Minutes of Oct. 27 Meeting

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60 Wall Street, 8 p.m.

Attendance: Anne, Jackrabbit, Sam, Steve Thompson, Tim, Casey, Ben, Ahmed, Stefan, Jesse, Scott, Kay.

Jackrabbit gave an overview of process.

Tim and Steve reported that Kay is drafting a proposal for funding for an Ipad for the Voting Experiment. Anne suggested another source of revenue could be a grant, if necessary. Jesse suggested more discussion on our needs. Tim said the proposal for the funding for the Ipad will be online so we can all look at it (Kay was not in attendance at this point in the meeting). Further discussions about overall funding will be held.

Jesse reported on the viral campaign for a Constitutional Convention to revise the Constitution to get money out of politics. Scott started a Piratepad to discuss possible unintended consequences. There have been debates on whether a single amendment or an entire Constitutional revision would be better. The group is not ready to talk to other organizations. There will be a meeting at 1:30 p.m. on Sunday at 60 Wall St. to further discuss this.

Jack stated he is participating in conference calls Tuesdays at 9 p.m. with occupations around the country and others can participate.

Electoral Reform Proposal: Tim categorized the 13 items we’ve been discussing according to which have been non-controversial, which have been the subject of questions and which have been the subject of concerns. Anne added a concern about open primaries. Previously concerns were brought up about ballot initiatives, term limits and the second clause of the campaign financing item. There is a Piratepad on the forum where everyone can add comments. Jack suggested we try to submit this proposal to the GA within 10 days. Anne and Scott suggested campaign finance reform seems to be a key issue that should be emphasized and perhaps elaborated. Scott suggested footnotes. Casey wanted to emphasize term limits, even though this item was a concern for others. We broke up into small groups for further discussion. Tim collected comments for further revisions.

Jack suggested we need a Mission Statement. He, Anne, Jesse, Steve (?) and Sam will work on it online.

We discussed how to deal with new members. There seemed to be consensus that new members should be allowed to participate. We discussed what to do if a new member blocked a proposal. There seemed to be a consensus that this could be dealt with as it comes up and would likely only be a problem if a faction of some kind attended en masse to disrupt the group. There was a suggestion of some type of orientation for new members. There is a daily meeting at the square for new members which can serve this function. The possibility of asking new members to arrive early at the Thursday or Sunday meetings to talk to existing members was mentioned. Anne brought up the fact that we have two memberships, the in-person membership and the online membership which is much larger. Some people who have joined online do not live near NYC. We agreed to further discuss this at a later date.

The SpokesCouncil proposal from the Facilitation group was discussed and people were encouraged to go to the GA Friday night.

We approved a statement of support for Occupy Oakland.

Robert, who was not in attendance, wants to film one of our meetings. Jack brought this up for discussion, but retracted it after deciding Robert needs to be present to present this proposal. A temperature check regarding being filmed revealed mixed feelings.

Jack announced he will be speaking as an individual at the Platypus Society panel.

We may ask someone from the Facilitation Group to facilitate our Sunday meeting.

Adjourned shortly before 10 pm.

One Response to “Minutes of Oct. 27 Meeting”

  1. Robert David STEELE Vivas

    This is very helpful. The Russian TV crew went to Oakland and I immediately backed off when I heard there were reservations. I will be there tomorrow, have 40 copies of Tim’s summary (two pages back to back) and 40 copies of my proferred statement and act (two pages back to back).

    I am hugely interested in the group’s thinking about something for the GA in 10 days, and I will come back to NYC as many times as necessary to be helpful in this regard, while actively participating in this forum.

    In my view, Occupy is at a crisis point and must achieve a consensus on what will get it through the winter. I was very impressed by the US Day of Rage focus on electoral reform, that was inspirational to my comments on Russia Today TV that have evidently circulated widely (as has my Open Everything keytone and my Hollywood movie B roll), and here is how I see it:

    1) By pushing out the proposed day for a universal statement of demand to 5 January 2012, I have respected the process needs and giving OWS all the time in the world to reflect on this.

    2) By moving this toward the GA for promulgation to all Occupy groups, I believe I am proferring something that will hugely relieve pressure on Occupy encampments. Ralph Nader in his Quo Vadis piece suggested that OWS start focusing on the homes and offices of individual Senators and Representatives. I completely agree with that, and with John Robb’s suggestion that any violence against OWS by police be counter-attacked with flash mobs that wreak non-violent havoc all over the concerned city for a few minutes and then vanish into thin air.

    In a nutshell, my idealize scenario:

    1) Group accepts the blending of the group’s ideas as summarized by Tim, and the ideas I had from Nader and others, and uses that for further discussion, keeping in mind the group’s own desire to forward something to the GA within ten days.

    2) Group considered recommending to the GA that the two page proffer (draft statement of demand and draft electoral reform act of 2012) be promulgated to all Occupy groups not only in the USA, but around the world. I was thrilled to see Egyptians rallying for OWS yesterday, that photo leads my rolling update tonight. I have put Tim’s document as well as my two document in full text online at Phi Beta Iota precisely because I think we are a model for all others now that we have woken up to the reality that the 1% has been screwing all of the people all of the time for the past 30 years.

    3) I personally want to take my MGB around to every occupy site and participate in electoral reform discussions. I also want to help build the BigBat, and if someone can introduce me to the community bank I will come back into the city from my mother’s in Katonah where I will overnight, I believe OWS is capable of raising no less than $500 million in the near term (100 million times $10 each) and that the community bank is the perfect place to be the host for BigBatUSA.

    4) God willing, on 5 January 2012 every occupy group will publicly read the statement of demand and post the electoral reform act of 2012 on their web page. Before that date Senators and Representatives will have been pressured to co-sponsor the Act in this congressional year, and to commit to voting for it in the next congressional year, or be impeached, recalled, or hounded from office.

    5) God willing, by 15 February 2012 the act will be passed, and there will be no turning back. If it is not passed, then all the little general strikes between now and then should have refined a nation-wide capability to carry out a general strike that could last an entire summer. OWS has ONE CHANCE to make systemic change. I believe electoral reform is the key to making that change. I strongly support the constitutional amendement as an end goal, but believe that electoral reform is immediately achievable and essential to going toward the amendment.

    See you all tomorrow. I see 3 pm confirmed, I am assuming 60 Wall Street.