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New song: "Congestion Charge"

Extra! Extra! Hear all about it!

The governor of New York's U-turn on imposing a congestion charge on car traffic in lower Manhattan has been in the news today. Read certain news sources and you'll even find out what the U-turn was actually about. Here's the rhyming version of the story.

Congestation Charge

The planet’s burning up, the climate’s changing fast
If we don’t reverse course, these days could be our last
These subways were dug out in 1896
There are a lot of problems that we need to fix
We were just about to roll out the new congestion charge
A $15 toll for folks who want to drive a car

It works fine in London, coulda worked in NYC
If this were actually the land of the free
But it’s the land of the auction block, of the captured state
Cast your rod and see who takes the bait
Find out the investment needed to sow what you reap
Turns out in Albany the price is very cheap

To run New York State
To bring you up to speed
Is all the money that you need

The governor was bragging about the new congestion fee
New York was set to be the first one in the country
It would be good for commuters, and good for the Earth
But then we got to find out how much good is worth
And at the governor’s mansion there’s a bargain basement sale
Policy belongs to whoever wants to tip the scale


If you represent the interests of the dealerships
The price of a Prius is all you need to tip
The balance in favor of the corporations
Suddenly the governor has a different estimation
From climate change to traffic to fixing up the trains
All the fascinating flip-flops in a politician’s brain


Give out a little money and they change their policy
What a way to run a state – along with its biggest city
Sold to whoever gives out a little bribe
Don't know what kind of Kool-aid you'd have to imbibe
If it looks like corruption, it might be true
Could be the way they do things in your city, too


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This Week with David Rovics
This Week with David Rovics
If I do an interview, whether as the interviewer or interviewee, or a livestream event, new song, audio essay or various other things, it’ll often go out as a podcast here.