For the greater good (almost satire)


A couple of people have mentioned communes recently as a way to survive a toxic Conservative government. Join me, if you will, on a short journey into a commune based on our current social and economic values.

Cams and Tess own a large property on a generous amount of land and decide to open it up as a commune.

They invite people to apply to join and this is how they decide to run it.

Members will all work to sustain the property and the life of the commune and produce whatever they are each able to do.

Everything produced in the commune will be kept and stored by Cams and Tess and each member will be paid in tokens, which they can exchange for rent and the fuel, goods and food they produce.

Everyone will be paid based on a graded skill level, menial workers will be paid a menial rate whilst skilled workers will be paid a higher rate. A fair days work for a fair days pay, based on a meritocratic evaluation of everyone’s skill level by Cams and Tess.

Of course this will not apply to Cams and Tess, as they are the owners, the communes treasury and keepers of everything the commune produces held in trust for all. However, because Cams and Tess would like to see the commune flourish and prosper, a small levy will be added to every item sold back to members over and above the actual costs of their labour and production. This will be called a Value Added Tax.

There will also be an income levy, or tax, this will cover health care, welfare in case of sickness and a pension fund which Cams and Tess will invest to add additional funds to the tax pot, keeping a percentage for themselves for their personal benefits.

Because members involved in food and production will produce more than their individual needs and the needs of the commune require, members will hold market stalls and sell on the excess to the broader community and even export, where there’s a market. Income from marketing will be kept by Cams and Tess, as owners, as it is in excess of member’s and the communes needs and requirements.

It is Cams and Tess’s responsibility to ensure that enough of the wealth of their commune trickles down to secure the daily needs of members, through their token wages, the rest will be kept by Cams and Tess for their generous philanthropy is helping members lead good and productive lives and for providing them with security and all the comforts that accrue from members diligent hard work.

Everyone will live happily ever after, especially Cams and Tess for their boundless generosity and philanthropy, who decide to move out into a mansion built by members as a reward for their largesse and visionary genius and who will henceforth, by their own decree, be known as Lord and Lady Largesse of Deeping Pocket.

Every year the members are granted a day off to lay on a party and have a day of celebration for Lord and Lady Largesse, at the latest of which Lord and Lady Largesse announced that the system of social benefits would have to be scrapped as they could no longer afford them, but, sadly, taxes and VAT would have to increase to cover rising marketing costs.

KOG. 20 May 2017

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