- Ion Zupcu
Lo, yon derivative swaps have taken wing.
’Tis an ode to spring. ’Tis of banks we sing.
Oh so recently, richly, wildly over-inflated,
their lending rooms are now tightly constipated.
But, “O Goldman,” and also “O Sachs,”
know that the government has your backs,
we’ll restore your riches with an extra tax
as you lobby to be sure regulations stay lax.
Free trade runs free like a berserk lawn mower
clipping workpeople’s wages lower and lower.
No cause to complain, to whine or to bitch.
Be happy that somewhere a corporation grows rich.
Jobs are outsourced, shipped across the wide sea,
we can live on our credit in the land of the free,
borrow against businesses, our homes and our land,
keep our heads burrowed down deep in the sand.
How did this happen, how did it come to be?
And what the bloody hell is AIG?
If you had lost every cent in a mad enterprise
gone bankrupt believing in your own lies,
we’d leave you to starve in stark misery,
capitalist theory says that’s the way it should be.
But ’tis not you, ’tis of the banks that we sing.
So save them, save them, that’s our ode to spring.
It should be a comedy, it should be funny.
So it would be, if they lost their own money.
Who is responsible, where is the onus
when the bigger the loss is, the bigger the bonus?
Who is to blame, and what is the cause?
Can you steal that much without breaking laws?
Is there a dungeon, dull, dreary, and dank
for the bankers who laugh all the way to the bank?
But ho! And yet!
Should not an ode to spring be about hope?
Renaissance and renewal should be the trope.
The long winter is o’er, so dreary and sick,
we’re out of the Bush and away from the Dick.
We’re out of the time when lunatics reigned,
a league of looters who loved torture and pain.
They were the war against civilization.
So let the sun shine on the Obama nation.
Stupid has triumphed so often and long,
it’s hard to believe good sense can grow strong.
Now is the moment, yes, now is the time,
but do it in prose, best not do it in rhyme.
Now that it’s bright, so sunny and warm,
it’s time for new growth, time to reform.
Where should we look? Where must we focus
so each new idea springs up like a crocus?
Health care should be first on the list.
If you look at the numbers you’ll really get pissed.
France and Italy, their health care’s the best.
We spend double, yet we get far, far less.
Where’s all the money? The lucre, the dough,
the gold, the whole roll, where does it go?
Our health care is not at all about health,
it’s an IV tube that feeds into corporate wealth.
Is being number one good cause for celebration?
We’re the number one incarceration nation!
One in every hundred is now behind bars,
away from the sun, the moon, and the stars.
School budgets get cut, education goes down
so we can build a new jail in everyone’s town.
But we’re broke and prisons are very expensive.
There’s got to be something more cost effective.
It’s got to get worse before it gets better,
Yes, America is the world’s leading debtor.
It sounds a platitude from dear old Polonious,
but debts upon debts become very onerous.
It reeks of rhetoric, it sounds like malarkey
but we’re being looted by our own oligarchy.
The lesson is tragic, yet once again funny:
rich people can’t be trusted to handle their money.
Glaciers are melting, leaving nothing that’s polar.
When will we wake up and start being solar,
geothermal, and wind, and a bit of conservation
for a healthier planet and the wealth of the nation?
Big money subverts and corrupts all it touches.
When will we learn to see what too much is?
One key to it all: Give the rich higher taxes.
It may sound perverse, but that’s what the facts is.
But ho! And yet!
’Tis an ode to spring.
It is of ourselves that we should sing.
Larry Beinhart is the author of Salvation Boulevard.