Hugh Laurie SNL Protest Song Lyrics

At a “Workshop on Creative Ideas to Teach Principles,” organized by Jim Gwartney at the Stavros Center in Tampa, I presented some brief video clips that I use to make various points in my principles classes. The first was Hugh Laurie’s Protest Song.
After playing the song, I tell my students that to make the world better, you need more than a guitar and good intentions—you also need to know something about how the world works (in particular, you need to know some economics).
After my presentation, one of the participants asked if I knew where he could find the lyrics. In response, I found the lyrics posted online, and re-post them here in case they may be of use to other economic educators.

Hugh Laurie’s Saturday Night Live Protest Song

[ open on Hugh Laurie standing at Home Base strumming a guitar ]
Hugh Laurie: This is a protest song. [ blows on a harmonica attached to his neck ]
[ singing ]
“Well, the poor keep getting hungry, and the rich keep getting fat
Politicians change, but they’re never gonna change that.
Girl, we got the answer, it’s so easy you won’t believe
All we gotta do is.. [ mumbles incoherently ]
Well, the winds of war are blowin’, and the tide is comin’ in
Don’t you be hopin’ for the good times, because the good times have already been.
But, girl, we got the answer, it’s so easy you won’t believe
All we gotta do is.. [ mumbles incoherently ]
It’s so easy, to see
If only they’d listen, to you and me.
We got to.. [ mumbles incoherently ] as fast as we can
We got to.. [ mumbles incoherently ] every woman, every man
We got to.. [ mumbles incoherently ] time after time
We got to.. [ mumbles incoherently ] vodka and lime.
Well, the world is gettin’ weary, and it wants to go to bed
Everybody’s dyin’, except the ones who are already dead.
Girl, we got the answer, starin’ us right in the face
All we gotta do is
All we gotta do is
All we gotta do is.”
[ pauses, then blows on the harmonica and finishes ]
[ the audience cheers wildly ]
Hugh Laurie: Thank you.

Source of lyrics:
http://snltranscripts.jt.org/06/06dprotest.phtml

“I Want Some TARP” Satirical Video Clip

TARP.jpg Screen capture from the link cited below.

Today (Weds., 1/21/09) on CNBC, I caught a snippet of a replay of Bill Zucker’s musical video parody of the government’s TARP (Troubled Assets Relief Program) bailout. It was funny, and mainly on-target.

You can view it on YouTube, at:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yGfQk9XXm24&feature=pyv&ad=3038287303

Fred Thompson Satirizes Current Economic Bailout Policies

ThompsonFredOnTheEconomyDec2008.jpg Source of image: screen capture from the Fred Thompson video commentary described, and linked-to, below.

My brother Eric alerted me to a wise and witty video commentary by former Senator Fred Thompson satirizing current government bailout policies. The video has been posted to multiple locations. Here is the link to the posting on YouTube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RKc4XFK0iVY

Company Graveyard Scene from Wattenberg’s “In Search of the Real America”

EdselTombstone.JPG Source of image: screen capture downloaded on 9/3/08 from: http://cgi.ebay.com/PBS-TV-SERIES-IN-SEARCH-OF-THE-REAL-AMERICA-1977_W0QQitemZ330267803398QQihZ014QQcategoryZ63821QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

For years I have been trying to find a copy of Ben Wattenberg’s wonderful opening scene in the episode on big business of his 1970s series “In Search of the Real America.” He stands in a spooky, foggy, graveyard next to several tombstones. When we see the tombstones more closely, they have the names of big business corporate failures.

InSearchOfTheRealAmericaOpeningSlide.JPG Source of image: screen capture downloaded on 9/3/08 from: http://cgi.ebay.com/PBS-TV-SERIES-IN-SEARCH-OF-THE-REAL-AMERICA-1977_W0QQitemZ330267803398QQihZ014QQcategoryZ63821QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

SNL CSPAN Pelosi, Frank Bailout Skit

SNLcspanBailout2008-10-04.jpg Source: screen capture from the NBC video clip mentioned, and linked to below.

Most Saturday Night Live (SNL) skits support liberal causes and politicians, and are critical of those with sympathies for free markets.
There was a wonderful, rare exception aired as the second skit on the 10/04/08 show. The skit pokes fun at the Democrats for their responsibility in creating the mortgage meltdown crisis. Nancy Pelosi and Barney Frank are shown expressing sympathy for various miscreants who expect the taxpayer to bail them out of their financial responsibilites.
(An interesting sidenote is that NBC pulled the clip from their web site for a about a full day, even though they left up other clips from the same show. Some bloggers suggested that employees of NBC had political motivations for their act of quasi-censorshp.)

The skit was entitled “C-span Bailout” and as of 10/08/08, could be found at:
http://www.nbc.com/Saturday_Night_Live/video/clips/c-span-bailout/727521/

Post Office Wastes Money on 30,000 Ethanol Capable Vehicles

PostalMinivanCustomizedEthanol.jpg “A General Motors Corp. Chevrolet Uplander flexible fuel vehicle customized for the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is shown in this handout photo taken on April 22, 2008. The USPS bought more than 30,000 ethanol-capable trucks and minivans from 1999 to 2005, making it the biggest American buyer of alternative-fuel vehicles.” Source of caption and photo: Bloomberg.com article quoted and cited below.

I saw a great CNN video clip on 8/11/08 showing some of the specially designed Post Office vehicles that were expensive, but that were mainly running on regular gasoline because it was too difficult to fill them with the high-ethanol blend that they were converted to use.
Before I finally found the clip on CNNMoney.com, by searching for it using the TRUVEO video search engine, I discovered that a version of the story had run back in May on Bloomberg.com. I quote from the story below.

May 21 (Bloomberg) — The U.S. Postal Service purchased more than 30,000 ethanol-capable trucks and minivans from 1999 to 2005, making it the biggest American buyer of alternative-fuel vehicles. Gasoline consumption jumped by more than 1.5 million gallons as a result.
The trucks, derived from Ford Motor Co.’s Explorer sport- utility vehicle, had bigger engines than Jeeps from the former Chrysler Corp. they replaced. A Postal Service study found the new vehicles got as much as 29 percent fewer miles to the gallon. Mail carriers used the corn-based fuel in just 1,000 of them because there weren’t enough places to buy it.

For the full story, see:
Peter Robison, Alan Ohnsman and Alan Bjerga. “Ethanol Vehicles for Post Office Burn More Gas, Get Fewer Miles.” Last Updated: May 21, 2008 00:01 EDT Downloaded on August 8, 2008 from:
http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601072&refer=energy&sid=aj.h0coJSkpw

On the CNN Money video clip:
Jason Carroll was the reporter on the CNN Money clip that was added to CNNMoney.com on August 12, 2008, under the title “Snail Mail by Ethanol,” and is viewable at http://money.cnn.com/video/#/video/news/2008/08/12/news.usps.081108.cnnmoney

SnailMailEthanol.jpg Reporter Jason Carroll talks with mail carrier Richard Malik, who says he has never used ethanol in his expensive mail truck that had been specially designed to use ethanol. Source of photo: screen capture from the CNN Money video clip discussed above.