Friday, May 05, 2006

Smithsonian must choose - public or private

The back door privatization of our public resources continues apace with the Smithsonian's secret deal with Showtime. I find Smithsonian Secretary Lawrence Small's justification seriously outside of the bounds of logic. He claims it will expose the collection to to new audiences. It would also significantly preclude small independent producers from accessing the publicly held works unless they can afford Showtime's fees. This may well generate revenues to keep paying Small's $813,000 salary but it's difficult to see how it's in the public's interest.

At least, for once, the Congress responded in a timely and appropriate matter by chastising Small over the contract and forbidding any such future deals and cutting some of the public funding. They should go a step further and either negate the Showtime deal or completely cut the public financing of the institution. The Smithsonian shouldn't be allowed to have it both ways.
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2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

this is not about$$ Small minds with big egos are attempting to put in place a cesnorship/revisionist history mechanism.

We don't have to wait for congress to act. For once good old american greed and self interest can be put to work for the public good. CANCEL SHOWTIME! Email smithsonian and showtime saying you will reconnect when they VOID this dirty deal and FIRE all employees involved with it. Sumner Redstone, who controls Showtime, is a savvy media mogul, and when he sees the numbers and the bottom line dipping, the deal will be toast.

So, less debating the details, more action.

Remember: bad things happen when good people do nothing.

2:25:00 PM  
Anonymous Libby said...

Good idea anon but first I would to subscribe to Showtime in order to cancel it. I don't even know what it is. I assume a movie channel. I keep a pretty basic package. I wouldn't have the second level except that I love the weather station but otherwise, I don't watch much TV.

6:53:00 PM  

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