January 29, 2004

Support local Beatniks...

I posted this as a comment to Pedro's post on Bush supporting the National Endowment for the Arts. Someone asked why Conservatives thought this was bad...My take:

It's bad because it's no business of the Feds to decide what art should flourish. And because the ordinary taxpayer should not be forced to provide money to artists who openly despise him and his values (and his intelligence, and his taste, and his clothes, and his coffee, and his traditional morals, and his belief in American freedoms, and his desire to censor Saddam's chipper-shredder deconstructionism.)

On the other hand, it's not quite as bad as some attention-getters describe. A large part of what's subsidized is quite reasonable and sensible stuff. And often when you hear shrill despair because the NEA is subsidizing somebody's trampling-on-the-cross performance art, the truth is that they gave a grant to a museum to cover, say, 25% of one season of art shows. And maybe one of the shows is loathsome, but the NEA never supported that one in particular, and probably didn't even know it was going to happen...and likely the show organizer didn't know what he was going to get.

The NEA isn't handing out checks to beret-wearing beatniks. It's all much more bureaucratic and stuffy.

Me, I'd like to see a grant go to that Israeli Ambassador to Sweden...

Posted by John Weidner at January 29, 2004 7:28 PM
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