Patterico's Pontifications

9/10/2009

NEA Communications Director “Currently Employed” (Update: Follow the Money)

Filed under: Government,Obama — DRJ @ 2:26 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

In the past weeks, Big Hollywood has posted articles on telephone conferences by the National Endowment for the Arts with artists encouraging them to help Obama’s legislative agenda. That smacks of politicizing the NEA.

Now there are reports the NEA’s Communications Director has resigned, or been reassigned, or something Politico says is utterly cryptic:

“The communications director for the National Endowment for the Arts is no longer in his job amid a flap over suggestions he suggested artists work to further President Obama’s legislative agenda.

A conservative artist writing on the site Big Hollywood first complained that the official, later identified as Yosi Sargent, had been on a conference call with artists aimed at furthering President Obama’s legislative agenda — a bit of a no-no for the agency, which does its best to stay apolitical.

The agency, for now, is keeping it utterly cryptic: Sargent is “currently an employee,” said spokeswoman Sally Gifford, who said she couldn’t comment on whether he is communications director.”

Maybe his status is UTB – “under the bus.”

UPDATE — In addition to researching an NEA propaganda timeline, the Washington times is also following the money:

“On August 12, a group of 21 arts organizations endorsed President Barack Obama’s health reform plan only 48 hours after a conference call in which a top National Endowment for the Arts official asked arts groups for help in advancing the administration’s policy agenda, including health care.

One reason the arts organizations may have been so swift to follow the administration’s suggestion is that 16 of the groups and affiliated organizations received nearly $2 million in grants from the National Endowment for the Arts in the 150 days before the conference call. According to a Washington Times analysis of NEA records, more than $1 million of that total came from the stimulus package.”

The Washington Times also has some questions for the Obama Administration at the link, questions that so far remain unanswered.

— DRJ

7 Responses to “NEA Communications Director “Currently Employed” (Update: Follow the Money)”

  1. Soaring through nature’s finest show.
    Denali, the great one,
    soaring under the midnight sun.
    And then the extremes.
    In the winter time it’s the frozen road
    that is competing with the view
    of ice fogged frigid beauty.
    The cold though, doesn’t it split
    the Cheechakos from the Sourdoughs?
    And then in the summertime
    such extreme summertime
    about a hundred and fifty degrees hotter
    than just some months ago, than
    just some months from now,
    with fireweed blooming
    along the frost heaves and merciless rivers that are rushing
    and carving
    and reminding us that here,
    Mother Nature wins.
    It is as throughout all Alaska
    that big wild
    good life teeming along the road
    that is
    north to the future.

    Poet_for_Palin (32486d)

  2. Check out our latest story on how the NEA gave $2 million to arts groups backing health care reform: http://www.washingtontimes.com/weblogs/watercooler/

    Dave Mastio (9939da)

  3. Mr Mastio – Is that legal?

    JD (28f89b)

  4. Thanks for dropping by, Mr. Mastio, and I’ve updated the post to add your link.

    DRJ (6a2898)

  5. Mr Mastio – Very interesting read. What is the NEA doing giving out home equity loans? Note the difference in reactions from Waxman over an incident orders of magnitude less political.

    JD (f52b33)

  6. We don’t know if what happened is legal. One thing we are sure of — we don’t have even close to all the facts yet.

    Dave Mastio (66e8c5)

  7. Corruption is increasing as fast as the US debt under this administration.

    SPQR (26be8b)


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