We Can Occupy

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Minutes / Notes (first draft) – 2012 Jan. 8 – Occupy Needham

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FIRST DRAFT – ROUGH NOTES from tonight’s meeting – almost “live” notes
Will try to clean it up and re-post soon, but for now…
2012 jan 8
Eileen, Julie, Mike / Framingham, Ross, John K., Bill O., Laura B (Framingham), Ellen Fine, Stacie, Eileen K (Newton), Harmony, Clark, Olly, Artie, LauraREVIEW TOPICS THAT CAME IN (SUGGESTED) AND PROPOSED AGENDA
  • TOPICS FOR AGENDA (feedback from RSVP ppl)
    • Corporate personhood and pesticides, today in NH (Ellen fine)
    • Employment and wages (Bill Okerman)
    • How to spread the message and be effective (Olly)
    • Start getting down to concrete plans / details on some of our plans (Harmony)
    • GA at First Unitarian / Fliers
    • Media Stuff (Ross )
    • GA at Needham Town Hall
    • 3 Strikes Legislation
    • Website/internet
    • Boston Update
    • Occupy Wall St is coming to town Jan 27 – Feb 5 – looking for places to stay
  • Proposed Agenda:
    • Review and updates from around the room. Meetings people have been to… calendar events coming up?
      • Ross
        • Occupy Natick update: organizing after the Bost model… we are operating more like a working gp. Mike was there. Whatever works.
        • Facilitation, approach to consensus bldg. What happens with “takeovers”?
        • 3 strikes issues – we need more information, but much discontent with the bill was expressed.
        • Roxbury meetings
        • Appts with Legislators
        • Joint Committee/Coalition to carry thru legislator meetings – Ridgely (get Ross her information)
        • Citz United bill (State legislation): Jamie E + Corey atkins
        • 60 occupy towns
      • Ellen – planning in Boston
        • John Kirk / Elen: rpeort: NH Primary Occupation – mini-GA with 50 or so people. Singing, sharing experiences, marching.
        • There will be actions Monday and Tuesday around the primaries.
          • Monday: Hudson in the AM,
        • “Death of the American Dream” demonstration went well 🙂
        • Turnout for republican supporters was low for a NH primary.
        • There are tents and banners in Veterans Park still.
      • Artie, Eileen Newton meeting (11:30 – 1:00 PM)
        • They want to get a resolution to Newton about citzns United
        • Having petition/signatures behind Alderman is helpful
        • They are debating which structure to use for their meetings. They’re currently rotating facilitators for meetings.
        • They’re getting good response on their Sat AM visibilities
        • HHW: QUESTION: what “added value” can these visibilities do? SIgnign people up? Getting signatures on a petition? Emails for the mailing list?
          • yup.
      • Artie: encuentro 5 interOccupy meeting:
        • Suburban occupy caucus of sorts, JP called it. 3-5/6pm
        • 18 towns represented; higher % of Boston JP groups than suburb groups. Newton, Needham, Natick, Salem,Boston area most rep’d
        • Jan 28: another planning meeting; GA Feb 8
        • Artie’s Q: What is this GA on Feb 8? .
          • AC not clear why
        • Is it about having a big Eastern MA GA?
          • Ellen: POI: concerns in Boston about “who are these people”
          • It would be nice to have a MA sense of things
        • There was some gap of understanding of the process among participants.
        • Eileen: I’d like to see what peoples comfort level with using the consensus process is and how it might be amended.
        • Julie: Is there a video that explains the consensus process?
        • Eileen: nametags, facilitation overview for newcomers
        • Clark: people who don’t need/want to be part of long meetings and facilitation; people who want action… moving something
          • obsession aboutt process and meetings can sap peoples’ will to be involved with the movement.
        • Stacie: Ridgely’s 6-8 issues…? Here’s what’s in H’s notes from last time:
  • “The Ideas Group”: what is the issue that brought you to Occupy.  There are 6-7 issues — will start disc groups, or maybe a conference in February.
    • National Occupy summit end of March
        • Ross: Hand signs: stylistic elements can alienate.
          • Ellen “the big divide” – Reformist vs radical.
        • Olly: if you want to make a big diffc, you need to reach a lot of people
          • AC: not enuf ppl at the mtg there were interested in opening up the choir
        • Julie: bridge between radicals and reformists would be helpful
        • Mike: the limits of a “list of demands” – Occupy as a platform not a campaign.
        • Clark: the role of the state has to be addressed, so both/and is necessary
      • Suburban general assembly
        • GA in Needham? Ellen?
          • 4 GAs/week in Boston: 1 GA /week elsewhere–needham, quincy, lowell,…
          • Framed as an Occupy Boston GA in Needham? Or an “Occupy Massachusetts” thing in Needham
      • Eileen – event updates for Newton event
        • Change “SUburbs” to “Burbs”?
        • Would like people to come in w a Proposal so its like a real GA (her church will bring up 25% military budget cut)
      • Ellen on more stuff?
      • Three Strikes:
        • We nd to get updates on where it is/where it’s; at (H talk to JE)
    • Do 10 minutes on each of the above… come up with focused questions for these issues?
    • Bill Okerman: Economy and Wages:
      • documents: Wage Theft relates directly to 99%; handout: House Bill 4663/Romney/Sept 7 2006
      • Book passed around: Wage Theft in America, Kim Bobo
      • Gov Romney – pocket veto – unsigned 4663
      • Bill’s done the excruciating research/detail: if real conservatives knew about this, they’d flip
      • Interfaith Worker Justice
      • Can we name-and-shame employers who engage in this?
      • Free School Univ may want to do a teach-in about this.
      • Bill will connect with John Kirk and Laura and try to get this info out to OB.
    • Ellen Fine / Pesticide
      • Earth Day occupy the planet
      • This is in conjunction with Env., artists, and Spiritual WGs
      • Warrant Article to phase out use of Pesticides on pub props.bythe town
        • (Has she caucused with JB Royal and Susan Abbott and Debbie Schmill(yes)??) Sounds like yes (Berms). caucusing w/ Green Needham
        • John’s Susan K might be interested. Field of Dreams.
      • Wellesley uses organic pest management – they are a model.
      • Ideas for marketing this idea: Make it about children. Make it about GMOs. Make it about mega-corps. Tie it into health care issues.
      • This may be a 2-year campaign.
    • Stacie S: Will announce the Needham COmmunity Farm Dinner next
    • Olly: Getting the message out: we are getting smaler and smaller when we should be getting better (99%);  how to best get message out
      • Briefly
      • Clark: iit’s the organizing around –lawns and wages– action is
    • Clark: visibility
      • John Clark and Artie are visibility people
      • Get a visibility around PETITIONS of town meeting warrants
      • Jan 28?
        • Bonfire?
  • Jan 20/21 Citz Unitd Working Group
    • http://wiki.occupyboston.org/wiki/Citizens_United_to_End_Political_Bribery_(Working_Group)
    • Friday Jan 20 4-8 TBD location – unsure about permit situation
      • Rally/summit, speakers, panel discussion, mostly open discussions among attendees
      • (State CItz U bill) 772 resolution
      • Resolutions in towns
      • Media strategies to cover the issue
      • Consumer strats; orgz w/ local bizs
      • Jamie Eldridge, John Bonafaz, John __, COrey Atkins,
      • Lobbying training by Grace Ross w role play
      • move to amend rally 1202 friday 20th
    • Signature collection going on for Needham-specific Move to Amend prop

TABLED/not covered:

    • Review working groups, — do we want to break into groups here?


  • TEACH INs: Tom, Claire, Marty, Clark, John, Eileen
    • Brainstorm relationships/possibilities for teach-ins, bring together people, make calls, arrangements.etc.
  • LEGISLATIVE / ELECTORAL: Tom, Harmony, Claire, Julie (esp Corporate Personhood)
    • Legislative
      • MA anti CItz U bill advocacy
        • Need a legislative tracker:  Stacie?
          • (via PM)
        • Map out a timeline of coordinated grassroots advocacy, get OccBurbs membership on board with our work (so that they will/can pitch in when the time is right)
      • Getting anti corporate personhood on Town Meeting warrant:
        • Needham
        • Can we get a VOLUNTEER to call town hall/clerk of these towns/check websites and get the information on these towns? (Where we have membership?):
          • Newton (David K, Susan D and Eileen K)
          • Natick (Betsy B is on it)
          • Winchester (Julie!)
          • Westwood (Claire and Stephen)
      • Getting non binding ballot question on our spring ballots?
        • Call town clerks?
        • Needham election day: ___
    • Electoral
      • Getting anti corporate personhood people into DTC
        • That means going to meetings…
      • Getting anti corporate personhood people into Town Meeting (and Board of Selectmen?)
        • Feb 14 = incumbents deadline to reflie
        • Feb 22 = new candidate’s deadlien to file signatures:
        • Candidates for Town Office must obtain at least 50 valid signatures of registered voters town wide and new Town Meeting Member candidates must obtain at least 10 valid signatures of registered voters in their precinct. The last day to file nomination papers with the Board of Registrars is Tuesday, February 22, 2012. Incumbent Town Meeting Members must return the written acceptance form (which they will receive in the mail) to the Town Clerk’s Office by Tuesday, February 14th. PLEASE NOTE THAT WITH THE COMPLETION OF THE FEDERAL CENSUS REDISTRICTING, ALL TOWN MEETING MEMBERS MUST RUN FOR ELECTION THIS YEAR. THOSE WITH THE TOP THIRD VOTES WILL RECEIVE THE THREE YEAR TERM; THOSE WITH THE SECOND THIRD VOTES WILL RECEIVE THE TWO-YEAR TERM; AND THOSE WITH THE LAST THIRD VOTES WILL RECEIVE THE ONE-YEAR TERM.
        • The following slate of offices will be on the April ballot: One Moderator for One Year; Two Selectmen for Three Years; One Assessor for Three Years; Two Members of School Committee for Three Years; One Trustee of Memorial Park (trustee of soldiers’ memorials – veteran) for Three Years; One Trustee of Memorial Park (trustee of soldiers’ memorials – non-veteran) for Three Years; Two Trustees of Needham Public Library for Three Years; One Member of Board of Health for Three Years; One Member of Planning Board for Five Years; One Commissioner of Trust Funds for Three Years; Two Members of Park and Recreation Commission for Three Years.
  • OUTREACH: Eileen, Claire, Julie (religious outreach ON the corporate personhood issue)
    • Drill down on some names and a plan for follow up:
  • PR / MEDIA:  Jan G., Ross (press releases, disseminate info)
  • BALLOT INITIATIVES IN TOWNS WITH SPRING ELECTIONS (Colbert’s “Is a corporation a person?” or “Is a person a person?”):  John Kirk, Stacie, Harmony, Artie, Julie
    • Call to Teddy Eaton re: what the options are locally? (and ask who else to call re: options statewide for September or November ballot?)
    • Call Jerry or Moe re: their opinions on what to do?
    • Outreach?
    • The message?
    • Tactics:  visibilities? comunications?
    • Organizing?

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