1-14-2012 GJ WG Meeting MINUTES

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1-14-2012 GJ WG Meeting Notes

Attendance: 6-7
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Bookkeeping – Google Group Managers

NYC GA presence/official recognition as an OWS WG

Website

Tear Gas Teach-In report back

Monitoring the International arena

Occupy AIPAC – March 2-6 (Thu-Mon)

Conclusion

Bookkeeping – Google Group Managers

P1 – Proposal: on another list we give “yellow/red cards”. After 2 yellow cards you get a red card.
P4 – we’re not ready for those cards
P1 – Proposal: place the group guidelines in the email footer for all emails in the Google group. (consensed) (technical note: the setting should be available in the “Email delivery” tab of the google group management settings)
P6 – When someone steps over the bounds – we can send them a reminder
P5 – Suggest to add this role to list managers (consensed)
P2 – In this case, the list managers need to stay out of the discussion
Zaid and Udi will be group managers for the coming 4 weeks

NYC GA presence/official recognition as an OWS WG

Greg and Zaid will get on the agenda for the Tuesday GA and try to get our WG passed there.

Website

P7 – Jeanne and Becky are still working on that.

Tear Gas Teach-In report back

P4 – we had a meeting on Thursday, broke-out to sub-subgroups with people doing research on the govt’s role, and people taking care of outreach and other aspects of the event.
P5 – The presenter for the research part will be chosen from within the research sub-subgroup.
P4 – there are beautiful flyers and posters available as PDF files.
P7 – Global Revolution TV will livestream. There’s a shared google doc spreadsheet with task and schedule., local short-term outreach for the event, and larger regional long term outreach.
We need to contact the outreach/canvassing WG to help us with flyering for the event. Ezer will contact them.
P4 – we may meet one more time before the event.
P7 – Greg, Allison and Jeanne were at the Nigerian protest and got the contact for outreach.

Monitoring the International arena

P1 – Tammy set up inter-occ who have weekly planning and action calls. Whenever someone from a different country contacts OWS, they reach Movement Building, and then it gets lost. Tammy recommends that we figure out a way to use inter-occ, or take-the-square to coordinate with activists abroad. We should create a database of contacts in each country. [Quote from Tammy -threefold inter-occ strategy].  They can set up an international subgroup of inter-occ.
P2 – One of the things that MB thought we need, is setting up a method for communications. Inter-occ was set up in a distributed structure to avoid challenges of concentration of power in the hands of a few people. We can have a few people in inter-occ that would be international, who would be on all the take-the-square forums, and maintain contact with Europe, Africa the Middle East etc. There’s a tool CVCRM with 700 contacts, so whoever has access to it needs to use it with careful discretion.
P3 – GJWG taking this responsibility could just mean getting on the calls, instead of being a destination for emails.
P2 – Inter-occ is only a communications framework, it cannot help with specific requests; that’s what movement-building does.
P6 – Let’s start with a list of the people we know around the world, and local people with particular language skills, and connect them with people in the relevant countries.
P2 – We did a similar thing on the national level: i.e. who deals with requests from Oakland? We need to do the same within OWS: maintain a list of who inside OWS can respond to each request that arrives from abroad.
P5 – Reminder that we don’t want to collect contact information for activists abroad who  may be in danger.
P3 – There are a lot of emails that no one really wants to deal with, and we will get more and more requests. e.g. someone from Russia looking for a joint OWS-OSiberia convention. We need to come up with a protocol for saying “No” rather than just not responding. We should have a form email saying that we’ll bring the request up for the next GJWG meeting and then at the meeting consense on how to respond to the request in question.
P2 – Inter-occ will create an international subgroup. We should be on that it will provide us with a lot of information about what’s going on abroad. the other question is how to deal with incoming requests.
P5 – let’s first decide on GJWG’s role in the this field, and publicize this, so we don’t have to respond individually to each request with a form letter.
P2 – Proposal: 1. charge two people with getting on the inter-occ international team. 2. getting on the Resources&Response list. We need to outreach to strengthen GJWG to get more participation in the group, so that more than 7 people show up to meetings, and volunteer to fill these roles on inter-occ and R&R.
P1 – we should raise this to the Google group to enroll people in these roles. This is a great way to do outreach to outside groups and individuals for whom this may be the gateway into OWS.
P6 – We need to stay focused locally – NYC.
P3 – in our tear gas meeting on Thursday it was at the WRL offices, with people from Adalla, and it really reflected the enrollment of pre-existing local activist groups working together under the OWS “umbrella”.

Ezer will write the email to the group explaining the necessary roles in inter-occ and R&R.

Occupy AIPAC – March 2-6 (Thu-Mon)

P6 – Codepink is working with other groups on Occupy-AIPAC. Last year it was called The Move-Over-AIPAC conference, and was focused on Palestine. It included protests and rallies, including the disruption of Netanyahu’s speech in congress.
This year, because of Iran war mongering, the focus is not on the occupation of Palestine but is broader:
first day: there are 3 panels planned: 1-Iran- halt the push for war. 2 – Arab spring the US foreign policy. 3 – Palestine.
second day: actions.
Last day: lobbying members of congress while AIPAC is also there lobbying.

P2 – Clarifying question: how does Occupy change the scene of 25 years of lefty activism? We started with thinking of how we can change how these things are done. We suggested having a joint-action in all three countries (U.S.-Iran-Israel) – that would be a game changer.
P3 – Occupy can endorse if it passes the GA consensus. The other thing Occupy can do is create an action, create awareness and draw the spotlight. Direct Action – any group of people within DA have been authorized to create an action, so this needs to be brought to DA, rather than the OWS GA.
P1 – I like this, this is anti-AIPAC, not anti-Israel so it can fit the OWS narrative that is against the use of money in politics. I’m not sure of going through DA, but very often actions get done without DA. On second thought – it’s two months away, so going to DA might help.
P5 – let’s support this as a WG.
P4 – We can use this to introduce the larger issue of Israel/Palestine into the group, and then decide how we want to pursue this in the future.
P2 – let’s concense that we endorse it, bring it to the GA and try to pass it there as well. Design some kind of involvement, that avoids any kind of lobbying of members of congress.
P4 – there is criticism from the left about this kind of activism. it needs to be voiced. it’s more about imperialism, and not a single-issue lobby. Walt&Mersheimer’s thesis is that US foreign policy is ok, other than the effects of the Israel lobby. Chomsky says that it’s actually the dog that wags the tail (and not the other way around), and it’s a U.S interest to keep Israel in place; it has a role in the region and between the middle east and Africa. This is an internationalist, anti-imperialist critique. In guerrilla warfare a common tactic is to not attack the center (e.g. Baghdad in Iraq), but to attack the periphery. Grassroots, local action can be more effective, e.g. target Caterpillar and target local Caterpillar dealerships (Verona, NJ)
P3 – Direct democracy can mean going to congress just not as a lobby
P7 – Depending on what the target is, you can use different campaigns. With a consumer company you can target brand identity. If it’s a company like CSI, you can go after shareholders.

GJ WG has reached consensus and endorses Occupy AIPAC.

We will discuss in further meetings how we realize this support:

  1. Propose endorsement to GA
  2. Propose participation to DA

 

Conclusion

P4: Let’s set up time to discuss Israel/Palestine within the GJ WG.

Facilitator for next week: Greg

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