Not according to some trying to deal with the current economic meltdown.
The Artful Manager over at artsjournal.com posted an interesting piece yesterday detailing how support for the arts was removed from the American stimulus package by a timid Congress unsure if they could justify money to artists as support for American jobs.
Rep. Jack Kingston's (R-GA) remarks when complaining about the NEA funding (now removed) from the bill:
"We have real people out of work right now and putting $50 million in the NEA (National Endowment for the Arts) and pretending that's going to save jobs as opposed to putting $50 million in a road project is disingenuous."
For the record, I have worked building roads, and I have worked at writing poetry, fiction and drama. Both are hard (and necessary in my opinion) but, strangely, the road work was what gave me wrist pain.
Thanks to Michael at OAC for the tip.