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Nobody claims first election victory.
feature by Si Mitchell 10.05.01
Blair may be ready to bring his heartland flock of property owning country folk back to the polls, but one corner of Britain doesn't give a monkeys what the election outcome is. The people of Easton in Bristol have already declared their community an autonomous zone and are planning to reek havoc on the entire electoral procedure come June 7.
On May 3rd Easton was asked to go to the polls and decide who should run the inner city borough: Nobody or the Council. "Bogus as it is, May 3rd was the day the Council's mandate ran out," said spokeswoman Nora Nobody. "We posted ballots through 5,000 doors and have received enormous local support for ejecting all authority from the community."
Stickers and posters declaring; 'Nobody Cares', 'Nobody will make a Difference' and 'Nobody is the Black Candidate' appeared on every lampost and dissused shopfront during the last month. On May 3rd, a righteous Nobody motorcade was mobbed in the streets before the ballot returned 145 votes to Nobody and five to the council. (One staunch anarchist even spoiled their paper in the vote to ban all authority.)
As the result was announced the autonomous zone of Free Easton was declared, a stirring rally was held in the Community Building and the first Easton Popular People's Assembly was initiated - it's first task was to give the invasive police presence waiting outside its marching orders. "Your services are no longer required," said one elderly resident as she handed a confused looking officer a large sack. Easton Councillors John Kiely and Muriel Cole were also fired in their absence.
The following morning, anyone entering the zone was greeted by the legend 'You are now entering Free Easton' stencilled across the road at every entry point to the community.
"Every spoiled ballot paper is counted and the numbers are announced on polling day" said Nora Nobody. "Today was a victory, but one June 7th we're encouraging people to go to the polls and scrawl Nobody or None of the Above, or something more offensive, across their ballot papers again.
As both the ward's councillors were elected on less than 1500 votes (and everyone gets two votes), Nobody campaigners have calculated that if 750 ballots are spoiled then the autonomous zone is set in stone.
When the votes are counted central and local government authority in Easton will cease permanently, said Ned (another Nobody). And the community assembly can get on with the task of adressing the needs of the people. No more sham democracy. We're taking the power back, and we encourage other communities to do the same.
An openly rattled John Kiely (Lib Dem Councillor for Easton) elected on less than a tenth of possible votes, dismissed the May 3 ballot as "a silly prank". Though he made sure his home had police protection in case the community decided to exercise some summary justice on its would-be leaders.
Meanwhile in Eugene Oregon, America, a group of dissident anarchists (eh? - ed) are endorsing the re-election of their city's ultra right wing Mayor, Jim Torrey. Although we don't buy into the scam of democracy, we encourage others who believe, to vote for the greater of two evils. If not for pure comedy, at least to make it clear to all what type of Fascist system we live under.
They believe Torrey's policies of brutal policing and corporate pandering have been instrumental in creating the city's inevitable and beautiful anarchist backlash, and his re-election can only swell their ranks.
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