c’mon, people

from an upbeat tale of excellent anti-war, pro-labor action:

The Union Ferry’s Steamin’ Up
For the 55 union ferry workers fired
from the Alcatraz touring lines. And
the solidarity of the San Francisco
Anti-War movement with them:
January 27, 2007.

As far out as you wanna travel,
on legs, in the saddle, by car or in the air,
just remember: down here
where privatizing snakes slither,
we all ride the Union ferry
to the Rock and back,
to the Rock and back and forth
with keel sharp enough to lop
them sumabitchin’ vipers.

Their tongues are tied to the war-bone,
to the murderous shock-and-oil bone,
to the profits-at-any-price bone.
Their fangs are honed in the global apple
where their venom lies.

C’mon, mates, the union ferry’s steamin’ up
to split their army so that putrescent
serpents’ nest that has little left but unwilling guns
falls powerless at last. And you get back
what they ordered stolen. And we can all
go to work on the constructions
of a Rock to jail those
Big House and White House
slimy reptiles for ages.

—Jack Hirschman

ultimately, it’s shit like this that gives us all nervous diarrhea when we hear tell of “political art,” right? it’s also indicative of an icky, put-on tendency within labor’s political culture – I abbreviate it in the caricature of Old Left Johnson – that makes me think of nothing so much as the most collegiate players on the “folk revival” scene.

‘completely shallow/bourgeois of me to mention, i know.


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