(Two proposals were presented but not voted on for lack of quorum.)
This is the transcript of the Occupy Boston GA for Sunday evening, November 6, 2011.
Transcriber: Tim Smith
DISCLAIMER from your friendly transcriber: I know there were many important and nuanced things said at this meeting, and I tried really hard to report everyone’s words exactly. I know I missed things; people talk faster than my fingers move! Also it’s cold and my fingers are frozen! This represents a good faith attempt at a transcript, but it’s not an exact transcript.
A few abbreviations I’m using, apart from standard abbreviations (i.e. ppl for people, Sat for Saturday):
POI--point of information.
POP--point of process
OTH--Occupy the Hood
temp check--temperature check
Facs-facilitators, meaning the members of the facilitation working group, who brought an important proposal before GA tonight.
Gandhi--the statue of Gandhi in Dewey Square, a common meeting space in camp
FAWG--financial accountability working group, same as Finance.
“Floor,” “Participant,” “Crowd,” and “Person” are used to reference people whose names/roles I did not hear, or who did not identify themselves by name or role. There isn’t actually a distinction intended, between, say, “Floor” and “Crowd,” your friendly transcriber is just inconsistent. Most people so noted were located in the assembled crowd, not on the stage.
Occupy Boston is a non-violent movement using a consensus-based decision-making process. Facilitators are here only to help the GA as a group follow the process. We ask everyone to learn and use the hand signals. We invite you to set an example for each other and the world.
[standard hand-signal process introduction]
Working group announcements
Labor outreach (Tom): We are doing on-going work. There are planned actions this Wednesdsay, November 9. The Boston Globe has reported expecting thousands of people to show up. Hands off social security, medicare, medicaid. March is from Dewey Square 10:30 AM, rally 11 AM Wang Theater, 270 Tremont St. Boston. March from Dewey Square 6:30 PM, rally after at Symphony Hall. Regarding foreclosure defenses: there is a national conference call taking place to organize around this issue. Trying to organize Dec 6 national Day of Action against eviction and foreclosures. Anyone interested in getting involved, please talk to Tom. We’re working on a proposal for an emergency defense network to help defends people in their homes.
Media: There is a public meeting of the media group on Wednesday at 7 PM. Those with media backgrounds are especially welcome.
Ideas: Monday we’re getting together here at 7 to talk about ideas and values for Occupy Boston.
Ariel: You people are great, I love you. I’m working with an author’s group that’s working on a message. We want your feedback. Ask me for a copy or for more information.
Monica: I’m a college professor and I believe in public education. So I do teach-ins here. Tomorrow, Monday, at 6 PM by the library we’ll be talking about the Putney Debates. 300 years ago, people got together at Putney Church and had a debate about democracy. Go to reallypublicschool.com for more information.
Elizabeth: I feel we should have an animal safety group. Also a survivor’s advocacy group to help assault victims. If anyone wants to join either working group, see me.
Michael: I'm an organizer for tenants of government subsidized housing. There's a mass rally on Wednesday. Senator Kerry is a member of the super-committee. It's going to destroy social security and medicare if we can't stop it. On Tuesday there is a Boston election. We are going to occupy the polling places to stop these cuts. We hope to collect thousands of letters about this and deliver them en masse. Please see me if you're interested.
David: I'm part of organizing Occupy El barrio. We're meeting at 6:30 PM Friday at 19 Meridian St, Suite 4, 2nd floor.
Jeremy: This Sunday there is a big meeting in Portland, your support will be needed.
James: I am a candidate for Cambridge City Council. Yesterday there was a memorial gathering for a president of SDS. One of the founders of SDS (Al) visited Occupy Boston and is here right now, and interested in talking with others to draft a new Port Huron document. Vote for me on Tuesday!
Working group proposals
Quorum check: Do we have a quorum? No. We will let working groups present their proposals but we will not vote on them tonight.
Facilitation: Facilitation has had a proposal in the works for weeks but it keeps getting bumped to when there's no quorum. The proposal concerns the submission of proposals to GA. It's on the wiki and there are copies in the library.
Alternative banking (Liam and Sam): We represent the sacred banking working group. Our proposal is presented as a choreographed argument. [choreographed argument follows] We must create a new role for money in our political and social lives. The new economy we are proposing is rooted in projects that revitalize manufacturing and relocalize our food supply. We must create and govern our own banks. We propose to create a new currency. Our money will decay over time, so that it will be wiser to share it than to hoard it. We propose that OB endorse this. We propose that each of us every day give the gifts that are most needed - a hug, looking into someone else’s eyes.
CQ: Are you working with some of the established progressive finance groups?
Answer: Not yet, but we’re anticipating doing so.
CQ: Do you expect your proposal to work within the current system?
Answer: We expect our currency to initially work within the system, but eventually provide an alternative model.
Occupy El Barrio: Friday night we had our first meeting. We want to ask if OB will fund a Web site for us. We want to register a domain name. We will raise this next time we have quorum. [Monica volunteers to pay!] Next meeting Friday at 6 PM, location to be determined.
Tony: Social security and medicare need to be fixed. We need to separate the good ways of fixing them from the bad ways.
GA is now over! (8:03 PM)