Literature, Film, Dance, Music, Songs, Poetry…does it matter? An open letter from the HML!

“We’re only instruments of a greater power. We’re creators by permission, by grace, as it were. No one creates alone, of and by himself. An artist is an instrument that registers something already existent, something which belongs to the whole world and which, if he is an artist, he is compelled to give back to the world. To keep one’s beautiful ideas to oneself would be like being a virtuoso and sitting in an orchestra with hands folded.”  – Henry Miller, Sexus


URGENT: New proposed federal budget targets nonprofits.

Dear Henry Miller Library Supporter,

Our California nonprofit community — the fourth largest industry in the state by employment — would be devastated by the cuts in the federal budget proposed yesterday by the Trump administration.

Along with nonprofits, counties and cities would lose the crucial funds that help make California the beacon it is worldwide. 

Below is our statement, which we are sending to our California members of Congress.

Please send this message, or a similar one, to your elected representatives.

To find your representative contact info CLICK HERE! 

*   *   *
Dear NN,
The federal budget blueprint released by President Trump yesterday raises serious concerns for California nonprofits.

I urge you to closely and carefully examine this budget and act to protect California’s residents and the nonprofits that serve them.

A core American tenet is that a purpose of government is to provide for and promote the general welfare of the people, and that the government’s budget and fiscal policies should strive to provide sufficient resources towards that end.

This budget moves in exactly the opposite direction. It eliminates an array of programs that support the common good and the well-being of the public.

One example: Together the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities cost Americans just 92 cents each, yet spark the creation of hundreds of thousands of jobs and are crucial to the world-class arts of which we are rightly proud.

In California, one in every 16 workers is employed by a nonprofit organization. Whether an orchestra, a museum, a legal aid clinic, a community center or a health clinic, the nonprofit sector is a crucial industry benefiting society economically as well as through its services.

Again, I urge you to closely and carefully examine this proposed budget, and act to protect California’s residents and the nonprofits that serve them.


Thank you for acting on this!

Magnus Toren

HMML, Big Sur CA

The HM Library has received small grants from NEH and NEA over the years. It’s been a positive experience. The application process itself has helped us focus attention on long term goals that without the encouragement, process and money very likely would still be on the back-burner.

PS. News about how we are going to deal with the collapsing bridge to the north and the damage to the road going south will come in the next message. We have a plan for the Library – please stay tuned!

This Post Has One Comment

  1. bigsurwriting

    Response to your letter,

    Non profits make up the fourth largest segment of the Ca job market ? Is that the best use of personnel? Non profits pay no taxes hence, they are supported by all the other taxpayers. Do you suppose that the businesses that make enough profits to pay taxes like supporting that many that don’t share the load ?

    As a practical artist, I’ve made my living creating, I see a lot of waste and fruitless absorption of resources and energy by people and organizations in the non profit realm of business and art. A periodic reassessment is a good thing.

    When you give someone a gift of funds over a long period it begins to be thought of as an entitlement. Just the thought of not getting a ‘need’ fulfilled makes one reactionary and indignant. The call goes out to reject change and insist on the old status quo.

    Perhaps a more positive move would be to reevaluate purpose and results from a more objective perspective.

    If we don’t energize enough others to generate funds and people, perhaps we need to change. I, personally, think we need to change the definition of nonprofit. When your executives receive a salary in excess of double the average income in your area you are making a profit . . . When the most sizable amount of your income comes from taxpayers you are a charity, supported by your neighbors. I am willing to help those that can’t help themselves but that sense of charity does not extend to those that just want my money for their ‘good’ cause.

    I urge you to closely and carefully examine this budget and act to protect Californians from wasteful and extravagant spending on bureaucracies and nonprofits alike.



    Woodworker, artist, businessman, taxpayer.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.