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The Ballad of HPAE Local 5058

from United Earth League of Quarantine Aerobics by Chad Matheny

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"The Ballad of HPAE Local 5058"

In 2019, just before the Great Virus,
you made a few changes to the paycheck machine.
We've been here awhile, and we know what you're up to,
but we'll keep this hospital healthy and clean.

You can hide all your profits in offshore accounts.
You can scramble our hours and move money around.
You can plaster our picture all over the town.
But you can't shut our union down.

Our president went to defend a good worker
who you had harrassed to put fear in our hearts.
For this he was fired, and we'll never forget it.
Remember, boss: this is how wildcats start.

You can lower our pay, you can shorten our breaks.
You can slander our name and expect us to shake.
You can nickel-and-dime us until we're all old,
but this union will never fold.

We workers who fight to defend all from sickness
will never stop caring for people in need.
But consider this warning, remember it well:
we'll not be extorted by corporate greed.

You can fire our leaders and cut off supply.
You can save a few bucks and watch innocents cry.
You can break every law. You can cheat. You can lie.
But this union will never die.

You put locks on a stockpile of our PPE. (?!?)
That tactic's not fooling me.

You can hide all your profits in offshore accounts.
You can scramble our hours and move money around.
You can plaster our picture all over this town.
But you can't shut our union down.
No, you can't shut our union down.
No, you can't shut our union down.

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from United Earth League of Quarantine Aerobics, released April 14, 2020

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