1 NOVEMBER 1963, Page 7

Thank Them No Thankings

I found it a little odd that the Sunday Telegraph in the course of a well-deserved editorial tribute to Encounter should have chosen to assert that the magazine enjoys a subsidy from the Foreign Office. This is denied with vehemence by the editors of Encounter, and the Foreign Office has commented that, un- fortunately, it has no funds available for sub- sidising magazines like Encounter. The fact is that Encounter does receive a subsidy of about 15 per cent of its editorial expenses from the Congress for Cultural Freedom which itself lives on a number of grants from the Ford Founda- tion and other, similar, bodies in the US and Europe. Since the Sunday Telegraph evidently approves of Encounter, I can't for the life of me imagine why it should publish a story which can only cast doubts on the latter's editorial independence. As a taxpayer one might wish that public funds were spent as intelligently as this, but it is its evident freedom from any governmental control which makes Encounter's fighting liberalism so valuable.