Not The Arts Council of Northern Ireland

Wednesday, March 15, 2006


Not the evil


behind the

invention of a new

form of mathematics

Many of us were privileged to be present at the birth of a new dawn today. Listeners to Evening Extra witnessed the unveiling of an exciting new mathematical Principle - the Principle of Denial. There is still some debate amongst experts in the field, but we will attempt an explanation. It seems that in the world of the arts funder, it is possible to apply the same set of rules and values equally across all clients and yet reach completely different answers each time. Now this may sound as if it defies all logic, but we can reveal how this works. OK - take one art council client and reduce their funding by half because Not The Arts Council has introduced the x factor (where x represents why) The formula for this process is ASOP times 1/2 x = why? And that is what we should all be asking. Now if this seems complicated we can tell you that this situation can be balanced out by the affected organisation (for argument's sake let's call it Queen's Festival) if they apply for Lottery Funding. However the reverse is also true. If you take another arts organisation who are losing Lottery Funding, this shortfall can be made up by giving them more ASOP Funding. Of course the real genius here is that this additional ASOP money is conjured out of thin air, or Regional Theatres as they used to be known. But that's OK because Regional Theatres can also apply for Lottery Funding under the New Works Theory. This Theory states that even though New Works is already oversubscribed it can provide the answer to Regional Theatres' problems without damaging the prospects of all those groups already surviving on these Funds. The New Works Theory has a corollary, known as the New Organisations Paradox. This states that if you are invented by the Arts Council, you can get more than £90,000 from ASOP despite the fact that overall ASOP funds are reduced by 3% this year, which is why you have to cut funding to existing organisations with proven track records.

Now that the maths is clear, we hope that you can all stop your whingeing and get on with enjoying the Renaissance in the Arts heralded by Not Our Arts Minister.


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