Red tape by the roll

A poem by Brian McRae on the continual interference by governments into the lives of everyday people. An indictment of the modern “nanny state”.

Where’s your forms and license fee; the public servant whines
And keep in line with all the rest and watch the lights and signs
And don’t come to the service booth until your ticket’s called
As all look in amazement at our system choked and stalled

A visit to a Guv’ment desk will rattle most who try
To solve a simple problem, or to question, when or why
For any piece of ruling, in a legislative maze
That halts the wheels of common sense, and wastes our time and days

A license for your building job, a license for your car
A license for your family pets, no matter what they are
A license for your pleasure boat, a permit for your sport
A fine if you’re caught parking, or a costly day in court

A license for your marriage, and a fee when you are dead
A tax upon your earnings, not a chance to get ahead
A fee to own a firearm which they try to take with stealth
Except to put your life at risk to save their arse and wealth

No matter what your leisure time, no matter what your job
Our public service takes a cut, they’re authorized to rob
And when they cannot use the cash they’re budgeted to spend
They pour it into projects which are wasteful to the end

Our country trips and stumbles, but departments formed to lead
All scramble hard to pass the buck, and shirk their moral creed
They laze in comfy office chairs, with coffee cakes and tea
And cruise the roads in four wheel drives and cars with petrol free

Now as our country slowly dies, all choked with tape and rules
No money left for social stock, or hospitals and schools
With every trip outside our home, a license, fee or fine
To fatten bureaucratic hordes, and boost their bottom line

And when it comes election time our politicians squawk
That they will fix the problems, but the lot is baseless talk
They toe the line and keep their snouts all firmly in the swill
As long as someone serves it up and someone pays the bill

A fleeting look in history books, the Romans, Greeks or Moors
All empires lost in silt and dust, and dashed on foreign shores
They all succumbed to bribery, corruption, greed and sloth
And crumbled from the inside out, to cinders, dust and froth

And our once “Lucky Country” now, is trapped within that rut
As those in charge, all drunk with power, just preen and crow and strut
For everybody’s problem, is for someone else to solve
And we will follow Rome’s demise, and steadily dissolve.

Brian McRea
1st of March 2009

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