Winning the Budget Wars: Let a Smile Be Your Secret Weapon

By Manley, Will | American Libraries, June-July 2010 | Go to article overview

Winning the Budget Wars: Let a Smile Be Your Secret Weapon


Manley, Will, American Libraries


Library publications and blogs are filled with two types of articles these days: horror stories and fantasies.

First, the horror stories. These are the news reports of budget cuts, most of which are in fact quite horrible. Academic Library X is getting its budget cut by 30%; School District Y is bring all of its credentialed librarians; and Public Library Z is closing seven of its 10 branch libraries. There's a budget war out there, and we're not winning.

[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED]

That's where the fantasies come in. Any number of experts indulge us in fairy tales about how we can start winning the budget wars. Take your pick:

* We need to do a better job of raising public awareness of the value of libraries.

* We need to do a better job of using Twitter and Facebook to tell everyone how important we are

* We need to deploy technological resources in more cost-effective ways.

* We need to develop new and creative streams of revenue.

* We need to think outside the box. We need to change paradigms.

All are fantasies.

Publicly financed libraries in schools, cities, and universities are basically supported through some combination of sales tax, property tax, and state income tax. Welcome to the triple whammy of declining retail sales, diminishing real estate values, and rising unemployment. You can't get blood out of a rock. I know this sounds defeatist and pessimistic and it's not politically correct, but it is what it is. Wishing will not make it so.

So, what can we do?

1) Don't trash elected officials. Believe it or not, the vast majority of politicians love libraries. Why? Simple. They love libraries because voters do.

2) When the cuts begin and your city, school district, or university starts holding public hearings so that the budget-cutting process will be "transparent," make sure you get your supporters out in droves to speak on behalf of the library even if you know it won't do any good. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Winning the Budget Wars: Let a Smile Be Your Secret Weapon
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.