The Walrus Blog

“The Harper Song”

A political ditty inspired by Erna Paris’s “The New Solitudes”

John Roby performs “The Harper Song” in a video recorded and edited by The Mercer Report‘s Scott Stevenson

Meet John Roby — a writer, musician, composer, and Canadian citizen who says he is sick and tired of Stephen Harper, his big Conservative family, and the political turmoil that the Prime Minister’s leadership has produced. In the wake of Ottawa’s recent wave of political scandals (Bev Oda, Bruce Carson, and Conservative contempt of Parliament, just to name a few), Roby felt himself compelled into action. “In the March [2011] edition of The Walrus I read Erna Paris’s provocative essay, ‘The New Solitudes,’ on Harper and the erosion of democracy in this country during his tenure,” Roby reports. “It made me, usually the most complacent of political souls, want to exchange my usual cocktail for a Molotov and run to the barricades.”

And so he wrote a bodacious little ditty about his feelings (which, it must be noted, neither The Walrus nor The Walrus Blog specifically endorse — we are merely messengers here). Earnest, gutsy, with a Joe Cocker-ish growl and a melody in the vein of Randy Newman’s best tunes, “The Harper Song (Steve, It’s Time to Leave)” was born. We present it here as one voter’s heartfelt take on Canada’s fourth federal election in the past seven years.

“The Harper Song (Steve, It’s Time to Leave)”
Words and music by John Roby

Steve, Steve, itʼs time to leave
Itʼs time to close the Harper show
Your one-man band has got to go
Time to take a long long walk in the snow
Steve, itʼs time to leave

In the good old days we had democracy
But now itʼs Steve-autocracy
With a daily dose of hypocrisy
Spewing from the PMO
Thereʼs Odaʼs yes or no about a not
And whereʼs the bill for all those jails you’ve bought
It’s called contempt and like it or not
You’ve really got to go

Steve, Steve, itʼs time to leave
Itʼs time for this charade to end
Youʼre running out of rules to bend
You wonʼt get by with a little help from your friends
Steve, itʼs time to leave

Remember all that campaign spin?
Transparency would soon begin
Your in and out spending went out and in
Where the sun donʼt shine
Another slice of Harper sleaze
A little thing called detainees
You close down the House whenever you please
And you claim to have a spine

Steve, Steve, itʼs time to leave
Time to go screw something else
Time to put your crown on the shelf
Time to go and prorogue yourself
Steve, itʼs time to leave

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