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Sarah Palin trashes National Endowment for the Arts

March 16, 2011 |  2:58 pm

Palin JUSTIN LANE EPA Television commentator and half-term Alaska governor Sarah Palin trashed the National Endowment for the Arts recently, describing the agency as "frivolous" in a Thursday interview on a Fox News talk show.

"NPR, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, all those kind of frivolous things that government shouldn't be in the business of funding with tax dollars -- those should all be on the chopping block as we talk about the $14-trillion debt that we're going to hand to our kids and our grandkids," Palin told right-wing host Sean Hannity. "Yes, those are the type of things that for more than one reason need to be cut."

Palin did not elaborate on what the other reasons might be for chopping the NEA budget. But the government of every major civilization in world history has also prominently funded the arts.

The comment about the NEA came during a discussion of the ailing U.S. economy. Palin is certainly conversant with frivolous activity, but her grasp of the economy is weak.

Debt reduction would barely be affected by penciling out the small federal arts agency, which currently operates on a $161-million annual budget. Palin's support of a federal subsidy for the notorious "bridge to nowhere" in her state became a campaign issue when she ran for vice president on the 2008 Republican ticket. That local project carried a price tag of $223 million.

"Reality is we have 15 million Americans who are out of work," said Palin. Nationally, the nonprofit arts and culture industry supports 5.7 million jobs and generates $166.2 billion in annual economic activity, according to Americans for the Arts. The NEA is one linchpin in that sizable economy.

In the interview Palin made no statement advocating similar budget cuts to her home state as she recommended for the NEA, which is also in the cross hairs of Washington's Republican leadership. Palin's Alaska gets $1.84 in federal spending for every dollar its citizens pay in federal taxes.



Leavitt painted image 1972 Art review: 'William Leavitt: Theater Objects' at MOCA

Art review: 'Gods of Angkor' at the Getty

Art review: 'Thomas Gainsborough and the Modern Woman' at the San Diego Museum of Art


-- Christopher Knight


Photo: Sarah Palin. Credit: Justin Lane / EPA

Comments () | Archives (333)

This proves beyond any doubt this women has no class or brains.

To her credit, it is hard to support something you don't have the mental capacity to comprehend.

Spoken like a true parasite that grew up up in a state only made possible by the federal teat.

Oh oil money royalties from federal land--thx goodness for the state dividend.

Next she'll be chatting about how tough it was for her in Wasilla during the Good Friday quake and it's time for the Japanese to man up.


She would rather leave our kids ignorance and guns, everyone should be a chip off the old block. What's more pathetic is the nutcases who agree with her.

Yea Sarah, we all know that no great nation should ever support THE ARTS!


Most of the NEA's funding comes from other sources. Nothing to see here folks, move along.

can we stone her ?

"keep your government hands off my medicare"

Every major civilization in world history has prominently funded the arts.

I guess Sarah Palin feels more that she & Americans should be part of a minor, diminishing civilization? What a goose.

She obviously wasn't concerned about deficits, when she supported spending $223 million on the "bridge to nowhere".
This is not atypical -- Republicans have splurged hundreds of billions (tax cuts for the wealthy), yet cry wolf over deficits which *they* created.

This exposes Republicans for what they really are -- a pack of liars, who subsist on a fact-free diet of evil.

This reporter certainly is biased. I thought the news was supposed to be impartial. Oh, wait. This is the LA Times, liberal propaganda. On to the issue. I do not want my tax dollars used to fund The ARts nor NPR. Let all the left wing nut cases fund The Arts/NPR if that's what they want to do with their money. I want my tax dollars used for important things like roads, schools, and defense. Defense is necessary as there are some nasty people out there who would blow us up if we didn't have defense. Liberals are unbelievably stupid people.

With this logic, why should we have schools, Palin?

Art > Ammo

The government can cut the deficit by abolishing the NEA about as much as a family can save money by buying one less can of peas every year.

The one thing liberals do understand though is using other people's money for dopey stuff they like. The OPM concept is strong with liberals. Think gov't employee unions, the CPB, welfare for deadbeats ( ie, Democrats ), bail-out money to Fannie and Freddie, etc. The NEA is just another example. And then when taxpayers complain, they're of course racists, homophobes, xenophobes, etc. If you retarded lefties want what the NEA provides, right them a nice check! Pay for you want with your own money - not mine!

Thanks for the "In Case you Missed it" article! I am all for publishing every comment that Ms. Palin utters or writes. I have never been a fan of hers. But I do believe that if you give such misguided, misinformed, and misdirected political figures enough press, they will hang themselves with it, and eventually go off our radar altogether.

Now THIS, is frightening; this is one thing that I AGREE with this self-serving 'PAY ME!' opportunistic bureaucrat. Remember the crucifix in a jar of urine? Same 'thing' goes on ALL THE TIME......insiders, (just like Wall Streeters) bloating the value of NOTHING, if not TASTELESSNESS, and sticking it to us as a whole!! IF, it's so damned valuable, let some Fat Cat pay for it out of his or her pocket....then take a GIANT tax deduction = what a bloody farce!!

I love the comments posted here by 'drink the koolaid' righties, who are so wrapped up in their 'darn them libruls' partisan hate, either cannot recognize what an imbecile Palin is, or are just so awash in their tiny brained hatred of all things progressive that they cannot see the forest for the trees.

I get it. Republicans don't want to pay for NPR or the NEA. Fine. I don't want to pay for Defense or Oil subsidies or tax breaks for the rich.

Maybe if her daughter listened to more NPR, and exposed herself to more art and culture, she wouldn't be an unwed teen mom. On another note, pleeeeeze stop printing what this poster-child-of-all-things-wrong-with-our-mass-media-culture says. Pleeeze.

Before making a decision about where to make budget cuts, Sarah Palin should at least learn what she can about the things she considers "frivolous." It is well known that children who learn to sing and/or play an instrument will perform better in all subjects. The study of music increases the child's critical and analytical thinking skills. They will do better in subjects such as math and language arts. For adults who have not had much musical experience, learning to play an instrument will help keep their brains flexible and active.

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