Yesterday, the Republican Study Committee, a group of House Republicans “organized for the purpose of advancing a conservative social and economic agenda,” announced a proposal to cut government spending; among the proposed cuts is the complete elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. I was amused to see that the animus to arts spending among this particular branch of conservatism has become so ingrained and predictable that nobody on the RSC felt the need to defend, justify, or even mention those line items. (Maybe arts organizations should start front-loading their economic-impact studies with a bunch of cherry-picked Friedrich Hayek quotes or something.) Then again, the RSC has bigger fish to fry:
Every component of our plan will undoubtedly raise the ire of one group or another, whether it is labor unions who want more benefits or Angora goat herders who want more subsidies.
An angora curtain has descended across the landscape of American free enterprise! Ed Wood, threat to democracy.
Anyway, when the RSC chairman complains that a “bigger and more intrusive government leads to a weaker and less innovative economy,” I counter with the existence of piano-shaped toilet seats:
It’s even better if you quietly hum “America the Beautiful.”