by Terry Jeffrey, Townhall:
Two years ago, the National Endowment for the Arts awarded a $25,000 grant to a group called Fresh Meat Productions, which is based in House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s San Francisco congressional district.
This taxpayer-funded grant, according to the NEA, went to “support a national tour of Boys in Trouble,” which it described as a work “about navigating masculinity and gender in contemporary America.”
What exactly was this production that you and other hardworking Americans paid to send on the road?
TRUTH LIVES on at https://sgtreport.tv/
Fresh Meat Productions has posted a summary on its website. “Boys in Trouble,” it says, “is a timely and urgent commentary on contemporary masculinity — these powerful dances place a trans and queer lens onto intersectional questions of embodiment, violence, Black queer love, whiteness, shame and posturing.”
“Boys in Trouble,” it says, “is a groundbreaking trans and queer examination of American masculinity’s deep roots in Trouble.”
Last year, the National Endowment for the Arts apparently decided that “Boys in Trouble” deserved an encore. It awarded Fresh Meat Productions with another grant. This new grant, however, was for $30,000, not $25,000.
This federal money, according to the NEA, was to “support the research, creation, development and community-engagement phase” of a “new work” called “The Lost Art of Dreaming.”
“The work,” says the NEA, “will imagine trans/gender-nonconforming/queer futures, challenging longtime fatalistic American rhetoric and constructs that deny these communities the space to dream about our own futures.”
This month, the House Ways and Means Committee approved President Joe Biden’s 591-page American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. It would borrow and spend a total of $1.9 trillion — allegedly to combat the COVID-19 pandemic and help Americans find their way through it.
But then there is a paragraph on page 41. It says the bill would provide an additional $135 million in funding to the National Endowment for the Arts. That is on top of the $167.5 million the NEA is already budgeted to receive this year.
Over the past seven fiscal years, according to the Monthly Treasury Statements, the NEA has spent more than $1 billion in taxpayer dollars — with its annual expenditures increasing from $138 million in fiscal 2014 to $179 million in fiscal 2020.
Did federally funded artists produce any great masterpieces in this period? Did American taxpayers get their money’s worth? Should we now use a bill allegedly designed to fight COVID-19 to pay the NEA an additional $135 million?
But there is something far worse in this $1.9 trillion bill than NEA funding.
On page 95, there is a provision that would authorize the government to pay 85 percent of the cost that laid-off individuals would otherwise incur (through this September) to continue their health insurance plans through COBRA payments, such named after the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act. The financial cost of this subsidy would be $7.8 billion, according to the Congressional Budget Office.