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• UNDERCURRENTS, the magazine of radical science and alternative technology [ISSN 0306 2392], was published from London, England, from 1973 to 1984 [No. 60]. This text version has been created in January 2009 by me, Chris [Hutton·]Squire [a member of the now·dissolved Undercurrents Collective], by OCRing scanned images of a print copy; the text has been re-paragraphed and partially corrected but it has NOT been completely checked against the original. Health & Safety Warning: The practical, technical and scientific information herein [though believed to be accurate at the time of publication] may now be out of date. CAVEAT LECTOR! The many stories that Undercurrents told will interest students of a period that is both too distant and too recent to be adequately documented on the Web. The moral, philosophical, social, economic and political opinions herein remain, in my opinion, pertinent to the much more severe problems we now face. Readers who wish correspond on any matters arising are invited to contact me via: chris[at]cjsquire.plus.com This pdf version is formatted in 15 pt Optima throughout, so as to be easily readable on screen; it runs to 126 pages [the print versions were 48 · 56 pp.]: readers wishing to print it out to read are recommended to use the text version and to reformat it. The many pictures that embellished the print version are sadly not included here. There no restrictions on the use of this material but please credit individual authors where credit is due: they are mostly still with us. Page numbers below are for this pdf version. The beginning of each section or article is indicated thus:

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Contents 6 EDDIES. The usual brew of News, Scandal, Gossip, Horror and Happiness. 23 28 LETTERS. Your chance to get your own back on us. CAN WE EVER TRUST THE NUCLEAR TECHNICIANS? Charles Wakstein argues that the problems involved in handling nuclear fuel reprocessing at Windscale are such that no one is really capable of doing the job safely. DE·SCHOOL. Romy Fraser explains what makes Kirkdale Free School tick, and why. WORKING ON ALL FRONTS. Dave Elliott analyses some of the issues thrashed out by the environmentalists, technologists and activists who attended the recent NATT A Conference. THE LEY·THAT NEVER WAS. Chris Hutton Squire recently put under the microscope one of the classic ley lines described by pioneer ley hunter Alfred Watkins, and found that it disappeared ... STEADY, REDDY. Would thousands of bio·gas plants really be a more appropriate aid to Indian development than one big, high technology fertiliser factory, as Prof A K N Reddy argued in Undercurrents 14? Not necessarily, argues Richard Disney. CITIZENS BAND: WHY IS IT BANNED? There’s no good reason why Britain should not establish a US·style Citizens Band, to allow individuals to communicate freely by radio, says Richard Elen. CABINETS CRYSTAL BALLS CRACKED. Undercurrents amateur futurologist Peter Sommer has been scrutinising the Cabinet Offices recent, reassuring, report on the Future of the World. THE WINDS OF CHARGE. Godfrey Boyle gives another progress report on the evolving Undercurrents wind generator. DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE. Woody urges that alter·nativists should withdraw their allegiance from Britain and invest it in a new, free nation, possibly called Albion. PEOPLES HABITAT: SPECIAL FEATURE Undercurrents’ con·tribution to Peoples Habitat. Kit Pedler begins by challenging the alternative society to start getting itself together. GARDEN VILLAGES OF TOMORROW. Britain urgently needs to increase her food production, and the establishment of new villages would provide an important means of doing so, argues Herbert
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Girardet. 74 THE WOOD FOOD GUIDE. Trees, says James Sholto.Douglas, are the crops with the greatest potential for feeding humanity, and re·vitalising the world IS rural areas. THE DO·IT·YOURSELF NEW TOWN. If local authorities simply supplied sites and essential services, and allowed people to build their own homes, the results, declares Colin Ward, would be far more satis·factory than the alienating New Towns being built for people by bureaucratic Development Corporations. SUNSHINE ON CORONATION STREET. Clive Watterson and Howard Liddell describe Hull College of Architectures scheme for "solar terraces" which could be largely self·sufficient FREEDOM RULES OK? The Lifespan community, high on the Yorkshire moors, is based on the ideals of libertarian educationalist AS Neill. Freer Spreckley explains how Lifespan is putting its ideals into action.




100 PLANNING PLOYS CAN BY.PASS THE BYE LAWS. Are there ways to avoid (or win) confrontations with the local planners if you're getting it together in the country"? Gary Burton lets us·in on a few trade secrets. 106 REVIEWS. The Political Police in,Britain, by Tony Bunyan. The Sirius Mystery, by Robert Temple. Noise, by Tony F Fletcher. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, by Robert Pirszig. The Sphinx and the Megaliths, by John Ivimy. Consumerism and the Ecological Crisis, by Alan Roberts. Nuclear Power, by Walt Patterson. BuSiness Civilisation In Decline, by Robert Hellbronner. Marijuana Growers Guide, by Mel Frank and Ed Rosenthal. Plus Roundup. 124 SMALL ADS 126 RADICAL TECHNOLOGY - out now! _______________________________________________________________
UNDERCURRENTS ISSN 0306 2392 Undercurrents is published every two months by Undercurrents Limited (Registered Office. 213 Archway Road, London N6 5BN), a democratic, non·profit company,. without share capital and limited by Guarantee. Printed in England by Prestagate Ltd Reading. Reprotyping by Geoffrey Cooper and Jenny Pennings. OUR ADDRESS: From now on. Undercurrents will have two addresses one in the city, one in the country. Our new city address:Undercurrents., Earth Exchange Building..
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213 Archway,. Road, London N6 5BN. Telephone (01) 340 1898. Letters about News, Reviews or Advertising should from now on be sent to this office. Letters about Features and general editorial matters should be sent to: Undercurrents, 11 Shadwell, Uley, Dursley, Gloucesteshire GL11 5BW. Telephone (0453 86) 636. Subscription orders and enquiries should be addressed to our Uley office. SUBSCRIPTIONS cost ,£2.50 Sterling (US$6.50 or equivalent in other currencies) for six issues, posted by second class surface mail to any country except the United States, Canada and Mexico. Subscriptions to these countries cost US$7.50: copies are sent by Air freight to New York and posted from there by second class mall. Delivery takes 3 to 14 days. Since Airfreight is only economic when as many subscribers as possible use it. we cannot accept surface mail subscriptions to these countries. Our US mailing agents are:Air & Sea Freight Inc 527 Madison Avenue Suite 1217, New York 10022. SECOND CLASS POSTAGE PAID AT NEW YORK, NY USA. COPYRIGHT. The copyright @ of all articles in Undercurrents', belongs to Undercurrents Limited, unless otherwise stated, and they must not be reproduced without our permission. We will normally allow our material to be used for non profit purposes. on condition that Undercurrents is credited. CONTRIBUTIONS. We welcome unsolicited articles, news items, illustrations, photographs etc. from our readers. Though every care is taker with such material. we cannot be responsible (or its loss or damage. and we cannot undertake to return it unless it is accompanied by an appropriate stamped· envelope addressed to the sender. To make life easier for our typesetters. manuscripts for publication must be typed clearly on one side of the page only, with double or triple spacing and at least one inch margin on each side o( the type. OK? CREDITS. Undercurrents is produced by a large number of people. There are only,. two. paid staff. one full time. one part time. The rest of us work for nothing in our spare time. Here. in alphabetical order. an the names of the people most directly concerned in putting the magazine· together: Godfrey Boyle·. Sally Boyle. Duncan Campbell. Peter Cockerton, Pat Coyne. Tony Durham. Richard Elen, Dave Elliott. Joyce Evans, Herbert Girardet. Peter Glass,. Chris Hutton·Squire Martin Ince. Barbara Kern Martyn Partridge. Dave Smith and Peter Sommer. Other people, without whom Undercurrents, would be more or Iess impossible include: Graham Andrews. Gavin Browning. Charlie Clutterbuck. Andrew Curry David Gardiner Nigel Gowland, Ian Hogan, Julie Murray, Eric Wilson, Joy Watt and Woody. And a whole lot of other good people we've forgotten. HELPERS: If you’re interested in helping on undercurrents in any way, write or phone for details of our weekly meetings. COVER: This issue’s cover was designed by Joy Watt and shows a house made from scrap materials constructed recently at the ARARAT Exhibition in Stockholm. DISTRIBUTORS: Omnibus Books Ltd, 53 West Ham Lane E15, Paperchain Ltd., 43 Silver St, Whitwick, Leics. Distribution queries: Chris Hutton-Squire 01-261 6774.

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"Gambling with our Chromosomes" IT WAS 1917 all over again. Walt Lenin Patterson and a coterie of dedicated FOE followers were transported hundreds of miles in a sealed train like a plague bacillus, by agents of • an imperial power to disseminate revolution in the heart of the nuclear kingdom, Windscale in Cumberland.·It was 7.15 on the morning of 24 April, an hour known, to this reporter at least, hitherto only be hearsay I when the train left Euston with 400 or so on board. Five·. hours later, after a journey along one of the most spectacularly beautiful rail routes in Britain, it arrived··ahead of schedule. British Rail, it turned out, were the days most unexpected heroes. If you want to go anywhere in style then hire a train .......·After a momentary delay, to check that the waiting TV camera crews were ready, the procession moved off, headed·by Tom Trotsky Burke. soi·disant·Director of Friends of the Earth and FOE member Colin Hines, clad in a white radiation suit. A few minutes later the crocodile reached the debating ground, a football pitch juSt in front of the perimeter fence of the Windscale complex, to be greeted by some enterpriSing locals selling coffee and not dogs."·The eady arrival gave Walt Patterson a chance to acquaint those unfamiliar to the plant with its·many globe·s, including the plutonium producing reactor,scene of the famous 1957 accident, the reprocessing plat B 204 and·the prototype AG R, the only advanced gas·cooled reactor ever·. to have been·run at full power.·After a musical interlude by saxophonist Lon Cox-hill and poems from Adrian Mitchell (a most effective rendition of Blake's Jerusalem) the action proper was started by Tom·Burke. After the meeting in·Church House earlier this year (when British Nuclear Fuel representatives and FOE had debated the Japanese reprocessing contract in the presence of Tony Benn), FOE had decided to return the complement and take the debate to Windscale. Local people were invited to come along and·to take part in the discusSion. This was not, he said,a demonstration but a rally, although the exact distinction was never made entirely clear.·Geoffrey Dodsworth MP started the debate proper by saying that, while he personally believed in nuclear power, he did not believe that the British people had been given enough evidence_e to-judge. Not enough time had been devoted by Parliament. He praised the much greater·degree·of awareness and participation·in the issues in the USA and pointed out that if it was felt . necessary to prohibit transport of fissionable materials in New York then it may well be necessary
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here.·The safety question was taken up by BNFLs John Donahue, not surprisingly since he is in charge·of safety at Wind scale. I with other industries were as,well regulated as nuclear power" he said, pointing o,out that one in seven people on the Wind scale site worked on safety related aspects. Moreover, if our elected representatives were so concerned with·the issues, why was it that only 5 MPs turned up in the House when the member for the load constituency. John Cunning-ham, spoke on Windscale?·_Could the money spent on nuclear power have been put to better use?_ asked Millie Miller, Labour MP for Ilford N. It was no··good declaiming that we must have nuclear power before the hazards were fully known·look at what happened with asbestos. Value and safety for money were what was needed:\.,·Len Brookes, an economist with the UKAEA based his arguments on a projection of the energy needs necessary to sustain·a modest. 2%, growth of the UK . economy to the end of the century. This would virtually double the demand for energy; the UK would be looking for an extra 300 million tons of coal equivalent every year and only one source could. supply that amount of energy in the time available·nuclear power. Winding up for FOE, Walt • Patterson said that the, first objective of the·meeting was to·show local people that the antinuclear lobby did not all have two heads and cloven hoofs: He went on to deny the charge that FOE had no alternatives to propose.·On the contrary. they were in favour of an integrated approach to energy supply which included conservation. using coal based·. technologies and developing renewable resources.·The last two speakers were both pro·BNFL. Peter Adams. who seems to be the token trade unionist for these occasions (he spoke at Church house), which is not to deprecate him since he is both articulate and persuasive,·and Leo Goldsworthy, a worker·in the plant who in a way was the most impressive speaker of aU since he was spontaneous and obviously sincere: He aLso made the very good point that at Windscale he was at least warned of the dangers and knew that people were taking very stringent precautions. whereas in a previous job. in an asbestos factory, nobody had even told him of the dangers. After that the debate was thrown open to the floor. Points were made, some good, some indifferent and virtually &II of·them hostile to nuclear power.·Most of the speakers concentrated an safety. One nuclear Demosthenes thundered a philippic against the Windscale reactor. They told us it wouldn't blow up, he said. but·it did. Frankly, so cold was the wind by this time, that most of·the participants would have been glad of some heat, nuclear or anything else. Another speaker accused BNFL of
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gambling with our chromosomes·a delightfully metaphorical stick with which to beat the Ned Franklins and Walter Marshalls of this world.·All in aIL FO,E can be well pleased. with the results of their rust foray into direct action on the nuclear issue. The debate·itself never really reached great heights but that was hardly to be expected·. All a rally (or demonstration) can really hope to do is to register presence, to draw attention to the fact that there·are a number of people concerned about the direction of nuclear policy. By that token.the event can be considered a success. FOE received a fair amount of publicity and they took the issue out of the realms of rarified abstraction and brought it to the people, who ultimately will have to decide. One minor caveat·. most of the protesters were l,;chiefly c.:concerned with safety which in many ways·is the issue on which nuclear power is least vulnerable. Certainly its record compares favourably with any comparable industry. as the BNf L spokesmen were quick to point out. FOE need to broaden the issue to include economics, social policy and the whole question of the·_ impact of technology on society. before they can;l hope to turn what-is at the moment a minor protest into a major·movement. 30 firms seek slice of Sun DESPITE Department of EneIgy Think Tank predictions that less duml% ofome·n·swW be met by IOlar devices by tJ:Ie year 2000 (they favour wave power), research arid development outside government agencies are progressing nicely, thank you.·Three years ago seminars on solar energy were devoted to persuading people of the urgency of energy conservation, and discussions were largely about theoretical possibilities. Now the emphasis is on practical ways of harnessing the sun and experts from all sorts of disciplines"are getting involved. In February one such seminar, Solar Energy for Buildings, held at the North East·.... London Polytechnic, included architects, engineers, a metallurgist and solar collector manufacturers among the speakers.· Apart from a plea to extend solar technology to developing countries (the closer you get to the equator, the poorer the people but the richer _the 80m possibilities), philosophical reasons for turning to the sun were hardly mentioned.. Perhaps those who attend such seminars are priNuJrjly concerned with saving the planet but there is a tendency: now that businessmen form part of the·audience, for some speakers to discuss cost effectiveness in todays market conditions and ignore the long term implications of solar energy.·Evidence of business. interest·in solar pOwer
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is the fact that, in 1973 there were only two collector manufacturers in Britain but now there are more than 30. No assessments of performance are·as yet available but the price rapge is vast·anything from £9 to .£100 per square metre, although the cheaper ones generally lack g1a.ing.·The best compromise between highly efficient performance and economical construction of flat plate colle(,..10rs for water heating seems to be copper with copper oxide coating {as a selective surface} for high infra red abs6rbtion and low emission. Provided, of course, that this is...combined with·correctly designed enclosure, insulation and glazing.·Double glazing with good quality window glass (avoid cheap glass because it.has higher iron·. content) gives good results but even better is a single.pane treated to cut down on reflection and . used in conjunction with_a partial··Vdcuum. Depth of air gap matters·when there is a partial vacuum but not otherwise.·A visiting mechanical engineering professor from Oklahoma State University considered that·a British home heated by gas would derive little or 00 cost benefit·from installing solar coJlectors just now·Fuel costs about 25% more here than in the USA but tas is·stiU economic in his view. Possibly he forgets that British incomes·are half those of the US which makes our fuel bills·gas or whatever·seem more crippling. But he was struck by the fact·that we hav_e a fairly uniform climat·e,lacking the drastic temperature extreses of the USA although ad·mittedly not as sunny. It means that economic sizing of solar heating systems here is much like that of more southerly countries because the heating load in Britain is quite uniform over a long heaHng season. It is important to use the energy at as low a temperature as possible in Britain, especiaUy in winter when solar inseilsity is low.·Any home heated electrically should put in solar coUectms·right now, and homes heated by :.>i1would fmd it worthwhile too. A well insulated house with an electrical heating system needs a solar collector area between one fourth and one half the heated floor area. The storage tank, assuming water cooled oolleLtors and water storage, shoukl be from 50 to 75 kilograms per square metre of coUector area.· Other speakers discussed fine points such as differential·temperature controllers and·special applications like solar·heated swimming pools. The·school at Wallasey, heated by the childrens bodies, the lighting .. system and. south facing windows·in a building of massive construction which stores heat, was described in some detail. Also described·was·a low energy open system house, designed by the NELP"Faculty of Art and Design, which makes good use of a conservatory and solar
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panelS.·Formulae needed to assess·cost effectiveness of solar co{1eclors and to work out designs for individual applit:ations, plus a great deal more of practical value, are contained in the published papers of this seminar. They cost £1.50 and "can be obtained from Mrs. G. Letchford, Faculty of Environment Studies, North East London Polytechnic, Forest Road, London E17418. Atom Splits California· NUCLEAR POWER in the USA faces its most critical test yet when the voters of California SO to the pons on June 8th.·Proposition 15 on the ballot form, the so·called California initiative, calls for the nuclear energy industry to prove, within five years, to the satisfaction of the state legislature, that:·The effectiveness of all enA:rgency systems is demonstrated by actual tests. (So far all tests of such systems have been computer simulations.)·The problems of nuclear waste storage and disposal can be solved with no reasonable chance of a significant escape to the·environment. ·Nuclear materials willl;le adequately safeguarded from theft or sabotage.·The initiative further stipulates that within one year the ceiling on compensation in case of a nuclear accident be removed and full compensation assured,·and that a final decision on all matters is to be taken by 2/3 majority in both houses of the legislature. If the criteria are not met then all commercial nuclear plants will have to operate at 60% of their·rated capacity. For every subsequent year that the safety requitements are not met, the plants will have to be derated a further 10%.·. The campaign to enact Proposition 15 is organised by Citizens for Nuclear Safeguards, (eNS) ail umbrella group uniting environmental and citizens group such as the Sierra Club, Friends 0:: the Earth, California Citizens Action Groups. Another Mother for Peace, the California Demo·cratic Council and the Planning and Conservation League. Chairman of CNS is David Peso a San Francisco public interest attorney and prominent opponer ,of nuclear power in the state. . Another anti·nuclear big name, Ralph Nader, is also giving supp, Unsurprisingly the initiative is being vigorously opposed by the nuclear industry. Organising the pro·nuclear vote IS Citizens for Jobs and Energy, an industryfunded PR firm which now calls itself No "On Fifteen.·The vote is expected to be close, although the pro·nuclear forces are outspending CNS on publicity by a factor of about fifteen to one. Ducks Harness Wave WAVEPOWER generators, affectionately known as humped back nodding ducks, are being commercially exploited by Sea EneJBY Associates, a
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subsidiary of Ready Mixed Concrete •·The ducks, developed by Stephen Salter at the University of York, oscillate to produce hydraulic fluid under pressure which is used to drive alternators. These alternators can then·feed a submerged substation through . 11 kV flexible cables. AC received by the substation will be rectified and transmitted to shore by conventionaf cables.·The ducks are made of concrete, and willprobabJ.y have a backbone of steel or concrete sections h,eld together by compression. A recently proposed suggestion of tying sections together with·parafiL synthetic fibre rope under tension woukl provide a solid backbone which und.er high load storm conditions would extend·to absorb the shock. ·So far research has been directed towards producing the best shaped duck fo.r a single frequency. But the main aims now are to study the performance of a heaving rig and to construct·a string of ducks for tests in a·. mixed sea tank.·Efficiencies of about 50% at 1.6 Hz are yielded by the ducks, but their inventor believes that using a smaIL amount of power to control oscillating frequency·. when the wave period is not qui r·ht would increase the average output. Z.E.G. for UK.? ZERO ENERGY GROWTH may have·arrived sooner than most of us had imagined. Provisional ftgures frem the UK Department of Energy show that consumptio in 1975,at 321.6 million tons a!: coal equivalent, was the lowest since 1969 and 3% lower than t!·1974 figure, which was itself artificially depressed by the three·day week. A comparison over the period April·pecember each year indicates that the true fall was nearer 7%. . ,. Oil suffered the biggest fall, hardly surprising after massive price increases; consumption was 10.9% down. Coal use rose by . 4.5% to 121 mllJion tons while natural gas further incr.eased its penetration of the market to 16.9% of the total. BRAD: The End BRAD isfmaJly over. The most famous of AT communes, at Eithin·y·Gaer, has been up for sale since Marcb and at tbe time of going to press, is about to pass into "ew bands. The two remaining couples say that enough will be raised from tbe·sale·described as site value plus basic raw materials plus a·bit more·to payoff all tbe participants, including founder Robin Clarke.·Wit·the sale Gf the·Biotechnic , Research and Developm·t unit·at Churchstoke an era in Alternative Technology ends. BRAD fust made its appearance as an idea in De2, with an article by Robin Clarke. Oarke. editor of IPC"s glossy Science JOU17UJl until it·was absorbed into New Scientist and the author of a number of books, including We All Fall Down
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(on CBW). and The Science of War·and PeI1Ce (on conflict research),·set OUt8 blueprint for a model self·sufficient community based·on an autonomous house. In March 1972 a definite group of people interested in making·the blueprint rcal had evolved and by April1973·they were sending out reports of progress with developing the me. At the titne the community consisted of 8 adults and 3 children. Just over·IS months later, the house had beeo built, the membership had changed, and a report appeared at the years Comtek that Robin Clarke had decided to lea·ve. Talking to Undercurrents, Clarke said his reason for leaving was a clash of ideas, and ideals, between those in the commune, like himself, who thought that the community would be forged by concentrating ,on the selfsufficiency aspect and the others who considered that the problems of communal living should be tackled first. I thought that the goal itself would. bethe social cement. he said. citing the experience of the first year or so,·when everybody was concentrating on building the house and setting up the farm.·Oarke, who now lives at Bishops Castle, Shropshire, the BRAD farm is still enthusiastic about AT, Ive learnt a lot more AT since I got out: but is distinctly less keen on the idea of communalliviilg, I doubt if I will ever liVe in a commune again. Only four people still remain.·John and Maria Oemow who toolt partin the original discussions which set up BRAD and the latest additions, Stephen and (sabel Garford, wbo have been living there full·time since last October.·The reasons·for closing down the commune are severely practical, according"to Stephen Garfoid. Mter Philip Brachi, one of the most prominent participants, decided to leave in early January, the commune was down to only four people, too few to take care of the farms 43 acres adequately. Being an inefficient farm labourer was not my idea of fun.·Advertising for·people willing to join the BRAD experiment brought plenty 9f enquiries but·no Itrrn offers. So it was decided·to wind up. BRAD has _now been sold for £30,000 to an Ashram of four painters and a potter currently living in Kent, a fa(..1 which gives much pleasure to the commune·Despite the inevitable sadness over the f"mallllsult everybody seems·to have learnt a great deal from·the·xpeJ;ience and nobody regrets joining. No flowers please. was Garfords f"mal comment. Number please, your Majesty? THE EXISTENCE of numerous special procedures designed to give government officials and VIPs special facilities in the public phone system has DOW been disclosed.·The Operating Handbopk, the bible of Post
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Office telephone operators, gives fuU details on how to handle Royal, Exercise, Pool, and many other special calls, as well as special procedures like call tracing and checking the numbers of phone users. A copy of the Operating Handbook was sent anonymously to a ,London based magazine recently··Government officials, the army. and royalty all have their own·ecial priority service, which may be used merely by phoning the operator and saying the right·thing.·We·should like a royal call to .. : is all,surprisingly, that is necessary. Royal calls can be·made by members of the British·Royal Househo·. and are·URGENT ... (and) cannot tolerate any delay that might be in force.·Officials of the government, public corporations, and the arQled forces can get the same treatmen(by demanding a Govemment urgent, civil urgent·or service urgent call. Exercise calls, the handbook goes on to·say, are made by members of the Home Office and the Armed Services sometimes in co·operation with the local Police Force.···presumably with the intention of setting up a police/ military communications system during exercises. Part of the public long·distance network, it is revealed, are separated asa Trunk poor which can be taken over at whim by Government Departments·and selected subsl.:!"ibers. [runk pool lines and the trunk subscribers together are believed to {orm the core onhe Post Offices top·secret Defem ..·e Network Emergency Manual Switching System. If even the simple procedures for disconnecting unimportant telephones in case of war are not sufficient, then carefully selected operators will retreat to fallout protected emergency switchboards underground, in the basement of large telephone exchanges.·MischievQus subscribers could, it appears, wreak havoc by using the Prolonged Uninterrupted Telephone call system. If anyone claiming to be a government department asks an operator for·a PUT call, the call is set up indefinitely·operators are not allowed to monitor or disconnect the call once set up. Only supervisors are allowed to diJrconnect "and if asked by"both callers. Or perhaps, after the call has pas·its first birthday! World·Plan for AT APPROPRIATE TECHNOLOGY is, or lIbould be, about to hit the international headline8·It features in one of the items to be discussed at·take a deep breath·the Tnpartite Wodd ConfeleDCe on Employment, Income Distribution and Social Prosress and the International Division of Labour, entitled Employment, Growth and Basic Needs·A one·world problem The item on the conferences agenda of spedal interest 10 AT fans is Item 3: Technologies for productive emplqyment creation in developing
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countries. The International labour Offices report to be presented for discussion at the conference sees, The real issue (in the choice of labour·or capital·intensive technologies) is the decision about the pattern of growth to be persued. If a basic·needs strategy (aimed at meeting a certain specific standard of living for·veryone by AD 2000) is adopted, this will require, overall, a more balanced combination of·a labour·or employment·. intensive growth path with the adopt·on, as approptiate, of capital intensive technologies in certain sectors of the economy. The report recommends that·the conference sets up both a consultative group on appropriate "technology, to determine research priorites in AT, and an International Appropriate Technology Unit.·The Unit would have three tasks; "first, to identify areas in which technological innovation can have·a significant impact;·nd, to·achieve concentrated, co·ordinated research and development in these areas; third, to remove the barriers to widespread dissemination·f the,results of research"·The promotion of technologies appropriate for the needs of the urban and rural poor would be·the main objective of the Unit. Areas it Iriight cover could include food processing; solar power and other small scale sowces of power; simple modes of transport; the development of equipment for lifting and moving water, brickmaking and other building materials.·What happens to the reports suggestion will depend on the deliberations of the many delega·tions attending the world employ··ment conference from 4·17 June in Geneva at ILO headquarters. Copies of the report and further information can be obtained·from the ILO Branch OtTice,·87/91 New Bond Street, London Wl Y 9LA; price £3.20. Socialism In One Environment? DESPITE a gloriously sunny day, the recent South East London Socialist Environment and Resources Association (SERA) ronference on 'AUemotives to the Dole Queue ... SociaUy use·ful work' was packed to overflowing. Thoughts nevertheless strayed to thc virtues of sunpower and oth ... ambient sources as sources not only of energy, but also of jobs. II was pointed out that exploitation of sunpower technology would produce far more jobs than, say, the equivalent spending nn nuclear power, and at much lower risk (See VCfS). "Ernie Scarbrow of the Lucas Aerospace Combine Shop Stewards Committee outlined the Lucas workers corporate Plan and commented on the recent rejection of the Plan by management (detailed elsewhere in eddies),' pointing out that nothing had. chanaed in reality·the plan was still as relevant now as it was before, perhaps more so ud that the Combine would certainly not give up at this stage.
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John Davis of ITDG echoed Dave Elliott's plea for a crash programme of energy conservation and alternative technology development, and po(nted out that jobs could also be Cleated in the raw·materials and waste recycling fields, if, that is, enterprises were set up on a small scale, dealing with local outputs. He abo argued for much more attention to be given to repair and renovation activities. Many copsumer 'durablt:$' (wa'm.ing machines, TV sets, and of course, cars) were currentl)' designed on 'throwaway' principles. RUI repair and renovation were inevitably_labour intensive activities that oould..be cArried out in smaU local workshops at a great saving in terms of raw materials, thus substituting labour for raw matertals. Richard Fletcher of the . London Co·()perative Political Committee outJined the history and. potential of the co:·Qperative movement and the conference discussed various specific short term projects·including paper recycling to food oo·cperatin:s and domestic insulating·as well as longer term'political programme 'It was clear that none of th_e short term 10b creation' projects could really hope to 'solve' the problems of unemp)oyment. which was linlced to much widel structural causes. There would have to be much more funda·mental political and economic manges before we could hope to avoid the contradictions that abounded in the present sys(em. 'Can you imagine CAPITALIST resource and environment a!lsociation1' asked one speaker. Well the problem is that we live in one. Straight Cranks OPEN DAY at the Patent OtrlCe' wall th,f seneral impre .. ioJa lelt by the conference on 'Appropriate TechnolOJ)" ror the UK,' held in NewcutJe at the end ot March, Mth planl tor wind power ships, jost1inl with winch plough, lOW coDecton, oyster and mussel farmina, wind generators and ever on. The papers were aU very respectable and academic·with the exception perhaps of an ill·oonceivCd and unsubstantiated torch·balla.d on the virtues of nuclear power by Prof G. R. Bainbridge of Newcastle University, who didn't altend, but who was suitably admonished in ab·nti4. Although some of the study groups were worthwhile, 'notably the energy group (see panel) ,and some of the theoretical papers were worth reading·for example the one by Dr Pritichard from the Sockt}'. Religion and Ta:hnology Project·overall there was little to Jearn from the·main sessions., except that when engineers get turned on to alternative technology they can throw up some remarkable ideas. Richard Fletcher's hybrid road·rail vehicle·which is being taken up by th·Lucas Aerospace Combine·was probably the most striking idea. His video tape' of this rubber·wheeled vehicle transferring fiom road to rail and vice versa, nilOd many eyebrows in an audience which contained a variety of somewhat staKi transport planners. Overall this was a
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gathering of conservationist·and environmen·talist·minded planners aDd engineers from industry government and academia. \\obat many of them seemed to want were new technologies that met their environmen"tal criteria but did .. so with the minimum disturban·e to existing patterns of social organi·sation. Maybe that is misjudging them but somehow one remains to be convinced thai everyone . ptesent subscribed to Schumacher’s word play, that what was needed. " wa.'more cranks'·since these were 'small, simple non·violent and caused revolutions'. Further than that, it was not clear that if radically different ideas were developed by the socially responsible engineers alluded to by Prof Thring, they would necessarily be aCcepted. by the organisalions for which the engineer·worked. The freedom engineers enjoy is nowadays highly circumscribed; ultimately they face the sack., or loss of prol;lJ.odon if they' step outside the range of ideas sanctioned by tbeir employers. Attempting to clingas individuals to some &Ort of professional ethic isoot. given this sHuatien, sufficient·what is needed is some more collective means of ..... forcing through radical ideas againn vested interests. Which is why at.lean some people at the conference were sympathetic to the trade union initiatives of the sort pioneerdl by the Lucas Aerospace engineers. LUCAS Managers Stick To Guns AT LONG LAST Lucas ACII"OIpace manAlement have replied to the 9KJp Stewards Altername Corpor·ate Plan·which proposed a ndical diYenirtcation of the product u.1IJt!. away Crom milituyi and civilian aircraft systems to more socially useful products we 12). The managemeotl response has 'been to insiat that Lucal stick.with the '1:nditioaaI' line of business. Many people expected that the company would try to co·opt the workerS plans by trying to " shafe some of the good publicity that it had created, which incJUd a laudatory article in the strii.a:bt·laced but influential mag21jne The Engineer, or perhaps by selectively taking up the profita! proposals and ignoring the reit .. But Chey have m01en to ignoce both these options and stick with aerospace, which they say is both of social utility and profitable. The first signs of this bard linl' opposition came in April when management effectively sabota: the planned meeting with the stewards, arguing that the medi diVision and the defence systems :, group could not be represented" because the)' were not really part of Lucas AefOspace. The steward felt this wu an attempt to Iplit their ranks, and the "meeting was " cancened. This hardline approadl seems bound to lead to oonfroritl' tion·not teast becall·nf fhra! of redundancy at one site,
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coupled with Joseph Luca,' recent 'rights' (sharc) iuue seemingly aimed at overseas expamjon. In its press statement LlJCa.5 says it will continue to explore relevant alternatives within its product range and it welcomes 'consultaliYe meetiop' at local level to dlscu$s such ideas. " Whether the workforce will be " content with this step remains to be seen. Leaving It Alone BOTANICAL confusion seems to have beset our legal masten. Two cases earlier this year appear to have established thaI posaession of the leaves of the cannabis plant is not an offence. In the first, Regina. v Dume, the deCtnclanl was .qed with the poaellion of 22m. of cannabis IoIf ... the grouDds that this came witJain the definition of cannabis In the _ of Drop Act, 1971 : ne nowerin. m: fruitins top. of any plaid of the FOUl CaAaabis'. Thb was dWlenged Ie. the delence by Dr Aane IlDblnaon or the Dq>utmCRt of Forenoi< Mcdidae 01 Loadon Hospital ModicaJ cOo .... The judge dec:Iined to rule on the queition as .t. matter 01 law and the jury acquitted the defendant on the evidence. In the second case, which. came up a week later. the charge wa"s in two parts; possession of cannabis and of cailOabis resin. both based on the same bust, twenty five ounces of leaf. Under cro·s·examination the Crown's expert admitted that he didn't believe that, 'flowering or fruiting tops', .included leaves, and 10 the judge ditel..""ted the jury to acquit on the firs. count. On the second, the Crown claimed 'ha,'heleaf reu within tbe definition of cannabis rosin·'the scPa.ratedreUn. whetber crude or purified. obtained from any plant of the genus Cannabis', Professor J. W. Fairbarn of the Department of Phannacogno London University School of Pharmacy. gave evidence for the defence that the leaves could not be brought within this definition and the jury .acquitted, &ftl!f. a 2* hour deliberation.. Neither of these two cases !leUIes the_general point conclu·si\'ely s1'nce both were jury decisions based upon particular circumSla·However. it does seem that the authorities arc already b"ecoming more circumspect in bringing charges. IN a recent bus\ in Exmouth !be seized substance, descnbedlu 6vegetable matter in rilver paper'. was analysed at BriSiol Forensic Laboratory and the analyst·reported Chat the' sample 'contained a few cannabis leaves but the presence of Misuse of DrugsAct rmtcrial could not be established. Christopher F.aland, a legal counsellor for RelNse, commenting on the legal disarray of the anti·pot brigade., thinks that a few more of these e an ideal peg on which to hang a decriminalisation campaign.·'
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Tbere is a further legal ploy feft to the authorities. In a cue . due to be heard in NoCtingham the defendant has been charged with posses.'don of a '{iass A' drug. Normally cannabis, along. with amphetamines i·in Cla.s.'i 8;. Cbss A includes heroin, LSD. CU1d a cannabis deriV"d.tive. canma·biqol. The prosecution are !laying thaI while the leaves a.re not cannabis, within the meaning. of the Act. they nevertheless contain cannabinol. and are therefore Class. A drugs. However Ealand is reasonably hopefuJ that the defendant will be able to use the 'mushroom' defence. On 13th April this'year at Reading Crown Court, Judge Blomeflekt directed the jury to find two accused, Garland and Wi1kimlOn, nol guilty of ptl!lSessing the drug p,silocin. said to be oonLained in some·mushroomli they had acquired. 'It mOlY or may not be,' said the judge, 'that one can get psllocin out of mushrooms but psilocin is it chemical and mustuoomsare nut.' Il is still an orrent:e to 'cultivate any plant uf the genus cannabis' but leaf l4lken from plants growiI\[l wild is legal. However if the police take the view that the leaf may be evidence of cultivation, they are entitied to seiu It but not to keep it. last year for the rllsllime total seizu·es of grass exceeded those of resin. So there will be plenty of opportunities for the new defence to be tested. Each Ulse wiD have·to be carefuIJy prepared: with expert botanical evidence and argued on its merits. Full details of these two cases., the legal background to them and their implications are given in a Release pamphlet, LNlvrs But Nor of GNu, 40p po$t free from Re{etJw. Publications, I Elgin Avenue, London W9. Alternative·Erin·Awakes WHAT HAS been c:a1Ied 'lbe ront major ptheriDll of dtematlve people in Ireland,' took pbce in GIeaaee lnCo WIctIow __ Dublln,OIl 23rd April. About 500 people came from aU over the country by foot, by cat, by cart and by bus to stay together in the mountains and tate part in a festil'aJ of alternative living. The basic idea of the whole event W"dS to discuss and demonstrate as many aspects of alternative Jiving as If.;>ssible, 1luoughout the weekend people sat around together diiCussi·and demonstrating·eYer)1hing from health a.nd. A.T. to prl;nal therapy and education. WlndihUls were erected and although a,distinct lack of wind caused most to remain motionless there were r'umoUls of great machbtes driving oommilh and generdtors in remote pariS of the country. After yoga and meditation for !tOme and .. general exchange of . early morning yawns among the rest. everyone got down to serious and important matters.
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Workshops got under way, films, among them the New Alchemists in AmeriO:l and "The·Other Way' a film on alternative economics starring Dt. Scbl11n:8chCl were shown and everywhere small groups of people could be.seen, all discussing something or some better way of doing it. These things carried on,' interspersed with announcement! of more films and discussions, . 'until early morning when people began to drift off in search of sleeping bags and some sleep., ... Most people seemed to·inlereslcd in prdctical·t1ers and gettmg Ihingsdone. That is. not. to say thatid·1s and. pOlOSibilities were Left out but many seemed much more intent on getting down and doing something .. Alternative living in Ireland is alive and welL I::nn before Sunday arternoon wh.en everyone went home, plans had been laid·for another major·athering in lJublin in ... fortnight's time. Thetime for dreaming hall paS1ed. .There is work to be done. Red Ban FURTHER USE of FD & (' Red No.2·the most wideJy used fond oolourin& in the USA·rn.s been banned by the US Food and Drug Commissioner. Only two months before an expert advisory ClJmmilt·. revieWing the resulu of a test on 500 mis, had reported that it had no _·parenl Oldver·etTcct on the rats. But the experiment was. 50 badly handled·Control groups were inadvertently mixed and very few of the rJ.U thai died were examined·that further analyses of the data were requested. A statbtic·lI analysis, not normal practice in eV'aluations, .concluded that there had been a significant increal't in mali·nant tumours. Hence Ihe ban. The Food and l.)ru!l. Administralion now h·s anolhl.:r worry: would alliheir previous··safl.:" e ...... lualions stand up·u lI1atistiCOlI,malysis·! Summer Festivals TIJERE are quite a few festivals coming up this summer, which will give fresh air freaks ample opportunity to while away their days in the sun. The first of these is the mUch talked·ahout Peoples HabiJot, which will take place from May 29th to June 6th at the Surrey Docks in Rotherhithe. down here in the Smoke. Billed a$ a Festival of Allernali·e living. it will bean all·cmbracing adventure into what the alternative society could be, given a chance. The action starts with a talk·in about planning, human environ·ments and. the desirability ot Jetting people work out their oommuntties for themselves. The week·lo·timetable of events includes communes,
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education, wban farming, alternative technology. ahernative medicine, health foods and aU sorts of other goodies too numerous to mention. Apart from aU the talk there will be films 300 a few practical work.mops. too. such·as a project to rehabilitate broken·down old houses, Iand.·dearing parties with a view to setting up allotments, and such arcana <is bicycle repair shops and windmill·building projects. Apart from all the hardworking nitty·gritty there will also be music, theatre and similar hedonistic activities. And somewhere to pitch your tent for canYd$ enthusiasts. Breathless from Rotherhithe you can rush·up to Liverpool for Summer In The City, which wiD . take Merseysidfi by storm from June 12th to 19th.les reaUy a sort of grand allLtnce of events taking place at Community places·ll over the Beat City (surely you remember the Beat Ciff ..• 1) so youd best contact Open Projects at 39/41 Manestys Lane, Liverpool I (051·708 7174 )for explicit, up·to·date deuils.Sumce to say tbeyv&got poetry, Win·stanley, "et more AT; vidoo, inflatables, ,the inimitable . Professor Clump. stleet theatre jugglers and much, much more, They alsO say that theres plent of sCope to lend a hand if you happen to be in the neighbourb And ••. much to Unden;un delight, Son of Comtek rides a in dear old Bath, this time from August 14th to 21st. Its a bit soon to go on about whats in store since these anarcholibertarian happenings have an altogether last·minute spontaneil about them which it would·be a pity to wipe out with dull things like organisation. But the gene idea is that its going to be a bit bigger than la81 year·with more space being allocated to staUs I ride·shows and plaCes for perf 01 ances. All the usual attractions be there .. fr6e boat·trips, sound camping etc, so just make a not, in your diary and watch this space for further details. Whats On ... If you wish to tearn CHEESE·MAKING, try a one·day course inSelf·Sufficiency Dairying\·Dairy Products in the Town or Country Kitchen. or even Oairy Products for the Fumers Wife, The course fee is £5 which includes meals, so for further details write to Vicki Hartley, Quainton Dairy Ltd, Pitchcott Hill Farm, Oving, Aylesbury, Bucks. COMMON OWNERSHIP ASSOCIATION will have its inaugural meeting at Friends House, Euston Road, London NWl. For more infonnation write to Ernest·Bader, Convenor, Wolhston Ball, Wellingborough, Northants. The KIDS KARNlV AL .to FREE FAIR at Sussex Univcnity, Falmer, B·hton.
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Will take place on Saturday June 12 from noon tm six. The emphasis this year will be on entertainment . for the children but there will also be Street Theatre, craft demonstrations. puppets, ponies and Enviro·exhibits plus AT. Everyone welcome. SURVIVAL is the title of an event organised by the FOE and the COIliervation Society, Surrey/Hants Border Group. It will take place on Saturday. June 12 from 2.3Opm·midnight at Camberley Civic HaLL, Surrey. Admission is £1 . (students 7Sp) or SOp, for the afternoon. There will be craft and cookery demonstrations, various speakers, and a film and folk concert in the evening. The FOE stan wiD have a small AT display. Details from Mrs M, Chapman, Laureston Cottage, Crawley Ridge, Camberley, Surrey. Camber)ey 2l903. Accommodation can be provided at SOp per night in Camberley. TRENTISHOE EARTH FAYREwill take off on June.9. for five days at Combe Martin.. More information from P.A.Smith, Kingston Oub, Combe Martin, N.Devon. Windmills. domes, UFOs, bands. and little green men! MYSTICISM AND TIlE EXPRESSIVE ARTS is a series of lecture/discussion evenings at the lCA. Carlton Terrace. The 6th lecture in the series is entitled Transcendental Meditation and Creativity, which will take place on June 9 at .7 p.m. Beshara and the Unity of Existence will be on June l at 7.00, and on June 23 there will be a discussion involving all the lectures in the context of aei in Jeneral. Further information from Linda Lloyd Jones. Tel 01·839 S3«. Midsummer Common, Cambridge is the scene for the third STRAWB·ERRY FAIR, which will take place on Saturday JWle 12. There win be music, stalls, sports and theatre plus AT contributions from FOE and survival groups. For more details contact Cambridge Mayday Group, 2B·Bateman Street, Cambridg·e. or, better still, go to the fair. WIND ENERGY SYSTEMS il the title of a symposiwn to be held from September 7 to 9 at St. Johns College, Cambmge. It is organised by BHRA Fluid Engineering, and authors from twelve countries wiD describe practical and theoretical Ichemes for harnessing wind energy. Wind turbinel., propellor·type roton, conveptional windmilli. and even tornado·type wind generato,rs will aU be covered. For details, write to BHRA. Cranfield. Bodford, MK43 OAJ. A BIOLOGICAL APPROACH TO SOIL HUSBANDRY is the subject of the.sixth one·week course organised. by the Soil Association, and it is to be held at Ewell Te<:hnical College from J uJy·12·16. Lecturers will include
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Lady Eve Balfour,·Dr E.F .Schumaclter, Dr, A. Deavin and·Mrs. Dinah Williams. T1iere wiU.alsoobe visits to an organic farm or an organic market guden. Further details available from Dr, A. Deavin,·Ewell Technical College, Reigate Road, tw,·Surrey. COMMUNITY ACTION IN EUROPE w. a symposium organised by the land use planning working group of the International·; Youth Federation for Environmental Studi·and Conservation, and it wiD take place at t S.F.V. Centre, SoUentunaholm, Sweden, frl August 15·21, 1976, The seminar will func··as an international meeting platform wheJC community groups from different countries exchange experiences and organisational techniques. which were previously only dis·cussed at a local leveL For details contact, .. Xaver MonbaiUiu, c/o PAYSA, Land uie Cc·suUants, 30 Rue Sadi Carnat, 92 V ANVES, Paris, France. It will cost about £30 for full board and lodging, and the working language:. will be English. Regular UC readers in the Cambridge lµe3., invited to have a drink at 89 ST Philips Rd, .: Cambridge on Friday June 11th at 8.00 pm. Purpose: Meet, discuss, swap ideasjscenesjp (if any)·possibly for beief What, on reaturl for UC. Contact Rob ?·.. ton. Cambridge 42, or above address. Toil·a photographic .tudv of manual labour about tha farm is an exhibition runnin@ at the Museum of English Rur<!l Life al the University of Reading until the end of June. An extremely atmospheric and evocative study of the conditions of agricultural life from the nineteenth century until the aftermath of the second.world war, it will be of much interest to social historians and a chastening experience to anyone who. thinks they were days of pastoral bliss.

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Letters not corrected
UNDERCURRENTS IS SEXIST . . I would like to comment on an issue which J think very important, namel) se)(lIm in literature and espedally in the·altern.ti·e press such as Undercurrents. In the article How To Grow More V·etlJb/es it wouldnt have taken much effort to change the masculine pronouns used Ihtouih·out (man. his, etc.) 10 the Deulna expressions: ptople, their. etc. What a difference co attitudes these minor alterations would makel·In the article Lets HlJI1e Some .Mou RadiOl2cthllry. how puron···bing the SCntence "Finany let" look at manpower (sorry. personpower)" sounds_ Surely this is what we expect from II daily or sunday rag not from. supposedly aware alternative paper.·Every skelchjl1Jasramj cartoon which contatns leoPk (except one on P.12 an the cover) depicts only men; the gmt Boes for eYef"y photo but two. A M Brunt 50 Riverview Grove London W4 . . IGNORANT . . By my calendar Ash Wednesday was on March 3 this year, not April 14 (see IIs Nudear War in Undercurrents 14). It is goofs such as this which tend to give a paper su·ch as yours a poor reputation particularly amongst the older generation. I can just hear my father snorting at such ignorance! Vicki Coleman Sotrawater Papa Stour Shetland . . AND IMPRACTICAL The gardening article in Undercurrents 15 leaves me uninspired .. As usual, a lot about relatina: arid co:.operating in harmony with the sun and moon, and nol much about actually how to do it. Couldnt the maguine be more practical, not just lelling us where 10 send our $5.00?·Maybe the artick simply records work in progress hut in thai case shouldnl it be rather more critical? Experimenlal develop·ment means identifyina: and OVfl"·comina the ,hortcomiJlliis of a ,ystem. We hear nothlAg about this. Ronald Turnbull 7& Bramfjdd Road·London SWll Undercurrents is published by a group that is largely male and /atheist and It shows. Regarding the reference to personpower we agree that it is patronising and apologise. Undercurrents if. no more·than a mirror to the subjective·group to which its readers belong, what we grandly call the
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Movement; it can only reflect what is there. Sadly sexism still rules O.K.even in radical circles. We would be·very pleased to receive contrIbutions that would redress the·male bias of the magazine·. This is something that it if much easier to complain about than to correct.·As to the goof about Ash Wednesday), mea culpa. Let me say in reply that I would be delighted if this slip was the most serious error of fact or logic to be found in the magazine.·We accept the criticisms of the Jeavons article but would remind readers that Undercurrents does not pretend to be a gardening magazine and that practical artIcles are much harder to come by than theoretical ones. We would be pleased to hear from anyone who ha tried the Bio·dynamic/French Intensive·method in this country. Chris Hutton·Squire HOT . . About heat in haystacks: certJinlY they do get very hot; 100 C is not. 100 much to expe·t. In the old days they used to cut holes in them fb stop them catching fire spontaneously,·Working at the·top of a .. bed filled with bales of hay on a cool day I was dripping sweat after·a few seconds. The atmospMre was tropical or more in its heat and humidity. It seemed to me suitable for growing uoti·planu, particularly melons and 10matoal tbough a gta" roof on such a shed would be a good way of settinl the hay on fire;·However. this wa, typicalagn·business hay: baled al the first pos.sible moment, and brou,hl in wltile the bales·re sodden with rain, aboul 201bs. overweiahl. A,ainlll this must be set: the besl way of making hay (on tripods) ,enerates least heal; well·made hay. where the stack is not over·heating through damp, needs the heat it has to cook the hay. Taking away this heat by a heat pump,·for instance •• would sDoil the hay. How about an artide on the politics of the countryside: about farmers, agribwineSll and the Forestry Commission, depopula. tion. the decline of thtt goat. enclosures and the Hlahland Clearances, and why no·ne joins the N.V.A.A.W., and tied cottaaed Ronald TUlnbull 78 Bramfield Road London SWtl Yes indeed. Just the .Jorr of thllll a bunch of urban media·freD" like the Undercurrents collectlYe should be able to knock·off In an afrernoon! . . AND COLD WATER You had me worried until ( realised you must be having a joke at the expense of your sadly miseducated correspondents·R. Brown and Frank Adey (UndercUiunu 15).·The point about the haystack, of course, is that the small . amount .of heat.lenerated cant let out, so the t·mperature rises.
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Hay is a good thermal insulator, especially when its seteral feet thick! Any attempt to extract heat would merely cool down the haystack.·Mr. Adeys fan is clearly caused to revoln by the draupl under the lfoor from the han. When he opens the outside door &he draulhalakes the path of leut felueance and ceases to turn the ran_ Ir expansion of the air in the kitchen were the source of enerlY, the roCaCion woukl stop when the air reached a steady temperature, when che preuure would equalile with that outside. Furthermore, the force which is capable of turning a dynamo of any practical Ibe.·Sony, Adey and Brown.·Incidentally. donl bother trying to Invent perpetual motion machines either: its all beeII tried before I Nicholas Pye·Slllith·130A Hampton Road Rdland·Bristol HOW TO DISTil IT I am a:armed for Mr Walker·I UnderClJrnnu 14) and would like to s.ave him hom a horrible dealh by methyl alcohol polson·ing. a dreadrullhing, usually starting with blindneu. I saw·an awful lot of it in Ceylon where they make awrul. illici.l and infected brews caUed Kautppu.·[f he will use a reiiabk brewers··or, bener still, wlne·maker, yeast, and if he ""ill make sure by general cleanliness and heat sterilisation before fermentation that Qtheryusts and fungi are exclud·d. he should aet no methyl alcohol at ail.·The secret of the rest lies in careful remperature control. For this there is no substitute for·a glas still and a reliable thermO. meter with its bulb suspended In Ihe vapour above the liquid under dislillation, and not in the liquid ilself.·Melhyl alcohol boils al 66°C.·The j·mperall..ire is raised a little above this; \f Ihere is any. which·is doubtful, there will be ,·effervescence as it boils off; the·. temperature is held study until this finishes. Throw the distillate·away. It is lethal. 0·Ethyl alcohol bolls al 78 C.·Raise Ihe tem·erature to a Iitfle above this and hold it steady until the effervescence ceases indicating thai the ethyl alcohol has all distilled over; dont be tempted·to hurry it by using higher temperatures. Carefully doone this procedure will, at one passage, produce a brew strona enough 10 astonish Mr Walkers pharynx, DG Amoll The Holt Chorler Wood H_.WC35SQ FIBREGlASS IS BAD FOR. YOU I was. very impressed by your insulalion versus nuclear reactors theme (Undrrcuwenn 14). HOW",ff. I noticed Ihat you,in common wilh the manufacturen. D.O.E. and othen, faino show fibrealas& instaUers wearina pro·tective face·masts. t. and people helping me, have placed fib·glass and not worn any mask other than handkerchiefs (which are useless) bul since
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reading an article in Emdronment (Sept. (974) J have been more cautious. The authors (Montague &:·Montague) observe that airborne·fibreglass particles share many chanclera·tics with those of asbeslos. If the carcinogenic effects of asbestos particles are ude 10 their $hape and si:r.e (I.e. not to chemical causes), they sugnt that fibrealau may have·a similar effect. They oole Ihat Ihere is a delay or 10·50 years between uposure 10 asbestos and Ihe appearance of cancer, and·thai Ihe widelpread we of fibreglass is relatively recenl. They con·c1ude by recommendins that fibreglass be banned except rot esaential applications. Roof insulation is certainly not·an essential appli·ation as there are alternative materials.·Personally,l continue to use and tecommend fibreglass, where alternatives are not practical; but·l strongly recommend anyone who handles it to wear a dust mask (Of the cheap type of aluminium frame al;ld ,cotton pad such as farmers (should) wear aga.inst mouldy hay or san,ders against dust etc.). Overalls, rubber gloves and a hat are for comfo(t, but a mask is for health. Chr; Day Ty.;cwrdd S.ch IQntfun Abert:wau Drfod NOT MUCH POWER FROM THIS PEDAL Was Frank Thompson (Undercun·e"D 14) seriouslY sUlgesUng that his ner·iser will prg,duce useful amounts of enerU for home consumption, bearing in mind the complexity and cost of douae battery, additional lowvoltaie wirln., invetter, elc.?·Pedallinl hard on the exerciser for a full hour (perish Ihe Ihought), the rider will expend about 100 watt·hours of energy. The conversion efficiency of the device is certainly no more Ihan 40 per cent. and allowing for the charae/dischar.e energy erficiency of the battery (70 per cent, say) and losses in the series resistor it·is doubtful whether as much as·25 watt·hours would be reclaimable from the battery.·It is not clear to me how such·a low value of series resistor would have the desired effect of Iimitinathe char&ing current 10·8 ampere!. In.any case the·redstar cause, undesirable energy losses. The publiJhed OUlpul curve of the alterdator IUUests that the desired effect could be obtained by redllCtnllhe oYenlllJear ratio to lay 11: I and drivlnl the alter·nalor at a lower speed. This·would also reduce me·hanical losses.·Without wlshinl to beunkind Ihis device smacb to me of the gimmiCkry characteristic of much that is wrillen about appropriate lechnolon. A potentially useful appli·ation of a reject car alternator and its volta,e regulator is to drive it by a waler wheel or simple turbine. We haw: looked at Ihis in Papua New Guinea. It is not generally realised that such an alternator willsel(·excile and operate quite succeufully without an
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associated storale battery. It also has the Inherent protective feature that the voltaae collapses on overload. However 1. to obtain the rated output 01 500 walls or 50 it is necel$8ry to drive the alternator al more than 2000 rpm, which virtually rules out the use of a simple waler wheel (20rpm or kss). The "ery low erticiency of th·system may nol be 100 importanl, althoulh a prime mover d"elopinl 2 h.p. (1.5 kilowatts) of Ihereabouts is needed 10 generate 500 watts electrical oulpul. Abo the low voltage of Ihe D.C. oulput (12 or 24 volts) means that the lenfl"ator must be very close 10 the load and thai only low voltage D.C. appliances, which are difficult to obtain and replace, Can be used unless the added c:omplexilY and expense of an inverter is incurred. In view of the overall co,ts and·abour input for a sChem,e plus the need for rabuSlne. and low mainlenance COlU U may be better to buy a small (ommercial single phase alternalor. J L Woodward University of Technology·Box 793·t.>.·,Papua New Guinea FUEL COST OF INSULATION Thank you for your analysis of the dubious e·onomi·s or Britains SGHWR reactor prOlramme when compared 10 a modest home insulallon procramme (Unde,.. current.t 1 $). However, one Important question immedialely comes to mind, that is what are the fuel costs of an insulation proeramme compared to·those involved In the SGHWR? Dunc:ao Laxen·45 Snowhill Lane Scorlon·Preston·Lan·a The bell ducu,uio,. of this problem LJ i,. Fuels ParlidiH by Pe"r Chtlpm.,. {Pefl8uin}. 9

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. . Can We Ever Trust The Nuclear Technicians?
One of the major tactics of the advocates of nuclear power is to preiend that all issues are technical, capable of being discussed only by the initiated, and amenable to technical solutions. Here a physicist with twenty years experience of the industry shows that the important issues are not scientific but ethiul and social·in other words, questions of human fallibility and stupidity. IN THE RECENT coverage of the issue of Japanese nuclear fuel being reprocessed at Windscale the argument has tended to be about whether the process for sealing radioactive waste in glass could be made to work soon enough or at all, and above all safely, whatever that might mean. What hasnt been discussed is who is going to be doing this job and whether they are really up to it . Let me make it clear that Ive come to the conclusion that nobody in the business, whether at BNFL or anywhere else, including the States, is really up to it. It would be easy enough to say that this is a professional opinion but what" I think is much more important is that any ordinary person would come to the same conclusion by looking at the history·of Wlndscale. ·The 1957 accident·There have been two major accidents at Windscale (and eight minor ones) which deserve detailed explanation. I ts easy enough to see th rough the technical jargon and discover some really dumb·W/ndoc.l •• nd Col mistakes. The first accident is the famous one that happened in 1957 when the No.1 pile caught fire and 80000 curies of radioactive material came out of the top of one of the bulbous chimneys and blew over the countryside. The No.1 pile consisted of a large block of graphite with hundreds of holes in it. In these holes were placed rods of natural uranium, the, kind of uranium that can sustain a nuclear chain reaction with fast neutrons. The chain reaction gives off heat and this heats up the graphite. Now it just so happens thargraphite which i1 kept hot and bombarded by neutrons for a period of time and is then heated, has the unfortunate property of releasing additional heat·ihe so·called Wigner release. The idea was to avoid the graphite doing a Wigner release at random by deliberately getting the graphite hot in order to trigger the Wigner release. It was easy enough to get a section of the pile hot by pulling out the control rods a little but this had to be done carefully. Whai went wrong was that the physicist operating the pile applied nuclear heat twice
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because, after reading the temperature measuring instruments which were wrongly placed for measuring Wigner release, he thought that the first application hadnt triggered the Wigner release. How could he have managed to make this mistake? It may seem unbelievable but he had no·operating manual, no special instruct·ons on carrying out the Wigner release and what he had been told was not detailed enough. In other words, he didnt really know how to do the job! As if all this werent bad enough, the engineers and physicists (called together in a panic to cope with the emergency) didnt have a plan of action prepared to deal with the accident and somehow managed to forget to start sampling the local milk until nearly a million gallons had been contamin"ated. Quite aside from the lessons that could be learned from the 1957 accident itself, an American sWdy, published in 1964, of thirteen accidents including the Windscaie accident drew attention t·the importance··.r Works, Cumbria.·of adequate operating instructions and adequate instnuments. Yet the 1973 accident was almoSt a direct duplicate of the 1957 accident!·The 1973 accident·, In 1973 the processing of a new batch of used uraniuin fuel was being started up when some of the solvent being u·in the process staried to fill a vessel, as Intended, and carne into contact with some metallic residue in the bottom of the vessel. The residue was radioactive and there was enough of it to.gerhot from its own nidioactive decay. When the solvent hit the hot radioactive residue there was a violent reactioAI giving off heat, and Ularge volumes of·ses". In fact the heat was so great that the·\ reaction·led "possibly to ignition of the . zirconium" according to the official report. Zirconium is a metal. You might think that the designers of the plant would have checked whether any residue produced in the plant could react with the chemicals ordinarily used·i, it but such tests were not made unti after the accident!·All this was going on inside a heavily shielded chamber and at first glance 0 might think that the ftre would have d no more than fill the chamber with smoke, but rio such luck, or rather no such foresight. Believe it or not there·a way the smoke could get ou t into the workspace! There were holes, called penetrations, deliberately built into shielding. The designers of the plant relied on a son of vacuum cleaner syst always to be sucking air from the work space through these penetrations into processing chamber so that in principle none of the smoke would have got out against the inward flow of air. But the inward flow was chosen in a rather va way, as the government report said, an was not powerful enough to cope with the
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violent puff of smoke. When the smoke blew out through of the penetrations it took with it so of the radioactive dust, mainly ruttle This material is a lot more radioactive·an even radium, in fact more than thirty thousand times as much, so it only a little to give every one of the 35 workers in the ten·storey building more than the allowable dose of radia in the twenty minutes it took to get out, during every minute of which th were all breathing it in. One worker absorbed the dose for one hundred y in less than twenty minutes. You might ask "why didnt they get the workers out sooner?" Believe it or not it was because they had no evacuation plans for this sort of incident. There evacuation plans for other kinds of incident but not for this kind of incident. As if these failures of ordinary imagination and foresight within the BNFL management werent bad enough the report of the Chief Nuclear Inspector tries to excuse this lack of imagination and foresight by saying that they had evacuation plans for this kind of incid because they hadnt h;>d an incident of. this kind before. Thats like saying we havent had a fire drill because we have had ,fire yet! The attiwde of the safety managemeri at Windscale to this incident was that ire was la nuisancel and that the exact flow path along which the ruthenium dust escaped was an linteresting example of the Coanda effect·a flow phenomeno regardedby the safety management as "new but widely known some ten years before the incident. They had to be prompted to comment on the lack of emergency procedures which is arguabl·the most important issue rai,sed by the accident. . Why did it lake so long to get the mOl out? Because: . • The radioactivity alarms had been go off when they shouldnt have and ! hi condition had been allowed to persis for so long that no one took them seriously_ • The instruments that measured the It of radioactivity didnt immediately t how high it was and had to be reset manua!ly to give a proper indication • The man who had to read the instruments and reset them was not available on the floor where the first alarm went off and had to be found. • The man who read the instruments didnt get to them right away; he was delayed by someone who wanted to have his hands checked for contamination and he didnt have the authority to evaFuate the building, but had to get in touch with someone who did.
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• There was no loudspeaker system which .could have been used to tell people to get out and people had to run up and down ten flights of stairs to shout to the workers to get out. And for an encore when they all got out and two men went back in wearing protective clothing and respirators, they found two other men who hadnt heard Ihe shouted warning. The safely people The reprocessing plant at Wlndscal. for the recovery of plutonium. .·didnt even know immediately who was in the building and who wasnt.·The facl that they didnt even have any plans prepared in advance for shutting·. down the plant was marginally less worrying, but what is worrying is the attitude of the Windscale safety management two years after the event; they regard the 57 and 73 incidents as very·different. . Are they really? Both were fires··In both the instruments were inadequate, in spite of the warnings of·the 1964 study. .·In both the operating instructions were inadequate, again in spite of the warnings of the 1964 study.·I n both the emergency plans were·.inadequate. "··Engineers, not only the ones at Wind·:.·. scale but elsewhere too, who are the very people we rely on to do engineering safely, dont seem to be able to do it; they make dumb mistakes and dont learn·from their past mistakes. .··_ .Unless the public begin to look over the shoulders of engineers in a very critical and informed way befQ[e the event, I fear that we are going to have some really nasty accidents, which will make the WindscaJe 1957 and 1973 accidents look like Sunday school picnics. Charles Wakstein

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Fraser De·School
Kirkdale is a free school in Sydenham, South London. Romy Fraser has been teaching there for three years and her daughter Tamsin is a pupil. In this article she describes the daily life of the school and the.philosophy behind it. I HAVE SPENT the last three years working at Kirkdale. At first I was the lreading teacher, then I graduated to assistant and now for the last year Ive been working with the oldest group of kids.·The most·important feature of the school ,is the strong personal relationship built up between the kids and staff. We keep the ratio of eighl kids to one teacher, although thrs may seem a very low ratio compared to other schools it is just about the maximum if each child is to be educated as an individual and at their own level.·Eleven·years ago Joh .... and Susie Paulesland founded the school with four pupils primarily to provide an education for their own children. As friends started to send their children and to contribute to the running costs it gradually grew.·. Alterations were made to the old·Victorian house to provide adequate te·hing space and the children were divided into three groups: the Bees·(3)1,·5 years); the Wasps (5·7 or8 years); and the Hornets (8·11 years). The maximum number of kids attending the school was sel at fifty. John and Susie handed over the running of the school to the staff, the parents and the children. Kirkdale has continued in this way with the school organised by committees and meetings: As a member of staff and·a parent I feel that this creates the opportunity to keep the school alive and changing althoughil means greater personal r",ponsibility and a lot of time and work. Once a week the school has a meeting before lunch where the children raise any problems or comptaints and they are freely disc·ssed. They can make, unmake or change rules. Mostly this system works well and the children develop selfdiscipline. c·As the kids work·at their own level and follow their own interests a 101 of preparation and work is needed to_ keep them continually interested and developing. Obviously there are problems and often it is necessary to spend extra time on reading, maths, writing, etc .. and generally the·kids accept this. Some days·we do cooking which is dlways popular and once a week we go swimming to the local b(i.ths."One afternoon a week is set aside for science projects. We also have singing sessions, music lessons and drama. We keep Fridays free for outings to museums or to the country. The kids can choose their own
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activities and spend a lot 01 time in the garden. They build tree houses and hideouts and ",ok aner the bantams and·row ve·etables. Generally·.·there is a relaxed atmosphere where the kids are free to develop themselves on all·levels. . Kirkdale could not work without the active help of the parents. Most of them contribute to the running and maintenance of the school in one way or another. 56 there is no sharp division between home and school and the parents can share their childrens school lives. We are always short of money and we rely on a variety of fund·raising activities like dances, fetes, jumble sales and so on as well as the fees from parents.·Every summer term the kids spend·a week or so in the country camping and for me this is the highlight of the schoolyear with the staff and kids living together, sharing problems and having·a good time. It is hard work but good fun. Romy Fraser There will be 0 number of places available at Kirkdale in the autumn. For more informotion obout the school pleose·write to: The Stoff, Kir.·dole School,. 186.Kirkdale, Sydenhom, London SE26·or phone 01·778 0149.·11

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Elliott Working on All Fronts
"The important thing is to work on all fronts at once, the home, the neighbourhood and the workplace. Such a balance is the essence of utopian strategy. Likewise we must be realistic and full of fantasy, attend to public needs and individual consciousness, create a balance of mental and manual work for everyone, a measure of city and country life, focus on immediate problems and build for the future, live in earnest and just for fun, confront and compromise. Have our cake and eat it? Why not?" Peter Harper Radical Technology (Wildwood House 1976) PETER HARPER's plea for a creative fusion of the 'reality' and ‘pleasure' principles was the lift off point for the recent two·day gathering of about 70 environmentalists, radical activists and alternative technologists brought together by NATT A, the Network for Alternative Technology and Technology Assessment, at Cranfield Institute of Technology in Bedfordshire. . One of the central issues raised at NA TT A was: Can such an undifferentiated, broad and sweeping collection of projects and activities really lead to radical social change? Or, given limited resources·are some more productive than others? Radical Technology means Radical Politics The central issue raised at NA TT A was whether it was possible·, or strategically desirable·to develop alter"native technology in advance of the social change process that would be necessary to sustain a genuinely alternative society.ln his contribution on .. Alternative Technology as a social change agent", Godfrey Boyle argued that "the implementation of 'A r is a necessary, but not sufficient, condition for bringing about radical social change ... " and that "AT can be an agent of radical change if it is implemented:as part of a strategy for the creation of a society that is basically socialist ... " This was not accepted by everyone and there were doubts as to whether AT, . as Boyle put it, "could well be the most powerful" lever "in the tool kit of those who would push society in a radical direction." Certainly something like AT would need to be implemenied in the 'utopian' society that we were ali, in aU,r different ways, striving for, but at present it might only have marginal implications. It could easily be co·opted to serve, reassert and legitim ise, !;he goals of the stattis quo. Or it could simply be used to provide an escape for fortunate minorities . . But many others felt that this bleak view did not take account of the need to generate alternatives os port of the process of cultural, social and technical change, in order to ensure that what emerges ‘after the revolution' is indeed socially and environmentally appropriate. Support for this latter proposition comes from leon Trotsky (not present at NA TT A, but
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no doubt sympathetic to its' aims: "Since the end must already be operative in the means. employed, the liberation of the workers can only be by their own work, and it is in the very process of achieving it that they must develop those qualities wh ich will sustain a socialist society," Peter Harper put this in more familiar terms in Undercurrents 6: “premature' attempts to create alternative social, economic and technical organisation for production can contribute in a significant way to the achievement of political conditions that will finally allow them to be fully implemented." But the central question is: what is the main likely agent of social change? The industrial front Many people at NATTA shared the traditional marxist view that at the end of the day it is the working class who will bring about change, in response to their experience of the contradictions and . failures of the·apitalist "form of organ: . isation. The recurrent crises.' the irrationality of production for profit, the iniquities of exploitation and inequalities of wealth and power would continually force people at the point of production to organise against the status quo. But th_e curr¢:nt purely eccrnom ic conflicts in which much of the labour movement was engaged had to be transcended if the status quo were to be successfully·challenged. And this is where techno·logical issues came ill. Raising the question of technology opened up a wide area of potential confrontation; both at the material and ideological I Shop floor campaigns over productio line speed, manning levels, health and safety and job design combined conc for econom i<: welfare with wider issu technical choice and control. Such iss could be linked to external·to·the·pla issues, such as pollution and the natu and destination of the product. Faced with a system that was unable, or unwilling, to provide decent, safe and socially usefu I jobs, it is not surprisin that groups of workers·like those a Lucas Aerospace·have initially as·a matter of self·interest, challenged t who present this situation as inevita Workers co·ops Other groups of workers have, in fa<:e of plant dosures, tried to set up·• wo·kers cd·operatives. But they still the same unyielding market forces w for<:ed the original capital ist owners dose the firm, and are often for<:ed·t exploit themselves in order to surviva practice there ar·few opportunities experiment with new modes of work or alternative products. Rob Paton a Martin Lockett outlined the plight of F akenham enterprises, still struggling survival from month to month, after·herok o<:cupation and work·in by W(l leather workers several years ago. So the only examples of workers co·ops. being set up in favourable economk <: ditions (in capitalist terms) are those firms which have been bequeathed by pl\i1anthropic owners (such as Scott·. Bader) and, quite apart from the resid paternalism often prevalent in
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such organisations, the nature of their mar usually constrains any experimentati , they survive onlY if they feed whatever bit of the market has been left to them by the monopolist firms.·All in all it seems that although co·operaHve experiments ate to be welco in terms of their educative valueJ for th. moment) constrained as. they are by th unchanged capitalist environment whic forces co·operatives to compete with straight capitalist concerns, and even·wi each other) they will remain marginal the central struggle·industrial <:onfrontations o(;(;urring in conventional firms. Lucas and BSSRS The Lucas campaign·forcefully outlined at NATTA by two of the shop stewards on the Lucas Aerospace Combine Committee, Mike Cooley and Ernie Scarbrow·illustrates that one w ahead is to seek to convert by collective struggle existing high technology firms produdng socially needed alternatives. course some of the products that would·emerge from this type of struggle would j be very different from that traditionally I assodated with the labelalternative .·technology. They would be technologlej suited to the needs of communities as they are now. But the fact that their : production had been fought for DY the workforce with community needs in mind would help generate confident and combative organisations·a major tactical gain. This process would also be nurtured by the work of another group represented at the conference, the British Society for Social Responsibility in Science (aSSRS). BSS RS are attempting to provide . technical aid and advice on health and safety matters to workers. They also seek to expose the political and economic role of the various technologies generated by capitalist society, hoping thereby to lay bare some of the ideOlogical underpinnings of the status quo. Social Audit Valuable practical contributions are also being made by Social Aud it, also represented at NAn A, who try to pro·vide workers and community groups with information on a particular firms·social performance in terms of working con·d,itions, health and safety, pollution and, product quality. But as Social Audit are aware. publ ishing information on a particular company is unlikely to lead to any fundamental changes in company structure. operations or policy··This can" only come through colleclive political action by those with the power to confront the firms. Which is why Social Audit are keen to pass on theiLaccumulated skills to grass roots community and industrial groups in the form of a do·ity·urself manual. Green Bans
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Back in the everyday world of trade unionism, NAn A heard encouraging news concerning the Green Ban Action Group set up in Birmingham, in the wake of Jack Muodeys catalytic visit (see UC14). The group has joined with environmentalists and community groups to oppose the scheduled replacemerit of the Victorian Post Office by a multistorey office block. The campaign had received fennal support from the regional office of the·construction union, UCAT, the Transport and General Workers Union and Birmingham Trades Council. This type of campaign·at once both indu·stry based and lcommunity oriented·shows one viable way to link industrial and community issues. Community technology Not everyone c.an get involved in shop floor office or building site campaigns. !t w.as natural that NA TT A would pay consideratJle attention to groups operating in the community technology contexl. But what exactly does this mean? It was certainly clear at NATTA that there was little sympathy remaining for those who wanted only to play with AT in rural retreats, or for entrepreneurs who were content just to make a profit by sell ing AT kits. These approaches could only be justified·even then only conditionallyif they acted as a sort of public demonstration of what was feasii;)le, socially and lechnicaUy·and whether .selling . expensive AT kits was ever likely to meet this criterion was unclear. But what was clear that what was appropriate to a small hill farm or commune was not likely to be very relevant to the ordinary city dweller. AT ideas, both social and technical, would onlygain acceptance if they made sense and appealed to ordinary people and related io existing com·munities needs. The emphasis should be on technologies generated by and for the community and on schemes that try to operate within1but at the same time expand, peoples consciousness. Of course, inherent in this approach was the danger of simply providing privale technical fixes that in no way challenged or transcended the existing order; and there were the perennial problems of funding and of the relation between client communities and the experts. But overall the consensus at NAnA seemed to be that absolutist and purist political or technolOgical ideals were not·.always practical or productive. Calculated reliance on suitably accountable expertsj and exploitation of, but not total dependence on; state cash handouts to fund Community or industrial projects, job creation programmes or whateverall these be countenanced, without risk of instant cc>·option. To refuse all such aid·as corrupting was to become dangerously isolated from reality. Compromise, in some circumstances, was not so much·a necessary evil, as J. valuable
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political tool, in that it forced the group involved to come to terms with the power structure not by collaboration by developing politically powerful defences·against co·option. .· The central criterion should be: to what extent does the project or campaign help shift the balance of power? It might be appropriate to·operate at quite low levels, on practical projects related to immediate community needs, such as·. domestic insulation or allotments, or group·oriented col1sciou·ness Changing projects such as food·ps, self·help·skill sharing, and soQn. More radical ideas·and power to implement them could grow from this base. The National Centre for Alternative Technology (NCAT) in Wales, and the Centre for Alternatives in Urban Development (CAUD) based at SWindon, seemed to be prepared to accept, albeit grudgingly, their reliance on external sources of funding that are less than·virgin·a position which earned them criticism from some. But others felt that innocen·e is no virtue if you are trying to gel involved with real world·changing·. projects·its what you do that matters: how well do you avoid co+option and use of the windfalls from welfare capitalism? On these grounds both NCAT and CAUD might well ,be challenged: Charlie Clutterbuck from BSSRS scornfully labelled NCAT as the Ideal Dome Exhibition. The oroblems bequeathed by city pianners can somedmes create valuable opportunities for aI ternative developments, as was clear from some of the developments at Milton Keynes, outlined by Alan Thomas. The petrol price rises since 1973 have demolished the main principle of the new citys design philosophy·that factories, shops and housing estate units would be separated by expanses of open country and. linked by urban motorway·. Instead, each housi:lg estate t}ow has to be more sclf·sufficicnt. A food co·operative of thirty. families already exists (see ue 15). Given this situation, some of Milton Keynes Development Corporations paternalistic provisions·such as com·munity workshops and the dial·a·bus scheme·could well come into their own., As Alan Thomas reported, there are already a number of self·help schemes such as the TUGBOAT furniture exchange, storage and transport scheme; and the Alternative Co·opetative Enter·prises group,.which is opening a com·munity whole·food shop and book shop. As readers of In The Making will know, projects like this are springing up all over the counlry. It is conceivable that they could develop along the lines of the eOMTEK group at Bath and attempt. to provide a whole range of community services·self·building, alternative energy technology, waste
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recycling, engineering workshops) repair facilities for cycles, med·;a and so on. Worker power not nuclear power Another major issue at N A TT A was the desirability or otherw1se of single issue environmental campaigns, of the sort currently being mounted by Friends of the Earth in opposition to the nuclear power programme. FOEs strategy over the years has been to generate wellresearched documents aimed at confronting governmental or industrial decision makers and winning support from the media and the public. But on an expert·for·expert basis) the power structure usually wins, since it has immo/1se resources. FOE does not have to rely totally on its intellectual fire power however: it has many foot soldiers in its branches throughout the country,.all busily engaged in local projects: But the prime motivation for most FOE members is saving the planet from eco<atastrophe, as opposed to the more political. goals of most of t.he other groups at NATTA: The ostensible aim of FOEs campaign is to stop the nuclear power programme at all costs. This particular objective received the approval oUnost people at NA IT A. But it was not tell to justify the adoption of any available means. There is the danger. for example, that a major stop·it protest campaign of the CND variety could risk confrontation with the present and potential workers at the nuclear sites·not to mention the wider community I to whom nuclear power has been sold as a way of guaranteeing jobs and prosperity. FOEs justification for running this risk seems to be that irreversible decisions about·nuclear power will shortly be taken; other options fo(society will be pre·empted and, becauscof the need for·curitYJ future decisions will be even less accessible to the public.·Nuclear power is certainly a key technology underpinning the advanced infra·structure of the technocratic society·so important that it requires the creation of an armed corps to protect it. In wt.lich case, the argument runs, theres no time·to "go through the unions" and build up wide·scale grass roots oppoSition. The decision to go ahead must be challenged by lobbying, protest and if necessary direct actio·, even if this involves only·a minority and alienates the unions involved. More subtly, FOE have arsued that "no publicity is bad publicity" and that confrontations, even with unions, can be productive, raising the issue in the press and more specifically forcing unions to take up some position rather than treat it as a non·issue. But groups to the left of FOE tend to argue that il would be better, albeit regretfully, to accept a few more nuclear power stations and concentrate on
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build·ing up a more critical response through the labour movement: The Socialist Environment and Resources As·iation (SERAX also represented at NA ITA, aims to raise environmental quesoons of the sort that concern FOE, but to do so from within the labour movement, at both parliamentary and local levels. SERA has built up·contacts and support in local labour parties, trades councils and unions, and tries to relate its arguments directly to the problems and exp·riences of working people. And although the Undercurrents group has not one party line, it is safe to say that, as indicated by ue 15, the general view is that although the nuclear battle. can usefully be fought on environmental and safety grounds, it is equally vital to demonstrate that the nuclear programme represents a bad use of financial material and skill resources·especially in terms of the meagre number of jobs likely to be produced by the nuclear programme, compared with other possible options. By campaigning. on this job creation issue)considerable headway could con·ceivably be made with the unions, most·. of whom at present support the nuclea·programme. .·FOE are, in fact, fully in support of this type of campaign·indeed FOE are the major instigators of job·creating insula·tion schemes. But they say that this will take time, a..n·the nuclear issue wont·wait .... \·Essentially its a matter of tactical·Undercurre judgement and only time will tell wh··" course is correct. But the twin dangc are that the FOE campaign could lea either to head··on confrontations·wi full media coverago.·between work defending their jobs and wild proteS hippy environmentalists (or alternati perhaps, nice sensitive conservation is being abused by greedy workers, . depending on. the medias current pro. paganda needs); or else could simply·. fizzle out and bec:ome a marginal and·; insignificant protest on the level of the Save·The·Whale campaign, suitable for ail inside column on a quiet news day.) things have turned out, this latter fate seems to have befallen FOEs Apri124: manifestations. Industry·community links All in all, NATTA indicated that thej has been a move away from the adven urist protests and confrontation t1ct·the sixties, and also a shift away from arid theoretical abstractions of the N Left. Instead, radical technologists of various kinds were becoming directly involved with shop floor and cammu struggles, where ideology and practice could intetact.·There was also a growing awareness that the industrial and community Cal texts are not independent. If further . progress is to be made, the struggles i these two areas have to be brought together. Indeed, they can usefully reinforce each other and make divisivi tactics by the state or employers (appealing to the
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public interest, . "holding the country to ransom, etc) untenable. Similarly, the false trade·o so often presented by employers, be jobs on the one hand and environ·mental quality/protection on the 0 < or between jobs and continued arms·production·can be transcended. Thli workforce and their families are not something apart from the community,·nationally or locally. Producers are a1sc cOnsumers. There already exists, in the shape of national network of Trades Councils,·a political body wh ich potentially coul provide many of the necessary organisationallinks between those working i private industry; those using its produc or services; the social) educational and welfare·rvices; local commun ity grou and tenants associations; local authorities, the TUe and the Labour Government.·NA IT A was not meant to create a ... organisation, although a communicatic network will no doubt emerge in the form of a list of peoples interests and skills which could be drawn on by any group requiring technical help. But NA ITA did demonstrate that there existed a rough consensus, encampassi a wide variety of political persuasions; groups, around the·radical technology concept. Just what would ultimately emerge to fill the box labelled Radical Technology was still not entirely clear but at least a start had been made. Dave Elliott

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Hutton·Squire The Ley That Never Was
"It is a capital mistake, my dear Watson, to theorise upon Inadequate data.” YES INDEED. Trouble Is, ley hunters have been doing just that for so long now that it has become the norm. Few of them have any scientific training and so they have lillie or no conception of how a science is based on the painstaking accumulation of empirical evidence against which new theories can be tested. Watkins himself did have some idea of·what was needed; and he did attempt to provide it (The Old Straight Track, Garnstone edition,pp. 203·4). Un·fortunately, at least one of the claims he makes there is false, and I think it important that leyhunters should realise this, unpalatable though it may be.·The false claim is this: that the five churches of Tid combe, Linkenholt, Faccombe, Burghclere and Sydmonton, situated in Wiltshire and Hampshire,·. "align precisely" (p. 123 ibid.) constituting a 5·point ley. The odds against·a map containing this alignment occurring by chance are about 200 to 1 (see 1 , below). So it would be good, very good evidence for the ley hypothesis if it were ,true. But it isn't, as anyone can see by inspection. What we have are two distinct . ;..three point leys:·, Tidcombe·Linkenholt·Burghclere; and Tidcombe·Linkenholt·Sydmanton "both of which miss Faccombe church by·at least lmm on the map (i.e. about 70 yards on the ground). Nor can we, this time, dodge the issue in the usual way by·. saying HNo one knows how wide·a ley is." Watkins explicitly compares this ley with the results of a test of the hypothesis that leys are simply the result of chance. These results, as one would·expect, follow the Poisson distribution. . Fa from them it is possible to infer that Watkins took the width of a ley to be only 0_0074 miles (i.e. 13 yards) (see 2 below). On a one·inch map this is only 7 thousandths of an inch or 0.2mm (see 3 below). So he was using a ,harp pencil.·What are we to make of this? One millimetre may not sound very much, but increasing the ley width to 70 yards makes a startling difference to the statistics. The odds against a map containing a 5·point ley are cut from 200 to 1 to about evens (see 4 below). But·this is by the way. If Watkins had been using a lmm line, he would have got 128 three·point alignments instead of 33, and 10 four·point alignments of only one .. So we must accept that Watkins was in fact using a sharp pencil. So why
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did he claim a bogus ley? There are three .·, possible reasons: (a) The map was faulty. Possible but unlikely. I haven't been able to check it (sheet 283 of the 'C' (18 in. by 12 in) edition). However to get Faccombe church on to the ley the Ordnance Survey would have to put it on the wrong (South (South) side of the road through the village. Ill believe that when I see it. (b) He made a mistake. Possible but very unlikely. This alignment is described·(p .. 123 of Old Straight Track) as "convenient to verify". It runs horizontally across the map and is only 12 miles long. So it can indeed be verified easily with·a foot·rule. (c) He fudged the evidence. Possible but unlikely. I t has been known though, in other fields, for protagonists of a new theory (which they know. to be true) to, fabricate evidence to try to silence the sceptics. There are statistical grounds for thinking he fudged it. His random test yielded 34 Ieys in all (33 three·pointers and one four·pointer) while the Andover map, he claims, has 38. What is odd is that of tho those 38 eight were four·pointers and only 29 were three·point leys, 5 less than chance would predict. If some of the three·point leys were the result of deliberate alignment one would expect the total to exceed the chance score not vice versa. If on the other hand Watkins fudged some of the genuine (but random) three·pointers into four·pointers, without at the same time fudging some two·pointers into three·pointers, one would get the observed shortfall of three-pointers. Whatever the reason may be, my own view is that the fact that this ley is bogus throws doubt on all the other leys Watkins claims to have found_ Remember it was not just mentioned in passing but as part of a refutation of the view that leys are just a statistical phenomenon. Chris Hutton Squire …………………….. STOP PRESS! I have just been sent a copy of sheet 283 of the C edition by another leyhunter, Robert Forrest. The church at Faccombe Is displaced to the south on the map by 0.5 mm so that it forms a three·point ley with Tidcombe and Linkenholt. However, this three·point ley still runs 2mm north of Burghclere and Sydmonton, equivalent to 140 yards on the ground. So the map is indeed faulty, but not faulty enough to explain the “ley that never was".

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Statistical Appendix 1. Poisson Fit to Watkins random test Points/line 2 3 4 5 Lines (actual) 1204 33 1 0 Lines (fitted) 1203 34 0.5 0.005

Calculated value of the Poisson parameter is k = 0.0283. Odds against a given map having a five·pointer by chance are 1 : 0.005, i.e. 200:1 2. Deduction of ‘Jey·width’ from the Poisson fit. We know: k = nxy/A; therefore x = kA/ny. . Definitions: n = no. of sites (51) x:: ley·width (to be found in this case) y =average ley·Iength (16 miles in this case) A= area of the map (216 sq. miles) So we can say: x = 0.263k miles = 0.0074 miles = 13 yards. 3. The scale of a 1 in map is 1 : 63,360; so 13 yards equals 13.36/63360 in on a 1 in map. i.e. 7 thou. or 0.2mm. 4. Expected number of leys if x = 70 yards and k = 0.15. Points/line 2 3 4 5 Lines 2 965 3 128 4 10 5 0.5 Lines 1168 29 8 1 (calculated) (claimed by Watkins)

Odds against a given map having a five·pointer by chance are ‘evens’.

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Disney Steady Reddy!
IN Undercurrents 14, A.K.N. Reddy·3lJlued that the polarisation of Indian society stems from the countrys·incorrect clIolce of Western technology at an early stage in the,post.lndependMce pro·gramme of industrialisation. He suggests that if India were to switch to more .approp(.i··e technologies, then such·, social problems would be, if not eliminated, at least substantially alleviated. Outsiders may think It Ironic that an independence movement wh Ich nurtured the idea of ,mall·scale indu,try idealised by Gandhi sl]ould have resulted in the technological imbalance·described by Reddy. Indeed, these Gandhian ideal, are ,till upheld in India·for instance by the Khadi and Village Industries Com·. mission In Bombay. Given thi, familiarity with ,mall·scale technology, I think we mut dig deeper to find the root, of Indials present social crisis and locate them in the politic.al and economic ,phere,father than that of technology. The financial aspects In Table 1 of the Undercurrents article, it is apparent that it Is cheaper to build 5000 bio·gas plants in place of one modern plant. The capital co,t of 5000 bio·ga, plant i, e,timated at R.J070 million (around £60 million) and con·trasted with the cost of a single coal·using plant of R 1200 million (around £70 million). But coal·u,ing technology i, by far the most expensive method of producing synthetic ammonia; a naphtha·" using plant might co,t half as much. The reason for the (unu,ual) choice of coalusing plants in India recently was a desire by the government to avoid the impact of oil price rises on naphtha costs, and to utilise coal deposits in eastern India. It would nevertheless be pos,ible to make a case against the decision to build coalu,ing plant, on purely (Wetern) technical . grounds and to prefer the more economic . oil·using technique. This would, of course, reduce the cost of the modern alternative in Reddy, comparison, In addition, strictly speaking, the nitrogen fertiliser product of the modern process is ammonia, which could be u",d directly a, a liquid fertili",,·Reddy includes conversion to urea, which adds around R250 million to the cost. Finally, current plans to build bio·gas plantS would require 7% of Indias scarce steel production. Assume that the scarcity leads to an equivalent 7% rise in the price of steel as a result of the increased demand, and that steel comprise, roughly one third of the con·muction cost of bio·gas plant" Then the true costlor the 5000 bio·gas plant would be over
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R 11 00 million, compared tOJ on my estimates, costs for a conventional plant of between R 1200 million R1200·250 .. and only ( 2 ) or R475 millIon, which Is ,ignificantly less_ True, the b io·p plants would save on for.illn·····excl1ange, but since.chemical fertiliser would still probably be imported anyway, given the dependence in some areas on fertiliser·using crop varieties, this advantage might not,be ,ignificant. In additionJ effective operation of biagas plants would require ,ignificantly more water than the conventional planton my calculation" at least 20% more and water is a scarce commodity in much of India. The employment figures could also be questioned, partly because it is the nature of bio·gas technology that no single employment figure can be estimated·it could as well be 50,000 or 250,000 as the 130,750 quoted by Reddy·and partly because the employment figure for a coal·using plant could be . increased by use of labour·u,ing processes, for example iri coal feeding and pulverising, and bagging and fini,hing. Whether thi, would be de,irable, however, is a moot point. . In my view, Reddy, economic case for bio..gas plants is·unconvincing as it stands. Although I would expeCt more detailed • figures to ,how that bio·gas plants are more·onomic, in the sense of a greater excess of returns over costs, than modem plants, the necessary figures are not given in Reddys calculations. We would need to know the cost of manure in relation to its alternatives uses, as·against the cheapest cost of coalJ oil,·or whatever material is used for the western technolo·y. We would need ,to know whether the Indian government can borrow money mOfe cheaply to build a single coal·u,ing plant, than 5000 villages to find R41 ,000 for each bio·gas plant·a not incohsider,·. able sum. We should requ ire a comparison of all the technological possibilities, including the substitution of a variety of constructron materials and inputs. The social aspects Reddy as",rt, that the Indian int·lIectuaJ elite has little concern for rural problems and is not interested in designing suitable technologies for diffusion throughout the cQuntry,ide. I am in no position to judge whether i, true, although I su·t it is very Iik However, in the ca.seofbio..gas fertili . I have already suggested that the de,i have been available for some time thr ,uch institutions as the Khadi and Vii Industries Commission. I ndeed over 8 sUch plant, are already in operation, a there are government plan, to build , 50,000 more. Experts and some finan assitance are already provided. I am doubtful, however, as to whether the ex isting plant have transformed rural Indian ,ociety in a progressive directici Official, of the Commis,ion have adm ined to me that very few of the plants have been
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sold to village cooperatives: it seem, that the vast maj are operated by rich farmers who do require the manure for other purp have an adequate number of cow, and sufficient water, and are .3:ble to affar the (relatively) high initial capital cost. I was told that several c·operatives W had ,tar ted to u,e these pJants had stopped because no·one was willing to giYe up time from his own cultivation operate them! These assertions are of course ,purel subjective, and I would notdeny that such plants could be u,ed communall (,ubject to the availability of inputs as water) and that it would be desira to do so. What I would deny i, that technology of this sort, or even eX,per prepared to operate in rural areas, wo significantly reduce inequality. And I would go further. The I ndianex.mple illutrates the fact that ,mall·scalete logy may have po,itively lurrmful effe epecially on ,ocial equality. Such te technology may create a rural elite (or·. rather, maintain a rural elite) as a sub·; stitute for, or an addition tOJ the prese metropolitan elite in the absence of 0 more fundamental political and econ changes. The Chinese experience In a recent article in the Pekln{l Review (No. 32, Augut8th, 1975), the Chinese have emphasised thatsocial co·cperatlon precedes the development of inequality·reducIng technologies. Such technologies will no work satisfactorily until farmers have experienced the benefit, of communal production and projects and are thus to design and operate such equipment. The Chine,e have in fact emphasi,ed a balanced approach to technology, wi de,ign, ranging from large modern ammonia·urea plant, through to locall designed ,mall·scale coal·u,in·production. In ma.ny cases, local technologie, are precisely the cheaper and c version, of exi,ting technology of whi , Reddy i, 0 critical, but through "lear ing by doing" the Chine,e have been a to redesign them to utilise local materi and simple labour technique,. Whole, rejection of all Western technology i, unnecessary; and indigenous.techniqu·are best developed at the practical lev , not solely by expert. however ,ociall committed they may be. Richard Disney

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Elen Citizens Band·Why is it Banned?
In the United States, you dont need to comply with stringent official·requirements if you want to communicate with your friends by radio. Almost anyone there can qualify for a licence to transmit on the·Citizens Band. Richard Elen explains how the system works and urges a campaign IN THE UK at present, there are basically two ways in which you can operate radio communications equipment legAlly. You can either apply for an amateur radio transmitting licence, which can allow you to talk to other radio·hams world·wide on. the short wave (HF) band; OT, if you can show the Home Office that you need a radiotelephone system in coonettio" with your business or profession, you can be granted a licence to. use Post Office approved equipment on specific VHF and UHF wavebands. In the former case, you will have to take a moderately difficult technical examination and possibly a morsecode proficiency test; and in the latter you will probably have to buy or··rent fairly expensive equipment from a Post Office approved manufacturer and are nonnally restricted to short range·(line of sight) communication.·. Business and professional·communications A large number of organisations in Britain make use of two·way radio. A radiotelephone system enables taxi firms and l"!1aintenanc.e companies to be informed about potential jo·s without having to make a long and time·. consuming journey back to the office. Three speCific bands are allocated for this purpose by the Home Office (Into whkh the former Minister of Posts and Telecommunications has been absorbed). They are: LowBand VHF (77·87MHz); High Band VHF (around 170MHz); and UHF (4S0470MHz). Equiprnen\oois required to be Home Office approved. On purchasing a system, the communications equipment manufacturer will organise the application for a licence. The Home . Office will then organise the·allocation of a specific channel so as to cause the least possible interference with other users. The manufacturer will then fit·the appropriate channel crystals into the base and mobile units, arid will Instal the equipment in the users vehicles and·office. Often, to give greater coverage, the base station unit will be installed at a geographically favourable site (VHF and UHF communications are restricted virtually to line·of·siiht range) which is shared··ith·other Uiers on diffe·en:t channels, and owned by the manu·facturer. The users office is fitted with a control unit linked to
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the·site by Post Office landlines (high quality telephone lines). Setting up such an installation may take some months. Users are required to know the basic Radio Telephony pro·cedures, and operators who misuse their gear may have their licence revoked. Maintenance is almost always carried out by the equipment manufacturer. Amateur Radio In the early days of radio, the majority of transm isslons were in the Low to Medium Frequency bands (Long and Medium waves). and amateur experimenters wen: aflowed to use the higher , frequency Short·wave .ands, which initially were considered useless for long range communication. The amateurs very quickly diSCOVered that communication was possible over Vilst distances, even round the world, using very low power. Then, as the short wave (HF, VHF and UHF) bands became. crowded with broadcast stations, these "amateurs; were allocated a number of specific HF bands, inc1udin·Top Band (1.8·2.0MHz); 80 Metres 13.S.Ji.OMHz); 40 Metres . (7.0·7.1 MHz); 20 Metres (14() ·14·3SMHz); .tS Metres (21.0·21.4SMHz); 10 Metres (; and several others at higher (VHF and UHF) frequencies, including the VHF 2·metre band (144.14SMHz). Such users are expected to nlaintain their own gear, and often construct it themselves as well. For this reason, the Home Office requires that they take a technical examination, so that the licensing authority can be sure they will not cause interference to other radio. users or to local TV receivers. The US Citizens Band The US Citizens Band was established in the late 50s when the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) allocated 23·prime channels to be used for two·, way radio communic"ation between private parties. The new channel, came to .be known as the Citizens Band, and are situated at aboul 27M Hz. The uses of CB are limited only by the users imagination. A building contractor can shuffle his equipment and cut down time cost by using CB to co·ord inate operations. The IlOCal wholefood co·op can organise van deliveries and call in with orders for far·flung retailers. Private citizens can contribute to emergency services and provide valuable additional communications links. Doctors, dentists·and psychiatrrsi. can receive urgent messages quickly. If you are a fanner, you can communicate with your co·workers scattered o·er your land_ CB is even used at speedways as racing drivers communicate with .their pit crews. Long distance truckers can keep in touch with their headquarters and can talk amongst themselves, collecting important news of traffic problems, and just
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relieving the dangerous boredom of freeway trucking. CB certainly isnt the only type of twoway communications that these people could have, but it is certainly the most convenient and economical to license, purchase, and use. On July 24, 1970, the FCC permanently established CB channel 9 as an emergency! monitoring frequency. For the first time, a vast network of over a million CBers with three million pieces of CB equip ment became available to anyone seriously in trouble and in need of immediate assitaryce. To obtain help, all the CB.r has to do is Jo put out a call on Channel 9, explai·the difficulty and request aid. There are a few places on the North American continent where a motorist can travel without being in range of a channel 9 monitoriog station or network. The FCCs regulations concerning the use of CB are about the most liberal of any radio se,....ice. In fact, nearly anyone offering a good reason for needing a CB radio will be given a licence to operate up to 24 transceivers. CB rigs are easy to use, . and are all FCC type·approved. The majority of CB dealers provide repair facilities, so there is no need for the CSer to take a technical exam. In many ways CB provides the best of botht he Amateor and. Industrial Communications worlds. Why a British CB? . I believe there is a very good case for the allocation of a Citizens Band in the Uf<.. Its practical benefits for co·operatives and community ventures are obvious. And technically, it would be easy to establish. In the US, CB equipment is available from most of the Japanese and American equipment manufacturers. fmportation of such equipment into the UK is at present banned, as 27MHz is presently allocated (or other purposes, about which more later. Over·an initial period following the establishment of. British CB, import controls could be maintained to give the o UK electronics industry a chance to go I .{ into production, thus creating a large number of jobs and giving a much·needed boost to the industry . A typical 23·" chann·1 CB rig in the States costs under, . £60, and would thus be within the reach of a large number of potential users in the UK. Low·powet, Ifconce·free walkietalkies are available for a few pounds. Technical proposals I would suggest the establishment of a UK Citizens Band along the lines of the North American CB. The 27MHz band is at present allocated to rad io·controlled models. In the States, only CB channel 23 (27.255MHz) is shared between CB and model control users. UK legiSlation should be introduced to allocate the 27MHz band to CB and model control users In the same way as in the USS: Class C (model control) is allocated to
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Channels (MHz): 26.995, 27.045, 27.095, 27.145,27.255. Class D (Citizens Band) uses Channels 1·8 and 10·23 for use for communication between unit> of the same station, and Channels 10·15 and 23 between units of different stations (see table for frequencies). ________________
CHANNEL MHz 1 26.965 2 26.975 3 26.985 4 27.005 5 27.015 . 6 27.025 7 27.035 8 27.055 10. 27.075 11 27.085 12 27.105 13 27.115 14 27.125 15 27.135 16 27.155 17 27.165 18 27.175 19 27.185 20 27.205 21 27.215 22 27.225 23 27.255

________________ The frequency 27.065 MHz (Channel 9) is allocated sorely for either emergency . c:.ommunications involving the imntediate safety of life of individuals or the immediate protection of property, or communications n·sary to render assistance to a motorisL It will be noted that two channels are unallocated (27.235 and 27.245 MHz). Whilst there appears 10 be no reason why these should nol be allocaled in the UK, in the interests of standardising equipment I would suggest ,Ihat channel allocalions be made as Ihey are in Ihe US. Allematively they could be allocated to Model Control. As UK model control equipmenl is currently operated On frequencies all over Ihe 27MHz band, tsuggest thai, from Ihe .. date of institution of a Citizens Band, all new model control gearshould be manu·factured 10 operale 0; the allocaled channels (as above), but existing
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equip·. ment be permitted 10 use Pr_nt channels for up to 15 years without change. Licence fees would cost, say, £2.50 and be valfd for a 5·year period. Call signs could be allocated on the basis of one call sign per system, in Ihe form of three letters and four digits. A call sign GAA 1234, for example, would apply equally to base stalions and mobiles " 18 within the same system, although individual users would be allocated their own call signs. . It is only fair to point out that the CB situation in the States has become somewhat chaotic In some places. This, I believe, is due to insufficient conti·olaf sales and licensing. When a rig is bought in the Siates, it is lefl to the purchaser to apply for a licence. I would suggest that in Ihe UK, the Ifcence applfcalion should be filled out and the fee paid al the point of purchase. This would remoye the possibility of unlicensed users: Licence . renewal forms could be made available at Post Offices .. Citizens Band Campaign I suggest the formation of a Citizens Band Campaign to promote the establish·menl of CB in Britain. Its aim would be to publicise CB Ihrough the media by means of discussionsJ local radio presentations, leaflets, car stickers, and aU the usual ""raphe mali a required to bring a ma\ter to public attention. The suI>sequent aim would be to obby MP·, to ensure the introduction of alWYlite Members BiII·and eventual Home Office legislation. Such an end coUlclYHfI be years in coming, but il will be worth the . effort. All letters on this subject should be directed to , CITIZENS BAND CAMPAIGN, c/o Undercurrents, 213 Archway R""", London N6 5BN. Richard Elen
Notes 1. The Peoples Radio Primer, Undercurrents 7 2. Opening Up the Airwaves, Undercurrents 8 3. CRT O ... ft, articles In Rodlcal Techf1Ology, Wildwood House, 1976. 4. Much of this section h ... dapted from the CB Radio Operators Handbook, published by CB Exces$Ories inc., 5852 Dewey St., HoUywood, Florida 33024. 5. FCC re,ulltlons concernin& CB are in Put 95, FCC Rule!. & Regulations,anlWJle from the Superintendent of Documents, Government Print In. Office, Wuhlnrton, DC 20402. (foreisn subscriptions for Volume VI, containing parts 95,·7 &: 99 are 6.70 US Dollarsl. ,3·to get more mi·out of·u .. (;B·radio . ", (and stay out of trouble with the FCC) , ,

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Sommer Cabinets Crystal Balls Cracked
THE results of what appear to be the Governments first attempts at pure, long·range futurology were published in March by the Cabinet Office in a curious report entitled Future World Trends, Dwarfed in the headlines by the election of a new Labour Party leader, Future World Trends did not receive the critical attention it deserves. But as Undercurrents amateur amateur futurologist Peter Sommer reports, the Cabinets crystal ball is cracked in quite a few places . . Future World Trends, a modest·looking 281>08e report with a yellow cover, is in fact a most unusual document. The Government usually proouces two sorts of paper: White·stating policy; and Green·a distussion document. In addition, the Cabinets own Think Tank, the Central Policy Review Staff,sometimes publishes reports with a Ted cover. But the CPRU, set up originally under Lord Rothschild, is concerned only with medium·term forecasting in specific areas. It did not produce Future World Trends, though according to a Cabinet Office spokesman it "knew"what was going on". It is very rare for adocument to come out under the imprimatur of the Cabinet Office and obviously, in the sign language of policy·making, it has considerable status. And that is what is both puzzling and worrying aboul it. The Committee that produced it is simply described as interdepartmental with neither personnel nor even their Ministries specifically listed. Its first achievement was to set up a Systems Analysis Research Unit (SARU) within the Department of the Environment. The head of this unit is Peter Roberts, an economist with Systems tfainim·. We can take it that Roberts was a member of this interdepartmental committee. as was Dr. Press, the Governments notional Chief Scientific Adviser since thedeparture of Sir Alan Cotterell.·The paranoid may take alarm at this secrecy alone but a greater cause for worry is that the d6cument itself can be , quite seriously faulted. Fault Number One relates to energy Most of the worlds problems·i.e .. shortage of food, shortage of eaSily accessible raw·materials and overpopulation·can be solved given enough energy I the report suggests (overpopulation can be solved when standards of living increase). The implicit pointer is towards a rapidly developing nuclear programme. The trouble with this is that energy isnt just a single commodity used for one purpose_ Though it may be convenient to express
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energy production, storage and consumption in a single common energy , unit, our real needs are fourfold:· 1. Energy for indGsuy and agriculture, which in many cases can be tapped directly from wind, waves, the sun, the earths heat; waterfalls and similar sources, without an intermediate electrical phase. 2. Energy for heat, where electrical conversion is highly inefficient, 3. Energy for light, where electrichy tends to be necessary. And 4. Energy to drive motors and electronic components, where a precisely regulated supply of electricity is essential. In only one token place does Future World Trends show signs of understanding this need for differentiation. Yet many of the calcul,ations madein FWT would have to be altered if such factors were taken into consideration. Local irrigation schemes in theThirdWorld may need energy to power them but·who says it has to be electrical energy?" " Fault Number Two relates to Mineral Resources The papers authors take great pride in point/Ill out that, con·ary. to conventional ecofreak belief the.!e is no , serious lack of mineral resource, given enough energy and capital. The known reserves figures are misleading, they suggest·the result of over<onservativism in the mining industry. Resources are simply a function of cost within the mechanism that brings supply and demand into equilibrium. They even suggest that in many cases the cost of recycling may be higher than the cOst of primary metal from new (albeit increasingly low·grade) ores. There are three mistakes here. First. the essential problem of mineral resources from a national point of view is one of access at the right price. Theres not much comfort in the knowledge that 5.8% of the earths crust is iron if the forms in which it is easily extracted are controlled by foreign powers or under the sea·bed (for which as yet no·law exists and over which we may see considerably enlarged wars of the sort currently going on off Iceland over just one species of white fish). Thefact is that, resources being a function of costs and costs affecting prices. the greatest demand will still be for the highest grade, of any are (or fuel) currently available at a particular time. So the availability of cheap energy from Fast Breeder Reactors doesnt change very much. Second, the availability of mineral resources, released by the input of energy, doesnt guarantee ihat the Third World is going to get them. Resources being , a function of costs, if the Third World cant offer the price, either now or later, then it will never get access to those resources and the
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present differences between the Developed and Under·developed se·rors may actually increase if more resources:become available to the rich countriesbecauSe of technological innovation and. cheap energy. The third ml¢lke relates to recycling. In a discussi",,pilper of this sort one would hav.e like·to·have seen mentioned two things. Firstty, that recycling doesnt have to take tI·form of returning to base metal; items intended" for one usc can be adapted easily, for other purposes. Secondly, a lot of recycling would be unnecessary if essenti·cOnsumer durabl,es 1·" were made to last·couldnt the paper have condemned planned obsolescence? Fault Number Three relates to Aid. In looking at world problems, the paper is struck by the dominance of qyerpopulation over all other problems·Ihe pressure of too many people demanding too many things will cause a violenl instability in global peace, it says, and this instability is almost Independent of whether the West is prepared to accept a lower siandard of living. Stabilisalion of population size wilhout a catastrophe is possible only on an optimistic reading and projection of the figures·implying rigorous contraception policies together with aid to free Ihe food and mineral resources of the third World 10 enable il to enrich itself ,·which may be enough, if the hoped·for improvement in .. standards of living brings down fertility. The papers language in regard to aid, though benevolenl and liberal, is still rather colonial, albeil of the naive missionary variety. Aid really takes three forms: certainly Ihere is the directly charitable variety; then there is the more usual form·the provision of national funds in a developed country 10 finance a particular capital requirement in . an undevelOped one, usually a require·menl for goods Ihallhe donor nation has ilself made. Brilain offers aid to Mozambique in the form of a loan to buy £15m worlh of Brilish goods. Hydr·, electric schemes in the Third World provide profils for the leading industries in the donor nalions. This form of aid is nol to be dismissed completely; but the sort of praclical aid that aqually becomes availablelends 10 be high technology and .centralised in nature·to·the benefit, mainly, of the international consortia and _ the temporary rulers of the recipient nation. The benefits where they are actually needed are indirecl in the extreme. The third type of aid·the one which is ignored by FWT and which is neither especially COSIly, nor profilable to the donor·is Intermediate or Appro priate Technology, small·scale in nalure and based on local requiremenlS·Much technology of this sort isnot capital·intensive and can be spread first by advisers and then by the beneficiaries among themselves. " ,
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Furth.er, there is nothing,automatic in the aid system thaI supplies energy (Ihe necessary saving ingredienl) 10 an underdeveloped counlry Ihateanl pay for il·•·either in cash or in ttml.Sof future o prospects of relurn in tile form of food··stuffs.and mineral resoUr.ceS. One con·.·sequ.ence or its reco·ations which FWT ignores is thaI an "nbalanced growlh of big lech energy concern may .. aClually retard economiC .. developmcfll in ,·some Third World coUl}t1ies, Fault Number Four is that the futuroIogists havent followed through all the likely implications of the predictions Weve already seen how;:(h.y " i,lead .th·sel.ves over m ineral:tesources by not referring to the current Conference on the Law of·the Sea. But a mO·reserious worry i, Iheir lack of polilicalnous in looking al nuclear policy. Implicitin"FWTis . a scenario which runs along the following lines: "The kcy 10 most of Ihe worlds " fulure problems is cheap energy. Thus we must have a large programme devoled to nuclear power·probably the Fast Breeder or Fusion. It From·thi, apparently inescapable con·clusion an amateur futurologist can poinl out the following disquieling corollarie·: 1. The danger of accidental pollulion increases. If the present safety factor,is 99,99% (ju,t suppose) then a tenfold, increase in nuclear power stations requires a safety faclor of 99.999% just to maintain our existing standards. 2. Simply moving nuclear materials aboul creates the danger of losse, in transil to group likery to adopt nuclear I>bckmail. 3. A real nuclear development programme would demand so much capilal that it would both have 10 be shared by, ,everal nations and il wou Id be necessary to sell the producl (in Ihe ,form of reprocesse<l, fuel or reprocessing plants) to almo,t any country prepared 10 pay. It wouldnl ,be enough 10 sell other countries the electrical energy ou!pat afterwards capital would be required most when the programme i, being developed. This is of course·aIready happening. 4. Even if the nuclear programme moves ahead peacefully, Ihere is still likely to be a scramble for mineral resources. Thenasliet wars have alway been foughl for economic advantage"",. and one scenario currently popular with defence experts, s·ggests that war might arise not be<:.ause of a counlrys need for food and minerals for its own people, bul because of its de,ire to deny them 10 its enemies ... which i, why the hawks are worried aboul the Russian navy around Africa. As a paper, the kindest Ihing one can say aboul FWT is Ihal it isn I very
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good. Scenario·building about Ihe future. requires some _imagination·if it iS,to give inspiration 10 policies. The trouble is Ihat the people who pr,epared FWT are hooked on one idea c» progress, and only one. They cannot understand a fulure in wh ich the nation stale andbig industry plays a ""alJer part in j>COpl··lives. FWT , cannot see (even if il disagrees) Ihe virtues of moving to the smaller scale of living, , 0 organising; and producing. In fact, the,·whole document" 10 seasoned readers of f·lurological u.tlerances, 10Gks curiously dated, with ils laboured ,explanation of tr·1ia extrapolation andits·curious emphasis on fOllution·like avery delayed reaCtion to the 1972 Stockholm E nviro(lll1ent Conference . The puzzle is Why th·docu,",ent was produted at all, Is..it a manoeuvre wilh" the EEC? Or h,!, some group of·civil, servants dccided to help Government formulate a serics of very long·term objectives? WC·d0nt know, and were not likely 10. WhalWC do know is that,given·Ihe slated intentions; the,self·appointed policy makcrs bavent. done a very Ihorough or convincing iob .. Which all goc, to conlinn what We ,ospecled all along·the exi>ting political processes ar··largely beyond redemption, Peter Sommer Future World Trends HMSO. 60p

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Boyle The Winds Of Charge
SLOWL BUT SURELY, the perform·ance of the Undercurrents windmill (see UCS II, 12 and 15) has been improving. On testing the design as described in UC 15, il soon became obvious that the o gear ratio between the propeller and the alternator was still not high enough .. As we had suspected, with a 8: 3 gear , ratio the alternator only began to cut in,and charge the baltery in windspeeds between 15 and 20 mph. On installing larger pulley (72 teeth inslead of 48) on the propeller shaft, jlhe cut·in windpeed, dropped to an estimated 10·15 mph. (Increasing the, gear ratio, were pleased to report, has .. negligible effect on the machines starting characleri,tics). This is still a billoo high to enable the windmill to take advantage of the mainly low wind speeds in our region, so were planning 10 replace the ,mall pulley on the alternator, which has 18 teeth, with an even smaller one having only 12 teeth. When, th is is done, we should have a 6: 1 gear ratio, and the windmill ,hould begin 10 charge in wind, well below 10 mph. The te,t re,ulls which follow, hOWever, relate to a 4:1 gear ratio·Connecting the alternator in the battery volta·" sensed mode instead of the machine ,sensed mode (see UC 1 5) seems , to resull in an only slighlly.greater " charging curren L Another contributing factor 10 this low charge may be Ihe , I. cabie resistance.·At the moment, were iusl using ordinary hOusehold appnance wire, but we,wHI be reverting to heavy 35A cooker wire soon. Weve found Jhat it is, however, . possible to·gel quite a lot more power out of the alternalorby decreasing the balleT) voltage·i.e. by connecling the . battery terminals to the 10 volt tap, WINDS CHARGE ping on the battery (omitting one cell of the battery, .in qtherwords). You cant easily do. this, of course, if your battery is of the type in which the cell terminals are covered by the casing. When we reduced the battery voltage to lOv, the charging current jumped to 5 amps (correspondirig to 50 watts power output); and when we reduced the voltage to 8v, the current increased til 8 amps (corresponding to 64 watts). We hope to have more enlightening neWs pf all this in UC 17. Scrap Technology Brigade Meanwhile, theres encouraging news from the scrap technology brigade. Mick Parsons and Pete McConville of St Austell, Comwall, have come up with_ a windmill which, though it obviously owes a lot to the original Undercurrents Mark I design, tackles the problem of that design (see UC
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12) in a way thats significantly different to our approach. Details are shown in the drawing. There are quite a few interesting points worth noting. . .. Pete and Mic·obviously decided to try to overcome the problem of frictionallosses, which you encounter if you try to use·Vee belts for gearing, by using a·slightly bigger propellor (7flinstead of 6ft) andby adopting a different blade profile with higher torque (bu t lower speed). Since th·s approach, they assure us, works very well, itlooks like we overestimated the Yee belt friction problem. Maybe well try vee belts, too·theyre certainly a lot cheaper. . The use of an old dynamo as a bearing (Dave Andrews used this idea in his big COMTEK windmill) is certainly neat and cheap, though in the long term the lack of a thrust bearing may cause problems. A particularly clever idea is the old car w"dscreen wiper, used for holding in the swinging tail vane. The sysu,m for erecting and collaps. ing the tower is also obviously a good·idea. . The only thing I dont like.is the use of wood, instead of steel, for the main member: Mick and Pete imply that its strong enough, but·I have my doubts. Id also like to see a manual brake somewhere·our adapted bicycle brake would be easy to fit. Andit would _ be nice to see some figure$ for the acto·al charging current generated in winds of various speeds. If other readers have feedback on their own versions of Undercurrents’ windmill, or similar designs, wed be glad to hear from them. We alternative recnnology freaks may not have the time, money and engineering facilities of NASA, but what we have got is people, . ingenuity and enthusiasm. And although it may take us a while to get our simple low·cost A. T. designs together and working properly, .... e cen do it if We help .one another. Godfrey Boyle

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Woody Declaration·Of·Independence
The public images of Tzars and Princes crumble long before their actual thrones do. I dont know who said this, but I think it contains an important insight into the way cultures are held together. As physical objects, societies simply dont exist; the world is scattered·ith people, houses, farms, factories, etc thats a1l. Modern nation·5tates exist only in the heads of people who believe themselves to be subjectfand give allegiance an inflow of energy, if you like. Two points to think abouL First, de f«to power (the power of the sword to secure physical obedience) has nothing to do with iL Most Norwegians did not think of themselves as German during the occupation of 1940·45. And many Armenians, Basques, Nagas, still dont think of themselves as Turkish, Spanish, Indian, even after years of de facto subjection. Second, it just doesnt matter whether you are hostile or loyal to the regime of a nationstate so long as you feel yourself to be part of it; the energy of your allegiance props it up just the same. Only by transferring your de jure (in the head) allegiance can you withdraw that energy. (Most radicals do not yet understand that opposition strengthens). MOdern nations are compulsory _ They each lay dairrito large chunks of land, and to.a1llhfj human beings, animals, plants and ri!sources on that land. (A similar carve urfof the sea is now under way). Worslii sil/l, most citizens give their de.iuiY·ition to this state of affairs: they ICCeP) in their heads that they are the property .of one state; that there is n<rchoice. And because they believe it,. it is so. A WOrd about democracy. Many modern states believe themselves to be democratic. Either Peoples Democracies or Free Democracies acoording to their politics: you can make words mean anything you like! BuUf democracy is translated literally it means government by the people, wh ich means that each and every person is sovereign: that their co·operation is always voluntary. So being a democrat also means accepting the naturaJ world as a common heritage; and not the property of this or that state. It means rejecting all frontiers. In other words, the first"condition of real democracy is the right to opt out. But to speak of rights is to fall back into the trap of de jure allegiance on which the compulsory slate is founded. A demand for rights is an appeal to law •.. Vet lawful and unlawful ale matters for your head to decide. Vour conscience is the only law. True, you s.till confront the same de facto powers. And those who constrain you may also believe themselves to be lawful. But
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the act of withdrawal itself is." option Mways open to us: the hlockage is in your own head: Make allegiance a con·. scious act. Become a democrat today!·Butto which state, to which·culture, shall we volunteer our a1legiance?"Many people, including some who would count themselves radicals, will at once repledge q,emselves·to one of the compulsory nation states. For those of us committed to alternative culture, to human communities, to the fourth world, this would be crazy·and . hypocritical. What then? Some have ancient but suppressed nan"al cultJIres to identify with: Kurds, Bretons, American Indians, Celts, and so on. The rest of us are less, fortt,mate. I argue now that we need to create new voluntary nations, new purposemade cultures as positive cen·s for our allegiance; as the political cutting edge of our whole endeavours. In particular, I propose the state of Albion throughou t the lands of the Angles and Saxons. The narne Albion has a fair pedigree; has been used for some time by certain individuals; and already seems to be coming" into geriefatuse in the·alternative movement. By definition, a voluntary state wou Id ha.·no frontiers. Also by definition, a voluntafY. state would be . alternative_ tolnot a replacement for, the co·existing rump of the "Jd state. Could such a declaration by a small nu mber of people be anything more than a paper exercise? I think it could. Its true that when an individual leaves the United Kingdom (as I did in 1970) nothing changes except in his or her . head. (Though that in itself is very important). But when several people are·involved, their practical·internal relations can reOecttheir beliefs. And these ways of going on become part of th. de facto world for other people who come into contact with them. The new situation is reacted 10 (either favourably or unfavourably). For a pc<:ket example of this type of change, consider the womens movement and the gradual acceptance of MIs in place of Mrs or Miss. But could the declaration lie anything more than a political exercise, in the narrow sense of the word? This is a more seriou"s question. Political, rearrangement is meaningless without social change. On the other hand, social changes finally need political form to express themselves. My case is that alternative culture has . been growing steadily for some years, as we have fought bitterly with ourselves to establish new spaces in our heads, ne ¥l values and attitudes, new lifestyles, new ways of relating to each other. Maybe some of us havent got very far. And the total we is small in terms of most old nations. But our alternative sub·culture is already a social reality. . If the time is ripe, I believe that Albion (and similar nations) would help us in·our battle with our alienated selves. It would also focus the energies of
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social culture; escalate its growth, and provide a political cutting edge to radical change. On the other hand, I do admit that if this proposal is premature by a few years, it will divert emotional energies away from being radical, and will be subject to the usual spiits and wrangles of old style politics, The beauty of voluntary states, however, is that they get the following they deserve! Perhaps what matters is the way in which AlbiOn is born. This is something for all of us to thrash ouL Meanwhile, there is nothing to prevent you from "leaving the compulsory state which claims you, and pledging allegiance to the fourth world. Little habits matter; like speaking of the British press or Itheir electionsl instead of Ithe press or·the elections. Above all, never use"we in a sense that means·the British people. Woody Readers’ Meeting MANY Undercurrents readers will, nil doubt, be coming along to Peoples Habitat. So we are arranging a meeting .)m jime 5 for anyone interested in .Ijl$cussingthe mapaine., ...· Similar meetings at CoIritek led to the·letting up·of the Regional Network·of . correspondents, ne·ws hounds and local " organisers. (see UC 13, 14, 15 for details). HOpefully, the meeting in London will help generate some more contacts·particularly volunteers to act as correspondents in the London and surrounding area. For example, we have, more than 200 subscribers in London and another 200 in the home counties, but no correspondents as yet. (Surrey, Essex, Middx, Herts·where are you?) There should be Undercurrents people at.the Festival for some of the time, manning an UC book/mags stall, But on June 5, after lunch (3pm) will be the main Undercurrents ReadersMeeting. See you there; ... _ Although there was a goOd response to the arti"le in UC IS, remember we still need correspondents for many other regions·particularly rural Wales and·Eire, Dorset, Somerset, Bristol, Wilts., Hants, Herefordshire, Norfolk, Berks. ",Beds:, Salop, Leicester, Derby, Liverpool, Cumbria, Glasgow and Nor·thern Scot·land. _ If you are interested contact: Regional Network Dave Elliott 39 Holland Park, London W11 4UB.

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Pedler People’s habitat
This section of Undercurrents is not meant to be our <.i: .... trlbutRm to the earnest delIberations of the elitist plannOls who will be jenlng in their hundrec\s to the United Nations Habitat Conference in Vancouver to work out the Final SeuJement Of The Human Question. _ It is intended as our contribution to the spirit of Pf/ople·Habitat, the Festival of Alternative Living that takes place in Londons s.lrrey Docks at the same time as the·non·event in Vancouver. At Peoples Habitat, we ordinary mortals wUI be coming togethOl to work out how we can wrest control of our living and working environment away from those, both capitalist exploiters and paternalist bureaucrats, who have stolen our f,eedom. We will be exploring new ways of living and working co·operatively with, and for, each other in harmony with the rest of the natural world. . Kit Pedler kicks off this Peoples Habitat series of articles with a prOVOCati \le" challenge to the alternative movement to start working out the details of a viable alternative lifestylenow, before its too late. ALTERNATIVE TECHNOLOGY and the alternative life·style are rapidly approaching a crisis where progress could either accelerate rapidly or grind to a halt altogether. Time and time again, thoroughly happy events are organised where windmills are erected, solar panels grow warm and cliches are exchanged over home·baked bread to an obligato of fol k music, After the regulation discussions of imminent doom, the meetings break up and the participants go back to being parasitic on the very society they hold to be so objectionable llfld nothing is achieved. Meanwhile the voradous claws of high , technology continue to rake the tired earth. The futl:lre of western man is now obviously a neck and neck race between the gentle freedoms of the individual and the completely efficient control processes of ruthlessly organised national bureaucracies. Realistic alternative technoloRies have one great politically·important function; they could restore some aspects of those freedoms to individuals who are fast becoming decerebrated by the media, stripped of skills by the seductions of the commercial world and made to work even harder at dehumanising tasks to earn money to pay grossly inflated prices for the basic necessities of food, warmth and shelter and to buy glittering artefacts of no conceivable function. No changes are in sight and the position grows inexorably worse. I f people can really be offered detailedpians of howto achieve their own independence by alternative means, then the centralised
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purveyors of their basic needs can be isolated and disemployed. But the great problem at the moment is that alternative technology does not work, because it has not been studied arid worked out In anything like sufficient detail to I1lakeit a viable replacement for the exlstl!ll of.dq. If a member of an urban commune catches pneumonia hewill stil; need the antibiotics of straight medicine to survive. If a person visits another group, ilis almost certain that he will burn petrol, oil or coal inthe process. He or she will need to eat a minimum amount of protein, carbOhydrates and fat to avoid starvation. Where will it all come from? If alterna:tlve and more self·sufficient housing is to emerge in urban areas, repressive rating laws, Irrelevant building regulations ap,d autocratic planning authorities of no competence will have to be fought and·beaten in the courts. The alternative future is not to do with tools alone, it is to do with the effects of tools and how the over·riding influence and power of the commercialised tool makers can be excelled and thus isolated. It is also to do with the courage . necessary to spurn the grotesque and dangerous pharmacopeia offered to the sick by the archaic rigidities of technical mediCine. It also concerns the development of alternative food technologies to replace the overpackaged and systematically poisoned imitations of food to be found on the supermarket shelves. Hard, unremitting detailed study must begin now. The whole fabric of alternative living must be researched, assembled and disseminated as rapidly as possible before the existing system can be dismantled. There is simply no time to lose, we can no longer afford to wait for someone else to work out the details. There is an enormously powerful and richly humane spirit abroad within the alternative movement. I absolutely believe in its power for change, in its power to give back to a tired and sickened people a self·regard which is being crushed out of them by ,the all powerful effects of the commercial·governmental axis and the faceless bullying of the bureaucrats. .r a create a detailed manifesto for a viable alternative life we need special skills quickly. Engineers, jurists. healers, scientists, writers, artists. We all fit in, we all have a contribution to make. At Rotherhithe Street, Surrey Docks, on the, 29th May until the 6th June a festival of alternative living is being held. Will you go, and if so why? Kit Pedler Details from: Fiona Cantell, People. Habitat, 9 King Street London WC2 Tel: 01·240 2106.

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Garden Villages of Tomorrow
City people cannot live without country people. But they can certainly live without knowing them. Country peOple are usually behind glass. seen through a car or train window or on the odd farming programme on TV. They are always on tractors or combine harvesters, it seems, and the machines are getting larger every year. Country people are also few ,and far between·certainly those who actually produce the food we eat. In Briiain they have been gening " fewer every year for the last,couple of hundred years: 75% of the land in Britain is farmed and yetlitlle more than 1% of the population work thaIland, the lowest percentage of.any country in the world. The enclosures and land clearances of previous centuries emptied the land of people. Country dwellers became city dwellers; peasants became industrial workers. The drop in food production in the 19th century was more than offset by rapid growth of industrial production: industrial exports could pay for the increasingly necessary food imports many time over. The expanding colonial empire opened up new sources of cheap food, raw materials and teady export markets. In the years just before the second workl war Britain imported 70% of its food. The experience of the war drove home the point that greater food selfsufficiency was highly desirable. The Agriculture Act of 194 t set out to stimulate food production by giving farmers guaranteed prices for their pro·duce. And greater food self·sufficiency has been achieved, despite the p,opulation growth of·the last 30 years, despite loss, of considerable amounts of farming land for develDpment purposes and despite the fact that an average of about 25,000 people a year have left agriculture. Britain now produces just over 50% of the food it consumes. The increase in food production has been achieved by ever more capital·intensive methods based largely on imported oil, fertiliz·and animal feed. And yet, due to the world food shortage Britains food import bill has been going up all the time, particularly in the last couple of years. World food prices rose by 35% between 1972 and 1974. Over this period Britains total food import bill , increased from £1,750 million to , £3,000 million, but industrial exports in 1975 were 8% below the level of 1973. Britain is still the largest food importer in the world·with the possible exception of Japan and the Soviet Union in a bad year like 1975·and yet we have enough land to produce virtually 01/ the food we need.
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From the recent White Paper Food from our own resources I published in April 1975, it is obvious that the government is not really.willing to face up to the changing world situation:The Paper simply calls for an annual increase of 2.5% in food production over the next ten years or so. Thats all. Increases are proposed for cereal, milk and meat production but it is suggested that vegetable production will remain at present low levels. Ever more c:apital and energy·intensive methods are suggested to achieve the 2.5% annual increase. A continued supply of ever·increasing amounts of import·d fertilizers is taken for granted, despite rising prices. It is assumed that the number of people working the land is not likely to drop much further, despite the fact that yet another 16,000 agricultural workers left the land in 197.t' Within a few months of the publication of the White Paper it became clear that there had in fact been a drop in food production in 1975. Output fell by about ' 10% compared with 1974, so the food , import bill in 1975 must have exceeded that of 1974 considerablv, The prospects for 1976 dont exactly look rosy, considering that world grain stocks are probably the lowest in living memory." The Paper does not even consider" proposals for changes in diet from animal to vegetable protein as a possible waY,to bring about greater food ;If·sufficiency. But for us to go over to ealing more vege1ables would require more people working the land, and complex changes in agricultural practices, which would interfere with the interests of landowners and farmers. This 3Doe.ars to be somethino:·. .. fofTomorrow l! That plain truth is so obvious that it may not seem worth . , but it cmnot provide us with food. Vet city dw;lJers tend to take . ed and eaten. Who knows where it actuallr comes from, and who has n. A ougar or potato mortage can make uo feel a bit uneaoy for a while .. thio are notopade, plOURh or rake, but knife, opoon and fork •. from industrial overdevelopment relative to its limited resources base. Like West Germany and Japan, Britains industrial eConomy depends almost entirely on imported raw materials and it is .now clear that North Sea Oil is going to offer only tempor.ary relief. Moreover, counuies all over the world, both socialist and capitaliot, are.developing their own industries. Brazil, Iran, South Korea and . Spain are the lateot exampleo of the rapidly growing·competition in export markeU. . , too tricky for governments to become involved. in. Agriculture and the. location of settlements It io clear that one of the key problems Britain has to face up to io the otructural imbalance between agriculture and industry and between. town and country. This is a .heritage of Britains imperialist past when continued
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industrial growth . was essential to increase its sphere. of influence and control. The idea that there is a fundamental imbalance between town and country, and between agriculture and industry. is not new. Robert Owen held this view as long ago .. 1815, at a time when the industrial revolution was only just beginning to take off. Marx and Engels repeatedly made the point that the tension between town and country could be overcome only under socialism and in the communist manifesto they advocated the "combination of agriculture with manufacturing industry and gradual abolition of the distinction between town and country, by a more equable dis .. tribution of the population over the country. Kropotkin, following in Owens footsteps. advocated the creation of new villageS where a mixture of agriculture ane . omall·scale induotry should be practised, asa way of overcol1)ing the distinction between town and country. In his book Fields, Foetor/es and Workshops (1899) he deplored the overdevelopmen t of Britioh industry. " ..• the fieldo of Britain are starved of human iabour ... The British nation·does not work on her soil; she is prevented from doing so; and the would·be economists complain that the soil will not nourioh its inhabitanU."·At that time 1 ,400,000 people were working the land; today there are little more than 600,000 working in agriculture. Ebenezer Howard, the father of the garden city, belonged very much to the same school 9f thought as Kropotkin. The garden city was meant to combine low demity housin&. with industrial. • eotateo and plenty of open opace so that the inhabitanU had the chan .. to be in close contact with nature; it was to have a pOpulation not exceeding 32,000.·Howard proposed the ernergence of many such cities not just in Britain but in all" industrialised countries as "an earnest attempt ... to organize a migratory movement of populltion from the overcrowded centres to sparsely .. ttled rural districts."" . Since the war nearly all the large cities in Britain have experienced a drop in population. From 1961 to 1971 the population of London has gone down from 7,99·,443 to 7,379,014; that of Liverpool from 745,750 to 606,848; that of Glasgow from 1,057,679 to 897,848; and that of Birmingham from 1,110,683 to 1,013,365." Thus over one million people have left the big cities du ring that ten year period, This is a remarkable development, considering that there was consider·ble population growth in the same time. The emergence of the new towns has certainly succeeded in bringing about a dispersal of population away from the great conurbations. But it has not
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done much to red lice the contradicti9ns between agriculture and industry and towns and country. The inhabitants of the new towns are migrants from th··rural·areas as well as from the big cities. By reducing the number of people working the land they have worsened the imbalance between agriculture and .. industry. I n the new towns there is no in·e&ration between agriculture and . industry, the vulnerability of the people to industrial unemplol<,ment has not been reduced, and.the people have been brought closer to nature only in a visual sense, not in the p,ractice of their everyday lives. The new towns must be can·sidered as a step in the right direction but part of a process which has not yet been completed. Some people argue that the dispersal of people and industries in Britain has now gone far enough and should go no further. The Greater London Council recently pointed out that London has not only experienced a great loss of population during the last thirty years, but also . a massive loss of industries, a process which, according to the GlC, threatens the citys economic viability. Friends of the Earth in their discussion paper Losing Ground argue that "agricultural land should be regarded as the nations most valuable asset, and that the annexing of agricultural land for any irreversible . development should cease forthwith. ". The Conservation Society makes the same point in its worki"fi,party paper . Priority for Agriculture, . which strongly argues against any further housiiig and industrial development an agricultural land as this, it is claimed;woilld ,.duce Britains chances of maiittairllna,lel alone increasing, its JeveloffOlld,pro·. duction. (During the years 1963.to 1972 an average of about 100,000 acres was lost in this way.) Greaterfood self·. sufficiency is considered by both groups as essential as the world food situation is likely to deteriorate considerably in the coming years. So the Conservation Society and Friends of the Earth consider it vital for more people to work the land. But they do not consider how this is to be done without some population dispersal and without building houses for all these new country dwellers, probably on agricultural land. Surely they do not suggest building rural high·rise blocks? We have got to come to terms with an entirely new situation. The priority of development over the coming decades will have to be devctopmentof new agriculturally based villages rather than new industrial towns. New villages To argue for new villages mean·, of cou"rse, to argue for land·resettlcment. It must be remembered that the agricultural land as such u.sed to be much more densely populated than it is today. Nowadays only 20% of the
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population live in the rural areas which make up 75% of the land in Britain.All over the country can be found traces of former villages which were burned in war, razed to the ground as a result of the enclosures and clearances, or abandoned by people seeking their·fortunes in the cities or in countries overseas. By the beginning of the 19th centurv virtually all the land: which was once common land·had been taken over by landlords. Never before had there been such a concentration of land ownership in such few hands, with tlie exception . perhaps of Tsarist Russia. In 1892 for the first time, during an economic crisis period, land was taken over by the Liberal government and by local authorities for land resettlement and for use as allotments. I t was argued that . smallholdings "could assist in safeguarding home supplies of food in the event of emergency." The Small Holdings and Allotments Act of 1908 gave county councils powers of compulsory purchase of agril;ulturalland for the purpose of creating more small holdings and allotments. By 1914 there were 15,000 smallholdings on 200,000 acres largely owned by local authorities. After the first world war, more smallholdings were created for ex·servicemen and in the 1930s the Great Depression led to \he provision of lana for unemployed factory workers. In 1934 the Land Settlements Association was I established with Government sponsorship which encouraged co·operation by the·mallholders in buying a,nd selling and in the use of equ ipment. By 1947 nearly 30,000 smallholders were. cultivating over 450,000 acres of agricultural land owned by local authorities and other government bodies. The 1947 agriculture act encouraged the formation of co·ops but since the second world war and the consequent industrial boom the area under cultivation haSdropped to about 420,000 acres and there are now about 22,OOQ sinallholdings on this land. The Scott Committee on land Utilisation in the Rural Areas; in 1942, concluded: "Under the individualistic basis on which they (the smallholdings) were for the most part run, with little attempt to.foster co·. operative buying and selling, or indec;d, working;thesmallholder had little hope of succeeding. When, later on, some were run on a co·operative basis, tlie chance of success was greatly improved:· The governmentspo·sored small·holdings of the 1930.s were created as a response to the severe unemployment situation of that time. However) as a solution to that problem they were a drop in the ocean. In the end it was the war which solved the problem of unemployment. With ever more capital··intimsive methods of food productiori becoming the order of the day: small·scale farming has been activelv discouraged by successive post·war governments: An expansion of agricultural production with the
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aimof approaching self·sufficiency in food would require a radical rethink about present methods of cultivation and the relationship between land) peopte) plants. and animals .. Neither agri·business nor. smallholdings) are the answer. It would not be a solution for the state to take over millions of acres of land which would then be carved up into hundreds of thousands of individual smallholdings for unemployed industrial workers. As past experiences have shown this would encourage isolation and comPetitIon rather than communicatio"n and co·operation between people. Rather the solution lies in the emergence of new villages with co·operative agriculture as the main economic base. What could such new villages be like? Before drawing up actual plans for such new settlements we must define a numller of criteria which they would have to fulfil: 1. Achievement of a food surplus rattier . than village self .. ufficiency. 2. Minimum external energy requirem_ents. 3. Ecological diversity and long·term viability; ecologicallv sound cultiva·tion methods. . 4. Co·operative life·style, but with scope for privacy. , 5. Variety of activities·arts, crafts, horticulture, agriculture, sm·ll·scale industry. 6. I nteraction between the various age groups. . 7. Emphasis on renewable resources base. 8. Avoidance of isolationism; exchange between town and country encouraged. 9. Scope for spontaneous and continued d·eropment·no finalJ fixed structure. . 10. local democratic control and decision·niaking; minimum depend·ance on distant bureaucracies. 11. Emphasis on sustainable lif ... tyle, but not at the level of struggle for .. sheer SllrvivaJ.. . . 12. Emphasis on sharing transpotj, tools, etc. . A key question is whether it would be right to build new village settlements on agricultural land. Although it is correct to reject any further conventional industrial industrial development on agricultural land, there could be ways in which the development of new villages would actu·"y
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Increase food output from thl) land area on which they weie built, despite the fact that some land would have to be taken over for housing. The . main consideration here is what happens·when agricultural land is turned into hottlculturalland. It is well·known that the output per acre of land which is used :! for horticulture is much higher than thatj of land used for agriculture. If a village .. was built on farm land and if. each house was surrounded by a fair·sized kitchen garden the food output from the area on which the village was built would be , increased very considerably compared with Hs previous output as agricultural land. A·Best an(f Ward stress in their. paperThe Garden Controversy, output per acre in gardens is so much higher than that under agricultural use that the loss of l land for buildin& houses is more than I compensated for. r·This is because much greater attention can be given to each individual plant in a vegetable garden . than in large agricultural fields. As a resultof such considerations, I am proposing a type of village layout which places a considerable emphasis on "the household garden. Each house should have a garden large enough to be able to supply the inhabitants with all of their vegetable requirements, i.e. half an acre to one acre; this would be suffichmt for four::. . to eight people per house. I am proposing the concept of rounded gardens, for several reasons. These gardens would allow spaces i:1 between wh ich could be planted with trees for use by the whole community·nut trees, fruit . trees and trees for fire·wood. The intcr·, stices could also be used {or·grazing goats, and other animals. They would also offer plenty of space for childrens play. At the same time the trees would contribute to raising the water table of land previously used for monoculture cropping. The scattered clusters of trees in the spaces " between gardens would be part of an integrated scheme of land·use, worked out in accordance with local soil and climatic conditions. It has been shown that the food yi·lds from trees on a given area of land can also be much higher over .time than those possible from conventional agriculture. The emergence o.f these new villages could take place on existing farms taken over specifically for this purpose. If we take the average 300·acre farm, 20 to 30 acres might be taken over for the new village and this land would be transfened fromagr.icultyral tohortic.JlturaJ use. The remaining 270 acres of land surrounding the new community would be farmed jointly by the inhabitants of the new community, on a co·operative or collective. basis. using ecologically sound, husbandry_ It is here that a surplus could . be produced whiih would provide the community with a cash income. At the same timeworkshop space should be available in the village for crafts
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and small·Scale industry, preferably Jor processing local raw materials. These workshop, could cater for the needs of the community 35 welfas providing additional income from (trade. In this kind of setting children should have the opportunity to learn crafts and skills from an early age. In this way the process of learning would lead to an integration of mind and body, rather than to an artificial separation between head and hands, which is the typical feature of. present education methods. With all the members of the community co·operating on the land .the .scale of mechanisation·in farming could be reeuced to reali·tic and sustainable levels, reducing the necessary energy input required. It might be considered advantageous to continue using tractors rather than horses because of the very considerable amount of land neceSsary tofeed large draught horses_ (28% of Britains agricultural land, was once u·d . to feed horses.) Tractors could be run on methi/ne gas generated by digesters linked to cow sheds. . The application of natural energy technology will help in the emergence of villages whose inhabitants can look forward to a sustainable way of life. There are several advanced house designs inexisle·c",which could be applied in a village context. All these houses have south·facing solar collector panels which supply energy for hot water and space heating. This solar orientation has consideration lfIlplications for the physical layout of future villages. The simplest solUtiOn woUld be to·use a linear east·west layou!. All the houses would have easy road access and have solar orientation at the same time: there would be no problem with houses throwing shadows on each other. But new villages will emerge along existing country roads and lanes, and they dont all run east to west. We must seek solutions which do not impose an alien linearity on the curved lines of the open countryside. Settlements in wh ich a considerable emphasis is put on the use of solar energy must be laid out very loosely, On the whole, houses should not be much higher than two floors and built at a fairly low density so as not to take the sun away from each other. Low density is also required if we are to take advantage in the village of solar energy in the form of photosynthesis. Vegetable gardens and trees must not be overshadowed by tall houses_ And as new settlements grow in the rural areas, as people move from urban unemployment to rural co·operative villages, the big cities will continue to shrink·as they have done for a generation·to. a more realistic size, to. a sustainable size. They will open up and will thus become morb satisfactory places to·live in .. Any new departure in town and country ,planning must be based on a
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multi·. dimensional approach. Econom ie, . ecological and social criteria, as well as architectural and spacial factors, must be considered. We must get back to natural criteria for human·ttlements··such as proxim ity of food and raw materials. We now have a plain choice: to invest our efforts in a sustainable future and to face the problems that will doubtlessly occur in the process. Or to continue muddling our way along towards an ever greater state of uncertainty. land resettlement is not going to be an easy prQlOess. It implies a challenge to the present syst.em of land"Dwnership·in particular agrj·business and the remnants of feudalland·ownership which are still very much a reality·particularly in Scotland_ It will take time, probably decades_ And it will happen only if people realise that they have a right to land, the basis of plant life and thus human Iife_·out there is every indication that the ,·esent crisis car:not be solved by orthodox means. A new and closer link between food production and human settlements will be essential if a long·term solution is to be found, New villages will be an important part of that solution, Herbert Girardet References
1. See: Food from our own resourt;es, HMSO. London, 1975. 2.See: Michul Allaby, Con W·fud ourselves, Ecologisl Vol.5, No.6, July 1975. 3.Fo·d from our own r·sourCl!sJ op. dt. 4. Kenneth Mellanby in his book. Con BrltoJn Fe·d Itself, London, 1975, estim,Jtes the food import bill for 1975 at about £3,500 million. S.Marx & Engels, Manifesto.of the Communist PortYI p.,7S. 6. Peter Kropotkin. Fields, Foctories and Workshops. Allen & Unwin, london, 1974. p,S3_ 7. Ebenezer Howard, Gorden Cilie$of To·Morrow, London, 1965. p. 127. 8. Colin Ward, Utopia, London, 1974, p.91. 9.Mlchael Allaby, Colin Blythe & Colin Hines, Losing Ground, Friend1 of the Earth, London, 1974, p. 33. 10. The Conserl.1tion Society. Priority for Agriculture, London, 1975. 11. Planning in the United Kingdom. Department of the Emironment, Loridon, 1976, p. 11. 12. Departmenlal enquiry into Statutory Small·holdings, First Report. London, 1966, p. 22. 13.Best & Ward, The GardenControllersy, Department of Agricultural Economics,Wye, College, 1956. 14.See: J·Sholto Douglas and Robert A. de J. Hart, FoteSf Farming, Wiltkins, London, 1976·
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Sholto Douglas The Wood Food·Guide
THE MOST Ulerit WI< facing mankirid today is to find a comprehensi"" sOlution to the problems of hunger" and malnutrition, with all the disease and misery that they invol"", by methods that. do not o_burden stocks of non·renewable. resources, such . Vast. areas of the world which are at present unprOductive or under·productive·savannahs and vilin grasslands, jungles and marshes, barren uplands and rough grazingS, deserts and farmlands abandon..: owing to erosion·could be brought to life and made more hespitable to human settlement. The know·how exists to make abundant contributions to mans food needs by methods combining scientific and technologicaltesearch with tradi·tional husbandry. The tool with the yeatest potentials for feeding men and animals, for regenerating the soil, for restoring water·systems, for controlling floods and droughts, for creating more benevolent micro·<;limates and more comfortable and stimulating living COIlditions for humanity, is the tree. Of the worlds surface, only eight to ien per cent is at present used for food pr(). <luction. Pioneer agriculturists and scientists have demonstrated the feasibility of growing food·yielding trees in the most unlikely locations·rocky mountainsides and deserts with an annual rainfall of on!y two to four inches. With the aid of trees, at least three·quarters of the earth could supply human needs, not only of food but of clothing, fuel, shelter and other basic products. At the same time wild·life could be conserved, pollution d,ecreased, and the beauty of many landscapes enhanced, with consequent moral, spiritual and cultural benefits .. The tree is a tool of almost unlimited versatility ,the use of which does not, in general, involve technical skills beyond the capacity of the average human being. It can be grown in the form of extensive orchards or forests for the production of fruit, nuts and other edible and nonedible crops, or in tile fomi of vast shelterbelts for the centalnment and reciimatlon of deserts. On the other hand, it can also be grown in.small stands by the individual farmer or gardener who wishes to·attain a measure of selfsufficiency. The production of essential foods by conventional methods of land,use is lagging so far behind the needs of the worlds rapidly growu;g population that even the adVanced, industrialised, foodexporting countries are facing shortages of nutritional factors that are vital for allround pOSitive health. The toll of disease In the affluent countries which can be attributed to diet
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deficiencies or toxic elements in food.or the environment is becoming cOFl1parable to the suffering caused by sheer malnuUitioo in the poorer countries. There are comparatively few people on earth whose health and . happiness could not be enhanced if they·had a·cess to a comprehensive, balanced, natural diet consisting largely of fresh products eaten direct from soil or tree, Imagination and boldness will be required to bring into profitable bearing the huge neglected and unexploited regions that now cover some threequarters of the land surface ot" the earth. Apart from the fertile farmlands, the rest of the worlds inhabitable rural areas, considered from the standpoint of their contributions to food. and raw·material supplies, are used at the moment simply for pastoral or low·density ranching activities, c:t:mventional forestry or orcharding. and various enterprises which . contribute only marginally to the nourishment of the human rac"e. In addiHon, , some of these activities are notoriously inefficient In iand·use,outlXJt and operatioo. ., The comprehensive imWer: to the , problem of these delinquent landscipes.·) as a leading farmer and forester graphically described them, is to incorporate them into integrated schemes of land·use, scientifically worked out to accord with soil and climatic factors. One of the most important factors in such schemes should be massive tree·plantings, for trees can provide food and shelter for human beings, livestock and crops and provide timber and other products for building. . fuel and industry; they can heal erosion and control the movements of water in the soil; they can purify polluted atmospheres and generally conserve the environ ment. Many crop·yielding trees and shrubs are currently ignored by farmers, who allow ; the harvests of these plants to go to waste. With the right methods and rational management, these very same plants could, form a vital segrnent"of modern agriculture and industry. At present, agriculture in most parts of the world is virtually exclusively geared to cereal growing and (or livestock rearing by conventional means. Cereals, such as wheat, barley, rye, oats, millet, sorghum, maize and rice, as well as .annuallegumioous crops, such as soya beans, which constitute the staple diet of most of the worlds races, demand annual cultivations which are enormously expensive in labour or machinery, require large inputs of . water and fertil isers, and are extremely vulnerable to the vagaries of the weather. Havest failures, due to drought, flood or . storm, can lead to disaster and even wholesale starvation in the affected areas. Livest()(;k rearing in its traditional form, as still carried on in most
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countries·, dependent on a few strains of grass and clover and often on low·grade pastures Is an extremely unproductive type of food·production, and can also be disastrous when grazing areas are attacked by flood or drought. Through over··grazing, many regions, especially in the Sehel·Sudan zone of1\frica, are degenerating into desert, and the very existence of many nomadic tribes is threatened with extinction. The exposure of bare soil, when pastures are eaten to the roots by flocks and herds and also when land is ploughed for the production of cereals and annual Yeglltables, frequently leads to wind erosion, while rain and sun, especially in tropical areas, leach valuable minerals from the earth. , In the wealthier countries, livestock I production, whether by traditional methods or modern factory·farming. systems. tonstitutes a serious drain on . world st()(;ks of cereals and protein, which are desperately needed for direct " feeding to human beings. A large pro·. portion of the protein incorporated in compound feeding·stuffs for animals in Western countries comes from Asia, Africa and Latin America, where millions of human beings suffer from protein malnutrition. The r()(;keting price of oil and the scarcity of fertilisers, both oil·based and from natural mineral sources, Constitute a further threat to nutritional standards in the poorer countries, especially those that depend largely on cereals for their b:isic foods. The Green Revolution·the breeding of high·yielding, hybrid cereals; especially wheat and rice·which was heralded in.the sixties as foreshadowing the end of the world food problem, has proved a disastrous failure in countries that have found themselves unable to afford the enonnous fertiliser inputs that the new varieties dema.nd. Moreover, the new varieties also.demand vast quantities of water and are therefore extremely vulnerable to the ever·present threat of monsoon ailure In tropical areas .. In the light of the conspicuous failure of conventional agriculture to fulfil the nutritional needs of the worlds rapidly growing pOpulation, far·sighted agro··nomists in many countries are turning their attention to the numerous advantages of tree crops. First and foremost, trees offer the possibility of far higher fQod yields per acre. Whereas livestock rearing in temperate regions produces an average of about two hundredweight of meat per acre and cereal growing an average of about one·and·a·half tons per acre, apple trees can yield at least seven tons per acre, while. leguminous, bean··bearing trees, such as the honey locust, can provide fifteen to twenty tons of cereal·equivalentln tropical areas, and under conditions of m41tiple cropping·where trees are inter·. . planted with vines, vegetables or
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cereals·f.r higher yields can be expected. Some examples of fair aver.ge annual yields obtainable from well man.ged plantations of good·quality trees are shown in the table. Advocates of factory farming or synthetic food manufacture might claim that by such means still higher productivity can be achieved than by tree cropping. But it must be realised that extensive acreages of cereals and protein crops, such as soya beans and linseed, are required to feed battery·hens .nd battery·calves, while the synthetic,proteins with which scientists have been .experimenting demand large.quantities of oil or coal non·renewable resources which are becoming increasingly expensive and are urgently needed for other purposes. MOlOOver ihe nutritional value of the . products of faclorY farming and synt·tiC" manufacture have frequently been . . questioned, whereas the nutritional f.ctorsobtainable from the fruits, nuts, seeds .nd beans of trees are mostly.ofthe highcstqu.lity. AS" m.chine for supply: ing the "necessary factors for sustaining·human··and aniinallife, the tree, with itS dcep,ever·questing roots, seeking oot the riches of the subsoil, and its mass of foliage high hi the air, utilising .tri1ospheric mine·ls and solar radi.tion by the. scientific process of photosynthesis, is far more efficient than .any system devised by man. " .. Another outstanding advantage enjoyed by trees is that they can tolerate conditions in which every other forrn of food·production would be impossible, such as steep, rocky mounuinside •. Both olives and carobs, for example, can be pl.nted in the clefts of rocks where no soil .t·.l1 is app.rent; their fOOts will penetrate deep into the heart of a hillside until they find the nutritional elements they require. . The ability of trees to tap deep underground water·veins is a supreme asset in many of thewonds arid areas. Certain trees have ioot; which can penetrate as much as sever.1 hundred feet into the subsoil and rocky sub·strata in their se.rch for subterrane.n water. Droughtresistant trees such as the almond can survive and f1ourishin apparently water·_ . less conditioris where all other crops f.il. With their Capacity for storing water for long periods, Sl>me species of trees .nd shrubs c.n survive extended droughts th.t . kill .11 other forms of vegetable life. Moreover the water dr.wn.up by tree roots from the depths of the earth c.n alsO benefit d:ie!r·etable neighbO·,·Treepl.ntaiiQO$4!e.ble to r.ise the" entire Wler···• wide .rea, too. bringing the:pbs<J!iltities of conventional agriculture aAd hoi·ticulture to regions, .. where such actiliitles h.d been considered" out of the questioil: .. The "(ater t.ike{ltJp by trees from the
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subsoil is transpired into the atmosphere and falls as rain. The ecologist with . Richard 51 B.rb·B.kers Sahara University Expedition discovered th.t single eucalyptus tree forty feet high transpired eighty gallons of w.ter a d.y. Tree plantations also attract rain clouds .nd cause them to shed their loads, SO that extensive tree growing can ma.ke substantial contribution to the .nnu.1 r.infall of a drought·ridden rea. Trees require far less in the way of elabor.te irrigation schemes than do cereals and reduce the necessity for such schemes in neighbouring crops. Trees can be found which will toler.te both the r.rified .ir of great heights and the polluted atmosphere of industri.l cities. In recent years,.appleorchards have been establis!>ed at heights of over 12,000 feet inTibet, while j. Russell Smiih, the Americanauthori·y on tree crops, reported th.t; in the early yea" of this century, a honey locust h.d been seen be.ring its Iong pods in foggy London. Better than any other crop, trees could supply the younger generajions dem.nd for .. If·sufficiency. Many suburb.n .reas . . . If·e full tree·growlng pot·ntl.htles of pnvate gardens were explOited . . These facts··gges·an answerlo t!e··.Il·x " , .... ,·. .··world food croslS whICh c.n be .pphed to every part of the earth where.ueeswill grow and .nimals exist; it is cap.ble of oper.tion on the smallest or the largest·scale; it is far less demanding in energy, .. machinery and irrig.tion th." con·venticir1al agriculture, and far from I : damagi.ng the environment, it conserves·:and improves both soil·nd water·resources and jlurifies. the atmosphere .. Thi>·i·the creJtion.of balaaced, . ecologiCal pl.nt·.nd·inlmal communities . scientifically .dapted ((llce.1 ctim.tic .nd soil conditions, and with species c.refully·selected for their favour.ble rel.tionships "with each other. In the 1930s Toyohiko Kagawa,the·Japanese Christian evangelist, trade union leader, sociologist, psychologist .nd·novelist·a man of extraordinary versatility and deep compassion for human suffering who will surely come to be recognised as one of the outstanding personalities of the twentieth century became concerned about the plight of Japanese hill farmers whose soil had been eroded as a result of de·forest·tion. Having read J _ Russell Smiths book Tree Crops·A Permanent Agriculture, Kagawa recognised the necessity. for restoring tree cover, and, as conservation with ordinary trees does not yield early cash returns, he suggested the extensive planting of walnuts, the nuts to be used for the feeding of pigs, which could be _ sold as. a source of cash income·for the farmers. Kagawas ideas were carried out on an extensive scale and the system became known as forest farming or three·dimensional forestry, the three dimensions bemg conservation, tree
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crops. and livestock. Following the war Kagawas work began to arouse interest outside japan, and in 1956·7 the concept of three·dimensional forestry was included in an experimental scheme for developing the Semi·arid area of the middle Limpopo valley in South Africa, _ . The general pattern of threedimensional forestry is to have large belts or blocks of economic trees interspersed with narrower grazing strips of grasses or other herbage along which move herds of livestock, fed from the woodlands, and producing meat, milk, eggs, wool and other items. The system forms a natural biological cycle, into which man fits perfectly: he can eat the food harvested from the trees and the flesh or produce of the forest·fed livestock, or sell them_ The manure of the animals is returned·to the soil and encourages healthy and vigorous growth of plants, thus reducing the need for bought·in fertilisers to a minimum. Three·dimens·ional forestry offers more than a system for satisfying mans basic needs of food; fuel and other essentials, It offets nothing less than a new way of life, which could provide rewarding and purposeful occupations for large populations, The drift of rural dwellers to the towns is fostering excessive urban __ expansion in many parts of the world, and leading to the mushrooming of shanty towns with their deplorable living conditions. By offering new schemes of land development the influx into the cities could be checked, and new, vital rural civilisations and cultures created. People could return to the countryside to partiCipate in agri·silvicultural activities which could provide profitable and meaningful occupations for thousands of workless individuals and families. Forest farming would provide many highly . skilled jobs which could give the ambitious, technically·minded young men and women of today status and satisfaction at least equivalent to any available to the industrial worker, and carried out in far more pleasant and healthy surroundings. James Sholto Douglas This article is an edited extract from the excellent Forest Farming by J. Sholto Douglas and Robert A. de J. Hart. published recently by Watkins Publishing, 45 Lower Belgrave St.. London SW1W OlT, in association with Watkins Bookshop, 21 Cecil Court. Charing Cross Road, London WC2N 4HB, price £3.85.

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Ward Do·It·Yourself New Town
THE NEW TOWNS movement in Britain·was sp .... ked off·t the tum of the century by Ebenezer Howards book Garden Cities of TomorroW and buill into post·war planning legislation and policy. I should like to look al the New Towns m""ement through ",,"rchist spectacle., defining anarchi.m as the social philosophy of a non·go.ernmental society. The philosopher Martin BUber begin. hi. essay Society and the Statl1 with an observation from the sociologist Robert Maciver that "to identify the social with the political i. to be guilty of the g1ossest of all confusions, which completely bars any understanding of either sOCiety or the state.1I The political principle,for Suber, is characterised by·power, authority, hierarchy, dominion. The social principle, on the other hand, is scen wherever men link themselves in an association based on a common need . or a common interest The anarc·ist Peter Kropotkin believed that "The State OfUnisation, having" been the force to .. which the minorities ftSOrted for establishing and organising their power over the masses, .cannot be the force which will serve to destroy these privileges," and declared that "the economic,and political liberation of man will have to create new forms for its "expression in life, instead of those established by the State." He thought it self·evident that "(his new form will have to be more popular; more decentralised, and nearer to the folk·mote self·governm·nt than representative government can ever be." Kropotkins Fields, Factories anri Worllshops (to my mind a book full of significanc·e for our contemporary dilemmas) . came out at the·same time as HowardsTomorrow; A.Peaceful Path to Real . Reform, When Howards book Was reissu·d under its more familiar title of Gorden Cities of Tomorrow/and·when Kropotkins book was re·issued in an enlarged edition, each paid tribute to the others work. When Thomas Adams, (he first secretary of the Garden Cities. Association, and later the first secretaryof the Town Planning In"stitute, wrote his book Gorden City rind Agriculture in 1905, he based it on Kropotkins work. There were in fact innumerable crosscurrents between the ideologists of planning and (he ideologists of anarchism at"that time. There are similar cross·influences with Raymond Unwin, lewis .. Mumford, right down to the astounding book Communitas by Paul and Percival·Goodman, which after its publication by .: the University of Chicago in 1947; led·a kind of underground existence until its re·appearance asa paperback in the 60s. It is on sale In thiS country
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(Wildwood·House, 90p) and I would recommen<l it to you as the most significant book in our field since Howards. When the First Garden City Limited was started, it was not conceived as a fore··runner of action by the governmental I .·machine, it was conceived as the forerunnerof what F.j. Osborn called, sum·marising Howard, "progressive experimentation in new fonTis of social enterprise". An ordinary company in its structure, it had the important feature of dividend limitation and the famous provision that any balance of profit was to be devoted "to the benefit directly or indirectly of the town or·its inhabitants".·When Howard found that his workingmodel failed to inspire others, he embarked at 69 on his second garden·city; having succeeded in borrowing less th""one·te.nth of the purchase price of the site;Staggering foolh .... diness. Can you imagine such an enterprise today? We know from the recollections of people like C.B. Purdom and Frederic Osborn,and from the anecdotes of early residents, that there was a kind of glamour and gaiety and a sense of high adventure in the pioneering of Letch·worth andWelwyn·a sense that was absent from the early days of the postwar New Towns. At what stage in the evolu·tio!lof our administrative ideology did "O;·go wrong? Some people would say it·was,back in the thirties when the Labour PiIilY opted for the vast public corpora··titid·.. s the vehicle for social enterpsise. One of the earliest Fabian Tracts declared in 1886 that" English Socialism is not yet Anarchist or Collectivist, not yet defined enough in point of policy to be classified. There is a ma .. of Socialistic feeling not yet conscious of itself as Socialism. But when the unconscious SociaJists of England discover their position, they also will probably fall into two parties: a Collectivist party supporting a strong central administration and a counterbalancing Anarchist party defending indi vidual initiative against the administration."Well the Fabians rapidly found which side of the watershed was, theirs, and the Labour Party long ago : finally commi(ted itself to that inter·. . pretation of socialism which identified it with the unlimited increase of the States ; power and activity through its chosen . form: the giant managerially·controlled . public corporation_ . Now in putting forward the notion of 1 a do·it·yourself New Town, I am not ] saying that, in our kind of society. the I PUblic.aUthorities have no role. They have 1.1 an indispensable role, which for short wOe .··can call site and services. I{you are familiar with the phrase it is because you have been watching the unfolding drama . of housing in the cities of the Third World. English architects like John Turner and Pat Crooke who have worked for
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years in the shanty·towns of Latin America see them as something quite different from the official view and that of the rich visitor which is as a breedingground of crime, disease, social and family disorganisation. They,see them as a triumph of self·help and mutual aid among people who would gain nothin, fi:om the usual expensive official hOUSIng programme. They point out that what begins as a squatter settlement can become throuKh.i.ts p:·vn.efforts in fifteen years a fully·functioning community of adequate, properly serviced households. In their chapter contributed to the recent book .The Exploding Cities they contrast two examples of evolving dweller·controlled housing, one in Barcelona and one in Dar·es·Salaam and . conclude: "These two superficially different cases shoW how ordinary people use resources and opportunitie, available to them wit!JJmagination and initiative·.when they have access to the necessary resources, and when they are free to act for themselves. Anyone who can see beyond the surface differences between the many forms of dwelling places people build for themselves is bound to be struck by the often astonishing , economy of housing built and managed locally, or from the bottom up, in com·parison with top·down, mass housing, supplied bylarge organisations and central agencies. Contrary to what we have been brought up to believe, where labour is an economys chief asset, largescale production actually reduces productivity in low·income housing. The assumed economies of scale are obtained at the expense of reduced access to resources Which local owners and builders would otherwise use themselves, arid of the inhibition of personal·. and community initiative." If you have a lingering belief that thisis simply romanticising other peoples poverty, I ought to remind you that the poor of a poor country in an inefficiently administered.city like Lima have not been deprived of the last shred of personal autonomy and human dignity like the poor of a rich and competently administered city like London. ,They ..... e not trapped in the culture of poverty. Just imagine that we were a poor. countrv. Suppose Dockland were Dar ..... Salaam, or Liverpool were Lusaka, and we adopted the policy of aided squatting which in some Third World cities ha replaced the pointless and wicked govern·, mental persecution of squatters. Following the advice of people like Tumer and Crooke, the World Bank is ceasing to aid grandiose housing project,·though many governments are refusing to take this advice: they wouldrather Pil¥ large . fees to Western planning consultants, for they cannot believe that what poor people do for them,elves can be right. The World Bank is now sponsoring ten site and
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services programmes around the world .. Now suppose we applied such a policy to some of the derelict inner city districts, in the man·made wastelands. Provide roads and services and a service core: . kitchen sink, bath, we and ring·main connection. Put up some party walls (to, overcome the fire·risk objection) and you will have long queues of families anxious to build the rest of the house for themselves, or to employ one of our vast number of unemployed building workers to help, or to get their brother·in·law or some moonlighting tradesman or the COmmunity Industry to help, within the party walls. Such a carnival of con·stfuction would have important spilHlff, in other braDches of the 5OCi·problems industry: ad hOI; jobs and training for unemployed teenagers, turning the local vandals into builders, and the children into back·yard horticulturalist5. Why, it would be Iil(e thoSe golden days at Letchworth! We already have experience of a do·it·yourself New Town on·siteand·services principle. I am referring to Pilsea and uindOl1, the precursor of Basildon New Town. If you dont know the Basildon epic let me re·tell it as briefly as I can: The building of the London·TilburySouthend Railway in 1888 coincided with a period of agricultural depression, and several farmers around Pitsea.and uindon in Essex sold to an astute land agency which divided the land into plots for sale. They.advertised the.se as holiday or retirement retreats and organised excursion trains from West Ham ond East Ham at the London end of the line with great boozy jaunts to the country (large hotels were built at the sUtions), and in the course of the outings plots of land were auctioned. In the period upto the end of the·nineteen·thirties other agents, or the" farmers themselves, sold plots in the area, sometimes for as little as £3 for a 20·foot frontage. A lot of ex·servicemen, dream ing of a good life on a place of their own sank their gratuities after the First World War in small·holdings or in chicken farming. Most of them soon failed: they lost their money but they had some kind of cabin on the site, and the return fare from I:aindon to Fenchurch Street was only ls 2d in 1930. The kind of structures people built ranaed from the typical intel/war speculative builders detached house or bungalow, to "converted buses or railway coaches, with i. range of army h"ts, beach huts and every kind of timber·framell·hed, shack or shanty.·· During the second world war, with very heavy bomb ing in East London,·specially the docklOnd boroughs of East Ham and West Ham, many families evacuated them·selves or were bombed out, and moved in permanently to whatever foothold they had in the Pitsea, Laindon and
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Vange districts, with the result that at the end of the war the area had a seitled population of 25,000. There were some 8,500 existing dwellings, over 6,000 of them unsewered. There were 75 miles of grass track roads; mains water was in burtt·up areas only, with ,Undpipes in the roads elsewhere. There wa, no surface water drainage , apart from ditches and old agricultural drains. Only flfty per cent of dwellings had main, electricity. There were about 1,300 acre, of complOtely waste land of which 50 per cent had no known owner. The average density was 6 persons to the acre. Of the 8,500 dwellings, 2,000 were of brick and tile construction to Housing Act sUndards, 1,000 were of light construction to the same standard, 5,000 were chalets and shacks and 500 were loruy ..,. wne MCOOO"norlc VY8f(" described as derelict, thou8h probably occupied. The average rateable value was £5. " In 1946 the New Towns Act was passed and various places were designated by the government as sites for New Towns. In , many cases there was intense local opposition, not only from residents and landowners but also from the focal authoritie.,Bu,t in the case of Basildon, theMiniter wa, petitiDned by the Essex County COuncil and by the local council to designate the area as a New Town. The argument was that there was no other way of financing the infra·structure of essential municipal servioes. Let us zoom in on one particular street in the Lalndon end of Basildon. It probably has a greater variety of housing types than any street in Briuin. It sUrIs on the right with two late Victorian vinas·a sawn·off bit of terrace housing stuck there hopefully when the railway was first built. On theleft is a deuched house with a porch embellished with Doric wooden columns, like something in the Deep South of the United SUtes. Then there are some privately·bµi1t houses of the, 1960s, and next a wooden cabin wiihan old lady leaning over the gate··a First World War army hut which grew. On the other side of the road is some neat , Development Corporation Housing: blue brick, concrete tile hanging and white trim. Here is a characteristic impro.ved shanty with imitation stone quoins formed in,cement rendering at the corners of the pebbledash. Most of the old houses have some feature in the garden exempli·. fving the passion to create and embellish. This one has a fo·ntain, working. This one h ... a windmill about five feet high painted black and white like the timber and asbestos house it adjoins. The sails are turning. Heres one with a pond full of goldfish. And now we see an immaculate vegetable garden with an old gentleman hoeing his onions. He was a leatheryworker from Kennington, who bought tHe place 43 years ago for week·ends and then retired down here. No, he was!"!! the
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first .occupier, who was·a carpenter from Calming Town who bought three 2D·foot plots for £18 in 1916, giving a site 60ft by 140ft In the post·1918 period when, according to Mr Syrett,the present owner, the banks were changing their interiors from mahogany to oak. the carpenter brought down bits and pieces of joinery from Fenchurch Street and built his dream bungalow. After Mr Syrett had bought it it was burnt down except for the present kitchen and Mr Syrett himself built the present timber·framed house. Later he had it rendered. and although he is now 85, he has been making·improvements ever since. I showed him a description of the area as a former vastlpastoral slum. He , denied this of course, remarking that . most people came down here preci·ly to get away from the slums. But what was it like before the road was made up? Well, you had to order your coal in the summer as the lorry could never get down the roid in wintertime. But there was a pave·ment. "People used to get together with their neighbours to buy cement and sand to make the pavement all the way along t·e road: Street lighting? No, there was none. "Old Granny Chapple used to take a hurricane lamp when whe went to the Radiant Cinema in Laindon." Transport? "Well, a character called Old Tom used to run a bus from Laindon Station to tbe Fortune of War public house. And there were still horses and carts down here in those days. They used to hold steeplechases on the hill where the caravan site is now." . Mr. and Mrs: Syretts house is immaculate·large rooms with all the attributes of suburban comfort. The house was connected lathe sewer and electricity mains h, the 405 and got gas 15 years ago. The Urban district council made up the road under the Private Street Works Act, charging £60 in road charges. The road was recently made up again to a higher standard by the Development Corporation, The rates are £12 a half year, "and as old age pcmioners they got a rate rebate. . , They live happily within their pension, they assured me, No rent to pay, some fruit and vegetables fram the garden and . the greenhouse. It is a matter of pride for them that they are not obliged to apply for supplementary benefits which they regard as scrounging. It is quite obvious thai Mr. Syretts real investment fDr his old age was this one·time substandard bungalow which today has all the Same amenities and conveniences as the homes of his neighbours. The truth of this can be seen if you look in the estate agents windows in Pitsea, where houses with the same kind of origin are advertised at prices similar to those asked for the spec. builders houses of the same period.
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The significant thing is that their original . owners and 6uilders would never have qualified as building society mortgagees in th·inter·war years, any more than people with equivalent incomes would today. The integration of shcksville into new development has been outstandingly successful in Basildon but the same up·grading of dwellings and improvement in facilities happens in the Course of time anywhere.,.. further down the line at Canvey Island for example·without ben.fit of New Town finance. What the New Town mechanism has done of course f·to draw the sporadic settle·merit together into an Urban entity and provide non·commuting jobs through the planned introduction of industry. Pit .. a and ,Lairidon could be called do·it·yourself New Towns, later legitimised by official action. ... But the cheap, substandard unfinished kind of development that gives the under·privileged a place of their own has ceased to be available, In the 19395, aesthetic critics deplored this kind of development" as bungaloid growth·and so on·though the critics themselves had a great deal more freedom of manoeuvre in buying themselves a place in the sun. It is interesting that Sir Patrick Abercrombie in the Greater London Plan of 1944 said" OIlt is possible to point with horror to the jumble of shacks and bungalows on the Laindon Hills and, Pit"a, This is a narrow·minded appreciation of what w ... as genuinea·desire ... created the group of lovely gardens and houses at Frensham and Bramshott." This may be obvious today, but it w ... unusually perceptive in the climate of opinion then_·What in fact those Pitsea·Laindon dwellers had w ... the ability to turn their labour into capital over time, just like the Latin American squatters. The poof in the third world cities·with some obvious exceptions·have a freedom that the poor in the rich world cities have lost: three freedoms, in John Turners words: "the freedom of community selfselection; the freedom to budget ones own resources and the freedom to Shape ones own environment".·ln the rich, world the choices have been preempted by the power of the state, with its comprehensive law·enforcement agencies and its institutionalised welfare agencies. In the rich world, as ijabraken puts it, <lman no longer houses himself: he is housed." You might observe of course that some of the .New Town and developing towns have .J more than most local authorities hitve :..·provided sites and encouragement to self·build housing societies. But a self·build housing association has to provid·a fully·finished product right from the start, otherwise no consent under the building regulations, no planning consent,
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, no loan. No·one takes into account the growth and improvement and enlargement orthe dwelling over time, so that people can invest out of income and out of their own, time, in the structure. Now when Howard wrote Go;den Cities of Tomorrow, the reason why it appealed to so many people was that the period was . receptive. This was the period of Kropotkin, Fields, Factories and Work, shops, of BlatchfordsMerrie England" and of H,G. WellssAnticipations. Certain ideas wcrc in the air. Now we are once again in a period with a huge range of ideas in the air, especially among. the young·There·is the enormous interest in alternative technology. There is, for obvious reasons, a sudden burst of interest in domestic food prod uction, and there is an enormous new interest in alternative forms of housing, again for obvious reasons: there are vast numbers of people whose faces or lifestyles dont lit in either the Director of Housings office or the Building Society office, and who are consequently victims of the crude duopoly of housing which, without intending to, we haye created. There are large numbers of people interested in alternative ways of making a living: looking for labour·intensive low·capital industries, because capital·intensive industries have failed to provide them with an income. A Community Land Trust was set up last year:·and though it has no connection with the Act of a similar name, the Act may be the .ssentW prerequisite in providing land for the site·arid·services do·it·yourself New Town. And a New Villages Association was set up recently. I ani continually amazed by the growth of interest in alternative energy sources, especially since I was writing on the themes of solar power and wind power exploitation in the anarchist paper Freedom twenty years ago. Nobody at aM seemed to be interested in those days. Last month a county librarian identified this as one of the areas in which there was the largest demand for books last year. Hugh Sharman, who runs Conservation Tools and Technology, says they get hundreds of enquiries every week. The·National Centre for Alternative Technology at Pantperthog in Wales was opened to the public in July 1975 and by the end of last year had had more than 15,000 visitors. One of the essentials of a do·ityourself New Town would be a relaxation of building regulations to make it possible for people to experiment in alternative ways of building and servicing houses, and in permitting a dwelling to be occupied in a most..rudimentary condition for gradual completion. This is virtually impossible at the moment: Graham Caine and the Street Farmers, for example, had to dismantle their experimental house at Eltharn last October
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because their temporary planning permission expired .. I ought to say something about the density of dwellings. Some advocates of more intelligent land·use policies advocate high densities rath.er than what they think of as suburban sprawl, in order to conserve those precious acres of agricultural land. A worthy motive but a wrong con·dusion. The agricultural ind ustry is interested in maximum. productivity per man. But with Iimi.ted land we ought to be interested in maximum productivity per acre. Sir Frederic Osborn always argued that the prod uce of the ordinary domestic garden, even though a small area of gardens is devoted to food production, more than. equalled in value the prOlluce of the land lost to commercial food production. Surveys conducted by the government and by university depart·ments·in the 1950s proved him right. Some people will remember tlie enormous contribution made to the nations food supply by dome,tic gardens and allot·ments during the war years. (The facts of the argument were set out by Robin Best and J.T. Ward In the Wye College pamphlet The Garden Controversy in 1956). I would simply say that low·density housing Is the best way of con·serving land. Perhaps I can make the point more forcibly by going one stage further than the do·it·yourself New Town to John Seymours views on self·sufficiency. He Says in the new edition of his book The Fat of the Land: "There is a man I know of who farms ten ihousand acres with three·men (and the use of some contractors). Of course he can only grow one crop·barley, and of course his production per acre is very low·and his consumption of imported fertiliser very hish. He bums all his straw, puts no humus.on the factiol) of looking over a vast treeless, hedgeless prairie of indifferent barley but he could get out of his car for a change and wander through a seem·. ingly huge area of diverse countryside, orchards, young tree plantations; a myriad small plots of larid growing·a multiplicity of different crops, farm animals galore, and hundreds of happy arid healthy children. Even the agri·cultural economist has convinced him·self of one thing. He will tell you (if he is any good) that land farm.ed in big units has a low production of food per acre but a high production of food per man·hour, and that land farmed in small units has the opposite·a very poor production per man·hour but a high production per acre. He will then say that in a competitive world we must go for high production per man·hour and not per acre. I would disagree with him. And so would I, and though I am arguing for an experimental town rather than an experiment in land settlement, his argument holds good. Self·sufficiency is not the aim, but an opportunity for. .people to work in
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small·scale horticulture as well as in small·scale industry is. It may hove to happen. There may be no other way of rescuing inner Liverpool. There may be no other way of rescu ing some of the Development Corporations faced with a diminishing rate of growth. Perhaps Milton Keynes is destined to become an agrl·<:ity. a dispersed city of intensive horticulturalists. I·should be possible to operate some kind of usufrut, some kind of leasehold with safeguards against purely cynical exploitation, which would enable people to house themselves and provide themselves with a means of livelihood, while not drainingimmense sums from central or local government. A lot of people in the town·making business·chairmen, general managers, and al( their hierarchy·h.ve had a marvellous and fulfilling time, wheeler. dealing their babies into maturity. They have been the creators, the producers. The residents, the citizens, have been the consumers, the recipients of all that planning. architecture and housing·not to mention the jobs in the missHe factoiy. Now we are twenty·five years or more older, wiser and humbler. A new genera·tion is turning upside down all those cherished shibboleths about planning, architecture and housing, not to mention the ones about jobs. We have to change the role of the citizens from recipients to participants, so that they too have an active part to play in the great game of town building. What was it that old Ben Howard said to young Frederic Osborn? "My dear fellow, if you wait for the government to act, youll be as old as Methuselah before they start. The only way to get anything done is to do it yourself.” Colin Ward

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Watterson and Liddell Sunshine on Coronation Street
OVER THE PAST two years a study has b·carded out at Hull School of Archi·tecture to assess the level of self·sufficiency·mainly in Energy and Food·that could be achieved in ordinary urban housing built at the standard density used by Hull Corporation. This density, 12 to 15 houses per acre, has turned out to be significant on a number of counts. According to survey information it is th.e approx·imate density at whichpeople opt to grow vegetables rather than flowers. It is a density which allows vegetable self·sufficiency, assuming an average occupancy of 3 persons per house. And it is a density at which two·storey housing can have enough South Facing frontage at a satisfactory distance from the next terrace (for both social and·Iar purposes) in order to collect significant amounts of ambient energy for spai" and water heating. In short, it is a density which could give upwards of 30% food and 60% energy self·sufficiency. Food in the City Allotments The national demand for allotments has risen from a waiting list of 6,000 in 1972 to 37,000 in 1973 and 57,000 in 1974. One might reasonably assume that this is due to such factors as dissatis·faction with food quality, increase in leisure time and rising prices. It is also possible that the imminent removal of government subsidies oo·a number of foodstuffs will stimulate peoples interest·in alternative sources of food, just as the OPEC price rises have increaled their interest in alternative sources of energy. In any case it is worth noting that most farm produce undergoes a 100% price increase between leaving the farm gate and reaching the consumer. There are a number of ways in which this demand for self·growing could be catered for. Railway cuttings and verges are already being slowly colonised; but there is also a massive amount of vacant or derelict land in urban areas, where, demand is h ignest: one conservative estimate puts tnis at 135,000 acres. In London alone there are 20,000 acres; and even allowing a 50% reduction for . unavailability and a 50% reduction of the remainder due to unsuitability for cultivation, there would still be enough land for 160,000 standard size allotments (the current waiting list is 9,000). Garden Rehabilitation Another way of increasing lurban photosynthesis is to extend the recent
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trends towards rehabilitation of old housing.·A lot of areas in Hull in which the housing density was originally two or three times that dictated by current housing policy have been heaVily depopulated as people have voted with their feet, faced with the threat Qf demolition within the next few years. Because of this depopulation, these areas could cope relatively easily with the removaJ of , every second row of terraces·or at least every third row. The resultant space would allow for sufficient garden to achieve at least self·sufficiency in vegetab les. New Gardens, New Housing Figure 1 shows the site layout of our. design proposal for a new community on a.derelict piece of land adjacent to the main Trunk Road into Hull: the site is five minutes walk from the city centre: The area of land required for growing an annual supply of vegetables for a . normal healthy diet, supplemented by im·ported food, for an average 3 person household is 195m. This represents 57% of a household plot in a 12 dwelling/acre scheme. 12 houses would occupy a further 20% of the area, leaving the remaining 23% for circulation, ancillary buildings, recreation areasJ flower gardens, and so on .. Given this set of statistically·<lerived ground rules for apportioning plots there is a need for a further set of constraints which relate to evcryones rights of sun·, light After investigating solar geometry at the Hull latitude we evolved an optimum North·South separation distance between dwellings of 24 metres (this al)o happens to be the limit of inter·personal visual recognition). Two others factors innuenced our ultimate choice of the terrace form, The first was traditional: nearly the whole of Hull (like a number of cities) is terrace housing. The second was environmental: a terrace form creates a small external wall area and, unlike a courtyard grouping, each household receives approximately the same amount of sunlight.. We made one major compromise with complete energy efficiency: the proposed houses were staggered to help create some degree of group territorial space. How the Scheme would Evolve It is hoped that a viable community could evolve from little more than these fairly limiting constraints. But this solution is not seen as a universal one and the scheme therefore should preferably be set up in the form of a self·build/selfgrow housing co·operative which people could opt into or out of at will. If it were a counoil scheme it would need safeguards against people being pressurised to join the community. It is, in fact, quite important to the success of the project that those joining it would be sym
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pathetic with of wililng to learn about the creation and maintenance of gardens and buildings in a context such as this. Figures 1 and 2 show each dwelling with a garden facing South connected to the street beyond, and a small flower garden and main access facing onto a similar communal street to the North. This creates a forma!entrance (for the milkman, postman, etc.) to the North, and potential for informal communication (neighbours chatting, etc.) to the South. The large amount of available garden space is chieny made possible by the restriction in the areas given to roads and parking (though as a sop to the o current situation. 60% car parkin·is shown on the periphery of the site twice the present actual ownership ofthe local population). Essential vehicles such as ambulances, fire..engines and removal vans would gain access along the East·West pedestrian routes. The remainder of the street should evolve into play areas, front gardens, sitting areas, toddler pools, sand·pits, and so on. This is also the space in which lean·to workshops and stores couid eaSily be erected·the area would be parli·ularlV useful for. vegetable storage as it is on the cool side of the Buildings;The zone is seen as developing into a very creative frollt door area, in complete contrast to the almost inevitably comparative monotony of the glazed areas to the South. The only initial definition pf the garden boundaries would be by theirbeing 5llOmm lower than the street level; households could combine or separate at will in order to achieve optimum productive areas of crops·the pr.ie;e paid for th is would be the extent of privacy lost . Communal plots are also proposed in certain areas of the site. These would be ideal for such .things as wheat, potato, or fruit production,.a limited amount of livestock·or a sta.nd·rd crop rotation. Under skilled management the 195m standard plot has the potential to support a lot more than 3 people. Communal and Ancillary Buildings As a catalyst for the community there . would be a focal point in the estate. This would have facilities for a number of activities, and include provision for market stalls for selling produce, a clubroom, youth club, creche, a restaurant supplying refreshmentHnd selling natural foods, and an office where allvice could be obtained on, amongst other things, the cultivation"f vegetables. Important items. such as seeds and bulbs could be bought in bulk and redistributed internally. There could be a seed·cutting·sprout bank where varieties of tbese items could be .. ved, stored and sold for the next growing season. Here all k.inds of meetings and talks could be held on maners including the running of the estate. A number of shops and
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workshops would be dotted around the site. Work is defined in such a way that a number of the residents could redirect their skills and energy towards working for the community itself. The workshops would be used primarily to supply the needs of . the community, and duri"g the con·. struction of the dwellings would play a particularly important role. As the estate developed, they could be used for repair, maintenance, addition and amendment, and later would include a number of non·building activities. Any hardware necessary for the estate could be manufactured by the workshop, including for elr(ample nails, screws, and hinges and the main building material: sand·sulphur blocks. Encouraging links between lwork and lhome for as many of the community as possible is seen.U one of the main goals of the project. Dwelling Construction and Technology The design of the dwellings themselves is geared towards self·building. The walls would be a double leaf of interlocking sand·sulphur blocks onto a raft foundation; the cavity would be insulated; and the roof and intermediate floors wou·!d be of standard timber construction. The sand/sulphur biocks could be easi Iy made in a variety of colours in moulds in the workshops. The sulphur could be purchased from oil·refineries who prace.55 it from Sulphur Dioxide wastes; there are a number of refineries along the Humber and it would be a simple matter to transport the raw material in (low energy·consuming) boats. Each dwelling wo.uld incorporate a leanto greenhouse on the,South·facing wall which would heat up the open interior by solar radiation. In such a situation the walls and floor absorb the warmth, and at night well·insulated ,hutters between the greenhouse and interior prevent heat loss·and the warmth is re·emitted into the inner rooms.. If the suns heat becomes. excessive the!Nre external blinds stretching between the glazing bars which reduce the intensity by about 90% The IivinS room, dining room and bedrooms would open directly into the greenhouse; the bedrooms would also have exiernal shutters. . . A 25 m2·active solar collector is pro·posed for a typical roof, The system includes an indirect anti·freeze circuit using a copper flat plate and pipe system, The heated water is fed through heatexchanger coils in two thermal storage tanks situated. in the bathroom,·These have,a total capacity of 360 litres, The top tank has a conventional immersion heater as emergency boost 3fld can operate independently of the lower·in cooler weather, The 90W pump is controlled by external sensors_ . The system also includes water·conserv··ing devices installed throughput the .house; all f;tments
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have spray taps; the W.e. handbasin is incorporated as a part of the cistern, and basin w.Jlter is used to flush that toilet In addition the first floor waste water flushes_the ground f100t W.C, and a stand·up/sit·down showe, is used instead of a bath. Rainwater is collected off the r·ofs to water the plants; waste sewerage is taken by the existing sewer and redirected to a central methane plant w_hich supplies gas to generate power for a large workshop. Electricity ;s generated by Darrieus windgenerators. Future Plans This project has two major aims. The first is to establish what is the optimum degree of food and energy self·sufficiency for Hull. The second is to make this feasible for any·committed urban families and groups in the context of today. We are currently. in the process of getting political and financial backing and will produce publications from time to .time to keep anyone interested up to date with progress. CRve Watterson and Howard Liddell

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Lifespan Freedom Rules·OK?
Lifespan is the name of a communty founded last year in a grouup of redundant railwaymens cottages high on the moors abQve Sheffield. Some of the communards are past students of Summerhill, A.S. Neills school, and they are trying to put into practice his ideas on freedom. One of them describes the communitys successes and failures so far, .OUR AIM is 10 creale a lifeslyle con·ducive to the individuals emotional and polilicalliberalion. We take the small al1tonomous community to be the basis of a re·hu.manised society. In our village we have a degree of freedom from.the constraints imposed by the petrified national social order. Out of this freedom a spontaneous social covenant has arisen that weaves together individual personal traits. The central idea underlying our lifestyle is the need for balance. This is not to be confused with compromise: balance can support irreconcilable opposites without compromisirig them. The houses We are lucky to have acquired nineteen houses, more than enough for our needs. This has made it possible for us to include a variety of rooms: library, sitting·room, dining·room, workshop, studio and kitchen. We designed the rooms as we . went along, mind·in·hand. This method of working has naturally upset" the local council, but by a mixture of not taking them too seriously J.nd throwing back at them what they see as alternative .gobbledygook (e.g. communal living) we have managed to keep them at arms length. They have no sanctioned categories to slot communes into and they persist in classifying us as separate house·holds, telling U5 we Clont have this or that amenity. So we have taken to building . first and submitting plans later, showing them an example of a new form of life. that may come in handy one day. We have some disagreements but at bottom I think they like us, we make a change. And·he conflict with. them can become one more vista through the looking glass of reflected bureaucracy, . The land We have three acres of land but only two can be cultivated. As. yet most of it is. unused as it needsdraining. Subject to the general COnsensus of what main crops are to be.. planted and where, anyone can plant their favoured crop. Some plant by the cycle of the moon, some at the appropriate time of the year and some on sunny days. Twelve hundred feet up on the windy Yorkshire moors surrounded by cattle farmers who would never dream . of
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growing anything, we are getting surprisingly good yields. Three goats, one due to krid in the spring, roam the ground of a disused chapel far from the cabbage patch; and there are thirty chickens bought from a batte .... farmer in the belief that it would be good to liberate Ihem. A silly iiea this, for the farmer just replaced them and their, natural instinct to reproduce (become broody) seems to have been bred out of them. Alternative technology We arc building a weir across the stream through our land to make a pond for fish farming. Later we aim to add on a turbine generator. Also in the making is a wind·mill·to power a water pump for the heating system for the studio cum work·shop we are building on to one of the houses. Until this is finished the other AT projects we have in mind must wait. In the meantime, recycling materials and constructing tools and houses, we have learnt to control small·scale technology, to build to last and to develoJ>·on·thespot appropriate technology (or spQtnique). Money We are just about solvent. We earn··money by: building work; catering; design and selling of AT and crafts; giving talks and holding courses at the village. The will to find another way is kept afresh by tedium of some of this paid work, and by the hostel atmosphere it creates when people return from an outside job and try to pick up the threads again. If we can find a suitable building we would like to open a food and craft shop, a free school, a theatre, and a public tool centre, We would also like to put on . alternative careers courses. There is a fundamental tension which we must all learn to recogn ise between the need to express ourselves freely and the need to pay the bills. A commun ity in which essential tools such as cars and domestic appliances (and money) are pooled for all to use is no panacea for the ill effeclS of money but it does enable us to minimise the crushing burden of our own greed. Work The skllls required for a selfreliantlife are many and varied. Most of us were vcry ignorant when we came, but in the short time we have been here we have all learnt a number of skills·the kids included. The work is done by spontaneous ad hoc working groups for specific projects which dissolve back into the community when their task is done. The natural leader of one group often takes on an apprentic·role on another project. Thus everyone has experience of leading and following and this acceptance of leading and following does not impair the general equality or democracy of the
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village. Community equality is also sustained. by our system of holding all money in a Common pool from which each can take according to their needs. We hold thai the commonwealth of Lifespan is a collective , one in which it is impossibre to measur"c the contribution of any individual. Meetings are held, on the average, every two weeks unless there is nothing to meet about. They act as a confluence where information too boring for any other time is exchanged and as a democratic . means of resolving disputes that are beller . settled with everyone present. Meals are our daily communion; alas, a rota for cooking and cleaning.has to be wor·ed out about once a week. We have tried An"lchism in the kitchen but with twenty or more to be fed it is not in our experience practical. . To start with, we found it hard to treat the c:ommunal tools, cars, etc. as well as we did when they were·lour own.·But one spur to looking after them properly was the considerable economic advantage of common ownership: it only takes the wages of three people working out to keep the community of twenty, with visitors .. and thats with ca·e and ale. Education Lessons are provided for the kid, and. others who want them by individuals who spontaneously take on the task; though not compulsory they are usually attended. Practical subjects are taught as part of the work of the community. The five kids spend a lot of time hanging·out around a tree or the stereQ,·,whic:h worries some of the adults. Being myself an ex·Summerhillian who spent much time hanging.out I am unworried: more can develop in the void of a free growing mind than in one Stuffed with facts and figures. We have largely deschooled ourselves. Kids and adults learn side by side in the·ordinary business of living. All conventional educational institutions have in common the absolute requirement: the students must learn to do as they are told. This notion of obedience is possibly the most destructive one that can be imposed on young people. It tollditions them to be dependent and makes them frightened of responsibility. Our un·structured approach forces the pupil to understand the task a, a whole, which in·turn gives him the confidenee to take control and widens his imagination. Thus the practical construction of a weir was combined.with the theoretical study of trout farming (to be applied later we hope). As we inquire into things we dont know about we are sharing what we learn with a group of
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student teachers and fifth formers from a local college:.md sch.ool who are coming here once aYCctk as part of their schooling. Through 10cannvolYement of this kind we aim to broaden our educational activities to the larger community. WChope that by WilY of our free approach to education some of the joys·of our life·style will catalyse Changes in the insipid routines of·he local scnools: Mutual aid The emotional lives of the residents.nd others passing through, if they could be accurately expre,sed in words, would fill a book. Living closely together has had a seminal effect on our understanding of ourselve, and of others. We have learnt the value and meao!,·,& of commiseration by experiencing the sympathy of others when in need and the responsibility of condoling others when it is called for. Free expression in deed and word coupled with an unavoidable honesty has brought out a strong individuality in most of us. This has been particularly noticeable in the case of two couples, both made up of two persons who seemed half submerged in each other so that their personalities were comprom ised and incomplete. One of these couples split their tight bond, and, freed themselves from the security of the other but retained an affinity. In the other case, where, two children were involved, the chifdren fully understood their parents discord and were able to work out with other people their own relationship to it. There have been horrific breakups, amicable breakups, and joyful unions. It is with the collapse of cohabiting relation. ships that the community can best assist, through the cushioning effect of mutual aid. In the past we have found formal therapy beneficial to relieve suppressed resentments that have built up. However, only a few sessions were needed before it·became clear that we were delving into trivia and had seen through the real tensions. An ongoing therapy developed in the light of the insights gained from the formal therapy. It is a mistake often made to expect communities to run smoothly like institutions geared to efficiency or well·oiled mach ines. Communities are human situations that must ebb and flow with the emotional tides of their members. Crises erupt repeatedly but each time they sub,ide into a higher level of un,ity and stability. Politics What is the significance of a small group of people high on·the moors to the social politics of those not so high on those moors? Politics of the ordinary kind pass us by, except when we offer tea to election candidates
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who brave the elements to visit us. But as a community we become political bec:ause of our cotlective approach to issues. In fact we have a very definite role to play, the more so because we are constructive. Every time a woman from here goes out on a building job that a man would usually do we become significant. It is surprising how surpri,ed people arc. At the local level we·arc significant because of our dealings with the council and schools and other interested people. In the past small communities such as Summerhill have had tremendous influence. Our independence Jeaves us free to put into practice theoretical ideas·without having to compromise.

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Burton Planning Ploys can By·pass the Byelaws
LETS ASSUME that yo!"re getting it together in the country·as they say. Disregarding financial, social, technical or other complications; in what way are vou likely to be hassled by the local representatives ofB1g Brother·particularly the Local Planning Departmert? If this is where youre at, or .hope to be, then this article is written for your. a5si·tance. The rules, regulations,·guide·lines and powers Ill be talking about are comprehensive and cover many aspects of the country cottage/small holding scene. A general principle is that it is a mistake to underestimate either the power of the. local authority or the intelligence of any particular official. Ignorance in these matters is not bliss·at the very least it is inconvenient and time·consuming. The local bureaucrat tends to take his job rather seriously. He considers he is doing a socially useful job, and feels an individuals disregard for his rules to be a slight against his person. This offends him, and may turn him nasty. But initially you should remember thatthese officials are nice enough people in their own way. With some appreciation of the rules of the game, and the way in which the official views the world, the adoption of suitable tactics may provide rather more success than otherwise. Having found a suitable collage, the most important considerations are its cond ition and position. If its stnictural . condition is good (i.e. possessing four solid walls, a complete roof, and windows), preferably has some services, vehicular access and a garden, and has been recently inhabited, then there should be no objection in principle to your occupation or intentions to . renovate. Some experts quol/l the height of walls which should remain, or the maximum number of years since last .·: occupied, as guidelines, but in my experience there are no hard and fast rules of this kind. Having occupied the cotlage, you may within reason extend it. The Town and Country Planning (General Development Order) 1973 specifies various classes of deyelopment which do not require . planning permission, and the relevant sub·section states tbat (subject to othlor minor considerations) a dwelling may be . extended by up to 1750 cu. ft. of (whichever is the greater) to the capacity of the existin·dwelling (by external . measurement) before it requires planning permission. It should be noted .at this point that if a cottage has been recendy extended by (say} 500 cu. ft. then this reduces that lim it to 1250 cu. ft:
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In any event, a house extiJ.ision stilt requires permission from the local , .. authority under the Building Regulations 1972; Even if your proposal also requires . planning pennission then this is not, necessarily cause for dismay. A reasonable sized extension, which does not oyerwhelm the existing cottage but appears as a natural extension to it, and which follows local vernacular traditions in form, details and materials, should receive pranning permission. If your.pr<r posals are minor and/or very well hidden from public·iew, then in all probability they could be carried out without any permission. Sut then thatis really up to you. If your collage is in poor or derelict . condition, then there may be very serious problems. The estate agents prefix dilapidated describes properties ranging in condition from merely vacant to a pile of stone and·a chimney stack. Again there are no hard and fast rules, but in many parts of the country, a property lacking roof and windows woukl in most cases be regarded as if it no longer existed. This may well sound ridiculous, but the fact is that Its residential use right is said to have lapsed. In this case a planning application is required to establish this use and "ould be treated in the same way as an application for an entirely new dwelling (see bejow). In many areas, the local planning authoritys guidelines would pu.t perfectly sound properties into this category. The fat.t, that the building looks like a cottage is "not taken as evidence ihat it has a residential use right. On the other hand, S!,;aw and cow shit is taken as positiye .·jif.ence that the residential use has been r<waced by an agricIJltural one (so·r6"ve it). , The local planning authoritys policies on these confusing issues can be learnt by enquiring in general terms of the planning officer at the council offices·though to mention the address of the property may alert his suspicions. Alternatively there should be a written document somewhere in the offices of each planning authority, . which outlines each of these polices. Copies of these documents must be freely available for public scrutiny: If you consider a particular property to be worth your while, and yet doubts remain over its legal existence; then the correct tactic would be to quietly moye in and restore the collage to a habitable condition without alarming either neighbours or officials. Ob"viously this would be more difficult if the cottage is situated within sight of a public road, or within a village. The object is to gradually restore the cottage to a habitable condition, rather than to extend it at this stage. It would be a mistake to play Alan Freeman loudly all Saturday afternoon, or to use a JCB to clear debris. Added complications are Closing Orders, Time and Place Orders, and
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Demolition·Orders, placed upon dwellings by the Public Health Inspector (or often now·. adays the Environmental Health Officer). The last Order speak·for itself, and the first two specify works which must be" carried out before·a vacant property is re·occupied. Normally these works would be of a kind which you would probably want to carry out yourself anyway. The·problem is to detect whether a property is subject to such an order, without alarming the official concerned to the extent that he inspects and makes an order. The owner of the property should know, if you are in contact with him. Permission under the Building Regulations is considerably less of a problem. than Planning Permisl,ion, even though the rule book is much thi<ker. The rules are confusing, but they are at·least plainly defined and neatly packaged. The officers concerned are generally more human also: rather than refusing permission outright, they will at least let you know where . there are mistakes. The Building Regulations are generally good sense, though their innexib·ity may offend your aesthetic sensibilities. There is normally more than one solution to any particular problem, and the Building Inspecto.s are normally prepared to relax some of the rules in the case of old cottages. If you.do not know much about the Building Regulations it may well pay you to engage the services of someone who does. An app·cation for Building Regulations approval would involve the draftinR.of fairling detailed plans showing the form of construction, internallayoutJ external appearance. and specifying materials throughout. These drawings will be more than adequate for a planning application. If you are considering the purchase of land which does not include a dwelling, or where the existing structure is can·sidered so derelict that its renovation really involves the building of a new . dwelling, then you wou Id be advised to be very cautious. The Golden Rule throughout rural Britain is that "there shall be no new dwellings in the open countryside". This rule is explained in Development Central Note No.4: Development in Rural Areas (HMSO). Although local conditions vary, each rural authority operates to varying extents its own version of this rule. It is very difficult to defend the philosophical hilsis of this idea, stemming as it does from an unknown source, which appears to view the countryside as an empty land inhabited by a small number of very rich men, and just enough workers to make their investment pay very well indeed. Open Countryside is defined as all the countryside except specifically excluded settlements·the cities, towns. and larger villages. There are of course many examples where this Golden Rule has been broken, but you
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cannot assume that you will receive permission for a new dwelling On your chosen patch of ,land. If you are very lucky indeed you may come across an individual plot in a village, which the local planning authority may regard as an infilling plot and where permission would be forthcoming . Generally. planning permission for a new house is only granted where it is required for an essential worker employed in a rural industry.(normally agriculture or forestry)_ Brieny, to obtain permission, the smallholder has to show that the size, _ type, and system of management of his holding, are sufficient to employ him full·time throughout the year_ This is . worked out in terms of Standard Man Days (SM Ds). The more labour intensive the crop or stock, the $ewer acres are required therefore. One would be forgiven for expecting that this would favOtJr the smallholder, but unfortunately it does not. (But if we consider the image of the countryside held in the minds of our politicians and legislators we would Perhaps not be quite so surprised.) In Herefordshire for instance, the Ministry 9f Agricultures SMD figures dictate that (in traditional mixed livestock farming) a holding of at least 70·90 acres is required to support one full·time worker. Clearly this is nonsense. Iffarmed for·example on organic principles, this acreage could provide a good living for (say) six families. The authorities might disagree, but their figures would substantiate an agricultural claim fora new house on two or three acres if covered with glasshouses, or intensive poultry, pig or calf factory units! A family or community may live very well off a few acres by growing their own food, and selling a surplus. Unfortunately the Ministry of Agriculture calculations do not allow for th is·it is assumed that the harvesting, (adnnanee, would be carried out by a machine in hours rather than the community in weeks. The first requirement for a valid agricultural claim therefore is heavy capitalinvestment in·, land and/or machines or buildings (to house stock). . In short, it is a mis·ke to assume that planning permi1Sion will be forthcoming simplv because one owns a few acres; or indeed that the mere physical existence of a cottage on your land implies a legal right to live in it. The key to a planning application for an lagricultural workers dwelling is the standard agricultural claim form on which the applicant states the acreage of crops, the numbers of stock, and other details. The stock and cropping figures are multiplied by the corresponding SMD figure to give the totals: With 365 days in a year, a grand total pf 260 or so should ensure permission, and depending upon the mood of the planning officer and his committee perhaps a lower figure. Clearly the capital normally required ,to achieve this sort of figure is beyond the reach of anyone interested in reading this article. However, I believe there is scope for obtaining perm
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ission by specifying acreages of the most labour·intensive crops, such as cut flowers, ra5pberries, tomatoes, and so on. My one attempt with this approach has not to date proved successful, though I remain hopeful. Ive no idea how freely available are the Ministry of Agricultures SMD figuresor indeep whether they are confidential·but nevertheless I have a copy, and in return for a SAE to me c/o Undercurrents I will provide a copy for anyone ) Iho needs the figures. Let me conclude with notes on some . peripheral matters: agricultural buildings, workshops, conversions a.nd caravans. The Town and Country Planning (General Development Order) 1973 specifies that subject to cectain minor restrictions, an agricultural building of up to 5000 sq. ft. may be erected on a registered agricultural holding (registered with the Ministry of Agriculture) without the need to apply for planning permission (though still requiring Building Regulations approval). In fact many such works, required for agricultural purposes and carried out on agricultural holdings, are.Permitted Development when elsewhere they would require planning permission (e.g. quarrying stone). This leads to the use of buildings for workshops_ Clearly a community achieves greater balance if it possesses the resources to process or. manufacture. Technically a planning application is required as a change of use occurs (unless the last and recent use was “for·industrial purposes"). (Consult the Town and Country Planning Use Classes Order 1974). However if the workshop is so positioned, and of a kind that it would not be noticed, then I would not recommend applying. There are two other points to bear in mind_ Firstly that on an agricultural holding, workshops are a necessity for the normal process of farming. And secondly, it may be fairly easy to show that the workshop does not require planning permission because it is not a commercial activity but a private hobby. The conversion of non·residential buildings to residential use requires planning permission (and Building Regulations approval). You would probably find that the authoritys view on this matter is quite unlike your own, and in all probability the necessary per·missions would be very difficult to obtain. However, if little or no alteration is made to the external appearance then no official will be alerted as to the internal·use. Finally, it is often not realised that residential caravans require planning permission,·and that in most parts of the country permission is unlikely to be given unless there is a valid agricultural claim or u·less there are specific circumstances \0 warrant the granting of a temporary permissi"n. Most planning authorities will grant one, two, or three year permissions to an
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applicant whilst he renovates a cottage, or builds a new house. . In conclusion, it should be borne in mind that even though a specific proposal may require planning permission, it will not necessarily be refused. But if an application can be avoided, it will not only save some expense. but will prevent your local council inspecting your home and assembling a file upon it. Gary Burton

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Watching and Waiting The Political Police in Britain, Tony Bunyan (Julian Friedmann), £4.95. It isnt often that a digest of political information has the gripping power of a tense noyel; the Political Police in Britain sur·ly does grip you, and driyes a fatal series of wounds into the,guts of liberal mythology. The book is an account·from an explicitly socialist peJspective·of the develop·ment of law, the police and the counter·intelligence agencies with the development of the state, to identify, monitor and contain political activity. It is also a careful exam·ination of their present role and methods. • The agencies involyed are the uniforme,d poUce, the Special Branch, "15, or the Security Service, the Defense Intelligence Staff, as well as other intelligence pthering bodies, public and private. All have evolved from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries when the ideas of the neutrality of the state and its institutions were fashioned, and by the time any repr_ntatives of the working classes reached parlia·ment, were traditionally and constitutionally independent and substantially without parliaments reach. . The first weapon for the political police force is not batons, bullets, or computerised files, but the law. The law, starting from the enshrinement of proper·ty rights, has many acts to protect and maintain the state·among the most recollnisable are the Official Seerets Acts, Acts against treason, sedition and incite·men·and conspiracy char·es. The Official Secrets Acts are worthy of mention, notably for the clear snub that Bunyan and his publisher deliyered to one of its institutions, the D·notice committee. All official attempts to check if the book yiolated any o.nome·were rebuffed, and the D·notice proced·ure thus achieved as little credibility as the pu b1ishers were prepapd to give. But the:power of the three acts, passed during a bout of pre·war spy mania, remains formidable, particularly since the shelving of many reform proposals inade by the Franks Committee in 1972 The Franks Committee had proposed a replac;ment OffiCial Information Act which would have removed the,protec·, tive cloak of secrecy from much informa·tion, particularly that gathered by so·.called non·statutory means (on indiyiduals). The uniformed (and Cm) police start·ed out to guard the bourgeoisie in the mid·nineteenth century; as the century progressed, the extensioo of their role to police working class areas and their , actions on behalf of individual members of the working class gained legitimacy and brought acceptance of their role.
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And it was soon the practice that plainclothes policemen were used to spy on political meetings and to infiltrate organisations. . . In the early twentieth century, the aftermath of the police strike before the end of the first world war was the ban on any police union, and the establishment of a Police Federation, explicitly forbidden to affiliate 10 the TUC. Thus, "the police were dissociated from any work·ing class action such as the General Strike. The most significant development of the last few years has been the upsurge in pre·emptive policing·where information is gathered on people who, for reasons generally political or social, the police regard.as likely to become offenders. Two such units haye been set up since 1970, the Drugs Intelligence Unit and the Immigration Intelligence Unit. Both collect information on individuals whose only offence may be , the non·membership of white middle class suburban society. This year, both these files, with considerable personal information (250000 names were on the Drugs files by 1974) will be merged into the Police National Computer, The yast increase in information availability and cross linkage·rather than just information·provides considerable repression of civil liberties, and incidentally makes such information readily available to those who can pay for it through the armies of ""policemen employed by the private 56Cl(T[ty industry The Special Branch, formed in 1883, has now some 1000officers, roughly split equally between London and squads assigned to provincial forces. It is ideas which are (now) policed ... this is precisely the premise of the Special Branch. Their role from the ,(art has been to carry out surveillance and counteraction of political movements. During the hunger marches of the thirties, they infiltrated the moYement, followed its leaders, and prepared lis ts of militantsto be arrested. And they hayent changed much, although the strength has jumped several times, notably recently after the surge of protest in the late sixties, and again following the police retreat from massed miners at the Saltley coke depot and the Old Bailey bombings, both in" 1972. The Special Branch, despite condi·dons of secrecy surrounding their operations, are the overt agents of po1itical surveillance and intrusion; their covert counterpart is the Security Service, often called MIS, With ten times as many officers involyed in internal surveillance, (some four to five thousand) their work includes positive vetting and checking of civil servants to avoid the infection of lsubversivc connections, and watching MPs". industrialists and journalists; as well as political actiyists. MIS has gradually
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deyeloped to a situation of being answerable only in general terms to cabinet ministers. Even the Home Seer,etary, who nominally ,; . oversees the Security Service, has no absolute control, and information that may be giver"! to ministers is on a need to know basis. Storie, of MIS operations are understandably less plentiful. The greatest supply is found·at universities, traditional pasture for the secret services both to recruit and to monitor political activity. Cases such as that of the twenty Cambridge students invited to an important discussion at War Office Room 055 are typical. Other activities of MI5 are indicated by the discovery of bogs during the redecoration .of British communist party headquarters, and the sudden death in a ditch of Special Branch informer, Kenneth Lennon. Here, as in most of the book, Tony Bunyon has gathered and presented a frightening and authoritative guide to what is known of the activities of M15. To complete the demystification of D·notices, th is section reproduces the text of D·notice No 10·on the Intelligence Services! The technology of surveillance repertory available to these agencies , centres primarily on telephone tapping and mail opening. Sensibly cool advice is offered to the worried: Most political f activists are not under permanent surveil·lance by the state. When they become involved in a particular campaign, picket or demonstration the likelihood of surveillance increases, although the unfortunate (and totally erroneous) old chestnut about using engineers numbers to test for tapping is un·ortunately here repeated. Bllnyan recounts some of the classic tales of SlIch opera·tions, often discovered when they go wrong and your phone goes straight to the local nick or, as happened.to the anarchist weekly, Freedom, the mail gets delivered together with its checklist for interception· The Political Police in Britain is a factual, and not a sensational book. Where it does become so, as black curtains draw over .the·fu·ture,is inJhe account of ongoing Cabinet Office machinations in preparation for counter·revolution or the suppression of dissent. The National Security Plan has been revised in the light of Britains more than fifty counter·insurgency operations since 1945. The National Security Committee within the Cabinet Office, which very nearly metamorphosed into a total National Security Agency earlier this year, has spearheaded such activities since its formation in 19,73. They have been at·he centre of the increasing use of the army in civil affairs,.including special patrol groups of the Special Air Services Regiment and the Military Police joining the police on permanent patrol in London. If you reckon that the first wave of political arrests as the state topples wont hit you on your commune or country farm,then read no further. For the rest of the lefties,us lefties, this is the book of the political
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police·classic and quite essential. Wes Lajowicz Not to be taken Siriusly Read well, dear reader, and I will free you for aye of the urge or the need to read The Sirius Mystery, Robert K. G. Temple, (Sidgwick and Jackson), £6.95. In Mali, in the SW corner of the large anil dry Sahara, is a tribe called the Dogon. .Not a small tribe, nor an unimportant one, nor yet one about whom there are nObooks in libraries. The mystery is, that they know more about astronomy than Temple thinks they should. They know, especially, about Sitius a, a white dwarf star, and about its 50 year orbit around Sirius, the brightest star in the sky, and, in their pantheon, associated with the deity Nomlno, (transformed for the sake of the plot into a Sirius god). A nice mystery indeed, and worth stopping to sort out. The first additional infomnation to hand is that what the Dogon think about Sirius is wrong. For instance, they think that Sirius B is the smallest and densest star in the sky, and they believe in til! existence of Sirius C, another hypothetical companion of Sirius. These two facts date the Dogons knowledge of Sirius ,ather well. Sirius B was discovered by the Clarkes in 1862, . though the first measurements of its size and density were not made until the 1920s and, as it was the first white dwarf star founil, it was indeed thought tobe the smallest, densest .tar of any. Nowadays the,world.exc·R()bert K G Temple, haS heard of other, yet denser, white dwarves, as well as black holes, neutron stars and the like, leaving the Dogons knowledge behind. Likewise the eye and telescope sighlings of Sirius C, also dating from the 1920s, are not now thought valid. A few other clues: the Dogon know of Jupiters four major satellites but not the others. So; whence this mysterious knowledge? A traveller of the 20s or 30s? Jesuit missionary. F rench·administrator?Explorer?·nthTopoklgist? Someone, anyway, with a little and dated knowledge of the sky telling the Dogon a bit of impressive hearsay about the main star of their religion. Despite being brought. up in a correspondence in The Observatory well before publication these possibilities are never discussed in the book. Not for Temple a mere earthling with a copy of L Astronomle hastily grabbed at Austerlitz Station en route for the colonies; for him, men from Sirius are the chosen SOlIrce of this knowledge. The incongruities this brings in its wake are too many and amusing to mention, but, for instance, these creatures from Sirius have to be fish·men to explain the D<>gon obsession with
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water. Living on the edge of the Sahara doesnt count. And it doesnt help, either, that Temple is baffled by the chronology of the discoveries: he never mentio"ns the Clarkes or 1862, is wrong about when Sirius B was first photographed, and his own knowledge of astronomy makes the D<>gonlook like Fred Hoyle. Apart from which, the stellar mechanics of the Sirius system, (much too obvious a matter for him to have raised during his exhaustive researches), do absolutely forbid Earthlike planets, (from which Sirian creatures would have to have come in order to get by on Earth as comfol1ably as legend insists). The main part of the book, a most splendid edifice apart from its lack of foundation, is the tracing of the Dogons knowledge back to ancient Egypt, and ihen Babylonia, by way ()f puns, the otherwise inexplicable ciccurrences of things in fifties, and such like. This part of the book is best throught of as an eX,e.eise in the generation of complexity where none was before. There IS no sign thaUhe Dogon knew anything odd about Sirius before the 1950s or thereabouts, and there is no sign that anyon·at all did before Alvin Clarke. tested the targest telescope in the world in 1862 by pointing it that way. In this context the generat(lrs of speculation can have a field day but I suggest that you and I, dear reader, tiptoe away and leave it to them. They, their many readers, and the Longfordian literary intelligentsia before whom The Sirius Mystery was .Iaunched, need each other far more than. we need any of them. Martin lnce Noise in Industry Noise, Tony Fletcher, BSSRS, 9 Poland Street, london W1 25 p. It.is often suggested that urban, industrial society has caused a significant increase in the amount of noise in our environment, although if you define noise as lany unpleasant soUfld then it is quite possible that the amount of noise actually remains more or less constant. This is due to the ability of human beings to filter out irrelevant or disturbing sounds either by shift of attention or by gradual adaptation, so thaI, for example, a busy street doesnt seem any noisier to a city··dweller than a field full of sheel? would seem to a farmer. But for industrial workers there is a more serious problem which·goes beyond the limits of human adaptability, and that is the problem of high intensity sound. High intensity sounds are undoubtedly dangerous and can cause physiological damage to the ear·nerves; noise often, though not always, comes into this category. The effects of noise are usually psychological, it
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can Induce stress. it can affect work performance (in both . directions), and it can affect the ability to select and allend to relevant information. This usually occurs through the mechanism of arousal, which is as im·recise a concept as noise itself, but is, in general, a physiological state which can activate the body (autonomic arousal) or the mind (cortical arousal) for certain actions. There are time·sca1e complications, too: a continuous sound wouldnt really qualify as noise because adaptation quickly occurs, Industrial noise in particular is probably cQntinuoµs, and is therefore best considered as high intensity sound, The JT\ost disturbing outcome of continuous adaptation induced by high intensity sounds is permanent deafness. This pamphlet covers the area of induced deafness in informed and welcome detail. It explains how sound is measured and reminds the reader that the decibel scale is logarithmic. It frighteningly illustrates the proven re.lationship between the. intensity of sound, exposure time, and the·resultantlikelihood of hearing loss, The inadequacies of government controls are exposed, and the description of the symptoms of gradual deafness succeed in leaving the reader in a hypochondrlcal state for some weeks after. The reader is advised on what protective measures can be taken and, if too late, there is always the possibility of compensation. However, ine psychological effects of noise are somewhat lacking. It is a common mistake to percieve all noise as having detrimental effects, The relati·on·. ship between arousal ( and noise increases arousal) and task difficulty is an . inverted U, Noise could therefore be beneficial to the performance of si mple tasks (suboptimal), but equally, detri·. mental to harder tasks (supraoptimal). Noise probably narrows peoples attention, helping them to select relevant cues from their environment., and this could be useful for jobs which require constant vigilance but very little action. This is a well·documented pamphlet. It presents difficult problems clearly·without being patronising, and it makes sensible safety recommendations w.h ich I hope (although .1 fear notl will be followed by the workers in high risk industries. Chris Fowler Z.A.M.M. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Robert M Pirsig (Corgi). £0,95. The truth knocks on your door and you say "Go away, Im looking for the truth, " and so it goes away.
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Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance has been around for a couple of years, but the recently. published paperback became a best·seller in one weeks trading. Whatever it is that people feel they need, whatever ghost still p;owls the well, fed cities stirring discontenl, this book promises enlightenment. It has the form of an Odyssey, philosophical enquiry agai",t a backdrop of moving scenery in the company of turtles and wild ducks and red·winged blackbirds. 11 comes packaged with vicarious fresh air. . But it Is claustrophobic America, too reluctantly discovering the frontier is gone and all the great trails have been paved, and the only place left to explore is other peoples back yards, It weaves its way along dirt roads and freeways, across mountains and plains, touching motels and steak houses, universities and small tow"" The narrator plunges through friendship and loneliness, and tI·oings worse than loneliness, pursuing a verbal formula that can unite his fractured experjenc·. At times it seems a very long ride indeed, Unhappinness is never far away, Every small victory is brazed with pain and consecrated with Suffering. The narrator slowly discovers the remains of his erstwhile self, a turbulent, megalo·maniac personality who ultimately became catatonic and was purged with ECT, In chaotic flashbacks he traces this character, Phaedrus, a teacher of Rhetoric who was obsessed with the idea that he was about to make a philosophical discC)very of. world·shattering importance. His social inadequacy is sublimated into fantasies of intellectual world dominat·ion. Phaedrus’s enquiry takes the form of a search for the meaning of the word Quality. No object or activity is immune from this endeavour, everything is observed only insofar as it eli.cits anott facet of such meaning. The process begins with a chance remark and blossoms into an all·consuming frenzy of academic nit·picking, as Socrates, Plato, Hume, Kant, Thoreau and Poincare become enmeshed in philosopical vox·pop, Phaedrus concludes that Qual ity is someth ing that happenj when the subjective meets the objective, an ecstatic denial of Aristotelian dualism which, so he conceives, is·the bane of western culture·. The story is a parable of isolation,Phaedrus is Greek for wolf;·the wolf·im·e occurs several times in the text, Phaedrus is the lone operator, the wanderer, the canny survivor o·the dessert·plain, who feels alienated from his social environment and choses to live in a private, essentially internal world. Then·are many points of comparison with Hesses Steppenwolf, the theme of self·destruction, the burden of clairvoyance, the silenceJ a sense of belonging to a different tribe, his virtues unacknowledged, But Pirsigs
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wolf is a Prairie wolfJ an American Wolf, the wolf that barks inside disaffected city dwellers, . Phaedrus’s search for Quality becomes a symbol of all unrequited yearning. generating a need for rnovement, for giddy escape from arid sOcial relations, hanging on the coattails of Kerouac. Pirsigs Odyssey assumes a rhythm of frantic disassociation, from his past, from his present, from his friends, As the road spins by beneath the wheels of his motorcycle he relive< the horror of his insanity and struggles to express ideas of value salvaged from the remains of his former p·rsonality. His·theme is Quality as applied to day·lo·day activities, a sense of mindfulness, of creative integration between the actor and the object. Motorcycle maintenance is the pretext with whkh he illustrates this world·view; a series of tasks and operations. which can be done either b·dly or excellently, depending on your state·of mind. It is at the same time a scientific and religious experien<:e, this feeling of oneness with the machine. The Buddha, the Godhead, resides quite as comfortably In the circuits af a digital computer or the gears of a cycle trammlsslon as he does at the top of a mountain or in the Petals of a flower. Technology is potentially a force for good, but people must develop a feeling of intimacy with it before this can be so. He condemns not only those exponents of the machine·age who have turned·their knowledge into something ugly and oppressive, but also the Romantics who avoid everything mechanical in pursuit of bucolic, pre·industrial fantasies. Technology is art, is creativity, is the joyful union of human beings with the manifold possibilities of their world. But it is a passion, not simply a tool. And yet in spite of these eloquent insights an ethos of political reaction, perhaps just naivety, pervades. Pirsig is an isolated person and seeks to analyse his problems in isolation from otherS. His implicit political system is static and non·interactive: the problem of·tech nological ugliness will be solved when everyone has learned to feel oneness with the forces of that technology. But he shows no understanding of the social dynamics through which this might or might not come to pass. He says If a factory is tom down but the rationality which produced It Is left standing, then that rationality will simply produce another factory. So he expresses his political disillusionment, the source of his individualism and his creed of uncommunication. Whatever effect tearing down a factory might have on the consciousness of participants it is for Pirsig the destiny of despair. And Zen, for him, is an escape from this piece of painful
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education, a rival observed in the austere comfort of aloneness, a particularly private property. Perhaps this too explains the appeal of the book: it puts no obligation on anyone to kick the habit of quiet acquiescence. Martyn Partridge Stone Story The Sphinx and the Megaliths, John Ivimy, (Abacus) £1.20. A hundred, word synopsis could replace the need to read this book as far as his substantive theories go. However, a scatter of titbits and plentiful details provide a light popular introduction into the prehistoric puzzle of the degree of contact and exchange between the ancient peoples of N.W. Europe and Egypt , His first part starts us off in Egypt. assessing the economic base of the religion and the quality of their meta·physics, and then he goes on to play the ancient map game. With a mental jump we return to these merry isle·and a review of the Archaeology of Stone·henge and the work of Thorn, Hawkins, etc on astronomical alignments, shapes of circles and megalithic yards . . There follows a discussion of the mystical number phi and the associated Fibonacci series, and their relevance in the construction.of the Pyram,,·ls Using the relationships between. the Royal cubitt and the megalithic yard, and some . other inferences, he forges this direct bond of contact between Egypt and Britain. The scene has now been set for the final act where Ivimy, who obviously sees himself as the Mary Renault of Mega. lithic Man, tells us how the Egyptian priest·astronomers despaired at their loss of face (and income) ...nen a slight wobble in the Moons orbit wrecked their careful eclipse predictions. Naturally iheir first . thought is to finance an astronol! lical ; research expedition to a more northern ! latitude to measure this perturbation, so·; with a quick glance at the map, they head . ;,·.,. for Milford Haven. Up goes a stone circle Lt .. in the Prescelly mountains but wind, I ,. 44 I···:: ", _·rain and mist interfere with the scientific enterprise so they drag the (now sacred) stones to the clearer skies of Salisbury Plain and Stonehenge. The locals soon Thotb. Ibis god of wis·dom aod scribe to Osiris catch on, and then yOu cant stop them, the damn things start springing up all over! What would the planners say? A revolution or twO in Mother Egypt leaves the colony isolated so it has to fend for itself. They dont do so badly for a while but the decline eventually sets in .. AlI good fun, riest·ce pas? At least he doesnt try to pretend otherwise. \Vhile not wanting to get too serious, I noticed in a work done
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on the Dorset Cursus the suggestion that one or two alignments fit better if a date of 4000 Be is assumed, rl,lher than 2500 Be .. While asyet unproved, more indications of gradual development and this enjoyable speculation about sudden development will look rather silly. (Though we’d still be no closer to deciding between separate development and parallel, . development with contact!) Pete Glass Consume now,·live later (maybe) Consumerism and the Ecological Crisis, Alan Roberts, (Russell Press), 25p. The publication of the Forrester/Meadows/Club of Rome assessments as to prospects in store for us.in the future, (if we dont mend our ways), produced a variety of responses from the traditional ieft who had, until then, felt that criticism of industrial society was their private preserve. Some said it was all lies, that technology, freed from the shackles of capitalism, could usher in a utopia of abundance. Others were more circum·spect and said that if we abolished planned obsolescence, the artificial creation of needs by·advertising, and conspicuous consumption generally, then there might indeed be enough slack to maintain and even improve peoples lot without going beyond the limits to , growth. If you add to that the (hope. fully) much more effective matching of social needs, resources and effort that would exist under socialist planning, then there was no need to worry unduly about . the eco·crisis, which 1s just the ultimate crisis of capitalism. not 50 much a threat to socialist society. Even so, very few socialist writers felt that they could guarantee this happy outcome because, according to their own ideology, the precise shape and form of socialist society would only emerge as part of the process of struggle. . . This pamphlet by.Alan Roberts stops_ short of prescribing a fully fledged alter·native future. He demonstrates that the eeo·crisis is a crisis which faces a society based on ever·increasing consumer demand. These demands, artificially stimulated above the ncedievel, cannot be satisfied on a finite planet and this poses a threat to the capitalist system. In the past capitalists have been able to win commitment to, or at least resigned acceptance of, the system of exploitation because although the carving up of the economic cake might be unfair, the overall cake was expanding and individual slices got bigger. But this canlt go on. say the ecologists. Economic growth must be halted. This implies that something, or Someone, has to give. The capitalists are .. unlikely to accept a.cut in profits or a redistribution in wealth in order to I stave off confrontation SO if (as they do) they want to maintain the status quoJ they will have to re·appropriate some of the workers share·through
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increased·exploitation, cuts in ,wages and social services, and soon. We are having a dry run of.this policy,at present, in response to one of the frequent minor dislocations within the capitalist economic system . Roberts argues that the way out of this . is to dismantle not only capitalism but also the whole consumerist syndrome. Its not sufficient simply to replace capitalist control by socialist state control as in the Eastern block. The USSR ana her all ies are equally threatened by the need to placate the population with consumer goods, even if, so far, they have been able to resist this demand in most cases. What we need, argues Roberts, is a society which meets genuine needs, and these are not all material. He asks the crucial question why do people engage in endless productive labour when their basic needs could be met at a much lower level of effort?, pointing out that most basic needs were being met in the US at the level of production reached in the 1940s. Since productivity has doubled since then we could have cut the working week by half. So what is it we are pro·ducingin the remaining time? Roberts argues that it is consumerist rubbish of only marginal value. Although he accepts that p.ower·operated windows in cars ond aftershave lotions can be a source of enjoyment ... what can be queried is whether the sum totol of such pleasures, maryinal at best, is worth twenty hours a week of.compulsory labour for life. Robertss explanation of this situation is that quite apart from the immense pressure of advertising and sOcialisation fordng us to consume, consumption is, in the·existing social system, the only available way to satisfy needs. I t is a sub·stitute for being able to control ones life and environment, You can buy a bit of heaven·accept it falls apart after a week. If we repiaced this false satisfaction of artificially contrived needs with the chance to satisfy real social needs, then the level of material consumption would fall. People would actualise themselves not through posse,sionof goods, but through involvement in public decisionmaking over resource allocation, technological policy and so on. In a democratic and non·exploitative society, the need to " compensate by consumption for aUcnation, hierarchies, and repression would be replaced by self·fulfilment through selfmanagement, and new types of satisfaction could therefore blossom. Robertss vision of a self·managcd socialist utopia, with science and technology freed from the need to feed consumerism, has much in common with the al·ernative technologists utopia, and this pamphlet deserves the careful attention of anyone who thinks that socialism necessarily means ever·enlarging bu reau·cratic state control. It remains to
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be tested whether the current experience of wage·restrai·t, unemployment, social service cuts and the like will provide the impetus for a challenge, not only to capitalism, but to the consumerist values it has so carefully nurtured ... , and, of course, this is where the socialist d·ream tends to be weak. For generations workers have been taught that the only way they can satisfy their needs is by making economistic demands. But it is becoming obvious that winning high wages is useless if you cant obtain access·to adequate services, resources and environments in order to enjoy the fruits of your labour, so wider issues than take home pay are likely to emerge. Dave Elliott Power Crazy Nuclear Power, Walter C. Patterson (Penguin), £0.80. Let it first be said, without equivoca·tion, that Walt Patterson has written a most excellent book. Nuclear Power has three major strengths. It manages to step nimbly between the twin pitfalls of glib supe<ficiality and getting bogged down in the horrendous detail which besets things nuclear; it nowhere forgets the fact thatnuclear power is an ethic.al, social and political problem as much as technical; it sees bombs and reactors as part of the same system and does not fall prey to the illusion of the peaceful atom. The first part of the book, 114 out of 304 pages, is a very readable introduction to the technology of nuclear power. It begins With the basic physics (in words, so dont worry!), goes on to describe in fair·detail the major reactor systems, and ends with a description of the fuel cycle·from mining and enrichment to reprocessing and waste management. The second section, entitled The world and nuclear fission·begi ns by pointing Ol!t that the d;scovet·both of fission itself and its drawbacKS occurred almost simultaneously when" in 1&96 Henri Becquerel put a vial of radium in his poc.ketand burned himself. Ever since then the toll has mounted steadily, from Marie Curie herself to the anonymous women. who painted the dials of luminous watches and developed bone sarcoma in their jaws. From American·uranium miners in the 1930s who died of cancer, via Hiroshima, to the unknown and perhaps unknowable victims of the fallout from atmospheric tests." The action really gets going after" World War 2 with the MacMahon act, which effectively froze out the USAs two wartime partners, Britain and Canada, from the race to develop a droppable H bomb, (won incidentally by.the Russians) and the <levelopment of the first power reactors from plu tonium·producing military designs. Concern over nuclear issues began to
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develop rapidly but for a long time was confined largely to weapons. Ralph Lapp had by 1954 pointed out, in the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, a few home truths that the USAEC had been reluctant to recpgnise. Far from being spread out uniformiy around the globe, fallout from tests was being deposited largely in the most populous regions. In 1955 came the Russell·Einstein manifesto which called upon scientists to unite in seeking a way out of the nuclear impasse and directly led to the setting up of the Pugwash conferences which have played a prominent part in alerting the·world to the dangers of nuclear developments. By 1958 CND * was formed in Britain and organised its first march to Aldermaston. Meanwhile the reactors were off al)d running, and it was not !ong before inevitable accidents occurred. First the melt down of the Canadian N RX re"ctOf, then the infamous Windscale incident of 1957 when 20,000 curies of Iodine 131 were released and 2 million litres of milk poured down the drain. l"ollowing that comes How th·y nearly lost Detroit .. the Enrico Fermi fast breeder melt·down of 1963. Ail in all, the book is a good read for the nuclear necrophiliac who likes to know the lurid, neutron disseminating details of reactor accidents and the body count after each. If Nuclear POlJLoer is to run to a second edition, and no doubt it will, then the section most deserving of expansion .is that on tosts·for too long too·much wool has been pulled over too many eyes and, at least in my opinion, cost is likely to be t·e rock on wh ic.h the al ready leaky nuclear ship will finally founder. But what needs to be stressed time and again is that nuclear power is a poUtical, and not merely a techt:Jical question, with all that tl1at implies in terms of vested interests, institutional inertia and plain human greed, stupidity and ignorance. Pat Coyne End of World: Latest Business .Civilisation in Decline, Robert L. Heilbroner (Marion Boyars), £1.95. Business civilisation is a euphemi.sm for capitalism. Heilbroner, an American liberal, uses it because his theses, that capitalism will disappear within a ten·tury, smacks of radicalism, And Heil·broner, an economist who writes for people to read, is not a radical. So stifle your yawn·he aint another Trot! The five chapters deal with three stages in the decline of capitalism (the nex t decade, the middle range of 25 to 50 years, and the long·run demise with·in about a century), and with two current I)lystifications that d·t1ect . .
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attention from the long trajectory of capitalism(post·industrial society and >multinational corporations). The book is readable, short, and has an intelligible argument which stands on its own feet while drawing on the vast Marxist and non·Mandst literature of prediction, But it fails to be specific about the details of problems and policies, about how the decline will come (he concentrates correctly on why it must). and about the limitations of earlier and current predictions. The argument is nOlfatalistic, but neither is it a call to action. I t sets au t rationally Why, in order to preserve capitalism in the face of the problems endemic to its unplanned development, the state will have to intervene increas·. ingly in detailed workings of the capitalist economy and instlwtions. It contains in passing much facwal debunking of misunderstandings about capitalism both on the Left and on the Right, while .retaining Liberal misunderstandings of contemporary Marxism. Heilbroner starts with the failure of two important sets of predictions about capitalism the various Marxist predictions of social revolutions in the capitalist strongholds, and the dominant libera·capitalist view that ameliorative capitalism will, through increasing production, provide more for everyone and make the over throw of the system unnecessary. He foresees the continued extension of planning to preserve capitalist power, but encountering increasing problems until finally the use of non·capitalist criteria to deal with problems of capitalist accumulation brings capitalism under political control. Generalised disorders (of which inflation is but the latest), localised disorders (like the near collapse of the financial structure in Europe and the·US in the early 1970s) and resource depletion and threats to life·support, each requires extension of political control to maintain capitalism without threatening tts inertial core of privilege. Thus Kissi(!ger. In 30 to 50 years three strains will limit the posSibilities of such capitalist planning. Firstly, affluence and economic... . security will erode wage·slavery and exacerbate the problems of inflation and how to get necessary but unpleasant work done. (Such difficulties push towards non·market, political definition of income distribution). Secondly, transnational capitalist technology and science·based growth strengthen the technocrats and cauSe a power·struggle between capital and the scientific·techoicai elite. (Yeah, Veblen!) And thirdly, new technologies of vast destructive power, genetic engineering, weather modification·not mere pollution or . resource depletion, will require social control for which today we are almost totally unprepared. All these middlerange strains are coosequences of industdalism, socialist or capitalist, so Heilbroner hopes
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policy will combine socialist economic planning with lthe best of liberal caPitalist political practice! . The ideological justification of capitalism has never been that it is • humane and serves the people·it has been mat growth provides a mass way. of escaping the lack of material goods, that accumulation creates the historical. possibility of egalitarian affluence. Marx argued this in The Communist M&nifBSto, prateeding to state thant remained for socialism to realise that possibility. Heilbroner, though, ends weakly by ruefully contemplating the likelihood of the emergence of a new religious orientation ... perhaps today foreshadow·ed by the kind of religious politlcism We find in China ... The philosophy of individualism, which the capitalist epoch has nurltJred •... offers the deepest .reason to hope that not all its civilisation will disappear along with the business system. Methinks I prefer the explicit politics in command, of the kind repre·sented by the Instiwte for Workers Control! John Flynn Growth Economy Marijuana Growers Guide, Mel Frank and Ed Rosenthal,(Omnibus Books, 53 West Ham Lane, London:E15), £2.25 . Green .grows the grass in the abandoned railway cuttings of Somerset and the secret valleys of Radnor, providing a cheap and satisfying home·grown .substitute for the expensive imported hash that we’re offered nowadays. Everybody benefits: self·sufficiency freaks have a new cash·crop for which there is an insatiable demand, dope·heads are freed from the clutches of the inter·national criminals who currently dominate the import business) and the nations scarce reserves of foreign currency are saved for more vital needs (if any there be). Roger Lewis of Release is writing a book about growing dope in Britain which will largely rely on the (remarkably well·informed) replies to his. letter in Undercurrents 14, but this will not be about until the autumn because he is busy writing a study of the heroin trail until then. If, in the meantime, you had thought of trying a few plants this summer than you would do well to look at this little book, in spite of its price. The Marijuana Growers Guide comes from California, where dope is , decriminalised and somewhat vieux jeu, except among the school kids. In the UK it remains an offence to cultivate cannabis though (probably) not to possess cannabis leaves (see Eddies). Until our rulers grow up, be careful. Marijuana is one of the fastest growing and most adaptable plants known
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to science. In the tropics it may reach a height of twenty feet; in Britain it can easily grow to .six feet. So the main problem is to find a growing area that is far enough away from the beaten track and the prying eyes of your neighbours, yet exposed to direct sun at least eight hours·day. A tall order in this over·crowded island. The alternative, which anyone with an attic or cellar or other spare room should consider, is to establish an indoor garden. For £25 you can build one large enough to yield 16 ounces of grass every six months or, on the continuous growth system, a smaller but steady yield after only two. The first ounce you sell will get you your bread back. All you need to do is hang a fluorescent light that can be raised or lowered over some pots filled with a good soil mixture. All the materials you need can be bought from garden shops and hardware stores. The second difficulty to be overcome is getting hold of some good seed. It is not controlled under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 but nevertheless the most obvious source of supply, bird seed, is boiled in an attempt to sterilise it. You can expect about 10% germination. The other snag about bird seed is that it comes from strains selected for their fibre content rather than their resin so you won’t get as good a buzz as you would from a good strain of grass. There are large variations between the tetrahydrocannibinol (THC) content of the leaf from different strains and one well adapted to our climate will give as good a yield as the best Moroccan Gold. So the moral is “Save Your Own Seed". Given some seed or some cuttings and space to plant them, the rest is simple. This book tells you all you need to know, perhaps in rather more detail than is necessary for anyone who has a garden. At the end a number of intriguing methods of (allegedly) increasing the potency of the crop are described, from blue mould or sweet music to lizards or planting by the moon. Altogether this is a model of what a growers guide should be. I recommend it. Chris Hutton Squire Round Up Best news for a rong time on the SIllall mags front is that Foul has reappeared: number 32 costs 20p for 16 pages from 27 Selwyn Road, Cambridge. Its good stuff, too. Freedom of contract,scandal in Southport, Portsmouth and Hearts, digs and insults at Revie, Bremner, Allison et ai, great inanities from the press (necessarily incomplete), a piece on football coverage in West German papers, and the Fair Play League, just won again by Liverpool in a remarkable double. Also out is the Foul Book of Football edited by Andrew Nickolds and Stan Hey, 128 pages fof £1.50, being a
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com·pilation of the best of Foul from 1972 to 1975. Alan Stewarts account of the accident in which 66 pC9ple Were killed at Rangers ground in January 1971, drawing out as it goes the whole mess of the Protestant oligarchy which rules Glasgow, is perhaps the best piece in the book. But the humour, too, as well as the insight and the sheer spirit of the thing (in the context of a game which has pro. duced some of the worst prose ever published) makes it one of the best buys of the year. BSS RS have produced another title in their series on industrial health hazards (Noise is reviewed nearby), this time 011, available for 75p from 9 Poland Street, London W1. This pamphlet just couldnt be recommended too highly. I t details all the more common injuries and disabilities caused through exposure to oil, their symptoms, treatment) methods of protection and compensation claims. Almost every, industrial worker is vulnerable to oil·induced illness of one sort or another, so everyone, certainly every shop·steward, should be fam i1iar with the information which it contains. Fortean Times, 50p from Post Office Stores, AJdermaston, Berkshire, is a very weird read for people who like their silly season to last right through the year. It continues the work of Ch·arles Fort, indefatigable researcher into the purely bizarre, who spent his life collecting information about three·headed donkeys, showers of frogs, UFOs, phantoms, sea·monsters, and just about anyth iog else beyond the pale of nine·to·five respectability. The whole thing is particularly well documented, contrives to blow ,he mind without insulting the intelligenu, and really ought not Iu be missed. Archaeoastronomy In P(fJ·Columbian America, edited by AntbonyFAveni, (U of Texas Press), 436pp, £1 O.l?, is·a scholarly volume comprising eighteen articles on native American astronomical thought and practice. Articles on cave art, eariy calendars, alignment {)f sites, data on eclipses and celestial movementsand the like, by a motley crew of practising architects, astronomers, archaeologists and other footloose intellectuals, form the core pf the book. The wide range of content means that it gives a much·clearer impression of early astronomy than any one book on prehistoric Europe. This is of the utmost iillerest to anyone into the ancient knowledge/megaliths/Thom field,·efh·icaI t:uridlsil" and itw/>uld be no bad thing if libraries were to receive lots of requests for it. The somew.hat Texan price makes it a bad buy, though, unless youre very interested indeed. Since 1971 Science History Publications Journal for the History of Astronomy have been publishing all the new work by the Thom family on megalithic sites in the UK and Brittany. Now a fiver, payable to them and sent to Dr M A Hoskin, Churchill College, Cambridge, will bring you a
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boxed set of reprints of all twelve papers. They cover sites at Carnac, Stonehenge, Brogar and Islay, and are well worth the expense for the enthusiast. A pleasant use of your taxes is the Small Firms Information Service, 65 Buckingham Palace Road, London SW1, and branches hither and yon. They are there to help small businesses·get on and could well be useful to little people trying to market bits of AT gubbins. Two of their publications are of interest to political activists, n;unely Seeking Company Information: UK Sources and International and Foreign Sources. These cover the usual ways (Who Owns Whom, Kampass, Stock Exchange Yearbook) of finding out about companies, as well as some less obvious ones, and should be on tile shelf of any scourge of capitalism. S R IS will send them on request, but dont make it too obvious that your objective is the overthrow of the !iystem by Thursday. Co/gocus, the Scottish review of . politics, current affairs, history and the arts, has just published its third issue; 60 pages for 60p from The Schoolhouse, Dornie, by Kyle of Lochalsh, Rossshire. It has Jots of poetrY, some fiction, articles on land in Scotland, and an interv,iew with Dafydd Iwan of Gymdeithas Yr laith Cymraeg. But above all theres Tom Nairns excellent article Nortliern .Ireland and Europe, ill. which he rescues a few truths from the grip of media obfuscation, throws out some excess left·wing baggage such as the anti·imperialist myth, and brings the UWC strike of 1974 (the most si·nificant working class action of the war) embarrassingly from under the carpet. If this gives you a taste for Nairns work youll find some more, together with a lot of other goodies, in Bananas, 30p from 2 Blenheim Crescent, London W11. This is a comic, review and literary vehicle driven pretty near your sensibilities by a bunch of dangerous anarchistsj J G Ballard, Heathcote Williams and two, generations of Cockburns numbered among them. You could do worse than stand in its way.

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Small Ads not corrected
COMM!J!I1IT!ES JACK·OF·ALL·TRADES is Jookinl for peo·le who need an inventor or Mr, Fixit to complete their group. I can drive tractors (licensed). milk cows, build sheds. fix wirinl and plwnbm&. and make gadJt;t:1S that often work. Tony Gilbert. Riverford Fum, Totnes, Devon, YOUNG LASS and three·month daughter desire to move from city to a farming community, I eat meat, but am quite happy. with a wgetArian diet. Will move any time from 1st July onwards. Pka.se np)y to Ms . .J. Kirby, 4 Wellington Hill, Bristol·7. HOUSE AND LAND SEEDED for common sense common ownership project·likely derelict, must he cheap·can you helP? Hamish, 18 Blades St, lAncaster. WE ARE A COUPLE living on a 3 .... c:re Jmallholdina and want to share the howe wUh alhen. AIlIYone interested wrUe to Pam and Gary, Flynnonearrel. Llanll8dwrn. Dyled. SHELTER SCOTTISH HIGHLAND youth hostel near Aviemore for sale. Former v1lJ.8ge school, aJate and &ranite, crudely converted to &leep up to f>0 in bunk •• but leneraUy suitable for an) recreational use or small bu.sine ... IV, acres. 01·9470023. USE MY We1!lh Cotta.e. I ean·for several yean. Very beauUful, remote, no electricity. Suit someone needjng peace to work. Any period. Informal arranaement. Box ME. UndereunentJ. WORK KINGS LYNN. Anybody interested in starting a book/food stall on the market? Contact .lohn 9,:Wcox. 18 Priory Lane. Kings Lynn. I WOULD LIKE to oontad pro felSionallUd·en and othft landbased workers to dlscuu the establishment of a small. cooperative horticult.ural project (e.l. market ,arden or nursery) with radical objectives; preferably Highland relion: organic btu. Mike Grey. 8 Tarbat Crne, Brora. Suthed,ll.nd. Scotland. A 01 FFERENT tuNO OF Joe InWNtted In new way of work)"" tov·tMrl Want to N·mON MY" you!: own .. fe P Don"t min ttl. new IBU. eNo.. 3) of InTh_ Milking, iI jl..·ctory of propos.:! productive Ifo"cts.. • 975 _dltlon. From 22 Alblirt R·. s.Nm"d I, Prt·22. PIN c.oov. Inefuell", POSt. Subsalpt1ons6Op.. PUBLICATIONS READERS" WRITERS Publish1n& Co·operative are produclna :Son·Seltist Childrens Literature. Four new title, at £2.50 + lQti; posta;u from 14 Talacre Rd, London NW5: 01·4861949. PLUG: Anarchist Worker has cbanged jts name from Libert·arl&n St.rua:le·more details from AWA, 13 Coltman S·, Hull. SATELLITE NEWS:·be weekly ne .. bulletin 01·ce actlvUy. Subserlptionl .13 per year (52 1ssues)I..Ample COpy lOp. P04·free.·JuST PUBLISHED: SATELL1TES 57·75: a complete lbt1nI: 01 &ll s\lCee8Ifut .p·.cn1t l&unChtlt be·we6n 4. OdoMr 1961 and 31 December 191·n post free. Ge·othey Falwot1b (U), 12 B&m Croft. Peowol1ham.
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_______________________________________________ Undercurrents 16 June-July 1976 Page 125

Prenon PRI OSX. SELF·SUFFICIENCY can becom. mor. then. catchphr ... with Countryside &0 Smai Stock Journal. thre .,·bllh9d monthlv nWgIIzln_ for .11 who Pfoduc. th .... own food. SAE for d·lta. or 45p for spfti·n copV. to B. Gundr • .". Al.ton. CA9 3LG. BRAIN POISON. For informatiOD 00 lead an petrol.end llUle S,Le. 168 Dora Road. London SW19. COSMIC CONTACT ls a Dew mon.thly in1ormation ne .... t1e·ter on active meditation eentrea. retreats, work&roupS. dmma proJects. commwiltie. and publin·tionl. They want to h,ear from people who are busy in any of thue areas •. 1iO if You want to get a mention write with detaih: about what youre up to. A d:z·month sub to Cosmic Conta.d coSU SOp U:l for a year) from Jose. . Pr Hendrlkkade 142. Amsterdam, Hol1.a.nd. _ HARDWARE PELTON WATERWHEELS: Fadory direct. Information auide 11.00 BX124 Curter. Wa.shincton. 98240 U.s.A. PERSONAL WANTED: Book&(etcl on Utopias, put present and future·also Rickards, PostelS of Protest and Revolutlon, and The Frinee of British Politics (author unknown). Offen to Bob .lames. Heminsfold Farmhouse, Telham. Battle, East Sussex. ANY GAY people interested in lood/eneta., seU"$\Itficiency pleue contact us for posllbie projects/ network formation 01 seJf·sufficient lay people. Reply to Undercurrents Boa: AR. ETCETERA HELP! Strulliin& loca) ENVIRONME.·TAL GROUP needs dedicated member •. Ecofreaks. in Barnet are. contact. Krlata. It Dave Lontdale. 72 OTHER BRANCH BOOKS AND CORNMOTHER WHOLEFOODS. tolether at 42 Bal.h St. Leaminl ton Spa. Well worth a visit if M:°id··:.YB··:····ive teCbnololYd food, plan.b. health .. ec:ololY an much more. plus reaDy cheap who)elood. and herbs. O·en Monday·Ba.tl.UdaY. 10·6. We re at the bot.tom end of Che Parade} neat the station. Phone,28161·. . • GET LOST this IWDmer wjt..h Head for t.be Hl1lI. ,2fj weekly. 21 Pembroke Ave., Hove. Sussex. (+ stamp). NEW COMMUNITIES EXCHANGE Celnd, T)WYDb Merionethshire·Iune 18·2 . Thi8 .. eek·nd is a kind of telephone eJ:cbanae for people mterMed In jotnin& new community ventureS. Tbere wUl also be an illut.Uated talk. abou.t home. production. £5 per head. Family rates by ananlemeDt.. Write·Ahe,... native Sodet,.. 9 Morton AvenUf, Kld.llnlton, Oxford.

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_______________________________________________ Undercurrents 16 June-July 1976 Page 126

RADICAL TECHNOLOGY: is now available in all good bookshops. You can order copies from Undercurrents at £3.50 post paid. Here is Peter Harper's summary of the book, for lazy reviewers and prospective purchasers.
Radical Technology is a large·format, extensively illustrated collection of original articles concerning the reorganisation of technology along more humane, rational and ecologically sound lines. The many facets of such a reorganisation are reflected in the wide variety of contributions to the book. They cover both the 'hardware'·the machines and technical methods themselves·and the 'software'·the social and political structures, the way people relate to each other and to their environment, and how they feel about it all. The articles in the book range from detailed 'recipes' through general accounts of alternative technical methods, to critiques of current practices, and general proposals for reorganisations. Each author has been encouraged to follow her or his own personal approach, sometimes descriptive, sometimes analytic, sometimes technical, sometimes political. The contributors are all authorities in their fields. The book is divided into seven sections: Food, Energy, Shelter, Autonomy, Materials, Communication, Other Perspectives. Over forty separate articles include items on fish culture, small·scale water supply, biological energy sources, a definitive zoology of the windmill, self·help housing, building with subsoil, making car·tyre shoes, the economics of autonomous houses, what to look for in scrap yards, alternative radio networks, utopian communities, and technology in China. Between the main sections are interviews with prominent practitioners and theorists of Radical Technology, including John Todd of the New Alchemy Institute; Robert Jungk, author of Humanity 2000; the Street Farmers, a group of anarchist architects; Peter van Dresser;·and Sietz Leefland, editor of Small Earth, the Dutch journal of alter·native technology. Also included between the main sections of the book is a series of visionary drawings by the gifted illustrator Clifford Harper, evoking the spirit and practice of Radical Technology: 'how It could be'. These drawings, or 'visions' include a communalised urban garden layout; a household basement workshop; a community workshop; a community media centre; a collectivised terrace of urban houses; and an autonomous rural housing estate. The book ends with a comprehensive directory of the literature and active organisations in Radical Technology. This notes inevitable gaps in the book's coverage, points the reader to where more information can be found, and provides also an overall picture of a growing move·ment. Radical Technology: Food and Shelter, Tools and Materials, Energy and Com·munications, Autonomy and Community. Edited by Godfrey Boyle and Peter Harper, and the editors of Undercurrents. Wildwood House, London, £3.25; Pantheon Books, New York, $5.95; 1976, 304pp, A4 illustrated, index. Hardback·ISBN 0704502186; paperback ISBN 0704501597.

______________________________________________________________________ UC16: page 126

_______________________________________________ Undercurrents 16 June-July 1976 Page 127

______________________________________________________________________ UC16: page 127

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