Is it art or is it a ripoff?

Discussion in 'Media & Commentators' started by Flanders, May 1, 2011.

  1. Flanders

    Flanders Well-Known Member

    Sep 23, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Trophy Points:
    Back in 2000 I heard a news blurb on my car radio that said maintenance workers at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts were paid between two and three hundred thousand dollars a year. I assumed that the duties of a building maintenance worker included keeping the place clean. If so, that’s a lot of dough for cleaning bathrooms. I did not know the exact number of janitors that were earning two hundred large a year, but there were seven buildings under the Lincoln Center umbrella; so I was looking at some serious money in 2000. The article at this link talks about stagehands, etc.:

    Ahearn: For backstage labor, rich rewards
    Sunday, November 1, 2009
    By James Ahearn

    Youngsters who might read Ahearn’s piece should immediately see the need for a college education. There has to be a lot of competition for those well-paying jobs; so a master’s degree in the art of cleaning toilet bowls can’t hurt.

    Democrats created tax dollar funding in varying forms and amounts for every show business entity beginning with funding college drama classes, film schools, etc. I believe the Lincoln Center gets approximately 20 percent of its funding from taxpayers —— taxpayers who will never see the Lincoln Center let alone attend a performance. Worse still, every private donation to the arts is a tax deduction that is passed along to working people.

    Just so I’m not misunderstood, it’s only fair that entertainment industry luminaries, wealthy Socialists, politicians, etc., have some place nice to go when they don their tuxedos and gowns for yet another evening of blowing smoke up every keister in attendance. Much of that crap is shown on television. The message is: Every American should want to be just like those wonderful people. In truth, freedom-loving Americans are finding it almost impossible to avoid the influence of such people.

    And it would really be too painful to learn that taxpayers pay to make all of those awards; around 400 different show business awards annually. If you know for certain that tax dollars pay to manufacture all of those statuettes, plaques, and whatnots show business hands out please don’t tell me.

    It is the culture of tax dollar artists that is most depressing. Peer approval is everything because they all know they will be paid whether or not the public buys their product. Ticket sales are not important to government artists. Peer approval is all that matters:

    You love me. I know you love me.

    Show business consists of many parts, but most people think of movies as the cornerstone of the entertainment industry. Few realize that movies are the contemporary equivalent of the Roman Circuses during the time of the Caesars. Real killing was used to numb Rome’s citizenry. Fictional killing on film accomplishes the same thing although Hollywood doesn’t butcher animals in its games as did the Romans. Hollywood’s Caligulas concentrate on slaughtering people.

    Also note that dancing has become choreographed violence in movies. Many moviegoers who would not watch Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers for five seconds can’t get enough of violent martial arts killing and brutality in dance scenes.

    Censoring celluloid bloodbaths won’t work because then the movie-going public will be left with the touchy-feely heartwarming movies which do far more harm to the soul than do the bloodbaths.

    There are a few ——very few —— movies that qualify as pure entertainment containing no message worth mentioning. Simply put: Not enough creative people work in the movie industry who can supply the pure entertainment merchandise needed to keep movie theaters open seven days a week, or fill the shelves in video rental stores. Keeping movie theaters open is the main reason so much crap is produced every year. Crap and propaganda of one kind or another is the stuff that replaces the absence of entertainment.

    Unfortunately, it is usually Socialist propaganda that is most-often manufactured by the kissy-kissy brigade in Hollywood. Once upon a time in Tinseltown there lived a movie studio mogul who said, “If you want to send a message, call Western Union.” Nowadays, Hollywood sends more Socialist advocacy messages than Western Union could ever handle.

    Also, the accepted image of slavery can be laid at Hollywood’s door. That image contributes to contemporary slavery.

    Cecil B. De Mille, and Hollywood epics in general, instilled the image of the Pharaoh’s soldiers whipping slaves into moving huge stones into place for the latest pyramid. The subliminal message in Hollywood’s image is that government troops are not standing over me with a whip; therefore, I am not a slave. Tax dollar slavery is never mentioned. In truth, few people know the reasons for what happened last week —— never mind the reasons for what happened thousands of years ago; so how the hell does Hollywood know why and how the pyramids were built?

    Some historians claim that building pyramids were government make-work programs. That view makes a lot more sense to me than the one Hollywood puts forth. Ultimately, slavery of any kind destroys initiative, creativity, and true compassion which is fundamental to the growth of the human spirit; so how can an industry that is such an integral component of the slave-driven welfare state in this country claim to be an industry populated by creative artists? Hollywood’s denizens are about as creative as were the Pharaoh’s troops portrayed in biblical epics.

    Then there is hard core pornography to consider. There will always be fornication and numerous counterfeits; so there will always be a limited audience for that “art form.”

    Insofar as mainstream movies go, it can be said with some truth that movies not containing graphic sex scenes are nothing more than pornography for prudes —— show a buxomly female bosom or an ample butt now and then —— just enough to keep Mother Thumb and her four daughters interested —— but don’t go too far.

    When mainstream movies fad into history because even the prudes don’t want them anymore, hard core pornography will still be selling. I’ll bet you that Hollywood’s spokespersons never mention that bit of truth when they testify before a Congressional Committee about their artistic contributions to civilized society.

    Don’t ever expect the media, print or electronic, to criticize Hollywood. Just look at the amount of tax deductible advertising dollars Hollywood spends to promote their latest product model. Newspapers and TV stations would be foolish to jeopardize that income. Hollywood gets it from the tax collector —— the media gets it from Hollywood —— and everybody involved smiles all the way to bank. Everybody, that is, except people who can do without Hollywood’s product.

    Since I’ve criticized it’s only right that I at least offer a solution that will curtail, or possibly stop, the damage Hollywood is doing.

    Take every form of government funding away from the entertainment industry; including TV’s tax deductible advertising dollars. That includes subsidies paid to Public Television, and Public Radio. My suggestion will not amount to censorship, but it will hamper attempts by social engineers to micro manage every facet of American life with the help of propaganda tax dollars.

    Just to stress the point one more time: I’m not advocating censorship, I’m talking about funding. Let show folk say anything they want to say —— just don’t force everybody to pay for it.

    Finally, show folk are determined to label their efforts an art form. Having that definition accepted is essential whenever “artists” descend on Washington trying to justify their spot at the trough. Everyone knows about the “show” in show business, but how many people know about the business?

    The brief article in part two is the latest plea for funding. The new sales pitch ties funding the “arts” to the disabled, to intellectual property, to driving the economy, and even to claiming the iPod as one of their own.

    I don’t suppose it ever occurred to them that they should find another line of work to support themselves when they can’t sell enough tickets for their particular schtick. That’s exactly what us poor plebeians have to do.
  2. Flanders

    Flanders Well-Known Member

    Sep 23, 2010
    Likes Received:
    Trophy Points:

    In tough economy, Hollywood stars make novel arguments for arts funding
    By Christina Wilkie - 04/29/11 06:19 AM ET

    Arquette is one of a handful of actors lobbying policymakers ahead of Saturday's White House Correspondents' Association Dinner, and her trip is part of a joint outreach effort by the Creative Coalition, one of the entertainment industry’s premier advocacy groups. She spoke to The Hill at a dinner at the Ritz-Carlton hosted by the Creative Coalition and Lanmark CEO Lani Hay.

    This isn’t Arquette’s first visit to Washington to lobby for arts funding, but the star of CBS’s hit drama “Medium” said she wanted to reach beyond the arts’ traditionally friendly political audience.

    “I had an amazing meeting today with the RAMS,” Arquette said, referring to the Republicans Associated for Mutual Support (RAMS), a group of current and former GOP chiefs of staff. “Obviously, [Republicans] aren’t considered the party that typically supports public arts funding, but we talked about the economic impact of creative work and intellectual property, and we were all reasonable adults, so there was a lot of mutual understanding in the room.

    “As the country moves beyond a manufacturing economy, one of the areas we’re going to need to stay on top of the world is the creative economy: film, movies, music and technology. After all, isn’t the iPod a work of art?”

    Arquette isn’t the only actress exploring new angles for arts advocacy this week.

    Cheryl Hines, star of HBO’s hit “Curb Your Enthusiasm,” told The Hill that during a meeting Thursday with White House officials organized by the Creative Coalition, she stressed the role played by the arts in the lives of people with disabilities.

    “I met a teacher earlier today who uses music, among other things, to connect with [disabled] students,” said the actress, whose nephew was born with cerebral palsy.

    “As an advocate for people with disabilities, as well as arts funding, I know that any [budget] cuts will affect people who really need the universal experience of art, and in some cases, who can’t communicate otherwise.
    "These cuts could prevent people from having that outlet, and I want policymakers to understand this.”

    Hines and Arquette were joined at the dinner Thursday by fellow actors Omar Epps, David Arquette, Tim Daly and Marlon Wayans.

    Faced with proposed cuts to federal arts funding nationwide, some of Hollywood's biggest stars are adopting novel strategies for lobbying on behalf of the arts.

    “It’s not enough anymore, in this economy, for actors to just argue why arts funding benefits people,” actress Patricia Arquette told The Hill on Thursday. “I came here to talk to Republicans about how the arts drive huge sectors of this country’s economy."
  3. CherryWood

    CherryWood New Member

    Oct 9, 2011
    Likes Received:
    Trophy Points:
    This is a very interesting thesis, indeed.

    Is art the Roman coloseums of our age? I hadn't thought about it. I think perhaps social media, cell phones, iPods, video games and perhaps even message boards along with other communication technology are more likely to be filling that gap - socializing for the purpose of entertainment, current events as a hobby to distract from the effect of actual current events.

    It's easier to see your point with cult classic movies or pop music, say - rap. Obviously culture is in great part shaped by media, but culture in great part also influences media. In our country, everything is about what sells, capitalism. Culture is marketed so I think it's less about distracting the masses as cultural related art is about profiting from the masses.

    On topic because this is a capitalist society, I can't fault people for earning a good living, seemingly a very good living, at any job. Bravo for them. Six figures seems fairly high for janitorial but I would suspect it has more to do with trustworthiness and being bondable than the cleaning itself.

    Should the federal or state govenment fund the arts? I am not a yes or no person as you might have figured out by now. Overall, I think it is probably the place of the private sector to fund such work. However I also recognize the value of art in society and by this I mean public buildings, sculpture and other art related to public buildings.

    I think art does benefit (and occasionally damage) society as a whole. I think there is a place for arts funding in the national or state budget but that the scope is much too large at this time both in amount and in what is being funded.

Share This Page