NYCGA 12/11/2011 Minutes

Posted by & filed under Assemblies, General Assembly Minutes.


Date/Time: 12/11/11 / 7pm

Location: Liberty Plaza

Facilitators (F): Jason, Lucia

Stack/Time: Lucia, Stefano took over half way through. Minutes: Dara.

F: Well then, let’s use human mic for as long as we possibly can.

PoI: It doubles the length of proceedings.



86.1.  Agenda Items (Statement from the houseless group, Sustainability Budget proposal, Danny Chen Solidarity and Budget proposal, WOW proposal for Self-Defense Training Budget, Constitution working group proposal)

86.2.  Working Group Report Backs

86.3.  Announcements

F: Small group of facilitators. I have facilitated, this is Lucia’s first time so I’ll be taking a step forward and she is doubling on some of the roles that we usually have more people for. It will still work. We will make it work.

F: Anyone here for the first time? We will do our best to make the newcomers feel welcome. Hope you have an inspiring and interesting experience.

F: Overview of hand signals.

F: She’s going to be doubling up as stack taker. She will take list of names of those who want to speak. Progressive stack, encourage traditionally marginalized voice to the top and encourage them to speak first. Also doubling up as timekeeper.

F: Six agenda items.

F: Not sure if all the people with these proposals here.

Statement from the houseless group

Budget proposals from sustainability

Danny Chen solidarity and budget proposal

WOW proposal for self-defense training budget

Constitution working group

Working Group Report Backs


F: Purpose of Facilitation is to empower this group and ease our communication. We are in no way an authority. Only purpose is to help group make decisions in an effective way. Here it only costs patience and respect to have your voice heard. Tolerance. Pretty cold so we might do a little dance to get blood flowing. We want to create a safe space here to resolve conflicts and concerns.  Responsibility for creating safe space is not just ours it is everyone’s.

F: After agenda we will have working group report backs. Then announcements.


86.1.  Agenda Items

86.1.1.  Houseless Group  [incoherent statement, not a proposal]

F: Budget Proposal from Sustainability

86.1.2.  Sustainability Budget Proposal  Hi I’m Sarah and Winnie. Next Sunday we are having a holiday bazaar and day long skill share, there will be vendors and bartering and skill shares throughout day. This will include the original working groups from Zucotti like Library, Kitchen, Occupy the Hood, Alternative Economies, Think Tank and a number of other working groups close to 10. We welcome more to participate. What we are asking for is $900 for three needs that we cannot get through current donations. We have free space, tables, chairs, energy, so we are not asking for those. We are asking for the supplies required for each of the people putting on skill shares. Additionally, we are asking for $300 to put on dinner at 6pm and we would love for you all to attend. We also need money for general administration costs such as printing, signage and to pull together details of the event, the stuff we can’t get through donations or independent networks. To pick up for Sarah, we were here since the 17th of September. We are trying to host an event that will bring back the original working group that helped create this community.  We want everybody to participate in this holiday bazaar and daylong skill share to be reminded of the community that we built here in the park together. At the event will be a live working demonstration of the times up energy bikes. We are hoping to be able to serve and eat a holiday dinner together. That is one of the reasons why we are requesting funding from GA. Because we can’t seem to get an answer from the kitchen right now.

CQ: How did you try to reach kitchen?

R: E-mails

Nan: Try to contact Sam.

Sustainability: This is meant to be a Christmas party for the general public. This is a barter market, come bring items for trade. Its eliminating the money conversation. Something we worked on as a model while in the park. Not a lot of people participated, but it got attention from media.

F: Sounds like they made statement of proposal and we just started to have discussion, which sometimes works, but let’s try to come back to process. Open stack for clarifying questions.

Sustainability: To respond to the gentleman’s question. The event is being held at City Health Wellness in Brooklyn at 75 frost Street. off the L train at Lorimar under BQE. The event is being held from 1 to 9pm with dinner at 6.  Clarifying Questions  Nan: You mentioned that you did best to get printing and all the stuff you need and what I understood in spokes is we have groups for paper, printing and things like that. Why not through them?

Sustainability: To answer your question that is just one component of our needs. We have planned at least 5 other skill shares that need funding. Composting. [NEED TO GET FROM THEIR PROPOSAL] We will need materials for that.

Our workshops includes skill shares about alternative fermentation workshop how to be own plumber workshop how to make candles how to take things and make new cloths. Climate discussion. We will need to buy materials for composting gardening, tea and food. [NEED TO GET FROM PROPOSAL ALL THE WORKSHOPS]

F: Three more on stack.  My question is two parts: are you asking for food for this event?

Sustainability: So we are planning on preparing food for up to 150 people but we always welcome people who might want to bring  their own food so its okay if it turned into a pot luck.  CQ: I heard kitchen is getting $10,000 a week. I have a huge concern especially if this is about sustainability issues. I just dived a bunch of food and this could be used to eat and compost. I want more dialogue for food rescue and less about money.

Sustainability: This is why we are running numerous workshops on how to grow own food and keep fresh.

F: PoP: I failed to let the group know that we had allotted 15 minutes for discussion. We are now at ten.  My question has two parts. Have you created a breakdown of your costs and have you made that public because 900 seems excessive especially for feeding 150 people. Second question, if kitchen is a part of this collaboration why haven’t you reached us. They should be feeding everyone and you should be teaching us.

Sustainability: We are asking for $900. $300 of which was for the dinner for $150 people for a group out of kitchen to prepare that meal because we had not heard back from Kitchen and we have spoken to numerous kitchen sources. The remainder of the funds are for the specific supplies needed for the workshop teachers to be able to execute their workshop in a way that allows for the participants to not only learn skills but take away the things they made from that workshop. for example fermentation and candles require glass jars you can walk away with own candle that is yours as well as skills that you can share and recreate those candles in own homes and communities. We believe it is important to honor those who are willing to put on workshops by sourcing the supplies they need in order to teach us. We are not asking them to go out of their way to get these supplies on own because we believe that its our responsibility and we want to show due respect to the teachers that we are taking on getting materials needed so they simply have to show up and teach and allow you to learn and plug in. this is our event and we are trying to remove the burden from each teacher so they know what they need is already there. To answer there is a budget breakdown on

F: Extend for five more minutes? Let’s take a temp check on extending this discussion for five minutes.

PoP: Why don’t we take a take temp check on proposal. [positive]

F: I am scared about skipping through any part of the consensus process. We need to follow procedure. I suggest to the group that we move forward. It seems like it would be in the best interest to just move through the consensus process. It seems like it will only take a few minutes.

F: Concerns  Concerns  Nan: Concern is we just approved kitchens budget last night. You guys need to reach kitchen for that 300 dollars. Also we have papers and printing people working group and that’s what they focus on you guys should reach out to them and let us know what is the cost for paper and printing you say you need.  C: My concern is that we have a lot of talk in this movement about environmentalism and sustainability and it gets me when we talk about buying new things to promote sustainable causes for example the candle stuff. I think we should not be spending money off the bat. It would be more sustainable to reach out to working groups. I have about 10 glass containers for candles that I could donate. Have you guys tried doing any of these things I don’t think it is sustainable to spend money on brand new stuff.

Sustainability: We agree with what you are saying that was just one example we may need some of that money to come up with items that we can’t come up with at last minute. The Primary reason we are asking for funds is to buy the specific things required for skill share workshops that we cannot source amongst ourselves. there are some things we will have to purchase whether or not we want to be purchasing these things. We have gone out of our way to source every last thing we possibly can amongst ourselves. What we are asking for are the things we cannot find/ source/ get donated/ create ourselves and without these pieces certain workshops will not happen.  Since we already have Kitchen and Printing how about we just modify the proposal and just pay for supplies.

PoP: That is a friendly amendment and we are on concerns.

Sustainability: We have sent Kitchen four emails and not heard back but we have spoken to members of the group who are willing to volunteer and willing to work outside Kitchen if we support them with funding to purchase the food necessary to prepare meals for 150 people. The event is not limited to that amount. In response to printing concern most of the printing is being done in 50 Broadway office. There are very few things that need to be printed on larger scale. It is not necessary to burden the printing group with a few printing necessities. Most supplies we need are for administration like construction paper to make signs, paint, brushes, things we haven’t already found or used for all the marches.

F: PoP we are now at about 30 minutes, which is twice as long as we allotted. Lets take temp check even though I was responsible for extending the discussion. How do we feel about taking more time to discuss. We are almost through and we might be able to make a decision. Lets take temp check on doing friendly amendments. Positive. Open stack for friendly amendments.  Friendly Amendments  FA: I’m not sure if this is friendly, but I am wondering whether they are willing, whatever part of the money you don’t use go back to the kitchen.

Sustainability: Of course we have done so before in previous projects. If you can’t account for all funds with receipts you have to return money.  Nan: I would like you to modify the price you are asking and if you don’t want to do so I would ask that you postpone this until you talk to Kitchen and printing and other departments to see where they stand and then bring back to make fair.

Sustainability: Unfortunately, due to the size of the event and the expected turn out and press who will be covering this event we are working on a very limited amount of time so need to expedite this process.

CQ: What is timeframe for event?

Sustainability: Seven days.  FA: My friendly amendment is that you limit your food budget to 150 dollars try to outreach to kitchen and return whatever money because food you receive from kitchen.

Sustainability: We would be okay if we thought there wouldn’t be hundreds of people. We don’t want people to go away hungry asking for less than what we think we will need. Being conservative so that we can be creative in how we allocate.

F: Close stack for friendly amendments.  My friendly amendment before heard others was to not ask for $300 since Kitchen just passed huge budget yesterday so though things had changed in how they could help with food.

I think that Kitchen likes to cook for the entire occupation at once because we were raided we were also decentralized so Kitchen is reorganizing it might be difficult and challenging for them to only prepare meals for isolated event. Want to alleviate their burden went to outside sources affiliated with kitchen. Agreed to prepare food for us provided we gave them budget. We will continue to have streamlined and organized conversation with kitchen. It has proven challenging and we understand they were decentralized like all other working groups.

F: One more on stack for friendly amendments.

PoI: Approximately $10,000 budget passed was for providing three meals a day seven days a week and does not include outside events.

Nan: $2,800 for events those are taking place.

F: In budget for outside events.  FA: Two parts to this, one is I would request that if it is possible for you guys to arrange an in person meeting with kitchen tomorrow to determine just come back to Tuesday GA and separately I think we should include the part of Negesti’s amendment about if possible and you do end up able to acquire food from kitchen that you deduct from expected.

Sustainability: If we can find Kitchen and get them in a room to have discussion and we have been trying and spoken to many in person.

We have gotten in return was do you want to submit recipe. Additionally the reason why we want to work with the small group affiliated with kitchen is because of farmers march prepared meal in coordination with us that was fantastic. We want to give them same opportunity without burden of having to go through kitchen and reorganize situation because they themselves finding challenging internally to have a dialogue about this meal. Trying to help them get what they need to do bang up job for second time.

F: PoP people not participating in human mic.

Sustainability: We don’t think able to necessarily deal with internal struggles to execute one meal if we can get a hold and coordinate in small time period that we have using their internal budget funds we will gladly return money we are requesting. Any dollars we don’t use will go back.  Nan: My friendly amendment is about bugging Kitchen for cooking if you can reach out to take $300 from $2800 you can pay farmer doesn’t have to come out of GA money.

F: I want to acknowledge that I broke my own process by reopening up stack. As band-aid we will let them respond then try for consensus.

Sustainability: We don’t think we will get $300. They did not serve dinner tonight. People at 60 Wall Street are very hungry.

PoP: Side conversations not working with process. It seems that they are not accepting.

?: We would like to propose something.

F: Let’s take one minute and take a breath and we are going to get there.

F: Let’s come back. This is taking way too long but we will get through it. They have a statement to make and then we will move forward.

Sustainability: We are willing to work with the Kitchen. We are happy to and we are happy to work with strong women, happy to help you learn to close loop and be self-sufficient. Event we are trying to do not only symbolic but beautiful so we are asking not only your participation but for support.

F: Like to take temp check.

PoI: They have food, they’re coming from Brooklyn to bring food.

F: Like to take temperature on moving towards consensus. [Positive]

F: Any blocks?  Blocks

[Nan blocking until they talk to kitchen.]

F: Appears they have a block.  Nan: My block is I would be happy to remove block if they can modify the price. The reason for last night in this cold weather we approved kitchen budget and we have $2800 for events for kitchen. I think if you can postpone that until Tuesday you can modify price. I am going to fight this because wasting money for nothing. It’s not fair.

Sustainability: As we said before we are happy to accept the modification if kitchen makes food for us. Agreeing to take off 300 providing Kitchen makes dinner.

F: Proposer, restate bringing in friendly amendments they have accepted.  Short version now asking for just 600 for supplies that are needed for actual workshops to happen and a couple of things we have to come up with to run. If we do not spend just like in any other case we will return our receipts. We will hand back rest of the receipts. But Nan you have to make sure you get Kitchen to prepare food for at least 150 people.

Nan: Just give contact info and I will get it done.

F: Consensus is reached. That took way too long.

PoP: The assembled group has an interest in keeping to schedule but we don’t have ability to keep we rely on Facilitation and timekeepers to keep us on schedule. Allot x number of minutes for stack.

F: Acknowledge our responsibility in how long it took. We will be better for the rest of this meeting.

Sustainability: One more thing if you want to get involved and help with this event we are in need for barterers so if you have things you want to barter. Please send email to OWS sustainability at find info at Next Sunday.

F: We still have five more agenda items. Try to work more effectively before we all freeze.

86.1.3.  Budget Proposal from Justice for Private Danny Chen

F: Fifteen minute proposal. Few minutes for him to make his statement and for people to read info being passed out and then try to take four minutes for each section.  Hello, I’m Bob Lee. I have a few of these fliers which show Private Danny Chen and the issue that I am bringing up to you. I only have a few. What you are getting what you have in your hand is the proposal that went to the GA to be passed tonight. I will read certain portions. The members of OWS take this opportunity to join with Asian Americans and Chinatown community to march for justice for Private DC nineteen year old from Chinatown, we will march on 12/15. In Afghanistan on October 3rd he was found dead in an Army base with alleged gunshot wounds. The US military has told his family that he has been beaten by his superiors and suggested two racially motivated taunts prior to his death. He was buried on October. 13th and the family has still not received any report of the investigation nor explanation for this tragic loss. The demonstration will start at the 143 Chambers Street at the Army recruiting center and march to Columbus Park. The ninety-nine percent wish to demonstrate that the concerns and issues of all the diverse neighborhoods of NYC are part of what is real and important to all who are part of the OWS family, particularly Asian Americans. The broad diversity of Asians in the US who have been forgotten when the questions of justice and inequity are raised. OWS affirms our rich cultural diversity as assets and wants to emphasize that differences of race and culture will not impede but rather enhance the broad coming together for justice and change. I am open to questions.

F: Open stack for clarifying questions  Clarifying Questions  CQ: Your proposal is to issue a press release and schedule an event?

Response: Yes but also to participate  CQ: Is proposer aware that you don’t need GA to approve…

Response: I was told by GA and Facilitation that I have to do this.

PoI: Facilitation put this forth as a budget proposal. It doesn’t sound like it is a budget proposal. It sounds like the proposer wants our solidarity.

Response: It is a budget proposal. I was saving that for questions.

F: We are clarifying.  Proposal is for $200 to do a banner that POC will be responsible for and Direct Action will help us to do it. The banner will have OWS name in Chinese and we will use this banner if possible for further events.

F: Open stack on concerns.

F: I see no concerns.

F: Open stack for friendly amendments.  Friendly Amendments  You said you want $200 dollars for banner. We have working groups that do t-shirts and banners why not reach out to them. That is exactly what they do. Why should we give $200 to create banners when we have working groups that’s all they do?

Response: I did not know that. I think that because this is happening so fast that I can return the money if we can find people from these groups to help do that in Chinese.

Nan: Spokes tomorrow all will be there.

PoI: Not every Spokes meeting contains every group sometimes groups don’t show up.

F: Try to clarify what amendment was… if this group was able to contact printing and get this banner printed then they will return money.

F: Proposer will briefly restate and everyone can keep in mind that that amendment is now part.  $200 dollars to create a banner and for OWS all who are here to join in the march with Chinatown community 12/15 6pm on chambers street where we will march to Columbus park and we being there with our banner will help to strengthen the ties between OWS and the Chinese community.

F: Temp check on moving to consensus. Any blocks?  Blocks

F: One block.  I am blocking because twenty minutes ago like thirty people from OWS just now ate out of the dumpster. We need to worry about ourselves and feed ourselves before we can feed anyone put that on the banner in Chinese.

PoP: Block was not on topic of this proposal.

PoI: Has to do with greed. We are not a greedy movement nor are we a selfish movement we are an inclusive movement that includes all cultures whether they need banner or food. If you want food I also suggest that they let people have banners.

PoI: There was $10,000 allocated to Kitchen last night apparently.


F: In interest of all of us to follow process and respect for each other.

F: Our process here as last ditch effort when blocker not willing to rescind block. We move to modified consensus, which is a 9/10s vote. So we would like everyone here who would like to participate in that vote. We will both come around and when we acknowledge each other.

F: We have forty-six people total who want to participate in this. We will have everyone who wants to vote against to raise their hand. Please do that now. One person. Since that is less than ten percent we have modified consensus. Please give us thirty seconds. Jump up and down to keep alive.

F: Let’s bring it back. Is the proposer from Clear Cocoons Proposal here, please identify yourself. Not here we will come back.

F: We have four more proposals to move through. One is breakout so will definitely take time we alllot. The next proposal is from Constitution group. Dealing with a lot of issues so we are going to allot twenty to this proposal.

F: We had a request from WoW that in spirit of progressive stack that they go next and the Constitution WG good with that.

F: WoW next. Allocated fifteen minutes for this discussion.

86.1.4.  WOW Proposal  Hi I’m Alexis. WOW is requesting $300 for a three hour training course in self-defense and anti-oppression response techniques. The trainer will be Annie Allman who is founder of center for anti-violence education. The training is for up to twenty-four female identifying participates. This works out to twelve dollars and fifty cents per person. Training is schedule for 12/18, 4pm, part of the Tech Ops un-conference at Pace university. Don’t know specific room yet but will announce when we know it. RSVP at wwowsnyc@gmail. Encourage women from marginalized backgrounds to register. Offer skills for self-defense for sexual harassment. Empower enough women to then offer these skills to entire OWS community. We feel everyone should be empowered to stand up and protect each other from emotional and physical harm.

F:CQ?  Clarifying Questions  Nan: Trying to understand because you said a bunch of things got excited.

Restate. We want to have self-defense workshop need to pay $300 to train twenty-four women for three hour self-defense workshop.  CQ: My question is why should we pay any money for anything while this training or not when we have resources that the occupants the marginalized occupants can’t even use. Why should we vote for you to go to some paid training when we can use our free resources at 52 Broadway.

PoP: I do not see how this is related to this proposal when it could be asked about everything ever.  CQ: Is the $300 all that will be spent.

WOW: Yes.  CQ: Aren’t there many organizations who do this training? That you do not have to pay for simply because women’s empowerment.  CQ: I would like to point out that GA has already approved budget for un-conference at Pace and a stipulation of that approval is that all trainings at un conference are available to all of you so let’s not construe it as a way of exercising exclusivity because it is not.

WOW: To your point we have tried to find someone to do this for free and have so far been unable to. The organization that Annie runs did free training in response to government giving money back in November but we missed it. City council paid for. We would love for ideas if you know of someone.

F: Open stack for concerns.  Concerns

?: I can offer a free training and I have training on exactly what you need.  C: Why are we wasting $300 for three hours and only twenty-four women for self-defense workshop when we can get free training by doing more research. Have you tried to reach out to colleges and other places to offer free training? Rather than waste only 300 dollars.  C: My concern is if we pass this proposal we have then another marginalized group that won’t be able to participate in this training. They already said only twenty-four people then they said open to all which one is it?

WOW: To clarify we would like the twenty-four women who take the training to then train other people and that is what we meant by taking training to whole community only for up to twenty-four women.  C: My concern arose during this conversation when I found we had someone willing and able to teach. Can you if you are still willing talk to them if they are willing. Maybe expand. This wouldn’t cost anything.

PoI: The woman making offer admitted she has no teaching credentials.

WOW: The woman charging $300 is the founder of Center for Anti-Violence Education. She does this for a living everyday so she is an expert in this and that’s why we were hoping to get her to do training. Close stack for concerns  I won’t try to frame my question as concern. Are the twenty-four women already signed up and committed to do the trainings afterwards and how do we hold them accountable to do trainings afterwards?

WOW: The women are not signed up they are invited to sign up. We the women of OWS caucus are extraordinarily interested and very committed to sharing info with entire community. Come talk to us about accountability and we will do our best to make info available.  C: I am conscious raising concern as white man is questionable. However my concern is that while trained person giving trainings the people trained won’t be trained and credentialed and that perhaps getting someone who isn’t experienced for free might be more cost effective option.

PoP: Just so we stick to that, it sounds like a friendly amendment. Since this is end let’s move forward.  C: I totally recognize that trained person is great thing but since it is such a small group might be hard for them to teach  Friendly Amendments  My amendment is to find someone better to do for free to teach bigger classes. Get teacher to do for free.

F: Amendment changing

WOW: We will do research to find free trainers if we want additional trainings.  I guess this is a friendly amendment. If this person supports OWS shouldn’t they do for free? Have you asked whether willing to do for free. If I were a practitioner I would offer for free.

WOW: We have asked this person. She is starving like the rest of us.  FA: I have a friend, she is standing right here, who has over six years’ experience dealing with self-defense. If we were to use twenty-four women to take three hour class to then teach other people here who are unlicensed to teach why not just use person with six years albeit unlicensed.

WOW: The course is more than just self-defense also addresses skills to handle verbal and other forms of violence.  Two friendly amendments. One, that the women who take the training sign a pledge that they are going to pass these skills on to community maybe on calendar.  Two, that it be arranged with the teacher that she not only teach defense skills but also the necessary teaching skills which other women in our community may not have.

WOW: We accept that.  FA: My friendly amendment piggybacks off of what this gentleman mentioned earlier when we passed tech un-conference proposal. Specified that all events be open. If any spaces be left open I move that you let males to take part.

WOW:We accept that as long as progressive stack. One more friendly amendment.  FA: My friendly amendment is that to extent group member with experience is willing to work with the woman who take this course and develop some kind of self-defense working group that efforts be made to do so.

WOW: You are invited to join us and work together after to do best thing possible for our community.

F: Take temp check to moving towards consensus on this proposal. Before we do let’s have them restate with friendly amendments so we know.

F: Take temp check again on moving towards consensus with this proposal.  Blocks

F: Any blocks. We have three.

PoP: We are seeing one individual repeating a block. The block is an objection so heinous that they are willing to leave movement if proposal passes over objection. If you block and proposal passes any way you are saying I’m out of here.

F: To clarify, blocks are extremely serious. While idea is feeling of objection is so strong it could cause you to leave but you are not obligated to leave but then why are you blocking.

PoP: That is an opinion.

F: Let’s hear blocks.  Nan: Why are we wasting three hundred dollars on training when we can find free training somewhere else. We can use money for something really important. Stop wasting money. Ethical.

PoP: There are a lot of side conversations going on right now so I encourage everyone out of mutual respect to listen to each.

F: Also as PoP we have definitely gone over time for this. Take temp check to extend. Temp check on all blocks consecutively.  I’m concerned about safety of all occupiers. And focusing on just one gender.  : I’m blocking because where I’m from if you get caught up in a self-defense act you still get locked up. I believe that by self-defense is an action. This is a peaceful protest not karate.

WOW: This class is more than just physical self-defense. We agree that physical action is action. We also believe that this is not a waste of time because in many ways over every single day women are experiencing hostile violent behavior way to equip ourselves to handle peacefully and appropriately to protect self’s and protect movement by  equipping ourselves in this way. We will then be informed and able to share this information with entire community. Issues that women face are unique and not necessarily same as every person that is why we have a person who understands these issues coming to help. That said to address your concern we did accept an amendment to accept men as long as there is open space. Try to have progressive stack. If we don’t fill spots men will be welcome.

?: What concerns are women having that men aren’t in terms of violence?

Here we go, its cold. We are only half way through agenda. Crowd is fluid and perhaps we can have people next to us speak collectively focus and paying attention. Can we agree to focus?

F: We would now like to take temp check on moving towards consensus.

F: Same block. Since we have one block holding…

Nan: If you guys basically promise to do research about doing for free.

My block stands. Three blocks.

F: Interest of time we will move to modified consensus again. What we will do if you would like to participate in modified consensus.

F: Forty-three people who are going to participate in this vote, can I see hands for those voting against this proposal? Ten voting against. From that vote we do not have modified consensus so for now this proposal will be tabled.

[Controversy about whether all people who were voting. Overruled.]

F: Two more agenda items. The first is a proposal from Constitution working group, the second is from Occupy Farms which is a very large budget proposal so I’d like to encourage us all to stick with it because all issues are important.

F: We also have a breakout group from Vision and Goals. Jump up and down. Constitution working group. We have twenty minutes allotted for this discussion.

86.1.5.  Constitution Working Group Proposal  I’m Bob and I’m Judith. Our proposal addresses seven issues, each of which involves a violation of the constitution of the United States and each issue is having a devastating adverse impact on the 99%. We are seeking the endorsement of the GA for each of these seven issues. The first deals with bailouts of private corporations and foreign countries without constitutional authority. Second deals with Federal Reserve, which has no authority under constitution. Third, monetary system, which is without authority in constitution. Fourth deals with public debt most of which has been incurred without constitution authority. Sixth deals with violation of the principal of the public nature of elections that emerges from our constitution. Our constitution prohibits counting votes in secret which is what all electronic voting systems do. Seventh deals with undeclared wars meaning before executive can apply armed forces in hostilities over seas the executives must seek and obtain approval and authorization of our reps in congress. This is not happening so each of our foreign policies of meddling in foreign countries taking sides also violates constitution.

Our proposal addresses each of these violations what we want to do is submit seven petitions for redress, remedy these violations. Petitions signed by as many American citizens as possible. We hope 3-5% at least of our population. These signatures will be obtainable online along with each petition. That is our proposal. We are happy to entertain your questions. We want 15 million signatures because individuals and small groups cannot put pressure to reverse and stop. If we get signatures we together will serve on president and every member of congress and on state leg as needed. Asking you to endorse and support and also to endorse and support with rest of occupy movement asking them to look at these petitions and bring them to their Gas for consensus. We will have if we obtain consensus it is our intent to hold a press conference this Thursday which happens to be the anniversary of the bill of rights to our constitution that would be 12/15 and perfect timing and we will work with the media group to do this and any other groups we need them to do what they do best to reach all the different groups they talk to.  Clarifying Questions  CQ: I want to say that I applaud you and this is what I thought this movement was about. The question is will it also be on paper form in the streets for those who do not use computers

Constitution WG: Yes. We have some copies here tonight of the seven petitions. We have twenty-five copies. You are all welcome to them. If you mean people across America. Yes, we have to figure out how to do that. We respect all people whether they use a comp or not. If give us name and address any of you who do not use computers who would like a hard copy in a form that allows to enter name and county and state. We will provide that and need your permission to put online with other signatures.

PoP: We are taking too much time on hardcopies of petitions.  You said that you would be holding a press conference. I cannot hold a press conference, I don’t have money to do so. Where will press conference be?

Constitution WG: Our answer to that question is we are OWS Constitution working group. Working with Media group to discuss their procedures for alerting public that it is endorsed. We will provide press kit to media so they have all info they need to talk about this.  I am having déjà vu. It seems I’ve witnessed the same presentation previously. Address that and please tell.

Constitution WG: It has been under review for the past week. Teach-ins this week including today to answer any questions. Today is the day they are trying to reach consensus. We submitted a week ago.

PoP: That is a clarifying question not a PoP.  I have a question. I would like to know if you are aware of what is going on now in Congress regarding the bill 1031 and 1032 which allows the power to put in jail indefinitely whosoever they choose to do so.

Constitution WG: With respect there is a serious constitutional involved it is not one of these seven. We have chosen seven that we chose came from a consensus of the WG. Which seemed to be grievances that gave rise to the movement. There are many other violations of the constitution need to address. This is a beginning.  CQ: Are these seven petitions attached to any other projects doing or involved in?

Constitution WG: No they are not.  This text you have maintaining out of the work you did collaboratively.

Constitution WG: We are creating a source page before this movement came forth. There are a lot of people in America who have been concerned about violations in constitution. Some come from constitutional scholars and others who are aware. Unique to OWS is template of petitions never been used and many of the things the content come from things that have been done since Oct. since that group started. The source page shows who have contributed. Many Americans in and out of this movement and love the constitution and know it’s at the root of what is going on in America. Example of source of information contained give background. With respect to petition on bailouts in 2008 when it was announced that the treasury department had reached agreement to give AIG 85 billion dollars in public funds for private purpose of AIG without any constitutional authority or involvement of congress. One person when to court to challenge the constitutionality to challenge constitutionality. That was me. I asked court to prevent movement of money until constitutionality was decided. Three days later one more lawsuit filed by me against the 700 billion bailout without any constitutional authority. Both of those cases were joined by court and dismissed for lack of standing. Court said that my constitutional harm was no different from anyone else’s harm and therefore take it up with Congress. It is not a political question. It is a constitutional question. Have right for government to not do something we have not authorized it to do. Had we had a lot of people behind it, it might have made a difference.  I am excited to hear about your background because that was part of my question. Give us a little more information on your credentials, the history of sure redressed and potential impact if you are to receive required amount of signatures.

Constitution WG: Bob had a successful outer world business. Consulting to grow in CT and NY. Had a life change when 40. Went to meeting in small town and they were doing something suspicious he raised his hand, they said sorry no questions then spent 30 years defending state and local constitutions. One fo the first to wake up to do this. Tried to petition by himself with small numbers. 14 years. Gove ignored. Consequences devastating. He tried to stop. Never taken penny for defending liberty. I volunteered for 3 years. I left an outer world career and time for everyone to come together

The right to the people and obligation to the government and right to the people and were first put in writing on the Magna Carta and the right grew and got to the point in our country where until 1800s if we felt governement violating rights then the people could submit petition to government. Until 1836 the peoples petition unless frivolous submitted to congressional committee and they dealt with. In 1836 congress passed gag rule. Southern congress men didn’t want petitions from abolitionists. Gag rule to permanently table those petitions. Took 10 years for John Quincy Adamns to get gag rule. It has become the forgotten right until now.

Impacts. These are designed to defend, not amend the constitution. In our society people have ultimate power.  I am Facilitator since day nine in Alternative Currency working group and participating with Alternative Banking group. Intensive study over last few years of money and monetary system. Leading authority Thomas Grecco on monetary reform. I believe these folks are sincere and have integrity but they have something very wrong when it comes to money. I’ll ask to clarify. Are you calling for a return to the gold standard.

You will see that it calls for congress to create alternative currency with two guidelines consist of gold or silver coin and a schedule for gradual replacement of the current fiat currency with what. With gold and silver coin what the constitution mandates. Congress may coin money. Doesn’t give any other authority. It is up to the commission to work out the new currency. You don’t have to carry gold. You can have a credit card. Gold in your account.

You clarified enough for me. This is what I expected. You have a deep misconception. Reading from book. Many still believe money to be sound must be fully backed by gold or silver and redeemable on demand which is what you just said. This would be a step backward to a more primitive medium and unnaturally hinder exchange process. Limit amount of trading with disastrous results for economy.

F: We are having a good conversation. My co-facilitator Lucia had to go home so I asked Stefano to take stack.

My question I guess would be to the group. For the precedent of entire occupy movement endorsing something that is like a demand and if this were to go forward what is the plan for ensuring that the movement doesn’t go away.

PoP: It has been five minutes temp check on continuing.

F: Temp check on actual proposal is mixed. Conferring with proposers.

F: Since temp check was mixed asked them how they felt about tabling. They agreed. They wanted to make a few statements about how people can get the concerns they haven’t been able to express tonight to them. We will hear from them and then move forward.

Constitution WG: Grateful for support we received. We went to the effort in the last week to call for this review and discussion who brought up issues that have ample opportunity to come and work these through. Point is we will return on Tuesday. We invite you to be in touch We will arrange to speak. We urge you because of the support there has been to dialogue and have a discussion to make sure both sides understand each other.

Pop: Lots of cross talk. I would encourage everyone who feels passionate to have that discussion not in front of everyone. Gotten info about where to contact them. Going to move forward.

PoI: Email and dialogue with these two individuals is not transparent. I read all this info and I want an opportunity to dialogue.

F: Since proposal being tabled and this group is open to input encourage all to have a discussion with them if you would like to continue.

F: Next proposal is from Occupy Farms. It is our last proposal. We are all very cold. Allocated twenty minutes for this proposal.

86.1.6.  Occupy Farms Proposal  Can you guys hear me or can I just yell. Occupy farms GA proposal move out of the parks and into the farms. Local farms have heart of economic response. Offering 56 acres in upstate ny and expansion farms in mass VT. Plenty of cleared land apple orchard, well bordering streams and NY watershed. House and future greenhouse site. Create occupy farmers market at Zuccotti and all over city. Yearly harvest festival. Teachable sustainable horizontal farming model and place ows on global frontline of fracking debate. We encourage all to come to next meeting Sunday 5pm at 60 wall Tuesday dec.13 farm trip. We already created on self financed recon meeting. Asking GA for 15000 dollars for future trips and immediate projects until we become self-sufficient.

PoP: Please let them make their statement. It shows respect to all when we listen. (continued) Sorting scrap heaps into salvageable. Constructing a winter. In order to do this need to pay for tents tarps and sleeping equipment beyond what we can find in SIS – $2,000. Greenhouse – $2,000. Truck work vehicle – $2,000. Transportation – $1,000. Work gear – gloves shovels – $1,000. Food for three weeks until sustainable – $?. Medical and full time – $300.  Amount of money to establish farm.

Just fund for farm group to access, not necessarily use full amount. The occupy farm accounting group will have written process for exploring donation, repurpose or recycled goods or do it yourself goods. We pledge not to access funds until established in transparent manner.

Chris: Too much money to be dealing with right here. We need to help ourselves. It sounds good.

Occupy Farms: We have only been doing this for a week. We are trying to support the movement.

?: I went to Newark. I like the proposal but you won’t be growing until spring so I’m thinking that this will be a good proposal to bring at the end of winter. I’d love to produce food. There is five acres in Military Park and we will hopefully get that to council and we have parking deck owned by state. I like your proposal, but not until spring when it will be necessary. I need a military tent there and until I can get a tent there I will block everything.

F: Before we continue have a PoP.

Pop: I don’t know if there is a question there.

Occupy Farms: Demolishing farm and building greenhouse. Most important is to bring model. Hope to have own funding within month. We think this could be as big or bigger than OWS. We wanted to go to you first rather than the outside world.

?: Your group wishes to start a farm, what do you know about farming.

I know nothing about farming, just trying to get it started. We have a biologist onsite. Networking with smart minds. I am trying to help the relationship of the family who owns the property. Would be happy to show the credentials of those in relevant fields.

F: You have like six blockers and only twenty-five people here. We have a bunch of people who will block, can you table?

Suggestion from clarifying questions. It appears lot of blockers. Let’s get a temp check on the proposal. Straw poll on how we feel on the proposal.

PoI: The Kitchen working group a budget for $10,000 a week was approved.

F: Try to hold together.

PoP: Those people who blocked didn’t get a chance to propose friendly amendment.

F: Let’s get check on moving forward. Only two minutes left. Might I suggest that we continue with clarifying questions.

I want to know if any possibility to do this in NYC.

F: We are having a lot of side conversations right now. Can you repeat?

I would like to ask them if they have any possibility to have this project be in NYC.

Occupy Farms: Come to our meetings and propose further resources.

F: wanted to take opportunity here to take thank Minutes taker.

F: End of agenda items. There is one more agenda item. It is very short. It is a breakout group.

86.1.7.  Vision and Goals Discussion  I know you’re cold. We will continue your visits through next Saturday at which point we will consent on final vision statement. If not we will go back to the drawing board for you. We are handing out some sheets. Please take 5 minutes right now. We have pens. Take a quick look and we will take sheets back with comments.

F: We still have time allocated for working group report backs and announcements. Any report backs? Please come up to Stefano.


86.2.  Working Group Report Backs

86.2.1.  Comfort: Opened a satellite location at two places upstate and around the corner. We have office hours from one to four in the one location. We have office hours from 3 to 7 in park. Monday through Thursday. We are hopefully going to get volunteers to offer our services 7 days a week. If you would like to volunteer please send us an email. There is an orientation that is very brief that we ask all our volunteers to go through. We have a facebook.

86.2.2.  Chris: If you block this only blocking self. I want to give PoI. We are about to lose our churches. Unfortunately it is because of our bad behavior and we need to correct ourselves and not me correct. You correct yourself you know what is expected in your house when you go be on your best behavior because you wouldn’t piss on your floor.

86.2.3.  If want to be part of reform structure working group. See me and give me your email address.

F: All we have for working group report backs. Now move on to announcements. See Stefano.


86.3.  Announcements

86.3.1.  I don’t know if this has been announced but it wouldn’t hurt to announce again. There will be a rally and march on 12/18. 1:30 at Foley Square and the march will be from Foley to Zuccotti and we will have an early GA on that day at 4pm at Zucotti focusing on immigration. Help spread the word.

86.3.2.  We announced our existence in 2nd week of October when we started feeding people in the back by class war. I am Uncle Bob I started the chow hounds which is the friggan food group. Those of you who lived in the camp might remember us from such things as the giant bucket of Chinese food and the day we came in with shrimp lobster. We do not get from trash we go straight to restaurants and ask. It is the food they throw away anyway. We see it as reclaiming recycling redistributing. I just want to make sure that everyone knows who we are because we have had a bit of a problem getting restarted since they came in and chased us out of the park

Hi guys that was fun. The realtor will be her tomorrow. 11:30 am to basically take us to the building so we can make a walk through so you can see the building and voice your concerns and all that good stuff. If interested send Send email with contact info to get on list.

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