h1

mucking through the swamp

February 8, 2009
Porch Chair (further info on website)

Porch Chair (further info on website)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’d intended to begin here with lovely life-affirming words and pictures, tripping gently through February. Instead I’m confronted by harrying news from the U.S., my country tis of thee. : 

Distracted this morning, by whimpers from the swamp that is the U.S. Congress.  In the big Recovery plans, they’re lumping nonprofit arts org’s together with casinos, stadiums and golf courses. Typical.
The U.S. is way way way WAY behind every other civilized country in acknowledging the essential nature of Art for a thriving economy/culture/society. Now, in the scramble to salvage our country… they’re threatening to pinch off the meager lifeline that the arts currently have:  the NEA.

To paraphrase Willy: “Do we not bleed?” and “Is our money not green?”

If you click the link below and enter your zip code it’ll tell you if your people voted to delete nonprofit arts funding from any recovery measures, and it’ll give you a very quick way to send feedback:

http://capwiz.com/artsusa/issues/alert/?alertid=12612041

If this kind of feedback meant nothing, as is rumored, would these tenuous or’gs bother?

The letter they offer, as amended by me, is pasted below. I’m relieved to say that RI voted against the measure.

Many thanks for your vote against S.Amdt.309 offered by Sen. Tom Coburn (Roll Call #51)which prohibits funding for “museums, theaters, and arts centers” in the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act.

The lumping of nonprofit organizations and our cultural beacons together with the plagues of casinos et al was a bizarrely misguided veer off a cliff in the attempt to trim excess. This is precious-baby-with-the-bathwater time!  Shocking.

There are approximately 100,000 nonprofit arts organizations, which spend $63.1 billion annually. Without an economic stimulus for the nonprofit arts industry, experts expect about 10% of these organizations (ranging from large arts institutions like museums and orchestras to small community-based organizations in suburban, urban and rural areas) to shut their doors in 2009 a loss of 260,000 jobs.
According to the Americans for the Arts, a $50 million investment to the National Endowment for the Arts will provide critical funding to save 14,422 jobs from being lost in the U.S. economy. This is based on the ability of the NEA to leverage $7 in additional support through local, state and private donations, for every $1 in NEA support.
In a report released in mid-January, the National Governor’s Association stated, “Arts and culture are important to state economies. Arts and culture-related industries, also known as “creative industries,” provide direct economic benefits to states and communities: They create jobs, attract investments, generate tax revenues, and stimulate local economies through tourism and consumer purchases.” 
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6 comments

  1. Hey Moira! You jumped in, how’s the water?!!


  2. Ja, well… the system seems to be confused by cut-and-pasting, which will limit me and my blah-blah-blah. I guess somebody’s got to make a limit.
    Otherwise… can’t really tell yet. Woke up SERIOUS this morning.


  3. Congrat’s Moira. I’m still a (blog) virgin! Ha!


  4. Hey Moira, Welcome to the blogasphere! Yep it’s a mucky mess over here! It seems they are more interested in developing the “destructive industries” instead of the “creative industries” I guess you flew the coop from this place? I think about doing the same at times.


  5. Hey, my first ever blog…..feels momentous. Whoops, feeling a little sarcastic. I shall stop it right now. xxx love and light, Izi


  6. Hmmm….another one, have a lovely day. xxx Izi



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