Code Pink Journals CodePINK Journals

Work 4 Peace,Hold All Life Sacred,Eliminate Violence! I am on my mobile version of the door-to-door, going town-to-town holding readings/gatherings/discussions of my book "But What Can I Do?" This is my often neglected blog mostly about my travels since 9/11 as I engage in dialogue and actions. It is steaming with my opinions, insights, analyses toward that end of holding all life sacred, dismantling the empire and eliminating violence while creating the society we want ALL to thrive in

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

We MUST end war NOW! Congresswomon Lee

I hope I get to vote for this womon for president SOON!

Congresswoman Lee Opposes Extension of Counterproductive Afghan War

Washington, DC - Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-Oakland) issued the following statement in response to reports that the Obama Administration will propose a 2014 timeline for transitioning U.S. and NATO security responsibilities in Afghanistan at the NATO Lisbon Summit scheduled for November 19 – 20, 2010:

“I am deeply opposed to any action that would prolong the military occupation of Afghanistan,” said Congresswoman Lee. “The President’s proposal would delay the exit of U.S. troops by three more years. Where does it end?

“The war in Afghanistan is already the longest war in American history.

“A military solution in Afghanistan is neither feasible, affordable, or in the national security interest of the United States.

“Yet the Pentagon’s response to this situation is predictably the same- a request for more time and more resources.

“The Karzai government is corrupt as ever and the reality is that our mission to win the hearts and minds of the Afghan people is unattainable in this environment.

“Our men and women in uniform have performed with incredible courage and commitment - but they have been put in an impossible situation.”

“I will continue to push for a clear exit strategy and timeline for the complete withdrawal of U.S. troops and military contractors in Afghanistan.

“We must end this war now.”

Promise of oil

I decide to try this restaurant that looks like a sports bar - lots of signs for beer, maybe it's a pub? Pubs deep fry, yes?

There is a lovely front area with tables and chairs, and the restaurant/bar itself sits back behind the outdoor area.

Inside, a beautiful young womon peers at me over the podium at which she is sitting. The first thing I notice about her is that she is wearing a peace symbol ring on her hand. hmmmm...

I take a deep breath and speak in Spanish "A question please?" She nods and I proceed, struggling to explain in my best Spanish (not these words exactly) I am looking for veggie oil - used - and would like to pick it up before they toss it.

She solemnly eyes me, watching my every word, her expression never changing. She has the amazing eyes of a mother deer on alert.

She answers me in perfect English.

We laugh together. I wonder how many times does this happen in the U.S. How many times does a person who does not speak English ask for help or for something in their pieced-together English (most likely much better than my pieced-together Spanish), and they get the answer in their own language.

Not often. More often they are made to feel small and stupid for not speaking the language. No one in Mexico, thus far, has attempted to make me feel stupid for speaking Spanish so poorly. Although I do feel small and stupid - and remember all the times I started learning Spanish and then never kept it up.

Instead people try their best to either understand me or to find that one person they know who will speak at least some English.

Lula (I think that is what she says her name is. I don't want to ask her to repeat it in case she changes it to something more manageable for my lazy tongue) is very interested in practicing her English and figuring out what the hell I'm doing, collecting this veggie oil.

She tells me a little regretfully that she just called the guy this past Saturday to come pick up their oil.

I am surprised someone comes to pick up their oil too. Is someone making biodiesel here in Mexico?

But when I ask her why this guy is picking up the oil, she says he's a farmer and he gives it to his pigs and cows and horses. I am doubtful. What horse eats oil? But she explains it is mixed in with their food.

Then she shocks me and says he pays 3 pesos a liter. I rush to assure her that I too will pay. It is her turn to looked shocked. She takes me into the kitchen, where a young man is working, and they point to the 20 liter container of oil that is only maybe two liters full.

She tells me on Saturday she will have oil for me! YEAH!

I take her to see my truck, the first visitor I've had in Hermosillo!!! I show her the veggie tank in the back so she can really believe me. She reads every part of the truck. Then I should her my home.

She really loves it. I wish I had my joiyssey cards ready. She would be the first person I give one to.

Lula invites me to come back that nite and party, eat, drink with everyone. I thank her and let her know that I am in class tonite. Then I shock her one more time and tell her I don't drink. She can't believe it.

She says "no drugs either"; no drugs.

She asks me what I do instead. I point to the skies, my truck, the clean fresh air. Breathe, I say, Live, Feel, Enjoy.

I don't think she believes me. I don't tell her I love womyn, which is what I also do instead. Womyn, life, and Mother Earth.

I will try to make cards and dig out my CodePINK buttons and bring them with me on ... ugh ... Saturday. I guess I'm committed to staying until Saturday. Oh well, off to clase!


I head to Jung early this morning, after I water the trees across the street from my 'space' and make myself coffee to brace myself for my trip to maybe pick up oil.

I park out front, walk into the restaurant and in seconds, a young man comes out carrying 20 litres of aceite vegetal, still warm in the contenedore! Yeah!!! 20 litres down, 280 to go!

I rush to my Spanish lesson - the last in the mornings - and I am the only student who has showed up! YEAH!!!! again.

I learn future conjugations of regular and irregular verbs.

I was going to go to the museum today but I decide I MUST find more veggie oil, if I'm to head out of Hermosillo.

So I decide to go back to the Sushi place that was going to give me oil, and by the time I brought the container and strainer to the back door, they changed their minds, saying someone else picked up the oil. Cesar told me he'd get the name of whoever picked up their oil for me.

Today, I drive my truck into the tiny parking lot and impress the workers as I turn it around. They are much more friendly to me, not that they were unfriendly, I think I just did a poor job explaining what I need. Thankfully, my friend Gloria has given me more words that should help make the collecting smoother! THANK YOU Gloria!!!

Anyway, Cesar tells me to come back Friday evening and he will get me some oil. He has been recently deported from the U.S. - fucking Arizona - after spending 20 years of his life there. Terrible. He must have been a child when he arrived, for he can't be over 30 years old now. I might ask him Friday how old he is.

I decide to go the the other Sushi restaurant close by my organic coffee shop where I am at now, getting access to fast, free internet for 20 pesos for coffee - which is about $1.50 including tip.

I speak Spanish to the womon at the desk who seems to understand me. She takes me to the back to speak with the man there & as I talk to him, a customer translates into English what I'm saying in Spanish. He is older, grizzley appearing, someone I would not have guessed knew about using vegetable oil for fuel, but he did!

The young man disappears into the back and comes out with another 20 litres of oil, cold used oil. YEAH!!!!

I want to run and find immediately somewhere to filter the oil but if I am to leave tomorrow or soon, I need to work on getting more oil so I decide to try my luck at a hotel. I don't want to stop too near to where I'm staying in case they say, oh, you're driving that truck that is parking illegally overnite! hahahaha

So I go to the last hotel farthest away and ask them for oil. Again, I speak Spanish with the womon at the restaurant desk, she calls a guy from the kitchen, and we speak together. They call another man who is working across the hall in the hotel lobby. He comes over and tells me they are looking to try to find some oil for me and it probably won't be very much - he gestures about a litre.

The man from the back comes back to tell me they don't have any today but to come back tomorrow. I ask if they want a container to which they reply yes. So I return to my truck and get them my largest - 5 gallon - container just in case. By the time I reach the front door, another woman has come to pick up the container from me. We say "hasta manana!"

I cross the street to the next hotel restaurant. There are 2 men hanging out at the buffet, and another at the desk. I ask them for oil in Spanish. They call another man over, and then yet another man comes out of the kitchen.

I finally make myself understood and the man from the kitchen tells me un momento. At that point, a womon who is bi-lingual appears and asks in English if she can help me.

I tell her I believe I've been helped and explain to her in English what I am doing.

People's eyes get so big when they hear you can run a vehicle on vegetable oil! Most of them really can't believe it, but then there are some - 2 thus far - that know about it already too.

The man comes out of the kitchen with a plastic gallon jug that has about 3 inches of oil in the bottom - hot oil! I am grateful for this and think about all the times when on the road when I needed just a tiny bit of oil to make it a couple of miles to the next fuel station or home or wherever!

I get out a sock and strain the oil into the Sushi oil container. Yeah!!! Cookin' with grease!

Now I have one more Spanish lesson tonite - so I could leave Hermosillo happy I've learned as much Spanish as I have - as soon as I filter the oil I have and get more oil.

Tomorrow I'll concentrate on going EVERYWHERE for oil! I guess I'm here until Friday night at least. I didn't really want to be here for Saturday and all the soldiers and police marching in the streets... hmmmm

In (the continued) search for aceite vegetal usado!

back to Jung - crossed fingers et al!

Barbara Lee does it again!!!! H.R. 6045

My Barbara Lee has done it AGAIN! If you are reading this and have a congressperson "representing" (supposedly) you in Washington D.C. PLEASE do the work you need to do to get her or him to sign onto this bill NOW!!!!! (and REALLY represent you!)

Not only does it call for the withdrawal of our military but also our horrific contractors too!

H.R. 6045 (Barbara Lee Bill) To provide that funds for operations of the Armed Forces in Afghanistan shall be obligated and expended only for purposes of providing for the safe and orderly withdrawal from Afghanistan of all members of the Armed Forces and Department of Defense contractor personnel who are in Afghanistan.

Co-Sponsors: (all returning to office in January 2011).

Rep Blumenauer, Earl [OR-3] - 9/20/2010 Rep Capuano, Michael E. [MA-8] - 9/14/2010
Rep Chu, Judy [CA-32] - 9/14/2010 Rep Conyers, John, Jr. [MI-14] - 7/30/2010
Rep Edwards, Donna F. [MD-4] - 7/30/2010 Rep Ellison, Keith [MN-5] - 7/30/2010
Rep Farr, Sam [CA-17] - 9/14/2010 Rep Filner, Bob [CA-51] - 7/30/2010
Rep Frank, Barney [MA-4] - 7/30/2010 Rep Grijalva, Raul M. [AZ-7] - 9/29/2010
Rep Honda, Michael M. [CA-15] - 7/30/2010 Rep Jackson Lee, Sheila [TX-18] - 7/30/2010
Rep Jones, Walter B., Jr. [NC-3] - 7/30/2010 Rep Lewis, John [GA-5] - 7/30/2010
Rep Maloney, Carolyn B. [NY-14] - 7/30/2010 Rep Michaud, Michael H. [ME-2] - 9/29/2010
Rep Miller, George [CA-7] - 7/30/2010 Rep Paul, Ron [TX-14] - 7/30/2010
Rep Payne, Donald M. [NJ-10] - 7/30/2010 Rep Pingree, Chellie [ME-1] - 7/30/2010
Rep Schakowsky, Janice D. [IL-9] - 7/30/2010 Rep Serrano, Jose E. [NY-16] - 9/23/2010
Rep Speier, Jackie [CA-12] - 7/30/2010 Rep Stark, Fortney Pete [CA-13] - 9/14/2010
Rep Towns, Edolphus [NY-10] - 7/30/2010 Rep Waters, Maxine [CA-35] - 7/30/2010
Rep Welch, Peter [VT] - 7/30/2010 Rep Woolsey, Lynn C. [CA-6] - 7/30/2010