General Assembly Minutes 21 OCT 2011 (7 PM)

Main Facilitator: Matt. Stack Facilitator: Craig. Minutes: Treesong.

GENERAL DISCUSSION

PROCESS: Introduction to Consensus

  • The main facilitator explained our consensus decision-making process.

Summary of Minutes of Previous General Assembly

ANNOUNCEMENTS

  • Beyond Coal is also engaged in a struggle for the 99% and against the 1%. They invite everyone to get involved in the local campaign to decommission the coal plant on the SIUC campus. Talk to Adam for more information.
  • Bucky Dome Day was a smashing success. Bill Perk talked for an hour and a half about Bucky’s paradigm. John Davies from architecture also spoke. The dialog went well. Let’s do this again sometime.
  • Kyle tracked down information on legal assistance available through SIUC. Student Legal Services will not represent students vs univ. Ombudsman will. No help from student rights. Student life doesn’t know about demo policies .
  • Our site was visited today by an SIUC police officer. He seemed supportive and friendly, however, and spoke with us under our canopy.
  • Pass on the contact information for Rita Cheng and other administrators to parents etc. The more calls, the better.
  • Someone from local house called Lost Cross visited yesterday. We invited Lost Cross to join us for tomorrow’s march.
  • Occupy Carbondale volunteers will be at the Farmer’s Market from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. to hand out flyers for the 11:30 a.m. march.
  • Jason talked to National Lawyer’s Guild and was referred to someone from the Chicago branch. If we get them the text of the policy, letter from the administration, etc., they can help.
  • Occupy Carbondale was mentioned among a short list of Occupy sites in the Washington Post, a national news outlet.
  • A letter has also been sent to the ACLU regarding recent events at the occupation site.
  • We’ve added 8 to 10 am to signup list. The star next to this indicates the special importance of this shift. Sign up tonight!
  • If one slot on the night watch list has 3 names and another one is empty, go for the empty one.
  • Rich Whitney has been in touch. Treesong sent him a copy of the letter from the administration. Rich will review the information and offer advice as possible. However, he is leaving town again on Sunday.
  • Has anyone found a phone? A phone is currently missing.
  • The Minutes Committee and Cleaning Committee are still looking for new members. Contact Treesong to get involved with either.
  • Someone from Occupy Carbondale is going to Occupy Las Vegas.
  • Brent would like to pass on one of his Occupy-related contacts to other Occupy Carbondale people to offer a diversity of perspectives. Contact Brent if interested.
  • The supply tent is up. We are now moving items to supply tent. Personal items should be placed in the left side compartmenet. Community items should be placed on the right side.
  • if you’re talking in Gaia House, try to remember to go across the street  and talk in order to support the occupation.
  • There was reportedly a recent ruling of note in the Supreme Court of Maryland. Any foreclosure in past 5 years is deemed illegal due to the questionable lending practices associated with said foreclosures.
  • Obama announced the full withdrawl of troops from Iraq.

PROPOSALS

PROPOSAL: The General Assembly of Occupy Carbondale makes the following official statement: “Democratic space is a twenty-four hour a day, seven day a week phenomena. A common view of democracy denigrates democracy as something that happens once every so often when the citizens gather to express their opinions via ballots. Occupy Carbondale believes that this perspective is both dangerous to democracy, and completely incorrect. In our experiment establishing democratic spaces, we feel that the activities of life; including protest, conversation, group decision making, eating, sleeping, and working are all vital components of democracy. We believe that democracy is a grand experiment, and we demand the right to practice the creation of democratic space on all public lands, including the activities necessary to protect the health and safety of all of our demonstrators as we see fit. In our current situation, this means that we believe that sleep is a part of the content of our speech.”

  • Discussion: The proposition was modified to include “as we see fit” as listed above. Also, Adam says that he knows of legal precedent for the assertion that sleep can be a form of political speech.
  • RESPONSE: Consensus

PROPOSAL: Recognizing that in nature it has rained, and will continue to rain, Occupy Carbondale believes that precipitation is always-already imminent.

  • RESPONSE: Consensus

PROPOSAL: The term “General Assembly” refers to our regularly scheduled assemblies. Other assemblies that are called spontaneously due to special circumstances are called “Special Assemblies”.

  • RESPONSE: Consensus

PROPOSAL: The General Assembly of Occupy Carbondale recognizes a need to hold Special Assemblies in order to make decisions when dealing with “authorities” in certain unusual or crisis situations. However, Special Assemblies should not be empowered to make agreements with said “authorities”.

  • Discussion
  • RESPONSE: Several blocks
  • Discussion: Since this is a significant modification to our consensus decision-making process, we need to think it over carefully and word it properly.
  • RESPONSE: Withdrawn

PROPOSAL: The General Assembly of Occupy Carbondale makes the following official statement: “Occupy Carbondale prohibits the possession or use of any currently illegal drugs or alcohol at the occupation site.”

  • Discussion: This has always been the policy of Occupy Carbondale. However, someone looked back over the minutes and realized that this had never been stated officially.
  • RESPONSE: Consensus

PROPOSAL: Send an official invitation to the Chancellor and administration via letter to attend the morning General Assembly.

  • Discussion: The exact nature and wording of the proposal was reworked significantly several times over the course of discussion.
  • RESPONSE: Several blocks
  • Discussion: Intervention. Three speak for the proposal and three speak against it. What is purpose of this invitation? There’s already general invite. Maybe we should invite them at some time other than a General Assembly? If we do invite them, maybe we should make it the evening General Assembly?
  • RESPONSE: Majority block

PROPOSAL: Adjourn

  • RESPONSE: Consensus

SUMMARY OF CONSENSUS

  •  The General Assembly of Occupy Carbondale makes the following official statement: “Democratic space is a twenty-four hour a day, seven day a week phenomenon. A common view of democracy denigrates democracy as something that happens once every so often when the citizens gather to express their opinions via ballots. Occupy Carbondale believes that this perspective is both dangerous to democracy and completely incorrect. In our experiment establishing democratic spaces, we feel that the activities of life, including protest, conversation, group decision making, eating, sleeping, and working are all vital components of democracy. We believe that democracy is a grand experiment, and we demand the right to practice the creation of democratic space on all public lands, including the activities necessary to protect the health and safety of all of our demonstrators as we see fit. In our current situation, this means that we believe that sleep is a part of the content of our speech.”
  • Recognizing that in nature it has rained, and will continue to rain, Occupy Carbondale believes that precipitation is always-already imminent.
  • The term “General Assembly” refers to our regularly scheduled assemblies. Other assemblies that are called spontaneously due to special circumstances are called “Special Assemblies”.
  • The General Assembly of Occupy Carbondale makes the following official statement: “Occupy Carbondale prohibits the possession or use of any currently illegal drugs or alcohol at the occupation site.”
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