Friday, March 17, 2017

Oh, The Arts and Humanities!

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President Trump's budget calls for the complete elimination of taxpayer funding for NPR radio, PBS television, and the National Endowment for the Arts. All of which were things that Adolf Hitler also did just before firing up the big ovens.

Or at least, that's what the Left would have you believe. Personally, we're delighted with the budget cuts and think they're long overdue. According to the Neilsen ratings service, if PBS went off the air (unlikely, as only part of their budget comes from taxpayers), the average viewer would still have 188 channels to choose from. Likewise, there are plenty of free broadcast radio stations with which to replace NPR in the marketplace - not to mention tens of thousands of radio stations and podcasts available online.

As for the National Endowment for the Arts, we think it unlikely that art will stop being created or distributed by real artists just because the government checks dry up. But the faux artists, so loved by the Left, will stop getting huge paydays for dunking crucifixes in urine, and will instead go back to giving the police free samples of their whiz to test for drug use.

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Happy Saint Patrick's Day! Although you wouldn't guess it from the Jarlsberg name, we actually have Irish blood thanks to a redheaded paternal grandfather who immigrated from County Cork. Once in America, he knocked up our grandmother (who apparently could have used a cork) out of wedlock, then scampered away like one of the elusive little people.

Leprechauns, that is. We're not mocking the short-statured nor implying in any way that they're a shifty and promiscuous lot, no matter what you're heard.

The joke, however, was on O'Grandpa - as it turned out that his bastard son became a talented and delightful man and great father. We'll be drinking a toast to his memory today, and hope you'll join us in raising a glass!


Today is a big day for Daughter Jarlsberg! She's moving to a new apartment which will be closer to her job.

She's excited, we're excited, and her dog Ladybug is excited! Still, the act of hauling all of your belongings across town, loading an apartment, and setting up a new life can be a bit harrowing. For that reason, we'll appreciate any and all positive thoughts directed toward Oklahoma today!


Mike aka Proof said...

If there's no gov't subsidies for National Public Radio, how will its listeners get their Morning Sedition?

james daily said...

What a day. The Prez has met the enemy and it's both parties. Everyone except those in congress and employed by the pubic TV and Radio is all for making them pay their way, or shutting it down. Maybe then those employed go out and get real jobs (but who in their right mind would hire them?) If I found a Leprechaun's pot of gold, I would probably pour out the gold so I would have a pot to piss in.

Mike the Nav said...

In my opinion, much of PBS contains useful, entertaining, and educating content. Who CANNOT resist Ken Burns next offering, Rick Steve's next travelogue, any appearance by Neil DeGrasse Tyson, or just about any Nova episode? I must admit that PBS intersperses the good stuff with weepy, depressing, current events pieces showing downtrodden folks trapped in a web of poverty and ignorance, but that can always be turned off. They could use a bit more pieces showing the strength and glories of a patriotic America, but that is probably too much to ask for. All in all, I say "keep PBS."

Chrissy the Hyphenated said...

Ooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooh-klahoma where the wind etc. etc. All good wishes for a smooth, safe move for Daddy's Little Girl.

Jim Irre said...

I would agree with @Mike the Nav regarding the offerings on PBS. They still have commercials and that number will increase if they have to support themselves. But support themselves, they must!

I refuse to support the cable/satellite cabal, so many rabbits have been sacrificed in my quest to find a set of ears that will get me the largest number of stations. Poor rabbits! It's hardly worth it. Broadcast TV is still a barren wasteland. Oh well, it's kind of free!

Kevin Cox said...

We had a cocker spaniel named Ladybug when I was a little kid. Now there's a connection.

Alan said...

All I can think of is "You're the reason God made Oklahoma".

PaBlum said...

Mazel Tov!

Judi King said...

I totally love great art but totally agree with you on the "arts" thing. The government's version of what art is....isn't. It's pathetic and shouldn't be funded by OUR money. That includes public radio and TV.
I'm about 1/4 Irish also and love St. Patrick' Day. Wearing green today.
Happy for your daughter. Good luck to her, moving isn't easy.

Geoff King said...

Ahh! Sure'n it be the wee people what you be talkin' 'bout now!
Being an average American mutt, I also have some Irish in me - at least enough to give me a taste for whiskey.
Happy St. Pat's Day!

Boligat said...

If the "P" in PBS goes away, there will be 175,483 pledge drives instead of 175,482.

Mississippi Ronn said...

Stilton just wanted to say thank you for continuing your site! In the struggles of the last eight years it was always a breath of fresh air and a laugh to find you in my inbox. So, when you announced it's end I was devastated. So once again thanks, the future is much funnier with you along for the ride.

Pete (Detroit) said...

NPR - BITD, friends suggested I try listening to NPR during my daily commute.
I gave it a try.
Caught them DELIBERATELY LYING to us / me ("9/11 commission report says Saddam had no ties to terrorism" - uh, no, actually it said that despite clear ties to established terror groups, it did not appear he had anything to do w/ 9/11)
They have been dead to me since.
Sure, on the occasional trip up north, there is a place or two where nothing else is on the radio, and I might catch a story about native drum crafting / drum circles / squirrel procreation / deer tick migration or some other obscure / obtuse yet interesting topic.
But by and large, meh.
Some of my libbish friends are all "it's freaking 28 cents, per person, per year - this isn't even a drop in the bucket, it's mist in the air OVER the bucket..."
Dude - we gotta start SOMEWHERE..... Federal overspending will destroy this country in ten years - do you REALLY want to be Greece?

Spending - We NEED to KILL that damned useless Joint Task Fighter program, period.
Kind of a cute thought - one vehicle that's a minivan on Monday, race car on Tuesday, tug boat on Thursday...
And bless the engineers, they actually pulled it off - sort of...
The plane CAN actually DO all the missions it's tasked with
it's a crappy minivan, a terrible race car, and not much of a tug boat...
C'mon, people, there is a REASON that DIFFERENT missions require DIFFERENT platforms...
Yeesh. Stop throwing good $$$ after bad... Kill this useless mongrel...

Irish - My great grandmother was from Dublin, and her maiden name is the same as the folks who sold Arthur Guinness the brewery all those years ago. Not sure if they were too lazy to make the brewery profitable, or they just weren't very good brewers, but I always look at the gorgeous dark brew and think "Missed it, by THAT much!"

Guinness - "Oh, I can't have more than two, I get SO wasted on it" - psychosomatic drunks.. Guinness is the original 'lite beer' - 3.5% in Ireland, about 4.5% here. People who don't know any better confuse dark color or strong flavor with high alcohol - and they're completely unrelated. Sorry if I've ruined a cheap buzz for anyone here, but facts are kind of pesky like that...

Moving regularly (8 times in the 10 years I lived in TX) is a GREAT way to trim the useless clutter from your life.
On the other hand, it's nice to have a FEW things to keep one's space from looking too bare.. Glad she's excited about improving the situation (shorter commute is ALWAYS a worthy goal!) and all hopes for a low hassle experience!

Alfonso Bedoya said...

NPR isn't the only entity that has been soaking up taxpayer money for years. Add in the government grants for Cowboy Poetry (thanks to the congressional encouragement by Nevada's Harry Reid). I am not kidding!

The National Endowment for the Arts released its list of taxpayer-funded grants for 2017, which includes a zombie version of "Macbeth," cowboy poetry, and a gay men's chorus.

Projects include a Los Angeles production of William Shakespeare's play "Macbeth," but containing zombies, and "The Freshest Snow Whyte," a hip-hop version of the fairy tale. Both received grants for $10,000.

Walter L. Stafford said...

You absolutely are so damn funny in your comments. I thought I was the only old man that had relatives that got "knocked up" and have been knocked down for saying off colored words as a child!
Keep on keeping on....
As for PBS, NPR, NEA, WTFH or WGAS...let all pass on to the tenth planet in our solar system.

John the Econ said...

Recently, one of my Progressive friends sent me a meme that stated that NPR, PBS, etc only cost each taxpayer so-many-cents per year. I responded, "Great! Since it's clearly so cheap, why not send them $100 of your own money and then you would be sponsoring NPR for the dozens citizens that don't give a damn? That way, Nina Totenberg can spew whatever lies she likes and we wouldn't have any right to complain about it." Needless to say, I got no response to that because as we well know, Progressives have little interest in paying for things themselves. They'd much prefer that you pay NPR to insult you.

The "Arts": Remember when "cutting edge" art was synonymous with offending religion? Personally, my problem wasn't with guys literally pissing on Christian symbols so much as the fact that I was being forced to pay for it. If some emotionally retarded guy wants to do that on his own dime, I really couldn't care less. My god is bigger than that.

Of course, the "artists" of that age were lauded as being so "bold" and "brave". Where are they now? Where is the taxpayer-funded performance art of "bold" and "brave" homosexual artists defecating on images of Mohammad or the Qua-ran? Might it be because mocking Christian values didn't involve the risk of having one's head literally chopped off?

Wearing of the Grin: Brilliant! I heard Maddow doubled down on "fake news" stupid for a second night with that meme. And of course, like with everything else the left is desperately trying to much up, it all comes back to stick to them. What's the scandal? That Trump paid more in taxes than Obama, The Clintons & Sanders? Or is it that PMSNBC has 9 hosts who can't seem to pay their taxes?

And best wishes for Daughter Jarlsberg and the latest chapter of her life which is clearly on a good trajectory.

Emmentaler O' The Emerald O The Isles Limburger said...

My position can be summarized as thus: "Why should the gummint subsidize ANY "career" choice?" Where's the National Endowment for Engineers? Oh. Wait. People who studied REAL things like engineering, computers, et al can get real jobs. So, such things are simply ANOTHER FORM OF WELFARE disguised as something good for the country. Pheh. Dump all such programs.

50% Irish; one grandparent from County Cork, one from County Down - try THAT one on for size!

@Geoff: spot on regarding Guinness - and you can argue the point until you're blue in the face, but the Great Unwashed will still insist it's "thick", "heavy", "big" "like all dark beers..." Guinness is me tipple o' choice. I even prefer that somewhat insipid "pub draught" crap they've foisted on us to anything BudMillerCoors (InBevSABillerMOlson?) has to offer...

John the Econ said...

@Mike the Nav, we to enjoy a fair amount of PBS programming. And I'd be happy to write a check to them if I wasn't already doing so each and every quarter when I write checks to the IRS.

@Pete (Detroit), if you listen enough to NPR and then consider that there are millions of "smart" Progressives that listen to nothing else, it's easy to see the bubble they're living in and how they remain totally clueless to the emergence of Trump.

I'm afraid that @Emmentaler O' The Emerald O The Isles Limburger is correct; the trend has been for the government to subsidize career choices for which there are no careers. Academia is even worse. It's all self-serving at the expense of the rest of us.

JustaJeepGuy said...

The last time I moved, I decided that a well-timed house fire would be vastly preferable to moving everything.

Sortahwitte said...

I've lived around the world, but I have always come back to Oklahoma, my home. The tallgrass prairie is my favorite part, but I love it all. My daughter lived in Columbus for a while, but finally returned. I picked her up at the OKC airport, named for a man killed in a airplane crash, and headed to the booth where you paid your toll. The lady in the booth had a basket of wrapped candies and made sure everyone in the car received one. As we pulled away, my daughter sniffed and said "I know I'm home where people are friendly and kind."

It's been 20 years since I gave money to the state pbs station. That was when the Daily Oklahoman did some research and discovered they had almost 5 million in cds, and not the music kind.

Uncle Leprechaun said...

Today everybody, and I mean everybody, is Irish.


Shelly said...

Speaking of knocked up, I saw a great meme the other day. A great grandmother at a family birthday party was noticed chuckling to herself. Someone asked her, what is so funny, Nana? She said: All of you are alive because I got laid! Maybe I should use this line if my grandkids talk back to me. But since they are perfect, that will never happen. Wink wink.

Am I the only one sick of the argument that cutting this or that of the federal government is insignificant? It's only a billion dollars, which is nothing, they say. In what world is a billion dollars nothing? I say slash and burn and ignore the screeching. I'm sick of the politicians who have run up the debt and created the behemoth just to feather their own nests. Get 'em, Trump!

Happy St. Paddy's day. Being a blended European person, I'm sure there is some Irish in there somewhere.

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Mike aka Proof- I believe that concern falls into my "who cares?" category.

@James Daily- I think it's fair to say that Trump, the GOP, and the Dems are already putting on such a show that we need not dedicate taxpayer funds to additional entertainments.

@Mike the Nav- I like many of those shows you mention, but that's not reason enough for me to endorse our already debt-ridden government funding things. I genuinely hope PBS keeps going, just not on our dime.

@Chrissy T. Hyphenated- I thought Gordon MacRae had stepped into the room for a moment there!

@Jim Irre- I'd like to cut the cable cord, and there are ample broadcast stations in my near-Dallas area that I could watch (if I liked network TV, which I don't, or spoke Spanish, which I don't). Truth be told, one of the things that keeps my cable umbilical cord attached is the existence of Turner Classic Movies. I need my fix of old movies!

@Kevin Cox- My daughter's pup is a chocolate pit mix, and just sweet as can be.

@Alan- Great song, and one that was new to me!

@PaBlum- Shalom!

@Judi King- I was (ahem) debating someone on Facebook about the merits of government funded art, and raised the example of 98 yarn balls that were hung on the wall of our embassy in Pakistan. Price: $185,000. I asked my debate partner to justify this in any way shape or form. No response yet.

Even when the art funded by government is (accidentally) good, it doesn't justify using taxpayer funds so frivolously.

@Geoff King- If there's no Irish in a body, there's no finer way to add some than with a wee dram o' Irish whiskey!

@Boligat- But who's counting, right?

@Mississippi Ronn- Thanks for saying so! I'm glad to be here amongst friends. It didn't take me very long after wrapping up Hope n' Change to realize how important this community is to me.

@Pete (Detroit)- I hate the argument that this program or that program "only cost you a few cents." If we can't cut the little things, how will we ever get to the big things?

And while I'm not usually a fan of Guinness, I'd be very happy to have one today (and who knows, the day isn't over!)

Stilton Jarlsberg said...

@Alfonso Bedoya- Somewhere in the HnC archives I remember mocking Harry Reid's "Cowboy Poetry" festival. Not that I have anything against cowboys or their poetry - I just don't want to pay for it.

And you're right that government waste of money on the (alleged) arts goes much further than the three groups mentioned in my commentary. Many public buildings have requirements that 10 or 20% of their construction cost goes to art. Which is why you end up with bizarre $400,000 junk heaps of metal stuck in front of public buildings.

@Walter L Stafford- My paternal grandmother never admitted to anything more than some "petting" with my Irish grandfather, but I'm guessing he told the story differently.

And glad you enjoy the humor around here!

@John the Econ- I'd also like to know if your Progressive friend would happily see just "a few cents" of his/her tax money going to assure that Rush Limbaugh would always be on the air?

As far as "cutting edge" arts go, they are the last ones I want to see funded...not to mention, the most hypocritical "artists" for sponging off the government. Truth be told, I've always found the "Piss Christ" to be a beautiful photographic image, conceivably making an interesting point about Jesus immersed in man's flesh-and-blood sins (note: this apparently wasn't the intent of the artist, who is just an asshole with a leaky bladder). But while I may find the result to debatably be "art," there's no reason in Hell that taxpayers should be paying for it. Frankly, when the government funds "cutting edge" anything, it's the taxpayers who get bled.

Regarding Maddow, I think it's hilarious that if she ever DOES get real dirt on Trump, no one will believe her at this point.

@Emmentaler- Exactly! Both of my parents were artists (including commercial art) and I've been involved in writing and music my entire adult life. Why should I be competing with "artists" who are receiving grants? If an artist's work is appreciated by enough people, they can make money out of it. If not, then real artists will create anyway, because they must.

And despite my earlier so-so remarks about Guinness you're kindling a fine thirst in me, boyo!

John the Econ said...

I have to admit that although we're glad we no longer pay the cable TV tithe, I do miss Turner Classic Movies; one of the few channels still regularly watched.

Only $185,000? Pikers! Want an example of "government funded art"?

"When a 17-foot tall wooden sculpture was installed in the FBI’s Miami field office in 2015, the government thought it was getting a great deal. The General Services Administration (GSA) commissioned the work and estimated that it was “likely worth more than the $750,000 the government paid.” But it’s currently sitting in storage in Maryland. Why? The sculpture got over a dozen FBI agents seriously sick."

"I'd also like to know if your Progressive friend would happily see just "a few cents" of his/her tax money going to assure that Rush Limbaugh would always be on the air?"

Considering the inherent unfairness in that government funded media is exclusively leftist, it would not be entirely unreasonable to demand that. And we both know it's purely rhetorical.

"Frankly, when the government funds "cutting edge" anything, it's the taxpayers who get bled."

Or peed on.

Crabby Old Bat said...

Moving is when you discover who your real friends are - the ones with pickup trucks. (Stole that from a stand-up comedian but I cannot remember who it was.)

American Cowboy said...

@ Stilton said, "Not that I have anything against cowboys or their poetry - I just don't want to pay for it."

Agreed. Being a part of a vanishing breed, REAL working cowboys, not the typical Rexall Ranger/city "cowboy", I understand some of what cowboy poets have to say. I also agree that as good as SOME few "cowboy" poets are I do not want the proceeds of my labor to fund their performances.

Don Surber said...

Change the locks.

madmanmike1980 said...

Here's what I think of PBS:

I'm reminded of this scene from "Home Improvement" (can't remember offhand which episode or the exact quotes, but here goes).

Jill: "This is coming from a man who thinks PBS is something women get once a month."
Tim: "No. What I said was once a month is enough for PBS.....And way too much of that other thing."


Rod said...

I call public broadcasters during the big funding campaigns every year to remind them that we do indeed listen and watch some programs and we used to be funding supporters but we are not now, nor will we ever be until the propaganda they call "news" is gone. It's not fair; but neither is misuse of their "cover" and their reach. It may have some effect: A NPR station that had & still has great music shifted their market toward the city, and in doing so they eliminated NPR news. The reason given was it's expensive and it's covered by another NPR station in the area. I listen to the one without NPR.

It's sad but tornadoes do real damage in Oklahoma; UNLIKE next state over in Arkansas where a big tornadic front came through and did 100 million dollars worth of improvements.

Anonymous said...

Il Duce in the background is a nice touch. You ain't right, but that's not a bad thing. Carry on.