Can't take the train to the job, there's a strike at the station

from Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five (Ft. Duke Bootee & Melle Mel) – The Message Lyrics on Rap Genius

Meaning

The most famous city transit strike was in 1966, well before this song was recorded, but New York City was basically bankrupt for the next two decades thanks to the generous settlement future Mayor John Lindsey—he hadn’t even taken office, like Barack Obama during the bailout—arranged with the transit workers' union to end the strike

There was also a transit strike in 1980, not long before this song was recorded.

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