Cultural void at the debates

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Check out this smart Los Angeles Times piece about the “well, duh” observation that culture won’t be a subject for any question during the Presidential debates.

“If I were moderating tonight’s TV debate,” writes Times art critic Christopher Knight, ” I’d start with one question and a follow-up, and I’d wait for the flop-sweat: ‘Senator, name one great civilization in world history whose government was not a major arts patron. Now, what can we learn from this?'”

In the piece, Knight also drops in the interesting idea that the National Endowment for the Arts (which, he notes, has an annual budget equal to “not quite five hours’ worth of the Iraq occupation”) only allow its art museum exhibition grants for shows that are open free to the public.

Your thoughts?

And what arts questions would you ask if you were moderating the debate?

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