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Congress Slaps Hands of Smithsonian

by Anthony Kaufman
May 11, 2006 2:51 AM
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Finally, Congress is actually doing something right, much to my surprise, and actually staving off the inevitable corporatization of our public institutions. The New York Times reports today that the House Appropriations Committee recently demanded further information on the Smithsonian Institution's television deal with Showtime Networks, saying the pact "may be incompatible with the trust placed in the Smithsonian." While the Congressional subcommittee also sought to limit the Smithsonian's ability to enter exclusive contracts like the Showtime venture, reports the Times, they also cut the public institution's proposed budget by $5 million. I'm all for a little scolding, but it's just these type of budget cuts that are driving our public institutions into the hands of the corporate behemoths. One step forward, one step back. . .

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