GA minutes March 16th 2012



Agenda Setting: We will do the following: Peoples library, March against the wars, Net neutrality votes (held off on Music fest discussion as we don’t have people to explain)


Comm announcements: Fitness Comm. –Yoga on Fridays at 6

-Secretariat- New process is taped on the back of the agenda board.


Calls for assistance:

David-Followup on discussion of what we we are doing well. Get together, create working groups to make some of those ideas active.

Tim-April fools idea, Moustache March.

Ted-New committee, ant-election committee. Create a real democracy. Meet at 5 on Saturday.

-Doug from Occupy Cleveland: Week before NATO will have big Occupy the Heart Fest rally, possibly start an occupation again. Spread the word.

Presentations: Peoples library: We should be against privatization in general. Libraries are a weak spot for mayor 1% as he has had to back off previous attempts.

Clarifications: Is 1% actively trying to privatize? Response – not directly yet, but this is suggested elsewhere-Rockford as an example. No evidence that Mayor is trying to do it yet. But the layoffs are having a big effect already. There are some outside non-profit workers doing work for CPL already.

It’s on a Thursday, at 10 am.

Temp check for ownership- positive. Also temp checked to let press comm know that there is a lot of support so they can get started.

March against the war:

Read from website.

Facilitator from Wednesday mentioned that there was a suggestion for an amendment to have the march be against all wars.

Apr 7th funding

-Read proposal: Expl. Breakfast done by local community organizations. See Chicago Spring website to see local actions. Teach ins and other stuff for 3 hours. Then feed everyone. Benton House donating kitchen space, others doing the cooking and serve.

Clarifications: Chicago Radical calendar has a similar web function-are we on that? No

-Cost break down? Food not bombs did the estimate, $500 gives us all snacks. $1,000 gives food for all. Doesn’t know.

-Biodegrable costs? Don’t know- FNB will try to be available for the vote.

Temp check to take this on.

-Lucas-likes. Doesn’t want the friendly amendment

-Ted agrees, take as it is because this other group put together well.

-Mark –against all war might impact on idea of revolution.

-Our NDAA statement included being against all wars.

-Agrees with George Orwell that pacifism is pro-fascist if you are faced with fascism.

Vote-10 for, 3 abstain, 0 against.

Peoples library stack:

-Cutting back on libraries is unacceptable.

Temp check: Ready to vote:

(Emergency announcement: Saturday received 3 boxes of t-shirts. Blank black shirts. Available for actions. At HQ last few days, getting good vibe. Been behind at work, needs to back off to get some balance.)

Apr 7th feast stack:

-Encourage people to bring own dishes- blast. Will work on phrasing before vote.

-$$ ~$8,000 on hand after we pay rent at end of month. $1,000 to feed a mass of people is great.

Proposal –discuss GA attendance (decided to do after gen announcements)

Gen Announcements: Social media not functioning well due to lack of people. Email to join.

Work place organizer training this weekend all day Sat and Sun. By IWW.

Apr 7th meeting 500 Sunday at 5 pm.

Been at occupation at 3811 s. Wabash. They are worrying about low numbers there being able to keep cops away.

Discussion about GA attendance.

-How many over last weekends? Low. Could be St. Pat’s day, the nice weather. Going back to horse should bring more.

-agree. Moving to the Horse will fix a lot of those.

-don’t think tonight is an indicator of usual attendance. Lots of our issues are “old news” ie bailouts foreclosures, wars. Don’t know if moving to Horse will fix it. OC needs to step up in big actions or it will make itself irrelevant

-agree. This has been building for a while. There is always something going on (piccolo, eviction action, OCC the Midwest) and that has a negative effect on GA. We need to push outreach at those events and actions. This cycle feeds on itself. Drop in attendance creates drop in enthusiasm.

-moving to Cermak created an extra barrier to new people. Being inside creates a lot of issues that befall NfP orgs. We should start GA at HQ and carry it to the Horse

-We should either cut the number of GA’s or establish a Principal GA’s.

-Some of the setbacks at other Occupy Movements has had a negative effect. We also have neighborhood Occupy movements. We should possibly try to consolidate the groups.

-A lot of people are engaged in different ways. We should definitely go back to occupying public space. Having a public area for people with grievances is a good thing. We should also be more confrontational if we want to stay relevant. We should move to a more confederated system to reflect different regions.

-Agree with that last point. We used to have seven GA’s, and cut down to four, thinking it would boost attendance. Moving into the office has created a lot of demoralizing drama. We just need to treat each other better

-We lose people due to how we run the GA’s; particularly over some contentious, personal issues. Kicking Mark D had to move three times –can’t imagine what it was like for a new person. Last 4 GA’s seemed like there was at least one main personal issue going on. Not doing community building here. Should consider getting rid of 7th floor. Consider making it harder to get something through so that actions get more attention. Maybe just figure out how to inspire people

-Weather will get people back at L &J. Especially after A7. Lose 7th floor, keep 5. Get a presence out there again. Don’t lose faith now. We are organic and unfunded. Nobody getting paid.

-Still someone at L&J. Don’t take personal offense when someone disagrees. Accept criticism. Need to be able to challenge each other. Lost some diversity of opinion and people are more hardcore in their opinions when we moved inside. Bunch of far left can’t speak for everyone.

-As newer member, late Jan/early Feb. Big focused action on Feb 15th was really exciting. Apr 7th may do that for us.

-Goes to L&J every Tuesday. Sees Jeff with three sandwhich board signs. A few others, asking for reinforcements. Some homeless people have “glommed on”- pushing him for donations. Not occupiers, just hanging there.

-@HQ on wed at 5pm. Alone for a while. Guy came up to speak to him. Student classical musician with good questions. “what have you done, what are you doing now, future plans” –Community outreach, get neighborhoods with us. Bill Maher attacked us last week. Get major actions, not just one house at a time, Big Ideas on the agenda. Get attention back. Multiple little marches, etc. don’t work.

-Internal issues of space have driven people away. Passive aggressive sign wars. Locks and keys burden people. Worried about assuming weather and L&J will get people. Weekly actions, performance based perhaps at L&J might work. Need a plan to show why people should go back there.


Sunday, March 18, 2012 - 3:30pm