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Comments

Paco

Okay. I give up. Why is this a bad idea and why is it WRONG? Explain it to me and the jewish brother-in-law.

pedro

Yo, Paco, your question sort of proves my point, does it not? More later. Gotta earn some coin right now.

John Weidner

It's bad because it's no business of the Feds to decide what art to promote, and because the ordnary taxpayer should not be forced to spend money on artists who openly despise him and his values (and his intelligence, and his taste, and his clothes, and his traditional morals, and his belief in American freedoms.)

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 that the NEA is subsidizing, say, trampling-on-the-cross performance art, the truth is that they gave a grant to a museum to cover 25% of one season of art shows. 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...

Pedro

It's worse than that. Taking property from some people to give it to others is wrong. It's stealing for simple political gain. It violates our rights. We've gotten used to it in so many ways we hardly notice any more, but in the case of the NEA it's so obvious that even a compassionate conservative should be able to see it.
Not only that, but the takings, the loot if you will, goes almost entirely to the left. For a Republican president to do this is just stupid. Why piss off your own side to enrich the other?
IF the NEA, then WHY NOT subsidize everyone's cable TV bill? Or movie ticket admissions? It's sickening to me.

Paco

I guess sooner or later this stream must die, but there are plenty of things taxpayers across the political spectrum resent subsidizing. Like enriching Halliburton cronies and other right wingers using the government as their personal ATM machine. BTW, as a non-parent, you don't hear me griping about paying taxes to support schools and education. In fact, the elimination-to-near-extinction of music programs in school is a real blow to education. Despite the obvious attempt by Bush to "throw a bone" to the arts culture to court the moderates in an election year, notwithstanding, I applaud the move. Damn the motive; acknowledge the gesture. As new president of a state wide arts organization, I have a new appreciation for the financial struggles of arts groups. Jeb approved a $61,000 grant to our organization last year which was included in our yearly budget. Then, after preapproval, he slashed it to $12,000, leaving a $49,000 budgetary shortfall. In a country our size it is shameful not to recognize and subsidize the arts culture. The Right's apoplectic seizures about the Mapplethorpe pics (and the poopy Mary painting)was an anomaly and touted as the rule, rather than it was, the exception to mainstream art.

Pedro

Paco, are you trying to expose me for the radical Libertarian I truly am?
It is not necessary to support the arts with money taken from people against their will. If the Arts are so great, then let the Artists and their Supporters pony up the cash and PERSUADE others to contribute too. There is no justification for coercion here, none whatsoever.
And as the father of 3, I'd give up their "free" educations in a heartbeat if it would mean all the other gov't crap would go away, too.

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Seen at low tide

  • American White Pelican
    Saw 30 in one flock on a weptember evening while fishing
  • Hummingbird
    Finally, my first hummingbirds. Saw them on a fire bush in Crystal Beach, FL. My rental's neighbor's yard is all xeriscaped, which is ugly to me but just fine with the little hummers. At first, I thought they were the biggest hornets I'd ever seen.
  • Flamingo!
    One of these dudes flew right over my house. I couldn't believe it. And please don't tell me it was a roseated spoonbill because it was a frickin' flamingo, dude! Huge and pink and right there above me. I was like so freaking out, you know?
  • Falcon!
    Don't see these guys too often. Wish we did. Bet the morning doves don't.
  • Black Skimmer
    These beauties are getting scarce, but one flew by yesterday at low tide on the hunt for minnows.
  • Dead sea turtle
    cool, but smelly
  • Reddish Egret
    These have been hanging out around the pool quite a bit lately. Must be a new group of adolesent birds -- the youngsters like to hunt where the water is clear, and it takes them a day to figure out there are not now and never will be fish in the swimming pool no matter how clear the water.
  • Sand Piper
  • Brown Pelican
    I saw a flock of about 200 of these at Disappearing Island yesterday, just south of Anclote Island on the west coast of FL. Good to see such a large flock.
  • Wood Pecker
    They've developed a sudden interest in the orange tree, which just went into bloom.
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