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Old 23-07-2012, 22:43   #46
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Re: Sailing Commune?

I'm not sure if I totally understand the concept, but it sure would be nice to have sailing people cruising similar routes at similar times and keeping an eye out. I remember how frightening it was when we were almost boarded off Suriname and despite many VHF calls on 16 had absolutely no response ... ended up shooting flares at them ... felt alone in a big , dark sea. I think 'flexible informal groups' all looking out for each other and assisting no matter what the need or situation would be tremendous. I wonder how an On-line community of cruising and live aboard sailors would work? That way each member could share routes and dates planned and and have others join in for a common departure date. Of course there will be faster and slower boats. I know there is a willingness on the part of sailors to share info and belong to a greater sailing community ... I mean one just has to look at the many 'cruisers nets' such as they have in Grenada and Rodney Bay (St Lucia), where sailors chat on VHF for an hour every morning, asking advice and receiving answers etc. etc.
We have a few friends doing what we do and usually we chat to each other about future cruising plans, but it is so informal that we never actually end up sailing together.
Sure ... I think there is a need for these things! I also think it would be good for sailors to 'have a voice'. So many rules and regulations are tightening up on those who want to be free and I think there is a need for communities of sailors to 'be heard'.
Perhaps the sailors who were assaulted in Panama would have stood a better chance had they had fellow sailors to respond? Worth looking into ...
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Old 24-07-2012, 11:10   #47
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Re: Sailing Commune?

Utopia   [yoo-toh-pee-uh] - noun - any visionary system of political or social perfection.

Is this the definition of utopia that we are working with? Because the whole principle of cruising/sailing/boating in itself would suggest that this is unobtainable, right? There is always and ebb and flow, a yin and a yang.

How about my thoughts of a 'brotherhood', like that of motorcycle gangs? Not the ones that get together and destroy things for the sake of 'making a name', but those that are actually a positive contribution to society, with fund raisers and such. And while I was thinking again along those lines, maybe this 'tribe' could be set up like a 'Moose' or 'Elks' or 'VFW' lodge, in that there are different chapters in individual states (to start) and then like 'Moose International' it could branch out and have an international presence as well. HELL, it could just as easy start in the MED or EU and branch its way to the US. It could even work with organizations like the Red Cross. There were probably cruiser out there that were close to Haiti or India during their crisis that would (and could) help but didn't have the direction to do so....maybe.

So, the tribe could contribute directly to the society and self by:

1) providing fund raising per local chapter and complete tribal needs.
2) provide fund raising for local charity help.
3) provide a network of cruisers in the form of Newts Nomads (annual north to south,and return)
4) a network of coastal cruisers that could be established by local chapters in major bodies of water that are local to them.
5) lower costs can be negotiated with wholesalers (growers) and even lower marina fees could be negotiate during off seasons....if not year around....by the local chapters as well.

This is just a start of what the list could be. And I don't think I need to spell out the impact that this could have on an individual sailor that is traveling the east coast and has an established network with fellow 'tribesman/clansman' at port to offer a helping hand, if needed, upon arrival. And I understand that there is the 'theory' of this already out there....but when I have called on such organizations I was seldom met by anyone from that organization.

We had an 'indecent' where I am at and now the local Maritime Museum is looking to raise money for a rebuild. I am sure (well, I would sure hope!) that the local West Marine and the marinas on our creek will give substantial help....but this is just another example of how this 'tribe' could help society. Even if it was in the form of helping to remove debris that will be cleared so that a new museum can be built.

Fire destroys Deltaville Maritime Museum/

And I am sure that there are plenty of these incidents that happen world wide that involve the sailing community that a 'tribe' of this nature could do. There is a wealth of intelligence on this forum, and I am sure that the message I am conveying is being received well.
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Old 24-07-2012, 11:54   #48
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Re: Sailing Commune?

This (providing structure so one could live cheaply and contribute to on land society) is obtainable and perhaps more desirable than forming a seperate community. I agree that we cannot sail in isolation, even with skills we are dependant on a larger society for raw materials, food etc. So a belevolent brotherhood makes sense. If a group sailors rafted up and became a collective for cheaper food and sailing goodies- that would be pretty good. Just don't call it Newt's Nomads....
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Old 24-07-2012, 12:24   #49
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Re: Sailing Commune?

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Originally Posted by monstads View Post
I don't believe the goal should be utopian, nor terribly altruistic. For the commune/tribe/clan , the barter network thing is just another way to form bonds , provide benefits and keep the lazy ones at bay..
+1

Capitalism works because it harnesses the power of human self interest - I feel the "trick" would be to make it in everyone's self interest for the Tribe / Clan itself to prosper by creating a "Them" and "Us" way of dealing with the world - by making the Tribe / Clan the "us". I don't mind putting into a pot if I know that someone else is not simply siphoning it off - and the bigger the Tribal pot the better it is for me .
.
In regard to valuing the Boat Buck, could have a set price / hourly rate for a list of tasks which take into account the skill level involved. Won't cover every eventuality (for that there be negotiation - or simply lending a hand), but would form the backbone of the Boat Buck.
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Old 24-07-2012, 12:30   #50
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Re: Sailing Commune?

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And here I am DOJ! You see, I have this addiction...in that if I don't partake every now and then my friends and family stop associating with me, it is a nasty disease called SAILING! As it stands right now, I am a 'weekend sailor' and so I tend to be on the water every weekend. This weekend I sailed with a Muslim in the Chesapeake Bay! To me that is like hitting the social bingo. (I will talk to anyone at the marina, and introduced myself to 2 new families that have showed in the last week, but I really enjoy the diversity of the human race.) We hoisted his genny on the new rolling furler and then took her out to see how she acted. He has two daughters the same age as mine, so while we were out trimming sheets and such, the girls were doing their girl things below. GREAT WEEKEND!
Point taken .

Dunno anything the US side of things when it comes to tax benefits - but for me a no brainer, if da Gubberment wants to defacto give me money for setting up the Tribe / Clan in one way over another - whether that be via an LLC or by wearing funny hats on a Sunday - then would be rude not to take the money (before someone else does).
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Old 24-07-2012, 12:37   #51
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Re: Sailing Commune?

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How about my thoughts of a 'brotherhood', like that of motorcycle gangs?
Hell's Sailors?

The basic concept I think has merit (without of course the negative image. or needing to be obese ). The Tribe does need a structure - but one which can cope with lots of flexibility.

I think we may have invented......The Yacht Club
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Old 24-07-2012, 13:43   #52
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Re: Sailing Commune?

Sorry I dont have time to read all the posts in this thread right now But will this eve. This is right up my alley and wish to be included.

I have often thought of an ongoing cruising group that pools resources and such. As it is today the world is my commune. I rarely go into an anchorage where I dont either know someone or I meet someone new. It almost always ends up with shared meals and sundowners. If either party needs help with repairs or advice it is always there. I know that is on a small scale.

Would I ever consider living on a boat with 6 people? Hell no! It may contradict the commune idea but I enjoy my solotary lifestyle. I do not need religion or vegan yoga forced down my throat. That is what most think of when they hear commune.

A sailing commune should not have rules each member should be self sufficient there should be no commities or governing bodies. Basically anarchy. So I guess that is not a commune at all??? How about a full time cruising club that bases themselves near each other. A loose group of friends that each other can count on? Sort of like taking a forum like this but using real life instead of the digital world.

I am currently in the Miami, Fl area on my way back to the keys. It would be nice to have a few people to buddy boat with me(mind you I am a bit slow). I am planning on going Florida Bay to the Tortugas on the return I will go outside through Florida Straights. The plan is to write a complete cruising guide to the Keys. It could be a group effort. If anyone is interested in testing the "commune/club" concept let me know. Just mind you my boat is slow and the cptn drinks his rum after the sails go down.

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Old 24-07-2012, 13:50   #53
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Re: Sailing Commune?

A tribal/clan membership tattoo should be required, doncha think?
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Old 24-07-2012, 14:31   #54
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Re: Sailing Commune?

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For that I am thinking the annual Migration route, including (for a US originating Tribe) back to the US - both as somewhere folks can make money (with no visa problems - and the money earned goes further elsewhere) and also for family reasons. Whether that be Winter. Summer or another time of year...could possibly even commercialise the annual migration south (and back north?) by taking along folks (newbies?) just for their first big trip (before waving them bye bye!), and possibly also selling them "how to live on a boat" etc etc courses (kinda like a mini / more informal ARC / Baja?).....all that on a Tribe basis (i.e. money goes into the Tribal Treasury).

I could see an attraction for folks with kids onboard (shared child care / schooling and simply freinds) and possibly those of more mature years - as well as those on a budget that does require topping up now and again to maintain an endless cruising lifestyle.
That's how I'd go about it. First I'd figure out the route myself - for a year or two. Then I'd invite other like minded cruisers to tag along, being straight forward about the pace, the philosophy, lifestyle, etc. I think selecting for people who have compatible goals to join in something that has already been planned is much easier than getting a group of people and then trying to address all the differences, trying to find common ground.

I did the whole backpack around Europe thing when I was younger (Then New Zealand) - It was easy to fall into other groups of like-minded travelers, forming a bit of a community of sorts. The whole traveling on trains, the group kitchens of youth hostels, etc. were very condusive to that.

I think getting a community of boaters presents more challenges. The nature of boats is that one will likely be spending most time with people on the same boat and every boat is different. If you have 10 boats, and one has problems, does everyone stop to wait?

I know it's not what the OP seeks, but if I wanted a floating commune, I'd do it on a single boat, in much the style of the golden age of exploration, with 20-30 people on a single boat. There's much more incentive and logistical ease to a group of people supporting life together on one boat, than on ten different ones.
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Old 24-07-2012, 14:43   #55
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Re: Sailing Commune?

This may boil down to simply semantics, but I think the entire sailboat cruising community is a "commune". At least it is a "community" in the sense of the word before the word defined just a collection of houses.

Perhaps I too am a little on the "fringe" of society, in that I find nothing unusual about the lifestyle you envision. Nor would the majority of the cruisers I have met.

What I can tell you about children raised in the cruising community is that they are some of the brightest, best balanced and engaging kids I have ever met.
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Old 24-07-2012, 15:32   #56
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Re: Sailing Commune?

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A tribal/clan membership tattoo should be required, doncha think?
Ha ha! There is a group that already does this and it is the Yacht Club. They give you a flag to tatoo your boat and then they have an outing twice a year and two dinners a year..... I am thinking of something a little more .... solid. But don't get me wrong, a Yacht Club has its place, but not as beneficial to the live aboard that isn't in the same marina all the time.
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Old 24-07-2012, 18:08   #57
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Re: Sailing Commune?

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A tribal/clan membership tattoo should be required, doncha think?
Be careful of what you ask for! I have a floating tattoo shop here
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Old 24-07-2012, 20:50   #58
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Re: Sailing Commune?

Certainly, "required" was a poor choice of words. Those with an "affinity with the Clan" might like a body mark commemorating the experience. I don't yet have one, but who knows what the future holds. Well, it does appear to hold, wholesale chipping of animals and humans that participate in dominant culture. Living out and dropping out will be even more attractive then.
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Old 24-07-2012, 21:00   #59
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Re: Sailing Commune?

We have a couple of friends that we frequently share purchases, etc. I guess we are heading in that directions. Having been an old Haight Ashbury Hippie from 1967, I am intrigued by the idea, especially since I have a skill that is tradeable (barterable), having been a RN for many years in the ER and the OR. My husband has carpentry skills, among other things. We are older, but not extinct!! I really like the idea of a group of boats living in a communal manner.
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Old 24-07-2012, 21:06   #60
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Re: Sailing Commune?

four pages and you guys haven't really mentioned "sharing".

trying to invent a currency or exchange regime will never work. The whole point of communal living is sharing everything. you can't barter with work or time or trade. It doesn't work.... That's called something else

I lived in a hippie commune for one summer. It was a place where like-minded people could just show up, starting cutting down trees and building their own house. Everyone chipped in the work. Once a house was established, it was expected that you grow food of some sort, do your part in the daily chores, contribute by way of helping others, etc... dinners where compiled from everyones garden (whatever was ripe and ready) and served at a single table. As opposed to being divied up...
Nothing was divied up. If you had an extra t-shirt, it was expected that the guy missing a t-shirt would wear it. It was a share and share alike community.

It worked well until people that were not as like-minded attempted to join. then things became complicated.

when people start expecting something in return for their work, problems happen. there is no way to have a "commune" without 100% sharing.
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