Thursday, 11 March 2010

No taxation without representation

Creative Scotland / Alba Chruthachail : "encouraging and supporting artistic and other creative endeavours which contribute to an understanding of Scotland’s national culture in its broad sense as a way of life"
Public Services Reform (Scotland) Bill (Ex)
Stage 3 (debate, meeting of the Parliament) Thursday 25 March 2010
Amendments should be lodged by 4.30 pm on Friday 19 March with the clerks to the Finance Committee

Write to your MSP before Friday 19 March:
You can find out who your MSP is and contact them here:

You can also find contact details for your MSP at the Scottish Parliament website:

I am emailing you as a constituent. As my MSP, I am asking you to vote against proposals to establish Creative Scotland, and for the universal pursuit of cultural rights in Scotland.

Reforms of cultural provision may be long overdue, but Creative Scotland has wider-reaching implications than the supercession of Scottish Screen and The Scottish Arts Council.

Creative Scotland solicits a fundamental change of a key aspect of democratic society. It would escalate risk and debt and restrict public discourse along narrow ideological lines. This change has significant implications for the many ways in which knowledge is currently produced and communicated in Scotland.

The unintended consequences of this shift towards an entrepreneurial ideology in the public provision of culture have not been properly investigated. Such fundamental research was not undertaken. Yet marketplace “truths” require far greater scrutiny, as has been amply demonstrated by the financial crisis.

I ask you vote against the establishment of Creative Scotland, and for fulfilling UNESCO treaty commitments towards a diversity of cultural expression in Scotland.

Stage 2 completion

Public Services Reform (Scotland) Bill (SP Bill 26)

The deadline for completion of Stage 2 was 12 March 2010.

Bill (as amended at Stage 2) (587KB pdf first posted 03.03.2010)

no regulatory oversight

Creative Scotland appointments : no regulatory oversight

"As Commissioner for Public Appointments in Scotland, I do not currently regulate appointments to the board of Creative Scotland. The Public Services Reform (Scotland) Bill is making its way through parliament. It has, I understand, reached stage 2. If the Bill succeeds in its current format, appointments to the board will fall under my regulatory remit. ... Given that the Bill has not yet passed, I can state categorically that I will have no regulatory oversight of this appointments process."

Papas Habemus

CREATIVE SCOTLAND ANNOUNCES ITS CHIEF EXECUTIVE: Andrew Dixon, Chief Executive of the NewcastleGateshead Initiative for the last five years.

Festival chief heads north to take Creative Scotland reins
“...He said he knew that the early debate around Creative Scotland was ‘antagonistic’ but now feels people in the arts community are more interested in the ‘art of the possible’. ... Mr Dixon says his favourite artist is Andy Goldsworthy and once said the things that made him miserable were ‘bureaucracy, form filling, jobsworths and people who are terminally negative’...”

What's sauce for the goose...

Are MSPs unaware of Creative Scotland's raison d'être - no artform specialisms?

Traditional arts ‘need a national company’
"Scotland’s traditional arts – music, dance, songs and story-telling – should have its own national company on a par with the likes of the National Theatre of Scotland and Scottish Opera, according to a new report commissioned by the Scottish Government. ... The document’s major theme is how the traditional arts can achieve the same parity of esteem with the likes of other publicly funded art forms such as theatre, ballet and classical music. It claims that in the traditional arts, such as highland dancing and folk music, “their significance and value is still not recognised, promoted and celebrated enough”. Other recommendations include: the creation of a Traditional Arts Apprentice scheme, matching young traditional musicians or dancers with an experienced mentor; the creation of a traditional arts centre; Creative Scotland to set up a specialist fund for the traditional arts; and a major study be undertaken into their economic impact."

charismatic ideology

"So the imperial cult grew. Its 'good news' was that Caesar, the son of God, was now the lord of the whole world, claiming allegiance from everybody in return for bringing salvation and justice to the world. Resistance was met with crucifixion. The system was based on sheer power."
Veteran BBC man Tusa will help pick Scots arts chief
"One of the UK’s most respected arts figures, Sir John Tusa, is to play a key role in choosing the figurehead for Scotland’s new cultural funding body. ... One of the most respected people in the UK arts scene, Sir John was managing director of the BBC World Service from 1986 to 1993, having had a ­distinguished career as a ­broadcaster, and subsequently spent more than 10 years managing London’s Barbican arts centre. He has also been chair of the Wigmore Hall in London and is chair of the influential Clore Leadership Programme for cultural activities."