Date: Thu, 22 Jun 1995 18:27:57 -0400 From: "H. Stephen Straight (Binghamton University/SUNY)" Subject: Re: A Dumb Question about the NEH The VERY amiable Glowka/Kretschmar "debate", in which I find myself agreeing with both sides (as do the two of them, apparently), left out one prominent pro-NEH point. Ironically, I present this point despite my own (sour grape-ish?) displeasure with what I perceive as an elitist (rich-get-richer) bias in the NEH peer-review process. Specifically, NEH provides for the humanities as a whole, very much as NSF does for other disciplines, and as FIPSE does for higher-education instructional domains, a well-developed nationally-representative mechanism for the funding of discipline-based scholarly research. To abandon these national clearinghouses for research would be as ridiculous (and as reasonable, if you have a mind to do it) as to abandon the MLA, the AHA, the APA, the AAA, the LSA, and (pick your disciplinary acronym) all the other national forums for the public presentation and publication of the results of the funded (and unfunded) research. Would we have each state attempt to duplicate the nationally-composed review panels? Would we have each state (or regional) disciplinary organization attempt to represent the entire nation in the composition of its conference program committees? Elimination of national "bureaucracies" in these area might quickly lead to the spawning of even more wasteful, and far less effective, state-by-state bureaucracies. (This is reminiscent of the well-documented fact that single-payer national health-care bureaucracies extract fewer premium dollars for administrative costs than the collective costs extracted by the existing myriad of private health-insurance providers.) signature =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- H Stephen STRAIGHT, Assoc Prof of Anthro & of Ling, Binghamton Univ (SUNY) Director: Grad Studies in Anthro, Prog in Ling, and Lgs Across the Curric Box 6000, Binghamton, NY 13902-6000; Voice: 607-777-2824; Fax: -2889/-2477 -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=