Government support for the arts can easily go very wrong. "Indie" bands in Canada are often funded by the Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings (FACTOR), and Life Site News found this amazing story:
Canadian punk group "Living with Lions" has drawn outrage for its obscene anti-Bible artwork and representation of Jesus Christ on their new album – funded by the Canadian government.
The album, entitled "Holy S—-," is designed to look like a Bible, with black cover and gold writing, yellow, faded pages, and lyric layout similar to Bible verses. It is subtitled, "The Poo Testament," and represents Christ as excrement...
The group’s project was funded by the Canadian government through a fact the band acknowledges on its back cover. FACTOR approved a $13,248 grant to Black Box Recordings Inc. to assist the band’s recording.
Brian Rushfeldt, president of Canada Family Action, raised the obvious points of protest:
"While these disturbed individuals have the right to produce such hate the Canadian government has no right funding groups that produce hate and discriminatory materials. FACTOR must never receive one more tax dollar."
"What actions will Prime Minister Harper take? What would he do if this attack was upon Buddha or Mohammed?"
The Vancouver Sun reported the record label that issued the "Poo Testament" said someone doesn’t have a sense of humor:
"I’d like it to be well understood that the lyrical content on this record makes no reference to any religious themes whatsoever," Black Box Recordings co-owner Ian Stanger said in a phone interview. "To say that this band has a unique and sometimes provocative sense of humour is nothing new.
"We allow our artists to take whatever artistic course they decide to and we value the support of FACTOR through Canadian Heritage," he added, saying the album has been receiving plenty of support from retailers and media alike. "I think there’s a tongue-in-cheek element of this record people may be missing. I don’t think it’s meant to be a serious criticism or commentary on religion. It’s a joke."
This is not the first time Canadian Heritage has been critical of artists or albums with objectionable content receiving public funding.
In 2008, critically acclaimed electro-noise act Holy F--- was named as one of the main culprits in the Harper government’s decision to cut funds to thePromArt program after the band received $3,000 for a U.K. tour.
Most albums produced in Canada receive small amounts of public funding, especially albums by independent acts, which rely on FACTOR and other initiatives more often than not because they do not have the support of a major label.
Courtesy of our own country's leftish alternative paper LA Weekly, which first published these images, here's the Jesus as excrement image, with the caption beneath reading "The Ascension of the HOLY SHIT: The above image depicts the moment after the HOLY SHIT was flushed, but then inexplicably came back up the drain in to the heavenly 'throne'" :