Here are some GA Notes from Occupy NOLA’s first few GAs.
Minutes from 1st General Assembly @ Duncan Plaza 10/06/11 6:00pm to 9:05
Approximately 230 people.
Jason: “We have to practice what’s called the People’s Microphone.
For the purpose of amplifying sounds. Cut sentences down to 3-4 words at a time. The people who can hear will repeat it.
Hello, my name is jason. Welcome to the first General assembly … at occupy new orleans
First we will go over what is a general assembly. How does it work? The general assembly, is basically, the decision-making body of this occupation. It’s where we meet. Discuss issues, stuff like that.
So we use hand signals to operate. They’re silent, so that it does not interupt talking. First one. This one is sign language for applause. We use this (hands up)when you agree with something. This is (scale hands), I’m on the fence. This is, (hands down)I disagree. This is (fingers in triangle), point of process. After I explain. The process of the GA, this will make more sense, but if someone breaks process. Says something that’s off topic. You hold up this signal. And when they are done speaking. You will be called upon to explain, the point of process.
This means (hands circling in front of person) hurry up. If someone is speaking and taking a long time, this is what you do. It’s not meant to be rude, just a nice way of saying let’s get it going.
This is (index finger raised) point of information. It is used when someone makes a statement and you have information pertinent to that statement. For example, if someone says we’re marching at 3 o’clock, and we’re actually marching at 4. That’s a point of information. It should not be abused to say whatever you want. Only information dealing with the statement.
This is (arms crossed above head) a block, when we propose something. You can block when we are trying to reach consensus. A block is very serious. General rule of thumb, if you have a strong ethical or security concern, and you would consider leaving if this decision went forward, that is the time to block.
So how the GA normally works, is first we have the agenda. Agenda items are presentations or proposals that are relevant to the entire group. The normal process for getting something on the agenda is to first go to a working group. Talk about your idea. See what they have to say. Next step is go to the facilitation working group who will insure that your proposal is clear and well thought out. They do not make decisions about what can or cannot go on the agenda. They simply make sure proposals are clear.
After the agenda, we have working group report backs. I will explain working groups in a minute. But when a working group has something to say. They send someone to speak during working group report backs.
3rd in GA is annoucements. Announcements are for factual statements. They are not the time to come up and go on political spiels. For example, if I wanted to say, I just formed an excercise working group. Anyone who wants to be in that working group come see me. That’s an announcement.
When the GA is over. We have what’s called the people’s soap box. Where you can say anything you want.”
Jazz: Just as a point of information, I have a stack already for the people’s soap box. So if you have thoughts from there, feel free to share.
I will explain how the stack works now. The stack is basically a list of people waiting to speak. When there is a proposal and we open it up to questions. People raise their hands and get on stack, and that’s how we move things along. We have a stack taker. When you have a question, look at the stack taker, raise your hand, then wait until you are acknowledged.
We use progressive stack to try to give a greater opportunity to those who haven’t had a chance to speak. If you’ve already spoken three times, you may get bumped down. If we’ve heard from a particular racial or ethnic group, we may open it up to other groups. This ensures a diverse set of opinions. Which is what we are all here for. Which is one of our strengths.
We’re going to hear someone speak about the last occupation of this space.”
Stanley, “Good evening everybody. My name is Stanley, I’m here to tell you about this first occupation that I’ve seen of this place. It was right after Katrina. The homless organization occupied this area. They held it for about a year. They ate, slept, everything here. The city had a real problem with it, but didn’t know what to do with it. And they finally used the destruction of a building that is no longer there to get rid of them.
Here are some rules of engagement for you. Monitor your behavior. They are watching. Drinking, drugs, They’re going to use any excuse to move you out. So be well aware of your behavior. Your success depends on it. The issue that we’re going on here was that, there were a lot of people from the street, to almost the library. Tents, carts, all that. This was the center location. People brought food. I assume they will bring you some. Maintain your area. Keep it clean. That’s another excuse for the city. If you and your mate feel extra loving, y’all know what it is. You can laugh about, but the city will use anything they can to move you.
Personally, I’m glad to see you. I got some great stuff for you. I’m glad to see that it’s young people. Hold your ground, but be well-aware of the obstacles you’re going to face. It can be a success. It has been a success before. It depends on you.”
Assembly member*: “Point of information, on the first day of Duncan plaza, members of the housing movement set up six tents, because that’s all we could afford, within two months, we had 300-400 tents. The vast majority of those people were homeless.”
Lydia: “Hello, I’m lydia. I’m up here right now for a discussion about community agreements during the GA. Now what is a community agreement. I wanted to talk about some ways that we can commit to and are acting with one another within these spaces. We don’t all know each other. It can be tricky. There’s a lot of promise in that. We’re going to take a moment, put up some general guidelines with how we should be talking with each other. I’m going to voice a couple to get us going. And then Naya will take a stack of additional lists. Then we can come together as a group to decide this is how we’re goign to talk to eachother in this space.
1 is active listening. Active listening is listening to the people who are talking. This does not mean making lots of side conversations, or messing around on our phones, but listening to others because we want to be listened to.
2 is step up step back. If you are a person who tends to talk a lot (I am one of those people), then step up in your role as a listener. If you’re someone who tends to listen extremely well, then step up into your role as a speaker. This way we can ensure we are all participating verbally and listening.
3 this is part of the conversation related to progressive stack. We as a community are aware of power dynamics in our conversation with one another. So we do that by noticing how race, gender, age, class, ability, and a million other types of identies are telling us to speak up more, and some less. So we’re going to help our facilitators and hopefully do not have to rely as much on progressive stack, because we are aware of ourselves.
4 Assume good intentions. We are going to assume everyone is speaking from the best part of our heart to move us collectively forward.
5 attack ideas not people. Disagree with someone, be rigorous, be clear about differing principles. Do not do name-calling, put people down, roll your eyes. You really are invested in the spirit of democratic debate
These are suggestions to you. I’m open if anyone else has anything to add in.
Assembly member: Does the speaker have to use the speakers Mic if they feel they can speak loud?
Lydia: We don’t know who may or may not have hearing disabilties. To be on the safer side, to make sure we can all hear one another. That’s just my thought.
Jason: In New York, we are prohibited from using amplified sound. That’s why we started using people’s mic. It turned out to be one of the more beneficial things. It helps everyone feel that they are a part of the conversation. It’s really powerful in many ways that you will come to see as time goes on.
Assembly member: Are there committees?
Jason: I should have explained, when I went over the GA, the process that this would be not a normal GA. Most of the time spent here will be helping everyone become familiar with the GA process. Later, we will propose a schedule for now on, and the GAs will be like I described earlier. I will go over working groups, and how that works shortly.
If anyone else would like to speak specifically on this topic of how we should speak, then hold your hand up now?
Before we close off this piece, does anyone have any objections to what we have said?
Lydia: I want to say, that these are working agreements. If at any point, we should change, edit, add, then please bring it up. Also, there are community aggreements. This is not just the facilitators job. We have a collective responsibility to hold ourselves accountable in this process
Jason: So now I will explain how a proposal works. Someone says a proposal, then we open it up to questions and concerns. At that point, if you have a question or concern, you get on stack and then voice it.
Here’s a proposal. I propose that one of the principles that we all agree upon, that in this space and outside of this space, we hold dear non-violence. Does anyone have any questions or concerns?
Assembly member: How do you define non-violence?
Jason: Bascially, respect, physically and verbally others around you, more specifically it doesn’t make sense to be violent. If we get rough, the cops bring guns. If we brought guns, the cops would bring tanks. So for practical purposes, and cultural purposes we should agree to non-violence in our actions.
Assembly Member: I think this is proposed as a tactic. For whoever a broader definition of what violence
and non-violence. This is only proposed as a tactic for this movement in this space.
Jason: Exactly, I don’t mean to tell you what to do in your own personal lives
Assembly Member: I would like to make a point as well… (unable to hear what was said)
Jason: When the people’s microphone breaks down we do this “MIC CHECK!”
Same Assembly Member: What I was going to say, is that non-violence should be understood not only as the absolute respect for others people physical integrity, but also as restraint from the use of verbal violence or symbolic violence. So we should be careful with the kind of language we use here. Try to avoid as much of possible the use of racist language, sexist language, xenophobic language, even if it’s meant as a mere joke. This is not a sitcom. Thank you.
Jason: another excellent point. I completely agree.
Assembly Member: In NYC people were attacked violently by the police who did not warrant the attack. I would just hope that we could teach each other methods of resistance to this sort of violent attack that is not violent.
Jason: In new york, we have a working group that does just that. That gives training on de-escalation both internally and with the police.
Assembly Member: I was just going to suggest that when we address each other right now. We stand up if we can. Just to make it a little easier to see who’s speaking and to hear.
Other: I have certain concerns and questions about how non-violence or even pacifism is being defined in relation to self-defense, and yet people are provoked by outrageous behavior by the authorites
Jason: We are all humans, it isn’t a law. It’s just something that we can all agree that would be a good thing. You will not be punished if you punch a cop back — by the group anyway.
Assembly Member: I think it’s important remembering that the police are part of the 99% and we should treat them with respect and seek to bring them to our side.
Jason: Point of process I may seem rude for pointing these things out, but they are especially important in the beginning. We are discussing the proposal to agree to non-violence. The two comments, one about standing up when speaking, and the other about how the cops are the 99% also, both excellent comments. Not pertaining to the proposal. Again, I don’t mean to be rude, just to point out how the process works.
Assembly Member: Talking about techniques of non-violent self-defense. I have a good friend back in my home country who publishes in her blog summaries of the manual of non-violent self-defense techniques to be used in case of police brutality. Those blog entries are in portugese, but I can ask her if she can translate them to english, and if you’re interested, I’ll share it on the facebook page.
Jazz: Point of order: this is not on topic, comments should be about whether we should adopt non-violence.
Assembly Member: I propose we take a vote on non-violent or violent means.
Other: How this works, is we will close stack, and then when stack is over, see if we can reach consensus.
Other2: I think we should remember that both non-violence, and the use of violence against police both are things that require privelege in different circumstances. That some people due to conditions that are beyond their control have to use violence in this world.
Other3: Does non-violence extend to destruction of property?
Jason: For this proposal, for this particular movement, yes.
Assembly Member: I hope that this is a movement for the people. And continues to be a movement for the people and by the people, and not just a fad that the media thinks it is. We must all realize that the problems in america are bigger than each one of us out here. And keep telling everyone to make the movement bigger bigger bigger so this can continue to keep being movement by the people.
Jazz: Just a point of process this should have been for the soap box.
Does anyone else have something to say about the proposal?
Assembly Member: I would like to say, that wherever you stand the main point of this occupation is to gain community support to be clear where the violence comes from. we want to make sure the community realizes that and knows that is not from us.
Other: I just want to say we need to inform the communities that everyone doesn’t understand our goals, and we need to inform that this is for the people.
Jazz: Point of Process, that would have also been appropriate for the soap box part. This is the part for consenus on the proposal of violence and non-violence. We have time constraints. Can we please respect the process?
Assembly Member: Let’s acknowledge everyone who would like to speak, and then close stack after that, we can see if we can reach consensus.
Other: Is it possible to block the decision to continue stack?
Other3: So if we’re going to stick to this process. When someone asks a question, like do we consider property destruction violence. It’s not appropriate for a facilitator to say yes or no. This is a group decision about definitions that’s very important.
Other4: I’d just like to say, that I don’t think it’s fair to frame the decision as thought it’s a decision between violence, and non-violence. And I don’t know if it’s important for us to define ourselves in those terms at all.
Other5: As far as community, I am in the community radio, on WTUL in an hour, what can I do to help the process get the community involved?
Other6: Point of process, This statement does not pertain to the issue at hand.
Other7: I have a proposal to amend the original proposal to state that we should engage in non-violence in terms of harming one another inside of this space, physically, verbally, and even symbolically, and that when we’re taking direct action, it will be up to the direct action working group to determine what kind of actions we should or should not take. These will then be presented to the general assembly.
Other8: Would anyone like to make a comment on that proposal? Stand up and then the stack will close.
Other9: To clarify, it is not so much a question, as whether we are to identify ourselves personally as violent or non. But it is how we are supposed to approach the infrastructure of our movement.
Jason: Let’s see, if we can reach consensus on the just said proposal. I will ask if you agree. And then I will ask if you disagree. Raise your hand if you agree?
Anyone in disagreement?
WE HAVE CONSENSUS!
I have a proposal, since hand gestures are so vital to our process, and the city has very subtly turn the lights off only around us, that we move to the lit section of the park.
Jason: Someone is working on getting lights, but we make decisions as a group. Is that something, one thing we do that I haven’t explained yet is called a temp check. If you call for a temp check on something, it is not a binding decision. Just trying to gauge what the group thinks about it. Can we get a temp check?
From what I can see people want to move.
Assembly Member: From what I can see people don’t want to move.
Other: I propose that we vote on this the same way we just voted. First we raise our hands, then have a chance for those who don’t want to move.
Jason: Mic check
Everyone can take your seats, we’ll get started.
I think I may have overstepped a few boundaries. I came from New York. I’m really excited to help you guys. But this is Occupy New Orleans. You guys should run the show. Come to an agreement about the processes you’d like to use. For that we go here.
Zora: Hi everyone, my name is Zora. Consensus is a very laborious process that we use consensus in this space now that we’ve had a taste of what that is really like. Are there any questions, clarifications, or friendly amendments?
Assembly Member: I just wanted to say there are people behind you, so perhaps the facilitators would kind of address both sides.
Other: If you have a question or a concern to the topic point, when is the appropriate time to ask your question or voice your concern?
Jazz: I would say soap box.
Assembly Member: We are also going to ask for announcements at the end of the GA
Other: Are we not going to use mikes at all to go faster. Consensus took about an hour for the first decision we made. I’m concerned that we have to organize how we maintain this occupation.
Jazz: As a point of process, while I respect your question one of the reasons it takes so long, is because we never get past the proposal at hand. The proposal at hand are we going to use the consensus system that we have seen in action thus far. So let’s stick to that at the moment. To speed up the process and not waste anymore time.
Assembly Member: Does consensus mean unamimous agreement or just no block?
Zora: Traditionally, it means a unanimous agreement, but that can also be defined by this group.
Assembly Member: If you’re doing a vote, I think that it should be okay if people want to abstain.
Other: In a lot of community houses that I have lived in, consensus generally means the majority of the group, but if one person blocks, it can’t happen.
Other2: One observation that I have made is that we can’t get past the proposal because people are unclear as to when to vote. Some people are agreeing mid-proposal. Like this whereas others are waiting to actually vote on the proposal of whether or not we will use the consensus system.
Other3: Point of information, it does get tricky, because this (hands up)does mean (claps), but this (hands up) also does mean, I’m voting yes, so when a vote is officially called, this (hands up) will count as yes, but if a vote has not been called, this (hands up) will count as (applause).
Other4: I’ll go with the consensus, because I am a mindless automaton, but I can say that from my experience in the labor and housing movements in new orleans. Most decisions were made by majority vote. So if we should not be able to agree on consensus. That’s an alternative that most working class new Orleaneans are familiar with.
Other5: I’m going to close the stack, we have two more people on it. If there’s nothing else I want to close the stack.
Other6: Someone should give a viable alternative to the consensus system before we vote.
Other7: As an alternative, we could consider either a simple majority or a 3/4 as options.
Other8: As a point of order, I’m thinking we should get consensus about closing the stack.
Zora: So, temp check on closing the stack.
So we’re gonna have a vote. Unless there’s any blocks to voting right now. So how does this group feel about adopting consensus? Can I get everyone to get consensus to raise your hands? Can I get all those opposed? Any hard blocks?
Is that a hard block?
Assembly Member: I think majority rules is a more beneficial approach, because it allows for greater diversity of opinion, and it encourages dissent.
Zora: So, now we have an interesting predicament, the majority would like consensus, but there is not consensus on whether we would like consensus. So if we decide on majority, then we end with consensus.
Assembly Member: Direct response to that, majority rules is what we have in this country. That’s what we’re here to change. Process is difficult, annoying, getting on your nerves so bad, but at the end it’s gonna feel so good.
I was just going to open up the floor for friendly amendments, which means this is not a time for opinions, but for direct proposals.
Other: We are already using consensus, so I find voting to use consensus bizarre. I propose that if somebody wants to propose an amendment to our decision making process.
Other2: I propose that we vote right after a proposal is made, then we can see how many people disagree and ask them to voice their opinions.
Other3: So that’s one proposal, let’s hear more.
Other4: I would like to make an amended proposal, that we use consensus whenever possible, but otherwise we go for a super majority of 3/4 of a vote. That’s it.
Other5: I like your proposal, but that if someone has a hard block, they’re hard block should be heard, and then if we can come to an amended proposal to achieve what the blocker wants and retain the essence of the original proposal that should be the absolute proposal. No going forward on things that have a hard block. Unless they can come to an amended proposal — my amended proposal of this young mans proposal.
Other3: Other amended proposals…
Other6: I would like to propose that we use the consensus proposal until it becomes a problem, then we can look at other alternatives.
Other7: I agree with that, but when all avenues of consensus have been exhausted, in New York, they’ve gone to a 9/10’s super majority, I propose that.
Other3: Are there anymore proposals?
Other8: I would suggest that we only consider that we only consider not using consensus when it comes to matters that our very timely. Only when there is a time constraint.
Other9: I propose an added amendent to red-shirt guy that we also respect the hard block as was proposed for the 3/4’s.
Other10: Request for clarification, if there is a hard block, that we respect. There can’t be a 90%. So my understanding of what has been proposed it there will be a proposal. We will ask for consensus.
Other11: If not everyone raises there hand in agreement, but as we’ve just seen, there are situations where not everyone raises their hands, but there are no hard blocks, that is the process we are trying to decide.
Other12: For the future could we get some kind of white board for the proposals?
Zora: Proposals, that’s it?
Assembly Member: I propose that in the case where there is a hard block. They should be allowed to create some kind of working group to define their objections. In the case there is not a block of any kind, a 9/10’s Majority vote.
Other: I have a proposal concerning the hard block. If it is discovered that the hard block is an undercover agent, that that person be denied the power of a hard block.
Zora: I do not feel that a culture of paranoia is helpful in this situation, unless there is rock solid evidence. that pointing fingers at people of being a possible undercover is actually a technique that undercovers use to break up the technique to use that as a major structure.
Jazz: So undercovers are a very hot topic. Are there anymore proposals or amendments to what we’ve been working over?
Assembly member: But what is the next issue, that the group is really going to have to vote on besides the vote of consensus.
Jazz: We can only get to that point if we can first decide on how we are going to vote.
Naya: Are there any more proposals? Can I take a temp check on closing stack, after these two people, the stack is closed.
Assembly Member: First to clarify. We always prefer consensus if possible, if not possible, we can go to a 9/10’s superior majority unless there are hard blocks. If there are hard blocks I would like to propose that whoever has a hard block must create an alternate proposal.
Other: What we have right now are a couple of proposals. We have consensus, and when we cannot get that a 9/10 vote with blocks. I did not hear anything different from that proposal, blocks aside.
Other2: We had a 3/4’s action.
Other3: I would like to take consensus on this part of the consensus? I’m breaking it up into parts. This is to use consensus to use consensus whenever possible. Otherwise use a 9/10’s majority vote with blocks. All in agreement? All opposed. Are there any blocks?
Assembly Member: So I’m going to go through the rest of the options first, and then we will vote on them. We have blocks.
If there is a hard block, that person must submit an amendment, and also have the opportunity to form a working group to help refine what the nature of the nature of their hard block is.
So if we can get a vote on whether when someone hard blocks they must represent a counter proposal, and they have the opportunity to create a working group and work through it and bring it back to the majority. Those in agreement? Those opposed? Hard Blocks?
I would suggest that those with hard blocks speak their opinions.
Hard-blocking Assembly member: I don’t think that someone who hard blocks on principle should have to propose an amendment. It should go back to discussion.
Assembly Member: Can you explain what a working group is?
Zora: A working group is a committee of people who meet outside of the general assembly to work through issues or come up with proposals and then report back to the larger group.
Assembly Member: People are hard-blocking a lot. When we discussed that earlier, it was implied that it was a really big deal, and you would leave the group if the group went in the other direction. I’ve also experienced communities that ran on consensus where there was a soft rule that you only get two hard blocks in your life. I’m not saying it’s a hard rule, just keep it in mind.
Other: When using consensus it’s a good idea to think about every proposal in such a way that you’re thinking about what’s best for everyone as opposed for you personally.
Zora: Is there anyone else who had a hard block who would like to speak?
Hardblocking2: I agree with what he said. Because sometimes I think it’s difficult to articulate why you disagree, and even more so on the spot.
Assembly Member: If you block, it comes back to the group, but that person has the opportunity to create a working group thusly tabling the issue until the next general assembly.
Other: So you put that person on the spot to do something that they might not want to do. A lot of these people may not be comfortable working in the group. So you say should form a working group, but some people have never been in a situation like this? So why would you put the onus on that person?
Other2: If you’re going to hard block something. You should have some kind of solution to why you are disagreeing with the consensus, and if you are uncomfortable working with the group, you should leave the group.
Other3: The lady in the black, did not say that we would have to create a working group. What I heard her say, is that if you put a hard block, you would merely have the opportunity to create a working group, you can pass and we can take it back to the bigger group.
Other4: I propose a friendly amendment, of a soft block, meaning you disagree, would like further discussion, but the amendment or proposal could still pass as you are not ethically, or strongly opposed as we defined hard block earlier.
Other5: As my understanding of consensus goes that’s what opposing a vote is. Would we like to create a third category of voting? Temp check? So there would be, all in favor, all opposed, soft block, hard blocks.
Other6: Can I propose that we stop repeating what the other person says? I think it’s nervewracking, I got a real big mouth so you don’t have to repeat me. My point is everybody’s getting restless out here, or maybe not. I just want to know when can get to the real issues, and I think this is a great movement. I don’t think occupy nola is attacking the issues at hand.
Other7: I hear what you’re saying, but part of creating a movement, is solidifying the infrastructure of how we talk about these real issues. If we don’t go through these really long conversations, then voices might be silenced very well.
Other8: Proposals, we’re so close y’all.
Other9: I would like to propose that we can always come back and go over this ground again after we’ve taken care of a couple of things. There are certain thigns that need to be done tonight, and I think consensus is an evolving process and this will work out as we go along.
Other10: I think that will have to happen anyway as we grow in numbers.
Other11: Are these decisions concerning consensus subject to amendment? At a later time should people feel the urge, we be able to replace or abolish the consensus.
Jason: We are a movement, thus we keep moving and growing and changing.
I doubt that anything decided tonight will be hard rules for the years to come that is this movement.
Zora: So can I get a temp check on voting? Are there any blocks?
The proposal, as it stands, if during a vote, there is a hard block. That person will have the opportunity to speak their piece and create a working group to bring it back to the group, and if that happens, the issue will be tabled. If nothing else, the group will continue to discuss it. Can I get a vote?
Assembly Member: I just wanted to ask, if the issue is tabled, then it would be moved to the next meeting? Can we vote on this proposal? In favor, opposed, hard blocks?
Blocker: I think the working group should decide when they are ready to propose it. Can we get a vote on that?
Blocker2: That was something that we left out that someone that mentioned earlier. If someone has a hard block, they should speak on that block, go to working group, unless there is a point of timeliness.
Assembly Member: So who’s going to decide whether or it’s pressing or not? I would like to go back to the amendment that when somebody blocks, then the group needs to decide in a timely manner whether it’s viable to what’s going on at the time? Does that make sense? Who’s gonig to decide.
Other: Point of information, this is fun, we should enjoy it and not be impatient.
Other2: (Unable to understand) When you do what I just did, talking too fast, so people are not repeating you. Stop and start over.
Other3: I would like to propose that since we have had many hard blocks the process for blocks that we should send these issues to the Gen assembly facilitation group and bring it back to the general assembly?
All in favor, all opposed, hard blocks?
Other3: We voted back we’re going to table the block issue to the GA facilitation working group. I would now like to move on to the working group portion of this general assembly.
Other4: First I want to propose a schedule of GA. I propose 1 at 1pm one at 7pm in the interest of getting as many people as possible, and having a lot of opportunity to start to get things done?
Are there any amendments to this proposal?
Other5: I amend that there be another gen assembly in the morning so we can decide what we’ll do for the rest of the day?
Other6: I propose that a meeting in the morning should concern the immediate details of the people who are actually living here.
Other4: Now the proposal, is that in the morning, 9 am everyone who is living here will meet to discuss what is going on for the day. At 1pm we will have a GA at 7p we will have GA.
I move to a vote, raise your hand if you’re in favor. Raise your hand if you are opposed. Hard block?
Assembly Member: Now we’re going to move to Working groups
I would like to announce the working groups we already have. If you are a member of one of these groups, I would invite you now to present any info you feel is pertinent to the group, but also, After I announce the working groups that they split up into these groups to discuss essential details.
The first group that we have is food.
They can meet near the food table after this meeting
Legal meet in front of yellow sign
Media/outreach, I can propose they meet in this middle area.
I will also go through these locations at the end of the meeting after announcements.
Other groups that we have formed include sanitation, medical, shelter/townplanning, technology/digital media, security, education, finance, GA facilitation.
I would now like to open if you have a working group that you would like to propose that you do so now.
Other: I would like to propse, an anti-racist working group, and how to be a white ally.
Other2: I think that might fall under education?
Assembly Member: I would like to mention that everyone is free to start whichever working group they like.
Other3: I have a proposal to start a working group for direct action. That includes marches, and all such activities.
Other4: Proposal, I am interested in recycling water bottles and other products here, and also transitioning from paper plates to compostable ones. Would you propose that this go under sanitation, food, or a separate group?
Other5: In the interest of creating a new society within the old, I propose a free school theater working group. This might fall under education. I think not.
Other6: We have bathrooms that we want to set up. The problem is that they’re composting toilets. There may be an ordinance against. We don’t know, but I feel people are probably, going to need to use the restroom tonight, so legal is looking into possibly porta-potties for tomorrow or soon. So the decision is whether or not to set these up tonight. So I propose that we do it for one night, and if told not to, discontinue.
Legal working group member: they can tell us to take them away. I think we should set them up and let them tell us to take it away.
Other7: Is there a team who wants to handle human waste, if not that’s a bad idea.
Other8: I wanted to propose a group, if it doesn’t fall under media, a street team with flyers, and get out there to the people.
Other9: Point of info, even with compostable toilets, is that still urinating in public, is that still in public.
Legal: just put some sheets around the toilets.
Other10: We should educate ourselves how to use composting toilets, because it’s important, you don’t want to clog it.
Other6: Point of information, we have a process in place to take care of it, enclose it, make it sanitary. What you do is cover your waste with sawdust so that it soaks up the moisture arobically decomposes, and it doesn’t stink, and that is.
Other11: Can I propose a sanitation becomes a part of the medical team?
Other12: Can I make a friendly amendement that those two working groups set up times to meet?
Other6: So I’m proposing that we do this. I feel as though tonight, there won’t be any repercussions, because of solidarity and love in this space.
Other13: I’m just wandering whether or not it is legal to create a compost on the park space.
Other6: The only difference between this and a porta-potty is deadly chemicals.
Facilitator: I would like to move to vote.
All those in favor in setting up composting toilet and also encourage the sanitation working group to meet with the medical working group? All those in favor, opposed, hard blocks?
Blocker: Because it’s a public health issue, we could get shut down. It may be necessary to move all of the waste tomorrow until we have a permanent solution, is that possible? Yes
Blocker2: We’re voting on two issues at once. We should separate.
Facilitator: The GA actually doesn’t determine what the working groups do. So remove that from the proposal.
We should use the compost toilets tonight. And then at the 9am meeting, re-evaluate the composting toilet issue.
Assembly Member: Point of order, during the 2007 occupation of duncan plaza, we had portalets in duncan plaza for months before they took them away, and that was after the city decided they were going to purge everyone from the square?
Facilitator: Are there any other amendments?
Other: I just wanted a point of clarification on what you said that the general assembly doesn’t decide what the working groups do.
Facilitator: We can bring this to consensus. Working groups and decisions about meetings should be made independent of the GA.
All proposals from the working groups go through the GA, but the GA does not block the proposals for the groups of meeting.
Assembly Member: I would say that it would not be out of line for the GA to expect a certain something from one or more working groups. In this context, I agree that it’s appropriate
Facilitator: All those in favor of using the compost toilets and meeting tomorrow at the 9am meeting discussing where to go from there? Opposed? hard blocks.
Assembly Member: If you are very excited about multiple working groups how do you get involved with multiple working groups?
Other: Proposal, put sign up sheets at the gazebo.
Other2: I’m proposing one of the first things we do to keep us all safe, to make security one of the first things we take care of. I need to go ahead and form that working group with spyboys (corrected by assembly members to spypeople) around the perimeter here.
Other3: Suggestion: If this is to be a true movement once again. They need more diversity in this group. I would think we really need to do outreach and get people in this group.
Other4: Point of Info: regarding more diversity, recent law put down in nola, that you cannot put posters on light posts, so whoever is in charge or is a part of the working group who will do PR should meet with someone who is in New Orleans and is familiar with laws like this, or is familiar with new orleans legal system. That group should perform in conjunction with the legal group.
Other5: You get fined for putting them on light post, and they could shut us down, but you are welcome to ask businesses to put them up. Most local businesses
Other6: I propose, that there is a difference between educating white people about how to be less racists than working with communities of color. Or those communities who occupied this very space. Propose a working group about that.
Other7: I propose an entertainment working group.
Other8: Proposal, that if you want to make a new working group, write it down, and announce it tomorrow at the next meeting so we can close this now.
Other9: Friendly amendment: I would like that contact list, a phone number and an email so people can contact the working group.
Other 10: In the immediate future, police liason group, and those people are in a lot of contact with the legal group and are aware of responsibilities and the list they are taking on.
Other11: We have someone talking to the police right now. They’ve been handling that since we got out here. Jasmine. If you like, I can talk to her about being that liason, because we don’t need ten people talking to the police.
Other12: Talk with office of emergency management. They are going to be the ones that will eventually get in contact with the fire department and EMS. Should we need either of those. I think that’s through the mayor’s office, but I’m not sure.
Other13: I would like to propose the discussion of working groups as to the amendment this person
Other14: I would like to suggest a childcare working group – and possibly all day long. I am part of the crescent city childcare collective, and I think I would like to help organize this. Maybe other members would like to as well.
Other15: I propose that we have a committe for entertainment that will include his theater idea, and be responsible for morale.
Facilitator: I would like to propose that we move to announcements. When announcements are complete I will announce the name of the working group, they will say where their working group will meet, and we will disperse.
If you agree we should make a list of WG that includes a phone number and email please raise your hand? Opposed? Hard Block?
Recorder hard blocks
Recorder: I think that including phone numbers shouldn’t be required. That email is enough.
Facilitator: Choose your contact information: I would like to vote on the proposal that working groups provide contact information and put them online according to how they determine what is best for their group. All in favor of this proposal? Opposed? Hard blocks?
The floor is now open for announcements that is pertinent to the time, that affects everyone. It is not your personal opinion.
Security Working Group Member: The CBD is very weird, and dangerous sometimes, and when going to the bathroom, or somewhere outside of the park, bring another person along.
Assembly Member: I would say, that we make that mandatory, because I know that a lot of people will think, they’ll be fine, and I’d really hate for something to happen to someone.
Other: I don’t think something mandatory has a place in an autonomous society.
Other2: There’s a small library in the Gazebo. Feel free to take a book, there’s not many, so bring ’em if you got ’em.
Other3: Apart from facebook, there’s lots of social media, that reddit is good as well. You can go to occupy nola reddit, as well as a good place to place information for those of us who are not here.
Facilitator: We have a working google spreadsheet full of needs from working groups. I would encourage everyone to take a look.
Other4: Where is that?
Other5: Google groups, link there. Can someone offer the quickest way to find that, or you can come get a link when I get it later.
Other6: Search #occupynola
Other7: Can we get a hard copy of that list of needs and place it in a centralized location?
Other8: Suggestion: If we make suggestions, hold yourself accountable for that suggestion.
Other9: I just wanted to amend to that suggestion, if you can’t take that responsibility on, make it clear.
Food WG member: We have a few immediate request. In interest of environmental concerns, get your own bowl and spoon and cup. Also, to wash these dishes, we need a lot of 5 gallon water buckets. If anyone knows how to get them, talk to us. Also, I just want to express gratitude to the people who provided food for us today.
Sanitary WG member: There are buckets at the composting toilet that are clean now.
Someone mentioned posting the list of WG’s, can we post the legal number with it?
Legal WG Member: I still have many copies of the legal pamphlet with the number on here.
Other Legal WG Member: There is an individual lawyer who answers that telephone number. Please remember that this lawyer works normal business hours and likes to sleep so don’t bug him if you don’t have to.
Facilitator: Are there any others?
Assembly Member: I will be visiting New Jersey and New York on monday. If there are any messages would like to send to that group personally, I would offer myself as the messenger. If there’s anything we would like to get back from Occupy Wall St. Let me know, I will try my best. My name is Crystal Storm, come up to me and get my email or number.
Loyolla radio students: We have to go, but we would like to radio for the GA. If there’s anyway we could do that?
WTUL Person: My co-dj show ends at 10 o’clock. If you would like to call in and talk over speaker phone on FM radio, get with me.
Assembly Member: I’m not sure which group would handle this, but every saturday I go out with others under the bridge by the nola mission and feed the people there, and if you would like to help, give me my contact info. Info about what we’re doing. This month we’re feeding them breakfast, my partner contacted the company batter blaster. They’ve donated 15 cans of pancake mix. So we have pancake mix. And whatever else you want to donate to feed them breakfast.
Other: My preferred gender pronoun is they or them. Not assuming an individual’s gender identity. Isn’t kitchy, boring, or self-interested. But instead revolutionary and essential.
Integrity WG Member: All integrity sub-committee members, could meet me on the pavilion after this, so we can go over the days events and how we would handle them differently.
Assembly Member: Related to what the person was saying about the lawyers phone number, I have a doctor’s number. I would like to just give that number to the medical working group.
Other: I would like to suggest that working groups make their meeting times and places visible on cardboard, under the gazebo. to avoid misinformation, and so other s can easily plug in.
Other2: If it would possible to also stagger the meetings, so it would allow for multiple participations
Other3: I think that sounds really great, but I think for people who are committed to certain working groups, those people’s schedules will need to be respected so they can go the WG. Everyone can’t be in every working group.
Other4: Suggestion, try to make your meeting times as regular as possible.
Facilitator: I propose a temp check on breaking up into working groups now, with the exception of immediate global announcements.
Integrity WG Member: For people who don’t know what integrity is, we cover security, safety, internal communication between WG. And what slips through the cracks. We are the dog, everyone else is the child feeding us brocolli on the tables.
Facilitator: Break up into working groups, if you would like to join a working group stand up, and meet with those people. That make sense?
Occupynola@gmail.com cc email@example.com
Occupy NOLA – October 9th 7pm Meeting Minutes
New people point themselves out – there are many!
Facilitators explain the people’s mic
facilitator asks for consensus to use this process for this meeting
We reach consensus
facilitator asks – if there are any people that have an agenda item
that they would like to ad, as per the decision made on the previous night
60 percent consensus needed to add agenda item on the bottom
60 opposed means you can add it on the next day
last minute added proposals – added to the end of the proposal list the decentralization of wealth
america’s decentralization of wealth programs
point of process (pop) – we should talk about more local matters
pop 2 – we should talk about anything that concerns us
*pop 1 goes on the agenda*
2. Alfredo – 4 perfect languages – an offer to translate in 4
Turkish, farsi, English, Spanish – outreach translator
facilitator suggests anyone needing translation goes to see him now
suggestion – soapbox time
ethics of speaking to the police
direct action prop
finance prop online donations
earlier general assumably time weekends
working group report backs
list of proposals
vote on agenda
Working group reportbacks
press release – making sure info that the press hasn’t been covering
that is really positive gets out,
direct action group
new group for this meeting, working very hard to get active
“we feel like this compound could be a little more productive, we feel like it’s become a campout in a way”
they took the streets to talk to people about whats going on over here the community doesn’t know we’re here, not being covered by the media working hard with other groups to try to change that, contact many
people to get the word out. they propose starting a street team – DA group meeting at 11am the
following morning, continuous meetings , banner party , paint spray-paint, cardboard, anything
The use of art is very important, we can make a real difference when our posters transform
Everyone’s been focussing on oct 15th, we would like to be apart of
Point of information (poi) – local day of comment DAwg is organizing a march that would include people who are not camping here and are unaware of what we are trying to do, if you’re interested in helping organize this day of action for the 15th next Saturday, please come to the 11am meeting tomorrow,
Poi – anther date, oct 11 – cities night out against crime, march and demo and whatever without having to obtain permit, test run for 15th
Working with media group to develop flyers about the 15th , we feel that we shouldn’t have to wait for the global movement to come up with these dates, it would be nice if these demo’s happened when the fed
buildings were open education – library wants to give a talk headquarters in library, come to learn about classes proposed or to propose classes, you can come 2 hours before the assembly to talk to them meeting tomorrow at question –can there be 2 meetings, one for those who work and one for those who don’t?
working on getting more food and finding places to cook the food
suggestion board, things you want to eat or recipes
bring own plates forks and knives, also try to be clean
poi – man involved with welcome home new orelans organization, offers
larger kitchens possibly if we need it eventually
notebook – date food donations so we know when to use what, what goes
bad first, contact info and meal reports
non profit – if you want to use one to get donations – possibly write
that down in contacts
poi – trying to gain hare krisha support
requests for the future
medic shifts during waking hours – volunteer request, proposed 10 am
to 6pm 6pm to 1 am
2. volunteers with vehicles to offer shuttle service for people with
illnesses or injuries
3. on call medical personnel
4. open support group to get an idea of issues that might be going
On in the camp, tentative 5pm meeting time
5. hoping to get medical training at the camp, because of new people that didn’t get it on Wednesday, details soon
6. mental health training – questions and language to keep us open to people stressed out or have existing metal illness
7. volunteer with social work experience
8. space further out of the main area – they want tents for those areas for relaxation
9. working of finding free phone at medic area
poi What size/kind? – answer – fairground tent,
(facilitator side comment)—-idea of contacting the sheriff’s office
to see if they can give us a tent —-
finance – money accumulating online
the group never consented upon accepting money, will be proposed later
won’t move forward on any other plans, consensus comes first
public safety – Robert
nothing really new, realization, for new people
reads mission statement
looking for volunteers to patrol at night to clean up and keep
it all cool, guidelines for members of nightwatch
sanitation – making sure door in new portapotty is as secure as
possible, trying to make it more comfortable, Stephanie Appleton –
offered her shower to two ladies a day
Concerns about handwashing station,
Facilitator note – Waste management facilities, has foot pump
handwashing units SDT has them, maybe get sponsors to donate them
Poi – compost the brown looking plates
Clean up hill after GA meeting!
Summary of the goals and purposes of the working group (apologies for
we believe in processes to critique and engage occupy new Orleans
….that a structural power analysis and an understanding of histories
is fundamental to see how oppression operates in the world
….in examining the intersection of oppression and power
….there are systematic inequalities in the 99%
….opposition must be addressed at individual, interpersonal,
institutional, and cultural levels
personal is political
call in to question language of occupation
having a global analysis of the US
the US was founded on genocide and built on slavery, this needs to be
US white supremacist and imperialistic patriotism and nationalism and
nostalgia are not progressive for this movement
We know the occupation movement is not a new movement and that we
can’t co-opt or exploit the historical struggle or contributions for
liberation of all time
Our goal is not to be leaderless but engage in a shared leadership
Part democracy, acc and trans
Finally self reliance, self-determination, in our relationships to
each other and prod
Moving away from corporation capitalism and the state
includes tech , media group agreed to not use word all the time
outlines posted today, available on the website
meeting time – 3 pm tomorrow
to learn the nuts and bolts of the process, not necessarily to
volunteer to be a facilitator, but to learn more about the process
floor opens to announcements
1. first meeting of caucus of people of color 3pm? (it was moved after
the announcement, can’t remember when) tomorrow
oppertunity to discuss how people of color feel in this space
2. starting art club, Monday nights after GA
art supplies needed, encouraging art making but not mandatory,you can
do whatever you want, no taboos , not a hierarchical student teacher
class structure, it’s not a class but ,skill share
3. Announcement about not smoking
4. discussion group about hurricane Katrina, for new orleanians to
discuss how they feel about being in this space, all interested come
talk to facilitator Kezia
5. antiracism group, should they be exposed to the class on discussion
of people of color?
beware of fireants at the base of trees in camp, they hurt! ouch!
WC Johnson – community united for change, he was here before Katrina,
from new Orleans, wants to say welcome and enjoy the park
his organization does a picket line every Thursday from noon to pm
against police chief Ronald Serpass against their policies and their
refusal to abide by the wishes of the people of new Orleans,
IN FRONT OF CITY HALL
Randolf scott – classified city workers – works in city hall
group trying to be eliminated by the city of new Orleans, meeting 4821
earhart blvd 5 pm , invitation to participate Tuesday oct 11 little
zion Baptist church
announcement about dance parties
who’s head of the media outreach comities
stencil for occupy nola tee shirts – great to bring to art club
night out against crime – ask for support
critical resistance – PIC abolition org, meeting tomorrow night 6pm at
930 n broad, campaign to abolish fines and fees practices in NO
pax Christi – national anti war group, monthly antiwar vigil
facilitator comment – feeding homeless under the bridge across from
new Orleans mission, donations of breakfast items
good idea – move soapbox time to before GA so that people who come
from the community can have their voices heard without getting caught
up in the process
5 to 7 pm
a chance to tell the group what you’re feeling, why you’re here, what
problems you have, anything else, people will listen and identify
clar questions – 1. will there be any facilitation of the soapbox
can we have a soapbox
concerns about prop
wants her to translate to Spanish
what if theres many people who couldn’t’ get their time by 7?
Acceptable to plan to discuss points regarding soapbox time, at that
Concern about terminology, maybe it could be called sharing time
move it closer to camping site
make an effort to set up livestream for those two hours
it should be less about the process and more loose to be inviting to
name change to sharing time
move to consensus?
Proposal with amendments 1-5
*Consensus reached *
2.Ethics of speaking to the police
If people chose to speak to the police they will not give the police
names or personal info of people in the group, does this require
further discussion at this time?
That we don’t tell the media or police what we’re doing here
Proposal – to amend yesterdays proposal
We don’t talk about anything that goes on here with the police or the
Amendment – you just don’t tell the police what we’re doing and the
media is not part of it
Vote on discussion of proposal
*consensus on proposal with 1st amendment*
Proposal from media group – it would be great to get the press release
out by tomorrow morning, it needs to pass or it won’t go out, no
but hard-blocks will still be accepted
many issues with the wording about “has independently established
points of regional interest”
poi about presenting the release to smaller media outlets before
larger ones to garner support
clarifying question – what are the points of regional interest?
answer – i think when i said that we were talking about things like
the oil spill and problems with OPP and incarceration rates
clarifying question or poi – we as a collective body haven’t
identified or agreed upon these points of regional interest
clar q- where is it being release – ans..gambit and antigravity
-concerns with the urgency of the press release being contrary to the
values of the process
-concern with the discussion of the press release hindering it getting
out in time for people to learn of the protests
-concerns with overriding process
POI – worked as a formal news reporter, timeliness is important
-concern – a conflict between two different activist cultures, one who
does mostly on the ground social work, everyday quality of life, on
the other hand a culture of symbolic movements, which is what this
-concern – not a problem with the release – or that we haven’t taken
the time to define regional points of interest, we’ll eventually get
make it clear that it’s coming from the occupy nola media group
vote for consensus
hear from dissenters
not ready to release something in the name of occupy nola even if its
from the working group, feels like its too soon
antiracism working group has been in contact with other organizers in
city, they may have offended other local organizers, offers to open it
up to adjusting language on the floor
clarifying? – why has the group established local points of interest
without reaching out to local organizers?
the wording is changed to “working to recognize points of regional
problem arises because of the breaking of process
poi – for the sake of coming to consensus it’s asked that we forgive
poi – problem with breaking the process because it excludes minority
Temperature check – can we use consensus to help after we break
dissenters – 1. not fair to break process for some
we should be more easy on ourselves about process in an effort to
vote on breaking process
vote on proposal of media group with amendment
proposal – we propose that the occupation accept online donations and
that the occupation spend money on things that the general assembly
consents on for the greater good, if they’re consented on then we’ll
create a proposal to bring these spending requests to the general
clarifying question – will those vote effect other working groups?
answer – no, we keep separate books
clarifying question – should we be taking money instead of trying to
make a system where we can barter for things we need. doesn’t want to
use the tools of their “trade and game”
concern – i agree, but think that both of these things can coexist,
and later if we need to a proposal can be made to stop accepting
vote on consensus
Occupy NOLA – October 10th 7pm Meeting Minutes
Minutes from 10/10/11 GA
Working Group Reportbacks DIGITAL MEDIA continued…We are working on developing a self hosted open source website so we can do away with google groups we also want to develop a wiki and a forum directly on the website, we’re also working reliable 24 7 wi-fi hot spot.
POI we have someone working on that as we speak
Lastly livestream is obviously up and running, and soon we plan to begin livestreaming around the camp.
POI regarding your dual communities, LA has the highest illiteracy rates, additionally a lot of people in the parish don’t use computers
POI I think he was talking about the digital media group,
POI please see outreach, because we can reach people who are not online by participate in Walk Against Crime
DIRECT ACTION encourage all GA members to distribute flyers about Saturday-Sunday we have contacted local musicians which would encourage a positive second line approach and aid in drawing numbers, we don’t have confirmation, please reach out to performers who would like to participate tomorrow is the citywide night out against crime, and great opportunity for occupiers to extend our occupation to our other communities and to the communities we live in, extend invitations to people we meet on this night our to participate in this
tomorrow at Direct Action meeting at 11am, discussing possible routes about Sat marching group, encourage everyone
having a meeting that allowed folks who work 9-5 to attend, taking a general temperature outside of GA about two items, creating a work group that reached out into the community to help with things like painting, bike repair, etc. not tomorrow the next day, and 2 protesting outside of the federal reserve
POI have strict parameter for the scope and responsibilities are going to be at this time
this is why we want to judge temperature before making any commitments
POI in the interest in making what we do tomorrow work, for this one time I would like to bend process, and add a small proposal. It will be damn near impossible to have GA tomorrow and effectively participate in night out against crime
POP it sets a terrible precedent and I hope we never do it again
Clarifying Question (C) is it just to cancel the meeting tomorrow?
POP that should be discussed when we bring up the proposal later
POI will you post the flyer for the march online
C are questions a part of report backs?
temp check on allowing questions for today in report backs, sending it to the work groups to discuss that
can someone in the facilitation group clarify
questions on clarification, not proposals
a number of times tonight we have skirted the lines of proposal, there seems to be another pattern evolving you must be aware of it
C to direct action, can you please tell us more about tomorrow
POP is this something that can be taken care of after the meeting if it is not hashed out during their proposal
POI it is on the agenda
are there any other groups that need to do reportbacks
WELLNESS continue to please drink your water, we have request for medics to relieve me at my station in the pavilion, shifts are 10-6 and 6-1 you can break it up, we will have a meeting relating to the events of Saturday, we have an open support group 5 pm you are invited to come new fancy flyers that you can come pick up and peruse we also have a new contained for your diabetic needles just thrown around the park if you have one speak to wellness and they will come and retrieve it for you, wellness has a new facebook group, occupy nola wellness working group, google group, we at wellness have received more donations more than I could have hoped for thank you
ENTERTAINMENT for those of you getting tired of seeing the same white male representing 3 working groups, I will keep this brief, we are still planning to do concerts we are looking for performers for marches and protest, whatever you can dream up, using entertainment to spread our message we’ve scheduled a meeting for Wed 5, please run your ideas by us
ACCOUNTING I am one of 4 people on your accounting group, we have about 700 dollars we cannot access there is a very long process, like we can consented last night, we can use that money for stuff, I understand we cannot make it to our point on the agenda, we are taking baby steps that is appropriate breaking brains to give proposal that includes the fact that accounting will never have any opinion on using money, we will help working groups make spending requests to the GA, meeting tomorrow at 6
LEGAL concerning your legal concerns we’re working on them but we don’t know them all so if you working group or individually have concerns reach us online and we’ll get answers to you asap at the legal group google group C besides having legal question would one be of any use if they wanted to get involved?
what do you mean?
Anyone can join the working group you just know how to be able to research. Second point is the emergency number still work, yes hopefully no one will have to use it working on building a coalition of lawyers and non-lawyers to be present for direct action
POI number is available at information and education desk
PUBLIC SAFETY (integrity) we’ve been calling our working group integrity because pub safety is one one concern our main focus is to keep up integrity within the group this includes morale and conveying our message to people wh come through here while most of you are sleeping if you signed up for pub safety patrol know when you are supposed to do that and convene at town hall
POI reminder don’t use names
TRANSPORTATION it hasn’t met at all I guess we haven’t needed it that much i’ve been using my van let us know what kind of vehicle you have I guess we can maybe meet after this
C tonight can you talk about transportation for tomorrow?
ANNOUNCEMENTS CITY HALL HAS A PLACEE CALLED THE CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS WHERE THEY DECIDE LOTS OF THINGS ABOUT LOCAL GOVERNANCE OPEN TO PUBLIC AT 10 AM THERE IS A MEETING ON CRIMINAL JUSTICE if you want to go to be there to be seen OR to share an opinion it is in an auditorium and is televised, maybe a group wants to go to show someone has a presence full calendar available online, meeting on 12th on economic issues
tonight after the general assembly we’ll have ART club in the light, whatever time you can make it show up, also we need donations so please bring some, we meet every monday night, hopefully we can meet more, also one or two people from entertainment club to show up at art-club to discuss a batman play
caucus for people of color meets again wednesday at 2 in pavilion
my bike was stolen today from this general hill there is a description at the bulletin board please take care of your belongings as Utopian as this feels we are not alone so please watch your belongings as well
today I helped start an info table I don’t think this requires a committee or schedule there is sign and a chair, just say hi and engage
sleeping bag left in pavilion accidentally Northface black bag please give it back
sleeping bag got stolen as well, big brown sleeping bag can fit 1 ½ person its not ours so id like to give it back
on thursday at 3 there will be a women’s caucus in the pavilion, ladies and people who identify as ladies to talk about how it should function
tomorrow at 4 co-facilitating a discussion geared to men and masculine persons but not exclusively on how those people can better be in solidarity with women and feminine people and we are going to attempt to organize with women’s caucus so it is accountable to them
POI although i’m sure no one here is named that no names and place no last names
consent to close stack on announcements
DECENTRALIZATION OF WEALTH POI from yesterday is that individual here? Yes your name is ag wildman and spoke for a few minutes in jackson square going to overview your american wealth decentralization program you posted 4500 word version of this on my blog on the morning of the march I put together the short version of it for us today we are the first group to hear this decentralization program we appreciate you are more a writer than speaker, you would like consensus from us on it but do not expect because there is a lot to take ain and there could be too many questions for this evening
POI we only discussed the title of the proposal yesterday
C your group OWS does not have a specific agenda right now and you are getting criticism from that from the press we’re still new but it is something that will be needed and something the nation really needs
POI we are not OWS we are ONOLA, I believe this is better addressed in a working group before it is brought before the GA
proposal ask this wonderful gentlemen to go to media or another working group
c we made an agreement even though we didn’t know what we agreed to, skirting the lines again, is it appropriate for them to speak?
We wait until they are finished to ask POI, temp check SPEAK
it has to start someplace it might as well start in NOLA, consultant in DC solve problems large and small,. If you saw what was coming. Til 2005, after Bush got re-elected , I wrote a book called the Second Coming of Common Sense. 718 pages. August 2, I formed the independent American Peasant Party, on August 30, I became a candidate for President. It has 27 proposals. However, in August, the trend in financial consultants. It took me two days to recover from a video I saw. The video, ninety minutes, objectively details the degradation of our society, the U.S. Dollar, and the inevitable coming of our second Great Depression. It took two days to recover from that, start analysis, and begin working on the problem. Two other people reviewed it. That grim knowledge of our future changed everything. On Sepetember 15, we posted a one stop shop on that crisis, just so that we have a frame of reference on what’s coming. A 1929 style crash, the stock market could lose half its value immediately. For example, a loaf of bread will cost fifteen dollars. Thus food and energy suddenly become expensive and scarce. Home prices will collapse. A real unemployment rate of fifteen percent will soar over twenty-five percent. More people, as the 1930s, will not be able to pay their mortgage or buy food.
Point of information: Part of the definition of proposal, is the word concise.
There will be civil unrest, things will be bad and worse. The one percent will be unaffected, besides hiring more security guards. This is to be a long overdue confrontation, reconciliation in the selfish have,s and the struggling have-nots. The battle is economic fairness. American Revolution brought about democracy and government. Our second revolution, will be a legislative confrontation, and will be a revolution of economics. In preparation, housing prices will be frozen. All foreclosures on houses and farms will be cancelled and off our board. General housing foreclosures will be taken away from owners and be put in a national resident relocation. Every citizen will have a fixed address and never have to fear losing the roof over our heads. Finally, commodity prices will be frozen, for at least six months, their prices will be reduced and have immediate impact around the world. Personal wealth in the US is fifty-five trillion dollars. Millionaires have sixty-five percent, thirty-five percent. We will take fifteen trillion of that and pay off all residential mortgages, we will pay off all existing student loans, we will pay off all existing credit cards, leaving about a trillion dollars. We will have instructed the banks and the Federal Reserve Board, to take down the fifteen trillion dollar debt. Our annual deficit is 1.5 trillion dollars per year. Individual and family monthly cash flow will be greatly improved and will prepare people for the depression. We can’t avoid it. But those transactions will remove most of the pressure on the dollar. We can’t lose the dollar, it is our reserve currency. What do we do to make this happen? We’d like the OWS group to adopt this proposal as their own, to counter Wall Street. It is the only proposal put forth currently to avert that depression, or at least delay it and greatly reduce the pain we have. Greece Italy Ireland and others are on the verge of collapse. We urge the group to adopt the American Peasant Party and my candidacy in the 2012 election cycle. Finally, all the drives of this national grassroots effort, we could recall sixty-seven senators not up for re-election next year. So we can vote ‘em all out. Yes this would be the American people’s electoral revolution.
Would it also be possible for this platform to be available in our library, so we might have time to re-convene.
Can I get a general temp check? Would the gentleman be interested in working with us, if we do not adopt his program, to develop our ideas?
My concern is this continues to support the white man, racist, homophobic system. I would like to see true democracy, true self-governance, true self-sufficiency, which is not alienating, but life-giving instead.
Thank you for your concerted effort. I have a feeling it won’t resonate here. But thank you.
I have a concern with this mostly because it seems if we were to adopt this, we would also be endorsing a political party and candidate.
That’s why I said up front: consensus. Because it’s something that’s coming. And most Americans don’t even know it.
I’d like to re-iterate the concern….
We need something we can own and create ourselves.
My main problem… I don’t want to say problem… but thing. We could create a declaration or document thing ourselves and pass it ourselves.
Yay or nay?
Working group with new info?
still have this proposal
yay or nay? yay
Opening stack for dissent
just wanna say as a group we don’t alienate mr wildman regardless he put forth a lot of work, good ideas, because disagreement, still valuable
POP my understanding, clearly no consensus—no dissenters
facilitator made some nonsense
as dissenter, the gen temp is that we like it but, not accepting it now. Proposal for working group?
POP i’m unclear but, I believe, no counter proposals end this soon please.
yay or nay mystery proposal
any blocks? Yes but, proposal dies no one knows how to do this consensus thing
hat tricks. No for real. Real hat tricks
one hat trick off his foot.
Facilitator, limit number of proposals? 9:35
POI GA tomorrow night?
POI we decided to discussing…
POI shouldn’t we discuss tomorrow night first? I’m so sorry, but we need to talk about DA proposal because of press
POI i’m doing your temp strategically
we need to discuss action before 15th
temp check—we’ll discuss it next
agenda item is go ahead DA
thanks for making this a priority. 15th is global day of action. We want to march in solidarity with world wide movement. Want flyers by tomorrow for night out against crime need consensus only on place and time. Proposed: Duncan plaza at 2 pm.
Opening stack for concerns: protest every day at FED.
POP time later for amendments
POI starting march here at 2? ah, yes, indeed
before amendments, maybe closer to tourists since its a saturday
POC all other details can be discussed at a later time. Only start place and time
concern is if not start then, maybe tourists spots not discussed
POI why not lafayette square?
Duncan plaza most convenient for tourists
POI15th is saturday, lafayette square will be empty
POI banks will be closed 2pm saturday, may limit action.
DAgroup response: Again, DA meeting tomorrow at 11 am for all other details
POI but, all the banks closed
DAgroup response: DA group would be happy to amend proposals
this is not time for amendments, this is concerns
we are not focusing on issues on hand? Are we going to have a DA on Oct 15th?
Consent to close stacks? Sure.
Hopefully DA will be more empowered in the future to announce plans at least two GA s in the future so concerned may join group.
Is that really an amendment?
Since meeting tomorrow at 11, lets just consent on action on october 15th.
I think 2 pm is problematic.
The time can be changed right now so we can make a PR. Most imporatnt to give out at night out against crime.
Friendly amendments to meet at 1?
POI But, the banks will be closed.
DA against banks is fine, pleases do it on your own. Can we please pass this proposal?
POP Friendly amendment, time to proceed.
Reminder, this will be larger march. What about their schedules? One is probablly too early. Will lose number for starting too early.
Proposers repeals amendment. BACK TO TWO.
POP If we start too late, it will be too pointless. They wont be there to see us walk down the street.
That’s not a friendly amendment
What about my other amendment? About the announcing of DA’s?
Consent to close stack
consent on voting
ya or nay? CONSENSUS
temp check on ending early?
POI please read rest of agenda items? Early GA time on weekends; media free zone; may day n.o. Would like to screen film; dog leashes; legal rep us; will we pray; reading agenda earlier; _________________
We will def discuss canceling meeting tomorrow.
POI I have something on prayer. Spoke to proposer, figured out alternative way to present it. May be taken off agenda.
Pressing finance proposal, affects all of us, should vote.
Two pressing agenda items. Consent.
Canceling meeting? Temp check?
Repeated: what else is going on tomorrow
POI—night out against crime in N.O. Really important that we’re involved in our community. This meeting usually lasts way too long.
POI—stack is open for this.
What exactly do we have organized?
Every neighborhood across the city, poor hoods, crime ridden goods, will be having block parties. We can reach these community members there face to face, addressing some of our diversity problems. Meet the community, bring people in, tomorrow night is extremely important. Giving up agenda to expand occupation.
Still confused. Go to our own hood?
I’ll send you the block party list. Need your email address. Go to a different neighborhood, you already talk to your own neighbors.
All at the same time?
6 to 9?
DA meets at 11 am.
Press will also meet after meeting.
POI who wants to do stack?
Consent to close stack?
Open for concerns: just wondering about a plan to ensure that enough people represent at occupied park for when we are away, still need to occupy park. Still have GA for people still here?
We don’t know about plan. Guess there should be one developed in proper group. Don’t have GA so folks who want to participate in both, to not detour people from NOAG.
Concern: Full agenda, another GA time?
POP good idea but, another proposal
POP maybe its an amendment. No one knows
hey, looks like were stuck in process a lot.
If we miss a GA, we might lose people.
Stack open to amendments: what happened to 1pm Friendly amendment to have 1
friendly amendment – the assembly tomorrow could decide to dissolve tomorrow at 7 not a friendly amendment
friendly amendment – this group should make a plan to make sure there are enough occupiers in the park while everyone else is gone poi
friendly amendment – to ask if we can end the meeting and go to the march
poi – alternate amendment – could we suspend this agenda till wednesday friendly yes
POI – if there was going to be a number of people who have to stay here to occupy this space that they should have a GA
poi – it seems to me the GA there are always people absent, even if we consented not to have an assembly, we can’t stop people from having an assembly
addressed friendly amendments suspending the items for tonight and making the first agenda item as to weather to dissolve GA
vote on proposal with amendments **proposal is rescinded**
accounting proposal temp check on proposal
to access our wepay funds we need to a. open a bank account b. put all the money on a single prepaid visa card
Occupy NOLA – October 11th 7pm Meeting Minutes
10/11 Proposal Summary
1. Direct Action
To give Direct Action the ability to decide the routes for marches without needing
amendment – that the proposal includes all pertinent details of marches, not just routes
amendment – under no circumstances, until a consensus has been reached about non
violence will the direct action committee plan any direct actions that involve violence, as
is stated in the previous proposal regarding nonviolence.
The direct action committee is in power to plan marches, demonstrations and other
direct actions, using a consensus based process at their meetings and making it clear to
everyone what they’re planing and how everyone can get involved. Under no
circumstances, until a consensus has been reached about non violence will the direct
action committee plan any direct actions that involve violence, as is stated in the
previous proposal regarding nonviolence.
Consensus was reached
2. Media Free Zone
to create a designated area during the GA where no one is allowed to take pictures or
the media is not allowed to ﬁlm in that area, this is within our rights with the media. The
proposer will use their own autonomy with creating and maintaining this zone.
consensus was reached
Occupy NOLA – October 12th 7pm Meeting Minutes
Art club: monday nights, materials donated, mural on truck (Sunday instead of Monday), art gallery show
POI october 22nd, opening of prospect2
Joe, has asked someone to post updates daily about whats going on at camp, proposed direct actions, classes, volunteer and donation needs, if people from these groups could contact me after the meeting, also offering to be voice for people at camp who’d like to share their feelings about camp online
Caucus for People of Color meeting on Thursday at 1pm
Entertainment: On Friday after the GA we will be showing Betty Boop cartoons and Harland County somewhere near the pagoda
Women’s Caucus meeting tomorrow at 3pm, where female identifying individuals can talk about stuff
Local’s Caucus meeting Friday at 6, meet at Pavillion. local defined as anyone who is a resident of the area before Katrina
EVERY NIGHT AT THIS CAMP SOMEONE HAS BEEN SEXUALLY VIOLATED. Medic encourages everyone to think of their safety and to make this a better place to work, live and interact. Please get involved in public safety. Emphasis on every one’s responsibility for what happens here.
Street Team call out: to help spread flyers for Saturday’s march. meet after the GA
Love Bomb Second Line happening Friday at 9 pm at 2626 Chartres. It is not a traditional second line, it is drum and bass. costumes encouraged.
i met some people who felt that they were not welcome, while you are on site it is very important to engage with anyone passing by. We will be wearing orange bandannas, and you may send them to us
For suggestions of direct action thingys, for suggestions. if you want to write them down and well pass them on
WORKING GROUP REPORT BACKS
SEIU organization, is going to have a teach in at 11, in the pavilion, working with labor unions, who broke the economy
the orleans parish prison…is going to have a teach in sunday at 3pm “occupy NOLA should concern itself with prisons and better network with local populations” flyers are available
still looking for people to propose classes to teach, please specify time date and location
tomorrow there are two classes being offered:
a history of the middle class in the us, the second is
intro to US government
they will be at the pavilion, at 10, but it is listed on the education pillar in the library
Hygiene: we’re serving food for you all, meaning at meals you do not serve yourself
the kitchen is going to be closed for certain hours, mostly it will be closed at night. this does not mean food is inaccessible. we need to work closely with anyone who feels they need food at unexpected hours
our meetings happen every night after the GA, come to that!
This protocol was consensed upon by the assembly:
1.Assess the threat: information between night watch and other integrity group members
2. soft engagement, this is specifically introducing yourself as a representative of this community to the person or persons in questions in heated discussion, arguments, or perceived violent situations, more active engagement is required. etc.
no one is to call the police: we have not empowered ourselves to contact the police
guidelines for integrity liasons on patrol:
all have to remain absolutely sober, for the entirety of their shift
conduct themselves with diplomacy, passion and tact.
during shift should be unarmed, or should have their weapons peace-bonded
during shift change, brief the incoming shift on any developments or concerns
I have a truck
I have a van and a phone number.
saturday meeting cancelled, we will resume our meetings on Monday from 1-3
organized meeting with members of GNORT, Greater NOLA O Round Table. we talked about the way certain members are seeing occupy NOLA, ways they would like to see us support the city in their organizing. respect the history of organizing in NOLA. general excitement about the way our works can mesh up and continuing to work together ***it should be said that there was both negative and lots of positive feedback from organizers.
reconvening on Wednesday, Oct 19 from 5-7 and discussing GNORT and Occupy NOLA teach IN. One or Two reps from each working group being present at this teach in.
if you would like to hear a little bit more about our goals and their goals are come to the meeting
pamphlet Intro to GA: for Saturday, to hand out to people when they arrive back at Duncan
FAQ sheet about who we are and why we are here:
can be submitted by individuals with things that we can generally agree on.
we need help from groups, when we finish we will present them with our responses,
not a manifesto: we are keeping all answers as broadly and simply stated, friendly outreach.
Call out: Someone from working groups, please join us to help answer questions, after GA
Call out: we need a graphic designer or has designer program access
working on website and making improvements. there is a wiki and a forum. privacy part if needed. in process now.
town hall has a computer.
how to use the composting toilets.
go to the bathroom lift up the seat
do your business
cover up your business with sawdust
close the seat
put any toilet paper in the bucket
pee a little bit ok,
please pee mostly in the raingrate thing.
please dont put the toilet paper in the rain grate, not where it goes.
please respect the bathroom as much as possible.
if the bucket is full, please dont poop in it.
if its full find one of us.
tampons go in the trash
working on the pee smell
pick up after yo’self.
take a bag of trash home, in the car with you when you leave.
we keep them next to where you throw yer trash, if you see em, grab em.
compost: right next to trash, trash does not go into compost. no dairy or meat
wants some bands to play and stuff
batman play, batman meets occupy new orleans, if you want to participate, go to next entertainment meeting, we’ll figure it out.
Autonomous empowerment: we help with direct actions, come find us, we will only give you assistance
Permit: Consensed upon not prohibiting people from getting a permit.
we aren’t giving them a route unless we have to in order to march,
legal will advise before we agree to anything
Radios: 4 donated for communicating during the march
if anyone has more radios that op on vhs, please donate
Route: we have consensed on a route but will not release it at this time
Street Team: is organized
AGRICULTURE ACTION GROUP, a new working group: we’re going to make agriculture happen
working on expansion of the town, check us out by the open air tent
medical phone number – 504-919-5287
Call out: we need medics for saturdays march
trainings begin Friday
will be available for all busy ants to rest in
asking for small people furniture to go in that area
new zines and lit at medical station
diabetic disposal station
new forum online
thai massage: Saturday, 5:30 or 6 after demo, before GA at decompression tent,
10 minute sessions, thai massage is based on yoga priniciples, you will lay down and volunteer massage therapist will move your arms & legs to help release tension and stretch your muscles. loose clothing advised
trying to implement a system to get water, before it runs out
Call out: if you have a truck or a van, please help us
we also need more people to help with cooking
New kitchen hours 6-10, 12-3, 4-7, 10-12
mardi gras cups
5 gallon water cooler bottles
if you’re new please contact someone from one of the groups, we need your help! you will help us succeed, it depends on you getting involved as much and in any way that you can
READING OF THE AGENDA
6 tenths interest will be kept, not will be tabled
poi – it was decided that whether these items needed consensus or could be worked on by the proposer without consensus
- use of peoples mic , temp –
- earlier weekend GA
- working groups spokes council
poi – one person from each working group to talk about working group interdependency
- can legal represent us
- make list of resolutions
- nonviolent stance
- invite speakers from the rest of the community to share in front of GA to soapbox
- deciding Saturday agenda at Friday GA, while still allowing new proposals for agenda Sat night
comments – should these remain on the agenda
Comments regarding People’s mic
question: does it need to come to the whole GA?
comment: the use of people’s mic is something we all need to agree to
proposers comments – it’s a way to make the meetings more efficient, i suggest we try to use a PA system to have shorter and more efficient meetings, i understand some people love the PM, others not so much
POP – what we do is read through proposal, have new proposals, and then vet them, which means now we’re saying what’s on the board
New proposals ?
- we make fire ants our official mascots
- talk about the use of point of process, there have been too many being used, might be too many, we’re just loosing time, again.
POP – possibly doesn’t have to be on the agenda, as we learn more about it through use, it’ll become much more clear
POI- facilitators were trying to give a small clinic on the process of the GA
Vetting of proposals: without 6/10ths interest, proposal is
- sent to working group
- added to the agenda of future GAs
POI no one from legal team, so we can’t talk about it
Agenda proposal 4. Can legal rep us TABLED
POI regarding proposal 6. non violence: we already have a consensus on nonviolence, individual reads consensed proposal, maybe we should re-address it when there are more people
TEMP CHECKS on Proposals
Proposal 1: “use of people’s mic”
temp check: tabled for now
arguing about process
Facilitator comment: there’s a space and time to discuss issues, we have a process for the way that we pick what we talk about, i would move to keep with the process we have all agreed with, do not continue to talk out of turn and slow us down further
POI we voted about whether we would talk about this tonight, we will not
Proposal 7: “invite speakers from the rest of the community to share in front of GA to soapbox”
clarifying – allow people who are not usually here to talk about things they want, it will be motivational and refreshing
POI soapbox is at 5pm on the hill, anyone who wants to can do that
POI there was a soapbox today, 7 people were there
temp check – tabled for now
Proposal 8: “deciding Saturday agenda at Friday GA, while still allowing new proposals for agenda Sat night”
clarifying – consider that we’re bringing many people here on Saturday
temp check – passes
Note to readers, we took temp check on all proposals, transcripts are difficult to take at this time, to clarify:
1.use of peoples mic -tabled
2.earlier weekend GA- tabled
3.working groups spokes council -tabled, sent to working groups
4.can legal represent us-tabled
5.make list of resolutions-tabled sent to working groups
POI member of media and member of digital media will collaborate, already working on it
6. nonviolent stance- tabled
7.invite speakers from the rest of the community to share in front of GA to soapbox-tabled
8.deciding Saturday agenda at Friday GA, while still allowing new proposals -passed
New proposals, fire ants and limit on POP: should these remain on the agenda?
temp check – kept
A vibes facilitator enters the facilitators, and facilitators present amended agenda:
use of people’s mic: original proposer doesn’t want to use it, someone else makes proposal
how can that big thing be brought into the crowd (referring to large wheeled diy amp)
i want to envision a movement where there are people all the way back to that building (behind us), i believe that we have to prepare for success, we should continue to use the people’s mic
POP – this is for clarifying questions, non opinions
wouldn’t taking that large thing on the hill be dangerous?
POP – that doesn’t make the proposal more clear
perhaps couldn’t a megaphone be used
POP – suggestion, this is not the time to make a suggestion
for example during stack, when there’s people at different parts of the group, you will bring it to them?
who is going to be in charge of the machine?
what part of having a pa obligates us to using it all the time?
can the concern for using something other than the people’s mic be formed into a working group?
what goes into maintaining this?
How to keep it concise, it would be hard to stop someone from taking the mic, talking forever, and threatening the process
Heard a soundbite from the Boston occupation, it struck me that cops use amplification this (peoples mic) is the way we communicate with us
personally more difficult to think when using the people’s mic, we are losing members of GA each night, part of this is the monotony of this staccato rhythm
there’s a certain amount of individual personality in the way a person speaks, people’s mic is silencing that individuality
I really like using peoples mic, we never consensed to use it, we don’t need consensus to end it, we would need consensus to use a different option
while using peoples mic, it keeps peoples attention
support peoples mic but that doesn’t mean that there might not be situations in which amplification could be useful, whatever happens with this proposal, this amp would be great resource for us
even though the cops in Boston use the megaphone they got shit done if they would’ve all been using the peoples mic they probably wouldn’t have, we should use technology to increase the effectiveness of our communication
act of repetition gets people to talk who may not otherwise speak because they may be too nervous or disenfranchised concerned shy whatever the fuck to start talking.
it is very intimidating to use a mic
it is intimidating to use the peoples mic for the first time but ever since we’ve been using, I’ve never listened to people as much
the proposal as it is going, we would have peoples mic and pa in the same meetings, this is over-complicating the people’s process
this group is small enough right now for a loud enough person to be heard
temp check close stack on concerns? consensus, moving on to
POP person gets on mic and interrupts speaker, this is the issue: you can’t just talk over us, it’s completely disrespectful
people have the option at general assembly to use people’s mic or pa, on their choice, no regulation on what you have to use, and the default would be the peoples mic, amp be allowed for those who have a preference
it is friendly, accepted
we try for a specific amount of time to make that machine work if after 30 seconds it is feeding back, we resort to peoples mic, so we don’t waste time on technical difficulties
it is friendly, accepted
four options 1 peoples mic 2 pa 3 megaphone 4 speak out loud . you do hear me
POP concern from before stack closed that had been ignored, Saturday bunch more support, an opportunity to be more inclusive, larger community of NOLA finds peoples mic alienating and confusing, if we allow amp we will be able to garner support
if this proposal moves onto us using this pa, add on that it not come with a group of disrespectful men that use this machine in way that breaks our unity
proposer is interrupted:
concern: no matter what if this amp is in our lives it cannot stay in the hands of disrespectful people who stayed up at 2 am and called people pussies for not protesting in the cbd
POI this is the first time the pa has been here
POI amp entered our lives last night…
POP this is getting really out of hand and hope the facilitators can come up with a solution to pull us back together or move on
suggest this issue go to the facilitation committee
Facilitator, vote on this? NO does not passes
anyone who is uncomfortable peoples mic can ask for a suspension, at which time they can amp their voice however they want, if it doesn’t work they can call for mic check
proposer: already in agreement with proposal
f this machine is used, it needs to be out of the hands of those men, completely uncomfortable with their disrespectful behavior toward women in particular, it goes to a group of another set of people.
the people who have this pa are divisive to the group, we use a different pa
proposer: not quite friendly, anyone who wants to use a form of communication other than peoples mic they have the right to use any form as long as it is respectful and does not have technical difficulties for more than a minute
lets try the system for one evening if it doesn’t work and we don’t pass consensus on it, then we suspend use of pa immediately
Concern: whether or not you agree with how they have spoken tonight, they came here to try to contribute something, but I find the bullying disturbing
BREAK we howled at the moon
Set up some kind of mediation so if anyone is really disrespectful with amp the person who is offended can seek communication
NO, this is about amp in general assembly
POI this whole country was built before amplification
TEMP check move on to voting on consensus? YES
Proposal with friendly amendments:
People have right to use amp or any other method of speaking that they want as long as there are no technical difficulties that last longer than one minute AND this permission will be used for one GA, then voted on to see if we should keep using it.
Can’t vote on this until we address the disrespect of these people
Can there be a group of people other than the machines owners who facilitate its use?
Propose a working group formed organizing sound amp tech for ppl who do not have the resources for themselves
proposer: NOT friendly amendment
TEMP check vote on vote? GO forward
peoples mic is an important symbolic statement and powerful link to the rest of the movement and deeply poetic
a lot of contention against the people who have the system, can’t use those people’s amp
in general against I am very against middle men especially electronic middle men
POI it’s evident this won’t go through because of this bickering. even if this person was allegedly being disrespectful to women, we reacted with a mob attack when he was just attacking like an idiot. hope we can laugh at ourselves
something to be said for the verbal currency people’s mic provides. repeating the words makes them the people’s. in a community in which everyone hears every word in the same way, difference in the amplification will lead to power attached to the different words
POP we make our decision by consensus, on this issue we wont make 90 percent, let’s table it
Table issues? Majority want to table issue
Dissent: this has become a much larger issue. several women have expressed they feel disrespected: you cannot say those feelings are illegitimate. I don’t understand who will be in control of this device.
Facilitator: going to move on from talking about this issue to issue of fire ants
Proposal: this unfortunate issue of people’s mic is still really important to everyone, but it is my turn to make a proposal. we can talk about this again at tomorrows general assembly.
I propose make fire ants our official mascot. We have invaded their space and ruined their homes; they bite us they sting a lot. to be aware that we have occupied an already occupied space which was fully functioning community itself, let’s let fire ants represent us.
can we make paper mache costumes?
individuals with access to diatomaceous earth be able to use it?
VOTE majority for but there are a few dissenters.
DISSENT: proposer votes to take this issue to another time
Proposal: on saturday night we’re hoping to bring the most people back here than have been here since the first march
BROKE OUT INTO BIG SMOKY BRAWL WITH DUST, photographed
Facilitator reasons with divisive GA: “who thought this would be easy? we are going to fight, it is worth it.”
POI our first ever consensus: to not engage in violence towards each other, this includes our personal space, our physical well-being, saying verbally harmful things and symbolically harmful things. To people here who have just broken that code, they should leave because we have a consensus that you are not allowed to act that way toward people here
POP good chance for mediation this is a skill were going to have to learn throughout this movement, if we don’t learn how to mediate, we are going to split into factions , please come talk to me if you’d like to.
move on to facilitated mediation? CONSENSUS
restate proposal to ask Friday’s GA to decide what will be on the agenda for Saturday night, new proposals can be made Saturday night. intention is that we’re bringing in a lot of people in that are entirely new to this process, would like to have a GA that appears well oiled that focuses on real issues, an assembly that if it becomes contentious, it is contentious about real issues.
pamphlet on GA
media group is preparing just that for people for saturday
concern for people here that it is not just about themselves
are there real issues? working groups have posed proposals?
anyone can give proposal
some people are making attempts to push other people away, none of us are perfect we all make mistakes, lets try to get along
VOTE? CONSENSUS proposal passes
move to close GA any objections? CONSENSUS
10/27 Notes from Occupy NOLA
Occupy NOLA 10/27
I really do support and encourage what is being attempted at the Ocupations. Reading through this, though, that may not be clear. I went to encourge and to observe, and that I have done. So I encouraged, and now the following is what I observed. Some came to change America, some came because they have no voice, and some came because they had no choice. Others came for the wine, women and drugs. I’m not sure where I fall in those catagories, probably all of them in part. Although they are labeled as a bunch of dirty, stinking hippies unfocused and inprepared, I didn’t see that. I saw a microcosim of America, a failed experiment. I saw the truely dedicated trying to convince the disenfranchised that they matter. I saw the jobless that have given up on getting non-existant jobs resigned to party like it was the end of the world because, to them, it is. I saw people with good jobs who left their homes to live in tents in a park tryin to get ahold of what little freedom they have left. I saw politicians as the enemy, the press as their lackies, and the police as preservers not of peace or order, but the pocketbooks of those not present. I saw the terrifing reality that without some serious reworking of our failed system, violence is inevitable. There is a reson they call us the unwashed masses. Not because it is illegal to set up showers in a public park, but because the “washed”, the 1%, bathe in money and are not into sharing the oceans with us, the 99.
Forums and Leaders in a “Leaderless Movement”
With the temporary disappearance of all forums and “hacking” on both the facebook page and OcupyNola.org, put together with the attitudes and actions at the actual site, I have been left with certain impressions of why there is so much confusion and infighting. Opionion needs to be controlled. There are leaders, and those leaders need to control every aspect of this action while producing the illusion that the people, the General Assembly, is in charge. This is not the case. The General Assembly is an inconvience to those who have taken control of Occupy New Orleans jst as congress is an inconvience to the president. So are the forums and discussion groups. Therefore they need to be eliminated, using hacking as an excuse. I do not think this is the case. The hacking has come from the inside, not to destroy or illegitimize the action, but to control it.
Upon first arriving, at about 10pm,, of course our first concern was parking. Avery Alexender park is surounded by parking spots, but all are metered with some modern parking meter system which allows one only two hours. We met a man with a pitbull who promptly tried to sell us any type of pit we ever wanted. He advised us it was not very smart to park at the park, but he would take us across the bridge where he could personally gaurentee the safty of our vehicle. He insisted that if we tried without him, our car was a gonner, and the people in the hood all knew, no feared him and his family so our car would be safe.
We asked abour four other people and deduced that it was safe to park at the metered spots until 8am, and found a ticket on one car that was issued at 11:26 am. Poor soul. The police parked immediatly in front of our car about 1am, and I recognized one abosolutly beautiful lady from my first visit going to a truck across the street from our car. She explained to me, while brushing aside her curley locks from her left eye, that the building the truck was in front of was under construction, so that side of the street was essentially free parking. But the police would not start ticketing the cars on our side of the street till at least 9am.
At 8:30, when we were getting ready for my appointment, I moved the car to the last spot on that side of the street. After my appointment, about 1, we passed a meter maid ticketing a line of cars and I said “I hope you didn’t get mine.” She didn’t.
As a smoker, it is hard to attend an event such as this. I believe in the concept of providing for all who ask, as well as a bad habit is one which you refuse to share. Therefore I went through four packs of cigerettes in the 10 hours I spent at this event. That is why I was suprised and amaxed by thee good man strolling about yelling “Tabacco, free tabacco. Tabacco” I gave him a dollar for his efforts.
The other thing that struck me funny was the catch. He had no papers. Hewas giving away free tabacco BECAUSE he had no papers. At a place labeled as full of pot smoking hippies, NO ONE had papers. I recommended the wrappers off of tampons, if he had the nerve to ask the ladies of child bearing age for them. They do come through in a pinch.
The first real person we encourted was a lady who was not much like by the powers that be. She was trying to give away tents to the people that had none, and I guess was using her personal sacrifice to push her private agenda at the action. There is a bible verse that goes something like “when you help, be careful you don’t use your works to try and take over” I’m paraphrasing, but that is what I felt. If you, out of the goodness of your heart, spend money you earned to provide tents for those in need, you can’t get upset when you give away a tent and they sell it for crack. Or tear it to bits. You have given it away, and therefore have no claim to it. If she wanted to reserve claim, she should set up her little tent circle, and allow people to USE them. Then she’d be like mayor of a little tent section…
As I was speaking to her on this point, a man approached us with a blanket. He offered, and ever so kindly, to sell us a blanket. For like a hundred dollars. He was obviously mentally ill, and after some humoring, set it down like it was infected and run off. We took a little tour with Dalia, chatted on the state of the camp, on “itegrity” and leadership, and then we were found by a man who needed a tent and greeted us with “Jesus, NOLA, peace”
Soon after meeting Dalia, Micheal found her. He was going to be tentless, and praise God, she was giving them away. He was very friendly, and greeted us with “Jesus, NOLA, Peace” Then we were off to find him a parking spot. We wandered into what I would learn was the homeless section, in the flat field closest to city hall, and no one seemed to have a plan as to where to set up the camp. Being that is was going to be his spot, I felt he should decide as to where.
He led us into the center of a circle of tents where a blanket had been set up with various camping goods, and he started to set up his tent. A beautiful young lady in skin tight shorts and a striped shirt came over and started yelling about not setting up there. She was mean spirited and confrontational. I advised Micheal that setting up a tent in someones living room was not the best idea when she chastened me “This is NOT our living room!” Micheal responded “Jesus, NOLA, peace.”
We found a man named Horus who led us to the edge of the encampment,and helped us set up the tent for Micheal in the dark. Helped, heck, he practically set it up for us. Later, I saw Micheal cleaning up the pavilion, and he kept bringing me clothes. I tried to make him stop, and after I had enough, I started talking to him in spanish. At one point I told him “Heyseus, NOLA, shaloam” and he got angry at me “Not Heysues, JESUS, JESUS” It worked, and he stopped burying me in clothes.
Micheal I surmised, was homeless, maybe one who had gotten kicked out from under the bridge. He ad found a home and fulfillment in the Occupation. He was mentally challenged, and I would say, the best media represenative and lawyer the action could possibly ever find. I doubt they have the instinct to .regard him as anything more then a burden or nuisence.
Supported by City Hall
I listen to WRNO. Alot. The one that drives me the craziest is James Parker. I mean, congrats on the Saturday evening show and all, but c’mon James, really? I first blew a fuze over James when he said “Jesus said that if you give a man a fish, he eats that day, but if you teach a man to fish, he eats for life. I guess he never heared of dat good ole fishin license. He also never really read the bible.Jesus never said that. No, Jesus just fed people fish. He told the fishermen to leave their jobs and follow him. He told the rich man to sell all they own and give the money away. Jesus was not a capitolist. Follow him, dude.
When Mr. Parker got around to reporting on the Occupation, that is all he could do is talk to the innovative and practical way the occupiers were dealing with their lack of a bathroom. He didn’t describe it as innovative or practical. He described it as a catbox. It’s like camping, Mr. James. You make do.
But then, lo and behold, the city of New Orleans decided that it supported the occupation and gratiously provided four port-a-johns for the participants. I means, in word, they may publicly state their dissent, but in fact, in DEED, by providing the johns and the power, the city has condoned and supported the action. Unlike James Parker, who is only looking for any excuse to degrade and demean the people who are honestly suffering to participate the only way that is left.
If politics does not work, voting does not work, and the press, like Parker, does nothing but attack the downtrodden, what is left? James, you are just a misguided spokesman for the confused, bitch boy and yes-man of the likes of Mr. Burns. You are Smithers. You are only seeking the favor of your sponsors and audience by degrading a people brought low by a society that pretends to care, if it cares at all.
You talk about welfare and free-care and phone give aways, when really these programs are used as an excuse to pay people less and give fewer hours. These programs are allowing the rich to get richer, and the poor to have nothing but free food, free medical, and free phones. I know a lady that had been trying to pay rent and bills at two minimum wage jobs while attending college and who is afraid, after over a year on the job, to ask for a raise because she cant afford to lose her job. She works sometimes three days a week and thirty people are waiting to get paid that little. She CAN’T make it without food stamps. And you act like SHE is the problem. The problem is the boss will not provide medical care, and will not pay overtime or a living wage. It cuts into profits. They are not hiring people who need to survive. They are enlisting slaves to volunteer because they have no other choice. NO OTHER CHOICE.
“This isn’t a protest or a demonstration. It is an occupation. We don’t need to DO anything. We just need to be.” I don’t know who to attribute this quote to, but it rings true. “Why are they there?” some have asked me, and that sums it up. What seems to matter to the “powers that be” is what do we want? It has been expressed over and over again that the occupation is an anti-capitolist movement. I don’t see that, and I have been there. This is what the people who want it to fail say. I want it to succeed.
Money is not freedom of speech. If that were the case, then it would mean that the poor have no voice, and is that YOUR America? No, Campaign contributions, lobbying and excutive positions for politicians in companies of major contributors is bribery. What is being mis labeled as an anti-capitalist movent is an amagamation of discontent. Sometimes hard to nail down, but easy to sum up if you look at the little black heart of the problem. Get the money out of politics. Our culture is capitalist, but our government has been bought off.
I was suprised and impressed to see acontainer garden started near the homeless section of the encampment. Probably about fifty pots I am a bit confused by the choice of plants. Cucumbers, melons, pepers, Almost all plants that will not make it through the first frost. It was explained to me that a greenhouse was planned. I would like to suggest plants that will make it through the cold weather:
Greens, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Cabbage, Brussel Sprouts, Snow Peas, ?Potatoes?
“Dude, where’s my shoe?” Imagine the drunk guy, stumbeling around, at one point right through the center of our blanket kicking over tea all over the covers and a ballcap, screaming, “I lost my shoe. I only have one shoe, wheres my shoe?” for SIX HOURS with a backpack on and his asscrack hanging out so far pumbers looked away.MY SHOE. THat is entertainment.
At one point, I rushed off my blanket, almost half asleep, to calm a man he had punched in the jaw and help him, while he rubbed his cheek, off the ground. A little time later the two were hugging so much I thought they were going to have ass sex in the port-a-john. Thank Jesus they didn’t. What happened was the shoeless wonder was so sorry he started chasing the man he decked around screaming “No, punch me in the face. PLEASE. Hit me. No, c’mon. Then we’d be even. Punch me in the face. C’mon!”
Later this drunken moron started it again. It musta been about 3am when he went to the pots where a garden had been started, picked up some poor infant plant in its bed of dirt, and started beating himself in the head, spillin dirt everywhere. This came close to another fight with someone who gave a care. Then he went back to looking for his shoe. Loudly.
At about four he settled down, had given up on his shoe, still had his backpack on, and was argueing at the top of his lungs with an advocate for native americans. Something about how the advocate always had to have the last word was the last word, and I was glad to hear everyone groan, give up, and seperate to pass out.
Fluffy Dog Named Winston
As we laid there and tried to sleep around 2am, I overheard an exchange that tickled me. A lady approached a man and asked “Do you have a little fluffy dog?” There was a long pause, followed by a long pause. I heard gears grinding and smeled a thick oily smoke. He said, “uhm.” Followed by a “uhm, ye-yeah” immediatialy followed by a click, a whirring noise, and a “Yes. YES!”
She said, “Do you have a girlfriend. Pause. Grinding. Oil smoke. “um. uhm. y, ye, YES!”
She said,” well, I want to go to sleep, and they seem to be at my campsite, in my blankets.”
A little later there was a confused stirring about fifteen feet from us on the other side. A little lady stood, holding her cute little dog tryig to figure out what was going on. The owner of the site in question slipped into the blankets and the girl and her dog stumbled around until someone gave her a blanket, and she fell back asleep.
I had the pleasure of meeting Ms. Robin on my first visit to OccupyNola two weeks prior to this visit. I was glad to see her around 1am. She had a slight limp, and was wearing a dress, but I recognized her immediatly. She seemed so small and frail, but in that weakness, I recognized her by God’s strength. Robin had described herself as a dropout on our first meeting. She left everything to learn more about Jesus with the homeless under the bridge. Occupy presented her with an opportunity to study under a new group of people, and little did she know but some of those under the bridge had been forced to join her soon after when the city saw fit to remove the rest of the homeless from under that bridge.
So is one of my favorite parts of this occupation, ready at all times to talk about Jesus,and open and receptive to prayer. I am glad she has found family among our people, and encourage her to be a humble and receptive advocate of gentile, communistic way our Lord led us to pursue. What was Jesus’s first miracle? And who are the modern day Pharasies? She reminded me of Shane Clairborne’s “Irresistable Revolution” once again. The differance between the Widows two mites and the Pharasies 10% is the widow is giving everything, and it is worth alot more then 1% of the 1%’s. because it is everything. If the 1%’ers gave 99%, they would still have more then the average person. Jesus didn’t ask the rich man to give 99% though. He told them they had to sell it all and give the money to the poor. Robin deserves it. I know this.
Head Over Heals
At one point I looked up to see a girl walking to my left, she stumbled, and I though she was going to take a header into the grass. She did. Sorta. She fell on top of her head, and her body followed over her, then her legs, and she landed flat on her back. She got up and started walking to my left again when a man yelled “Hey, this way. HEY!” and she turned around. She rejoined her man and he said,”Where are you going? You don’t know. You don’t know? I should beat your ass!” And I chuckled. Young love is blind. And stupid.
It was 4am when we finally got, I mean were allowed to sleep. Sleep is a loose term here because I was worried about A:the car, 2:Someone walking on us and z:Someone stealing a shoe. At 5:29am, a drunken man stumbeled upon the drunk section yelling “where is everyone, what are you, a buncha zombies?” “Hey. HEY!” I responded.
“Dude, it is 5:29 in the morning!”
He stumbled over, gratefully exclaiming “Oh, thank you SOOOOOOO much” loudly. My fiance stirred slightly. He said “I wondered what time it was. Where am I?”
I said “Dude, you are on the freaking PLANET EARTH, where there are 4 billion humans who require at least 4 hours of sleep a night. We have had an hour and a half.”
He replied smartly “I know I’m on the planet earth. Sorry.”
On the south side of the park is city hall; Avery Alexender is framed by a ten story parking garage on the west side and a road that has been closed on the east. Because we had parked under it, I had spent alot of time looking at the building on the North side throughout the night. I noticed details, like the nine covers missing out of eighty air conditioners under eighty windows. That is why, at sunrise the next morning, it was strange when someone pointed out the windows that had just been opened on the abandoned building. And what was really strange was that boxes were piled up inside that window, obscuring any view inside that room. That is, it was told me, where the camera’s were set up. Better cameras then snipers I guess.
Train (Car) Wreck