Mailtda's non-commercial use clause, was: Re: [matilda] crisisof consensus

Chris Malins chrismalins at
Thu Nov 10 12:16:14 GMT 2005

I have suggested in the past that it would be possible to set up a 
microbrewery/mega-home brewery in Matilda, although people seemed not to 
take me very seriously, and I haven't made a concrete proposal because I 
wouldn't have time to run the whole process myself. But it would be very 
easy to turn out 100 odd pints a week if we got going and set aside 2 
small secure rooms (one warm one cold) somewhere, and even if we were to 
use brewing kits it would cut costs and reduce our input into the 
exploitative alcohol industry, plus allow us to show support for 
relatively local sourcing. If we brewed properly from grain, we could 
locally (and probably organically) source that, but we would need heat 
source eg. calor gas stove so it becomes more of a safety issue, and 
would need a lot more time.

Plus it would mean that we were producing real ale rather than 
chemically enhanced rubbish, and could actually develop a brew unique to 
Matilda, which might be fun.

On the other hand, if we were to start selling it on a regular and large 
scale basis there would be legal issues not entirely different to 
selling beer without a license from the cafe collective, but we would be 
an unlicensed brewery.


atw wrote:
> All of the arguments against the Art shop have been based on
> principles rather than practical reasons (like we don't have the
> space, it wouldn't work etc.).
> The principle is that we don't want the Matilda space to be used for
> private financial gain.
> The thing with principles is that for them to mean anything they have
> to be applied consistently to all cases. If they're not then they are
> worthless.
> If Matilda were to agree to the above principle then we have to apply
> it consistently. That means anything sold in Matilda where some of the
> profits were used for private financial gain should also not be
> allowed.
> The most obvious activity that should cease as a result of the above
> principle has to be the selling of alcohol. Private profits go to: the
> shop it was bought from, the distributer, and the manufacturer. In
> fact a whole bunch of people from shop assistants to lorry drivers and
> corporate directors profit (privately gain) from our selling of
> alcohol.
> Unlike the artists who might sell their work, some of those in the
> alcohol chain are properly exploited in the Marxian sense. Surplus
> value goes the owners of the means of production. So we could say that
> the selling of alcohol is actually far worse than the selling of
> locally produced art. Alcohol entails exploitation, art direct from
> artists does not.
> Therefore if the Art shop is stopped on the above principle we must
> also stop the selling of alcohol too. The only source of alcohol
> permissible would be that brewed by people who make no private
> financial gain at all - though I admit finding such a source might be
> tricky.
> Ideally we could make our own. But we don't live in an ideal world. I
> like Tequila. I'd need an ethical source of cacti to start with. Maybe
> the Zapatistas can send us some.
> steve
> PS this is basically what Steve was saying in Monday's meeting and has
> yet to be refuted.

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