Taking Occupy forwards: UK 'Where's My Acre?' campaign

Zardoz tony at cultureshop.org.uk
Sun Feb 12 14:14:16 GMT 2012

Taking Occupy forwards: UK 'Where's My Acre?' campaign
12Feb12 - Tony Gosling

Political movements are far more effective than the City owned political parties, but it does seem we are coming to a moment in the NATO zone where the twin pincers of international loan sharks' financial death spiral and soft wars in Iraq, Libya, Syria and on and on towards nuclear are turning in on us. After all nowadays the Military Industrial Complex' Mafia don't rob banks, they own them. When the Arab League comes up with a report they don't agree with NATO have the power to censor it. And journalists don't have the integrity, spine or the power to tell us. 

Report of the Head of the League of Arab States Observer Mission to Syria. December 24, 2011 to January 18, 2012

The two pincers are one. The austerity lie is not only economic illiteracy it is rolling out a red carpet for a new Hitler. They want to steer the auspicious year of 2012 to steal all out hearts and minds in the ensuing crisis.

So the rough numerical equivalence of acres in the United Kingdom with the total population is not just testimony to the unwanted intrusion of the hectare. There is a crying need to wrest all the land back using as a model the traditional forms of pre-enclosure land tenure embodied in Laxton, Nottinghamshire and in the Scottish Crofting movements. 

The spearhead of the Occupy Movement has been, for me, the anti-eviction teams that have been of both practical and morale-boosting significance in the cities where they have been employed and will become the enduring message crystallised from countless person-hours of struggle now being taken apart piece, by Parson Platt piece... and of course infiltrated by every creeping agency of spiritual worms and the money power. So occupy camps & associated squats will continue to be fascinating places to play 'spot the spook'.

The Occupy movement was not entirely unexpected but was indeed somewhat predicted in my 2009 editorial, comissioned for The Land magazine and submitted, but sadly never included (copied below). 

As the militant 'secularisation' of Britain continues with the outlawing of prayers at Bideford town council this week the question of the Queen's legal ownership of all freeholds in UK land 'In the name of God' is again in question. If she or her successor Prince Charles, who takes delights in being decended from Vlad The Impaler (the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula), do not believe in the God of the Bible where does that leave his or her 'divine right' over the earth? It leaves it dead in the water. Which is where Davitt's Conradh na Talún, Winstanley's and Kett's de-inclosers come in. That's us folks.

English Civil War and the Diggers' Intuition 
The Campfire Revolution 

by Tony Gosling - June 2009 

Squatters are going up market. As liars loans are called in and gangster capitalists, outside the inner circle, are ejected from their Kitsch mansions, Mayfair squats are becoming regular news. 

In Birmingham 'Justice Not Crisis' are organising waves of group squats matching homeless people with empty homes and public buildings. From their squatted Dalston headquarters, Passing Clouds have a minimal overhead business model for us all 
 and one of the funkiest clubs in North London. Anticipating the need for a "money free economy" the squatting group in Bristol have opened a Free Shop, a High Street version of the internet Free Cycle system. Everywhere the disposessed and the unsung are refusing to be ruled by a casino elite's money system. 

The twin conundrums of the War of Terror and the Financial Meltdown are making headlines daily but the real story is how we are responding to the folly of our ever more secretive, distant and reclusive 'betters'. 

This is by no means a NATO zone phenomenon. Churches in Mumbai, India have been buying tracts of arable land outside the city, handing it to unemployed urban families, and creating egalitarian villages from the ground up. They have called the latest Muktapur, 'Salvation Village'. 

Even the vision of what kind of Ecological new build we need to downshift our post industrial nation is being hotly challenged. Is it to be Prince Charles' £250k stone cladding Poundbury? A Persimmion EcoVillage? An elitist pseudo revolution is being prepared for us, signed off by 'The Borg'. 

An epic struggle is unfolding between ruddy-faced peasant activists and elitist accountants. Between profit margins and common sense. Between whether the land is a commodity to be traded like barrels of oil on the open market or a fundamental human right. It's unlikely to be pretty. 

With justice, peace and with peace, beauty. Visions for a just future are being hotly contested around the campfire. Can ecological justice accommodate private banking? Or the soulless legal 'person' of the Corporation? Can there be any hint of justice with war criminals in government? How utterly sunk is the media? How best to organise? 

The G20s greatest financial confidence trick in history looks sure to bring all these issues to a head, to our doors. A new generation of Levellers, Ranters and Diggers are rising to the challenge. 

Meanwhile new light is being thrown on the true origins, in the 1630s, of England's first Civil War. Historian W. E. Tate points out that Charles I acted decisively to make enclosure 'depopulation' a criminal offence. 

'From 1635-8 enclosure compositions [fines] were levied in thirteen counties, some six hundred persons in all being fined, and the total fines levied amounting to almost £50,000. Enclosers were being prosecuted in the Star Chamber as late as 1639.' 

Though he may not have had the detail, it seems Gerrard Winstanley and his Diggers were right, recklessly lucrative land privatisation of Cromwell's merchant class was at the heart of the seven year struggle. Revolution it was not. 

Quite whether our present struggle pans out to such extremes of the BBC's 1975 series 'Survivors' God only knows, but it will be the severest test yet of our ability to work together. To open meetings and pause before big decisions in silence or prayer will ensure we don't lose sight of the spiritual. 

We all have a part to play on the way to the first Quaker George Fox's vision of 'a thousand points of light'. "Whether England shall be the first Land, or some others, wherein Truth shall sit down in triumph." 

* The English Village Community and the Enclosure Movements by W. E. Tate, Victor Gollancz, London, 1967. p. Chapter 11, Enclosure and the State: (A) In Tudor and Early Stuart Times. 


--- In Diggers350 at yahoogroups.com, Tony Gosling <tony at ...> wrote:
> Was SO inspired by this I raved and ranted about 
> it on the radio here in Bristol tonight
> UK Riots, Eviction Support Squads & Western Land RIghts
> Subtitle:  Bush & Blair in jail & learning the lessons of occupy
> http://www.radio4all.net/index.php/program/57619
> When the occupy camp has been evicted the occupy 
> protesters go in groups of ten or so to stay in 
> the homes of those about to be evicted by the 
> mortgage companies - this has the sniff of utter genius about it!!
> Take Back the Land on Rachel Maddow 12/16/2011
> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMm9pf30Pe0
> Max Rameau of the Take Back the Land- Movement is 
> on the Rachel Maddow show on December 16, 2011.
> http://listen-again.ujimaradio.com/get.php?web=ujimaradio_08-02-12_3-20_1328731206.mp3 
> http://listen-again.ujimaradio.com/get.php?web=ujimaradio_08-02-12_3-21_1328734809.mp3 
> Max Rameau of the Take Back the Land- Movement is 
> on the Rachel Maddow show on December 16, 2011.
> The Occupy Movement gets much closer to the real 
> solution; fast forward to 4:25:
> <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMm9pf30Pe0>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMm9pf30Pe0 
> Arty bristol squattersSouth West leftiesMoeen's 
> listPassing_CloudsDan_GlazebrookRuth 
> UnderwoodSusan_Lindauerbristol housing actionBristol CLT
> -- 
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