The War Economy & The Poor People’s Campaign

Lyrics by: Vicki Ryder
Gaggle: North Carolina
Tune: Solidarity Forever

This is a re-write of one of my older songs. Originally written for Veterans For Peace as The War Economy, it now addresses the four prongs of the Poor People’s Campaign: systemic racism, systemic poverty, the war economy, and ecological devastation.
We’re rising up in [Raleigh] now and joining the campaign,
A task that wasn’t finished when the Rev’rend King was slain.
Fifty years have come and gone but still his words ring true:
So how’s this war economy workin’ out for you?


We are marching proudly in the Poor People’s Campaign,
With voices loud and fists raised high we’re throwin’ off our chains;
And we’ll keep marching forward, and we won’t go back again!
Together we are strong!

They tell us there’s no money now for jobs or health care plans,
But there’s always lots of money for their wars in far off lands.
They spend it all for war, and not for schools or homes, that’s true.
So how’s this war economy workin’ out for you?

They spent three trillion dollars when they sent our kids to war.
Not all our kids, ya know, but just the brown, the black, the poor.
They had no hope of finding jobs in the good ol’ USA…
So how’s this war economy workin’ for them today?

There’s coal ash, pipelines, fracking, and there’s drilling off our shores,
And the toxic waste gets dumped upon the people who are poor.
The profiteers will kill us all if we don’t raise an awful fuss,
’Cause it’s clear this war economy ain’t workin’ out for us.

So we stand today in [Raleigh] and we sing our simple song,
For dignity for everyone, a place we all belong.
Listen, politicians! We won’t take it anymore!
In a land as rich as this one why should anyone be poor?