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Friday June 13th, 2008

Imagine All the Chickens . . .  

  "A doctor can bury his mistakes but an architect
      can only advise his clients to plant vines.”
Frank Lloyd Wright

Hi folks,

Friday the 13th again.

Friday the 13th is considered the unluckiest of days, unless you were born on Friday the 13th, in which case it is your lucky day. The fear of Friday the 13th is called paraskavedekatriaphobia or paraskevidekatriaphobia, a specialized form of triskaidekaphobia, a phobia (fear) of the number thirteen.  Good Friday (the thirteeth) is considered especially unlucky. Italy has omitted the number 13 from its national lottery.  For reasons only know to Italians, this is especially strange because the most unlucky day in Italy is actually Fri the 17th.  Every year has at least one and at most three Fridays the 13th. In 2009, February, March and November will all have Friday the 13ths, so make a note in your diary to stay indoors. The remake of the original Friday the 13th is also planned to be released on Friday, February 13, 2009. A British Medical Journal study has shown that there is a significant increase in traffic-related accidents on Fridays the 13th.  The Mayans have predicted the world will end on Friday 13th. (Once again: stay indoors.)

On this day:

Jesus Christ was crucified.
Winston Churchill adamantly refused to travel by road or air.
A plane crashed in the Andes, and the survivors were forced to resort to cannibalism to survive.
Share prices rose on Wall Street in the last five Friday 13ths of the 1990s.
Lloyds of London stopped insuring ships launched on Friday 13 after HMS Friday, captained by a man called Friday, disappeared soon after its launch.
The Knights Templar were arrested on Friday the 13th.
Samuel Beckett , Margaret Thatcher, Fidel Castro, and Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen  were born on Friday the 13th.
Composer Arnold Schoenberg, who specialized in composing 12 tone rows, died on Friday the Thirteenth (oops!)

I was born on the 13th . .   but on Monday.   Monday the 13th doesn’t get much press.  Julius Caesar was born on Monday the 13th as was Metastasio, the poet. Maimonides, the doctor, died on Monday the 13th.  As did James Joyce. So here’s a little ‘Sicilian’ tribute to my day of birth paisano,  Mr Joyce:

"...I was a Flower of the mountain no when I put the rosemary in my hair like the Calabrian girls used or shall I wear a red no and how he kissed me under the  wall and I thought well as well why him when there's another and then I asked him with my eyes to not ask again no and then he asked me would I no to say no my Garlic Blossom and first I squeezed my hands around his throat no and pushed him away from me so he could feel my breath all onions no and his heart was going all vafanculo and no I said no I won't NO! "
 Ulysses for Sicilians, translated by Josephus the Utterer

(Those of you not familiar with Ulysses, go here: Ulysses for Dummies:
(thanks to Antigone Komodromos)


Subject: Rule 303.1
I caught a rat last night.
His crime?  He invaded my kitchen.  He invaded my kitchen and I killed him.
No doubt the rodent wished me no harm; he told me no lies; he invaded my kitchen not someone’s country.
Still, I killed him.
I did not give him a State funeral. I will not be recommending him for a medal or knighthood.
He was a rat and I killed him. O. None

(Note: Who says I don’t have interesting readers?)

Subject: -Why does Goofy stand erect while Pluto remains on all fours? They're both dogs!
aha not so fast!
Good-natured but not that bright, this cartoon character made his first appearance, somewhat disguised, as a member of the audience in "Mickey's Revue" (1932). What distinguished the character from those sitting around him was not so much his appearance but his raucous laugh. That laugh, supplied by Disney storyman, musician, and former circus clown Pinto Colvig, made such an impression on Walt Disney and his staff that the character soon began to be featured in other cartoons. Before long, Goofy was part of the gang that included Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, Clarabelle Cow, and Horace Horsecollar. In the newspaper comic strips, this new character was first given the name Dippy Dawg. A 1938 book indicated the first change to Dippy's name, "The Story of Dippy the Goof," and by 1939 the final change was made to Goofy with the release of the cartoon "Goofy and Wilbur."

Goofy was created as a human character, as opposed to Pluto, who was a pet, so he walked upright and had a speaking voice (first supplied by Colvig, and later by George Johnson, Bob Jackman, and Bill Farmer). There were 48 Goofy cartoons (primarily in the 1940s and 1950s), but he also appeared in many cartoons with Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. He was best known for his series of "How to" cartoons, where he bumbled through the explanations. In the 1950s, he appeared in several cartoons as Mr. Geef, with a wife and son. The 1990s television series "The Goof Troop" reintroduced Goofy and son, but by this time the son was Max, quite different from his earlier incarnation, and the wife was no longer on the scene.
Favorite sayings: "Gawrsh!" "Well, whaddya know ..." "A-hyuck!" "Huh?" H a l l o r a n

(Note: I know quite a few humans like Goofy so I take your point. A-hyuck!)

Hi Joe,
Subject:     Bill Henson vs Jim Henson
I agree with your heartfelt comments on the Bill Henson in your current newsletter's and in particular to your letter to the Prime Minister... however the following mistake should be fairly considered:

James Maury "Jim" Henson (September 24, 1936 – May 16, 1990) was the creator of The Muppets and the leading force behind their long creative run in the television series Sesame Street and The Muppet Show and films such as The Muppet Movie (1979)...

Bill Henson (b. 1955), the Australian contemporary photographic artist, shares nothing with the great American Puppeteer, Jim Henson, beyond the name 'Henson'. Sincerely, Geoff Hayes

(Note: Geoff, what was I thinking? Thanks for setting me straight, son.  I must have got them both confused with Bill Henson, the gay porn star.)

 Hi there Joe,
 I just want to say i agree with you about the warnings about the  P word without facts gathered and linked to anyone’s name, but I have to admit some of Henson's works give me the creeps and I consider myself to be an open person...  and I also love some of his stuff but the teenage stuff is creepy. i cant help feeling that his work is predatory... and that not all his art is infallible having said that.... did he push my buttons? did he disturb me ? is it because i am a parent? YES ......He Did... he is a master of Photography but a dark one ....it also makes me wonder- has He been molested and is trying to explain his situation through his images? it's complex.. yours truly, Kavisha Mazzella

:  Kavisha, personally, I think Henson's a bit over-focused on teens and he ought to move on but that's his particular therapy. So be it. He's making a packet from it. However, there is nothing criminal about it, as we have accepted Nabokov, DH Lawrence, Michelangelo, Picasso and a thousand other artists throughout history to set precedent.  One insight I’ve had this week is that one of the reasons it feels so uncomfortable, yet compelling, to look at some of Henson’s more controversial pictures is that the age group he is photographing is the age where we, as children, were never allowed to see the opposite sex naked. Most of us have our first serious views and experience of naked bodies from about the ages of 17-18 or older.  Or,  we see our extremely younger brothers and sisters, running around the house with their nappies off. Or, in Playboy, and magazines like that, where the nude models are all older women.  But between the ages of 14-16, we never see the opposite sex naked. So all of us have some repressed fantasies and a lack of imagery from that period of our own lives. I think some of Henson’s work pushes some of those hidden buttons in us. As, parents, of course, we feel protective because it is part of our job as parents to keep our kids concealed from each other during that difficult age transition. Jim Henson says this:  “The reason I like working with teenagers is because they represent a kind of breach between the dimensions that people cross through. The classical root of the word “adolescence” means to grow towards something. I am fascinated with that interval, that sort of highly ambiguous and uncertain period where you have an exponential growth of experience and knowledge, but also a kind of tenuous grasp on the certainties of adult life.”)

Subject:     Re: Well May We Say . . . . .
Your newsletter comes to me via Lamb's Retreat for Songwriters in Michigan...
I teach high school.  In my classroom the walls are lavished with a series of posters, "Think Different."
Ghandi, the shot of John and Yoko in bed, Amelia Earhart, and of course, Jim Henson are just a few amongst the portraits displayed in this series.  I always ask the kids, "who are these people and what do they represent" at the beginning of the school year.  Faithfully, thekids know Jim Henson.  In my generation we would have picked out John and Yoko (I usually have to tell them that John Lennon is a Beatle). Although a deviant title has been labeled to Jim Henson.  I don't believe it will endure. just my thoughts, Kollene Goheen

(Note: Kollene, I was being satirical with the Muppet Henson schtick but sometimes I think I’m too subtle for my own good.  Oh well, I’m sure JIM Henson has done SOMETHING naughty that would have made J Edgar Hoover’s wish list.  ie sticking his hand up puppets backsides all those years, and all, I mean, come on.)

Subject:  Great newsletter!
OK, re: Henson's puppets.  Are you aware there is an hit Broadway show called Avenue Q that stars Henson puppets (or very Henson-like puppets) cheerfully singing ditties like "The Internet is for Porn"? http://www.avenueq.com/  So, yeah, Henson is a GREAT children's artist, but his creations aren't above a little fooling around on the side.


re: two underaged lovers in famous songs:  
I think Donovan caught the feeling well with "Try for the Sun."
I remember loving this song when I was, mmm, sixteen, and turning into a fearless road warrior:

“We huddled in the derelict building,
Our breath turned to mist in the cold.
Our years put together counted thirty,
But our eyes told the dawn that we were old.

And who's going to be the one
To say it was no good what we done?
I dare a man to say I'm too young
For I'm going to try for the sun.” Alicia

(Note: Alicia, I guess it’s also appropriate  - along with that Donovan lyric - to add here that some of the things we did in the late 60s – mid-70s WERE illegal and would have offended our parents, not to mention got us jailed by the law, had they known. I mean: which Board of Review and Ethics approved the concept of Free Love, living on communes, and having sex with everyone, and dropping LSD and half the other droppings that was done dropped? Holy Janis, Timothy Leary, I don’t think so. Times have changed. Also, we are justly protective of our own children. We want to keep them from harm. Which is natural. But no wonder our teenagers have to keep us parents in the dark, and lead secret lives in order to find their OWN lives, and take their own life-threatening risks, as we did -  and pioneer their own unique and dangerous space – just as we were compelled to when we were their age. Rudolph Steiner, founder of the Steiner Schools, once wrote that one of the reasons kids have so many serious illnesses and fevers, in their early years, is to help burn away their parents' egos which threatens to suffocate them sometimes.)

Hey Joe,
Subject:     danger underneath the moon
Interesting stuff...
danger started out to be a song about charles starkweather the notorious
murderer from indiana and his girlfriend... was her name caril fugate?
my idea to write this, i'd just read a 'true crime' book about them
and had also i think seen the movie with martin somebody and sissy spacek...
i often write themes (after the fact)to movies or plays i've seen

my thought was that it would be like "the ballad of bonnie and clyde",
"jesse james" or those rancheros from texico that glorify druglords
a broadside or like "thunder road"

in fact,
she WAS fourteen
he WAS nineteen
i like immediately changed their ages
"she was seventeen years old
he was slightly older" was the original line from me
i thought that the real ages sounded creepy too
tho that was the least of their problems god knows

however steve was like: let's be historically correct
and i thought
well maybe i'm just a dirty old man
and other folks won't perceive it like i do
(steve, for instance, presumably didn't)
he was like
honi soit qui mal y pense (sp?)

my feeling:
they were both a whole lot younger than
i'll ever be again
and now they both seem like lost children to me
Sincerely, Michael Smith

(Note: Folks, for those of you who missed last week’s newsletter, I examined the lyrics to the song ‘Danger’ in Songwriting Workshop 21.  Michael is one of the three co-writers of ‘Danger’, along with Steve Goodman and Sean Kelly.  He is also the author of the well-known and much covered song, ‘The Dutchman.’  My newsletter was forwarded to him by a mutual friend and he was gracious enough to write me with his comments on the origins of the song.

I suggested to him that everything he wrote to me in his letter, about Starkweather and Caril, in my opinion, ought to have been in the lyrics to ‘Danger’, to make it clear what the song was really about. As it stands, although Starkweather and Caril might have been the original inspiration, the final song is actually about something quite different. I suppose, with a strong introduction, it would work ‘live’ alright, but I've always felt that the most effective songs have intros and explanations built into the lyrics already - so they will still make sense in a hundred years - with out the need for an introduction.

But Michael Smith should get a Gold Star for even attempting to co-write a song with two other strong-willed songwriters.   With so much spitballin’  it would have been hard to see the big picture and maintain a singular vision. Kind of like a three headed guppy. Or a menage-a-trout for people in wheelchairs with pencils stuck to their heads. Stephen King, in his great book, ‘On Writing,’  would probably have advised to put that kind of first draft material in a drawer, don’t look at it for six months, and then take it out and revise it with a cooler perspective. To make sure you are not leaving a lot of it in your head, and in your discussions, rather than putting it on the page, where it belongs.

Michael’s humorous reference, to what Steve Goodman’s reply to my comments might have been, ‘honi soit qui mal y pense’, comes from the Old French, and translates to ‘Shame to him who thinks evil of this,’  or ‘Evil be to him who evil thinks.’  The motto originates with the Order of the Garter, and appears on the British Coat of Arms. It's considered a reiteration of God's words to Abram: "I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee." Genesis 12: 3
   Legend has it, at a ball, Joan Countess of Salisbury lost one of her garters. Seeing her embarrassment, King Edward III retrieved it, bound it to his own leg and rebuked onlookers by saying, "Honi soit qui mal y pense." King Edward later founded the Order of the Garter in 1348. Personally, I wouldn’t have trusted the King with my 12 year old daughter, much less my 95 year old grandmother, but Michael Smith’s open-minded reply to me indicates that it was most likely Goodman who needed Dr Phil’s assistance in seeing the bigger picture regarding this lyric. But, as we were all young once, and as most of us have some under-baked  ‘juvenalia’ among our songwriting efforts, to Steve, who has long since passed on, "requiescat in pace.")

Bill Henson Case Collapses

New South Wales police will not prosecute Bill Henson over his controversial photos.
The Classification Board this week cleared a number of photographs that were were among those seized by police from the Roslyn Oxley9 gallery in Sydney last month.
This morning, reports suggested Crown prosecutors would tell NSW Police that there is no case for prosecuting Henson for child pornography.
The National Gallery of Australia (NGA) has also been given the all clear over its collection of images by the controversial photographer.
Last week the NGA became the latest gallery caught up in the Bill Henson storm after the Australian Federal Police (AFP) examined its collection and decided to assess the works.
The NGA has a collection of 79 Henson photographs, none of which are currently on public display.
The AFP has confirmed there had been no breaches of ACT law.
"The AFP has concluded an assessment of images ... at a Canberra art gallery storage facility," an AFP spokesman said.
"On the basis of that assessment, no breaches of ACT law relating to child pornography has been established."

(Note: Even the new Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd - whom I voted for as an alternative to John Howard -  [Howard of the Bush-Howard-Blair Axis of Arseholes  - the real child pornographer Iraqi Baby-Killers -  two down, Bush to go - that Howard]  came out with an immature knee jerk reaction against Henson - calling his work 'utterly revolting'  and now is looking extremely white-bread undereducated and foolish. - but unapologetic, as is the tradition with Australian prime ministers.  Man, as long as these wazoos can balance the budget and keep us out of aggressive war - that's their JOB  - and how about leaving the ART part to the professionals, thanks. Here is a brilliant website with about 500 photographs of  nudes from all over the world. Bill Henson is included among other internationally renown figures such as Robert Mapplethorpe, Man Ray,  Annie Leibovitz and dozens of other remarkable artists.

Dennis Kucinich Sums It Up

Dennis Kucinich deserves our thanks today.
I'm not a disgruntled supporter from the primaries. I agreed with most of what he had to say, but it was obvious he wasn't going to be the nominee.
No, he deserves our thanks and gratitude for standing on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives this afternoon and reading the thirty-five Articles of Impeachment of George W. Bush.
Even those who say, "We must look forward, we know how bad the Bush administration has been, but why waste our time on this," must stop and listen.
The breadth and length of Kucinich's articles are astonishing. They sum up Bush's evil reign succinctly and to hear them recited been said on the floor of Congress makes me wonder how American could have possibly put up with this despotic murderer and thief for so long. (article)

The Thirty-five Articles of Impeachment of George W. Bush

Meanwhile, back in Australia . . . . . .

* Howard Accused of War Crimes Over Iraq Troop Deployment
A legal brief has been sent to the International Criminal Court (ICC) alleging former prime minister John Howard committed a war crime by sending troops to Iraq.
A loose alliance of peace activists, lawyers, academics and politicians is behind the brief, organised by the ICC Action group in Melbourne. Organiser Glen Floyd says Mr Howard should be held accountable for sending troops to a war not sanctioned by the United Nations.
"We have produced a 52-page brief of evidence which states to the chief prosecutor of the criminal court that we allege John Howard's actions are war crimes under article 8 of the Rome Statute," he said.
Democrats Senator Lyn Allison says the legal brief sent to the ICC is justified.
Senator Allison, who is one of several eminent people supporting the move, says accountability is important.

Brief of Evidence and 41 Affliliates

*Charge Howard With War Crimes
FORMER Malaysian prime minister Mahathir Mohamad has called for ex-prime minister John Howard and other Western leaders to be charged with war crimes over the conflict in Iraq.
*Howard War Charges Bid
AN AUSTRALIAN doctors' group is pushing to have former prime minister John Howard charged with war crimes for sending troops to Iraq. The Medical Association for the Prevention of War said the war was illegal because it was not backed by the United Nations.

*Howard 'Should Be Tried for War Crimes'
Former Liberal Party federal president John Valder says Prime Minister John Howard should be tried and punished for war crimes over Australia's involvement in the Iraq conflict.
(thanks to Bill Lemke)


Mick and Paddy were walking home from the pub.
Mick says to Paddy, "I can’t be bothered to walk all that way."
"I know," says Paddy, "but we've no money for a cab and we've missed the last bus home."
"We could steal a bus from the depot," Mick suggests.
They arrive at the bus depot and Mick tells Paddy to go in and get a bus while he keeps a look-out.
After shuffling around for ages, Mick shouts, "Paddy, what are you doing? Have you not found one yet?"
Paddy shouts back, "I can't find a No. 91"
"Oh Jesus Christ, ye thick stupid sod, just take the No. 14 and we'll walk home from the roundabout!”
(thanks to  Andrew Bicknell)

Sydney Sets World Pizza Record

Australia has a new culinary world record to boast about - but probably not too loudly.
It's for the world's longest line of pizzas, beating the previous record set in the United States by just one metre.
Thousands of spectators flocked to the Italian hub of Leichhardt, in Sydney's inner-west, to witness the record - 826 freshly cooked pizzas, stretching 221 metres.
Twenty-five chefs used 500kg of flour, 250 litres of tomato sauce and 350kg of mozzarella cheese.
After the Guinness World Record adjudicator deemed the record broken, the pizzas where donated to the food rescue organisation, OzHarvest, to feed Sydney's homeless and disadvantaged.
Italian cruise ship company Costa Cruises sponsored the event, donating $10 for every metre of pizza to the children's charity, Variety.
Including donations, more than $5,000 was raised.
The previous pizza line record of 220 metres was set just three weeks ago in Fort Rustico, Florida.

Same Road, New Chickens

 The chicken crossed the road because it was time for a CHANGE!
 The chicken wanted CHANGE!
 My friends, that chicken crossed the road because he recognized the
 need to engage in cooperation and dialogue with all the chickens on the
 other side of the road.
 When I was First Lady, I personally helped that little chicken to
 cross the road. This experience makes me uniquely qualified to ensure
 -- right from Day One! -- that every chicken in this country gets the
 chance it deserves to cross the road. But then, this really isn't
 about me.......
 The problem we have here is that this chicken won't realize that he
 must first deal with the problem on 'THIS' side of the road before it
 goes after the problem on the 'OTHER SIDE' of the road. What we need to
 do is help him realize how stupid he's acting by not taking on his
 'CURRENT' problems before adding 'NEW' problems.
 Well, I understand that the chicken is having problems, which is why
 he wants to cross this road so bad. So instead of having the chicken
 learn from his mistakes and take falls, which is a part of life, I'm
 going to give this chicken a car so that he can just drive across the
 road and not live his life like the rest of the chickens.

We have reason to believe there is a chicken, but we have not yet been
allowed to have access to the other side of the road.
Although I voted to let the chicken cross the road, I am now against
it! It was the wrong road to cross, and I was misled about the
chicken's intentions. I am not for it now, and will remain against it.

 No one called me to warn me which way that chicken was going. I had a
 standing order at the Farmer's Market to sell my eggs when the price
 dropped to a certain level. No little bird gave me any insider

  In my day we didn't ask why the chicken crossed the road.
  Somebody told us the chicken crossed the road, and that was good enough.
 Isn't that interesting? In a few moments, we will be listening to the
 chicken tell, for the first time, the heartwarming story of how it
 experienced a serious case of molting, and went on to accomplish its
 life long dream of crossing the road.
And two more originals:

 Imagine all the chickens, I wonder if you can,
No roads before us, around us only land . . . . .

JOE DOLCE: 'Ah, Shaddap-a You Beak!'


Technically, these two folks aren’t historically famous -  as yet  - but as I mentioned Bill Henson’s gay porn star doppelganger, I thought you might like to know about two other Dolces who are tearing up the internet at the moment:

*** CHRISTINE DOLCE is a model and an ex-cosmetologist. A combination of Italian/Irish/Cherokee Indian, she has over 1 million friends at Myspace. Nicknames: ForBiddeN, and The Queen of MyspaceMost Famous Quote:  "It's still weird to me. It's like it's not even reality. Even going out now and having fans, I'm like, 'Wait, I have fans?'"

*** BAMBIE DOLCE is a Hungarian porn star. aka. Henrietta, Lyza Black, and Aurora Dolce. Profession: Actress (un huh!) Most Famous Quote:  "Oh God!”


Chocolate Beetnik Cake

The grated beet keeps this delicious chocolate cake moist, and the peanut oil gives a subtle overtone.

   •    2 cups all-purpose flour
    •    1 teaspoon baking soda
    •    2 teaspoons baking powder
    •    1/2 teaspoon salt
    •    2 cups sugar
    •    1/2 cup cocoa powder
    •    4 large eggs, beaten
    •    1 cup peanut oil
    •    3 cups grated cooked beets
    •    a little milk (if needed)
    •    2 teaspoons vanilla essence (or scraped vanilla bean, if you prefer.)
    •    powdered sugar, optional

Preheat oven to 350°. (Mark 3.) Combine flour, soda, baking powder, salt, sugar and cocoa in a bowl; set aside. In a mixing bowl, combine the eggs and oil. Beat in vanilla and continue beating until well blended. Slowly beat in dry ingredients until well mixed; stir in beets. If the mixture is too thick, add a little milk.
Pour into 2 greased and dusted 9 inch cake pans with removable bottoms. Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until a fork or wooden skewer can be removed from the center cleanly. Place on a wire rack to cool.

For the cream cheese icing:
250g cream cheese
60g unsalted butter, soft
200g icing sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence

Beat all ingredients together until smooth.

For the chocolate ganache
250g heavy cream
250g dark or semi-sweet chocolate,  in small bits, or chopped
2 tble sugar
2 tble butter
grated white chocolate, to decorate

Heat the heavy cream, 2 tablespoons sugar, and 2 tablespoons butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil. Place the chocolate in a separate small stainless steel bowl in a pan of hot water and bring to the boil, stirring constantly as the chocolate begins to melt. When the chocolate is about half melted, remove pan from heat and pour the boiling cream over the chocolate and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Stir until smooth. Keep at room temperature until ready to use.

To assemble:  Place one layer of cake on a large board or dish. Spread a layer of icing evenly over the top. Place the second cake layer on top. Spread the ganache over the top and sides. Grate the white chocolate over the top to finish.  Using two spatulas, lift the cake carefully and place onto the serving dish.


His orders came through on September 11th at dawn.
The planes would attack their targets according to plan.
Some would aim for the centres of commerce,
Some would strike at the military's heart,
But to him fell the mission's most lofty task.

The President himself, the ultimate symbol of power,
Was his target, Oh, they would make that great nation cower.
This regime of infidels who'd strayed from the truth,
Their arrogant leader elected by fools,
The so-called 'democracy' that broke all the unwritten rules.

His team was well-chosen, these brave faithful men would not flinch,
Though their task was so daunting, the stakes high but so too the risks,
But the men were well trained, equipped and paid by powerful friends far away,
With right on their side, they prayed they would triumph that day.

Every detail in place his task now to follow the plan.
His fate and that of his men was in his hands.
With steely resolve, they boarded the plane,
As they city approached, he flew low and aimed,
And prayed to his god that his aim would be true.

The attack succeeded by evening the president lay dead.
His palace destroyed and these are the last words he said,
As he spoke to his people on the radio,
He said: 'I'll defend our democracy with my own life,'
He could have fled but he chose to stand firm when the bomber arrived.

So Salvadore Allende of Chile was murdered that day,
And the junta then slaughtered thousands who stood in their way,
And the US was there behind the scenes,
When democracy died, and terror unleashed,
On September 11th, 1973.

(Written by Keith Mckenry and Bruce Watson,
Recorded by Joe Dolce, ‘The Wind Cries Mary,’ 2007)

Allende: Struggles, Legacy and Today's Dilemmas

On 26 June 2008, it will be the 100th anniversary of the birth of Salvador Allende.

Salvador Allende started his political life as a medical student,
leader of the Students Federation of Chile (FECH) and founder of the Socialist
Party of Chile in 1933. He went on to become Minister of Health during the
government of the Popular Front in 1938 and Secretary General of the
Socialist Party of Chile. He was a member of the House of Representatives
between 1937 and 1945, Senator from 1945 to 1970; became President of the
Senate; and was presidential candidate four times: 1952-1958 and 1964, until
winning with the coalition of Popular Unity in 1970.

Allende is the most universal political figure in Chile's political history.
He galvanised emancipating forces; he was of an impeccable behaviour, with a
unique capacity to see reality detached from ideology.

Allende described himself as a "socialist". To be a socialist for him was
"to be a man of the 20th century; father of the man of the 21st century".
His leadership was built on a constant struggle, due to his commitment to
the workers and the peasantry, in a Chile exploited by foreign capital and
the country's oligarchy. He travelled extensively throughout Chile to the
most remote areas, where people heard him say he was not seeking votes, but
consciences with whom to build Chile's future. Allende's government saw deep
changes in many areas of Chilean society.

On Tuesday 11 September 1973, Allende died in a military coup against his
government. Even though many were the efforts to obliterate his memory,
Allende's legacy is today ever present. On the Centenary of his birth, we
remember our beloved President.
Comité Centenario Salvador Allende - Sydney
(thanks to Russell Hannah)