Pipeline

As soon as they started drilling for oil they started building pipelines
On the seabed, through the forests and across the borderlines
As soon as they started laying the pipe they said we’ll do this safely
There will never be an accident, we can do this carefully
But the sands shift, the ice melts, disasters are routine
Point out their record of destruction and they’ll say their hands are clean
Point out their woeful deeds and they’ll consult their banker
And say it’s safer to use a pipeline than an oil tanker
So now they want to see how far their madness it can go
A pipeline from the Tar Sands to the Gulf of Mexico

The tar sands lie in the north beneath Alberta’s ground
As the price of oil rises and the oil men have found
Now there’s profit to be made in a madman’s dream
By drilling deep beneath the Earth, blasting it with steam
Bulldozing the land, melting what’s inside
A record of extinction a thousand miles wide
But laying waste to the northern plains is evidently not enough
The capitalists need markets where they can sell this toxic stuff
So across the farms and prairies the oil now must flow
A pipeline from the Tar Sands to the Gulf of Mexico

Governors oppose it and every native band
Ranchers don’t want it passing through their land
Union leaders have denounced it as have the rank and file
The President delayed it for just a little while
They say you can’t stop progress, I hope that isn’t true
‘Cause if we mine the tar sands, if we let the pipeline through
It will be a pipeline to oblivion, a pipeline to the end
A pipeline to a future with nothing round the bend
A pipeline to a future that I hope we’ll never know
A pipeline from the Tar Sands to the Gulf of Mexico

Buy/share the album:

Sheet music:
Pipeline

“Pipeline” appears on the Bandcamp album, Everything Can Change (2013) and on the CD, If I Had A Hammer (2013).

I had every intention of writing a song on the subject of TransCanada’s massive pipeline project to get their dirty fuel to market in Asia and elsewhere via ports throughout the US. ┬áBut then I got an anonymous donation from someone describing herself as an indigenous woman from Oklahoma, commissioning a song on the subject, and I wrote it.

Sign up to Newsletter