Saturday, August 6, 2005

City hall vs. spontaneous order

City manager and resident Wormtongue Jeff Fielding, having bent the ears of council in favour of the creative cities concept, is now trying to sell his report to the liberal artistic crowd in a panel at the Fringe Festival, normally a receptive audience for redistribution schemes. But…

Several […] questioned the need to spend millions of dollars in public money on a performing arts centre most artists couldn't afford to attend.

"To what extent do you subsidize something on the high end?" asked [Julie] Glaser, who said he [sic] would prefer the city to help performing arts venues that aren't always busy.

"We need support at smaller venues (including the Grand Theatre and the Aeolian Hall) to be overflowing."
Unfortunately for Fielding's efforts to create a culture division at city hall, the leftists see right through the concept as a redistributive scheme to the middle and upper classes, although their objections are not philosophical but pecuniary. If Fielding swings a little swag in the direction of their constituency, their public complaisance can be purchased for all that matters. It would seem that complaisance is really all that can be attained given the remarkable lack of enthusiasm for the project in the city, suggesting that even if implemented, the creative cities report's recommendations will impact little more perceptibly than rises in property tax and a few more employment opportunites for like-minded people in the culture division.