Creative accounting

When does 2 + 2 = 5?

My fear, when reading the following two articles, would be that logic takes us to a permanent cut in funding for the arts.

Logic tells me that 2 + 2 = 4.

An article from a business perspective which encourages the arts world to work harder to engage with business, on the same day that David Cameron tells us that public sector funding cuts may be permanent, leads me to a fairly pessimistic view that the arts are in for a tough time.

Not even Jeremy Hunt believes that private sponsorship can replace public sector arts funding.  In a series of recent speeches and letters to newspapers he has attempted to set out his commitment to public funding, and to put up a fight with the Treasury.

He may be right.  Maybe he has sacrificed the UK Film Council for a bit of extra funding for the arts.  Maybe he believes that the fragile ecology of the cultural sector can be sustained by some trimming and pruning here and there (for which read: 40%+ cuts in some places will allow for negligible cuts in others).

So how does one end up with an answer of “5”?

One should turn to David Micklem for an astonishing example of illogicality.  How else to describe the ‘optimism’ outlined here?

A timely reminder of how a straightforward process of Treasury accounting may not have the capacity to deal with the imagination of the arts world.

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