Newspoem 7 October 2004

Swing States Pay The Price

stubbornly working class, formerly libertarian
Ohio can't choose which suit to vote for

the tax for indecisiveness
in Cleveland has risen to $270,610

forced to lay off 250 police and
450 other workers last year
(11% of city employees)
to solve a $30 million deficit
the downsized city must provide
security for frequent campaign stops

$27.50 for plumbers to accompany secret service
on a sweep of the convention center
$82.50 to disconnect the sprinkler system
to protect Senator Kerry
$485.10 for the fireman who sat up
all night in President Bush's hotel
$66,887 for 135 patrolmen, 80
squad cars, covert surveillance,
bomb and canine squads, and a
SWAT team to protect Bush's motorcade

$12,958 in Lima, Ohio (pop. 4500)
$640 for bike racks to cordon off Bush
$2459 (plus $960 for a truck)
to remove lampposts for Kerry

in Cedar Rapids the police training fund
was spent to encircle a park with dumptrucks

reporters' bar tabs and local television advertising
barely offset the cost to the struggling city economies
says Susan Helper from Case Western Reserve

" Fifteen hundred reporters on expense accounts
make some dent. It's not like 1500 manufacturing
jobs paying $20 an hour. But it's better than nothing."

Newspoetry at Spineless Books