The streets were full of idle men
and frost was in the air.
Old Kaspar stacked the supper plates
And settled in his chair,
While Peterkin and Wilhelmine
Look at the futurama screen.
They watched some workers park their cars
And never hesitate
To cross the union picket line
Outside the factory gate;
While union bosses standing there
Were wringing hands and tearing hair.
"Why aren’t those workers beaten up?"
The little children cried.
"They’ve lost the look and smell of fear,’
Old Kaspar soon replied.
"No longer do they live in dread
Of loss of job or broken head."
"There was a time," said Kaspar then,
"When many workers’ pay
And right to work at chosen jobs
Were under union sway;
And few were those who dared refuse
To pay the soaring union dues."
"Did no one ever try to free
The men the unions caught?"
"It was a time,"
Old Kaspar sighed,
"When other folks were taught
To hold the union picket lines
As sacred as religious shrines."
"What happened, then," asked Peterkin,
"To set the workers free?"
"They simply took their freedom, Pete,
Because they came to see
How paltry was their share of gains
Against the weight of union chains."