America’s musical culture is being lost in an avalanche of cheap television, movies and music.
Most things in America today are proven in the marketplace.
We have the music we do today because that is what people buy.
But what about our cultural heritage?
Should that be put up at auction and sold by the richest corporation?
Unfortunately, it already has been.
The marketplace in America has determined that classical music, for example, is not popular, and thus all the classical radio stations suddenly disappeared a few years ago, replaced by talk and other more lucrative formats.
Americans allowed that musical heritage to pass practically without a fight. In fact, the largest classical station (WQXR) was owned and then abandoned by none other than the New York Times, that bastion of culture.
And why did the New York Times sell WQXR? Because the location on the radio dial had become worth millions, and the greedy folks at the New York Times sold out your musical heritage for a cheap, quick dollar.
How’s that for preserving your heritage? America wasn’t buying it, so it was jettisoned by the very corporation who claims to be the conservator and benefactor of American culture.
Remember the above in case you think anyone is looking out for your culture, America. The huge corporations are the ones selling and buying. You have been left out of the picture.
Eventually, there will be only the culture the corporations allow you.
It won’t be the New York Philharmonic, it will be the Burger King Symphonic Ensemble, conducted by whatever rock star isn’t in a coma. The symphony orchestras are all underwritten by huge corporations now, and when they pull the plug (it doesn’t make money) you can expect the symphony orchestra to go the way of the classical radio station.
Ever visited the Metropolitan Opera in New York, taken your child to see what was entertainment before television? I’ll bet not. And here’s why: it costs $200 a ticket. In Europe, where culture is not left up to the highest bidder, a ticket to the opera can cost as little as $5.
Yes, culture in Europe is subsidized by the government. In America, we can subsidize poisonous medicines, rotten food, killing machines and destructive energy policies, but culture is out of luck: there’s no money left for you.
And don’t whine about all the money spent by the National Endowment for the Arts. That money is earmarked for the cronies of the Art Power Elite.
No one ever gets an NEA grant based on merit. It is 100% dirty politics.
I predict that the New York Philharmonic will become the Burger King Symphonic Ensemble in the year 2062, if not sooner.
Now get me an NEA grant to study that.
Copyright 2012 Walden Pond Press