‘Freetown Butlerania (formerly 91 Gillespie Gardens)’

“If this anarchist commune is to last, we’re going to need some groundrules.”

‘Freetown Butlerania (formerly 91 Gillespie Gardens)’

‘Freetown Butlerania (formerly 91 Gillespie Gardens)’

by Pierce Butler, anti-authoritarian activist

Look, comrades. We all remember the early days; halcyon times when anything went. And I loved it just as much as you did. Billy Bragg on the hi-fi until gone eleven. Letting the dishes pile up three feet high because cleanliness is a bourgeois concept. We did all have a lot of fun smashing up the television, even if some of us didn’t think it was a totally great idea at the time and were probably right.

Hey, I’m not one to judge. That was a good time, and The Man can’t take it away from us.
But—and it saddens me to say it—we have to face facts. We can’t survive as a lawless utopia if we don’t implement a few basic standards everyone is expected to live up to. So, from now on, everyone’s got to contribute their fair share to the soy-milk fund (I hope everyone remembers how we feel about money?). Ffion’s going to be in charge of the new chores rota. And no more reading non-approved literature (I’m not the only one who’s noticed Jeremy Clarkson on the Glorious Bookshelf, am I?).

We must all pull together on this. It has after all been decided by the leaders – for those of you who weren’t at the meeting in mine and Jamie’s shed yesterday, me and Jamie are the leaders – and we’ll be distributing copies of the new Commune Code tomorrow at the Cafeteria Of The Coming Revolution (which you may know as the Stoke Newington Pret A Manger). So it’s all official.

Oh, I know what you’re thinking. “Pierce is a sell-out! Here he is, preaching the values of freedom from authority, and he expects us to kow-tow to what he says!” But that’s not what this is about. We all want freedom from laws, don’t we? All I’m saying is that our society needs to enforce some social norms. Think of the Code not as law, but as a set official commands backed up with the threat of sanction.

It’s totally different. Just to make sure these social norms are going to work (without laws!), all comrades found in breach will have access to food and water cessated, and normal going-out rights suspended. Justice demands nothing less.

If our radical message is to prosper, it’s vital that we pull together. After all, I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you that dissent is antithetical to the cause! (But, to be on the safe side, it’s in the Code, rule D.72.) So let’s put your differences aside and present a united front to the rest of the world: we need the sheeple to take us seriously if we’re ever going to get anywhere!

Forward!

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