Mudcat Café message #3509128
The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #150286 Message #3509128
Posted By: Jim Dixon
26-Apr-13 - 09:28 AM
Thread Name: Songs About Thatcher
Subject: Lyr Add: ECONOMIC MIRACLE (MacColl/Seeger)
This is my transcription from the recording that I heard on Spotify. As an American, a few terms seem strange to me and may need to be corrected. Also, I was often uncertain when to capitalize—that is, how to distinguish the names of specific corporations from generic terms. And I'm not sure I can trust my spell-checker when it's set to "English (UK)."
As sung by Ewan MacColl and Peggy Seeger on "Naming of Names" (1990)
1. You'd never guess, but once upon a time, this land of ours
Was sick, infirm, and doddering, robbed of all its powers.
People lay in bed all day,
Only arose to collect their pay.
Life for them was just a bowl of flowers.
2. They bred like rabbits, coupling day and night,
Claimed the child allowance as their right,
Fell sick of diseases of all descriptions
Just to collect the free prescriptions,
Often broke a limb just out of spite.
3. Eye and dental treatment they were free,
Part of the welfare-state conspiracy.
Cheap housing and cheap transport,
They were tricks to lead us all astray
And see life as an endless holiday.
4. The poor were disaffected, with ideas above their station,
Like jobs for all, and free school meals, a decent education.
The writing it was on the wall,
Then was heard the clarion call,
And Finchley's queen rode over the horizon.
5. "I hope to God," she cried, "I'm not too late
To perform a miracle and set things straight,
To fight the good fight and raise the flag
For a new society of grab(?)
And fashion the modern cost-effective state."
6. She'd need(?) the unions in the crutch(?) with scorn,
Saying, "I mean to do what I have sworn,"
Shatter the night with fractured vowels,
Gripped and twisted the nation's bowels,
And the economic miracle was born.
7. And then the January bumper-sale was organised,
And patriotic spears(?) and multinationals were advised
That the country was up for grabs and so
Whoever turned up with a pile of dough
Would get a chunk of Britain as the prize.
8. She stood behind the counter full of zeal,
Sold telephones, Rolls-Royce, and British Steel.
She sold what wasn't hers to sell,
Like British Airways, gas as well,
And threw in north sea oil to clinch the deal.
9. When she talks of future plans, she waxes lyrical,
While some of the rest of us become hysterical.
Water, DHSS, and coal mines
Are in the privatisation pipeline
Along with railways, the army, prisons, Royal Ordnance, the electricity system, education, et cet'ra, et cet'ra, and even perhaps the air we breathe—
And this is the lady's economic miracle.