A quick excerpt:
The point I was trying to make about the arts in the stimulus package is not that the NEA funding ought to be removed from the bill, but rather that as artists we need stop seeing opposition to the arts as the sign of narrow-minded cretinism and instead form our arguments with some sort of historical awareness and sociological knowledge and, yes, understanding of opposing viewpoints. We have to learn from our total bungling of the NEA flap of the 1990s, during which artists couldn't marshal much more than sputtered "How dare you question us! We are artistes!"and a few airy generalities in defense of the arts in American society.