Day 47 - 7pm General Assembly Minutes

Date/Time:  11/8/11, 7:30pm start
Location:  Congress & Michigan
Attendance Count:  92
Moderator:  Trina, Stack: Dave, Timekeeper:  Michael, Notetaker: Karen
Meda Present:  Mexico City asks us to chant “Occupy Pilsen” for viewers in Mexico

COMMITTEE ANNOUNCEMENTS:

  • Arts & Rec - Trina: Concert at the Horse on Sat. Details on Facebook and new Twitter @OCArtsandRec. Also, we want to do political theater next week with giant puppets. Talk to Trina or e-mail arts@occupychi.org to get involved. Planning an Occupy version of A Christmas Carol – a love story about a banker who finds his morality.
  • Direct Action - Dave: Meeting right after GA at 9PM. Lots of important events happening so everyone make an effort to come. [directaction@occupychi.org]
  • Organizational - Taylor: For those arrested, please tell Taylor what possessions you are missing so we can clear out our storage and get those back to you [info@occupychi.org]
  • Outreach - Babur: We are in the process of adding Outreach for High Schools, College, & Neighborhoods. We are having weekly meetings to strategize. Come find Babur after GA for meeting [outreach@occupychi.org] Also, in contact with a couple of ladies who are offering Thanksgiving Dinner to Occupiers, need donations to contact Babur for the info.
  • Internal Coordination - Mike: Great meeting yesterday, lots of committees showed up. Next meeting is tomorrow at Starbucks at 6PM. If too many people we will migrate to DQ. If any committee has not currently received the temporary budget framework, please see Mike so all can be on same page until we have a more permanent solution
  • Civil Liberties - Brit: If you were arrested and want to organize to fight legal troubles, give e-mail to Britt. Petition to sign for all charges dropped.
  • Donations - Peter: We handle our cash donations with a notebook where we write amount, date, what the donation was, then have it signed by witnesses & Peter. Two copies are made. All Peter involves self with in securing money and keeping track of it. He does not make decisions about who spends it or how it is spent. The money is held in a secure location under two layers of lock and key at the church. Currently we have around $4100. Major purchases at this point: HD Camera for livestreaming $600, supplies for our second taking of the Horse $500, funding the trip to Washington D.C. $400. There are a few other smaller money allocations which will be passed on to someone else to update GA with tomorrow once records are updated. Both Peter and Seth have to be present in order to access the donations box, as each has keys for a different lock layer. Since Peter is leaving, we need a person to step up and handle this securely. Peter suggests a man named Kindle who has been out every night and has been a great help throughout our movement.
    Abel:  We had a meeting with a lawyer to discuss our proposal. Meeting went really well. The lawyers will look at some legal documents and get back to Donations committee tomorrow with
    feedback. There was a person from the 8th Day Center for Justice in the meeting. They gave us detailed information on how to handle our donations. Tomorrow we will have a Donations meeting with all committees to discuss budgets and establish a Budget committee. Coordination team will assist with organizing meeting, tentatively after GA. Final meeting plans will be available online.
    • Moderator suggests that Donations team be contacted directly for any questions and concerns [donations@occupychi.org]. This is a very important conversation and all should be involved.
  • Housing - Zoe: Meeting tomorrow after GA, meeting at the Horse and walking to meeting site together.
  • Spiritual Affairs - Lucky: We saw much support for our call to assistance for initiating 12-step meetings. We would like to ensure a diversity of input with people addicted to substances, behaviors, and other addicts. We would like to hold our third spiritual circle this coming Sunday for the Occupy Eucharist. This Sat Nov 12 2-3PM Board of Trade Plaza will be our second spiritual circle, a multi-faith devotional gathering & potluck in celebration of the birth of the Bahá'u'lláh, founder of the Baha'i faith. Please bring a passage of your sacred writings or anyone else's to share at the circle.
    Sam:  Spiritual Affairs had our first group meditation from 4:30 to 6:00 PM in the rain today. It was awesome. We will continue these group meditations Tuesdays at Lasalle/Jackson at 4:30.
  • Campus, Outreach - Maxmillian: On Sunday, we founded a campus-wide group against student debt that is meeting every other Sunday. They are meeting this Sunday to discuss some important upcoming events. On 11/14, there is a University of Chicago protest against Henry Paulson & Condoleezza Rice. Also another event 11/17, Global Day of Action. Loyola University is having meetings every other Friday.
  • Photo & Video - Emily: Emily manages the Video portion of this committee, James manages Photo. They are working on a dropbox for Occupier media, film, digital, etc. They are hoping to create a documentary. If any questions, e-mail directly at media@occupychi.org
  • Conflict Resolution - Abel: Speaking for Rebecca: Conflict Resolution can be reached at conflict@occupychi.org. They are looking for new members.
  • Community, Outreach - Kelvin: We're going to have a meeting 3-5PM Friday Grace Place 637 S Dearborn, inviting community organizations from all over Chicago to see how we can collaborate on actions, trainings, and events. Talk to Kelvin or Dave after GA if you are affiliated with any community organizations.
  • Education: John: Teach-ins: Friday is Veterans Day. Someone from Iraq Vets Against the War and Veterans for Peace are going to be hosting a teach-in at 3:00. At 4:30 Critical Theory & Critical Practice. Sunday the 13th Teach-in on The Situationists at 3PM, 4:30 Concepts of Democracy in the Occupy Movement. If you have teach-in ideas or would like to join Education comm, speak with John after GA. See full schedule with descriptions here. [education@occupychi.org]


PROPOSALS FOR FUTURE VOTING

  • Occupation Chicago Spring (view here) - VOTING WED. 11/9
    This is a two-part proposal. First part is heavy community service from Occupy Chicago. Work soup kitchens, deliver warm clothes, occupy foreclosed homes. We need to help those the 1% forgot. We will also be holding a rally in the spring, proposed between April 7 & April 14. We are going to take a camp peacefully & non-violently, ask many other organizations to join us. Will take a larger role with Occupy the Hood. We will adapt to the conditions that are unique to Chicago. We have a government that is opposing us, police that harass us, and harsh winters. We will take a stand our way. The vote for this will take place tomorrow.
  • Occupy The Barrio - stack line and voting will happen after added to online forum for 24 hours
    Mario: Tonight we launch the Occupy the Barrio initiative. This is in conjunction with the Neighborhood Outreach Committee. We wish to gather support from the immigrant community for the
    Occupy movement and vice versa. Five years ago there was a movement of millions of workers in the streets across the country for the legalization of everyone. It was multicultural and internationalist in nature. Occupy the Barrio wants to revive that movement. The immigrant people are a natural ally to the Occupy movement. Immigrants are some of the most marginalized people in the U.S. We did not create massive unemployment and national insecurity. We are not the problem. The 1% is the problem. We want to be part of Occupy Chicago.
  • Fair Elections Now Act [view more info here and proposal here] - stack line tomorrow
    Patrick: Fair Elections Now Act represents the best opportunity we have short of a Constitutional Amendment or a radical overhaul of our system to address the corrupting, democracy-destroying influence of money on our government. It is proposed that Occupy Chicago issues a statement of conditional support of this Act. (reading of Fair Elections Now Act)
    This Act offers up money from taxing military contractors. If a person running for the House only accepts small donations under $100, they will have access to this tax money for funding. The details can be found under Potential Proposals on the forums. I propose we support the Act under these conditions:
    1) We support this bill but do not believe it comes close to addressing fundamental problem of money in politics. This is the first step in a long journey.
    2) Right now in order to qualify for this money, you have to get a minimum number of signatures and raise a minimum amount of money. We say if you have enough public support, you should get the public money. This makes it more useful for 3rd party candidates.


PROPOSALS VOTED ON TONIGHT

  • Direct Action:  Action at Henry Paulson/Condoleezza Rice Conference (11/14) - VOTE PASSED (0 opposed, 1 abstains)
    Full proposal in the forum.
    Larissa: I am a student of University of Chicago. Often my school has awful people do presentations pretending to be role models. Henry Paulson & Condoleezza Rice will be speaking at the school. We want the Occupation to be there to show them our discontent at the job they did and continue to do. The event is Monday November 14.
    Direct Action Committee in collaboration Occupy University of Chicago proposes that Occupy Chicago protests en masse on the midway directly in front of the building where the talk will be held. A rally will start at 6PM when the doors to the event open. This will continue until after it ends around 8:45PM. This rally will feature chanting, speeches, political theater, and the Monday evening GA. This outdoor rally will be coordinated with a smaller indoor action in which U of C students will use the people's mic to give a counter-introduction summarizing Paulson & Rice's years of service to the 1%.
    • Point of Clarification - Dave: Facebook post has been sent out asking for ideas for political theater outside this action. It has gotten a huge response.
    • Stack:
      • Have we worked with CPD on this action? Do we honestly think we will get that close?
        Direct Response - Kelvin: We have informed the university that we are planning a rally outside. It is public property on the midway so technically they cannot do much.
      • If GA were to vote no on this and you've already sent a Facebook event, what would you do?
        Direct Response - Kelvin: The Facebook event was set up by U of C students planning their own action in solidarity with Occupy Chicago. They have been discussing with Direct Action Committee about working with Occupy Chicago on this.
      • Sam: Rice helped privatize our military and enact many undemocratic military actions. Paulson was a former Goldman Sachs employee. He later became a member of the cabinet, largely responsible for bailout situation and many economic policies during the Bush administration. Rice is also a former employee of Chevron.
      • Kelvin: Inside the lecture event, students & university members will be doing an awesome action during the lecture. I think it's fine to be outside where the DAC was thinking of doing a political theater with puppets to highlight how Condoleezza Rice & Hank Paulson ruined our country. If we have the GA in Hyde Park, a lot of south side members who haven't been able to make it downtown will now get to experience our GA.
      • Britt: I am in favor of this action. This is exactly the kind of thing we should be doing; protesting vile people and the state in which they have left our economy and laid the groundwork for all the glorious things Obama is still doing to us. We need to counter these folks and the rest of the 1% they represent.
      • Street theater is a great idea. Having our GA on south side will show solidarity with south side citizens.
      • If we are all there making a ruckus, might as well get our business done at the same time.
      • Kim: I was at Occupy Bloomington-Normal earlier this week. These speakers are doing a tour.
      • Bloomington-Normal is doing a protest this week at the same event. I suggest coordinating with them to discuss security precautions. I have contacts if anyone is interested.
      • Ryan: Hank Paulson is a financial criminal. That is bad enough. Rice is a war criminal who is responsible for using the U.S. Armed Forces to kill people in the service of the 1%. If we do not stand for protesting that person then we don't stand for anything.
    • Moderator: We are supposed to have intermission right now per procedure to discuss this in small groups. However, stack discussion seems very straightforward.
      Calls for a Temp Check to bypass small group discussion for vote. Temp check positive. Vote taken.
    • VOTE PASSES: 0 Opposed, 1 Abstains.

 

  • Attendance with Amalgamated Transit Union at CTA Public Hearing, Thurs. Nov. 10th 5:30pm  VOTE PASSED (2 abstain)
    CTA Bus Driver: I refused to drive the police charter during Occupy Chicago's occupation attempt and was not fired for doing so. The ATU are 9000 workers being attacked by city administration. We are being told we do not work hard and there will be cuts to our compensation and as well as to public transit safety & convenience for all. On Thursday, there will be an action on the south side at Kennedy-King College, 740 W 63rd St, Nov 10, 6PM. We are asking people if they can come 5:30 or earlier. We will have speakers. We are asking for support and promotion of this action. Transit workers are part of the 99%. We would like to join other labor groups through the Labor Outreach meeting and work together. This will be voted on tomorrow. [proposal is read]
    • Stack:
      • Mike: I grew up in Chicago and went to CPS. Every time I have taken a history class I always heard about labor strikes as defining moments of history. It is extremely exciting to be standing on top of that right now. I think we should all support this.
      • Peter: Can we bring our drums to this meeting?
        Direct Response - CTA Bus Driver: As long as it is on public property, should be fine. We have brought drums in the past. I believe civil disobedience actions will be removed quite quickly. However, on public property drums are great.
      • Peter: What specific cuts are being made?
      • Javier: The CTA has perpetuated a lie for years in our budget process. They have not listened to the voice and needs of our communities in terms of transit. The budget hearings are not talking heads, they're bobble-heads. If you ask a question, it will not be answered by design and regulation. The budgets they have put forward are more of the same. It is time for the community of transit riders and those who benefit from transit to make their voice heard.
      • Kelvin: I have been to CTA and Metra board meetings. Twelve or so directors dictate how the whole meeting goes. They do allow a few people to publicly comment on the issues. I think when people go up who are from our communities and the ATU, we should use the human mic to support them. I really support this action as many transit workers are from south side of Chicago, a community that we have not effectively reached out to.
      • Are we to disrupt the meeting? Are there going to be speakers to the board that are not our people?
        Direct Response - We are only using human mic for our people. There are going to be speakers that are not ours.
        Direct Response - Kelvin: Those who get a card to speak, they should know to space their speech for human mic. They should also give a mic check before beginning.
        Direct Response - Bus Driver: If you come early at 5-5:30, they give the speaker cards to the first people who come. We will meet outside the school with our banners. We will stand up whenever one of our people gets up and gives a mic check and we will speak as one.
      • Lucky: I think there may be a problem if people who are not ours get up and do a mic check. I think that union members should give us a high or low sign to signify.
      • Trina: If they are from the civic chamber, they are not our people.
      • Lucky: This action takes place the afternoon of Thursday. I think we should go for an emergency vote so we have enough time to get the word out.
      • In response to concerns of confusion of who is on our side... We can hear what they are saying! We know if someone supports us or is against us! We are not babbling repetitive fools.
      • Dave: I think it would be cool, similar to the Scott Walker event, when someone says something we do not like, we stand up and drown that person out with a short prepared speech.
    • Moderator calls for a Temp Check in favor of an emergency vote due to timing. Positive check.
    • VOTE PASSES - 2 Abstain


GENERAL ANNOUNCEMENTS:

  • Two years ago we occupied Mayor Daley's office for the Mental Health Movement that successfully stopped closing 4 south side mental health clinics. Now we need to do it again. Mayor Emanuel is trying to balance his budget on the backs of some of the most marginalized people of our city. We need support for 2 critical actions. Tomorrow at 5:30 in front of City Hall on the LaSalle Street side. You will hear testimony from some of the thousands of patients that have heroically combated two administrations for their services.
  • Peter:  There is a proposed House Resolution. We need to get the word out about this and call our representatives. [view info here]
  • Sam: The police officers who have been watching us have been hassling people at HQ about keeping our supplies constantly mobile using Ordinance 10-28-070. No where in the ordinance does it actually use the word “mobile.” It says you are not allowed to store materials in a public space indefinitely. Move it back & forth and tell them there is not actual measurable language about how much movement qualifies as mobile. Also, we need more people between 3AM and 10AM to be at HQ, as this is when police hassle us most.
  • Mayor of Denver has asked Occupy Denver to elect a representative. OD elected a three year old border collie named Shelby. If corporations are people, then why not Shelby? She is leading a march this weekend in Denver and may be meeting with the mayor.
  • Max: Loyola Meeting 4PM tomorrow in the Centennial Student Forum. New organization CASH is most likely meeting at UIC. That is not set in stone. I recommend going on Facebook and looking up the group called Anti-Capitalist Coalition.
  • A group of professional journalists have started the Occupy Chicago Tribune. This stands in full solidarity with Occupy Chicago. We are working under a tight deadline to produce a paper copy in about two weeks. We are looking for people who have professional or academic experience in journalism to participate in helping us with this project. We are particularly looking people with graphic design, layout, & production experience. Please meet with me if interested.
  • PSA: It has come to my attention that there is someone among us who does not have a place to sleep tonight. I was wondering if we can take up a collection to get this person a place to sleep tonight. I will pass a hat.
  • This Friday is Veterans Day. The city is sponsoring a ceremony in Soldier Field. However, Iraq Veterans Against the War always meets at the Veterans Day Memorial at Wacker/Wabash. They consider themselves 99% and are very supportive of the Occupy movement. In fact, they are going to have speakers at the memorial at 11AM. At noon they are marching to Occupy Chicago's HQ. It would be great to see everyone there.
  • Trina: I believe we have an event with them that evening as well. Northwestern University will also be coming down by CTA bus to join us on the street that day.
  • Sam: I found that MoveOn.org that uses the language of the 99% to raise money for themselves. They gave the impression that the best way to help Occupy Wall Street is not to join or donate to your local occupation or organize in your community but to give money to Moveon.org. This is not the best way to contribute to Occupy. We need to prevent ourselves from being co-opted.
    Point of Clarification - Moveon.org also has a statement that says they are responsible for Occupy Together, Occupy Wall Street, and other Occupy movements. They state these organizations are sponsored by George Soros.
    Direct Response - How about we issue a statement saying these are not true?
  • Dawn: We once had a donations box attached to a bike rack at HQ. Last week, CPD made us take it down because it is not a bike. I talked to Joseph, a member of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers. He and his union are in deep support of Occupy Chicago. They have welded a donations box for us and this will be attached to a bicycle. I will bring this on Thursday.
  • Quick addition to House of Representatives Proposal: In a meeting, I asked for a moment of silence in honor of Scott Olsen. Representative Mulligan in opposition stood up against this stating the Occupy people marching are homeless with no where to go, have been organized online for 10 years, and are strange people. When her office was called and asked why Rep. Mulligan said this, her assistant stated she had “no idea.”
  • Keilah: Make sure everyone tweets, shares, and calls their Reps about getting the HR0610 House Resolution to be co-sponsored.
  • Paddy: 11/11/11 is a super healing day. There are indigenous people all coming to Illinois. I am taking a caravan in the morning at 10AM. Those who wish to go, we will pass through Bloomington-Normal. Follow me on twitter @paddyelectric.

GA adjourned.

Date: 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011 - 5:00pm

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