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At the time of this writing, there is a diary up on Daily Kos which purports to use the consensus model to make a statement about what agenda Occupy Wall Street should adopt.

In a way, You right now are a part of Occupy if you want to be.  You are are effectively a part of Occupy Daily Kos.

We're here and we plan to stay.  Nobodies making us leave.  Well, noboby except maybe Markos. That's up to him.

Ok, now that we're here - what are we going to do,eh?

Well, how about we try and tackle some of those "Solutions" our brother and sister Occupy's are having so many problems with?

While this is a laudable intent, and having spent considerable time at Occupy Portland from its inception, I am deeply appreciative of anyone who wants to support OWS, it is unfortunately seriously flawed before it even begins.

Here is why:

(continued below)

The DKos forum does not qualify as a proper venue to give voice to Occupy Wall Street.

The OWS movement is based on a leaderless consensus model. This is the basis of decision making. When there are leaders, there is no horizontality, no real equality in participation. It isn't possible to have free discussion on a blog when speech is moderated autonomously by one person. Daily Kos is an autocracy.  All it takes is one act by moderators to shut the whole thing down with just one intrusion on one participant. The moderators on the site are not trained movement facilitators, nor is their authority in harmony with the consensus process. And the hide rate feature does not require 90% participation and agreement to eliminate comments that may be worthy. Furthermore, since membership in DKos is controlled, with some members having more privilege than others, some members autocratically banned, while those the administration "likes" not banned, the consensus process is already denied before we even begin, because the potential members can't participate at will. This creates a pre-selected membership. Thus, this isn't an "occupied" space. DKos, it's habitués and diarists, can never issue any statement that will be credible to anyone in the movement under such restrictions.

This is one of the reasons the OWS movement goes to PUBLIC parks: Presumably there is no "Admin" there to zap anyone for breaking HIS rules, and thus, the GA's can't be controlled and influenced.

In addition, the person or persons who are initiating the consensus process are self appointed, and have not called for agreement in regards to who would facilitate, nor for a rotation of facilitators, as does the OWS model. Thus, it seems we already have a leader of sorts. This won't work. If we want to do this right, we need a different forum, a GA initial meeting to decide how to go forward, discussion of ground rules.

If any of the people beginning this process at Daily Kos were at an actual GA in a real public space in a real town, all that I am raising here as concerns WOULD certainly be voiced, and voiced rather persistently and loudly. This would not be acceptable at an authentic GA.

Thus, this is not representative of Occupy Wall Street, it's just a bunch of people on a blog on a Sunday trying to decide issues without actually going to an Occupy movement to be part of the protests. If you want to make up an agenda, that's lovely, but it is only an exercise, not the authentic Occupy movement.

When people get out of their chairs and go to these events, and spend time in the rain and the cold, they become part of the movement. It's assumed they actually WANT to occupy Wall Street. It's assumed they accept the consensus process, without leaders. It's assumed there is no person observing who controls admittance. It's assumed they want economic equality. It's assumed they think the system is sufficiently broken to warrant civil disobedience.

This is the only way to be a part of the movement. On a blog like this, it is too easy for agent provocateurs and political hacks to enter into debate to cause havoc and discord.

No authentic Occupy GA will recognize any of this as representative of the movement.

People might respond to my concerns by saying this is benign, that site administration won't interfere, that there is nothing so controversial in the discussion of agenda that would cause the administration to object enough to censure opinion, but I would strongly disagree.  The occupy movement is not supportive of the status  quo, business as usual approach. If they were, they wouldn't be out in the streets engaging in civil disobedience. All it takes to corrupt the consensus process is having one person fear voicing an opinion that doesn't abide by DKos site rules of supporting the Democratic Party and the election of more and better Democrats.

If even one participant fears banning or losing privileges or "mojo" because he or she holds an opinion in conflict with site rules, then the consensus process is corrupted, and any decisions made are not truly representative of consensus. In fact, if the consensus  process goes relatively smoothly on this site, with no incidences of moderation, that in itself could be symptomatic of suppression, because any of us who have spent sufficient time at Occupy General assemblies and events knows the occupy movement always has strong opinions expressed, and there is often heated debate before consensus is achieved. Someone is bound to offend site rules, and end up being censured.

The Occupy movement is not an arm of the Democratic Party. Daily Kos, with its rules, essentially is Democratic Party territory. Thus, this entire attempt to discuss OWS goals and agendas on Daily Kos, surrounded by party loyalists,  is flawed.

On Daily Kos, there is no "civil disobedience" allowed without threat of removal. When important voices are removed, there is no real consensus, but rather, a manufacture of consensus.

10:44 PM PT: Many people have misunderstood the intent of this diary. I am not trying to stifle speech, but rather point out that speech on this site is controlled by site rules and goals, and thus any attempt to obtain consensus, as adopted by the OWS movement, will be inherently flawed.

I encourage people to write whatever they like about OWS, including its agenda, but let's not deceive ourselves in believing that real consensus can be obtained on DKos, considering the nature of the site.


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Comment Preferences

  •  I agree. completely different models. (16+ / 0-)

    you and me never had that "this is a Dem site" fight I've had with so many here lol?  I had to crack a smile at your last paragraph, thinking maybe we had.

    This comment is dedicated to my mellow Adept2U and his Uncle Marcus

    by mallyroyal on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 04:04:11 PM PST

  •  completely agree. nt (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ZhenRen, gooderservice, Simian, frandor55

    I was once a treehouse, I lived in a cake, but I never saw the way the orange slayed the rake... The Llama Song.

    by farmerchuck on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 04:08:37 PM PST

  •  Very dead on, thanks for this diary (14+ / 0-)

    We don't always see eye to eye, but here, you better believe it. I wound up joking about waking me up when we were at the Revolution.

    I didn't follow the point.

    And you raise some good ones.

    Thanks for this diary to question the notion of using a partisan platform to make non-consensus-based decisions in a really problematic way. I think the diary was trying to just show the decisions of Occupy LA, but it was not clear about that in my view.

  •  actually, because OWS is a leaderless movement (31+ / 0-)

    then it is also true that the author of this diary does not have the authority to decide who can and cannot speak for OWS

    "Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D."

    by TrueBlueMajority on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 04:11:19 PM PST

  •  You do not seem to understand (16+ / 0-)

    what the purpose of that group is.

    It is to allow Dkos members to engage in GA's on Daily Kos.

    Formulating with the input and assent of the Dkos readers a means of action to progress the Occupy Movement.

    How is that a bad thing exactly?

    Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.

    by Horace Boothroyd III on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 04:16:47 PM PST

    •  You can't have an authentic GA (13+ / 0-)

      with a pre-selected membership, and in an autocratically moderated venue. That violates the democratic basis of OWS.

      If the GA isn't democratic from the outset, it isn't OWS.

      People, this is important, very basic stuff.

      •  How is this differnt than a Facebook, (9+ / 0-)

        myspace, or twitter working group?

        How is it those are valid working groups and having one on Dkos is not?

        Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.

        by Horace Boothroyd III on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 04:30:09 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Those working groups usually (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JesseCW, AoT, churchylafemme

          must have their decisions of import ratified by the GA. In other words, they really don't decide anything for the GA, they discuss ideas. But even there, there will often be trained facilitators involved, and they work as part of the local GA.

          I did not say you couldn't have a working group here on DKos. But it will not speak for OWS. This is an autocratic blog. Consensus means nothing here.

          Do what you want, but it is NOT speaking for OWS.

          •  Golly, this all seems like a waste of time and (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Cedwyn

            electrons. Get off your asses and go Occupy some place for real.

            He's a walking contradiction, partly truth and partly fiction. Kris Kristofferson

            by glorificus on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 05:24:11 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Says who? (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            shenderson, Cedwyn, erush1345
            Do what you want, but it is NOT speaking for OWS.

            Don't 90% of you have to agree that this is true before it becomes true?

          •  You're wrong. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            mahakali overdrive, erush1345, kurt

            If a group here were to come to a consensus (whether your 90% or just 51% plurality), it would indeed signify a consensus of those Kossacks who belong to, follow, read or care to weigh in on the topic.

            Your problem is obviously with the self-selective nature of the group, as well as of Kossacks in general. But so what? I do not see that your problem needs to determine what such a group is or does, or that it exists. You are always free to disagree, and have always been free to disagree with any other Kossack about anything.

            Nothing has changed. Tempest in a teapot.

            •  You failed to read or grasp my diary (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              churchylafemme

              True consensus is not produced in an autocratic environment. Dkos is autocratic. One can't find true consensus within an environmental that tells people what they can or can't talk about. And on the site some people are more privileged than others. Consensus is horizontal, wherein all members have an equal voice. It doesn't always work that way on DKos.

              Pretty basic logic. And consensus means far more agreement than 51%. In the Occupy movement, generally 90% or more is required.

              Consensus implies solidarity. There is no solidarity in slim 51% majority.

              When protestors are putting themselves and their physical well being on the line, they need more than 51% agreement, they need solidarity in action. Thus, the OWS movement is based on the consensus model, and with that, the direction of the movement is decided.

              It certainly isn't open to anyone, protesting or not, to tell them what they are protesting about, how they should protest, or what tactics should be used. It is decided by the actual protestors, those so motivated they want to engage in marches and acts of civil disobedience.

              •  Yes, it IS open (0+ / 0-)

                for anyone, anywhere, of any persuasion or none to opine about what the 'movement' is and represents, how they should protest, and what tactics should be used. Deal is, nobody - especially not those physically on the ground doing the occupying - has to embrace a single word of any of it. That's fine and fair, not even something that ought to be an issue. Tempest in a teapot.

                The very fact that Occupy doesn't have any list of demands or designated leaders beyond their physically present GA participants (requisites determined by individual GAs) or even recognized spokespersons means that the 'movement' means whatever people who sympathize or support or care or just bother to notice, get to read into it anything they personally want to read into it. And it will remain that until there are actual policy positions [demands], designated leaders beyond the 90% designated by edict GA participants who can agree to pick up the garbage, and spokespersons recognized as representing said 'movement' to the mainstream press and political machinery.

                It cannot remain what it is now - a lot of kids and homeless people camping out downtown. Quite simply, The Powers That Be will not continue to allow it. Even those mayors and city councils who are allowing the protests to continue unmolested are getting darned uncomfortable about the winter. Hauling out frozen stiff bodies in hand carts or sleds through the snow is not on anybody's preferred 'to do' list. This 'movement' will grow beyond mere tent cities or fade into mere public nuisance rather quickly. That's just the way of things. Some cities may continue to allow homeless/protest tent cities anyway, because they can't afford or don't want to establish real shelters and food kitchens for the increasing ranks. Others will do what they've always done - run 'em out with nighsticks and tear gas, so they'll go somewhere where the downtowners don't have to see them every day.

                Sure, getting clear on agenda, leadership and spokespersons will inevitably lose some of the rank and file who want the 'movement' to be whatever they envision it to be. But others will be drawn in, who are merely sympathetic right now. It's okay. Eventually a "democratic" movement will have to move toward real democracy. Not 90% of the specially selected council members, but a plurality of everyone involved. Won't hurt 'em a bit.

                •  Sorry, but your answer reveals how little you know (0+ / 0-)

                  about OWS.

                  You've made so many erroneous statements about the movement it would takes pages to correct them all.

                  Most of the movements are continuing without occupations in parks, if you haven't kept up. Meetings are still being held, activities still continuing. In Portland for example, there are outreach working groups going out into communities to educate and bring in new members, there are publications being created and maintained, website blogs, more protest activities planned, trainings, spokes council meetings underway, and more.

                  The park occupations are at the moment, in Portland, not being planned, although some still push for it.

                  The movement is primarily a street protest movement. And the success of the model has reached around the world.

                  The movement isn't as leaderless as the consensus process implies: There are movers and shakers in the movement who get up in the morning, make proposals, get them accepted, implement them into action. The difference is these "leaders" don't have absolute authority or dominance over others. They lead with ideas and action, not through authoritarianism. People take responsibility, and the more they are willing to step forward, the more they lead, but they lack the ability seen in hierarchical organizations to consolidate power and dominance. Anyone in any position is challengeable and removable if the consensus requires it.

                  People unaccustomed to the consensus process seem to have trouble grasping how it functions. They seem to think only authoritarian structures can succeed, since that is largely all they have experience with. They either want to tell people what to do, or be told. Linking arms together and moving forward as an equal member of a group seems to bewilder them.

                  By the way, despite your accusation of exclusivity, you won't find a movement more inclusive in function. It isn't "90% of the specially selected council members" making decisions. It is 90% of all present making decisions. When there are spokespersons representing the spokes councils, they act only with consensus of the councils they speak on behalf of. And this IS a protest movement, not a social club or political party, thus membership is loosely defined as at least supporting the protests and the reasons for protest. At the moment, the way this is demonstrated in terms of consensus, is showing up. Sheesh, I barely include myself as a member, despite the fact that I probably have more exposure to the Occupy movement than many here.

                  As to positions regarding policy, the statements, so far, have been rather general, but most people seem to easily grasp what they're about by merely reading the signs: Reinstate Glass-Steagall. Reform and curtail the disproportionate power of Wall Street. Stop transferring wealth away from the 99%. And the evidence that the message has been heard is all the stories in the media about the 1% and the trend to accumulation of wealth at the expense of the middle class.

                  And there are media working groups who provide a rotation of spokespersons to speak to the media. Thus, there are spokespersons.

                  The foundation is being laid, albeit rather slowly. But considering the movement is a few weeks old, the success has been extraordinary. If this continues, great. But even if it were to fade away, its mark has been made. History books will speak of the protest movement of the Great Recession. The conversation has changed for the first time in a great while. No small feat.

                  In light of all that I've said, it seems clear you don't have much experience with the movement or of the direction it's going, but seem to feel comfortable whacking away at me, as if somehow I've disenfranchised people. Ridiculous. People disenfranchise themselves. It's a form of arrogance: Do things our way, bow to our experience, listen to us old farts, or you're excluding us.

                  •  You're right (0+ / 0-)

                    that I'm not all that knowledgeable about individual - or even collective - Occupy methods of doing business. I took your proclamations as someone who IS involved on the ground as typical. Now you tell me they're not? Again, it makes no sense. You said 90% have to approve of any motion on anything.

                    In light of all that I've said, it seems clear you don't have much experience with the movement or of the direction it's going, but seem to feel comfortable whacking away at me, as if somehow I've disenfranchised people. Ridiculous. People disenfranchise themselves. It's a form of arrogance: Do things our way, bow to our experience, listen to us old farts, or you're excluding us.

                    I don't live in the city, and must work for a living. I'm also 60 years old and not about to camp out in the winter snows downtown. So while I applaud the efforts so far and am rooting for the 'movement' to continue in an effective form now that it's got the world's attention, all I can do is support it in spirit. It would be very nice if there were something more than civilly disobedient campers in the park (First Amendment rights) at core. I hope there is, but so far nothing firm I could weigh in on as a supporter, where my input might count. So while I'm following and rooting, it's still pretty much a shrug where I live.

                    I have said nowhere that you or your group must 'bow' to my experience or even hear what I have to say. Which you obviously aren't doing here, so there you go. But I remember the olden days, when my older sister in college tried to get me to start an SDS chapter at our local high school. She was all about demolishing the system back then, young and energetic and ready for change. So was I. But I sure wasn't going to radicalize my classmates more than I'd already been doing as an officer in the NAACP youth council when MLK was still alive without a clear outline of what, exactly, the leadership planned to put into its place when the smoke cleared.

                    She couldn't answer a simple question - Then What? Well, I responded, you can be fairly sure somebody in the agitating hierarchy knows the answer. And if it's not something they'd freely share with you, it's probably not something you'd approve of.

                    There are a million things very, very wrong with our entire system right now. A million entirely legitimate grievances. It's an encouraging sign that millions of people know this, and are finally willing to hit the streets in numbers to be counted. Even if only on weekends or particular actions. But it can't forever be just about the First Amendment right to assemble, speak and petition. It's got to mature into more, and for a viable more you're going to eventually need the occasional participants and invisible supporters a part of the decision-making process, not just the forever-campers. And you just might have to be open to the proposition that a democratic consensus is a plurality, not 90%+.

                    Glad to see you say that is developing as we speak. Great! Thus once again I am mystified by your complaint.

                    •  Your response, once agian (0+ / 0-)

                      imputes conclusions and statements to me I never made.

                      And what is "my complaint"?

                      You're skimming, not reading every word, apparently.

                      And I never asserted the OWS movement was moving to a plurality, rather than consensus. Not sure where you got that.  

                      And again, you assert the movement is only about 1st amendment rights, rather than protesting economic inequality. Not sure why your persist with the meme.

                      And once again, despite informing you many of the Occupy movements aren't inhabiting parks anymore (although that could return, I suppose) you still define  the movement that way, as if it's a slur.

                      By the way, it seems necessary to dispel your notion that all occupiers have lived in the camps full time. Most of the core group don't do this. They go home, to their jobs, their kids, their studies. Some have spent extraordinary amounts of free time in the movement. Some are beyond your age, even some who had lived in the parks. There is an elder council that is active.

                      People have sent blankets and clothing to Portland from such distant places as Texas. Many people out in the world have found ways to be a part of this and support the movement.

                      There is so much you don't know. Frankly, your negative attitude reveals something, but I don't see a valid basis for it so far. Seems some sort of bitterness coming through that is unexplained. It is a protest movement, protesting Wall Street, and has had great successes in a short few weeks. What's wrong with that? You're critical because you think they will soon be failing? So what? They are doing it, not you. Succeed, fail, it is all occurring without your help, as you've admitted.

                      So what's your real beef? Beyond all that you've said, I'm not quite sure why you are complaining about OWS, or about my diary, so I'm left to read between the lines.

                      •  As in, you neither need nor want (0+ / 0-)

                        my support. Which is fine. I don't share too much in common with city dwellers in the first place, people come camp at my place when they want to "get away from it all." We don't go camping anymore anywhere, since we live in a neighborhood we share with bears, turkeys, deer, raccoons, coyotes and bobcats instead of humans.

                        My family will survive whatever's coming, if it comes to that. The homestead is functional and productive, they've been taught all they really need to know. I gave up on this system more than 30 years ago, have been establishing our alternative for the past 20 years. But I always hoped it wouldn't come to that.

                        My mother was a counselor at an Indian School [BIA] back in the early '70s, hosted Dennis Banks back when he was working very hard to recruit members for AIM. We attended and were gung-ho to put our bodies on the counting line as we'd done for civil rights and anti-Vietnam back in the day. He told us he'd take our money (of which as semi-starving college kids we had none), but he didn't want our bodies on the line. We were "too white."

                        I told Banks "good luck," and meant it. But I never sent them any money, and never put my body on the line. And they didn't get very far either, in the real world of what could have been accomplished relatively quickly if they hadn't been so discriminatory. Their choice in the end, I'm fine with that. Just don't wanna hear no bitchin' after the fact about what could have been "if only." Too little, too late.

                        If y'all are already to what could have been, I'll sigh and shrug. If you ever figure out you need other people in order for it to count in the wider world, let me know. I might be up for it if I'm not busy doing something more effective or pertinent in my own experience... but when/if you do, you'll need more than just your own personal angst if you expect me to get excited about it. There's real shit going down all over the place, on a number of levels. I'll be dealing with that where I can in the meantime.

      •  Then no GA is OWS (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TheGeneral, Cedwyn, mdmslle, KalHermit

        because by geography it is pre-selecting its membership.

        •  But that's not deliberately pre-selecting (3+ / 0-)

          That factor can't be controlled, while other factors can. Most Occupy GA's are by definition local. What matters is holding the meetings somewhere where people can attend because they want to make that choice without censurship. That isn't possible on DKos, and the threat of being disciplined by not following site rules is highly likely, given the civilly disobedient nature of the OWS movement. That threat alone corrupts the process, since people's attitudes will be reflecting those site rules.

          Read the dairy, I explain all this.

    •  Not a problem? (3+ / 0-)

      I'm so confused... Horace! I'm not kidding.

      Then again, I have a fever and have been staring at the computer for some days.

      Now I have to think on this some more. All of it.

      •  I'm confused and don't have a fever. (0+ / 0-)

        It just seems dogmatic to latch onto "democracy" as the only way to declare a GA as vald. If the Koch bros paid a thousand people to vote to support Republicans no one woud support that.

        I am probably missing something because my #ows experience is stopping by #occupy Irvine which had maybe ten people camping on a corner holding signs.

        I think that the best argument to make against a DK GA is that the forum does not lend itself to this.

        Unapologetically pro-citizen. Not anti-corporation just very pro-citizen.

        by CanYouBeAngryAndStillDream on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 08:52:59 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Is there always only one person at an OWS (9+ / 0-)

      movement that decides whether another single person can stay or they have to be banned?

      I think that's part of the point.

      You do not seem to understand
      what the purpose of that group is.

      It is to allow Dkos members to engage in GA's on Daily Kos.

      Who allows DK members to join and stay?

      If we have consensus as to who can join this site and participate, no matter what, then that's another story.

      We delivered. They failed us. We have moved on. (h/t to my good friend)

      by gooderservice on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 04:32:19 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The goal is great (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ZhenRen, JesseCW, annan, churchylafemme

      The problem brought up in the diary is not that it is a bad goal, it is that this is not a platform that allows for a consensus making process in a GA.

      There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

      by AoT on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 04:38:27 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  divide and conquer n/t (7+ / 0-)

    "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

    by Andrew C White on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 04:27:16 PM PST

  •  Who sets the agenda? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    erush1345
    The OWS movement is based on a leaderless consensus model.

    I've read some of the minutes, and it seems that the agenda is pretty important.  Who sets it?  How are items added?
    •  The General Assembly (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      churchylafemme

      collectively decides. People can offer proposals at the GA, and try to reach consensus in the GA to adopt them.

      •  I've read minutes and never seen that occur. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        erush1345

        I've never seen discussions of what would be on future agendas, and I've probably read every set of minutes.

        •  I've been at GA's on the ground (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          shenderson, churchylafemme

          and this is my experience. I've spent days and days at these events. I have no idea what you're "read." Perhaps the minutes  you read are, as in Portland, just summaries, not real minutes.

          •  So I live in Oregon (9+ / 0-)

            I own a farm.  I have about 200 animals that need to be taken care of on a daily basis.

            I have no way to leave town without abusing my animals.

            According to you, I have no voice, because I can't make it physically to OWS Portland.

            •  This is vital. I cannot attend any GA's (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              mdmslle, davehouck, kurt, evergreen2

              either because I have only had ONE day off (plus half of Thanksgiving Day) since August. Since pre-OWS. I have not yet physically been able to take off the "at least" three hours that would be needed to go to a GA. So I post online. I tweet. I send a few bucks to OWS in NYC. We are strong supporters in my house. My SO as well. Who ALSO has not had a day off since August.

              I do blog here, but it's while working only. Occasionally while cooking dinner or before bed.

              So that's an argument that I've heard for the working lower classes, like our family, as well as many POC too.

              I keep thinking we can go to a GA in December when we have a break.

              It's not usual to work seven days a week, but it's our reality over here. It's like military hours.

              Which brings up an interesting question about military participation in the GA's.

              Although I think in person GA's are crucial. I also just realize not everyone can go to them. For some people, for work reasons, transport reasons, health reasons, it's not possible. And many do need representation.

              Although I am not saying it will happen on this site. Obviously. Also, I do appreciate those who are able to make it out; I have many acquaintances still camping. Or at least dropping by here and there.

            •  Then watch the livestream, and make comments (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              churchylafemme

              on the OPDX blog, or start a local Occupy movement in your nearest town, like some friends of mine did in Iowa.

              This is a protest movement, not a replacement government.

      •  And who are those people? (5+ / 0-)

        Do you include the rural people?  Those working two jobs?  How about the disabled?

        •  This is becoming trolling. Please stop (3+ / 0-)

          You've asked this question several times.

          There are disabled people at the meetings I go to. They are motivated, so they go.

          I am rural, to a degree. I drive way in. I go freuently.

          Also, you can start an occupy movement in a small town nearby. I have friends who have doe just that, and they love it.

          This is a protest movement, not a mechanism to replace your own activism in ways that you are able to accomplish.

          The consensus process isn't binding to anyone not present, it is a process participated in by the protestors.

    •  Who decided that there is no leader? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Joieau, erush1345

      Who could possibly have been authorized to make such a decision?

      •  The people decide, collectively (3+ / 0-)

        I know that's a tough concept to get your mind around, given our hierarchical society, but it is possible for people to collectively decide. Who decided that all organization must be hierarchical?

        •  What if somebody disagrees? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Wendy Slammo, erush1345
          •  People disagree all the time (3+ / 0-)

            We don't go forward unless we achieve at least 90% agreement. We make this happen by giving everyone a voice, and that can be amazingly cathartic, and people often wind up changing positions to find group agreement.

            Most people have never felt as if they were listened to, and when this occurs, a beautiful thing can occur. People feel as if they are part of a community that cares. They begin to let go of hostilities, and want to move along with the rest.

            •  What is going to happen, or what happens, (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              erush1345

              when there is an important decision to be made and the crowd is 50/50 or 60/40 or whatever and people feel strongly about their positions?

              •  Consensus isn't achieved then (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                kurt, churchylafemme

                This isn't rocket surgery.

                It isn't a flawless model, but perhaps we could expend some time now picking apart all the flaws in the 50+1 model?

                "As the madmen play on words, and make us all dance to their song / to the tune of starving millions, to make a better kind of gun..." -- Iron Maiden

                by Lost Left Coaster on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 08:26:33 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I think that is a major problem. (0+ / 0-)

                  I know that critiquing OWS is in itself highly controversial for some reason, but there is a reason that organizations have ways to resolve such non-unanimous differences. OWS is a huge success right now. They could halt the protests temporarily, threatening to come back if Congress doesn't work on campaign finance and banking reform, and then do so in greater numbers. Or some other strategy, of any sort. But if they just stay and stay with no ability to make one set of concrete, actionable demands, they will be doomed to failure. The American people will tire of perpetual encampments. Now lambaste me for having the gall to even speak about OWS without being in a tent myself.

                  •  Ah, so you've spoken to me before (0+ / 0-)

                    No, frankly, I don't see the harm in people on Daily Kos kvetching about how ineffective and futile this movement is. I think that the results of the movement speak for themselves. I think OWS has accomplished more in two months than MoveOn and OFA do in two years. On the other hand, I think that there are probably lots of points where OWS could be doing things better. Plenty of room to make a critique. A movement that prides itself on practicing direct democracy should be plenty ready to deal with critiques. As a matter of fact, it seems to me that the whole general assembly model is designed to find ways to find better ways of doing things. Some people may argue that OWS has found a perfect model, but you won't hear that from me.

                    But two things I'm not a huge fan of: 1) People pick at the GA consensus model with the underlying assumption that the more common 50+1 model that we're all trained to accept in US culture as the expression of democracy is the superior model. I wish that people would at least consider the reasons that OWS has made the consensus model the center of the movement. It is not incidental; it is of prime importance. And 2) A lot of people on Daily Kos seem to think that the members of OWS should be, I don't know, I guess reading blog comments and doing their best to remedy every criticism that comes along. But OWS is built on a model that does not readily translate to blog communities. It is true that the movement is most responsive to the people who show up and participate and take direct responsibility for making the movement happen. And the blog comment model (in which, of course, I am participating right now) doesn't really seem to be adequate. OWS seems to need a deeper level of participation than diaries arguing that they're doing it wrong.

                    "As the madmen play on words, and make us all dance to their song / to the tune of starving millions, to make a better kind of gun..." -- Iron Maiden

                    by Lost Left Coaster on Mon Nov 28, 2011 at 06:19:29 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

      •  Why does it have to be one person? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kurt

        It was decided by consensus.

        Unapologetically pro-citizen. Not anti-corporation just very pro-citizen.

        by CanYouBeAngryAndStillDream on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 09:07:18 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  That is an easy thing to decide (0+ / 0-)

          by consensus. But there will be harder decisions for which some system that leads to a decision will need to be deployed. Or they will sit there until the public turns against them (which is inevitable, we all know that).

  •  Going to have to provide avenues for those (14+ / 0-)

    that can't or don't want to go to physical GA's, seems to me.  I agree with your diary in general relative to this private site, but have a little trouble with the standing in the rain to prove your mettle thing.  The 99% isn't just a symbol imo, it's a reality and somehow we need much greater participation than we're seeing so far.  
    I don't know, there sure are alot of do's and don't's for a leaderless movement.
    I agree the mission of this site doesn't fit with that of OWS, but the issues can still be discussed in some manner I would hope.  
     

    •  There is only one do and don't: (3+ / 0-)

      The do's: There must be direct democracy, and consensus. Everyone is given an equal voice.

      The don't's: We will not be co-opted by leaders or people who try to manipulate the group, and take us down paths without obtaining real consensus.

      Pretty simple, and far less restrictions than in hierarchical models where one person dictates to the rest of us.

      No thanks.

      •  No thanks? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mahakali overdrive, TheGeneral

        I'm confused.
        I guess it'll all shake out in the wash.

      •  everyone is given an equal voice?def (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Richard Lyon, erush1345, kurt, evergreen2

        Define "everyone" because it's starting to seem like the only ones with "a voice" are occupiers. And that is the antithesis of the entire purpose of the movement: having a few select people with enough time and means to be able to occupy, "representing" me in my absence.

        When and where does the rest of "everyone" get to make their voice heard? By you definition almost any online venue would be an unacceptable place to discuss solutions. And then if we did, we'd need to "come to an actual GA" to be heard.

        Fuck, sounds a lot like heirarchy to me. And also a lot like whole swaths of people risk being disenfranchised.

        Take that back to the GA and discuss it. Let us know whether our feelings have merit. Ok?

        I've become re-radicalized. Thanks a lot you bunch of oligarchical fascist sons-of-bitches. But once again, I have no choice. Bring it the fuck on.

        by mdmslle on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 07:51:32 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  This is a protest movement (2+ / 0-)

          It is not a party. Those who protest make decisions about the protest by consensus. People who don't protest are not present to determine the nature of the protest.

          We don't determine what you have for breakfast, because we aren't eating it. You don't get to say how the protest goes if you aren't participating. That is democracy.

          •  Got it. How incredibly elitist. You cannot (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            erush1345, evergreen2, boriquasi

            becannot be presuming to speak, then, for anyone but yourselves. Certainly not the 99% because you just told me that unless I'm physically there, I have no say.

            Keep it up. You'll be in the same approval range as our equally ineffectual congress. But at least I'd never expect to hear from my congress critters mouth what you just said to me here.

            Wow.

            I've become re-radicalized. Thanks a lot you bunch of oligarchical fascist sons-of-bitches. But once again, I have no choice. Bring it the fuck on.

            by mdmslle on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 08:24:17 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  There are people working on this right now (10+ / 0-)

      And it is very, very important.  I really want to see people start online GAs.

      And no one has a problem with discussing things here, that's what we're here for.  The problem is saying that we can come to a real, meaningful consensus here because of the exclusivity of the community.

      There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

      by AoT on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 05:07:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Good deal. Thanks. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kurt

        Getting reduced to passivity.

        •  You can also start working on things online (6+ / 0-)

          with other people.  There's no requirement that you need some perfect GA to take actions and start organizing, either online or in real life.  Start thinking up ideas and working on possible actions.

          There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

          by AoT on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 05:18:26 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I'll say that I rebel against requirements (6+ / 0-)

            and am too old to put up with bullshit.  I actually started on this before most, with the Stop the Machine movement in D.C., that has now morphed into Occupy D.C.. I was also part of a group on another blog dealing with the overall message of Stop the Machine.  Then it seemed like all of a sudden OWS popped up and all these rules and consensus Mic check things.  Let's just say I am working on tactics and actions but waiting for the right time.

            •  Even in the context of the occupations (5+ / 0-)

              you don't need to go through the process to do stuff.  You can just plan actions and then spread the word.  The vast majority of the actions do not go through the GA.  I've personally never run a proposal through the GA, though I've done lots of autonomous actions.

              And it's good to hear about people working on actions, the more the better, whether they be from the occupations or not.

              There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

              by AoT on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 07:10:28 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

      •  Id like to hear more (6+ / 0-)

        about that. I cant quite see "online GA's" but discussion groups just to brainstorm ideas or approaches could be done online for sure, I would think.  And proposal suggestions could be shared with the appropriate on ground Work Group. The local Occupy's website Forums would seem the logical place for that, to accomodate the "Virtual Occupiers" who can't be at the occupation site itself often or at all, but who may have good insights or ideas and want to contribute in some way (beyond or aside from cash donations).

        Do good from the heart and fight like hell. ~cosmic debris

        by Lady Libertine on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 05:38:43 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Agree that this is important ... (7+ / 0-)

        As a trained professional facilitator in real life (although I have no formal OWS training so I'm just learning the terms) it occurs to me that we have a problem with semantics in this discussion.

        It appears that the sticking point is between the rules defining formal GA processes and those defining working group process.

        As I understand the GA process, DKos is not an appropriate GA for the reasons that ZhenRen has articulated.

        However, it seems that a DKos forum defined as a working group chewing on ideas that are important to members of Daily Kos would be as appropriate as a kitchen working group or a library working group, right?

        Thinking out loud ...

        For instance, as a Daily Kos working group we discuss a specific set of goals that we are proposing to the larger OWS movement. But we state at the outset that this is a Democratic agenda that needs to be woven into the OWS fabric and the appropriate way to do that would be to take that to a larger GA for consensus in the future.

        "Let us not look back to the past with anger, nor towards the future with fear, but look around with awareness." James Thurber

        by annan on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 06:43:15 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Working groups (0+ / 0-)

          in the OWS movement are also "leaderless" and use the same consensus approach as adopted in the GA.

          Everyone gets to speak, no one is self appointed, no one has more authority than another.

          On DKos, there will be no real consensus, since the very rules of the site corrupt that process. Still, there is no reason people can't go forward with this. But many of us with actual experience in the Occupy movement will likely not see the results as having any real part of OWS other than an expression of opinion.

          But I never stated that people couldn't opine. Only that OWS is not a branch of the Dem party, and in a REAL working group associated with OWS, no one would fear making comments that might offend rules as exemplified on this site.

          While I applaud that you have training as a facilitator, even facilitators in OWS don't have authority, nor do they make policy, and nor do their opinions have greater weight or gravity on policies adopted. They simply have training to guide people through a GA meeting. I've seen facilitators removed immediately at GA's when the group didn't think they were being objective.

          Hope this helps provide insights.

          •  Good stuff ... (0+ / 0-)

            I really appreciate this diary and your insights.

            Just to clarify a point that many people don't seem to understand, a professionally trained facilitator by definition is neutral and objective. This is actually codified by the International Association of Facilitators.

            We are not the leader of the group, we don't have authority (other than to maintain the process and that authority is given by the group itself) or make policy for the group. We are simply there to guide the process.

            Most people have been conditioned to see the person standing in front of the group as the "leader" and its up to the facilitator to continually give power directly back to the group.

            "Let us not look back to the past with anger, nor towards the future with fear, but look around with awareness." James Thurber

            by annan on Sat Dec 03, 2011 at 11:25:58 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  Good points (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mahakali overdrive, Cedwyn

    It even goes further.... there's a DKOS group called "Occupy Wall Street", which ironically you're a member of. It follows the authority based structure that DailyKOS has inherently designed in the Groups feature. The defacto founder and owner is Horace Boothroyd and there is appears to be a tiered authority structure of Editors and Contributors.

    Definitely not what OWS stands for, imo.

  •  My understanding (11+ / 0-)

    was that the diary was talking about working to try to make progress on some of those demands, the first one being the constitutional amendment to get money out of politics.

    I did not interpret the diary as trying to create a set of demands for OWS but rather to select one of the demands and try to work on it from an activist perspective.

    The GA thing, I understood to be the diarist's decision to try to use some of the processes used by OWS but not trying to be OWS.

    I could easily be wrong.  But that was my interpretation, that it was not an attempt to try to speak for OWS but to help them achieve goals.

    •  That's what it sounded like to me, too, but the (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Cedwyn, evergreen2

      guys would rather hear/read their own opinons so much they just go on and on.

      He's a walking contradiction, partly truth and partly fiction. Kris Kristofferson

      by glorificus on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 05:26:48 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  I just read further (8+ / 0-)

      Yes, a real GA and real consensus cannot be achieved here.  Your arguments convinced me.  I had not thought of the site rules, the preferential treatment of certain users, the fact that people can get banned for expressing an opinion, etc. The fact that it is a private space and autocratic, no training for facilitators (though that could be achieved, I think, if not for all the other hurdles).

      It could be used for activism to help achieve one of the goals set forth by OWS through activism, but that would be the extent of it.

      •  WTF? ... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        edwardssl, mahakali overdrive, Cedwyn
        Yes, a real GA and real consensus cannot be achieved here.  Your arguments convinced me.  I had not thought of the site rules, the preferential treatment of certain users, the fact that people can get banned for expressing an opinion, etc. The fact that it is a private space and autocratic, no training for facilitators (though that could be achieved, I think, if not for all the other hurdles).

        Did I read that right?  Did you just argue that the Occupy Movement can't exist here because it's private and therefore subject to arbitrary rules?  

        Well then what the fuck were people doing in Zucotti Park, a private park, for two months?  

        I thought the Occupy Movement's express purpose is to occupy such spaces as a form of civil disobedience, in which case, Daily Kos is the perfect place to occupy.

        Forgive me, but it sounds like you guys are more invested in whining about Markos than you are in real activism.  A real movement would occupy DK for all the reasons you say it can't be occupied.

        •  I think people are saying that (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          fou, annan, mallyroyal

          civil disobedience here results in bannings.

          I'm not sure what they mean though in that IRL, if someone is disruptive with a GA, would they not be equally dealt with? I've worked plenty with 100% consensus model (90% is not real consensus model). If someone's on meth or having a break with reality, and yes, it happens, or if some racist starts shouting over people, they are asked to leave. We did have this problem routinely for a long time with a mentally um... I cannot think of the word since I don't know what he was but he would rant and rave for hours about C/T's without any notice of other human beings in his nearby vicinity...

          ...and even the most stolid, stolid Anarchists would think of fun ways to shut the mic on him or distract him.

          He was recently smack dab in the newspaper too!

          Right in the middle of our local OWS rally!

          I laughed and groaned and thought, "Hit the mic!"

          We usually would just move around the corner. I do know MinuteMen tried to borrow our open mic once and some ARA wound up getting highly confrontational with them.  

          •  Okay ... (4+ / 0-)
            I think people are saying that (0+ / 0-)
            civil disobedience here results in bannings.

            Well first of all, it depends on how the site was occupied.  An occupation wouldn't necessarily have a hostile relationship to the owner.  The people who occupied Zuccotti Park didn't do so to punish its owner ...

            Sure people will get banned, but people are getting and will get arrested in meat space ... so I fail to see why that's a reason not to occupy.

            Mind you, I am in no way advocating such an occupation.  I'm merely playing devil's advocate.

            That crazy guy you described is the reason I don't do direct democracy.

            •  Well, don't look at me (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              fou, annan, mallyroyal, kurt

              I am but a lowly Socialist. I'm working with what I've got here. It's definitely not perfect. Do you have any idea how used to being odd man out I am? It's part of why I value figuring out how to work with so many people. Also, my own personal ethics always trump my ideological concerns.

              I support OWS. I like that it's done some things that I strongly support.

              He was arrested one time and so I held on to his back pack for him and gave it to the jail (it was left behind on the ground)... he was just not well. A definite tough one. I feel bad for people in those states. I felt compassionate for him, but he's not well indeed. It made it tough.

              I feel like I was dealing with these issues years ago. At times, I have to say I was really, really glad for consensus. We had a problem with sexual harassment in one group, and were able to confront it better because of.

            •  The difference between banned and arrested (6+ / 0-)

              is that when people here get banned they never get to participate in the conversation again.  Not only that but there are specific positions that will never be accepted here, which means that it would be pointless to pretend like we were having a real, open conversation.  

              There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

              by AoT on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 07:25:27 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  If you want to consider things like the (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            KalHermit, kurt

            boycott week as 'civil disobedience', then I saw a ton of people who were 'civilly disobedient' and didn't get banned.

            Incivility can get a ban here, though.

            That having been said, I do think it's silly to 'occupy' DK.  The vast majority of site users are both economically informed and all behind the 99%.  It's simply a 'preaching to the choir' here.  'Occupy' activities need to be out where they're being seen be people who aren't active, aren't wonkish.

        •  First, you could not have read (5+ / 0-)

          the diary and then make the comment you just made. The diarist laid it all out pretty clearly how a GA and true consensus works and this platform doesn't allow it.

          Second, Zuccotti is not a private park, it has a special designation as a Privately Owned Public Space and that has been discussed at length here so that link and a search of that term at dkos can get you a lot more information about that.

          Third, your statement about how a real movement would occupy dkos for the reasons I stated -- that makes no sense.  kos can ban whoever he wants to ban with no consistency, has stated that he would, and has done so.  Is your real movement going to take over his servers or something?  The thing to do would be to start a new site that was not autocratic.

          •  Clearly, I have to slow down for you (4+ / 0-)

            to catch up.

            First, I'd like to read the title of this article.

            I'll include it here if clicking a link proves too challenging for you: Privately Owned Park, Open to the Public, May Make Its Own Rules.

            Now, let's concentrate on the title before we consider anything more complicated.  Let's break it down.

            Privately Owned Park

            Let's consider what this means.  Zucotti Park is owned by a private entity, yes?  Understood?  You already know that Daily Kos is privately owned.  Now you know that Zuccotti Park is also privately owned.

            Open to the Public

            Zucotti Park is also open to the public.  That means that anyone may access its grounds.  Now, as you may know, Daily Kos is also open to the public.  That means that you or I or anyone else can open an account here and participate in discussions that are subject to certain rules, which brings us to the third and final phrase in the title:

            May Make Its Own Rules.

            You see Joanne, because Zucotti Park is privately owned, its owner is permitted establish rules for its usage.  So, even though the owner allows public access to the park, the owner can still restrict its usage to certain forms of activity.  

            Now for the quiz:  Is Daily Kos also a privately owned blog that allows public access according to certain rules?

            Hint: Don't be confused by the fact that Daily Kos is a blog and Zucotti Park is a park.

            •  A little more condescension (5+ / 0-)

              and I'm sure people will start to listen to you.

              "As the madmen play on words, and make us all dance to their song / to the tune of starving millions, to make a better kind of gun..." -- Iron Maiden

              by Lost Left Coaster on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 07:59:38 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Well, you thought enough to reply ... (0+ / 0-)

                So clearly I'm doing something right ...

                Oh and there is that pesky little fact that I'm correct.  I know that's why you're annoyed, but you have to admit that it's kind of embarrassing that one of this site's more prominent occupiers doesn't know or understand such basic facts.

                And why aren't you annoyed with her for suggesting I haven't read the post?  Where's your snarky little jab at her condescension?  Hmmm?  

                If one isn't forthcoming, then I'll assume it's because you're a hypocrite who believes that I am the only one in this exchange capable of condescension, which is frankly more insulting to her than me.

                •  Whoa... (2+ / 0-)
                  Don't be confused by the fact that Daily Kos is a blog and Zucotti Park is a park.

                  I don't think it makes me or anyone else confused per se to point out the fact that a park that is fully accessible to the public (even if it is subject to rules) and a privately owned website are, in fact, two different things. That's not exactly a radical proposition, to say that they're different. For example, one is built of concrete, the other of bits and pixels...I could go on, but it hardly seems necessary.

                  "As the madmen play on words, and make us all dance to their song / to the tune of starving millions, to make a better kind of gun..." -- Iron Maiden

                  by Lost Left Coaster on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 08:41:57 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Um, no. (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    erush1345
                    I don't think it makes me or anyone else confused per se to point out the fact that a park that is fully accessible to the public (even if it is subject to rules) and a privately owned website are, in fact, two different things.

                    Both are privately owned.  Both are fully accessible to the public.  Access to both is governed by rules established by their private owners.  If you have a hard time understanding such basic similarities, you are in fact confused.

                    That's not exactly a radical proposition, to say that they're different. For example, one is built of concrete, the other of bits and pixels...I could go on, but it hardly seems necessary.

                    I watched Fargo last night, and all I have to say to this is: "Aw Jeez."

            •  I'm aware (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              ZhenRen, churchylafemme

              of the type of park that is, fou, otherwise I would not have told you about the type of park that it is.

              If you do some more reading about this special type of park, you will find that it is not quite as cut and dry as you make it out to be.

              It's clear that you want a fight.  I am not willing to give it to you.  

        •  Occupying is not the issue (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ZhenRen, churchylafemme

          Consensus is the issue. Apples and oranges.

          Yes we could occupy Daily Kos. In fact, we're doing that right now.

          However, we can't take the next step due to the structural barriers to free and flowing communication.

          "Let us not look back to the past with anger, nor towards the future with fear, but look around with awareness." James Thurber

          by annan on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 06:50:39 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Really? (0+ / 0-)
            In fact, we're doing that right now.

            If you are occupying, then don't the rules governing consensus apply?  If you are occupying, then wouldn't a consensus be attainable and actionable by definition?

            Seems to me that you can't in fact be occupying if no consensus can be established due to the context ...

      •  The diarist (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AoT, annan, triv33

        in the diary referenced, uses language and terms common to the occupy movement, speaks of Occupy Daily Kos, speaks of "blocks" and "stacks" and "consensus" building, as if to be using the Occupy model. And the diarist speaks of his diary initiating an occupation of DKos, and of the "stack" being open, etc. NO, this is being presented as part of the Occupy movement. And yet, already there are enormous issues surfacing that trample on the consensus process.

        For example, who elected the diarist to be the facilitator? Who moderates his diaries? How are facilitators chosen? How are hide rates handled? Who is included, who is not? How are site moderators excluded from enforcing site rules to "support democrats"? How do we bring back voices that were banned for non-GA reasons? How do we overcome the site pre-existing biases? How do we handle provocateurs? How do we handle the rec list, which could shoot down a facilitator's diary in favor of some competing pretense of OWS? People here won't follow the consensus model, and will rec up any so-called OWS diary they think supports some pet cause or politician. It will be superficial consensus, if at all.

        How do we stop co-opting of the movement (an attempt which, in my view from what I have seen here, is already underway). Etc, etc,,etc, etc.

        DKos is not suitable to create a reliable consensus on ANYTHING. This venue is inappropriate for the OWS movement. If people want to continue, whatever, but I can predict what most occupiers in the parks will say about this: Do what you want, but it isn't truly consensus.

        As an example, look at my present diary. Have any of the people on DKos who identify with OWS rec'd it for the sake of group discussion? Or have they acknowledged that my voice matters? Or have they come into the diary telling me that I don't understand, when I have quite likely spent far more time on the ground at Occupy events in my city than most on this site? In the occupy GA meetings, all voices are treated with respect and valued. Is my voice being treated as a valued part of OWS?

        It is impossible to use the Occupy model on DKos, for all the reasons I cited. The fact that so many are failing to see these basic points indicates a lack of real experience with the Occupy movement, and a failure to grasp the simple, yet rather different model OWS is using.

        This occurs at actual GA's all the time: People need to be constantly reminded that this model really does try to be inclusive and reach as much real consensus as possible. These aren't just words, they are essential parts of the structure.

      •  But real consensus cannot be achieved (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mdmslle, KalHermit, erush1345

        by public meetings in parks in major cities.  Too many people are excluded from that.

        So we have a problem.

        •  The meetings are for those who want to be part (0+ / 0-)

          of the Occupy movement. The movement isn't a political party. Our consensus is only binding to ourselves, and not binding to anyone outside the GA.

          Thus, none are excluded, since this is participatory democracy. It is a protest movement, not a conventional political party.

    •  Also (3+ / 0-)

      I should not have used the word "demands" in that comment.  I should have used the word "declarations".

    •  That was my understanding and interpretation of (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Nada Lemming, joanneleon, kurt, evergreen2

      the Diary mentioned also.  I tipped and rec'd as another incubator for ideas and bringing more people into the discussion.  I thought the Diarist was pretty clear on seeking ideas for how to come to consensus in an online forum and how to percolate actionable ideas into the mainstream of the OWS movement.

      •  REad my diary (0+ / 0-)

        I explain why consensus on this site will be flawed. Come up with any ideas you like, but don't pretend that the process is democratic, because it won't be.

        •  The premise that I must not have read your diary (5+ / 0-)

          if I disagree with you is more than a little insulting. However, I've agreed with alot of what you've written in the past and consider your passion a strength.

          Is Occupy KOS flawed? Sure. So is everything else about this movement. That doesn't mean you abandon a great and necessary cause.

          Camping out is flawed.  It's intrusive in that there is no where you can camp that's appropriate to gain attention that won't encroach on others' use of the area you are camping.  At some point, you will be asked or forced to vacate your campsite.  You may be pepper sprayed.  It's flawed. But you keep trying.

          If you march in the streets, you will block the use of the street by some people who really need to use it.  Some of those people will be the very people you are fighting for.  That's flawed.  

          I've been to a few GAs.  They are flawed - not everybody represented by the 99% are there.  Some are uncomfortable speaking up or sharing their ideas. You can't hear everything being said even with a good People's Mic system.  That's flawed.

          The movement is flawed and that's ok.  I think any and every method of developing ideas and practical actions to achieve goals should be encouraged.

          And I appreciate your efforts too.  I just disagree with you on this.

          •  The basis of the movement is direct democracy (0+ / 0-)

            When this is attempted on an autocratic site, it is not just a little flawed, it is unworkable and diametrically opposite to the basic groundwork of the movement.

            Not all voices of the 99% will be heard in a protest movement. By that I mean, this is participatory democracy. People who want to protest go to the meetings. They discuss what the protest is about. They find consensus about why they are protesting, how they want to protest, where they want to protest. If you aren't there, then you naturally wouldn't have a voice in the protest. I think people are confusing the OWS movement with a party.

            It is a protest movement, not a political party

            •  The site may be autocratic (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              kurt

              But the people who come here are not.  Could Markos shut down diaries and ban Diarists?  Yes. Can the Portland police evict OPDX?  They did.

              I don't see OPDX as any more representative of Portland (which is not to say I don't support it - I do!) than a DKOS group would be of the country or the Democratic party, or liberals or progressives.  

              I didn't get the impression from the Diarist that s/he meant to "occupy" DKOS so much as build a community forum on DKos to share ideas and potentially, in some sort of GA fashion (which the Diarist admittedly didn't know how would work) propose consensus supported actions or proposals.  The title of the Diary is: Occupy DailyKos: Solutions Working Group.

              I'm not a follower of you or the other Diarist. I thought the idea had some merit that was worthy of exploration - the end result might be that it doesn't work - but it's worthy of exploration.  

              I'm at the point where I think you have something specific against that Diarist and I really don't want to be a part of a personal squabble - which is what this all sounds like after reading through the comments.  

              I look to this site to share and consider information and ideas, and to stay informed. We should all be supporting each other to build ideas and come up with new ways of doing things - not shooting people down we don't agree with.

              •  Some of the commenters seem hostile (0+ / 0-)

                I agree. I seem to have touched a nerve, which I could offer some analysis about, but I'm a bit tired. But I assure you, your assumptions about personal squabbles are way out of line. I have no history with the diarist, and I actually support the endeavor to a degree, but I don't support the notion that OWS consensus can be achieved here. The ows consensus implies free association, wherein people can gather to decide, free of fear of being censured, any issues that come up in the protest movement. It is VERY democratic, inclusive, tolerant of disagreement, and patient, allowing all to reasonably have a voice. As such, it can be very cathartic to participants, unlike the horrible pie fights that occur here.

                On DKos, by its very foundation and organization, that isn't possible. I don't think we should deceive ourselves into thinking we have consensus, as defined in OWS, which is broad and inclusive, when we are on a site that has so many limitations as to purpose and goals, and associated limitations to speech. The sites goals are not necessarily compatible with OWS goals.

                You comparison to PDX isn't very useful. Markos can selectively encourage some to come forward, onto the front page, and discourage other voices, by a variety of methods. And the participants here are a specific, pre-determined group with certain ideologues that people here find compatible. That isn't the way the occupy movement works.

  •  I don't think it matters whether... (8+ / 0-)

    ... the commenters here at Daily Kos are part of the Occupy Wall Street movement or not. Discussion about tactics, alternatives, and additional actions is important. People from different backgrounds can put forward many efforts toward structural social reform, and they can act more or less in parallel with each other.

    For example, I'm trying to organize sign-waiving & leafleting in my community to encourage people to switch to credit unions. I don't think of myself as representing Occupy Wall Street, but I do tell the G.A. what I'm doing, and I know I'm acting in parallel with the Occupy movement.

    Daily Kos certainly can't be the hub of discussion about OWS, and nobody would want it to be. But the members here can contribute to the discussion, and they can find additional ways to be visible and persuasive in their own communities.

    When you think about it, nobody can claim to be the Occupy movement. It's leaderless. Some people participate more than others. Some people participate differently. The more diverse and distributed it is, the better.

    •  Indeed, however (0+ / 0-)

      let's not pretend that consensus on an autocratic site which prohibits certain forms of speech is authentic or representative of OWS.

      •  Nor can a group of people (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        KalHermit, erush1345, kurt

        that say only those who can show up to a park in a big city can have a voice is representative of OWS.

        •  Actually that isn't true (0+ / 0-)

          The movement is a protest movement, and as such, the participants get to decide, by the process they have adopted, how they will protest, what they will protest, who they will protest, and why they protest.

          If you want to start a different protest movement, by all means do so.

          But lets not pretend that there can be freedom to arrive at a consensus on a site that autocratically controls speech.

      •  I get it! OWS is becoming like congress! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        erush1345, kurt

        we regular folk can meet in any venue to discuss what we think should be done but it's not "official" until we pass the idea along to a select group of people who have the ability (for whatever reason) to be able to live in a park. They'll discuss my idea (if it gets on stack) and if 90% of them like it, I'm golden!

        Got it.

        That's democratic.

        Maybe there should be an OWS version of "constituent services".

        Honestly, I'm being flip but I support the movement. But I think you occupiers need to take a step back and look at yourselves for a second. You're setting up hierarchies and disenfranchising millions, not on purpose, I'm sure but it's happening nonetheless. You'll need to hear criticism.

        I've become re-radicalized. Thanks a lot you bunch of oligarchical fascist sons-of-bitches. But once again, I have no choice. Bring it the fuck on.

        by mdmslle on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 08:06:16 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  You're confusing the OWS protest movement (0+ / 0-)

          with something akin to a political party.

          People who want to be a part of the movement tend to be people who want to protest. Going to the GA's, participating in protests, puts you in a position to join the consensus process to have a voice about the protests.

          The people protesting have a right to create consensus about what the protest movement is about and how they will demonstrate their concerns.

          •  I'm not confusing anything. You're not listening. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            erush1345

            You aren't listening.

            I've become re-radicalized. Thanks a lot you bunch of oligarchical fascist sons-of-bitches. But once again, I have no choice. Bring it the fuck on.

            by mdmslle on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 09:09:50 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  And yes protesters have that right but they ought (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            erush1345

            not presume to or advance the notion, then, that they speak for the 99%. They speak and protest only for themselves.

            I've become re-radicalized. Thanks a lot you bunch of oligarchical fascist sons-of-bitches. But once again, I have no choice. Bring it the fuck on.

            by mdmslle on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 09:11:35 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Any voice (0+ / 0-)

              which wants to be heard, can join and participate, if that person wants to protest Wall Street. It is presumed that if they want to be part of the movement, they agree at least with that much of OWS.

              No one person or movement can speak for all. The occupy movement never claimed to speak for every individual within the 99%, that i am aware of. What they speak to are issues of exploitation of the 99% by the 1%. That is what they are protesting. Obviously, not all within the 99% understand or agree that they are being exploited. Thus, how can the OWS movement speak for their misinformed views? They speak for the 99% in the sense of standing up to power. But certainly many won't agree. They obviously won't be part of the movement until they come to a better understanding.

              I'm a little tired, and have some personal things going on, so I'm not at my best in responding. But this should be enough to convey my thinking on this.

              •  No, some voices CANNOT join and march. (4+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                ZhenRen, erush1345, kurt, evergreen2

                That's my point. If OWS is going to restrict itself to only those who "show up" physically this thing is doomed. Seriously. 100 million people can't physically "occupy" so you'd better be figuring out how to do this thing in a way that does disenfranchise average people. Not everyone has the luxury (yes, luxury) of being able to sleep in a park or spend an unknown amount of time hanging around at a GA hoping to get on stack.

                Sigh. I'm afraid that this movement is becoming crippled by its own dogma and inflexibility. What you've described is not only impossible but it doesn't take into consideration how to handle the type of growth that we in fact need if we are to at some point tackle the solutions necessary to the problems we protest. Activist to activist, I say, please don't fail at being self reflective. Im seeing a disturbing amount of that lately: accusations about "not understanding" or somehow that people asking questions "lack seriousness" or committment or a vision of how a True Democracy should work, etc. all this while also being told that unless we show up and are the ones in the "rain and cold" (which is the only way to be part of the movement) - your words there - we really don't have much other ability to have our voices heard. That's a huge flaw. But it's also dangerous because it risks allowing a select few who CAN sleep in a park to make lots of decisions about what may end up affecting my life. All I'm saying is check yourself. The road to hell is paved with good intentions.

                I've become re-radicalized. Thanks a lot you bunch of oligarchical fascist sons-of-bitches. But once again, I have no choice. Bring it the fuck on.

                by mdmslle on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 11:42:14 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  And btw you don't want me in the park or at a (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                ZhenRen

                march. I'm much less committed to non violence than would be useful at this early stage.

                You may have use for me eventually. I'm more a revolutionary than a protester. If this movement gets to a point where the system is about to fight for its life for real, you'll need me. And I'll be around.

                I've become re-radicalized. Thanks a lot you bunch of oligarchical fascist sons-of-bitches. But once again, I have no choice. Bring it the fuck on.

                by mdmslle on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 11:46:19 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

  •  Occupy is as much a local movement... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catesby, KalHermit, kurt

    ...as it is a national one. From city to city, while there are strong common threads, each city also has important local issues which have found their way into the GA discussion mix.

    Seems to me that there is no reason there can't be a DK-flavored local community Occupy, if for no other reason than to discuss issues that get raised in the meatspace Occupys.

    And it's an odd movement indeed when people start getting hung up on who is "official" and who is not.

    "We have so much time and so little to do. Strike that, reverse it." -- Willy Wonka

    by Huginn and Muninn on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 05:41:38 PM PST

  •  A conflict between missions (8+ / 0-)

    is the reason I agree with the main thrust of this diary.

    The mission of Daily Kos is to help elect more and better Democrats, while Occupy Wall Street addresses corporate economic injustice. Given that a number of congressional blue dog Democrats enable greater corporate power, I can see where these two messages would clash in a general election, at the very least.

    Guess who’s laughing while the world explodes / When we’re all crybabies who fight best among ourselves --- Jello Biafra

    by bsmechanic on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 05:42:49 PM PST

  •  The Daily Occupy is really taking over (6+ / 0-)

    the Rec list and activity on the front page of the website, regardless of whether "it" can speak for the movement.

    I changed by not changing at all, small town predicts my fate, perhaps that's what no one wants to see. -6.38, -4.15

    by James Allen on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 05:49:56 PM PST

    •  No problem with that (0+ / 0-)

      But let's not pretend that any consensus arrived at here reflects the OWS movement, because this site is an autocracy, and excludes people who might want to add their voices to the OWS consensus. That can't happen here by definition.

      •  OWS (0+ / 0-)

        should make demands.

        Make so many so often the MSM only has time to scream about them rather then paint OWS as fringe and violent etc.

        •  OWS is making demands (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          erush1345, kurt

          It is setting limits as to who may participate and how, which you can observe in this diary.

          •  Competely false (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            annan

            I'm merely pointing out that consensus, as practiced in OWS, is an illusion on DKOs. That's the long and short of it.

            My god, with so many people erecting strawman, I must really have touched a nerve.

            •  Disingenuous (0+ / 0-)

              If you want your movement to grow, you need to listen to the response your writing is provoking. It is up to you whether you learn from it or decide that almost everyone else is wrong. You are alienating people who want to help. You just are. If you don't care, that is an issue for you, and you will be making it an issue for OWS in the future.

              •  It is up to me (0+ / 0-)

                to determine whether criticisms are genuine or just the usual critics who will carp regardless of the manner in which they are answered. Get real.

                I poked a nerve here, and got the predictable response. OWS is a protest movement. That's how it began: IN a park, on the sidewalks, in the streets. They engage in civil disobedience. That is the nature of the protest. And that protest has been heard around the world.

                Most of the critics seem to ignore that accomplishment.

                It's a matter of showing up if you want to join. Pretty simple.

                Now, everyone seems to want to claim membership in OWS, and claim a right to make decisions on its behalf, despite unwillingness to actually go to the movement activities.  (Sheesh, I hardly include myself as a member, and I'm far more exposed to the movement than most on this site.) While there are all sorts of contributions that don't require physical presence (maintaining websites, funding, writing for OWS publications, etc.), it is the protests in the streets that have moved the message into mainstream view. And that message has been clear: Reform Wall Street, take away their power over our lives, rein them in.

                But when people point out that this is primarily a protest movement of the streets, they've accused of being exclusionary, as if saying that if the movement doesn't turn itself inside out on behalf of self absorbed DKos habitues (by allowing them to sit around deciding what the movement should or should not do, as armchair generals) it is snubbing potential supporters. LOL. Most of you wouldn't be supporters regardless of what OWS does.

                But people who think I'm excluding them by stating that on DKos any consensus as practiced by the OWS movement is flawed simply are (willfully?) misreading my diary. It is basic logic to assert real consensus isn't possible on a site that disallows certain forms of speech. Just basic logic. And it certainly doesn't impute that lack of obtaining real consensus excludes people. And i am certainly and obviously not telling people they can't opine on OWS. Opine away, I can't stop you anyway.

                But I stand by my words: DKos will never speak for OWS.

                Sorry, but I'm not the one who is disingenuous in this debate. Not buying it.

      •  I don't think anyone IS pretending (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ZhenRen

        The reality is that OCCUPY is evolving so fast that is truly a fluid moment in our time. Most of us are just here pushing progress and OWS is certainly that.

        48forEastAfrica - Donate to Oxfam

        by randallt on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 08:35:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Hmm. We are in the circular argument. No one (5+ / 0-)

    can speak for OWS b/c no one can speak for OWS. In the end there is no voice of OWS and everyone projects his/her ideas onto it.

  •  You're right. DK isn't a GA. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Richard Lyon, kurt

    It's better.

    We don't pretend that R0N P4U1 supporters have anything substantive to contribute to the conversation.

    We ban those who advocate any form of violence.

    Despite some around here, the site as a whole has a decidedly pragmatic viewpoint, that prioritizes effectiveness over ideology.

    We don't pretend that every voice has equal value and respect.

    Some voices—like those of P4U1ites and Black Bloc-ers—aren't worth listening to, and others, who have proven themselves time and again to be knowledgeable and wise—have contributions that are worth being taken with more weight than an ordinary user's.

    This isn't a GA. This is better than a GA.

    "When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist." --Dom Helder Camara, archbishop of Recife

    by JamesGG on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 06:25:50 PM PST

  •  Well how arrogant are you? (11+ / 0-)

    To assert that the only people that can get involved are those who have access to a major city?

    •  get ready for more of this. There are occupiers (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      erush1345, kurt

      who, 50 years from now, will be talking about how THEY were the "true activists" living through hell in the park for those of us too uncommitted to do it.

      There's a lot of back patting and chest puffing upping going on. Lots of self congratulation and pride. A lot of a desire for elevation and status. And the "hard core occupiers" will elevate themselves over those of us who "only" support the movement with food or funds or tweets. "it's not the same, man", they'll say. Even in this diary he references "those in the rain and cold... The only way to be part of the movement".

      Too many (although not all, let's be clear) are developing this mindset. It's insidious and plays itself out in real terms by ironically being heirarchial and by disenfranchising those who can't/don't live in the park.

      I've become re-radicalized. Thanks a lot you bunch of oligarchical fascist sons-of-bitches. But once again, I have no choice. Bring it the fuck on.

      by mdmslle on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 08:15:15 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  This is a protest movement (2+ / 0-)

      You're free to create an occupy movement in any small town near you, and friends I have did exactly that in their small Iowa town. Your constant insults are becoming trolling. Stop that. House rules.

  •  I call bullsh*t (14+ / 0-)

    Honestly, I'm getting a little annoyed at self-appointed arbiters using the "occupy" movement to exclude those of us in the 99% (or even the 1%) who genuinely want to work towards positive social and political change in this country, but who aren't doing it exactly the way you want us to.

    Look, we're fighting asymmetrical warfare here.

    On one side, there's an extremely well-funded corporate, political and militaristic elite who will do anything and everything to hold on to the status quo.

    On the other (our side), we have millions of disenfranchised and disillusioned citizens who generally agree on the problem, and even some of the solutions, but who don't have the resources to coordinate their efforts as efficiently as corporate interests.

    So I have to ask, considering what we're up against, why the f*ck would anyone want to exclude the only plentiful resource we have - informed citizens who want to help?

    •  This isn't about exclusion (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ZhenRen

      The problem is that this site is exclusionary, and that is why it can't be used to hold a proper GA.  There is nothing wrong with people on this site organizing actions and even organizing a GA, the problem is that using the comment sections as a GA has serious problems.  You are invited to the movement and you don't need to go to a GA to participate.

      There revolution will not be televised. But it will be blogged, a lot. Probably more so than is necessary.

      by AoT on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 07:43:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Amen Sister. Amen. n/t (0+ / 0-)
    •  Word. eom. (0+ / 0-)

      American Heritage Dictionary definition of fascism (1983): "...a system of government that exercises a dictatorship of the extreme right, typically through the merging of state and business leadership, together with belligerent nationalism."

      by KalHermit on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 09:48:01 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  "U don't speak 4 OWS!" - "No U don't speak 4 it!" (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    msblucow, bink, highacidity, Cedwyn, kurt

    This kind of meta-infighting scares me a lot more when it concerns OWS than when it's about dKos. Dkos is just a blog, OWS is much more important to me. My fear is that any attempt to impose some sort of nationally institutionalized leadership on OWS, or even just some formal framework of rules, could lead to fragmentation and flame out. People need to understand that OWS has got to be a movement of small local groups or individuals doing their own thing, but spontaneously acting together in perceived common cause.  Anybody can say "Hey, here's an idea, let's do X!" and anybody is free to follow them, but don't try to impose rules or leaders or spokespeople.  

    "Maybe there's only one revolution, since the beginning -- the good guys against the bad guys. Question is: Who are the good guys?" ("The Professionals," 1966; Bill Dolworth (Burt Lancaster) to Hans Ehrengard (Robert Ryan).

    by brainwave on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 06:42:15 PM PST

  •  My Guess Is That (11+ / 0-)

    People who are involved in the movement and people who are interested in it will continue to use Daily Kos to find each other and share their opinions about it, regardless of what this diarist says.

    This is the first time I've actually been exposed to a claimed OWS person who has expressed an interest in controlling the speech of others or putting up obstacles to participation in the movement hy anyone.

    I'm a bit puzzled by it.

    Oh, and stop being such a control freak.

    "I'll believe that corporations are people when I see Rick Perry execute one."

    by bink on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 06:43:26 PM PST

  •  All civil disobedience carries a price. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catesby, fou, erush1345, kurt
    On Daily Kos, there is no "civil disobedience" allowed without threat of removal.

    Otherwise it wouldn't mean much, would it?

    There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody. - Elizabeth Warren

    by Susan Grigsby on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 06:43:37 PM PST

    •  I agree (0+ / 0-)

      That is exactly right. And those who are willing to pay that price get to have a say in what they are protesting, how they will protest, and where they will occupy, and how they will occupy. The consensus process decides real issues for those who want to actually protest. This isn't a political party, it is a protest movement.

  •  I think this is a silly issue. This whole idea of (6+ / 0-)

    OWS being a leaderless movement is fantasy.

    You can't have any of "society," be it a city, a group, or a protest movement that's completely leaderless.

    I've been to several Occupy encampments, including San Diego, San Francisco, Oakland, UC Berkeley, San Jose, and others... If one observes the interactions during GAs, and break-out meetings, the careful observant can pick out the "Alpha" types (the "leaders" or "facilitators) within five minutes.

    Much silly attention is given by some about this debate regarding OWS being a leaderless movement, and my concern is that as anything else, some people can take the eye off the prize and become obsess with enforcing the "leaderless" meme (or ethos) to the point that it becomes a dogma.

    My take is that some people, seeing how all our institutions have been totally corrupted are leery of the typical hierarchical structures.

    IMHO (and of course, expressing my opinion as an individual), what the movement needs is to gain strength, staying-power, so it can get to the point where it's able to exert enough pressure on the corrupt power structures so it can effect actual, meaningful change.

    We are far, far from that... To the contrary, the corrupt power structure continues with their plans to push down on the population and press its fascist boot on our neck with even more gusto.

    Regardless of how it happens, for OWS to become more powerful, it will eventually have to mature into a more organized and focused movement with very clear short-, mid-, and long-term strategies.

    In the meantime, instead of focusing on silly dogma about "leaderless" movements, the focus should be on whether someone's contribution is helpful to the movement, whether the contribution is "Occupying" and attending the GAs, or donations (money, goods, services), or support from high-profile people (media, activists, business, artists), or intellectual support.

    Denigrating this whole site, or making sweeping generalizations about people here does not help the cause.

    For example, many times I've expressed my believe that both, the Democratic and Republican party establishment are corrupt to the core... I've written many diaries about it.  And yes, occasionally self-appointed "Kos Police" try to shut down debate and "threaten" me with being "banned," but I always find those threats laughable... I'm still here.

    To tell you the truth, given how controversial my writing can be (because I usually write as a polemicist who pushes the envelope with the objective to push people to think outside the box), I really don't feel I've been restricted in any meaningful way here at Daily Kos.

    •  You know, I kept trying to think of (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ray Pensador, mdmslle, kurt

      examples where this had actually been a problem here on this site. I couldn't, but thought maybe I was just unaware of them.

      Otherwise, I think your post is incredibly well-stated and articulates my complex views well. And yes, you write a lot of controversial stuff. I think this site is pretty supportive of OWS thought; it's published tons right on the FP.

      •  I think the point (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        kurt

        is deeper than the simple pragmatic observation that you have never felt restricted. I have never felt restricted, either. In fact, I once had to ask someone to troll rate me so I could see what it looked like!

        The point is that someone could be restricted and it would be complicated to be sure nobody ever was restricted. I think this is one of the better places to have this discussion precisely because the DKOS admin will probably let the discussion occur! If OWS is going to grow (and it must if it is to be effective), it will have to expand into private spaces. This discussion identifies that problem and invites examination of the principles involved.

        Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities. Truth isn't.
        Mark Twain

        by phaktor on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 11:47:48 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  You have not been restricted, but you don't (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      annan

      speak for all.

      The mere fact that there is a site rule about supporting the democratic party, and electing more democrats, tends to mean any consensus achieved must be part of those goals, which are not part of the goals expressed by OWS thus far.

      Thus, it would not be true consensus, since any consensus bound by exogenous rules isn't consensus.  And since the site attracts people interested in those goals, then the OWS movement as expressed on DKos would be restricted to such members on this site, and limited in this way which in pubic parks isn't an issue.

  •  What is the Democratic Party exactly? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT, Situational Lefty

    Yeah, I don't know either.

  •  I would also say that it can't be done on a blog (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BigAlinWashSt, annan, jayden

    because there is no mechanism for the give and take required to achieve a consensus.  People can say what they want, and then abandon it, or - as more often happens - stick with it even when it should have been discarded.  This is because a blog does not generate the same environment that being with people, which requires justification and group awareness.  

    Occupy the voting Booth!

    by anonevent on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 06:46:56 PM PST

  •  Eyeroll. One day the world will be divided into (10+ / 0-)

    people who "slept in the rain and cold" and those who didn't, I guess. And those of us who didn't will be relegated to the land of STFU in deference to the "real activists".

    Great.

    Carry on.

    Im not in the park. I have no right to make a discussion about any of what I think ought to be happening. Gotcha. 99% except when it's not. I'll wait for you folks to tell me what's next. Because that's my definition of democracy.

    I've become re-radicalized. Thanks a lot you bunch of oligarchical fascist sons-of-bitches. But once again, I have no choice. Bring it the fuck on.

    by mdmslle on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 07:09:06 PM PST

    •  No one in the occupy movement (0+ / 0-)

      binds anything that you do. The consensus process deals with the protest movement, why they are protesting, how they protest, and no more.

      You are free to get people together and make any statement that you like, but you can't speak for the movement any more than I can, unless you engage in the process. That is entirely fair.

      •  Except to declare us outsiders (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mdmslle
        •  Not at all (0+ / 0-)

          I barely include myself as a member. One is an insider to the degree that he or she participates.

          All politics are local. Those who choose to be part of a local movement are self-declaring themselves to be part of the movement. Those who don't, are making that choice as well. Thus, nothing that I declare matters.

          For example, I can't tell people at UC Davis what to do or think about their protests, since I'm not there. They hold meetings, make decisions about what they're about and what they plan to do. Since their movement is local, the decisions are local. This is a participatory movement.

          I think what is occurring here at DKos is a bunch of old farts acting as armchair generals want to poke away and grumble, and dictate to the movement how to proceed, and when they learn that the consensus process requires actual presence at a meeting they scream about being excluded.

      •  The process is the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        evergreen2

        only thing that can speak for the movement! Any other statements by anybody are simply opinions. That does not mean opinions don't matter. Some opinions are good -- even if they are not "official." To think they are not simply reflects the corporate authoritarianism we are all fighting to be free of.

        I think one misunderstanding here is that some people on the site are doing the very things that OWS seeks to be free of. One does not have to have authority to be important or valuable. Personal power and social status is not the goal of all human existence. There could be an OWS group on DKOS who clearly admit that they are not a real or "official" OWS group, and openly recognize and advertise the reasons they are not. One person made an analogy to AA. What they did not mention is that AA has groups, but it also has "clubs." Clubs involve private property and cannot claim to be real AA groups (because they are entangled with the interests of the private property owners). The fact that a group of people dedicated to the movement cannot hold a genuine GA does not mean the people cannot be valuable. Clubs play a very important role in AA.

        These kinds of arguments over social status are the very status quo which OWS opposes, if I understand it correctly.

        In some of the comments, you can see people are feeling excluded. That is the death knell for a movement striving to grow. One thing I would find very helpful from the GAs in various places is some way to help people overcome the sort of "identity crisis" being expressed by those commenting here. It would be helpful if there were ways to "export" the OWS identity, to make people feel as if they are a genuine part of the movement, to give them some form of symbolic activity to engage in to show their membership and their commitment, and to make them understand they are every bit as important, if not more so, than the people on the front lines in the rain.

        Granted, the fundamental principles are important and it is important to understand them. Those principles are the very essence of the movement. Once people understand that, and once they understand the value of those principles, they will be happy to work within it. We have had nearly four decades of corporate authoritarianism in this country, and many people find it hard to think in terms of any form of social activity which is not organized under authoritarian principles. Many (comically) even say it is "impossible" to have a "leaderless movement." That is because they have never seen it, and everything in our corporate controlled world for the last few decades has encouraged people to believe authoritarianism is the only form of social organization possible. They mistake true public service for "leadership" or "power." They mistakenly believe public servants must be endowed with power, that leaders are more important than followers, that "officials" are more important than "members", that "staff" are more important than "customers." This hierarchy of human value is reflected in every crack and crevice of our society. It is the foundation -- the very infrastructure -- of the ideology that is destroying us. All we have to do is stop thinking that way, and half the battle is won.

        Beginning to break the chains which bind our thought is the most important thing right now. There is no reason this discussion must be cast as an adversarial argument. There does not have to be a winner, and everyone can be right. The corporate culture has bent our mental process to cast everything as a contest in which the winner takes the prize. Then the winner is envisioned to proceed to the semi-finals, and the winner of the semi-finals to the finals, up until you get to the 1%. We are trained like fighting dogs or roosters to limit the power of ourselves. We must stop playing their game.

        Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities. Truth isn't.
        Mark Twain

        by phaktor on Mon Nov 28, 2011 at 12:38:20 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  You're misunderstanding my intent, I think (0+ / 0-)

          My point is that this site is by nature authoritarian, and thus any "consensus" under the authoritarian nature of the site will not be a true consensus. Other than that, I don't care what people do here. I'm sure they will continue to do as they please, within the site restrictions. But the true OWS movement does not allow itself to be curtailed in terms of consensus by exogenous factors.

          The people here who feel excluded have completely misunderstood my diary, and probably the movement itself.

          They are no more excluded than I am. And, recognizing some of the names, some of the people complaining would be finding some way to attack the OWS movement no matter what the topic.

          All is not what it seems on DKos.

          But you make some good points.

          •  Obviously (0+ / 0-)

            it is not:

            All is not what it seems on DKos.

            And never can be in such a forum. There are some serious people, though, and some good ideas.

            Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities. Truth isn't.
            Mark Twain

            by phaktor on Mon Nov 28, 2011 at 05:53:48 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  except that you know (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cedwyn, erush1345

    Zuccotti Park  IS a privately owned property. Get your act together.

    'This is one of the reasons the OWS movement goes to PUBLIC parks: ..."
    •  Indeed it is, which is why they were evicted (0+ / 0-)

      Everything is owned. Free speech thus is very limited in our country. When nearly every venue is controlled by some authority, do we really have a right to assemble and to engage in free speech?

      But no one was going through the park and eliminating some while allowing others to stay, or setting up rules about what could be discussed or not vis-a-vis politics, as occurs here on DKos.

  •  Alcoholics Anonymous (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fou, JClarkPDX, annan

    has functioned extremely effectively as a leaderless consensus with broad local autonomy for 70+ years.  

    I'm not saying that OWS should therefore all drink mouthwash till they blackout etc, but the model works and I am glad that the diary points out that DKos isn't an appropriate vehicle for this movement.

    Remember to kick it over.

    by sprogga on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 07:23:29 PM PST

  •  Rec list! Yay! (0+ / 0-)

    Hopefully more occupiers will agree with your argument than disagree.  I'd love for the rec list to return to some semblance of sanity.

  •  The reading here is fabulous (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annan, kurt

    I feel I'm evolving or something. This is a great example of why I'm here.

    48forEastAfrica - Donate to Oxfam

    by randallt on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 08:26:18 PM PST

  •  Using your body as a political statement (7+ / 0-)

    Is the core of civil disobedience and what drove these young people to evolve away from what they called "Clicktivism" into occupation.

    So, as well meaning as it may be, I don't think OWS can, or should be reduced to going back to a Clicktivism imitation on this or any blog. I think a big feature is physical, face to face participation.

    It is a part of the humanist quality of the movement. Sharing a voice, physically. And a cookie if you can share the time and expense to bring one.

    0: Number of Wall Street bankers arrested over crash of 2008. 4619: Number of Americans arrested protesting Wall Street's fraudulent practices 11/21/2011

    by Scott Wooledge on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 08:36:56 PM PST

  •  It seems, if the (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ZhenRen

    group on this site were to actually address the criticisms and find some way to meet the requirements, it would be a good exercise in demonstrating how the movement could expand into private spaces and make use of resources which otherwise would not be available. It would be complicated, but it might could be done.

    Fiction is obliged to stick to possibilities. Truth isn't.
    Mark Twain

    by phaktor on Sun Nov 27, 2011 at 11:25:28 PM PST

  •  thanks - well written and better (0+ / 0-)

    addresses the issue than my diary did.

    although, both sides of issues WERE talking tonite over in the diary i posted - and it was informative and civil (with one or two late comers who felt the need to try to stoke a fire - fortunately, it didn't work).

    Is GlowNZ back yet?

    by edrie on Mon Nov 28, 2011 at 12:34:48 AM PST

  •  Concensus Decision Making Process v. concensus (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Oh Mary Oh

    Perhaps one of the problems we're having communicating on this diary has to do with the fact that there is a formal Concensus Decision Making Process (a formal model of decision making) and then there is our shared understanding of the word concensus.

    The model itself is very specific although there are variations. The Wikipedia entry is long and it does a pretty good job describing the historical foundation of the process as well as various methods that are used within the Consensus decision-making model:

    Consensus decision making is also an alternative to “top-down” decision making, commonly practiced in hierarchical groups. Top-down decision making occurs when leaders of a group make decisions in a way that does not include the participation of all interested stakeholders. The leaders may (or may not) gather input, but they do not open the deliberation process to the whole group. Proposals are not collaboratively developed, and full agreement is not a primary objective. Critics of top-down decision making believe the process fosters incidence of either complacency or rebellion among disempowered group members. Additionally, the resulting decisions may overlook important concerns of those directly affected. Poor group relationship dynamics and decision implementation problems may result.

    Consensus decision making attempts to address the problems of both Robert’s Rules of Order and top-down models.

    As a professional facilitator I use variations of the consensus model all the time and most of you would recognize the process. I applaud OWS attempting to use this model although I know how tedious it can be for both participants and facilitators.

    "Let us not look back to the past with anger, nor towards the future with fear, but look around with awareness." James Thurber

    by annan on Mon Nov 28, 2011 at 06:17:02 AM PST

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