Songs from the CD “Food, Clothing, & Glaciers”:

Ballad of BP and the Massey Massacre

I won’t be making the trip
To visit Don Blankenship
In his prison cell
And I don’t wish him well
Won’t visit Tony Hayward
He’s way to wayward
Though seeing him in jail
Is my holy grail

No it isn’t fine to operate a mine
When coal is the cancer of the earth
But to sacrifice 29
To increase your bottom line
Brother you’re asking for it
Into the patrol car, officer, floor it!

And the only proper plea
For drilling in the sea
With no referee
Is insanity
But on second thought I guess
We really ought to press
Charges including reckless endangerment,
In the presence of clear and present danger
He went straight to
manslaughter, sea slaughter, shore slaughter
Killing of land and air and water, so…

Geithner Fit the Battle at A.I.G.

Once I built a mortgage, made it run, made it race against time
Once I built a mortgage, now it’s done,
Brother, can you spell sub-prime

Once in sharkskin suits gee we looked swell
Full of that Yankee Doodly…don’t
Half a million fools went into debt hell
I was the guy with the loan
Say don’t you remember they called me Alan
Hank Paul Larry and Tim
Say don’t you remember, I’m your pal
Brother, can you spare a diamond

When citizens default, I triple-lock my vault
But some of my homies are too big to fail
Supersize their bonus, on the poor I’ll put the onus
Anything to keep my broker’s ass out of that jail

Unprecedented failure of our national securities
We must discover who could be to blame
Could be Osama, Obama, or your mama
Heads we win, tails you lose
Main Street’s cool but Wall Street rules
Won’t you purchase our paper? Please do, I insist!
If you don’t like it buddy, hey, default swap this!
Paulson fit the battle at Goldman-Sachs
And Wall Street’s tumblin down

If there’s no remaining capital what happens to our ism
I never thought I’d ever see the day
When government has a role to play
But it’s true we’re all set
We can wash away the debt
And profit if not learn from our collapse
I love shooting craps

Housing bubbles, Don’t you whine
Makes me happy, Like a land mine

Lehman was lynched Merilly in the oh so Stern bear market
Bail out the banks and offer thanks, don’t grouse
The economy’s just lost one half its worth
And you’ve only lost your house
Profit’s all gone
It was the era of the get
Now it’s time for socialism of the debt

As for the paradox of deleveraging
Which leads to alcoholic beveraging
The way to explain it, explain it to you nice is
That the selling of trash drives down prices

We want a clean plan, not just a mean plan
Why penalize the poor
Rich people who have lost more
Than you mortgage moochers ever could have
It’s not like the sky is falling
Though it’s true your roof is gone
All is not lost but as it says in the sonnet
Doggone it, we’re working on it

There’s no shortage of reportage on our mortgage meltdown so
Why not keep the next phase of the bailout on the down low
You’d never miss a million and you cannot spell quazillion
So why not leave it up to those who caused it, those who lost it,
Those who reverse santa claus’d it
Who believe in the American Dream
Especially the part about the Ponzi Scheme

A nation of whiners gets no golden parachute
When we’re through you will be lucky if you’ve got a birthday suit
If we knew in advance what we were doing
it would be called mergers and precognitions
But we didn’t and we don’t so it’s mergers and demolitions
depositions, inquisitions, extraditions

So what if we were all in a hypnotic trance
From which we awoke with the collapse of the tallest towers of finance
Rome wasn’t bilked in a day
I know I drove this country into a train wreck
But I feel a sudden need for a a blank check
Please won’t you buy my………dreck
Have no fear
We won’t let it happen again
This year

Your Car Is Disgusting

Your car is disgusting, your car is a war crime
Your car is in bad taste, according to me

Your camouflage clothing is a devious wrap
Almost didn’t see you in all that Green Beret crap

You cut quite a figure – it sure makes me meek
I’m shocked if not awed by your massacre chic

The Clear Channel Stadium only broadcasts one game
Down at Dow Diamond it’s burnt flesh this time o year
Coors Field has a rule now, they only serve Nazi beer

You think that you’re different, because in your car
You turn off hate radio, And turn on NPR
We take White House press releases
Then we read them back to you!

You wish you could change things, But you don’t know how
With an actual news source, You’d have Democracy Now

At Pizza Hut Park, they really do it in style
At Fifth Third Ballpark well, you do the math
At Home Depot Soccer Stadium, you fix the game yourself

In the land of free enterprise, the stores are all chains
They replace all community with capital gains

You allow ads all over, Tell me who is to blame
Have you at long last sir, no sense of decency or shame

Down at Whataburger Field the pitcher is on his greasy perch
Me I’m waitin’ for the Wal-mart Institute of Labor Rights Research
Me I’m just waitin’ for the First Coca-Cola Methodist Church

Everything is Fine In Jena

Everything was fine in Jena
Before they came around
From Michigan and Harlem and all them brown towns
A rising tide lifts all boats
David Duke got all our votes
Everything is fine in Jena

There ain’t a single thing a white can do
That a black can’t do in Jena too.
Except live in a nice house on a nice street
Accumulated wealth over generations
You can’t call that a racist nation
Everything is fine in Jena.

We don’t have a race problem here.
It’s not about color, it’s about crime and fear
Black kids wanta sit by a white tree
Sounds to me like a crime spree
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again
I can end your life with the stroke of a pen.
Everything is fine in Jena

Don’t tell me you don’t do the same
Cause your New York Bell had a different name
Mychal’s in jail, Sean’s six feet under
So it goes, that’s the situation, you can’t call that a racist nation
Everything is fine in America

Used to have an underground railroad,
Now they’re railroaded here at home
Just because it’s a prettified plantation
You can’t call that a racist nation
Everything is fine
You can’t call that a racist nation
Everything is fine in Jena

Pity The Nation-First They Came-I Don’t Fight For Conquerors

Pity the nation whose people are sheep,
whose shepherds mislead them off the deep end of history
Pity the nation whose leaders are liars, whose sages are silenced,
whose bigots haunt the airwaves urging more violence

Pity the nation that raises not its voice
except to praise conquerors
and bullies and say there’s no choice
and aims to rule the world by force and torture.
Pity the nation that knows no language but its own
no culture but its own
Pity the nation whose breath is money
and sleeps the sleep of the too well fed
Pity the nation — oh, pity the people who allow their rights to erode
their freedoms washed away
My country, tears of thee, sweet land of liberty

First they came for the Communists, and I said nothing
Because I could never be a part of that party
Then they came for the unions, but I said not a thing
Cause I wasn’t in a union and what charges could they bring?
Then they came for the Jews and I did not speak up
Because I was not a Jew, and besides, what could one man do?

And then they came for me, I said no! This cannot be
Well I spoke up, but no one was left to speak for me
Well I spoke up but no one was left to speak for me

I didn’t fight for the Romans I fought for the Christians and Greece
But when Christians turned into Crusaders
I prayed for their tribes to decrease

And I didn’t fight for the Spanish,
French, Portuguese or Dutch
When their ships sailed into the Indies
I said look but do not touch

And I didn’t fight for the English
When the colonies had to go
But I have to say, the very next day
I was fightin for Geronimo

And I don’t like to kill
Never have and never will
But I will fight for freedom
Though the battle be uphill
And I don’t fight for conquerors
Even if they’re presidents
They try to buy me with dollars
They must think I’ve got no sense
And I don’t keep my silence
When my country bombs a town
Cause I don’t fight for conquerors
I fight to bring them down

I didn’t fight for the Ottomans
Or the empire of the czar
When they asked me to kill in their colonies
I said who do you think you are?

And I didn’t fight for the Nazis
No, I fought for the Jews
And when Israel asked me to conquer
You know I had to refuse

I didn’t crown the Shah of Iran
Greek colonels or a butcher in Zaire
Didn’t bank on Franco or apartheid
Or any who ruled by fear

I didn’t overthrow Chile
Slaughter peasants in El Salvador
And when they went in with shock and awe
I knew exactly what it was for

I didn’t send men to be tortured
Leave their families living in dread
I didn’t build prisons all over the world
And pretend it was freedom I spread

Yes they say they’re spreading democracy
With their soldiers and CIA
Is that why they propped up Mr. Marcos,
Suharto, Duvalier

Vietnam and Iraq, I protested
While all of my Presidents lied
When Presidents stoop to conquer
I’m on the other side

Songs from Shrub & Lippman Live in Manhattan (Kansas):