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I was reading the Stump blog on Crickey the other day which is always a mistake, much like reading a Miranda Devine ed. Neither seems particularly generous of heart to those opposing and somewhat parsimonious with their supporting facts. This article was about how government funding to Quadrant magazine, the foremost intellectual magazine of the Australian right, has been slashed this year.

The author, some left-wing fanatic with less than half a brain, recounts how she wanted to read an article in Quadrant without paying for it going so far as to read it in a newsagency and then comes the following…

And then, after all this effort to avoid swelling the Quadrant coffers, the next day’s Crikeyreminded me that I already pay for the ****ing thing. We all do , via the Australia Council funding – even if we’re paying $15 000 less this year than last.

So to the powers-that-be on the Australia Council – can I have my money back, please? I promise to donate it to the first struggling performance poet that crosses my path, no matter how embarrassingly awful they are.

My first thought: A thousand small government conservatives are rolling with laughter at the irony that she wants the freedom to choose how her money is spent, and not to give that choice to the government.

My second thought: She wants the freedom to choose how her money is spent and not to give that choice to the government.

Now that is exactly why culture subsidies are wrong. This woman, as intolerant of opposing opinions as she is, does not want to pay for Quadrant any more than I want to pay for postmodernist idiots pretending to be artists. I don’t wholly subscribe to small government ideology – after all, government expenditure is vastly more effective than charity or privately organised infrastructure projects but I think its hilarious how well she makes the point.

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