Government Spending

Because Being $14 Trillion in Debt Means Not Having to Say No to Spending $600,000 on a Sculpture of a Fairy Riding a Toad

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 Via Outside the Beltway comes news that the devotion to the warfare state extends to stuff like this:

Department of Defense (DOD) employees moving into a new building this fall may start their days walking past a sculpture of a toad with a ten-foot fairy on its back. Federal facilities have never been renowned for their challenging public art, but critics have gone on the offensive since it was revealed that the piece, one of four finalists for the site's installation, would cost $400,000-$600,000 and would be viewed largely by the same group of about 2,500 employees each day.

More, god help us all, here.

Let's get it over with: You know, cutting this sculpture wouldn't even be a rounding error in the federal/state/local budget, so why focus on such chump change…

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51 responses to “Because Being $14 Trillion in Debt Means Not Having to Say No to Spending $600,000 on a Sculpture of a Fairy Riding a Toad

  1. Government art should be bland, non-offensive and cheap.

    This is none of those. I recommend we sack those involved…and if necessary complete the building in a radical different fashion (perhaps with llamas).

    1. They should build a large, hollow wooden rabbit. Troops could be secretly housed there, because you never know when you might need a wooden rabbit to deceive your enemies.

      1. I don’t think anyone is going to fall for that wooden rabbit trick ever again.

    2. Government art should be donated, non-existent or free. Or else a really great representation of the ancient mythological monster “Malfeasance.”

      Oh, and could we use alpacas instead?

    3. No way. It doesn’t have to be bland or non-offensive.

  2. You know, when they talked about repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, we warned about fairies in the Department of Defense.

    Now, they’re not only out of the closet, they have a toad cavalry!

  3. would cost $400,000-$600,000

    So they don’t know how much it’s going to cost exactly? Has the artist not decided how much it’s worth or did they have to get a union estimate on the instillation? “Dis jobs gonna cost a little mores than wes thoughts. See, wes didn’t knows about the unevens floors and so forths.”

    1. And don’t forget the double time as per union contract in anything involving fairies and toads. Luckily it does not involve llamas since that requires triple time

  4. Shouldn’t the toad have a freaking lazer pointer attached to its head, it is the Defense Department after all?

    1. The artist already compromised by adding reins to the toad to show how the DOD has leashed the bloated, ugly government (also by request). He drew the line at lasers.

      The original piece of art just had the fairy floating in mid air.

  5. A sculpture paid for by idiots, signifying nothing.

  6. By the looks of it, the DoD no longer screens for Acid use. . .

    1. -or- this is meant to be the new screening test FOR Acid.

      1. “Yessir, Brigadier, he passed the Random Drug Test,” exclaimed Capt. Berkley, “See there? Random drugs!”

  7. That is the ugliest “art” I have ever seen in my life. What goof-ball approved that thing?

    1. The same guy who probably thought this was art.

      1. It’s an award!

  8. What the fuck is the toad supposed to be eating?

    1. Brown Bazooka gum. Don’t even think about it.

    2. It’s not eating anything; that’s its vocal sack, which is used to amplify mating calls.

      1. Dear God – that thing’s going to mate?

        1. There’s a fairy riding on it’s back. Think about that.

  9. They should just park a Saturn rocket out front.

    Or maybe a pile of tiny arms, cast in solid gold.

  10. C’mon guys, it’s not so bad; aside for the fact that it’s not good art, not appropriate for a DoD building, and a lousy use of taxpayer money.

    Seriously. I don’t even get what the artist is trying to do, aside from perhaps offend or insult the folks trying to defend us.

  11. How about a statue of a goat, eating bales of hundred-dollar bills? What could more accurately depict the DoD than than turning money into shit?

    1. too esoteric

  12. Having used the online persona ‘llamas’ for more than a decade, I strongly object to the aspersions being cast here.

    A couple of llamas in front lobby would have a calming and beneficial impact on the harried employees passing them each day, they could work for free trimming the grass on the front lawn, and their – leavings – are sold as valuable time-release fertlizer.

    Oh – something useful and effective that makes money? And the Federal government? Ooops, like oil and water. My bad.

    llater,

    llamas

  13. Sorry Bald Eagle. Fairy-on-a-Toad is officially the new mascot of the infinite U.S. government.

    By the way, DoD: I’ve got some Jackson Pollack-style paintings that I’d love to offer you at the comparatively cheap price of $300,000 each.

  14. Seriously, that proposal had to be a joke, a dare. I can just see a bunch of artistes sitting around, saying “The Department of Defense? I hate those guys. Lets bang out the stupidest, most grotesque lawn turd that we can and submit it, to let them know what we think of them.”

    And, bang, next thing you know, they won.

  15. lol, hey its only money! No big deal lol.

    http://www.anon-tools.no.tc

    1. How true, anon bot; how true.

  16. Gummint art should be non-existent. If someone wants to donate something, all well and good. But the gummint should not be in the business of buying “art”.

  17. PS: As for the question of why even bother getting worked up about this crap, it’s chump change, the answer is simple – this is a start. It is a target rich environment, stop it all.

    1. I bet I could make that chump change last a while.

  18. Why not sculptures of American fighting heroes? Andy Jackson, Cump Sherman, Autie Custer, Willam Calley,
    the Abu Ghirab dudes?

  19. Fairy = the Ascended One

    Toad = Bitter racist hillbilly gun-toting biblethumping Amerikkkanz

    duh

  20. That’s fucking government efficiency for ya: paying $600,000 for something you could pick up at Wal-mart.

  21. Now if the fairy was topless and spewing milk into the toad’s eyes, THAT would be worth 600 grand.

  22. Here’s to the day that the education departments have all the money they need and the Pentagon has to hold a bake sale to buy fairy-on-toad statues.

    No wait, that’s wrong isn’t it? Let me go away and work on it a while.

  23. Has this piece of art been vetted for its eco-friendliness? Has it been certified as carbon-neutral? Did its creation add in any way to global warming, create or rely on any chemical, toxin or otherwise hazardous substance?

    1. How much more ecologically diverse can you get than a simple woodland/swamp amphibian and a spirit of earth?

  24. Thirty-five comments, and not one speculating on the toad’s name? Nor what the toad is thinking about the fairy?

    1. The Toad represents the 3rd world, and the fairy elevated triumphantly on its back is America.

  25. Guys, guys. It’s a metaphor. Barney Frank is reining in Barney Frank as only Barney Frank can.

  26. I want to know how artists score these kinds of grants.

    I have an artist friend who last month built a pirate ship out of shopping carts. It took 20 people to push it down the street. It had a mast and a poop deck and everything. He deserves the money more than whoever it is who is building this cliched tasteless fairy on a toad bullshit.

    1. If a fairy standing on top of a toad while stuffing a ball gag in its throat is cliched, I really need to work on my avant-garde bona fides.

  27. The real question is whether a licensed designer signed off on the sculpture.

  28. We stop buying useless, ugly art for a federal building that only federal workers will see on their way to “work”, and the next thing you know we’re SOMALIA!!!!!!!!11!!!!!!one!!

    Also, ROADZ!

  29. Got that beat. In my town, Camarillo, CA, the city council has approved $4.1 million to build a “bird park” where locals can let their parrots socialize.

  30. one of four finalists for the site’s installation,

    I checked the link to the original Outside the Beltway article, I couldn’t fine the most pressing piece of information: “What do the other finalists entries look like?

    I shudder to think how “bad” they could be. But like a car crash, I still want to look!

  31. In the DoD’s defense, there may be some wacky code requiring “art.” If you don’t shell out XX% of your total cost in “art,” the state takes it out of your hide in an “art mitigation fee.” Which is usually twice as high as they are requiring you spend on “art.” At least that is what is true in the land of fruits and nuts, California. Some wacky legislator in Virginia may have brought it there and passed it, tagged on to a bill to help widows and orphans.

    Thanks to this nonsense in California, way too much money was spent in Livermore on misspelling authors’ names for a mosaic and way too much money was spent in Berkeley on a sculpture with dogs humping.

    Sometimes, just to get rid of the headache, the “Owner’s Representative” just hands the job over to an overpaid “art consultant” without really paying too much attention to what is happening. The OR is too busy making sure that the light weight concrete is light weight, that the BIM drawings line up, that the GC is not trying to rip them off… to pay too much attention to whatever the hell the “art consultant” is doing… And the “art” goes in at the end, when the OR and everyone else it too tired to think about it.

    (Personally, I think the “art consultant” just gives the job to his cousin… And lo! Now there is a fairy on a frog at the DoD…)

    My proposal is to through about a third of the amount being extorted for “art” at Cheap Pete’s for frames, and the other third at someone who is a pretty good photographer and call it a day. It will be better… Than a fairy riding a toad…

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