It was great to hear that Will Self, Mark Thomas and Sian Berry were protesting against the corporate takeover of public spaces. The line that Will Self used was monetising space. He argues cogently that the corporate gloss that private ownership brings is not welcomed by all, he would prefer a less homogeneous space; he argues that the right of freedom to assemble and protest has been removed and therefore with it the freedom of speech. The concept of commons is removed under the corporate monetisation of space.
That deep connection with the land is not just being lost but it is being sold to the highest bidder. It is being disinfected with a message that says ‘you can cross my land but you must behave as I tell you to’.
The idea that government can compulsory purchase the land back is crazy. The monetisation of the land means that the owner can argue that it has increased its value, a direct loss to the government. The loss of this space is akin to the enclosures of the 18th century.
We are part of the land, part of all land. Attempting to own the land is the same as owning us. I will not be owned.
Sanitising the land takes the realities of life from it: real life, i.e. life, is no longer present on this land. There is no appeal in lifeless land other than a desire to bring life back to it.