever?
>Do you mean planning permission? I would have thought that
>land use would be determined by the market. When people buy
>leases they will no doubt plan to make the most of it. Local
>people must be the jury on local planning permission and the
>problem now is, how to get them interested?
>I think we need a computer program which displays our local
>area as a map on which a little red right flashes like a bat
>signal on any plot of land for which a planning application
>is current. This could make a person feel like a general,
>looking down on it all and in control. By clicking on any
>area they can find out how the land is used. The flashing
>red light means, land use on this plot may be changing.
>So you arm people with this map software and tell them it is
>their only weapon as they stand alone to defend England
>against the invading tide of greedy, morally-nihilistic
>property developers who want to build a car park in their
>area. Package the software with an armband and a picture of
>the Queen and advertise it in the Daily Telegraph.
>Bish bash bosh, problem solved. Don't thank me; being a
>genius is a privilege and I just want to give something
>Stephen Bint
>ebates.com. Earn up to 25% cash back for shopping online at 75 stores
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