GA Minutes Thu Oct 13 Year
Thurs Oct 13, 2011, Evening
GA passed Resolution:
United with the World for Global Democracy
On 15th October 2011, united in our diversity, united for global change, we demand global democracy: global governance by the people, for the people. Inspired by our sisters and brothers in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Syria, Bahrain, New York, Palestine-Israel, Spain and Greece, we too call for a regime change: a global regime change. In the words of Vandana Shiva, the Indian activist, today we demand replacing the G8 with the whole of humanity – the G 7,000,000,000.
Undemocratic international institutions are our global Mubarak, our global Assad, our global Gaddafi. These include: the IMF, the WTO, global markets, multinational banks, the G8G20, the European Central Bank and the UN Security Council. Like Mubarak and Assad, these institutions must not be allowed to run people’s lives without their consent. We are all born equal, rich or poor, woman or man. Every African and Asian is equal to every European and American. Our global institutions must reflect this, or be overturned.
Today, more than ever before, global forces shape people’s lives. Our jobs, health, housing, education and pensions are controlled by global banks, markets, tax-havens, corporations and financial crises. Our environment is being destroyed by pollution in other continents. Our safety is determined by international wars and international trade in arms, drugs and natural resources. We are losing control over our lives. This must stop. This will stop. The citizens of the world must get control over the decisions that influence them in all levels – from global to local. That is global democracy. That is what we demand today.
Today, like the Mexican Zapatistas, we say “¡Ya basta! Aquí el pueblo manda y el gobierno obedece”: Enough! Here the people command and global institutions obey! Like the Spanish Tomalaplaza we say “Democracia Real Ya”: True global democracy now!” Today we call the citizens of the world: let us globalise Tahrir Square! Let us globalise Puerta del Sol!
Follow it on Facebook from October 14th: http://www.facebook.com/pages/United-for-Global-Democracy/281998261825102
Discuss it on Twitter with the hashtag #globaldemocracy
Endorsements: Noam Chomsky,Vandana Shiva, Eduardo Galeano, Michael Hardt, Naomi Klein, Tim Gee, Nicola Vallinoto- Council member of the World Federalist Movement, ATTAC Spain, ATTAC France, Egality London, Egality Berlin, War on Want – London, Globalise Resistance – London, Uncut UK, Uncut Italy, DRY International, Gaia Foundation, Democracia Real – Argentina, General Assembly Puerta del Sol – Madrid, General Assembly London, General Assembly Buenos Aires, General Assembly Sao Paulo, General Assembly Manchester
(2011-10-13 Thu 19:12)
Welcome to Occupy Boston. This is our general assembly. The stacks are open.
Move forward, stay off the grass.
The general assembly is a time and place for Occupy Boston announcements and proposals to exercise horizontal democracy, to ensure each voice is heard....
(Facilitators introduce themselves.)
We always have a great need for facilitators. If interested, meet M-F 1700, Sat 1600. This is very important, please come see us.
My name is Dan, and I am a co-facilitator. Kate, your other co-facilitator. Tyler, Ellen, Angela, Brett?.
I would suggest you all find a Working Group that fits your interests. It is the best way to get your ideas hashed over before they reach this GA. It is also encouraged if you have an idea for a Working Group that does not already exist, to start one. This is where all of our voices can be heard, despite where you come from, whether you're poor, homeless, or racially oppressed. That's what we're here for. To let the silent minority^H^H majority be heard.
On to a review of the hand signals we will be using tonight. Wiggly fingers up, out, down, C w/ your hand is clarifying question. First finger up in the air, point of information. 2 fingers out in front, pointing at each other, point of process. Floor manager will come to you if you are opening a point of information or process. Point of Process: Most often, the person who has the question / point is encouraged to speak for eirself. I missed the symbol for a block; very serious, means I will leave the movement if this is not addressed. Louder: first finger up, up and down.
We're going to talk about what consensus means. Consensus is a process of non-violent decision. We encourage discussion, we don't expect everyone to agree. When a group nurtures a process of discussion and disagreement, consensus helps us make decisions. Consensus means we can live with it, not that we all agree.
Tonight on the march, someone got arrested. We're passing the hat for jail support---cigs, water. Great if you can support us in getting one of our own.
Safety is up first.. Some tips on safety. No smoking in the tents, no open flames, no campfires. This is a community, not a camp. This is an alcohol and drug-free zone. I would deeply appreciate if you would do it someplace else. Safety is here in yellow ponchos, vests, armbands. Don't leave anything in your tent, keep it on you. Be safe, everybody, and have a good night.
2200 Gandhi SPP Strategy
Heather w/ faith and spirituality, tomorrow 1200 Working Group meeting, please come.
- Drumming 0800
- Buddhist meditation 1100
- Buddhist discussion 1600
- Shabbat service 1700.
Point of Information: I thought I put it on the schedule, but I am leading a guided mediation and self-cleansing at 0900.
Point of Information: Tomorrow 1300 art jam at the sukkah down there (NE of General Assembly)
(2011-10-13 Thu 19:30)
If you want to speak, you need to get on stack.
Robert: I'm out here from Occupy Wall Street. I came out late Monday night, to make sure that you had jail support out here. We are having to leave tonight, since NYC is chasing us out tomorrow AM. We will be keeping the space, no matter what it takes. I have a number for you to call. It will be all over the internet. 212.639.9675 This is, I believe, the number for the mayor's office. You can also google # for first precinct. I want you to call so much that you spend all your time talking to secretaries, and that they realize that there are thousands if not millions of people who care and are watching.
I have the mayor's number again. Repeats #.
Zoe? Zoe? Not present. (Speaks later; see below)
Paul: I think we need to seriously consider the idea that we may be raided again, and that this camp may be raided. I think the mayor wants us gone. Whether we make a plan, or do whatever we need to do, I think we need to have this on our minds.
The individuals that attended the civil disobedience training that I ran should talk to others, form affinity groups, plans for defending this space. Work together, you will be strong enough to defend this space.
Katie: relevant to outreach tomorrow AM 90 kids coming , 5 volunteers to run tour groups. Need more. They are especially interested in interviewing protesters. 1030--1200. I'll be over near the media tent if you want to talk to me.
We've raised over $20k so far, bail fund and online general. We need to have a finance team to handle this above board. NYC has experience with this. Meeting tomorrow 1700. If you've been taking donations, please come to the meeting, we need to account for everything that we have.
Helen: We picked up lots of trash, tons of cigarette butts. Smoking is an issue, we ask people not to smoke at General Assembly, smoke away from others. If you are smoking not for sacred purposes, please don't flick butts on the ground, strip it, put it in a butt jar.
Point of Information: Agreed at previous. General Assembly that smoking area is the sidewalk. That still stands. Temp check? ???
Food: One thing food can always use is more volunteers. Almost always can use more people to serve, organize, wash dishes. Esp. wash dishes. Any time you can help, even for 1/2 hour. Getting more kitchens for hot meals. Need people to cook. I'm working on system to make clear when meals happening, when cooking happening. Also need cars to drive food around; if you have car / access to car, find me. My name is Lior. Also always need peanut butter.
Zoe: I want to form a group to develop a checklist. We'll put questions like : should we abolish electoral college, should we legalize marijuana, should we abolish corporate personhood. We'll have 3 days to vote on this. We'll have elections to determine what we stand for, and what we stand for the most.
Point of Process: My understanding is that this time is for individual announcements, and it sounds as though you are trying to make a proposal.
This is happening at 1400 tomorrow, show up if you want to.
Clarifying Question: Do you have a name for the group?
Poll taking group.
Time keeper: I'll tap you on the shoulder when you have 10 sec left. Please respect this process.
Norm? Noah?: Space on the wikispaces site to upload statements of purpose. You can email them to me if you like, or I can offer help working with wikis. firstname.lastname@example.org I'll have paper copies up on a banner here ASAP for comments if you aren't comfortable w/ computers or don't have access.
QC: have you decided, and it seems like you have, to run this process the way you described, and not form a working group?
We consensed on the process last night, I'm open to suggestions, meanwhile I'm going to move forward using the wiki for drafts.
David L: I was approached by a person a few days ago by a woman who started a program: "Adopt an Occupier", paired w/ a person, explain specific needs. Worked great for me, we have 100 people willing to adopt. Talk to me.
Jason: For all y'all who live in JP, benefit show Sat 2100 Ladybus, $5 door donation, proceeds back here, Midway Cafe. Washington St. between green st forest hills.
Closing stack; put yourself on individual stack (2011-10-13 Thu 19:50)
Anastasia: New Working Group, Occupy Everywhere. Please come find me. Idea to go volunteer in communities, not missionary, give positive impression. Screen Printed T-shirts, buttons, stickers. Anyone who does this?
John from media: This new tent (army green) is for...the new library. I started it with a good part of my bookstore. We need donations, talk to me.
Lutia: I come from China, international student has no right to vote. Looking for international students, foreigners, want to interview you. I come from BU, interviewing people from Occupy Boston.
James King: undergrad at UMass Boston. We need people to coordinate w/ bail deliveries at big protests & rallies. We bailed at 30 students from MassArt, other schools on Monday. We had $6k, but needed to transport by bike courier. If willing to drive, lend car for this purpose, talk to legal. Delivering by bike courier is not fun.
Stephanie: If any of you are coming down with a cold, a bunch of us are going to UMass Boston to sleep in he student center. Meet in the Medic tent at 2130.
(2011-10-13 Thu 19:55)
That concludes the announcements. On to proposals.
About to hand out the proposal. Please share with a few people around you. I'd like to encourage you not to read it until I start reading it so you actually hear the important intro.
I've been in direct communication with Occupy London. Statement, releasing Saturday all around the world. If we want to stand in solidarity with movements around the world. we should ratify this tonight. I'm occupying Boston, messenger for Occupy London. You can make friendly amendments, but a lot of groups have ratified this.
Written in coop with V. Shiva, Chomsky, J. Butler, others (see text) links with struggles around the world. Endorsed by ...
Statement, united for global democracy. (reads text)
Clarifying Question: Who has endorsed this statement?
Madrid, Sao Paulo, Manchester UK, one other?
being discussed by Occupy Wall Street, Athens, others?
Clarifying Question: is that online, URL?
will be starting tomorrow, not publishable before the 15th. For security, want first release simultaneous.
Please Mike Check before you start to speak.
Clarifying Question: Is the document saying we should abolish these institutions or reform them to increase democratic representation?
I cannot speak for intent of authors.
In regard to questions before, will not be online until 15 Oct ; says on paper
Please don't respond to others' Clarifying Questions, we will get to that
Are we allowed to take paper for ourselves?
If you have Clarifying Question, Point of Information, put hand up, wait for floor monitor.
This is not designed to say that I do not like the statement; I do. I wonder how it fits with our own process of developing a statement, and what it means to endorse it.
Point of Process; We're not discussing now, just hearing concerns.
When someone states a concern, it is a concern for all of us. the next stage is to offer amendments to address or ask if proposal makers want to address before they restate proposal.
Thank you; facilitators are brand new, learning as we go.
My concern is some of the vocab used in statement. Because we can't speak to the people who wrote statement, using words such as regime change offers a bit of an issue for me. Because I don't know what that really means.
Procedural info: should we not be tweeting this because it's secret?
in addition to last concern with terminology, issue with term anti-capitalism. In terms of this whole process that's occurring here.
Statements of support:
statement of support for doc, esp. because we haven't ratified any statements from any other assemblies, & this will be ratified by a number of international assemblies all around the world . I think it's important that we're involved with that too.
I want to address issue of regime change, and say that regime change means overthrowing the financial
Point of Process: we are taking statements of support, not anything else. Starting to sound like amendment
global financial structures , many based in the US, in solidarity with countries all over the world; and also here at home to reject DOJ, DOD, Congress, White House, and supreme court.
Point of Process: Can we not interrupt until someone is done speaking?
Point of Process may involve interrupting someone who is violating process.
I support this document, and am not upset in any way that it did not originate in Occupy Boston. We should support regardless of where it originated.
To my knowledge, document does not contain the words anti-capitalism. Please point out if I am wrong.
Please direct support concerns to proposal itself, not to other comments.
This movement would not be happening if not for people of Iran, Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen Syria, Israel Palestine. Our movement founded on theirs, we all know it needs to be a global movement to overcome the powers that are oppressing us all. therefore, we need to stand it solidarity with our global bros and sisters many of whom have died to get us here. We should not be too picky about language coming from people who are fighting far worse oppressions than we are.
Some of the criticism from those who may wish to see us fail is that we lack clear focus. As broad as this statement is, I feel it is helping us to gain focus & a clearer message of what we stand for. I'm all for it.
I support this proposal because this proposal in pro democracy & that is what this movement is all about.
i want to support this document precisely because it is connected to document of support & solidarity with indigenous peoples of Americas that we've already passed at Occupy Boston
I don't know what the authors meant by one word or another. I don't know exactly how this fits into our process of drafting statements of purpose and lists of demands. What I know, these words are exactly in keeping with what I believe and why I am here at Occupy Boston.
We're going to give proposal maker time to consider if he will restate what is proposed.
He says: Our process affects what is created here. This statement made elsewhere. If our process prevents us from supporting statements from others, that's not democracy, not being part of a global movement. There are very oppressive regimes in the world; many people want to overthrow these regimes. 'Anti-capitalism' not in statement, was in the email to me.
We'll run through the same process again.
Clarifying Questions? Points of Information Concerns?
(2011-10-13 Thu 20:26)
I'm an editor, and when I first heard that I just thought the fact that you use Assad and Qaddafi sounded too raging; I would suggest picking two other dictators for other sentence.
The concern is coming from my friend, who is an Irani immigrant, who doesn't think his English is good enough for you to here; but it is. That Iran is not in the list of countries. I want to make sure that is heard.
I forgot to say, how about Bush and Cheney.
Point of Process: That man's suggestion was actually a friendly amendment, not a concern.
My concern is that the Ethiopian dictator before the Egyptians, before the Syrians, there was an election, the regime was defeated, over 300 were massacred. So I demand that Ethiopian dictator should be included with the others.
I completely support the spirit of this document. I do have a concern about self-determination for local communities or First Nations. I don't understand exactly if there is a global democracy, how indigenous people might still have autonomy to self determine what their own needs are.
Statements of Support
I think that this is a wonderful statement, and that many people have worked on it who are quite knowledgeable, and I think we ought to support it as is.
Although every dictator in the world is not mentioned in the document, I think it is clearly implied that this is a global statement that includes dictators everywhere, even though they may not be mentioned by name.
There are other issues that this doc does not address, such as sexual and domestic violence, racism and misogyny. No document can say everything about how shitty the world is and who we fucking blame for it. So I think this one's dope and I support it.
I support this document as is, partially on the grounds of: if we don't support these documents, who's going to support us?
I had a concern earlier about what global democracy meant for indigenous populations and national sovereignty. I have realized that global democracy does not mean one global government, so I support this document.
What I said earlier about editing, I didn't mean to say I didn't support it; I do.
If we make any amendments to wording of document, will it make any difference? My understanding that the group that wrote this already wrote it; it's not our document. We should ratify it or not.
Sorry if I'm obnoxious here, but I do think we should consider what everyone is going to think about this document. I really felt, hearing the Assad Qaddafi repeated twice in a row would be giving in to what some people may say sounds too radical. The amendment is, in the second sentence, putting Cheney and Ethiopian dictator mentioned.
I believe that there has been so much discussion about this terminology, that we simply use more general terms. I propose we drop all rhetorical flourishes regarding specific people and places, and see how it reads.
(2011-10-13 Thu 20:41)
Can I get a temp check on concept of changing any language.
Point of Process: It's OK for you to get a temp check, but it's up to the facilitators to lead us to consensus vote.
Point of Process: A temp check is not a consensus. Consensus is a process, this whole process that we're going through.
If you have a block, you can bring it up. This means you are objecting based on your principles, and will leave the movement if it goes through.
Is this a proposal that you can live with? Did that look like consensus? Yes.
(cheering, and song)
(2011-10-13 Thu 20:44)
Paul: T check setting up ambassadors to other occupation sites. Would travel to other sites, share experience, report back. I'm going to try to do that in NH, but need more people. Find me.
Point of Process: Are you making proposals?
That was my first proposal.
- So it needs to go through the process.
(restates as proposal)
Apparently this is an announcement or formation of working group, we don't need to go through proposal / consensus process
Democracy is not clean, people, but we are doing it.
We have to make sure that we have quorum here. We need to have enough people who represent Occupy Boston to make decissions. TC. Everyone needs to participate. No one against.
Point of Information: Who decides?
General Assembly does
We think we have quorum.
Point of Process: As an intro, this gentleman, for his Working Group proposal^H^H individual proposal, which has 26 points to it, is going to ask the General Assembly to go through a slightly different process, because there are 26 points to it. Clarify if I'm wrong, he's about to ask if he can get yays or nays for each item, instead of going through consensus process.
QC: Can we get a sense of what the proposal's generally about before we decide on process?
Sure. Occupy Boston declaration of human rights and statement of support. I'm a teacher, background in physics, been working with SPP since the beginning. We've been working to build a declaration of Boston.
Point of Process: Is what you're about to do not a direct violation of yesterday's consensus on how we would make statements of support?
I don't believe so; I could be mistaken.
Yesterday at morning General Assembly I did a trial of this. We did y/n, it seemed to work well.
Point of Process: To help us out and make it easier for us, i think you need to propose a methodology before you go into the proposal. You are proposing that the General Assembly do something different. Maybe you need to make a proposal for the group to do that.
It's a declaration of human rights and statement to support that.
Will you please read the whole thing through and then go back point by point?
That's fine. Temperature Check?
- concern about process. Facilitation Working Group has been struggling with: when proposal of such import, so much text, we feel it may be appropriate to have proposal disseminated ahead of time, with a few days notice of when vote will happen so that as many people as possible who would like to have their say can make sure to participate.
- It seems what we are thinking is to pause, let him hand this out, put on wiki.
- My concern was a procedural concern that we were violating a process we agreed to yesterday by consensus. That these types of things---stmts we came up with---would go through democratic process by board and internet.
- I rescind process proposal, I'll just read it. This isn't something I just came up with. SPP has been working on this.
- QC what is SPP?
- Working Group takes into account concerns, issues. We've stayed up many nights working on proposals.
- There was a proposal last night that passed, saying (paraphrased) when proposals of such import come before assembly, they be published ahead of time on wiki and elsewhere. Many of us were not here, and the stream went down.
- That already passed, don't need to discuss now.
Point of Process / Information: decision to create wiki, no requirements on how we do proposals
TC on having this proposal published ahead of time, vote scheduled.
Why are we trying to dictate how long a proposal is before it needs to go on wiki prior to proposing it? We should all listen to everyone's proposal like we have been. He should not be the exception.
It seems that there's a consensus, almost, that in the future, beginning now, when there are long statements of support we will post them on the web and give people a few days notice of a scheduled consensus decision on those longer statements of support.
There are 16 lines directly from Universal Declaration of Human Rights; only a few changes to make gender neutral.
If we decided how to go about these things last night, in order to make progress, we shouldn't redecide every night. This should go immediately through that process. It's a waste of time to rehash.
Facilitator: first step of consensus process is he should read his proposal.
I really appreciate that.
(2011-10-13 Thu 21:09)
Point of Process: I do not believe that we have sufficient quorum to pass a proposal of this importance. While I respect the gentleman and the hard work that he's put into this, we had a lengthy debate last night in which we agreed on a process for proposals such as this. If we reverse our agreed on processes, how do we move forward as a group?
Do we have quorum? Temperature Check? Very few in favor. About half against. No quorum.
(2011-10-13 Thu 21:18)
This is a long proposal, hearing for the first time you need to weigh in on every point. This is why we have the wiki. We're going to move on now. (facilitators discuss process) Anyone with individual proposal is now on individual stack. You can still come up.
Kade: mayor has been making all sorts of threatening statements. This morning, maybe easing up. I think we need to have a discussion about what we do. We can't do this without a space. Proposals, discussions, marches, education. We saw that the city can come and arrest us all and put all our tents in dumpsters. I think we need to have a discussion about plan B and about expansion.
Ari: I was floor manager today. I am an Iranian American, really agree with movement, recently graduated from NE. One thing green (?) mvmt in Iran had, they had something visually binding that connects people, makes a crowd look together. Might incorporate a color, something that we can wear on marches.
Robin: This is a very general idea. On the T coming in tonight I saw a flier that just said Occupy Boston: 1900 General Assembly tonight. I thought that was a great idea, to advertise beyond all of us. I think we should make fliers, give to everyone at General Assembly to distribute. Would get idea out.
Rain: This ties in well with what Robin says, about informing public. We can write on money. You've got some change, a few bucks, going to buy some coffee. Write a msg on the dollar, pass it on. $ will pass through 100's of ppl in a week. You buy coffee, lady gives it to another person in a minute.
Patrick: I've been coming down here for almost 2 weeks now. One thing I've noticed is that eveyr kind of person you can imagine is represented. I'm a lefty, but I found people on the far right that I've learned from. This diversity is great, every one of us is here to make a point, to change something. I'd propose, when we're stressed out, we take a moment, treat eachother with kindness. People have come to me, said they didn't feel welcome. I've felt that way myself.
Zoe: The guy from Matapan talking about people being killed, all the realest of the real. Trans people, how many have AIDS, I've had to resort to sex work. We need to ally with people of color, they're not all homophobes. I had this happen to me today, somone on the T called me (some term I missed, like faggot). When you look at me, do you see a woman, or a man in human clothing? You see a human? Word.
We've been trying to figure out where to stash instruments and drums for parades. Stash at arts & culture, near the meditation tent. If you've got a march instrument, put it there. We can eventually have a rhythmic working group. Find me to talk about WG.
Bob: Not here.
Kevin: There was a discussion about expanding camp. It expanded that way, but shit happened. I got arrested. If they try to take this camp, I'm willing to get arrested. There's a space that way Menino had a problem with. Big hole in Downtown Crossing. Company won't build, won't sell. What about occupying there? They'll call the city, city's been calling them and not getting response. City can say "Fuck you". Not making a proposal now.
Isn't there a fence?
- Won't stop us
- But they'd have us captive.
- Could be protection. Cops sorrounded us up the road.
Ellen: We're getting through stack as quickly as we can. I've made announcement once or twice. 16th World Food Day. Would people like to organize something, maybe handing out food, raising awareness of GMOs, where food comes from corporate agribusiness, hunger. Important issue, about what people are doing in these buildings Talk now over there, blue corner.
Jen: we've all been together through thick and thin, we're fighting for the same thing. Can we bow our heads, or do what is spiritually appropriate to us? I have a prayer: ( reads passsage of New Testament which I wasn't able to record)
Nick: Quick announcement, class tomorrow at FSU 1700 (sic) on Constitutional Convention. Run by Theresa.
Eli: About anti-opression work. I'm really excited that tomorrow's General Assembly is anti-opression training. 3 or 4 groups working on this. Queer trans caucus, anti-oppression group. Also groups meeting outside this group to talk about coordinating outside work with Occupy Boston. I think it would be great if these groups would work together, maybe each send someone to anti-oppression group. Hope to see you all at General Assembly tomorrow.
(2011-10-13 Thu 21:41)
With apologies, I'm worn out and hungry, and not recording the remainder of the General Assembly. Maybe 40--50 ppl remaining?