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In Praise of Famous Men (and Women)

Ewan MacColl
Language: English



Praise famous men and Attila the Hen
Who have sworn to restore Britain's glory
When a man knew his place a nd the whole island race
Used to flock to the polls to vote Tory

Ah, those were the days when the hearts were ablaze
Inspired by our glorious mission
When the princes of Ind didn't dare to break wind
Unless they’d got Britain's permission!

Let us praise Maggie Thatcher, there's no-one can match her
At making loud threats against shirkers
(A term that embraces all union members
And ninety-percent of all workers)

She says that a picket’s not British, not cricket
Shop-stewards are all Commie traitors
They should line up the lot to be bloody well shot
With Asians and black troublemakers

Wherever there's strife you will find Mag the Knife
Working hard for the big corporations
With a blade she's a master and no-one is faster
At carving up kids’ education

When wielding the axe or imposing a tax
Or closing a school she's a winner!
She’s persuaded a whole generation to diet
By raising the price of school dinners

She's cut social services, sold council houses
Rejected a limit on prices
This cast-iron filly has recognized Chile
While carving us up in thin slices

With the cost of health higher you may just expire
(In which case less pills you'll be needing)
In the words of Ted Heath, if you can't pay for teeth
You'll be forced to cut down on your feeding

Some say that her diction’s a natural affliction
Some say she's a noisy old bag
While others will swear, yes, and loudly declare
That she's actually Hitler in drag

How her back-bencher squirm when she flashes her perm
Or cracks a coy joke on the telly
Or plays a loyal martyr for president Carter
While crawling around on her belly

Each Monday Club member is pledged to dismember
The organs of nationalization
And chaps of high merit may hope to inherit
The spoils from the sack of the nation

They're the lords of creation, the cream of the Nation
Lord Soames and Keith Joseph and others
They'll help you discover that all men are brothers
But some are more brothers than others

And so, once again, let us praise famous men
Adding chapters to Britain's proud story
They may not look bright but they're British and white
And to a man (and a woman) they're Tory

Though they look mediocre, like shady stockbrokers
At first sight as harmless as mutton
If the nuclear warheads are sent on their way
It's their fingers will be on the button.


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