NEH crisis

Sid Harth BAKULA at
Thu Mar 2 23:59:09 UTC 1995

On  2-MAR-1995 09:06:42.3 RELIGION%HARVARDA.BITNET said to BAKULA
   > X-To:         Buddhist Academic Discussion Forum
   > <buddha-l at>
     I thought Members of Indology-L would be very much interested in the
     following posting with erudite commentary from my dear friend
     Richard P. Hayes.

     Sid Harth

   > Dear denizens of BUDDHA-L,
   > As many of you will know from reading other lists, Mara's forces
   > (known in the USA as the Republicans and in Canada under a variety
   > of labels: Liberal Party, Reform Party, Bloc Quebecois, Progressive
   > Conservative Party and New Democratic Party) have sewn hysteria
   > and obsession with balanced budgets among our population. Among the
   > many worthwhile programs to be given the nirvana option is the
   > National Endowment for the Humanities.
   > It must be admitted that I have a very difficult time being objective
   > about the NEH, quite simply because I would not be in the academic
   > world at all had it not been for their help. Twice during the long
   > trek from graduation to permanent employment I kept naama and ruupa
   > together by living on funds from NEH translation grants. These grants
   > made it possible for me to continue doing academic research at a time
   > when I had no other employment related to academic work. Now the fact
   > that the NEH kept me in the academic world may be reason enough to
   > disband it, but it must be remembered that it also sponsored the work
   > of *good* scholars, many of whom are members of this list.
   > It seems to me extremely unlikely that any commercial enterprise is
   > likely to take the place of the NEH in sponsoring academically
   > worthwhile work that has no commercial value. The kind of scholarship
   > that the NEH has funded is very unlikely to be picked up either by
   > the private sector or by State agencies. Many years ago, when Ronald
   > Reagan was President, he said that government should only do those
   > tasks that only government can do. At the time he said that, the first
   > thought I had was that the NEH was a prime example of an agency that
   > does a valuable service that that hardly anyone else (save perhaps a
   > wealthy eccentric) would do. And yet the NEH was already marked for
   > severe reductions in funding, and it was well known that several
   > influential people in Washington felt particularly strongly that the
   > NEH should be abolished (presumably because no one could figure out
   > how to make a lucrative television mini-series out of some of the
   > translations, dictionaries, encyclopedias, concordances, educational
   > software and other scholarly tools that they sponsored).
   > Being a Canadian now, I no longer have much political leverage in the
   > USA. Some of you do have such leverage. If you feel like using it in
   >the debates over the future of the NEH, you may wish to use some of the
   > information below, which I am forwarding from
   >RELIGION at HarvardA.harvard. edu.
   > Yours in belligerent gratitude,
   > Richard P Hayes <cxev at>
   > P.S. Some of you have expressed deep disapproval of my Republican
   > bashing on this and other lists. May I suggest that if my occasional
   > outbursts annoy you, you write your local Senator and member of
   >Congress and suggest that they draft a constitutional amendment
   >prohibiting the use of BUDDHA-L for making remarks critical of asinine
   >governmental policy.
   > --------------------------- Original Message
   > Date:    Wed, 1 Mar 1995 08:53:05 EST
   > From:    APCZYNSKI at SBU.EDU
   > Subject: (Fwd) NEH update
   > A member of the Franciscan Institute at St. Bonvanture
   > University has asked that I post the following message to
   > scholarly lists to which I belong.  It summarizes recent
   > congressional actions regarding the NEH and notes upcoming
   > deliberations.  If you would like further information, there is an
   > address you may contact at the end of the message.
   > ------- Forwarded Message Follows -------
   > Hearings tomorrow:  the Senate committtee considering reauthorization
   > has scheduled a public hearing tomorrow at 9:30am.
   > Witnesses will include Sheldon Hackney, head of the NEH
   > and a state Humanities Council chair.
   > David Barry, Essex College
   > Alberta Arthurs, Rockefeller Foundation
   > Walter Burns, American Enterprise Institute
   > Barry Gross, National Association of Scholars
   > There is some chance that those hearings will be covered by C-Span.
   > If you are interested in seeing the hearings, you may contact C-Span
   > by e-mail: viewer at
   > NEH is an important scholarly as well as a political issue.  It
   > funds 65% of all fellowships in the fields of history, literature,
   > philosophy etc.  Without NEH funding almost no great collaborative
   > projects in the humanities would be possible.  Members of MEDTEXTL
   > probably already know many NEH supported projects, which include
   > editions of works by Thomas Aquinas, William Ockham, John Duns Scotus,
   > and William James; translation of works by Augustine; a data
   > base of major Sanskrit texts; museum displays of Byzantine religious
   > art; as well as many of the widely available electronic texts of the
   > Jewish and Christian Bibles.
   > On February 22, 1995, the House Appropriations Subcommittee voted
   > to rescind $5 million from the 1994 NEH Budget.  Defeated was a
   > proposal by Sidney Yates to cut the budget by much less, $1 million;
   > the vote was along party lines.
   > This is the first of three separate issues affecting the NEH which
   > will be considerd by Congress this year.  The other two are the
   > budget for 1995 and reauthorization.
   > The process of dealing with reauthorization and the two budgets is
   > expected to take a long time; it must be completed by September 30,
   > 1996.
   > Individuals or department wishing to support the reauthorization
   > and continued funding of the NEH probably should send letters to
   > their congressional delegations, explaining NEH's impact on their
   > field and their university.  In addition, they may send xerox
   > copies of those letters to 36 other members of Congress, to the:
   > 11 members of the House Committee considering budget issues,
   > 11 members of the Senate Committee considering reauthorization &
   > 14 key chairs, leaders, and ranking minority members.
   > Names and addresses can be obtained by e-mail from
Sid Harth
`[1;36;44mRainbow V 1.11 for Delphi - Test Drive

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