General Assembly Minutes 9/19 10PM

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Meeting Date/Time: 9/19/2011 / 10pm EST

Location: Liberty Plaza

Facilitators (F):



3.1.  Report Backs from Working Groups

3.2.  Announcements

3.3.  Agenda Items

Process Review/Opening Comments

Facilitator (F): We begin with a review of general assembly hand signals. People with questions on the signals are recommended to consult their neighbors about their questions.

F: Open the floor to check-ins from working groups.

3.1. Reportbacks from Working Groups

3.1.1.  Food—We all like to eat! We need a lot of people to help get food now. If people are interested in learning how to dumpster, please meet by the food station or get a primer with relevant information from the committee member. They are searching for things for vegetarians, vegans, people with Celiac’s, and everyone else. When they come back, they will need help sorting through those bags. Food will meet immediately.

3.1.2.  Media—Earlier they started to work on synthesizing different parts of their web outreach. If anyone has been taking pictures or video, recording sound, or Twittering, please contact them, so they can get everything together. We need to start releasing more of our content to the media. They also have been discussing the point that the media team is challenged because this body has not yet decided upon our message, our points of unity, our demands, or whatever else you want to call them. A lot of press want to know why we’re occupying Wall Street. And if we had those things, the press would know. And more people would come!  F: Media puts forward a very good and complicated point. Media would like us to create a list of demands and principals. At this meeting, the process of creating principals will be addressed. We will talk more about this after we’re done introducing working groups.

3.1.3.  Legal—they will be meeting at the first break which will be at 10AM.

3.1.4.  Schedule-makers—The schedule for tomorrow is as follows:

8AM morning circle.
9AM march till 10ish.
10AM-1PM open time.
1-3:30PM afternoon general assembly.
3:30-4:30PM closing bell march.
4:30-7PM open time.
6PM skill share on securing your online presence and setting up Anonymous and encrypted email.
7-9PM evening general assembly.

F: Thank you schedule-makers!

3.1.5.  Direct action—Two outcomes from their meeting.  Nonviolence amendment added to a previously mentioned march guideline. The original guideline was “do not instigate cops or pedestrians” but it was changed to “do not instigate cops or pedestrians with physical violence.”  Fixed schedule for tomorrow. It was mentioned that there will be an open-bell march at 9AM with a meeting around 8:50 around the front of the park. There will be a closing bell march, also meeting ten minutes earlier at the front of the park.

F: Emergency Announcement: The dumpster dive crew still needs more people. They are on the carpet by the food table.

3.1.6.  Privilege working group—Asked for show of hands of how many people participated. It was not very many. She proposes to open the next evening general assembly with another activity about privilege. It would be short. Today they talked about the different forms of privilege including race, class, gender identity, sexual orientation, and ability. They would like to add a lot more because they feel that many people here have been silenced, and these issues need to be addressed immediately.

Thanks to this awesome new working group that will affect the evolution of this community in a positive way.

3.1.7.  Comfort—They brought in some carpet. They have mylar emergency blankets. An organization working with the homeless is currently accepting donations, collecting money by the food. That is to bring the homeless here with us, primarily to pay for transportation so they can join us. If interested: 917-217-5715.

3.1.8.  Vibes—Let’s all think of something we did today that made us proud!

3.1.9.  Fun, Arts, and Culture—Piggy-backing on the vibe check, people are feeling good, but the energy seems a little low, which is understandable. It has been a long day, we’ve done a lot, we’re awesome, but we’re tired. But we still have the rest of the general assembly to get through, so everybody stand up! Wants to form a radical cheerleader group, so those interested should meet after the general assembly, figure out a time to meet, write cheers, and practice.

3.1.10.  Outreach—They had a good outreach meeting. They want to get more people here, they want to get more people of color here, more under-represented people here, and they have a plan to do that. They are making two fliers. The general schedule of Occupy Wall Street and a protest on Thursday. We are reaching out to unions and getting good feedback! They are also going to flier in the burrows. So if anyone wants to help, talk to point person.  Working on being multi-lingual. They will have a proposal to have translation available for non-English speakers on fliers and for future general assemblies. Printing out thousands of fliers, bringing them here at noon, so everyone can be outreach.

F: Emergency Announcement: Does anyone have flashlights or headlamps for the dumpster crew? If you have them, please bring them to the far corner.

3.1.11.  Tactical—Has been trying to work with the direct action committee to say that if anyone wants to plan their own separate action, come talk to them and legal, and they will give all the tactically-concerned information about whatever they want to do on Wall Street. Gates, streets, routes, all of that.

3.1.12.  Teaching—If anyone has skill shares they want to do, or longer classes because we are going to be here for a while, we can plan weekly or daily classes, so come talk to them. They are helping to organize time and space for different classes people want to hold. So if someone wanted to do a Spanish class, come to them and they can work with other people doing classes so there’s not overlap.

3.2  Announcements

3.2.1.  Announcement: (Mood supervisor checks in to see how everybody is doing, make sure they are OK.) So how are people feeling? Heard from media group earlier that we need to have a list of demands, so if anybody’s having problems trying to think of any demands, there is a list that they can look at for reference.

3.2.2.  Announcement: This evening after breaking into groups, we will be treated to two amazing musicians. Both Spirit Child and Evan Greer are here to entertain us!

3.2.3.  Announcement: We have a problem with health. We are all going to get sick if we don’t take care of a couple of things. We need to get enough sleep. There are a couple of things we can do to help prevent sickness in general. Do not drink alcohol, drink a lot of water, and eat as much raw food as you can. If you are feeling sick, these things will help you get better.

3.2.4.  Announcement: The Arts & Culture committee came up with a list of events. The first is there is a performance scheduled for when they break into groups—DJ Spirit Child. There will be a Thriller flash mob planned to happen on Wednesday. Choreography will take place tomorrow. If interested, talk to point person. They’d like to do an event tomorrow called the Silent Nonviolent 99%. President Obama and Sarcozi are going to Ellis Island tomorrow. We are trying to organize a group of people to place duct tape over their mouths with 99% written on them and go to the island. They will be talking about that during breakout.

3.3. Agenda Items

3.3.1.  Starting with the activity of this evening. What is so extraordinary about what we’re doing here together is that we are pre-figuring the world we want to create in the here and now together. So tonight we are going to break up into groups and come up with, collectively, our principals of unity. Our principals about how we make decisions together, we make food together, we make media together, our principals that guide how we act now, and the world we want to create. Ready!? Principals of solidarity! Break up into groups of ten to fifteen people. We will break for thirty minutes.

Point of process (PoP): At the end of the last general assembly, we tabled the discussion and said we were going to broach the issue of demand, issue message, by beginning this general assembly on that topic. We also said we would open stack on that topic, recognizing that it’s a very big topic and that it will require a process that was part of a thematic group that will involve interested. We are going to have a general stack, but we are going to break up into small groups first. It is true that agreement was not decided on. However, the facilitators are proposing something to the general assembly, and that should be made clear so that we can agree to it.

F: How do people feel about first breaking up into small groups, and then coming back and having an open stack? No one seems to be in disagreement. This is a process, and we are hoping to come up with principals of solidarity because we think what we’re engaged in here together is so incredible. Demands are a separate issue, and we will have to get to that together as well. For tonight, we can focus on what is most powerful and is why people are coming here together. So we ask that in small groups, collectively come up with six points maximum that you want to bring back to the assembly.

Clarification (C) – a demand is “what we want.” A principal is “what we stand for.”

Request for volunteers to convene groups around you.



F: Ketchup will notate all ideas. Afterwards, a working group will meet to compose a short list of principals of solidarity to re-present tomorrow at the 1PM assembly.  Group 1

Transparency for the community
Honesty for the individual
Symbiotic not parasitic relationships
Confronting our additions so we can overcome them and change into better people
We should not beg for slave labor
Knowing our audience so we can know who we’re speaking to.  Group 2

All people being truly equal and eliminating all negative “isms” from our culture
People before profits
Against government corruption
Direct democracy based on consensus
Debt is a form of bondage  Group 3

Taxing pollution
Purifying psychological and spiritual society
Love for money is the root of all evil
Banks into public control
Harmony with nature
The Bolivian UN proposal
Lazer’s manifesto
Good manners
Direct democracy
We are all one
Bridge the right and the left because the struggle is from top to bottom  Group 4

Much has been covered, but they will add:
Pro-education, institutional and otherwise
Personal responsibility, not apathy
Pro-humanity (including family rights)  Group 5

Free schooling as well as education in other forms but for the greater good of the world’s needs
Alternative to capitalism, starting with the de-privatization of everything  Group 6

Opposition to capitalism
Mutual aid
International solidarity
Accountability and transparency
Active empowerment of the marginalized and dispossessed
Community-based collective
Non-hierarchical organizing
Building revolutionary culture  F: All interested in forming a working group to consolidate these points into succinct principals of solidarity, please step forward.

F: We did amazing work, give yourself a hand! Now let’s welcome Spirit Child and Evan Greer!

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