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We’re Not Back! We Never Left!

10:07 pm in Uncategorized by salembard

Take Charge and Tell the Occupy Story

Occupy Writers and Media Coordinators Organize and Use all Aspects of Modern Media to Get the Occupy Story Out.

How we write for journals and blogs, publish articles and commentaries, communicate with media editors, use social media, all combine to make the Occupy story available to our audiences. When we work together to inform the ninety-nine percent of how their needs and conditions affect their  lives and those of their friends, family, and neighbors, we help fashion a broad message worthy of so broad an audience. Below are some points I covered on May 9 in a Fire Dog Lake webinar.

Blogging  from the  Occupiers  Perspective

“We are the 99 Percent” defines our point of view a Occupiers. We may also speak directly to important allies and affinity groups representing specific approaches, solutions, and proposals, but we need also remember to address the full audience to remain true to the ninety-nine percent audience we seek to empower.

1. A general point of view, POV, looks to broad agreement on core concepts, ideals, solutions, rather than on narrow proposals.For instance, health care is a basic human need, but we lack consensus about any single solution. So, we can achieve consensus on the goal, empower a process for decision making, and then advocate for our specific ideas to bring health and better life to our people.

2. A specific point of view focuses on affinity-group proposals. These need not have broad consensus, but serve to build relations with key allies and affinity groups.Consider health care again: Some groups may favor a mix of private and public approaches such as medicare and private plans, others favor more public options, and still others favor single-payer systems. Within Occupy study groups may come together to advocate proposals without common agreement either within the local Occupy group or nationally among the broad range of people.
In short, remember to address and acknowledge the ninety-nine percent, but allow narrower groups to focus on specific proposals as we build better decision-making into our process.

Regarding consensus. Always look to the purpose or “statement of purpose, mission statement, etc. for defining reasons why your group exists. The Mission Statement or statement of Purpose identifies a group’s legitimate concerns. Some people violate those basic conditions; some have no opinion, so stand aside automatically. What is left determines how much consensus exists. Then the assembly may clarify questions so the proposals are understood and resolve legitimate concerns.

Focus on purpose for both general and specific approaches to communications and media. Apply the idea of consensus building when you write or address your audiences. This helps the Occupy writer or speaker to remember responsibilities to the broader movement serve our purposes, but our own individual preferences may not.

How to tell your story

Relate Your Actions to Your Audience

Blog to the  PublicTake responsibility for each and every word you use. this does not mean you have any so-called correct reasons for your choices, but you do have reasons behind them. Be aware of your audience, and communicate to them in ways they can appreciate and understand. Be respectful, listen and respond.reach out. Know when to inform and when to write a “convincer. When writing to inform, summarize all your points at the onset, but when persuading or convincing, hold back” important points for use to achieve maximum effect as the argument develops.

Blog to  Elected and other public  Officials and  Journalists to Help Them Understand Our Message.

Focus on core principles,See “What is Occupy”I will be posting to Demotix, my OP ED piece, less than 400 words, “the Seven Habits of Highly effective Citizen Occupiers” and also, a longer version as a article — news analysis. (more than 800 words).

These Seven Habits are:consensus, nonviolence, decentralization, fairness, responsibility, freedom, and sustainability. When speaking to anyone, use these or similar points to retain a 99-percent POV. It works very well when speaking to someone of different political orientations.

Use Online Resources to Publish About Occupy and the Occupy Story.

Use FDL, firedoglake, to post journal articles, pictures, and communicate with others interested in the Occupy

Register with to sell articles and images about Occupy. Use their site for information.

Use to post your articles, images, and blog entries for people to read. In addition, Demotix will represent their writers and photographers to get them published by alternative and mainstream media.

FDL offers blog space with opportunities to network and reach out to potentially large audiencesAlternet requires writing samples and pays for articles, even gives assignments.
Demotix stories and images you post. Post 10 and get affiliation and press ID.

Each of these have specific uses and advantages.

Use Social Media To Amplify Your Message

When using a Facebook page read their use policies and issues. Facebook claims copyright, privileges on anything stored on their servers as a condition of use. While the account holder may have rights to their own materials, so does Facebook. So, caution should be exercised when using free services online. Always check terms and conditions of use for any content provider. Facebook now tries to restrict any contacts to those the user knows outside of Facebook. This means if you want to contact someone or request friendship, you should already know them. Simply contacting them outside of Facebook satisfies this condition. Also,  if you work for the same organization, this also seems to satisfy this condition of use on Facebook. Best Ways to Share information Try listing your Occupy among your projects or employers.

Also consider asking common friends for introductions to those you do not already know outside of Facebook, and never click on the response to a Facebook query if you know the person who sent you a friend request. When you do send a friend request, also consider messaging the person to introduce yourself. Sending e-mail outside of Facebook is preferable. Of course, anyone is free to ignore these privacy violations by Facebook as they seek to restrain use of their site to lower their operating expenses.

Make full use of messages, friends, notes,status updates, and other user interactions

Facebook groups are now intended for small groups of people. They allow “docs” or documents to be posted containing useful information. Photo albums may not be created for Facebook groups. Once again, remember, Facebook will claim copyright rights to anything posted on their site. also use event pages.

When you host a Facebook page, read through the page management options to set up how the page should be configured and administered.
You as a user, a group or page administrator, Admin, may create event pages. An advantage to page administration is the larger number of people you may invite to an event in a message. Pages you jointly administer with others, such as your state or local Occupy pages allow any page dam, administrator, to act as an admin for any event pages created for that page. This can make event announcements easier to organize and manage.

Page owners may add event pages, photos, photo albums, videos, links, and other special features to both shared and personal pages.
It also appears more people may be invited at any one time to a page’s event page than to a Facebook group’s event page. So, consider migrating your groups over to page formats in Facebook if you plan to use it to coordinate among larger numbers of people.
When you move around Facebook, also remember to click Share and select pages you admin or groups you belong to and post useful notices and resources to them along with any specific comments that seem appropriate. These will still show up on your Wall as recent actions, although check your profile to see if they contain all the information you want to be on your own Wall.

Two Other Valuable Resources

Occupy groups should also make use of for 140-character text messages. These provide fast messaging for events, alerts, and general information. Even major news sources regularly post news using twitter feeds. Assigning one or more people to your twitter account can significantly add to your Occupy’s presence on the Web. These messages are ideal for people who use smart phones and other small-mobile devices to monitor online information.

Another useful place for building networks is, particularly for volunteer, professional, and career relationships.

Coordinating Media: Getting the message out across multiple Occupations

Be conscious of broad-ranging contacts, friends, and geography. Facebook allows you to create lists of friends according to any criteria you find useful. These may include political, social, or cultural interests, languages, or geography.

Occupy Oregon Media Group

Time has come to take charge of the Occupy message. This requires Occupy developing its own media volunteers to cover the full range of writing image-capture, and production needs. The best way to bring all these necessary skills together usually requires a regional approach. so develop regional and state media groups to marshal your often considerable human resources and begin to take charge of presenting the Occupy message to your communities. Most news outlets lack sufficient employees to quickly gather and present the flood of incoming news events and information, so prepare digests of information along with media alerts, bulletins, and press releases to make their jobs easier and empower the Occupy message.

In January at the first state-wide General Assembly held near our state capitol, two working groups began to emerge: General Assembly and Media. While we are slowly developing others, in Oregon, these two receive most of the organizational energy and focus. For information about “The Oregon Model” see the blog in Firedoglake at:

The Occupy Oregon Media Group, OOMG, is developing a number of working teams of volunteers within Occupy Oregon, including: artists, artisans, craftspeople, journalists, av work, communications & media training. The Media Outreach Team develops personal connections and relationships with alternative and mainstream media. OOMG also has a growing local network of Occupy correspondents gathering information about local groups, actions, and events. The information is regularly featured in briefings for The Media consortium, Public Radio, Free Speech TV, and the Associated Press.

When contacting media representatives, remember to listen, digest, deliver easy-to-absorb and use information. Local newspapers, community radio, and local-access stations require specific focus to meet their needs. A small amount of focus by Occupy groups opens doors even to news outlets initially skeptical of Occupy.

When developing teams of writers, editors, photographers, videographers, and media volunteers, recruit both experienced people and those new and needing training in journalism, communications, media, and IT. Reach out to People In different Areas around your state and communities. Broaden you coalitions as much as possible, but still allow affinity groups to develop their own specific proposals. “We are the ninety-nine percent” should be the great-unifying principle, not merely a chant for public consumption. Recently one of of our Occupy Oregon organizers was elected co-president for the Klamath County League of women Voters. In this conservative, rural, Oregon county, the trust in Occupy’s message of broad appeal is being well tested.

Use Telecommunications Media to Stay Connected and Informed!
There are several important tools available for increasing interoccupation communications and keeping informed about issues and events within the Occupy movement world wide and in the United States. These tools make it easy and inexpensive to keep in touch and network with others throughout the United States and beyond.

Telecommunications Conferences Form the Backbone for Occupy communications

Participate in Web conferences, FDL “Go to Meeting Webinars”. Mumble Web conferences, with audio-visual or chat modes available, used by Pan Assemblies internationally,. The software is a free download and quite popular in Europe, but also used around the United States, i.e. OWS, and Occupy Wisconsin. “Mumble” calls, audio only.

Finally, for now at least, remember to take advantage of basic tools like Google Voice and Skype for audio and video communications. These can turn your computer into a personal communications system for domestic and international audio and video calls. Google Voice may be used with conferences to save on telephone charges. It is particularly useful for interoccupy calls from international callers.

We’re Not Back! We Never Left!

3:48 pm in Uncategorized by salembard

Occupy the State

A Review of the Oregon Model for State-Wide, Local, Occupy Groups.


Responding to needs to develop effective lines of communications to serve Occupy groups in Oregon and to develop better contact with mainstream and alternative news media, in true progressive tradition, Oregon is developing models for consensus and team work through a network of state-wide working groups. Together, they form Occupy Oregon.


Mindful of decisions not to evolve hierarchical structures, Occupy Oregon was established following our first State general assembly in Jan 2012 as a local-Occupy group. Volunteers work together throughout the state to coordinate information and promote common goals. Occupy Oregon serves rather than directs or controls our local-Occupy groups. Thus, it is just another local group.


Occupy Oregon coordinates information and resources to serve needs as requested by local groups  or proposes common practices in Oregon. The local GAs remain entirely independent, except they may join together in consensus to redefine what Occupy Oregon is. So, for these reasons, Occupy Oregon is a service organization for the Occupy movement in Oregon.


We currently have two active working groups and four proposed groups.

Active working groups are:

Occupy Oregon Media Group, OOMG.

Occupy Oregon General Assembly Group, OOGAG


The Occupy Oregon Media Group has developed close working relationships with the OWS IT team, the International Councils of London and Madrid, and other Occupy groups throughout the United States. It also works directly with the Media Consortium, Free Speech TV, one prominent, national, television commentator, the Associated Press, Oregon Public Broadcasting, and various local news outlets. OOMG helps provide a clear view of the Occupy story to these alternative and mainstream news providers.


The Occupy Oregon General Assembly Group, founded in October 2012, continues to work with the developing National General Assembly and various state assemblies on common projects such as and an Article V convention to force amendments to the United States Constitution.


Proposed working groups are:


Occupy  Oregon Finance Group, OOFG.

Occupy Oregon Health and Safety Group.

Occupy Oregon Solutions and Political Action Group.

Occupy Oregon Supply and Transportation Group.



The working teams of Occupy Oregon’s working groups do the real work. These teams focused on team work and the type of work, while groups allow broader means for coordinating information about what should be or is being done.


Current working groups and working teams for Media and for GA include the following. When necessary, teams may also focus on specific functions through standing or special committees. Standing committees work on long-term issues and needs, while special committees exist only for a limited amount of time or until specific goals are achieved.


Occupy Oregon Media Group

Editorial Team–coordinates OOMG efforts. It brings together each team leader, the GA liaison, and regional editors in the correspondents network.

Arts and Craft Team–coordinates communication among artists, artisans, and craftspeople in the state in support of various actions and projects.

Audio-Visual Team–produces audio

Communications and Media Training Team.

Internet Technology Team.

–Standing Committee: IT Support.

–Standing Committee: Web Site Design.

InterOccupy Communications Team.

Media Outreach Team.

—-Standing Committee: Correspondents Network.;, consisting of a network of regional editors, special and local correspondents.


General Assembly Group

Archives and Records Team

Meeting Planning Team.

National GA Team.

Spokes Council Team.



The teams listed above are still in the process of forming. Other working groups and their constituent teams will follow as soon as the Media and General Assembly groups have developed more.


Liberal v Conservative? How About Progressive v Libertarian?

12:13 am in Uncategorized by salembard

Political space offers us a three-dimensional viewpoint of political life., breaking down simple linear distinctions of conservative and liberal. It even goes beyond the political flatland described by economic and social political thought..
Traditional conservatives, neo-conservatives, isolationists, and internationalists, allclaim the pure staff of contemporary conservatism. Recently, another player has entered the stage, the Libertarian, also claiming the mantle of the true conservative.
Not to be outdone, and uncertain of how people might respond to the label “liberal,” we often hear the word “progressive” substituted as a convenient mask for a timid left in the new century.
today, moderate views position political leaders between two warring factions, right versus left. Conservatives increasingly demand rigid adherence to clearly described conservative values for economic and social beliefs.
Some social liberals do accept more moderate or even conservative-economic ideas. Will the same inflexibility afflict liberals as has become the custom among social conservatives?
What do the words mean: liberal and progressive, conservative and libertarian? Might the new competition within our political vocabulary suggest new trends worth investigating? If so, then, I propose examining a different axis, a libertarian-progressive dichotomy.
Let’s substitute separate axes for economic and social ideas with a single conservative-liberal one. Then a new libertarian-progressive axis can reshape our assumptions of political space.
Libertarians, in general believe less government is best. Economic policies should be left open to pure market forces.  For the past two generations, Libertarians have even had their own political party, much as the progressives had an active Progressive Party during the first three decades of the twentieth century.
We can glimpse the essence of these two ideals by examining the core motivations driving their political beliefs.
progressives  rose to prominence slowly after the election of 1876, when the last “radical” Republican president, Rutherford B Hayes, managed to negotiate a successful Supreme Court fight to overcome Democrat Samuel tildens lead in the popular vote. Yes, Florida again.
The result was a party-line vote to resolve Electoral College votes by the Supreme Court after the Democratic Chief Justice died and was replaced by a Republican. In the great compromise, Hayes won and the Republicans agreed to end Reconstruction.
Years later, in 1901, after Pres William McKinley was assassinated, Vice President Theodore Roosevelt, TR, was sworn in as the new president. He became our first progressive president. By 1906, progressives began coming together as a distinct political movement.
then in 1912, Roosevelt, sharply critical of his hand-picked successor, Robert H Taft, ran against him as a Progressive for another term in a divisive three-way race against Taft and Democrat Woodrow Wilson. Wilson won, Roosevelt came in second, and the incumbent, Taft finished in third place.
Progressives in 1912 and again in 1916, at their party convention debated over how strong a national defense should be and how to regulate corporations some viewed as acting responsibly. However,, overall, they wanted responsible, efficient, transparent government, social and economic justice for all Americans, and careful monitoring on the size and scope of both government and corporate elites.
Libertarians stem from a long American tradition of moving outside of restrictive rules, be they imposed by private or government elites. They continued the traditions of individual freedom and responsibility as ethical guidelines for people to live by.
Whereas conservatives usually support strong government institutions on some level, ranging from local to state to national, libertarians believe in minimal government at all levels.
I suggest, just as the conservative-liberal divide represents only an American political spectrum, contrasts between libertarians and progressives may serve to describe differing views of restraining the size of government and private sector elites.
A three-dimensional view of political space then, may involve the following:X Axis. Conservative-Liberal.Y Axis. Libertarian-Progressive.Z Axis. Environmental Axis, ranging from Strong private property rights on the right to strong-environmental regulations and individual stewardship on the left.
Finally, using political space, rather than a linear or flat-plane political spectrum breaks up our three-dimensional space into many varieties. Doing this disempowers easy polarization, encourages alliances, compromise, and allows for differences to assert themselves as advantages in a cooperative, decision, making process.
Participants in the Occupy movement in the United States look for ways to encourage broad ideals and empower a political process for all Americans. embracing the ideas of political space supports our process. It encourages the new thinking necessary to re-empower “We the People.”

Addicted? Time to Leave the Haze Behind for the Freedom of political Space

11:45 pm in Uncategorized by salembard

Just why should it matter how we describe our personal politics? After all, the liberal-conservative division seems to satisfy most people,. Or, is the satisfaction merely an induced haze produced by managers of public opinion?
Freeing ourselves from manipulation by elites depends on how we define ourselves. It depends on how we associate with others and organize our opinions. When the easy way restricts public opinion to simplistic ideas, we surrender our freedom to learn, to understand, and decide for ourselves. So, let’s take a new look at how we define our thoughts and express ourselves in our democracy.
In the first commentary of this series, I introduced the idea of political space to open up civic dialogue. When we choose to describe the range of possible points of view as social, economic, and environmental, each with liberal and conservative positions, eight distinct regions emerge.
Imagine a cube., with up-down, right-left, and forward-backward, or X,Y, and Z lines in space creating a three-dimensional area. We live in a world with three dimensions, now lets make a break for our minds to live in 3-D also.
So, if we begin with liberal and conservative ideas about social, economic, and environmental arenas. Four areas are on the right side, call them conservative. Do the same for the left or liberal side. We can draw each of these three directions as a line divided according to how liberal or conservative a position is.
Now, include moderate points of view, and the eight regions grow to 64 areas. Extend each of the three lines, add ULTRA at the edges, and the eight regions increase to 216 specific types of political identity.
Woah! Here we should slow down. Take a look. Decide when to just keep it simple and when to encourage diversity. usually, “eight is enough!”
It certainly helps to use the eight basic regions of our freedom to occupy space in order to provide broad identities. Sometimes, simple is good. However, as real people, life is not as simple as this. Sometimes, the full range of free thinking empowers each of the eight regions to employ three segments on each axis– moderate, conservative or liberal, and ultra-conservative or ultra-liberal.
For instance, are you a social conservative, an economic moderate, and environmentally moderate? When we begin to think about political space, our world becomes more familiar. We begin by stepping out of line, climbing up, diving down, stepping to the right or left, and moving forward or pausing to step back. We look around at others and begin to feel freedom and experience open space for the first time.
Others may feel comfortable standing in line for opinions to be prepared for them like political-junk food. They breathe deep the airs of pure ideology carefully prepared for them, inhaling the fumes of some popular-political narcotic. Ah, enjoy the haze, and ignore that man behind the curtain, Dorothy.
But, as we wake up and discover we are citizens in what we hope to be a free country. Free people do not elect to submit to prepackaged ideas designed to support some small group of elites. It matters not if they call themselves conservative or liberal, right or left, progressive or libertarian. A free people need space to breathe and to run and live.
Political space offers diversity in how we think of ourselves as citizens with opinions and real lives. Try it out. Toss away those old labels and begin to think and live in a 3-D world. Take a breath. Let the haze clear away. Now, tell me how free people think!

Can the Pundits Give Us Some Political Space?

12:03 am in Uncategorized by salembard

For years conventional wisdom crammed the mass of political opinion into a narrow range, linear, and absolutely polarizing. At its worst we must live on a narrow one-way street called Liberal-Conservative Way. Sometimes we may even enter into the mystical realm of flatland, where conservative and liberal values expand to fill social and economic axes, like X and Y from high school algebra.
And, as so often the case, conventional wisdom merely serves to describe current limitations imposed on creative expression. Today, I hope to join others who have departed from linear confinements and even leap beyond the political flatland we have been sentenced to. Today, I say, “Can the pundits give us some political space?”
I am not proposing anything new, merely adding the earth as our third or Z axis, an environmental or ecological axis. Simple, yes, but revolutionary. Political space defines a three-dimensional world where the major arenas of thought and life can find their own levels and expressions.
It delivers us not two realms of thought as linear-thinking pundits direct, nor four as economic and social values describe our places. Political space opens a world where three-dimensional people live real lives with at least eight distinct regions to explore. Allow for moderate positions and the number of places within political space grows even more!
Those who choose rigid consistency where others confine them to absolute ideology may continue to seek their two portions of political space and yield the rest of us room to mix about and explore our new sense of freedom. We can walk through a world where life resembles our own world. Sure, it is a lot more varied. The relationships offer more diversity. That, dear reader, is the price of freedom.
So, for the pundits of conventional wisdom, sincere thanks for demonstrating consistent values, but after all, time for a free people to say, “Give us our political