reoccupied new school on Thu, 14 May 2009 16:22:13 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> Committee to Investigate the April 10th Occupation of the New School

*Re: Committee to Investigate the April 10th Occupation of the New


*To help push along the inquiry into the facts concerning the occupation of
65 Fifth Avenue<>,
NYC on April 10th 2009, we are offering clear and direct responses to all
the questions that the New School committee is seeking to answer. We do hope
this clears some things up. *

On Tue, May 5, 2009 at 4:56 PM, Announce Announce  <>

May 5, 2009

The Chair of the Board of Trustees and the Co-chairs of the Faculty Senate
have agreed to form a Committee, to be convened by the Chairman of the
Board, to conduct a detailed inquiry into the facts relating to the
occupation of 65 Fifth Avenue on April 10, 2009 and subsequent events.

Among the questions we expect our report to inquire into are the following:

1.      How was entry into 65 Fifth Avenue effected early in the morning of
April 10?

* *

*Through the vortex. *

2.      How many persons entered the building at that time?

*A risk of lobsters.*

(a)     How many were students or faculty of the University?  How many were
not connected with the University?

*We are all connected to capital; the university is a capitalist enterprise;
we are all connected to the university. QED*

3.      What was the stated purpose of the entry and how was that purpose

*The effacement of law through an act of divine violence communicated
through its very being(-out-of-time).*

4.      Did the persons entering the building threaten or cause physical
harm to any persons or property in the building?

*I remember when the property cried, torrents of saltwater down the gutters
of law. "Respect my rights," the doors sang. "Over my dead body," whispered
the epoxy. "But my texture!" the carpet chanted. "Be my lover," the paint
responded. A family of things, packed together in church. "Shhh! The sermon
is about to start," opened the gates.*

* *

*"All ye who have gathered here today," the building pounded with fury,
"take note of the power of our lord and savior, the One whose name shall not
be spoken, the One whose form is in us, which connects us, which gives us
strength to go on. Praise be to he, the truth of our time, the time of our
truth, the Proper One."*

* *

*(cut scene)*

* *

*On the one hand, an overexploited proletarian was calmly and peacefully
escorted out with no harm whatsoever, with precise care and speed so as not
to scare or upset him. The police interrogation session frightened him, as
he said, not the students. Any subsequent pain was completely unintentional
and students have made strong efforts to articulate their remorse.*

* *

*On the other hand, a gaggle of students were pepper-sprayed directly in the
eyeballs, while people outside were socked in the jaw and slammed headfirst
on the ground by our friendly neighborhood legally justified violence
agency, the police. No admissions of guilt, no apologies, nothing from the
force of law. Only the uninterrupted monologue of self-praise.*

* *

*You decide. *

5.      Did any of the persons in the group that entered wear ski masks,
carry weapons, or articles that could be used as weapons or threaten harm to
people or property?  Did people who had contact with the group and observed
its behavior believe they or others or property were being threatened with
physical harm?

*The mountains inside were laced with fog, and the air was dry and curt. Of
course skis were requires to pass between valleys, and go from peak to peak.
Masks blocked the snow, but the articles were of no use. Why bring in
articles when all have access to .PDF's? Weapons were carried across the
valley, the weapons of trust, solidarity, love, freedom, courage,
friendship, and joy. Hard to fit them in our bags, we wore them outright,
swallowed them wholesale, or shared them amongst us like a murder of crows.

* *

*The behavior, observed by numerous scientists, sociologists, marketers,
security apparatuses as well as other lobsters, schoolchildren, criminals,
and Greeks, had a definite structure. A seemingly unheard of phenomenon in
recent time, only recognizable through historical forms of activity, the
behavior was seemingly the actual product of one's own creation, desired and
willed from start to finish, blocked from all mechanisms of recuperation and
apparatuses of domination. A practice of theory, opaque to estrangement,
transparent to life, this form of being is immanently hostile to the
researcher's quota for new cool identities to be bought and sold for the
upcoming quarter. *

* *

*(cut scene)*

* *

*"They or others or property," a perfect synthesis of our times, a formula
of modern community. They. Others. Property. They, that is the group over
there, distant, multiple, separate. Others,  the non-self, different,
unsame, unnamed, outside. Property, the name of all names, the lining of the
cloud, the eye of shame, the uncommon, the seal, the stamp, the bullet in
your trust, the debt of time, the wealth of cemeteries.  *

6.      What information about the entry, or the behavior of the entering
group was initially communicated to University Security?

*"01011100101001000100111010101011010101010101001010101001011010010101" was
IMMEDIATELY reported to all university security facilities. Any attempt of
the administration to deny such genuine information sharing is outright

* *

(a)     To whom did University Security communicate this information?

*Hierarchy. *

(b)     Was additional information communicated to University Security?
 When?  Was this information further communicated?  To whom?

*If what human beings had to communicate to each other were always and only
something, there would never be politics properly speaking, but only
exchange and conflict, signals and answers. But because what human beings
have to communicate to each other is above all a pure communicability (that
is, language), politics then arises as the communicative emptiness in which
the human face emerges as such. It is precisely this empty space that
politicians and the media establishment are trying to be sure to control, by
keeping it separate in a sphere that guarantees its unseizability and by
preventing communicativity itself from coming to light. This means that an
integrated Marxian analysis should take into consideration the fact that
capitalism (or whatever other name we might want to give to the process
dominating world history today) not only was directed to the expropriation
of productive activity, but was also and above all directed to the
alienation of language itself, of the communicative nature of human beings.*

7.      When were responsible senior members of the Administration first
notified of the occupation of 65 Fifth Avenue?

*Timing. Schedule. Structure. Instant. Instant. Instant. Time on the
continuum. Point 1, Point 2, Point 3. In-between Points: 1.5, 1.6.
In-between in-between points: 1.51, 1.52. Infinity alpha vs. Infinity beta.
Timing is everything. Succession, not simultaneity. 1, 2, 3, n+1. A linear
progression to extend infinitely.  Progress. The law of progress. A starting
point. Zero. God. No end point but redemption. Redeem us, redeem us
yesterday, transfinite. *

* *

*The clocks tell the time. The time tells the day. The day tells me to work.

Burn the clocks. Negate time. Liberate the day. Abolish work.   *

* *

(a)     What was the subsequent chain of notification?

*x told y, y told z, and z was like, oh my god, i can't believe x said that!
i know, y said, but x is always, like, saying that. i know i know, said z,
but i didn't think that would be said this time. come on, y said, you're so
dumb sometimes. oh shut up y and kiss me. *

* *

(b)     When President Kerrey was notified, what facts were communicated to

*Facts: The concatenation of descriptors, tied together around a monad,
linked to a chain on a continuum of linear time. Repetition of the same. The
law of the situation. Automatism, objectified. *

* *

*Truth: Material burdens carried by faithful subjects in the wake of
catastrophic events, undecidable from the law of the situation. Novelty
through rupture. Anomic presence of the void, declared. *

8.      Who initially communicated with the police department about the
occupation of 65 Fifth Avenue?  What information was given to the police

*Today?s territory is the product of many centuries of police operations.
People have been pushed out of their fields, then their streets, then their
neighborhoods, and finally from the hallways of their buildings, their
universities, in the demented hope of containing all life between the four
sweating walls of privacy. The territorial question isn?t the same for us as
it is for the state. For us it?s not about possessing territory. Rather,
it?s a matter of increasing the density of the communes, of circulation, and
of solidarities to the point that the territory becomes unreadable, opaque
to all authority. We don?t want to occupy the territory, we want to be the

(a)     To which notification did the police respond?

*"They have swords!"*

i.      What was the response?

*"Shields, helicopters and tanks, oh my!"*

(b)     Did any later call provoke a further police response?  Whose call
and what response?

*Call: OCCUPY*

*Response: EVERYTHING*

*Call: OCCUPY*

*Response: EVERYTHING*

(c)     To what extent, if any, did the police respond to specific requests
from any non-police department request for specific types or levels of
police action?  To what extent was police action dictated by internal police
guidelines for dealing with similar demonstrations.

*The extent to which the demonstration was dictated by a similar extent,
allowed for a guideline of levels to be requested. If any, the internal
types were similar to the specific response for dealing with
non-departments. QED*

9.      Were University guidelines relating to demonstrations observed by
the occupiers, other students, faculty, and the Administration?

*"Demonstrations . . . have great potential to disrupt normal functions."*

*                                                                         -
Demonstration Guidelines*

*As a community devoted to fulfilling its potential, the disruption of
normal functions is the highest goal any demonstration can achieve,
according to the University Guidelines on Demonstration. The occupiers did
observe this injunction, and materially unleashed the potential for a
disruption of normal functionality. This task, highest among all, achieves
its goal when a particular function becomes useless, and the object,
structure, or event that houses said function is reintegrated into the
totality of life as a unified social practice. Such cohesion of activity
realizes an inseparability between physical location, social relations, and
temporal unfolding. However, as the Guidelines discuss, this potential unity
is impossible to achieve without a simultaneous destruction of the imposed
functionality in which the demonstration seeks to supersede. To demonstrate
in practice these dual purposes of social action in a unified way is the
goal of every real demonstration. Occupation is the logical result of such
guidelines. *

(a)     What aspects of the guidelines were not followed?

*"Free exchange of ideas requires active, ongoing, sometimes arduous support
by the university community."*

*                                                                   **    -
Demonstration Guidelines*

*We too believe in the free exchange of ideas and other commodities, and we
hope that a transparent space of democratic communication can open up new
vistas for the transportation and circulation of such ideas or commodities
in our world. Without such arduous support, how can new ideas or commodities
enter the world and impose their reign upon our defeated wills? We need
active, ongoing support of the free exchange of ideas or commodities to make
this university, this community, this world, function. Anything else would
be anti-civilized. *

*"The exercise of the freedom of expression does not mean its unlimited
exercise at all times, in all possible manners, in all places."***

*                                                                        -
Demonstration Guidelines     *

*An unlimited exercise of freedom would surely lead to the collapse of all
time, proliferation in all possible manners, and secession in all places. A
regulated, disciplinary management of freedom must contain such a threat
before it?s too late. Occupation, as the most salient form of unified
activity, if done properly could lead to the unlimited exercise of freedom.
Hence, at all times, in all possible manners, in all places, we must cut it
off at the start. *

i.      Were there reasons for their not being followed?

*?The University also will designate a bulletin board in the lobby of the **
Albert** **List** **Academic** **Center** where members of the university
community can exercise their right of free expression on any issue.?***

*                        - Demonstration Guidelines*

*Without such a bulletin board to exercise their rights on "any issue," what
would students do? How else would they communicate their unimportant
opinions to uninterested students? What other alibis for non-action would
they have, if not for such a bulletin board? Where would security
administrators go to look for potential threats and disruptions? How would
people communicate about the petty values of their lives without a hostile
object to confront them with predetermined forms of how they are supposed to
already respond? *

* *

*The growing infantilization of modern students and the increasing formation
of student groups are two aspects of the same process. Democracy attempts to
organize the newly created student groups without affecting the property
structure which the students strive to eliminate. Democracy sees its
salvation in giving these students not their right, but instead a chance to
express themselves. The students have a right to change property relations;
Democracy seeks to give them an expression while preserving property. The
logical result of Democracy is the introduction of aesthetics into political

* *

*Students respond by occupying everything.***

* *

10.     How did negotiations for the occupants to leave the building start?

 *With two-hundred police vehicles surrounding four city blocks containing
hundreds of cops with riot gear, guns, shields, helmets, and helicopters
above swarming, with 50-60 cops on the roof of the building sledgehammering
their way through the doors as chainsaws cut through the front, with
three-hundred sets of reinforced metal barricades blocking every entrance
and containing every exit, the negotiations started on equal terms to the
nineteen occupiers inside who had no weapons but the courage amongst them. *

(a)     At what point were the occupiers asked to leave the building?

 *When time took up arms and imposed its will on space.  *

(b)     Did the occupiers request a negotiating intermediary?  If so, how
long before one was identified?

 *The occupiers respectfully requested the autodestruction of all authority
and the immediate liberation of spaces of conflict such as 65 Fifth Ave.
However, the immediacy of their claim strayed from their theoretical
commitment to the dialectical logic of mediation. Hence, a debate broke out,
between the pro-immediatists and the pro-mediatists, with the first group
arguing for the direct sublation of mediation through the supersession of
the dialectic itself in struggle, while the latter group reaffirmed the
necessity of mediated existence as a historical legacy to be completed and
not to be avoided. The two camps finally came to a conclusion in practice
when they discovered their own activity ? as unity of subject and object
in-itself and for-itself ? emerged as the presupposition of both. *

* *

*This occurred at **5:55am** and 37 seconds. *

* *

i.      What role did the intermediary play?

 *The intermediary finds that it immediately is and is not another occupier,
as also that this other occupier is for itself only when it cancels itself
as existing for itself, and has self-existence only in the self-existence of
the other. Each is the mediating term to the other, through which each
mediates and unites itself with itself; and each is to itself and to the
other an immediate self-existing reality, which, at the same time, exists
thus for itself only through this mediation. They recognize themselves as
mutually recognizing one another.*

(c)     At what point did the occupiers indicate that they would leave the
building peacefully?

*Clearly, the moment when the occupiers announced their peaceful intentions
to leave the building was on the rooftop after they dropped the OCCUPY
EVERYTHING banner but before they unfurled the APRIL FOOLS MOTHERFUCKER
banner, as they waved black and red flags in masks and read the pamphlet
?Anti-Capitalism at the New School? by New School Schwarz und Rot from a
bullhorn to the crowd below, which started with a line from Walter Benjamin
that said:*

* *

*The tradition of the oppressed teaches us that the ?state of emergency? in
which we live is not the exception but the rule. We must attain to a
conception of history that is in keeping with this insight. Then we shall
clearly realize that it is our task to bring about a real state of

(d)     Were the occupiers told that, since the police believed that they
occupied the building unlawfully, they would have to be identified and
subject to possible criminal sanctions?



*Police:  #%#%#%#% FUCK YOU@#$@#%$ UNLAWFULLY$%#^%#^%#^%

(e)     What was the reaction of the occupiers?


*Occupier X: Hey, Y, are we occupying this building unlawfully, as he said?*

*Occupier Y: Yes.*

*Occupier X: Well, how come we didn?t get a permit first, and occupy it

*Occupier Y: Because you?re a fucking idiot, X. *

(f)     Did any try to leave the building without being identified?

* *

*The more I am recognized, the more my gestures are hindered,
internallyhindered. Here I am, caught in the super-tight meshwork of
the new power. In
the impalpable net of the new police:
There is a whole network of assemblages through which I ?integrate? myself,
and that incorporates these qualities in me.
A whole petty system of filing, identification and mutual surveillance.
A whole diffuse prescription of absence.
A whole machinery of mental control, which aims at panopticism, at
privatized transparency, at atomization.
And in which I struggle.*

(g)     Did occupiers open the doors to let the police into the building?
 Or did the police force the door open?

 *The Occupiers have the ball with 12 seconds left in the 2nd half, but the
Police are coming up quick behind them, on top of them, in front of them,
beside them, below them. The Occupiers pass left, give and go, double-back,
ball is in the paint going up for the net and NO, blocked at the last minute
by a Police shuffle. Double-barricaded, fouled out, the Occupiers try a
final take to the hole but the clock RUNS OUT and the subs never get the
chance to come in and take over from the starters. Overall, the Occupiers
take everyone by surprise with their elegant moves and tight coordination,
but they didn?t count on the hard Police defense, which was, just to be
frank, backed by the University refs. Next time, with the Occupiers having
the home court advantage, we?re likely to see a rematch that nobody can
predict. *

(h)     Did any of the occupiers resist arrest?  Were there forcible arrests
with injury to the persons arrested or the police?

 *The only force that resisted arrest was the force of history.  At first
suspended in the light of practice, history?s deactivated status contained a
potential for what some call redemption. With its decapitated body, the
angel of history no longer looks back or forward. It simply wanders
aimlessly against, or with, the storm of progress. But when time is
arrested, the body of history leaps over the storm and, in its wake,
unleashes an even greater one. A hurricane of truth liquidates the storm of
progress and, for a moment, happiness wanders amongst the mortals. When the
force of law catches sight of such a void in its very own fabric, it unifies
all its disparate elements to block it. Resisting arrest, the angel of
history enters the storm again, wandering indistinctly until the next
catastrophe. The mortals are not saved, and the incomplete project of
redemption sits, waiting for another to take it up. *

11.     Are there University policies and procedures for communicating about
events such as these with the University community and with the general


* *


* *

*Dear Community,*

* *

*The **New** **School** loves protest. Hey, we were founded on protest. I?ve
been to protests. This one time, I was protesting so hard on acid that I had
to arrest myself for fear of total liberation. Ah, yes, that was 1966, right
before all the bad protests started, but after the good ones lost their
steam. How come today?s protests aren?t like the ones from those days? Back
then, before every protest, we did mounds of coke and painted our nipples
red in order to frighten the police when we lifted our shirts. We usually
had an orgy or two afterwards, rolling on lush carpets in groovy apartments
as Jefferson Airplane wrapped round my head and the orgasmic unity of two,
three, four lovely souls was synergized to the television screen. Every
protest was sexual, and all sex was protestual. *

* *

*But now, our youths are lost. Caught up in boring meetings and clandestine
actions, they forget the true nature of protest ? immediate social ecstasy.
Sure, there?s something like a cause or campaign, but the protest form has
been exhausted when it no longer leads to the generalization of joy. I?m not
saying that we understood this back then. On the contrary, we of the
previous generation didn?t realize that such a goal was in fact cancelled by
our drug-induced sexual escapades. Yeah they were fun, but their limited
nature did not prepare us for the counter-revolution to come. Today, any
revolt that pushes social pleasure either to the future horizon or contains
it to the instant of action blocks the possibility for a time of joy that
sees no end in sight. In effect, our limited freedom allowed us to go back
to work happy. This was our mistake. I hope the students don?t repeat it.*

* *

*These students must break out of their student ghettos and connect to the
larger social tension at hand. An occupation is cool and all, but that was
so ?68. I would have thought that students could do more than just occupy a
building for themselves. How come they didn?t occupy multiple buildings and
invite the whole city in? How come they didn?t create their own self-defense
network? How come they didn?t make the building into a site for propaganda,
action planning, radio broadcasting? How come they didn?t connect with
plumbers and electricians in the neighborhood, construction workers and
subway drivers, restaurant workers and coffee servers? What would have
happened if the entire block was freed from its subservience to selling
commodities, enforcing work, and managing order? A place where people could
talk directly, think clearly, enjoy freely, and live according to their
actual needs and their shared desires. *

* *

*But our students are still young. I am their enemy, I guess, but I am
closer to them than they think. We see each other clearly, without the fog
of politics or the mask of reform. I know what they want, they know what I
want. I will oppose them so as to help them become stronger. And they will.
One day, when our lives are tied together in a real struggle against
capital, we?ll laugh at these days of youth and smile behind the barricades
as the empire crumbles to the ground. *

* *

*With Fists Raised,*

* *

*Bob Kerrey*

* *

* *

(a)                If such policies and procedures exist, to what extent
were they followed?

 *Because governing has never been anything other than postponing by a
thousand subterfuges the moment when the crowd will string you up, and every
act of government is nothing but a way of not losing control of the

Julien Studley
Jim Miller
David Howell

 *New School for Endless Occupation*

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