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–2 votes
How are these decisions taken?
The AG is sovereign. Based on principles of dirct democracy all are free to come and participate, to make proposals and to give their opinions. Any decision must be made after a debate so that everyone has the maximum amount of information at their disposal to form their opinion. The AG is there for organising, to host debates and to apply decisions that are taken there. Blockades, strikes, actions; none of these are done on a whim, they are voted for democratically at the AG.
“The workers’ assembly is sovereign!”
The general assemblies functioned, at the Sorbonne and at Censier, only when the occupants of the building met to plan a new action, only when they met to organize their own practical activities. If a concrete action was not proposed, the general assembly tended to deteriorate.

If you're going to answer your own question I believe it is etiquette to do so in the "answer" box

1 Answer

+2 votes
At assemblies I've been to--anarchist ones, not Occupy--there is a space for the sharing of practical information (such as who has access to what resources); a space for open discussion (with a focus on analysis of social tensions or social movements and what to do or not do); a space for proposals (brought for debate and to test their strength and magnetism but not put through any formal decision-making process); and a space for people to break up and more concretely work on the proposals they like.

There has been no decision making at these assemblies, nor any voting, nor any democracy, nor any real reliance on the affinity group model.

I have attended meetings that functioned more like what you describe, with decision-making and a heavy recourse to the affinity group. But they were always called spokescouncils or consultas or convergences or something. This could be called the network model, or the anti-globalization era model.

I think the term assembly was popularized in place of those to create an informal setting more consistent with a distaste for formal groups and collective decision making. Of course now most people when they hear assembly think of the (Occupy) General Assembly, which is more like the anti-glob spokescouncil than the assemblies I described.
by (20.3k points)
This recent post on @news provides a different model than the one I describe from my experience. I really like the way it sounds.