Creative Economy AZ (My Take)

Based on the Gangplank Futurespective, one thing I promised myself to investigate was Creative Economy AZ.  This is an initiative to raise 1/10th of cent sales tax for the next 20 years to help fund the arts.  I spent a fair amount of time researching what they had online, but felt it was best to meet with those working hard on it before passing judgement.

A few weeks ago I met with Amy Heisler from Metro Phoenix Partnership for Arts and Culture and Sophie O’Keefe-Zelman from First Strategic to talk about the Creative Economy AZ Initiative.  Amy is extremely passionate about arts and culture in Arizona and it shows.   I didn’t learn too much new about the initiative as they do a great job outlining what they are about on their website, from the problem to the solution and on taking action.

I agree with the stated problem.  However, I don’t agree with the solution.  We are in one of the worst economic fiasco’s of this century, both federally and as a state.  With a state budget deficit of several billion and climbing I see little to no chance for this initiative to pass.  Beyond that, I think that it actually puts creatives in a bad light.  It makes creatives look like in the toughest time, that they are the first in line to look for a hand out.

Maybe, I am old fashioned, but this just doesn’t seem right.  I wish that the millions being put into PR, legal fees and lobbying for this initiative were instead being put into efforts to unite the creative class in metro Phoenix.  We are already seeing pockets of people working together to affect radical change in their area of influence.  Imagine if we were to put concentrated effort into getting people to support the arts that are already here and the movement that is already happening?

My Take: Our arts are severely underfunded, but raising taxes to support them in this economic climate is not the right approach.

That said, there is nearly always more than one path to reach an intended destination.

Music Memories

Today as I was coming into work Dead KennedysPolice Truck came on the radio.  It took me down memory lane so to speak.  I had rush of feelings of my youth days where punk ruled the world.  I even debated about putting bull horns on the front of the GTI for a fleeting second.  How funny to open the Wall Street Journal and find this article on music therapy used to unlock memories.  Music truly is magical.  What is your experience with music and the brain?

Can We Get Over It?

This morning I was getting bummed that I haven’t taken the family for an RV road trip in a while.  To compensate I went to the RV road mix on the iPod.  My mind was wandering and I found myself singing along to the EaglesGet Over It“.  My mind was on Phoenix and the words just struck a chord.

Let’s take a look at a few of the verses…

I turn on the tube and what do I see
A whole lotta people cryin’ “Don’t blame me”
They point their crooked little fingers ar everybody else
Spend all their time feelin’ sorry for themselves
Victim of this, victim of that
Your momma’s too thin; your daddy’s too fat

The number of times I hear that lack of success is someone else’s fault just kills me.  I hear over and over how people feel they have to leave Phoenix because there isn’t the funding or the network or the support or whatever.  The truth is there is a whole lot of crying going on and nobody wants to blame THEMSELVES.  It is easier to be a victim and feel sorry for yourself.  We need to GET OVER IT.

You don’t want to work, you want to live like a king
But the big, bad world doesn’t owe you a thin
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I see people “start” new things all the time, but I rarely see them finish them.  Why?  Because finishing shit is hard fucking work.  There seems to be some sense of entitlement here that because you have an idea and get it started that someone should pour mountains of cash in your pocket so you can live happy and carefree.  You know what.  GET OVER IT.

I think it’s best put by saying:

It’s gotta stop sometime, so why don’t you quit
Get over it, get over it

The sooner we GET OVER IT, the sooner we can start being awesome.  So today, when you go to blame your failure on someone else think twice.  Ask yourself, can I GET OVER IT?  Stop being a victim and start taking control of your success.