National Healthcare Now!

from by Anne Feeney

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about

Thanks so much to my co-writer Brian Cutean for his brilliant update of our song for this project. This song is actually way older than Obamacare.

In August of 1991 I was invited to perform at the huge Solidarity Day demonstration in Washington, DC - called by the AFL-CIO. 500,000 trade unionists marched on Washington, DC to demand protection for workers to prevent them from being fired and/or replaced during a strike (as happened to the Air Traffic Controllers in 1981 during the Reagan administration). Anne wrote picketline favorite "Scabs" for this rally. (We never got that bill passed.)

The marchers' other demand was for a national health care plan.that covered everyone in the United States. Other performers that day were: Willie Nelson, Pete Seeger, Theodore Bikel, Si Kahn, Fruit of Labor, Baldemar Velasquez and many more.

I didn't want to go to the trouble to write a healthcare song because I was certain that battle would be won as soon as Bill Clinton took over the White House. I ended up writing the song anyway, with Kerrville Folk Festival stalwart, Brian Cutean and British musical sensation Rory McLeod. We wrote it in the wee hours under the stars during the 1991 festival. I performed it three months later with a badass Pittsburgh band for half a million people!

lyrics

Danny was born 10 weeks too soon
Premature baby in the ICU
What we did to Danny was a low-down crime
Slashed the safety net for the bottom line
Something’s gone wrong, won’t you tell me why
Rich folk live, poor folk die?

When I started this job, check-ups were free
Now I can't afford what's gone wrong with me
My healthcare benefits gone away
With the lie that the company calls “co-pay”
Something’s gone wrong, won’t you tell me why
Rich get richer and poor folk die?
Living is a thing that money can buy
Rich folks live and poor folk die

Private insurance makes no sense
Get a brand new liver at a huge expense
But dentures, glasses, hearing aids
Are "luxury items" that won’t get paid
Something’s gone wrong, won’t you tell me why
Rich get richer and poor folk die?
Living is a thing that money can buy
Rich folks live – poor folk die

The Affordable Care Act is just a start
but it's time to move on to the next part
Roll those insurance companies into one
Make single payer for everyone
Buying for all instead of buying for some
Plowshares made from melted guns

Affordable health shouldn't be this hard
Got the third world right here in our backyard
Listen up Mr. Jones and Mr. Dow
We want National Health Care Now!

We want National Health Care Now!
We want National Health Care Now!
Single Payer's the only way how!
We want National Health Care Now!

credits

from War on the Workers a Tribute to Anne Feeney, released December 28, 2016
© Anne Feeney, Rory McLeod and Brian Cutean (BMI)
Brian Cutean- Vocals, Guitar Amanda Spring,
Nancy Tannler- Wurlitzer Piano
Simon Lucas- Drums, Percussion
Amanda Spring- Electric Bass
Sean Shanahan- Electric Slide Guitar
Background vocals by The Chameleons of Social Change
Additional recording at Audio Verité Studio by Sean Shanahan
Recorded at Destination Universe Studios by Victor Nash.

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about

Anne Feeney Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Anne Feeney is a front-line singer and agitator well-versed in the traditions of Pete Seeger, Phil Ochs and Tom Lehrer.

She's taken her musical message all over the US and Canada as well as Sweden and Denmark.

Based in Pittsburgh, PA, For almost 50 years, Anne has gone to wherever the fires of resistance burn brightly, comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable.
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