The Absurdity of Land Ownership

Indian protesters from Vale do Javarí in Belém By Fabio Rodrigues Pozzebom/ABr - CC BY 3.0 br,

How has it come to pass that a tiny handful “own” the vast majority of this tiny spaceship we call the Earth?

We live on a rock rotating at 1,000 miles an hour on its axis and circling a nuclear furnace we call the sun at around the same speed.  We have no means to escape to another planet (even assuming we could find something suitable) and we are bunched up like 7 billion rats in a cage cutting each other’s throats for food, light, shelter and water.

Woundedknee 1891 - A mass grave being dug for frozen bodies from the 1890 Wounded Knee Massacre, in which the U.S. Army killed 150 Lakota people, marking the end of the American Indian Wars
Wounded Knee 1891 – A mass grave being dug for frozen bodies from the 1890 Wounded Knee Massacre, in which the U.S. Army killed 150 Lakota people, marking the end of the American Indian Wars

It is reckoned that two acres of land would suffice for self sufficiency and there are estimated to be 16 billion acres of habitable land on earth.

So given that spaceship earth has to provide sustenance for us all how come we have let a small minority own the vast majority of land on earth?  Is private ownership of our very means of survival a defensible proposition?

Let Them Have It All, And Be Done With It! (1882): A satirical cartoon from the German language edition of Puck Magazine, critical of those who are carving up the country for their own benefit.
Let Them Have It All, And Be Done With It! (1882): A satirical cartoon from the German language edition of Puck Magazine, critical of those who are carving up the country for their own benefit.

And how about water? And energy?  How come the means of production and supply are in private ownership? How does it make any sense at all that the few should hold the many to ransome?

Well I guess it is all about ethnic cleansing across the millennia.  “They” have what “you” want and so you exterminate them. In the old days extermination was free for all and quite the way to go: the Norman Conquest, the indigenous North and South American Indian and on and on…….

"The protectors of our industries". Cartoon showing Cyrus Field, Jay Gould, Cornelius Vanderbilt, and Russell Sage, seated on bags of "millions", on large heavy raft being carried by workers.
“The protectors of our industries”. Cartoon showing Cyrus Field, Jay Gould, Cornelius Vanderbilt, and Russell Sage, seated on bags of “millions”, on large heavy raft being carried by workers.

Nowadays we in the West tend to frown on actual extermination (at least in our own back yard) but we allow death by commerce instead. Amazon destroys the little guy with a corner shop, factory farming screws the peasant, oil and timber companies evict the natives in the rain forest. So its business as usual.

What will happen when we conquer space and find some green and pleasant land in the sky? The same old thing of course: the Robber Barons will own Mars and every other planet.

Down with greed and violence (physical and commercial).  It is time to reform and re-organise our society.

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