Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Thinking Long Term: To Sell, or Not to Sell, a Masterpiece

“In the long run, we’re all dead,” John Maynard Keynes once said in defense of his brand of economics featuring an array of short-term solutions. It seems like the state legislature of Iowa feels the same way. Faced with a budgetary shortfall, the Iowa House is considering forcing the University of Iowa to sell Jackson Pollock’s Mural (detail shown above), a painting in their collection estimated to be worth $140 million USD. “That would be like selling your grandmother,” claims Sean O’Harrow, director of the University of Iowa Museum of Art. Lawmakers suggest that such a sale now could help pay for scholarships in the future. But are they really thinking long term in suggesting this short-term solution? Or are they selling away future generations’ enjoyment of their cultural heritage in a moment of panic? Please come over to Picture This at Big Think to read more of "Thinking Long Term."

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