Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Solidarity Begins at Home

I first sang this song two years ago, when the USPS tried to fire Tom because of his union work. (Of course, that's not what they said, but who are we kidding?) It was—and is—my love song to him. I know, I know, freedom doesn't require "getting you a man," and many have written more woman-empowering, woman-friendly verses to substitute for this one, but I can't help it. I love this verse just the way Woody wrote it. Tom was so tickled when I first sang it to him. He threw his head back and laughed and laughed with his huge bark of a laugh. I'm behind him a bazillion percent, and being in this together makes us both very much stronger.

Tom has spent most of the month of August in Norman, Oklahoma. The USPS sent him there to learn how to fix a machine that doesn't work and that they probably won't ever use. This kind of management decision is not remotely unusual at the USPS. Over and over and over again low-level managers (and by "low-level" I mean "slithering-on-the-ground") make ludicrous decisions that make no sense and just piss money down the drain. There are absolutely no negative repercussions for them, and sometimes there are even rewards. And yet the USPS is crying to Congress about its supposed fiscal crisis.

It sure looks to me, and to many others, like the folks in charge are deliberately running the USPS into the ground. I reckon they can't wait for it to go belly up so they can chop the remains up into little pieces and sell them at a bargain to their cronies. The workers be damned. The people who count on their small rural post offices be damned. The U.S. economy be damned. Somehow they think that if they line their pockets and those of a few of their buds, nothing else matters. I feel sorry for those bastards living their sad little miserable lives. They don't have a clue about what's really important.

While I'm waiting to pick Tom up at the airport on Saturday morning, this will be running through my head:
You gals who want to be free, just take a tip from me;
Get you a man who's a union man and join the ladies' auxiliary.
Married life ain't hard when you got a union card,
A union man has a happy life when he's got a union wife.
Woody was right in one really important respect: Solidarity begins at home! Maybe someday I'll post a video of me singing it, but for now, here's a clip of Woody himself singing my favorite verse.

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