Saturday, September 27, 2008

arlo guthrie nails it

So, we've now been to the local branch of our bank, and All Is (ostentatiously) Well, with no evidence of their precipitous collapse, take-over, shut-down, and buy-out except that FDIC announcements about how safe your money is have discretely popped up everywhere.

Recently Janice and I have felt the odd urge to sing snatches from an old song whenever we hear financial news about the latest bailout. Though I know it from Arlo Guthrie's performance on PRECIOUS FRIENDS [1982], it was originally written [circa 1979?] by Tom Paxton (as Guthrie himself is careful to note). See if it sounds more applicable than is quite comfortable:

"Oh the price of gold is rising out of sight
And the dollar is in sorry shape tonight
What the dollar used to get us
Now won't buy a head of lettuce
No the economic forecast isn't bright

"But amidst the clouds I spot a shining ray
I can even glimpse a new and better way
And I've devised a plan of action
Worked it down to the last fraction
And I'm going into action here today


"I am changing my name to Chrysler
I am going down to Washington D.C.
I will tell some power broker
What they did for Iacocca
Will be perfectly acceptable for me
I am changing my name to Chrysler
I am headed for that great receiving line
So when they hand a million grand out
I'll be standing with my hand out
Yes sir I'll get mine

"When my creditors are screaming for their dough (for their dough)
I'll be proud to tell them all where they can go
They won't have to scream and holler
They'll be paid to the last dollar
Where the endless streams of money seem to flow

"I'll be glad to tell them what they all can do
It's a matter of a simple form or two
It's not just renumeration
It's a liberal education
Ain't you kind of glad that I'm in debt to you?


"Since the first amphibians crawled out of the slime (of the slime)
We've been struggling in an unrelenting climb
We were hardly up and walking
Before money started talking
And it's sad that failure is an awful crime

"Well it's been that way for a millennium or two (um or two)
But now it seems that there's a different point of view
If you're a corporate titanic
And your failure is gigantic
Down in Congress there's a safety net for you


"I Am Changing My Name To Chrysler" by Tom Paxton, as performed by Arlo Guthrie.


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