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UC Santa Cruz Students OCCUPY!

by calmlikeabomb
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On September 24th, students at UC Santa Cruz began the occupation of the Graduate Student Commons as part of a day of action at all UCs across the state. The building is located in a central location on campus, across from the Bay Tree Bookstore. Occupiers are calling for another day of walkouts on Friday.

michael jackson's thriller is bumping in the bay tree plaza right now.

more information to be posted as the occupation settles in.
§Occupy California
by Occupy California
September 24, 2009

We are occupying this building at the University of California, Santa Cruz, because the current situation has become untenable. Across the state, people are losing their jobs and getting evicted, while social services are slashed. California’s leaders from state officials to university presidents have demonstrated how they will deal with this crisis: everything and everyone is subordinated to the budget. They insulate themselves from the consequences of their own fiscal mismanagement, while those who can least afford it are left shouldering the burden. Every solution on offer only accelerates the decay of the State of California. It remains for the people to seize what is theirs.

The current attack on public education – under the guise of a fiscal emergency – is merely the culmination of a long-term trend. California’s regressive tax structure has undermined the 1960 Master Plan for free education. In this climate, the quality of K-12 education and the performance of its students have declined by every metric. Due to cuts to classes in Community Colleges, over 50,000 California youth have been turned away from the doors of higher education. California State University will reduce its enrollment by 40,000 students system wide for 2010-2011. We stand in solidarity with students across the state because the same things are happening to us. At the University of California, the administration will raise student fees to an unprecedented $10,300, a 32 percent increase in one year. Graduate students and lecturers return from summer vacation to find that their jobs have been cut; faculty and staff are forced to take furloughs. Entire departments are being gutted. Classes for undergraduates and graduates are harder to get into while students pay more. The university is being run like a corporation.

Let’s be frank: the promise of a financially secure life at the end of a university education is fast becoming an illusion. The jobs we are working toward will be no better than the jobs we already have to pay our way through school. Close to three-quarters of students work, many full-time. Even with these jobs, student loan volume rose 800 percent from 1977 to 2003. There is a direct connection between these deteriorating conditions and those impacting workers and families throughout California. Two million people are now unemployed across the state. 1.5 million more are underemployed out of a workforce of twenty million. As formerly secure, middle-class workers lose their homes to foreclosure, Depression-era shantytowns are cropping up across the state. The crisis is severe and widespread, yet the proposed solutions – the governor and state assembly organizing a bake sale to close the budget gap – are completely absurd.

We must face the fact that the time for pointless negotiations is over. Appeals to the UC administration and Sacramento are futile; instead, we appeal to each other, to the people with whom we are struggling, and not to those whom we struggle against. A single day of action at the university is not enough because we cannot afford to return to business as usual. We seek to form a unified movement with the people of California. Time and again, factional demands are turned against us by our leaders and used to divide social workers against teachers, nurses against students, librarians against park rangers, in a competition for resources they tell us are increasingly scarce. This crisis is general, and the revolt must be generalized. Escalation is absolutely necessary. We have no other option.

Occupation is a tactic for escalating struggles, a tactic recently used at the Chicago Windows and Doors factory and at the New School in New York City. It can happen throughout California too. As undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, and staff, we call on everyone at the UC to support this occupation by continuing the walkouts and strikes into tomorrow, the next day, and for the indefinite future. We call on the people of California to occupy and escalate.

Press Contact: (eight-three-one) 332.8916
§live from the autonomous zone
by repost
"what goes on between bodies in an occupation is more interesting than the occupation itself."
-how is it to be done?

i arrived on ucsc campus sweaty and tired after biking 20 miles to *my* school and back, feeling barely able to stand. the protest march arriving at bay tree plaza was not too inspiring; when the 100 or so people sat down in the street to discuss "what do we want?" all some people could think to do was shout slogans. the protest-form reached its absurd terminus in a group cheerleading session.

and then the occupation began. a sound system blared as about 20 bodies, wearing swine flu masks to both symbolize and defend against our modern sickness, barricaded themselves inside the graduate student commons, unfurled banners and began reading their beautifully-written communique, occupy california!, from the balcony overlooking the plaza. a few cops wandered through the dance party below, looking confused. and then it was time to begin barring the entrances we outside were asked to help with. the vague questions, the politics, the feuds great and petty disappeared as in the realm of tactics, friends, estranged acquaintances and perfect strangers together encountered the concrete possibilities: how to move this dumpster? where do we find more big rocks? how to best attach this section of fence to the building? trash vessels, quarry debris and other useless materials found new purposes in the architecture of barricades. the fatigue in my muscles was no longer important; it was go time. i had no idea when i put my t-shirt on in the morning that i would be wearing it over my face later in the day. thanks for that, comrades.

i won't be here long but it was too much for me to not make an appearance. there is a meeting going on now, reports coming in from actions in berkeley (occupiers sold out by liberal activists) and pittsburgh. the sound system still thumping below into the electric-lit night. the building, it turns out, legally belongs to the graduate student association, NOT the uc, who - it's said - won't be sending police without the gsa's say so. so far, so good. there is talk of more occupations. "escalation is absolutely necessary" said the communique. fuck. yeah.

a general assembly has been called for 10am tomorrow. see you there?

an overturned dumpster in this plaza is a more beautiful sight than 100 protest signs.

this is not about making demands.
the goal of every occupation is to grow, multiply and become irreversible.
block everything,
occupy everything,
strike without end,
toward collective action against all institutional frameworks.
towards social war,
against this world.

banners hanging from the balcony outside:

indybay: ucsc students occupy!

guardian-uk: university of california campuses erupt in protest

some comrades at uc merced put out a pamphlet called "communique from an absent future: terminus of student life". it doesnt seem to be online yet, and i havent read the whole thing but it looks like a west coast cousin of the new school in exile's writings.
§The Beachhead
by Occupy California
September 25, 2009

We in here are undergraduates, graduate students, teachers, workers, and unemployed. We are not leaving.

People ask what we want. WE WANT EVERYTHING. We want the university, this bankrupt institution of a bankrupt society, to grind to a fucking halt. One occupation is not enough.

We need to clear up a little misunderstanding. We are not the general assembly. We will not get what we want through endless discussion, but by taking action. TAKE ACTION.

Listen: we are getting fucked by this crisis. The crisis is not an ‘unlucky’ turn of events. It is the culmination of a long-term trend. Things are not going to simply ‘get better’, and anyway they were never enough.

But know this: the administration is just a cog in the machine; they aren’t going to help us. We’d do best to ignore them just as they are ignoring us.

The administration hopes that we’ll blow off steam. That we’ll go back to ‘business as usual’. WE CAN’T GO BACK.

No one will give us what we want, we have to TAKE IT.

We took this space, not because it is a graduate space, but because it was there for the taking. Have a look around. Other spaces are there for the taking, throughout the campus, the city, and beyond.

This is not about those of us inside this building. This is about what all of us do from here. We’ve show that this can be done. It must be done, again and again and again.

We will not tell you what to do. People in the crowd are already planning actions. Get involved. We will stand in solidarity with you as you stand with us!
§UCSC Occupation
by Occupy California
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§ITALIAN: We are the Crisis: Occupy California!
by italian students free network
Non è altro che l`inizio! È da Venerdì scorso che decine di studenti e lavoratori della UC di Santa Cruz stanno occupando alcuni locali del proprio campus per protestare contro i tagli ai finanziamenti pubblici e salari, insieme ai vertiginosi aumenti delle tasse universitarie. ‘Non abbiamo altra scelta che occupare, perché la situazione è diventata insostenibile’. Queste sono le prime parole con cui studenti e ricercatori annunciano l`occupazione dell’università di Santa Cruz in California (

Qualche mese fa, parlando del sistema universitario americano, un giornalista del famoso Chronical HE si chiedeva quando la bolla della educazione sarebbe scoppiata. Una domanda retorica se si pensa che nella sola California i pesanti tagli hanno ridotto di quasi 40.000 studenti il numero degli iscritti per l`anno accademico 2010/2011 con un aumento delle tasse fino a 10.300 dollari in più, vale a dire un aumento annuo del 32% (sic!). A questo dobbiamo aggiungere che il debito studentesco è aumentato dell`800% dal 1977 al 2003 solo negli Stati Uniti e quasi i due terzi degli studenti sono di fatto lavoratori a tempo pieno.

Alle cinque del pomeriggio di giovedì scorso, decine di studenti e lavoratori dell`università si sono incontrati al secondo piano della UC Santa Cruz. Bloccate le porte con banchi e mobili vari, la scritta ‘Occupiamo tutto!’ è comparsa sulle pareti del campus.

La solidarietà a questa occupazione e alle loro rivendicazioni è arrivata in un solo giorno fin dalle università di Washington e dagli studenti della NYU, ovvero dall`altra parte degli States.

Gli occupanti domandano al rettore ed ai suoi organi accademici di bloccare i tagli al personale e ai salari, così come l`aumento delle tasse studentesche per coprire un buco di bilancio di 813 milioni di dollari dovuto alla mancanza di fondi pubblici.

Un aumento delle tasse e allo stesso tempo un drastico taglio alle risorse condanna inevitabilmente gli studenti a pagare sempre di più per un servizio sempre più dequalificato. Ricetta, questa, in via di sperimentazione anche negli atenei europei ed italiani in particolare.

Docenti costretti a prendersi un anno di aspettativa, interi dipartimenti dimezzati, aumenti delle tasse universitarie: non è soltanto la crisi del pubblico quella che abbiamo di fronte con la quasi bancarotta della UC, ma di un particolare modello di università, ovvero di quel virtuoso legame che ha reso possibile, per intenderci, esperienze produttive come la Silicon Valley, altrimenti impensabili senza la spina dorsale delle università californiane.

Richiamandosi direttamente alle occupazioni di fabbrica della Chicago Republic Windows and Doors da parte degli operai, dopo che la Bank of America aveva cancellato il finanziamento alla compagnia nel 2008, questa nuova occupazione ad oltranza ci insegna di come sempre più anche lo stesso mondo dei servizi sia legato a doppio filo alla stessa speculazione finanziaria.

Tutt’altro che passata, la crisi sta facendo sentire fino in fondo la sua morsa: dopo aver messo in ginocchio uno stato come la California e la città di Chicago, sta pesantemente investendo le stesse istituzioni universitarie statunitensi sia pubbliche che private.

Dopo le note rassicuranti dei governi seduti al G20 di Pittsburgh e della banca centrale (Fed in testa) che candidamente hanno affermato come il peggio sia ormai passato, gli fa eco oggi il rumoroso slogan degli occupanti della baia di S. Francisco: ‘We are the crisis!’. Noi siamo la crisi!

Paolo Do
Be realistic, demand the impossible

Ακολουθεί η μετεφρασμένη[από το] ανακοίνωση των καταληψιών του Πανεπιστημίου της Καλιφόρνια, όπως βγήκε στο

Καταλαμβάνουμε το κτήριο του Πανεπιστημίου της California, Santa Cruz, διότι η σημερινή κατάσταση έχει γίνει αφόρητη. Σε όλη την πολιτεία οι άνθρωποι χάνουν τις δουλειές τους και τους κάνουν έξωση ενώ οι κοινωνικές υπηρεσίες έχουν περικοπεί. Οι ηγέτες της California, απο κρατικούς αξιωματούχους εως πρόεδροι πανεπιστημίων έχουν αποδείξει πώς θα αντιμετωπίσουν αυτή την κρίση: τα πάντα και όλοι εξαρτώνται απο τον προυπολογισμό. Οι ίδιοι έχουν προφυλάξει τους εαυτούς τους απο τις συνέπειες της δικής τους κακής δημοσιονομικής διαχείρισης, ενώ όσοι μπορούν στο ελάχιστο να αντέξουν οικονομικά [ελεύθερη μετάφραση: οι οικονομικά ασθενεστεροι] έχουν αφεθεί να επωμιστούν το βάρος. Κάθε λύση που προσφέρουν μόνο επιταχύνει την αποσύνθεση της πολιτείας της California. Παραμένει ζητούμενο για τον λαό να καταλάβει τι είναι δικό του.

Η σημερινή επίθεση στη δημόσια εκπαίδευση –υπό το πρόσχημα της έκτακτης φορολογικής ανάγκης- είναι απλώς η κατάληξη μιας μακροπρόθεσμης τάσης. Η οπισθοδρομική φορολογική διάρθρωση της California έχει υπονομεύσει το ρυθμιστικό σχέδιο του 1960 για την δωρεάν παιδεία. Σε αυτό το κλίμα η ποιότητα της Κ-12 εκπαίδευσης [αντίστοιχη της τριτοβάθμιας εκπαίδευσης στην Ελλάδα] και οι επιδόσεις των μαθητών έχουν μειωθεί σύμφωνα με κάθε μέτρηση. Λόγω των περικοπών στα κοινοτικά κολλέγια, πάνω απο 50.000 νέοι στην California έχουν αποκλειστεί απο τις πότρες της 3βάθμιας εκπαίδευσης. Το California State University θα μειώσει τις εγγραφές του σε 40.000 φοιτητές για το έτος 2010 – 2011. Είμαστε αλληλέγγυοι με τους μαθητές σε όλη την πολιτεία, διότι τα ίδια πράγματα που συμβαίνουν σε αυτούς συμβαίνουν και σε εμάς. Στο πανεπιστήμιο της California, η διοίκηση θα αυξήσει τα δίδακτρα με μια ανευ προηγουμένου αύξηση 10.300 δολλαρίων, 32% αύξηση σε ένα έτος. Μεταπτυχιακοί φοιτητές και καθηγητές που επιστρέφουν απο τις διακοπές του καλοκαιριού για να βρούν τις θέσεις εργασίας τους, έχουν κοπεί. Σχολές και προσωπικό είναι υποχρεωμένοι να λαμβάνουν υποχρεωτική αποχή απο την εργασία. Ολόκληρες υπηρεσίες έχουν διαλυθεί. Μαθήματα σε φοιτητές και πτυχιούχους είναι πιο δύσκολο να μπούν καθώς οι φοιτητές πληρώνουν περισσότερα. Το πανεπιστήμιο τρέχει [ελεύθερη μετάφραση: λειτουργεί] σαν μια εταιρεία.

Ας είμαστε ειλικρινεις: η υπόσχεση μιας οικονομικά ασφαλούς ζωής στο τέλος της πανεπιστημιακής

εκπαίδευσης, γίνεται γρήγορα μια ψευδαίσθηση. Οι θέσεις εργασίας στις οποίες κατευθυνόμαστε να εργαστούμε δεν θα είναι καλύτερες απο τιε θέσεις εργασίας που έχουμε ήδη για να πληρώσουμε την πορεία μας μέσα στο σχολείο [ελεύθερη μετάφραση: για να πληρώσουμε τις σπουδές μας]. Κοντά στα ¾ των φοιτητών δουλεύουν σε εργασίες πλήρους απασχόλησης. Ακόμα και με αυτές τις θέσεις εργασίας ο όγκος των φοιτητικών δανείων αυξήθηκε κατά 800% απο το 1977 έως το 2003. υπάρχει άμμεση σύνδεση μεταξύ αυτών και της επιδείνωσης των συνθηκών εκείνων που επηρεάζουν τους εργαζόμενους και τις οικογένειές του σε όλη την California. 2.000.000 άνθωποι είναι άνεργοι σε όλοι τη πολιτεία. 1.500.000 είναι υποαπασχολούμενοι ανάμεσα σε ένα εργατικό δυναμικό των 20.000.000. καθώς οι πρώην ασφαλείς, μεσαίας τάξης εργαζόμενοι χάνουν τα σπίτια τους απο εξώσεις, καταθλιπτικές παραγκουπόλεις φυτρώνουν σε ολόκληρη την πολιτεία. Η κρίση είναι σοβαρή και διαδεδομένη, όμως οι προτεινόμενες λύσεις – ο κυβερνήτης και η πολιτεία οργανώνουν πώληση [πωλήσεις] για να κλείσει το χάσμα του προυπολογισμού- είναι εντελώς παράλογες.

Πρέπει να αντιμετωπίσουμε το γεγονός οτι ο χρόνος για άσκοπες διαπραγματεύσεις έχει τελειώσει. Οι εκκλήσεις προς τη διοίκηση του UC Sacramento είναι μάταιες. Αντ’ αυτού κάνουμε έκκληση σε όλους τους ανθρώπους με τους οποίους αγωνιζόμαστε μαζί και όχι σε αυτούς που αγωνίζονται εναντίον μας. Μια μόνο ημέρα στο πανεπιστήμιο δεν είναι αρκετή, διότι δεν έχουμε την πολυτέλεια να επιστρέψουμε στη δουλειά ως συνήθως. Επιδιώκουμε να σχηματίσουμε μια ενιαία κίνηση με το λαό της California. Ξανά και ξανά, οι λειτουργικές απαιτήσεις στράφηκαν εναντίον μας απο τους ηγέτες μας και χρησιμοποιούνται για να διαιρέσουν τους κοινωνικούς λειτουργούς εναντίον των εκπαιδευτικών, τους νοσοκόμους απο τους φοιτητές, τους βιβλιοθηκονόμους απο τους φύλακες των πάρκων, σε έναν ανταγωνισμό για τους πόρους, που μας λένε είναι όλο και πιο σπάνιοι. Αυτή η κρίση είναι γενική και η εξέγερση πρέπει να γενικευτεί. Η κλιμάκωση είναι απολύτως απαραίτητη. Δεν έχουμε άλλη επιλογή.

Η κατάληψη είναι μια τακτική για την κλιμάκωση των αγώνων, μια τακτική που χρησιμοποιήθηκε πρόσφατα στο εργοστάσιο Windows and Doors του Chicago και στο New School της Νέας Υόρκης. Μπορεί να συμβεί σε όλη την California επίσης. Σαν προπτυχιακοί, μεταπτυχιακοί φοιτητές, μέλη ΔΕΠ και προσωπικό, καλούμε όλους στο πανεπιστήμιο της California να υποστηρίξουν αυτή την κατάληψη συνεχίζοντας τις δράσεις και τις απεργίες αύριο, την επόμενη μέρα και επ’ αόριστον. Καλούμε τον λαό της California να κάνει καταλήψεις και να κλιμακώσει.
§We Have Ended the Occupation
by Occupy California
We left this occupied space in order to escalate. This is only the beginning of a year-long and multi-year effort to stop and reverse the damage being done to public education in California.

Many students and workers are learning from our action how to escalate their own resistance against leaders who are failing to protect our education system. We hope this occupation and our future actions will also help catalyze people throughout the state of CA to fight back against the budget attacks on their communities. All universities are being run like corporations, and the situation has become unacceptable. Now is the time for students across the nation to fight back. We have received statements of solidarity from around California, the United States, and the world. This is a struggle situated here, on our California campuses, but it is directed far beyond.

We leave not to retreat but to plan further modes of escalation. We leave knowing that countless others out there are planning, gathering support, innovating, and strategizing. This is the end of this particular action, but it is only the beginning of more actions everywhere, again and again, as long as it takes.

We’ll see you in the very near future.

In solidarity,

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