"The World Isn't Fair" as written by and Randy Newman....
When Karl Marx was a boy
He took a hard look around
He saw people were starving all over the place
While others were painting the town
The public spirited boy
Became a public spirited man
So he worked very hard and he read everything
Until he came up with a plan

There'll be no exploitation
Of the worker or his kin
No discrimination 'cause of the color of your skin
No more private property
It would not be allowed
No one could rise too high
No one could sink too low
Or go under completely like some we all know

If Marx were living today
He'd be rolling around in his grave
And if I had him here in my mansion on the hill
I'd tell him a story t'would give his old heart a chill

It's something that happened to me
I'd say, Karl I recently stumbled
Into a new family
With two little children in school
Where all little children should be
I went to the orientation
All the young mommies were there
Karl, you never have seen such a glorious sight
As these beautiful women arrayed for the night
Just like countesses, empresses, movie stars and queens
And they'd come there with men much like me
Froggish men, unpleasant to see
Were you to kiss one, Karl
Nary a prince would there be

Oh Karl the world isn't fair
It isn't and never will be
They tried out your plan
It brought misery instead
If you'd seen how they worked it
You'd be glad you were dead
Just like I'm glad I'm living in the land of the free
Where the rich just get richer
And the poor you don't ever have to see
It would depress us, Karl
Because we care
That the world still isn't fair


Lyrics submitted by wingedsorceress

"The World Isn't Fair" as written by Randy Newman

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc., Universal Music Publishing Group

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The World Isn't Fair song meanings
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5 Comments

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  • 0
    General CommentWell, I never heard the song before. But basically he's speaking about Karl Marx's start of Communism and how it's not for the US, the land of the free.
    pacsun2871on June 01, 2002   Link
  • 0
    Lyric CorrectionWhen Karl Marx was a boy
    He took a hard look around
    He saw people were starving all over the place
    While others were painting the town

    A public-spirited boy
    Became a public-spirited man
    So he worked very hard and he read everything
    Until he came up with a plan

    There'd be no exploitation
    Of worker or his kin
    No discrimination
    'Cause the color of your skin

    No more private property
    It would not be allowed
    No one could rise too high
    No one could sink too low
    Or go under completely like some we all know

    If Marx were living today he'd be rolling around in his grave
    And if I had him here on my mansion on the hill
    I'd tell him a story that would give his old heart a chill
    It's something that happened to me

    I'd say Karl I recently stumbled
    Into a new family
    Two little children in school
    Where all little children should be

    I went to the orientation
    All the young mommies were there
    Karl you never have seen such a glorious sight
    As these beautiful women arrayed for the night
    Just like countesses, empresses, movie stars, and queens

    They'd come there with men much like me
    Froggish men, unpleasant to see
    Were you to kiss one, Karl,
    Nary a prince would there be

    Oh Karl, the world isn't fair
    It isn't and never will be
    They tried out your plan
    It brought misery instead
    If you'd seen how they worked it
    You'd be glad you were dead
    Just like I'm glad I'm livin' in the land of the free
    Where the rich just get richer and the poor you don't ever have to see
    It would depress us, Karl,
    Because we care
    That the world
    Still isn't
    Fair.
    middleCmusicon March 06, 2011   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThe key to this is the end. It's not just a song about Communism failing to work. It's also a song about how Capitalism doesn't work, because most people live for their own advantage rather than working for a fair world. The story he narrates is about rich men using their wealth and young women using their erotic capital, for personal advantage - and keep the poor and suffering out of sight. The problem isn't Communism, or Capitalism. The problem is people. No system can work while people are mainly interested in themselves.
    trapnel1on February 23, 2014   Link
  • -1
    General CommentI just love how he adds his little twist at the end, about going to a school play with all these fat and ugly rich men and their pretty wives only because of their money. That was his idea as to why Communist sucked, even if it helped the poor. I thought it was a great way to end it.
    ckad79on February 17, 2005   Link
  • -1
    General CommentMy favorite part of this song is "If Marx were living today, he'd be rolling around in his grave". Obviously, Marx is buried, and in a coffin now, and I can't help but smile at the idea of Marx suddenly being alive today, finding himself in a coffin, and 'rolling around in his grave' as a result. Somewhat morbid, but I smile just the same ;)
    Helmuton April 02, 2007   Link

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