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Dirt-Under-The-Nails Hippy

Joined: 29 Apr 2008
Posts: 542

Location: Las Vegas

Post Almost everything.  Reply with quote
Society, Commune, Revolution

The first step is obviously social. We must first find interested people who are swilling to dedicate time and energy into such an endeavor.
Outreach should probably be passive, as opposed to active, outreach. This means that we donít go searching for people to populate an area, of course, but instead take into careful consideration those people we know personally or are coming to know better. Once the organization of this happens on the base level (we have a framework and a plan), then we invite them to the project and ask for their input. Invitations should be reserved to people who are deemed unerringly trustworthy.
Once a basic framework has been laid out and a decent enough body of people accumulated, then the real work begins. However, how big a group we should have is up to debate. It was suggested 10, but Iíve come to the conclusion that for the first autonomous cell could feasibly be up to 50 or a 100 people organized into affinity groups averaging about 6 originally (until people become more acquainted with each other and the groups can merge). Iíll address issues of dissent, etc., later.

However, it would be prudent to decide, before doing any work, if we wish to have any orientation for this. Examples include intellectual, academic, autonomous, clandestine, insurgent, etc.
My personal suggestion is an intellectual, academic, autonomous, and clandestinely insurgent & subversive commune. Specifically try to recruit people who are capable of educating people pre-k through post-graduate. It was an idea of mine to create a free ďcollegeĒ that was an across-the-board education level establishment that was self-sustaining and autonomous, and one of the first steps would be to find people capable of teaching in nearly every field while also being non-authoritarian, etc. This would be quite the endeavour, but if the people here are willing to go in, I will do absolutely all the work in regards to gathering people who are willing to be dedicated and necessary educational resources. In fact, I have been and am working in this direction, but Iíd also be willing to participate in this commune.
Intellectual and academic should be easily understood with what I just explained. Autonomous is something you guys have already been toying with the idea of. Iíll lay out a framework for that in a bit. Clandestinely insurgent and subversive: still waging social, political, and economic revolution by means of outreach. The underground buildings mentioned in the STW forums would be really good for this, in part. Iíve also got tentative schematics for an aboveground/underground compound with surrounding defenses, harvestable countryside, and natural defenses. Propaganda, literature, etc.: we could make and distribute it ourselves.

Also, as another precursor, I think that we should give specific attention to helping facilitate the creation and operation of additional communes starting using our framework, and plan to integrate them for inter-cooperation between communes so that the workload for each drops drastically. The less time we have to use focusing on survival means the more time we have for leisure and everyday life, effectively eliminating dead time and making life interesting and enjoyable to live.

Now, I think Iíve babbled enough on preliminary logistics. Here goes the meat of the endeavor.

First: land. It may be possible for us to obtain complete non-profit status, and thus our land and resources may be exempted from taxation. This would be interesting to look into.
In the case of location, though Iowa is pretty nice, there are a few ďmusts.Ē We must have access to water. A river or stream is optimal because it provides a natural defense, easy way to eliminate waste (so long as itís in small quantities and biologically friendly), and drinkable water. The disadvantages of a river are: groundwater, flooding and loss of crops and supplies, mosquitoes, and humidity. Mosquitoes and humidity can cause issues with disease. If we choose to move away from a river, then looking at the groundwater level during the course of any given year is important so that we have access to well-water. If we have plains, then we have the benefits of harvestable soil and high visibility, but the deficits of less defensibility (though it is still defensible, tactics will change and we wonít have the advantage of a natural barrier) and less available water and sanitation.
Climate is also important to consider. Any place with harsh winters (of which Iím sure Iowa is included), rates of survival go down, especially if one wants autonomy. Desert would be a good solution to winter, and summers are easily survivable if one is near water (though miserable if you donít have climate control like air conditioning), but most people arenít up for that, and the issue of harvestable soil goes out the window. Itís extremely nutrient-rich and harder than fuck to tear up and plant. I sincerely recommend finding somewhere relatively moderate in both directions. Not harsh winters, not harsh summers. Harsh winter to me means lots of snow, rain, and temperatures less than 10 degrees on a regular basis. Harsh summer to me means dry and 115 degrees and anywhere above that.
Iím somewhat inclined toward certain regions of Colorado, but I think lots of research should be done before selecting a location.

Second: supplies. Food, water, shelter, and tools are must-haves: everything else is luxury at first.
Food can be taken care of by agriculture, of course. It was presented that we could possibly use human feces, but if you guys were keeping and eye on the news, that spinach recall a while back was for exactly that reason: human feces was used as manure and e. coli poisoning was the result. However, using mulch made from human hair, vegetables, fruits, dead leaves, uprooted grass, etc., is an easy way of enriching soil. Hydroponics is also a thing we can consider, as well as greenhouses. The former means that we could grow plans effectively by simply putting them in nothing but water. You do this usually with cuttings or shoots, but Iím pretty sure there are other ways. The latter means that we could have food growing year round and we could control climate to some degree to enable the harvesting of plants not native to the region.
Corn, potatoes, soy, and wheat are good things to grow in nearly any climate. If there is a stream, creek, or river nearby, rice is also a good consideration. Aside from staples, specific herbs are probably a good idea to grow. Rosemary, mint, valerian, monkshood, ginger, willow, thyme, sage, and garlic are good for medicinal purposes. Meat should probably only be hunted, and only when extremely convenient, if it is to be eaten at all.
Water is a matter of groundwater, aquifers, springs, creeks, streams, and rivers. Purification can be done with rudimentary filters and is a good idea. Additionally, greywater irrigation is a good thing to consider (recycling water in a semi-closed system).
Shelter can be done any number of ways. One possibility is the creation of a central compound with surrounding farmland and a courtyard for community activities/enjoyment. Another is low-impact housing that uses the natural terrain. If you know something about insulation, then this next proposal is an even better idea. You dig a hole. A big hole. Line it first with tires, then cement inside of and between the tires. Have a layer of mud on the outer layer. Use aluminum cans as the next layer of insulation, then mud, then more tires, then cement. The temperature will remain relatively constant year-round with this system. Pre-planning the housing layout and taking into account public (for lack of a better word) areas and facilities should be a priority. A third option is something that has been proposed as a method for low income housing and has been implemented somewhat successfully: stacked metal cargo containers being linked and outfitted for housing. More possibilities are sure to exist, and more research should be done.
Most tools should be collected beforehand and upkeep should be a strong priority for the entire commune. Autonomous creation of tools and materials would be a long-term goal (thought that term would be shortened if we had the benefit of academia).

As for electricity, power, fuel, etc., this may be an easier issue than previously conceived. Have you ever heard of a ďFresnel lens?Ē It takes light and concentrates it to such a degree that magnifying glasses are enfeebled. The damned things can melt asphalt, metal, whatever. Want steam power? Water plus Fresnel lens. Want a forge? Cement tube plus fan plus vent plus thermometer plus Fresnel lens. Want an oven? Metal box plus Fresnel lens. Want to start a fire? Fresnel lens. When there isnít sunlight: rub two sticks together and conserve electricity.
However, I think that we should avoid too much dependence on electronics and instead invest ourselves in mechanic devices and mundane tools. It would make the things we are getting involved in more personal, more autonomous, and give us the added benefit of experience, intuition, and ease of preparedness in case we lose access to something electronic. Thatís just me though. Iíll give you more information on that when Iím finished drafting my formal proposal for the SEE (Society for Everybody Else).
Employing multiple methods of electricity generation is the best way to go. Donít depend to much on one thing. Wind, water, heat, steam, light, treadmill: whatever works.

Once we have an operating commune (and what I have written so far is by no means all there is to consider), we can work on expansion, helping start and cooperating with other communes, and working to subvert the world. However, starting out legal and then seceding is definitely a possibility. Another thing to worry about is the governmentís instinctual fear of communism or something operating outside of conventional economics. Expect to have laws passed to disfavor this, have police or military action taken against us, and to be harassed, threatened, prosecuted, etc., for doing nothing wrong.

And Iím really, really liking the underground complexes. An added advantage to them is natural refrigeration when you get deep enough!
Tue Apr 29, 2008 4:05 am View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website AIM Address Yahoo Messenger MSN Messenger

Joined: 23 Apr 2008
Posts: 469

Post Reply with quote
...woah, I think you just tried addressing every issue of this commune in a single post.  It's nice that you have a plan however this whole forum was meant to address these issues.  When you compress it all into a single post it makes the discussion difficult because you mentioned many different things all at once.  This means that everyone will be responding to different topics in the same thread.  Do you get my point?

Any way here's what I think about what you've said

Population: If you didn't here we have 20 acres to work with so 50-100 people is inconceivable.  I think 10-20 is more reasonable.

Education: I really like what you said about education.  I had considered this as well.  A major college isn't practical with our current limitations but I do like the idea of offering free classes in what ever we know.

Other Communes: In my advertisement at I mentioned that any one who wanted to start a commune could use this forum as a base for that.  So I suppose I should inform all of you as well, If you have land our know someone who does and would like to start a commune I will make a section of this forum for you.

Land:  We have twenty acres the composition of which I don't know.  I like the idea of becoming officially non-profit.  Have you been to Iowa? It's all plains.  It's really good farm land  I don't know if there is a river or not but I will once I find out where exactly my land is.  We can't exactly be picky with our land.  It costs about $3,000 per acre so I'm going to stick with what I have.  The climate is Ok.  You might find the winter harsh but you don't know harsh winters till you've had oral sex in an igloo in -10 degree weather.  I'm from Minnesota so even being 100 miles farther south will seem balmy to me. That aside though if we build underground temperature won't be an issue we'll just have to preserve food to make it through the winter.

Food: About the feces... oopse.  Hydroponics isn't "just water" it has to have the proper nutrients in it.  You can look into how to get the nutrients in it if you want but it doesn't seem effective to me.  Green houses are definitely something we'll consider.
Tue Apr 29, 2008 7:54 pm View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Dirt-Under-The-Nails Hippy

Joined: 29 Apr 2008
Posts: 542

Location: Las Vegas

Post Reply with quote
lol. Sorry. I got into it in microsoft word. I suppose it would be prudent to break it all apart so that each area can be addressed singularly. I'm used to discussion forums in which people take each thing and address the proposed argument in a parallel manner. It makes it so that connections between topics are more likely to occur: there's danger in too much information just as there is danger in considering each thing singularly and falling into functional fixedness. The more things we can permutate into each other and make into 1 issue with 1 solution instead of 2 issues with 4 solutions, the better.

I'll get right on dividing, conquering my own mind, and expounding upon each point probably later tonight.
Wed Apr 30, 2008 1:51 pm View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website AIM Address Yahoo Messenger MSN Messenger

Joined: 23 Apr 2008
Posts: 469

Post Reply with quote
Ok, since you'll be repeating this all elsewhere I'll lock it just to avoid a confusing and crowded discussion.

Wed Apr 30, 2008 3:31 pm View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
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