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Very rough notes on

"What Could be the Salt for the Movement?"

Jane- NYC- on last call. Worked with Ben before on World Cafe. Big dialogue person and have been for many years. Question: How can we be effective in some way? A lot of movement to move money to credit unions. It's a crucial question, we start behaving differently. We're all caught up in a pattern.

Andrew- Connecticut. Met Ben before. Want to stay involved as much as possible. Glad to hear. Up against global powers.
Raffi- facilitator.

Question of “What to do in a situation that would be effective?” distressed – instead of whine and complain-- how to be effective without being violent and without being angry.

What are we willing to change in terms of our behavior that will reflect a totally way of being in this world?

We are all participating in this system- some, more than others. I'm a dyed-in-the-wool environmentalist-- don't throw away anything. If could get whole world to do that. Bottled water is a scam. Those kinds of movements can begin to make some changes. Some changes would lead to people losing jobs.

Andrew- What changes and behavior-- also social and human rights-- need to be addressed. Global system-- Restoration-- going to ecosystems-- while providing new livelihoods for new unemployed-- without being connected to …

Raffi – placemaking, disconnect from dollar, not pay taxes- create local currencies. assumption that we need to have a Salt...perhaps the end run is to just create the new?

Andrew- increasing, multiplying local production.

Jane- What will make a difference here? Everytime I think about some action-- most people today have very few skills- can't survive. Can't grow food. Can't take care of normal things to life. Can't repair things. We really can't survive. Without something, we're lost. Everyone's specialized, we've created a trap for ourselves. Learning how to take care of ourselves. Requires being a lot more connected as a community. Most of us unwilling to do that. We've been spoiled. Pick up and order it. It's tough to find something that a large number of people to make a change in our own behavior. You can't learn something overnight. Nobody's really dealing with this on a very practical down-to-earth level We're all at a level of frustration. What it's going to take is a whole other story. There ought to be more conversations about what change requires.

I have to change my behavior. What am I willing to let go of? What are you willing to let go of?

Andrew- when say no skills, for the salt question- local resilience is it.

What are people willing to give up for themselves. Some may not be able to give up much.
Jane- NYC- on last call. Worked with Ben before on World Cafe. Big dialogue person and have been for many years. Question: How can we be effective in some way? A lot of movement to move money to credit unions. It's a crucial question, we start behaving differently. We're all caught up in a pattern.

Andrew- Connecticut. Met Ben before. Want to stay involved as much as possible. Glad to hear. Up against global powers.
Raffi- facilitator.

Question of “What to do in a situation that would be effective?” distressed – instead of whine and complain-- how to be effective without being violent and without being angry.

What are we willing to change in terms of our behavior that will reflect a totally way of being in this world?

We are all participating in this system- some, more than others. I'm a dyed-in-the-wool environmentalist-- don't throw away anything. If could get whole world to do that. Bottled water is a scam. Those kinds of movements can begin to make some changes. Some changes would lead to people losing jobs.

Andrew- What changes and behavior-- also social and human rights-- need to be addressed. Global system-- Restoration-- going to ecosystems-- while providing new livelihoods for new unemployed-- without being connected to …

Raffi – placemaking, disconnect from dollar, not pay taxes- create local currencies. assumpti

Andrew- increasing, multiplying local production.

Jane- What will make a difference here? Everytime I think about some action-- most people today have very few skills- can't survive. Can't grow food. Can't take care of normal things to life. Can't repair things. We really can't survive. Without something, we're lost. Everyone's specialized, we've created a trap for ourselves. Learning how to take care of ourselves. Requires being a lot more connected as a community. Most of us unwilling to do that. We've been spoiled. Pick up and order it. It's tough to find something that a large number of people to make a change in our own behavior. You can't learn something overnight. Nobody's really dealing with this on a very practical down-to-earth level We're all at a level of frustration. What it's going to take is a whole other story. There ought to be more conversations about what change requires.

I have to change my behavior. What am I willing to let go of? What are you willing to let go of?

Andrew- when say no skills, for the salt question- local resilience is it. What are people willing to give up for themselves. Some may not be able to give up much.

 

I hope this collapses, because it is a very long list.  It has a zillion ideas for putting your $ into something that redistributes the wealth away from the oppressive powers that be:
Christmas 2011 -- Birth of a New Tradition

As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories are kicking into high
gear to provide Americans with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods --
Merchandise that has been produced at the expense of American labor. This
year will be different. This year Americans will give the gift of genuine
concern for other Americans. There is no longer an excuse that, at gift
giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by American hands. Yes
there is!

It's time to think outside the box, people. Who says a gift needs to fit in
a shirt box, wrapped in Chinese produced wrapping paper?
Everyone -- yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates
from your local American hair salon or barber?

Gym membership? It's appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some
health improvement.

Who wouldn't appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, American owned
detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a
book of gift certificates.

Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plonking down
the Benjamines on a Chinese made flat-screen? Perhaps that grateful gift
receiver would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or
driveway plowed all winter, or games at the local golf course.

There are a bazillion owner-run restaurants -- all offering gift
certificates. And, if your intended isn't the fancy eatery sort, what about
a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint. Remember, folks this
isn't about big National chains -- this is about supporting your home town
Americans with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.

How many people couldn't use an oil change for their car, truck or
motorcycle, done at a shop run by the American working guy?

Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom? Mom would LOVE the services of a
local cleaning lady for a day.

My computer could use a tune-up, and I KNOW I can find some young guy who is
struggling to get his repair business up and running.

OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin
their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, and pottery
and beautiful wooden boxes.

Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave
your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at
your hometown theatre.

Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.

Honestly, people, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese
lights for the house? When you buy a five dollar string of light, about
fifty cents stays in the community. If you have those kinds of bucks to
burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.


You see, Christmas is no longer about draining American pockets so that
China can build another glittering city. Christmas is now about caring about
US, encouraging American small businesses to keep plugging away to follow
their dreams. And, when we care about other Americans, we care about our
communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we couldn't imagine.

THIS is the new American Christmas tradition.

Forward this to everyone on your mailing list -- post it to discussion
groups -- throw up a post on Craigslist in the Rants and Raves section in
your city -- send it to the editor of your local paper and radio stations,
and TV news departments. This is a revolution of caring about each other,
and isn't that what Christmas is about?
 

The way forward that I see involves participants putting their time and new process skills into a menu that includes:
1. Local sustainability and alternative economy efforts. Local or regional banking.
2. Implement process reform locally and globally using methods championed by (for example) the Co-Intelligence Institute.
3. Develop process reform online including further developing the occupy café.
4. Pick a social and economic justice effort that is already established and pitch in.
5. Suggest that people watch the panel discussion at    http://www.thenation.com/video/164494/watch-michael-moore-naomi-kle...

 

very rough notes from conversation-

When Does Acquiring Wealth Become an Addiction?

Jane- have been a devout heretic for many years.

Steve Buckley- Cape Cod. How is it the 1% seem to want more and more money? On Sat. on NPR, Humankind Program- “When people are insecure about the future will go for more and more. If there is a safety net and will not fall far they won't be concerned about stashing more money than they need. Human nature hasn't changed but rather the conditions that they are under.So maybe it looks like greed. If flying high then can see more humanmedia.org “Income equality” for more . If understand this, perhaps can undo it.

David Eggleton- near Boston; participate OWS via Occupy Cafe. Visited Boston and Denver Occupations. Quite active at Occupy Cafe. When people are asked what it would take to be comfortable, people with net worth of 8 million or more wanted to be worth about twice of much regardless of where they were.

We need to have a new cultural definition of security and get on with being human beings as never before.

Jane- the one word that wasn't used in terms of that behavior is fear. Two things that go on with any behavior-- one is fear, the other is love/acceptance. You're either connected to it or you're not. The question to ask- “What am I afraid of?” Attended Interconnected Conference in NYC with Cornell West. He said our obsession with material world and success is a fear of death. He is a subject I know a lot about. I've written book on changing relationship to death. If we don't embrace this, doomed to be held by it.

David: Notion of leaving a legacy. The notion of doing something with one's time here that creates possibilities for those to come; Plants leave matter-- soil is a legacy from lives of the past. Shifting of fear of death to clarity that there is a lifetime, creating something more. Shifting from creating one's own pile of stuff to leaving for those to come.

Steve- hoarding in Russia. People would clear the shelves and buy more than they needed. If I saw that I'd be very unsettled. There is a feeling now that there is change, and with change there comes uncertainty. These are not good trends. We need to get more comfortable with what is going on.

Jane- everything is interconnected. That is the reality of life. And we're not living that way! We're living out false stories (Carol Gilligan). Falseness: Life is about survival of the fittest and dualities. Life is about connectedness. No wonder we're in trouble. We're behaving as if need to beat out the other guy. It's a fear-based behavior is violent and unsustainable. I don't have a phD in any of this but i've lived a few years! You can't just throw out the bad guys. Chaos is a natural part of any system, it's not a mistake, it's part of it. You never know what stage you're in in any process of change until afterwards. It's very hard to define while in the middle of it

There is no map.


David- Needed: Vision. Not a Map. We need a combination of awareness and imagination.

Steve- but that is a map- there are crude ways, and visioning is a step towards a path...it's a path towards finding a path. Not truly a map, but we can then find ourselves.

Jane: We've talked about embracing the shift than trying to fight it.

David : The Peculiar Institution- book on slavery. Kenneth Damp: interesting discussion about plantation of owner-run plantation vs. hired-managers plantations. Hired-managers often insecure and want to get results.

My take away from this is the gift of "learning to live in uncertainty" and that can only happen when we work together in community, accomplishing something together.  There is no map when we build the bridge as we go.

 


Raffi,

Great note-taking!  Thank you very much.

Here is the link to the relevant "Humankind" radio segment that I had mentioned hearing on NPR on Saturday.  Although the program summary is well-written (see below), the message is more easily conveyed by listening to the audio excerpt (see button on right-hand side of webpage):

  •  "The concentration of wealth has grown so extreme that now the most affluent one percent of Americans possess more assets than the bottom ninety-percent combined. For some, this poses a question of social justice. But in this segment, we consider other effects of income inequality as well: its impact on health – upon both the wealthier and poorer populations, and how inequality can weaken the bonds that hold our society together."
  • 

http://www.humanmedia.org/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=333

I'd be interested to know what you (or anyone else) thinks about the point that they are raising.  That is: in societies where there is more equality in income (think Norway, Sweden), everyone is happier .. even the 1% who are less-rich-than-they-could-be.

.

Question we covered: How much is this about protesting the old? How much is it about building the new? Are both needed?

Participants: David Eggleton, Helen Roberts and Suzanne Daigle

Helen is excited to see the number of people connected to the Occupy Movement to Occupy Café. I find more optimism, energy and persistence, she says.  Being able to have meaningful virtual conversations is also magnificent in creating deeper connection.  When you connect with someone on line, you feel drawn to read their blogs, to engage with them because you know them.

Suzanne is grateful to Occupy for putting important issues on the table, issues that needed to be spoken. She was astonished at how passive and silent people had been in the face of great losses: 401k, jobs, houses, etc.

David expresses concern that the dissent that is part of this movement can entrap and dissolve especially when you maintain the movement for its own sake. He has blogged about this.

He quotes Ralph Waldo Emerso: “There are always two parties; the establishment and the movement”

He distinguishes between the movement of establishment which is about maintaining, protecting, staying the same or getting worse and another kind of movement that is more generative: creation is a movement, the movement of life, ever generating possibility. What was new for me this morning, is that it introduced the notion of performance, a system we have that the Occupy movement is underperforming. With more acknowledgment of more people, we can have a system that operates better.

Suzanne expresses concern that we are looking to the Movement to represent us as we do leaders, politicians, looking to them to have the answers and lead the way.  She expresses that, like the youth defending us in two wars, they are there in the trenches, living what we cannot know, creating community and seeing life as it happens in the Occupy trenches.  We who are on the outside, must support them in different ways with action applauding the good that we see instead of always judging. We must support in our own way by speaking the issues and leaning into the possibilities. She also mentions that we must leave time for outrage, for grieving, for being in the unknown.  We cannot simply erase the past; it requires us to live in the two worlds for a while until we create something new.  She is interested in creating community in the workplace and in organizations through action.

Helen speaks of the habit of prioritizing, honoring our responsibilities. She regrets that people today are so overloaded with so many commitments (working parents, social demands, etc)  that they have imposed on themselves leaving little freedom, time or space to be available, really available in contributing to the building of a new future and what matters to them.

Suzanne agrees: people are overwhelmed, scared and exhausted which is why she and a team of 20 are hosting a Global Conversation on Brené Brown’s work about" Letting go who we think we are supposed to be to embrace who we are".   

The groups sits a moment with a few questions: What will the winter be for the Occupy Movement? How might the succession of change happen? 

No easy answers.  According to David there are equally potent forms besides Occupy.

How might this succession of change happen?  What will happen next with winter coming?

We talked about holding space for people to get in touch with their pain.  There is much work to do; there are things we can do in our local and regional areas, talking, sharing and acting.  We must look to action and this is how we can support Occupy, acting locally where we feel drawn, doing the doing.  

To which David responds: I find the idea that people don’t so much fight as forget to support, as they bring up notions a new economy, global this or planetary that, setting up a movement is so big that it becomes a movement for failure.   I have been on this for so long, it’s hard not to have a position, when you’ve been preparing for a long time; there is so much work to do, jobs are offered that are against the work that humans are waiting to do.

There’s no way for people who have been marginalized to replace the crummy system, he says. We need lots and lots of work (to which I add “by many”, not just the Movement!)

Thanks for all that, Suzanne.  Do you know shorthand?

Emerson said "There is always the movement.  What was the movement is the establishment."  I think it was a report of observations of natural systems, such as trees and soils.

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