Betsy Woodruff has a very good piece up at NRO about why it is so hard to cut federal funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting — and it is good not merely because she quotes me, but because in a very short space she captures the essence of the difficulties. For instance:
It’s politically tricky, in part because of local boards that oversee PBS affiliates. Franc argues that since so many powerful appropriators have spouses on the boards, they feel pressure to keep the money flowing. Giving federal funds to causes that benefit the arts lets them enjoy the social advantages of philanthropists without contributing any of their own money.
She quotes me explaining some history on why CPB’s funding keeps surviving, But one thing that isn’t clear is that I completely, wholeheartedly support cutting the funding — indeed, eliminating it entirely. I was not arguing in favor of keeping it, but instead explaining why cutting CPB is a political loser unless, unless those who would cut it lay some careful groundwork first and plan out our strategy and tactics for winning the fight. I do think it is a winnable fight… but a hard one.
Those who want to win the battle should read Woodruff’s article to get a sense of some of the obstacles — and then strategize accordingly.
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