People's Assemblies Network

Peoples Assemblies Workgroup at Occupy LSX

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The story so far:

1) David Harvey spoke at Occupy LSX about democracy and people’s assemblies on Nov 12. There is a video here http://occupylsx.org/?p=1119

and we are still in the process of retrieving the minutes from the GA that followed.

(2) Our subgroup prepared an initial statement on the state, sovereignty, real democracy and people’s assemblies and took it to the GA on 18 Nov. The statement is here ( and note how many ‘likes’ it got on FB at

http://occupylsx.org/?p=1197

) :

Following point 1* of the Occupy LSX Statement we propose the following insertion:

“What is needed is a democratic alternative to the political-state system. This alternative must be built by people’s assemblies across the country, to facilitate [a new constitution guaranteeing]:

(a) full social and political participation
(b) a new and popular democratic sovereignty
(c) a common, structured political economy that delivers social equality and well-being for all”

It is proposed this insertion be linked to a call for the formation of people’s assemblies in neighbourhoods, workplaces and education establishments across the country, and for a day of action in support.

* 1. The current system is unsustainable. It is undemocratic and unjust. We need alternatives; this is where we work towards them.

(3) It was agreed at the GA of18th November ( Minutes:

http://occupylsx.org/?p=1279

) that we should re-develop the draft statement and bring it to the next GA on Democracy. The next draft statement is set out below and was considered at the GA on Monday 28th November.

Proposal on Real Democracy and People’s Assemblies

Following point 1* of the Occupy LSX Statement we propose the following insertion [or, alternatively as a standalone text]:

“The crisis of the system opens the way for all of us to be co-creators of our future, not its victims. What is needed is a truly democratic alternative to a parliamentary system that has been compromised by corporate and financial interests. Therefore, in order to facilitate the transition to real democracy and the liberation of the disenfranchised majority, we call for the formation of people’s assemblies in neighbourhoods, workplaces and education establishments across the country, assemblies where no one will be excluded, and where the voice and sovereignty of the people will be expressed. And we call for a day of action** in support.”

* 1. The current system is unsustainable. It is undemocratic and unjust. We need alternatives; this is where we work towards them.

** A river march on 14th January to St Mary’s Church / Putney, scene of the famous 1647 constitution debates is being proposed.

(4) The good news from the 28th Nov GA is that an event at Putney on 14th January was supported fully, however the statement  got objected to on lots of grounds. We now have a very short time to prepare for the next Democracy GA on Saturday 3rd Dec.

Here are the Minutes from the 28th Nov:

http://occupylsx.org/?p=1600

We are working on next steps at the public Occupy London Forum, here: http://occupylondon.info/viewtopic.php?f=47&t=112&sid=bae541918885950f9ec8812da422c613

Come join us!

2 Comments

  1. My notes from a workshop at St Paul’s on November 17 are here http://www.facebook.com/groups/aworldtowininfo/doc/10150400673995690/

  2. I just wanted to share my understanding of the Occupy movement followed by a couple of, hopefully, useful insight.

    Our elected government should know that while appearing to empower the government, multi-national corporations are on a long-term drive to take control of state finances and state affairs. Symptoms of their cancerous growth include corporate lobbying, appointment of technocrats, privatisation of public utilities and services, creation of costly wars for securing control of foreign natural resources. Last but not least the expensive bail-out of banks.

    The government should recognise the tumour has already rendered the state impotent as is visible for all to see by its inability to take decisive action against media and corporate corruption and tax evasions.

    Internationally, Occupy protesters are desperately attempting to signal the growth of this painful condition but our confused government is ignorantly reacting by coordinating repression through the imposition of debt and austerity measures on the masses, increasing security measures and controls, ordering military police interventions against democratic civilian protests, dispossessions, eroding employment, welfare and civil rights and by controlling opinion via mas media and PR campaigns.

    The government should learn from the mistakes of Egypt that greater repression leads to public outrage and uprise. When all hope is lost, the people no longer fear or care.

    The government should recognise its attempts to isolate and weaken Occupy have resulted in greater sympathy and support for the protesters worldwide.

    The government should recognise that Occupy is not the enemy. Occupy seeks to work with the government in addressing a condition that has become so critical it can and should no longer be ignored.

    ===============

    Part of bringing corporate power back under control is the need for people to understand the part they play in empowering corporate giants everytime they participate in market research and opinion polls, write product reviews, use credit, debit and store cards, sign up to social networks and media services. While they have devised sophisticated means to collate and analyse information about us and endoctrinate us, corporate giants operate in the tightest secrecy. Even their employees have limited access to what goes on inside the higher ranks and are prevented from divulging the little they know. B.Manning and J.Lasange are both paying the price of disturbing corporate and state secrecy. By volunteering information about ourselves we disempower ourselves and empower them to remain one step ahead of us. The more we withhold our information and money, the weaker they will become.

    People also need to become expert at reading through the propaganda rhethoric (PR) of corporations and the state. For example the use of the term ‘credit crunch’ for ‘recession’, ‘hybrid’ for ‘genetically modified’. In corporate universe, ‘corporate social responsibility’ means strategy to access political power and public funds. Benefits to the public are incidental by-products or a means to an end. The more we probe and demand answers, the more diffcult it will be for corporate giants and governments to maintain secrecy and PR language. The more defiant we become, the more angry and repressive they become. Long live Occupy!

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