posted on April 06, 2006 15:12
Last year, Democrat leaders in the General Assembly put $400,000 in the budget to give to the Sparta Teapot Museum.
Earlier the foundation they (Mike Easley, Mark Basnight and Jim Black) appointed to give out the tobacco settlement money gave the Museum $590,000.
Now Congress has given the Teapot Museum another $500,000.
In fact, Congress budget includes $29 billion in ‘pork barrel’ giveaways – which is more than the entire North Carolina State Budget. This time the biggest offender is a Republican – Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska.
Politics runs off money. Republicans and Democrats in Washington are fighting over the Abramoff scandal, the DeLay scandal, and funding of ‘527’ groups. We’ve seen our own bevy of scandals – including Democratic House Speaker Jim Black – here in North Carolina.
But the politicians in Washington spending $29 billion for pork barrel projects to ‘win friends and influence people’ and get reelected tops them all.
Friday, April 07, 2006 10:01 PM
3 Comments »
IN general, I agree here, pork sucks, but…
The “teapot museum” is an easy target. It’s not just a bunch of teapots, it’s a fairly significant collection of art that people will leave the Parkway to go see (supposedly). Not sure where it’s supposed to be kept if not in a museum - in someone’s basement?
One man’s pork is another man’s economic development.
Comment by John Burns — April 6, 2006 @ 3:45 pm
But I don’t want to see a teapot! Why should I have to pay to house one?
Comment by Jim Stegall — April 6, 2006 @ 9:27 pm
I assume you probably have no interest in well over 90% of what’s housed in the National Archives. You got a problem with paying to house that?
Comment by John Burns — April 7, 2006 @ 8:45 am
Tuesday, April 11, 2006 11:05 PM
Mr. Burns, are you joking, or are you seriously comparing the national archives to a teapot museum? If you can't see the difference, I don't think anyone can explain it to you.
Thursday, April 13, 2006 11:46 AM
Not at all, Mr. Stegall, and thanks for misunderstanding the point of my post.
My point iss that whether or not something appeals to you, Jim Stegall, certainly should not be the standard by which the reasonability of a public expenditure should be judged.
Friday, April 14, 2006 12:33 AM
And I'M the one missing the point???
Let me explain it to you in little words.
The National Archives takes care of things that are really, really, important to our history and our culture. These things are so important, that they should be preserved for future generations to see and study. Because this is very important to all of us, we all help pay for it through our taxes, whether we as individuals are interested in any single document there or not.
Teapots are pretty. But they are not really all that important. They aren't in the same league as say, the Constitution, or the Emancipation Proclamation, or the treaties that ended World War II. People who like teapots are free to collect and display them as much as they want. But they have no right to expect you or I or anyone else to contribute a single dime to their hobby.
I hope this clears it up a bit for you, John.
Thursday, June 18, 2009 3:11 AM
The Smithsonian is part of the National repository of important items. Yes it has rocks, and insects, old space craft, paintings, and YES, god forbid, Asian and Islamic art, and lots of other stuff as well.
If the lowest common denominator of society ruled, all redwoods would be turned into chips for landscaping, all government buildings would be cinder block and Formica, and city parks would be simple flat grass patches that are most economical to mow.
A broader, deeper view of the importance of a full culture is important. If it is a museum that houses teapots, that is one view. If it is a zoo, or botanical garden, or a library, those are important too, even if some taxpayers never read a book by an John Updike or Vaclav Havel, or care about local plants, Japanese gardens, or seeing captive zebras and giraffes that are not native to North America.
My brother once said that minds are like parachutes, when you need them, they are not of much use unless they are open.
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