General Assembly notes 10/15

Seattle General Assembly 2011-10-15 18:35

  • Minutes prepared by: Phil Mocek
  • Audio archive: http://www.archive.org/details/OccupySeattleGeneralAssembly2011-10-15

Camper comments

  • time 18:43
  • anonymous
    • have camped here multiple nights over past couple weeks
    • think this is very important movement
    • we're building community
    • we're having true democratic process on the streets of every major American city
    • establishing government
      • run by the people
      • for the people
      • not controlled by corporate demands
  • Maria
    • has been with food tent since day one
    • resigned yesterday
    • rescinds resignation
  • anonymous
    • we've been here for over two weeks
    • happy to see numbers grow from 30 to 500 – 1000
    • let's stand up strong with heads high and declare that we will not move
  • anonymous
    • thanks young occupiers
      • who stay here all night
      • woken up by cops every hour
      • being non-violent
      • representing all of us
  • anonymous
    • first time participating in GA
    • proud
    • will be here
  • anonymous
    • here for same purpose as you
    • here to support
    • here to tell you I believe this system will crumble if our voices rise
    • if we fight, system will conquer us
  • anonymous
    • need you to stay so we don't get arrested
  • anonymous
    • strength in numbers
    • need you to come every day, stay every night
  • anonymous
    • tomorrow, noon – 8pm, Sing Peace Gypsy Wagon for peace and global harmony
  • anonymous
    • when moving among tents, look down every ten seconds to ensure don't trip
  • anonymous
    • dislikes people getting high as soon as the tents go up
      • reflects poorly
    • camps here overnight
    • requests people refrain from getting high in tents
  • Carlo
    • doesn't want corporations to destroy our planet
    • doesn't want us to destroy our planet
    • carry a metal spoon with you to eat with
    • has more for others to use
  • anonymous
    • camping here as often has he can
    • misses this place when he's away
    • learning what it means to occupy and to be a democracy
    • when we say we need you, we mean it
    • learn what it means to occupy by spending some nights with us
  • anonymous
    • has rope to tether tents
    • please tether tents so it will be harder for police to take them down
  • anonymous
    • has been here since day one
    • there were 20 of us in front of federal building
    • came with five-year-old child
    • lost hope, went home
    • came back, joined working group
    • conflict over where to sleep
    • left
    • came back with sleeping bag
    • sat across at coffee shop
    • stay with this, do what you must to bring others
  • Karen
    • here because she wants to be the voice of her three-year-old grandchild
    • please be a voice for him and all the children
    • this movement is not what democracy looks like
    • this movement is what democracy looks like when it's no longer working for all the people
  • Ronnie
    • have at least 1000 people here
    • Mayor and police have said that we're not allowed to be here after 10
    • tents banned
    • umbrellas banned
    • attacked protesters
    • arrested at least 40 protesters
    • it's important for people to stay to 10, 11, midnight
    • need hundreds here
    • in NY, Mayor tried to evict
      • thousands of people defended the park
      • police failed to evict
    • in Portland
      • police tried to evict
      • came back with 600 tents
      • police failed to evict
    • in order to succeed in protesting Wall Street, what happens here will effect national and global movement
    • if we defend our right to protest, people around the world will rally
    • everyone should stay here, bring three more people
    • down with Wall Street
    • tax 1%
    • tax big business
  • anonymous
    • has been camping here for past two weeks
    • has seen large, diverse group of people communicate on many subjects
    • has seen different religions, nationalities, ethnicities, gather and talk
      • it's beautiful

Working group reports

Hip Hop Occupies

  • new group
  • for engaging
  • partnered with other groups
    • 206 Zulu
    • Hip Hop Congress
    • Occupy the Hood
  • networking and engaging a new community

Legal Observers

  • legal observer training tonight at 9:30 p.m. by 5th and Pine sign
  • legal observers will document police actions to ensure protesters rights not violated
  • cannot be involved in protest
    • no chanting, no signs, etc.
  • will be here to keep protesters safe
  • email ryanragona@gmail.com

Demands Working Group

  • presenter: Lia
  • walking around to collect people's demands
  • attempting to assemble accurate reflection of people's wants

Outreach

  • presenter: Jaimie
  • if you want to be involved on the website, there's a forum and outreach section
    • in there is a flyer link
    • can print and hand out
  • presenter: Hudson
  • meet daily at 4pm and after GA
  • anti-racism training tomorrow (Sunday, October 16) at 3pm
  • presenter: Doc
  • commends all who are hearing our voices
  • I'm from logistics
  • meet any time you want to see me
  • I love you all

(Unknown)

  • presenter: J.C.
  • involvement has been largely Web-based
  • is student, cannot afford to leave home much
  • thousands of people support us and wish they were here
  • we have obligation to deseminate information through social media

Internet Communications Working Group

  • presenter: Danica
  • need more people
  • to get involved, e-mail occupyseattleict@gmail.com

Accountability Working Group

  • presenter: Maria
  • just formed
  • meeting at noon tomorrow to draft XXX how to hold individuals accountable

Arts and Entertainment Working Group

  • getting the ball rolling on getting inspiring art onto the streets
  • Leaving country in a few days
  • WG needs more people
  • need artists
  • don't have to be on-site to be part of the group
  • many neighborhoods have no posters or representation of the movement
  • if we want 99%'s support, must get message out

(Unknown)

  • rep from Black Magic Noise
  • formed group with 206 Zulu to introduce movement to music
  • 206zulu.com

Sustainability Brigade

  • presenter: Carlo
  • got Seattle Public Utilities to bring more recycling bin
  • need to keep recyclables separated
  • tomorrow at 2pm, will be teaching about Tar Sands Pipeline

Union Caucus

  • presenter: Jeff
  • grassroots union caucus formed to support Occupy Seattle
  • made up of a variety of crafts and trades
  • objectives
    • support Occupy Seattle
    • work within the labor movement to supply
    • create education workshops
  • to join, provide email, look for Facebook thing

Facilitation Working Group

  • meets daily at 4:30 under Romax sign (south end of park)

General Discussion

  • time: 19:22
  • now that you've moved to your neighbor's personal bubble, talk about what we should do next
    • seven minutes
  • facilitator note: no proposals, just discussing
  • anonymous
    • I've been here since last week. I'm here for freedom and liberty for everyone.
    • I'll spoke pot when I want.
    • I've been to war
    • Standing here spilling my guts to you is scarier than getting shot at
    • people are taking a stand with us all over the world
    • some aren't ready, but laying in wait
    • time and again we play into their hands
  • Emma
    • excited to see so many people
    • this week is Jewish holiday of Sukro
      • celebrates universal justice and shelter
      • today is end of Sabbath
    • after GA, join us at Sukkoh on 4th Ave to sing for justice and peace
  • anonymous
    • that guy was on-topic
      • before we decide what to do next, need common understanding of why we're here
        • facilitator: that's a different conversation
  • Noah
    • idea: we generate short statement that we can get out
    • rationale: this would allow everyone in Seattle will have an idea what this is all about
  • anonymous
    • 5000 people marched here in today
      • our biggest yet
    • police and mayor are trying to crush our occupation
    • call was for mass-reoccupation tonight here at Westlake
      • if we do not succeed, will be major setback
      • if we defeat police efforts, will give big boost to Occupy Wall Street movement everywhere
      • is vital that everyone stay and tell friends
    • 99% of Seattle supports us, but they're not here
    • after meeting, contact people to tell them to come support by standing up to big business
  • anonymous
    • should start talking to legislators
    • they make laws, not police
  • Danielle
    • I brought children
    • educate your children
    • I'm from a small town
    • bring this voice to your small town
    • get more media coverage in small towns
    • bring this voice to our children, families
    • stand for what you believe it
    • join a credit union
  • anonymous
    • idea: call Mayor
    • I have his phone number: 206-684-4000
      • Monday – Friday
    • tell him you support Occupy Seattle
  • anonymous
    • put more energy in a mass-boycott of big banks
    • can put people on streets to reach those who cannot be here
    • it's a way for them to connect with us and make a difference
  • anonymous
    • idea: start thinking about campaign finance reform, getting money and lobbyists out of Washington
  • anonymous
    • I disagree with everything everyone just said
    • there are many things that need to be done in order for us to be effective
      • yuppies need to
        • start analyzing class and privilege
        • stop wielding it against people who are oppressed
        • stop calling cops
        • stop forcing people out
      • need more workshops on ending that oppression
      • stop pretending we can represent anyone but ourselves
      • this is not a coherent movement
      • this should not be a coherent movement
  • Maria
    • in conjunction with a statement need to acknowledge history of genocide, slavery, and prophet of people of color
    • need to ensure voices of
    • I'm an economic refugee
    • my community doesn't trust police, border patrol, homeland security
    • need that community here
    • they won't show unless we have their back
    • need to prove to indiginous people, people of color, economic refugees that we stand in solidarity
  • anonymous
    • let's dance
    • Emma Goldman said: if I can't dance, I don't want to be part of your revolution
  • anonymous
    • we all have many ideas about how to change things
    • seems to me there's a consensus for fundamental change
    • people are here because they recognize it must come from us
    • should realize that powers that be are launching attack on these occupations
    • they want to stop these before they can get going
      • not only using police force
      • saying we're breaking rules
      • saying we're disturbing peace
      • system rules say they can kill people in Iraq and Afghanistan
      • can drive people into streets
      • police kill people
      • we can't stay in the streets
    • idea; go on the offensive
      • call out more people
      • say boldly: it's right to occupy
  • anonymous
    • we're here to make a difference, not show we're pissed off
    • we're here to do something concrete
    • we can give up our simple luxuries
    • I like to smoke, but I don't need to
    • figure out what you need, and from there we'll make a difference
  • anonymous
    • idea: guarantee that we can legally stay here
    • now we are outside the law
    • unless we figure that out, we'll be cleared out
    • need to get lawyers
  • anonymous
    • regarding suggestion of minimal statement of purpose
      • agree we should not be coherent movement
      • conversation regarding our purpose is appropriate and potentially effective
      • I suggest that we have decided that we are peaceful occupation in Seattle
      • and that we want global justice
      • and that corporations are not people
  • anonymous
    • idea: do more marches
    • rationale: fun, gets people organized, appears passionate
    • on October 23, is movement to close your bank account with banks and open credit union account
  • anonymous
    • this is amazing
    • I agree with many suggestions about next steps
      • holding this place, marches, etc.
    • idea: start having long-term vision of where we're going
    • in last several years have seen that Democrats and Republicans represent the interests of the 1%
      • may be well-meaning individuals in those parties
      • these are big-business parties
      • we can start thinking about a democratically-organized, grassroots, multi-layered, multiracial, layered party that represents interests of 99%
      • working class, middle class, youth, elderly, homeless, all races must come together and build party for ourselves that will break lock Wall Street has on Washington
  • anonymous
    • this is a very good movement
    • like direction it's heading
    • idea: get people to to canvass around the streets with fliers to get more public support
  • anonymous
    • we have many important constitutional issues within this country
    • corporate personhood
    • mis-representative legislature
    • power of the executive
    • should call for constitutional assembly
    • for more information, check your Constitution
  • Lulu
    • I believe in diversity of tactics
    • idea: make points of unity
    • okay to disagree
    • we must be unified on some points
    • I disagree with some statements made tonight, but an here with you all
    • I'm here because my friend texted me
    • I haven't set up tent, but my friend has, and I want his safety
    • I know many people not here are in solidarity
    • should tell people how to be in solidarity with concrete actions
    • not everyone can be here, for various reasons
  • anonymous
    • idea: in addition to taking your money out of banks and into credit unions, spend as little money as possible
    • we can barter
    • we can find out what people need
    • a pint of example is worth more than a gallon of advice
  • anonymous
    • we need to use what the Tea Party laid out with the Republicans to get people into Congress
    • Washington is just as responsible as Wall Street
    • if we can somehow avoid being co-opted by Democrats and be solidified as our own voice, we can make change
      • without doing that, we will not get anywhere
      • this park is not big enough
  • anonymous
    • there have been many suggestions for demands, points of unity, quickly
    • I disagree
    • that's what media and politicians tell us to do
    • I've been here two weeks, since people started camping out
    • fertile ground for developing lessons for changing politics, police, powers that be, other ways of living
    • let's hold workshops and debates
    • let's keep McGinn, his cops, Bloomberg, Democrats, Republicans, Wall Street, from shutting us down so we can implement popular agency
    • idea: have patience
  • anonymous
    • short term suggestion: this occupation rests on the shoulders of the occupiers
      • if we leave them alone, they'll be taken down
      • without this spot we'll lose too much
      • support them at 6pm and 6am
      • if a few tents, will be taken down
      • if 100 tents, will be something to stand behind
  • anonymous
    • at college campuses across our state banks occupy public space through bank chains, collecting fees an
    • if you're a student, tell classmates to move your money and boot banks from your campus
  • anonymous
    • idea: each of us thoroughly investigate history of federal reserve
    • rationale in order to understand long-term who or what our real enemy is, must educate ourselves
    • people in power (the federal reserve) would love to keep us dis-unified
    • we must be peaceful with each other and be peaceful with the police
    • long-term: be diligent so we're not just replacing current bad leaders with new bad leaders
  • anonymous
    • idea: identify national movements that are already working on things we would like to accomplish, and help them out
  • anonymous
    • if you don't like Wall Street, divest. Sell your stocks. Make this year's bonus season the worst ever
  • Leila
    • idea: continue performing outreach
      • corporate media is misrepresenting us to a gross degree
      • need to inform people of the nature of our movement and what we're trying to do
  • anonymous
    • one simple way to free ourselves from bonds of corporations is establish self-sustaining communities
    • each one teach one
    • learn a trade
    • when shit hits the fan, top 1% won't care about us
  • anonymous
    • we're the 99%, but we're not all here yet
    • one reason: people aren't sure they can trust us as a community
    • need an equity statement to guarantee support that everyone who comes here will have voices heard
    • structures will keep marginalized communities marginalized
  • anonymous
    • my fellow yuppies:
      • you will see and hear things here and on Facebook that will seem hostile
      • remember, we're on same team
      • sometimes, way people talk is a little more confrontational than we yuppies are used to
  • anonymous
    • I dislike idea of third party
    • I don't believe in hierarchy
    • I've seen points of unity tear groups apart because process is so long and drawn out
    • continue with spirit of occupation: give according to ability, take according to need
      • extend to issues working people face
        • high transportation cost
          • idea: free transit
        • high education cost
  • Rachel
    • idea: focus on local issues
      • we have a chance of making change there
      • on Nov 1, over 20,000 people will close cash benefits from DSHS
        • address this, would make us seem relevant
    • on a practical level, my group talked about how we should be thinking about the winter
  • Andrew
    • should form small groups and occupy various areas
      • not enough to canvass our neighborhoods with flyers on light poles
      • reach out to people
      • don't just talk, listen
      • ask what we should do next
      • bring that info back
    • take money out of too-big-to fail banks
      • for every dollar of money, they can loan that 10 to 20 times
      • doesn't take many of us to make them no longer too big to fail
  • Noah
    • issue statement on our own terms
    • we're part of movement that wans to change world; let's say that clearly
  • anonymous
    • particularly agrees with need to educate ourselves
      • educate about similar movements
        • Tahir Square
        • civil rights movement
        • XXX
        • 1930's militant labor movement
          • that created middle class in United States
  • anonymous
    • have been here two weeks
    • has been talking to tons of people who are not here
    • 25 Cornish students here tonight
      • would be more if we had points of unity
    • overwhelming reason people are not here is people don't know what we're about and are hesitant to give their voice to something the don't understand
      • that's reasonable
    • it is essential to come up with points of unity
      • not having them keeps people from joining
  • anonymous librarian
    • democratic institution
    • form groups and committees to meet in libraries
    • figure out where laws define structure that omits us and ruins our lives
      • note those laws, propose amendments, take to city hall and local government, loudly
  • anonymous
    • a lawyer who volunteered to help everyone Monday
    • if harassed by police, call
    • phone 253-273-1133
    • legal staff here might be swamped
  • Grant
    • is a drug addict
    • if you have similar problem, talk to me here
    • has clean time and can help
    • is not benefit to movement to get high often here
    • if you're going to get high, that's your business, but it doesn't look good
  • anonymous
    • regarding spending money: some people may be here because they have no choice
    • regarding de-investing: my job feeds wall street, I can't quit, I make minimum wage
    • lets use our power as workers, not as consumers
    • spread occupation to schools, workplace, strikes, general strikes
  • Sarah
    • focus on doing more marches
    • push for gay marriage in Washington state in 2012
  • anonymous
    • time to stand up and get counted or lay down and be mounted
    • stop letting people make decisions for us; stand up and make them for ourselves
  • anonymous
    • there are people interested in spreading to Central District neighborhood
    • see him in yellow and grey REI tent "Castle God-damnit"
  • anonymous
    • be conscience of language; decolonize it
    • I am not a lady; I don't own land or have serfs
    • don't assume gender or class status
    • make schedule so there is always coverage and protection of those in our space
  • Mia
    • this is my fourth occupy city
    • when I go home in two weeks to New York City, I'll take your story to Wall Street
    • idea: keep in contact with other occupy cities
      • will have effective and unified movement
      • change occurs with numbers
      • solidarity important
      • if we keep in contact with other occupy cities, will know what works to achieve our goals
  • anonymous
    • points of unity: have discussed since beginning three points of unity:
      • abolish corporate personhood
      • get money out of politics
      • decentralize the federal reserve
    • this park is too small for how large we are getting
      • today was great example of what will happen here
      • we reached maximum capacity for this location
      • suggestion: two parks north of here: Denny Park and Cal Anderson Park would facilitate a larger group of people
  • anonymous
    • our institutions don't work for us, were never supposed to
    • occupy Westlake is a beautiful beginning
    • should see things like this in every neighborhood
    • can only get so far speaking truth to power
    • if have sick that need healing, find those who can heal and do so
    • if need homes, gather people who know how to do so and do it
    • look forward to assemblies like this city-wide and nation-wide
    • can grow our own food, make our own decisions and keep in solidarity with each other while keeping Westlake as home base
  • anonymous
    • people with skills relevant to revolution, teach here
  • anonymous
    • do not believe or assume that the things you have been taught throughout your life are true
    • do not buy into mainstream media; it's owned by mainstream media
    • seek alternate forms of information and question everything
  • anonymous
    • families and community
    • idea: those of us with nothing to lose stand up for those who have everything to lose
    • keep families safe
    • if you can take active role and have nothing to lose, do it peacefully
  • anonymous
    • homeless people: make yourselves heard
    • unite homeless communities, non-homeless communities
    • stand in peace, bring your friends who cannot be here
    • 400 homeless died in the last 10 years
    • XXX in recent weeks
  • anonymous
    • need professors and educators to join us
    • need to unite with other occupies, other global movements
    • send delegates to send our message to learn to come back, and tell us what is happening
    • this is bigger than Seattle, it's international
    • have responsibility as residents of United States to hold governments and XXX accountable
    • educate ourselves about what our military is doing to other nations
      • some of us are connected to corporations and our government
  • anonymous
    • If we protest outside of banks, places with which we disagree
    • if we form a line outside of them, we can make a difference
  • Mary
    • loves being here
    • first year here
    • I've been treated all my life like a piece of shit.
    • I'm a Native American, and I just want to be here.
    • I love all of you, being here, and being a part of this. I'll be here to the end.
  • anonymous
    • Some of us have experienced psychological oppression
    • Everything each and every one of you does matters.
    • When you don't come here and I do, it matters.
    • Please change the way you think about what you do.
  • anonymous
    • idea: grab a pen and write something on your tent about what you think why you're here, etc.
    • this will help when we go home and come back

Adjourned 21:00

2 Responses to General Assembly notes 10/15