The Premier and the Socialist

by Andrew Barton Paterson

The Premier and the Socialist
Were walking through the State:
They wept to see the Savings Bank
Such funds accumulate.
"If these were only cleared away,"
They said, "it would be great."
"If three financial amateurs
Controlled them for a year,
Do you suppose," the Premier said,
"That they would get them clear?"
"I think so," said the Socialist;
"They would -- or very near!"

"If we should try to raise some cash
On assets of our own,
Do you suppose," the Premier said,
"That we could float a loan?"
"I doubt it," said the Socialist,
And groaned a doleful groan.

"Oh, Savings, come and walk with us!"
The Premier did entreat;
"A little walk, a little talk,
Away from Barrack Street;
My Socialistic friend will guide
Your inexperienced feet."

"We do not think," the Savings said,
"A socialistic crank,
Although he chance just now to hold
A legislative rank,
Can teach experienced Banking men
The way to run a Bank."

The Premier and the Socialist
They passed an Act or so
To take the little Savings out
And let them have a blow.
"We'll teach the Banks," the Premier said,
"The way to run the show.

"There's Tom Waddell -- in Bank finance
Can show them what is what.
I used to prove not long ago
His Estimates were rot.
But that -- like many other things --
I've recently forgot.

"Advances on a dried-out farm
Are what we chiefly need,
And loaned to friends of Ms.L.A.
Are very good, indeed,
See how the back-block Cockatoos
Are rolling up to feed."

"But not on us," the Savings cried,
Falling a little flat,
"We didn't think a man like you
Would do a thing like that;
For most of us are very small,
And none of us are fat."

"This haughty tone," the Premier said,
"Is not the proper line;
Before I'd be dictated to
My billet I'd resign!"
"How brightly," said the Socialist,
"Those little sovereigns shine."

The Premier and the Socialist
They had their bit of fun;
They tried to call the Savings back
But answer came there none,
Because the back-block Cockatoos
Had eaten every one.

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