The old arts funding model in Canada must change because it only benefits those who are connected. The government should not fund the author, musician, or filmmaker. If the rules are rewritten, the government can actually save money and stimulate an industry, or the economy itself. How? In the past Oprah, or Simon, would pick the superstars. Thanks to the internet, the average person can do that themselves. In fact, the Internet is democratizing the publishing and arts industries.
I want to propose a change for arts funding. I want to give you an example. Imagine going to a bar, finding a great live band but this band won’t go anywhere. Face it; the music business creates entertainers not musicians. My pitch is very simple. Every artist type should have a business number. Why? Let’s say, you want to invest money. You donor the money to that artist’s business number. They accumulate enough donors, they have a marketing campaign budget, and the donor has an automatic tax right off. Change that band into an author, or an Olympic athlete, or even into a sports franchise, or how about an indie film at a local film festival. This initiative would encourage money to come into the country and stimulate the economy and promote the arts. If this was in place, why would a business person have money in an offshore account. Let’s bring the arts closer to business and stimulate the economy in the big picture. This idea could save the American economy or the European economy too. If done properly, it can actually keep the spirit of capitalism alive.
Paul Collins, author of Mack Dunstan’s Inferno
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