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Happy Birthday Occupy Houston!

Tomorrow, October 6th, is Occupy Houston’s first birthday. We’re having a party and you’re invited. We’d love to have you here all day, but feel free to drop in for a few minutes or a few hours. Fun, educational, and family friendly. :)

Birthday Party Schedule:

9a – 10a Take Hermann Square at City Hall (table set up, sign making, sidewalk chalk, music, drums, etc)

10a – 11a The People’s Brunch

Field Trip(s): 11a – 1:30p Downtown Tour de 1% (routes to be announced)

12p Noon Rally & Announcements at the Reflection Pond

1:30p – 2p Open Progressive Stack for Additional Teach-Ins (sign up for teach-ins & discussions)

2p – 6p Expected Teach-Ins & Discussions

  • Visit to Greece Report-back/Discussion
  • Creative Non-Violence Direct Action
  • National Gathering Visioning Results Discussion
  • Feeding Ordinance Discussion (with Food Not Bombs)
  • No Tar Sands Discussion (with TarSandsBlockade Houston)
  • What is Consensus/Radical Discussion (with ESSC)
  • Importance of Independent Media (by Houston Indy Media)
  • The Occupy Movement and the Necessity of Socialism (by Marxist Reading Group)

Note: Teach-Ins & Discussions may be happening simultaneously

Field Trip: 3p – 8p Houston Zine Fest, 3801 Polk St (free admission)

6p Birthday GA

7p The People’s Dinner

7p – 9p Entertainment including music, art, reflection, soap box (replacing GA opinion section)

9p Public Concert featuring The Free Radicals

10:30p Take Downtown March

***Remember to bring sleeping gear for over night occupation!! (Sleeping bags, cheap tents, cardboard, blanket, pillows, bedrolls, etc)

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Food Sharing News

Events Tonight!

Unfortunately, this conflicts with our GA at 7, in front of the public library. But for those who may not be able to make GA anyway, I thought I would share:

The Peace Forum at First Unitarian Church on Fannin will present a program and power point presentation from the local Food Not Bombs group on Wednesday, April 11 at 7:30 pm. The focus will be on the recent food ordinance, and what supporters can do to get a proposal on the ballot for the next election. There will be a question and answer session and lots of discussion. Bring your friends and come for an exciting, challenging evening!

5200 Fannin
3rd floor

refreshments served at 7:15!

News Coverage

There’s been quite a bit of news coverage, but I wanted to highlight this article by OH’s Shere Dore. Go Shere! :)

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Busy Night Tonight (April 4th, 2012)

Join Us Tonight!

  • 7:00 PM: General Assembly of Occupy Houston
  • 8:15 PM: Emergency Meeting of the Keep Houston Sharing Free Coalition

In Memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. “We believe the highest patriotism demands the ending of the war and the opening of a bloodless war to final victory over racism and poverty.cite

Today is the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s Assassination. Learn more about the assassination on wikipedia. It is impossible to overestimate the influence this great man has had on America.

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April Fools!

April Fools! As you may have noticed, yesterday our page redirected to Rick Perry’s site. We wish to reassure anyone who was confused that this was just an April Fools Day joke. :)

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POC educational event

The persons of color workgroup would like to invite and encourage people to attend this educational event on May 23

http://www.stcl.edu/library/1917riot/program.html

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UH Students Call on Campus, Community to Support March 1 Student Walkout

UH Students Call on Campus, Community to Support March 1 Student Walkout
Opposes Budget Cuts and Layoffs, Supports Widespread Overhaul of Education System

WHO: UH Students and Graduates
WHAT: Press Conference for March 1 Student Walkout
WHEN: 2:00 PM Today, Feb 29th
WHERE: UC Student Center, UH Campus

Houston, TX – Today, University of Houston students are calling on Houston’s K-12 and college students, faculty and staff to take part in tomorrow’s nationwide student walkout in protest of increasing corporatization of education.

Student organizer Jamin Stocker said the event is also in support of finding alternative means to address issues. “Education today is less about learning, and more about being a cog in a broken machine. Maybe we need to scrap the machine altogether.”

“I’m walking out because I can’t afford new car’s worth of student debt in exchange for a degree,” UH Chinese Major Kelsey Taylor said. “If knowledge is power, education shouldn’t be so expensive.”

At 12 PM on Thursday, March 1, students plan to walk out and meet at the UC student center, where students will rally for a democratic, corporate-free education system.

“Education has become a capitalist industry that rewards executives with high salaries and ridiculous benefit packages, forcing struggling students to foot the bill.” said UH Theatre Major Caleb Travis.

“If our government funded schools like it funds the military, none of these issues would exist.” As college students are becoming increasingly burdened by a student debt bubble that’s risen above $1 trillion as of 2011, UH Law Graduate Sobie Malik is struggling to pay $150,000 in accumulated student debt.

“I’m glad I have a law job, because I pay more on my student loans than I do in rent.” said Malik, “Some of my other fellow grads weren’t as lucky. Some very gifted, highly-educated friends of mine are still looking. Our so-called ‘leaders’ should talk about jobs, not cuts.”

The walkout is part of a larger national day of action called by Occupy Education. Participating student groups include the Rice Progressives, UH Students for a Democratic Society, TSU Urban Academic Village, as well as students on 64 different campuses across the United States.

For more information, please visit: http://occupyed.org

“Follow” at http://twitter.com/UofOccupy “Like” at www.facebook.com/m1walkout

Contacts
Sobie MALIK
srmalik3@gmail.com 832-340-1794
(law student c/o 2008)

Kelsey TAYLOR
washi1a4@mymail.tcc.fl.edu 832-588-5871

Jamin STOCKER
march1walkout@gmail.com 706-267-0186

Caleb TRAVIS
caleb.travis@yahoo.com 832-450-9416

(note: original message reformatted and parts moved around for better presentation in this format but content was not significantly altered)

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Community Outreach Minutes – Jan 17 2012

Community Outreach Minutes

I dont have an exact date, but this meeting took place in January, on or shortly before the 18th. [the Meeting was Jan 17 2012, & scribed by Amy Price. EDIT/KR]

Lief was contacted directly by a man facing eviction, will forward to group
Remington is well versed in foreclosure law, can advise others
Evan is a real estate agent with extensive knowledge in real estate law
Marilee attended a squatting workshop
Michael has attended a couple of foreclosure defenses: some folks outside on steps, some holding “vigil”

Possibilities: help persuade banks to renegotiate loans
moving families into houses that are vacant
have online: if you’re facing foreclosure, please contact…
should have disclaimer about our participation to give to participants
Remington offered to contact an expert he knows
Suggestion that we focus on stalling foreclosures rather than re-occupying
Suggestion that we get on national conference calls re this subject
Occupyourhomes.com or .org for ideas
Interrupting home auctions for press coverage
Occupying homes take 10+ bodies: sleep inside and outside, sometimes to CD for press value, sometimes to thwart particular actions (move in somebody right after they get thrown out)
BoA has established a phone line for people resisting foreclosures. One tactic is to pretend to be media and claim that there are people occupying homes. 800-796-8448. Use names OF boa EMPLOYEES..
Remington in contact with good jobs for cooperation.
Leif will forward email from foreclosed individual
Evan will forward email re bank hotline
Need to network in the community
Can do lock clipping (Capitalism, Not a Love Story)
Austin will give us contact info for some folks at Occupy Minneapolis who are being really successful at this
Can set up dummy accts for paying bills
Chris will talk to OM folks, report back
Occupy Atlanta is 24-7 occupying forclosed homes but not their original park
Craigslist ad to look for foreclosure victims
Idea for mobile occupy: occupy a different park once per month during the day. Also churches, maybe use tent as symbol, other conversation starter like gas mask or something else, outreaching at service works
Next meeting we will set a strategy, need strategy in place before contacting potential clients
Will send all info to Outreach, Mobile-Occupy, and Leif
Next meeting: 5:30 this Sat, covered part of City Hall Annex

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evening GA 19 Jan 2012 Minutes

Tentative Minutes
** note: these are not proofread or corrected yet **

GA minutes 19 Jan 2012

Workgroup report backs

Joe – public comment 9:30 yesterday. Ray Hill spoke, had a lot of interaction. topic: police bullying. Remmington Ellesse spoke, and mayor left for the 3rd time in a row that remmington spoke. mr. cook spoke about budget. joe spoke about spanish company getting contract that violates the buy american act. mayor is in DC at conference sponsored by 1%. don’t forget the commissioners court. go speak. Trey: how to find agenda? Joe: google “harris county commissioners court agenda”

Amy – outreach: occupy the courts. 3 breakout groups for fridays. on sat, jamming doing food. alice doing kids stuff.

johnathon: logistics – freedmans town separated out into their own occupy.

delbert – POC – organizing with churches in freedmans town. met with 4 churches. mt. horror, mt carmel, st james, macedona. the purpose is for them to work more cohesively with freedmans town project and OH. I’ll be attending church and meeting with the pastors. 10AM sunday. anyone is welcome to go.

—-

announce

delbert – yesterday court case. person aquitted of a jaywalking charge. second trial. judge wanted to make sure he was locked away for jaywalking. a few of us showed up at the trial and we left an impression with the judge and court. threatened with contempt of court. guy was aquitted, because the police had lied about the charges. tomorrow there will be a press conference about the injustice in the district attorneys office. 8315 live oak, 11AM. anyone from occupy is encouraged to come and speak.

amy: reported contacted her about occupy and churches. can I give you as a point of contact? delbert: sure. BFSCR refered her to webpage

Trey – myself and anthony talked about starting higher education outreach group. discussed having an open forum where college students (and anyone, but mostly college students) to come and share what they think, specially about college. has not yet solicited or announced anything before now. would like help making a flyer.

also, Trey needs a ride to the panel discussion friday

Nick – I was over at reoccupy house and their outside activities are shutting down so they may be coming back to the park

Joe – 1401 andrews was sighted by the city of houston (yellow tagged) last week and was told that they have till the 25th of Jan to rectify the situation
what’s a yellow tag?
you are in danger of getting a fine for some sort of illegal activity. it was a code issue. they said it was an illegal campsite. … there’s no such thing as an illegal campsite in houston. going to speak out against it in city council.

amy – lisa pithian will be coming into town on 4th of febuary. runs website organizing for power. works with occupy wall street. she’ll put on an all day workshop. still in the works, no topic list yet.

Ben
- low turnout at the consulate due to kelsie sick and ben going directly from work. gave out 6 occupy newspapers, got into an argument with a worker at the consulate, and the same old guy in a red truck flipping him off 3 weeks in a row.
- Bren and susan will do another non-violent communication center workshop. please get with ben after GA if you’re interested.

——
Proposals

Amy: started an online petition to ask city council to pass a resolution to end the ideas of corp personhood and money is speech.
Q (Trey): who created it?
A (Amy): I did. go to change.org and anyone can do it. there is a nationwide movement doing this. change.org themselves might promote it.
Johnathan: can you tell us about change.org?
Amy: not really.
PASSED

Tyler: Make the block a commitment. if you block, and it passes anyway, you leave. they’re votes are no longer counted.
Ben POI: would you consider it good enough to go through and publicize people who have blocked in the past
No, not retroactive. wants to clear up the problem / tyranny of one person.
clarify: can you say when this has happened?
tyler: well, I don’t want to punish new people.
john: we now need a chain. so it’s not a tyranny of one, it’s a tyranny of two
ben: shot down the proposal for the vetting.
nick: we need to not have folks leave.
call for more time failed.

PoP Ben: we have pending propsals

John: passed one GA. is a loosening of proposal rules. workgroups can do proposals any day of the week. Lift the 2 day constraint.
passed second

I propose that individual proposals have no more constraints put on them (like the two consecutive GAs). because we don’t have daily GAs anymore. the last quorum we had was more than 48 hours ago.
Trey: opposed wording. said he would prefer that it be stated that the previous restrictions were being lifted. John accepted rewording.
Amy: if we had fewer of them, would we get more attendance?
Ben: wanted to say that there was a chain block previously, even though those folks weren’t here.
John: unless it’s an immediate proposal, we have a 24 hour waiting period.
PASSED

Restate: Decide to officially form a physical occupation vigil group comprised of committed members to participate in & affirm the symbolic importance of maintaining the physical occupation
Proposal Passes, Pending next GA Passed.

Capitol- Livestream be used to allow people online to participate in GA
PoI: 30 second delay on livestream will affect calling for consensus
Proposal Passes, Pending next GA
Friendly amendment Amy: allow those who can’t participate by livestream to send proxies
Benjamin blocked: I need details of a proxy system detailed before allowing it.
not withdrawn.
block upheld on amendment.
original proposal passes

Jamin: we require our official livestreamer to participate in GA. discussion about what official livestream was, if we need a team and/or how to do it. jamin just really wants the person doing the livestream to participate. john was saying that it wasn’t a single person, it was the web team that was responsible for web team.
amended: Per livestream proposal, we request that web have someone who’s livestreaming also be actively participating in the GA and have the person livestreaming and the virtual participants noted in the minutes. PASSES

John: I propose that anyone can livestream. however, those non-sanctioned livestreamers not be able to take consensus votes from those livestreams. PASSED

——-
opinions

Trey: it’s good to have ian back. thank you to the peacekeepers. there was something a few nights ago that got ppl upset – if you don’t know, don’t ask. ask for tmp check for org a meeting kinda like what jenny did but to just all get together and talk about workgroups, what ones we have, and allow folks to have enough time to have time to be here.

discussion about frequency of GAs and attendance.

Joe: to finish the info on the yellow tag. research shows no actual code exists. talks of what to do about it.
Trey wants to send them a bill for the cost of having ticketed us.
SOPA+PIPA: mike honda (US congressman) blacked his website. he comes to houston often, and spent his childhood in an internment camp
in San Diego, CA: mayor gave state of city address and got mic checked. he’s trying to get those guys charged with federal conspiracy charges. explanation of conspiracy charges.

Nick: been coming here more than 90 days now. ga was every day, and you could count on it. I’ve tried to get ppl to tell me when it’s happening, and it was hard. it’s important to have it every day so we can get together today at 7PM. changing the schedule caused it go downhill.

John: served an eviction notice to city hall and/or tranquility park

Amy: there’s no way to know why GA’s are so poorly attended. but we could be doing more – like actions twice a week.

Mike (Troll): lets do this every day. all wear white. the left, all wear black. sit by color. have the kids talk to us. I miss my daughter.

Ben: spoke on a GA schedules and consensus and how we’ve not really had it and how this has helped reveal rifts that were existing. asked the reach team to go back through and find when ppl actually showed up. 90% supermajority is not the same type of thing as consensus -x. got more time. liked trey’s idea. amy: give lead time. ben: agrees. need to do more education about consensus; it’s not voting with silly rules. john: what’s schedule? current schedule: 7PM every night, 11AM every day. nick: occupation is every day, GA should be too

Joe: occupying a foreclosed home. I’m gonna do it and report back on it. gonna be a little non-transparent about it the first few weeks to avoid “party at joes house”. normally a house gets neglected after a foreclosure for a little over a year. if you’re occupying a house and pay off neglected property houses, you have a really good shot at getting the deed. once you’ve occupied for a while, it’s much harder to get evicted, takes 90ish days and cost money.

moderator note: I missed GAs and yawl.

Maria: needs to talk to someone who will be here tmw at 2PM who has a cell phone. wants to use it to find out if there’s gonna be a courthouse protest or not.

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