The Arts Don’t Need State Funding
October 29, 2012 Leave a comment
If you haven’t already, have a look at Kickstarter. Its a crowdfunding website for creative projects. Last year, it funded three times as many projects as America’s National Endowment for the Arts – and its growing.
The National Endowment for the Arts is not the most costly of government programs, but its not popular – particularly among American conservatives. Pat Buchanan could make it a centerpiece of a Presidential run. The NEA and its equivalents all over the world, like the Arts Council in Ireland, don’t give you a choice in what your money is funding. Kickstarter does. Its going to be bigger, more efficient, and superior from a moral perspective than the mighty fiefdoms of the state arts bodies.
Kickstarter is the future. The NEA will be as irrelevant as the Post Office, and just as much of a laughing stock.
Its all part of a trend. The internet has brought about and will bring about greater liberty. Its doing this better than any activist or pressure group. Soon, most of us may no longer be forced to rely on the government schools or state-approved private schools with the help of websites like the Khan Academy. One day, an artist’s living wont depend on the whim of the bureaucrat, but on what the public really wants.
In the face of those who dislike this change, I am reminded of something I read in the existentialist novella Liquidation by Imre Kertesz. An employee of a publishing house in Budapest after the collapse of the Soviet Union is bitter about the business going into liquidation without state support. Kingbitter, the senior editor, reminds this woman that state subsidies were the regime’s way of liquidating literature.
The current regime is doomed, just like the Soviet Union. It will be a bloodless, gradual and most welcome collapse.