Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Minnesota Republican Hates Neil Gaiman, Capitalism (UPDATED)

Here's the story in a nutshell:

Neil Gaiman is a writer. He's a very good writer.

He's also a very entertaining speaker. He's so good that groups pay him to come speak.

He is, he freely admits, expensive.

A group who receives an arts subsidy from the State of Minnesota had access to some state arts money.

They offered to pay Neil Gaiman his market rate to come speak at a small library. He accepted. He did the job he agreed to do, was paid the agreed-upon price and, as it happens, donated the money to a couple of worthy charities. Everyone was, it seems, quite pleased (see "very entertaining speaker," above).

A particular Republican state legislator, however, was apparently offended by a talented and successful person getting paid the price he'd bargained for, for work he agreed to do, and accused Gaiman, whom "he hates", of being a "pencil-necked weasel" and "stealing" from the State of Minnesota.

Neil Gaiman delivered an epic, yet gentle smackdown: The Opinions of a Pencil-necked Weasel-thief.

Check it out.

Update: Said legislator has now "apologized for the name calling" because his Mama told him to. But he still has a problem with Gaiman getting paid his usual rate because, and I quote, "he's extremely financially successful."

Wouldn't Dean be calling this "Class Warfare" if a Democrat said someone rich should be working for free just because he was rich?


J. E. Medrick said...


At least Gaiman is positive, irreverent and roguish about the whole affair. I have extra-special respect for the clear way he explained the circumstance.

It's frustrating especially because this is money that was earmarked for exactly the purpose it served... yet people complained that it was used improperly? They need to do some fact-checking before they have a hissy-fit! I swear, people are ready to be up-in-arms faster than they are willing to be correct... (And even QUICKER to retract before apologizing...)

YA: Cheat, Liar
Adult: Shackled

JD Rhoades said...

J.E. the guy's pissed that the money's being spent on the arts at all. But he can't say that, so he has to find a person to hate.

Mark Terry said...

Yeah, I caught this on Twitter last night. The politician (whose name I already forgot) is doing an ok job of putting himself in the spotlight, even if it makes him sounds like a moron who can't keep his facts straight, not that the typical politician is overly concerned about factuality.