State funding of poets, poetry, and the academic criticism of poetry should cease. The public standing of poetic effects would then subside to a more tolerable level. We should still probably have too many people calling themselves poets, and we would probably still think rather too much of their output, but these errors would be less harmful. Even popular song, the most dominant source of poetic effect in our time, and not in receipt of state funds, draws some considerable fuel from the status of literary poetry. It too would fade in the absence of high prestige being assigned to poetics through state support and through the social eminence of the academy and its offshoots. These are all highly desirable outcomes; the illusion of transcendence is a poison to mind, impairing the aggregate judgment of our democracies, not to mention many disadvantages felt only personally by those so deceived. A civilised amusement promoted beyond its merits becomes a public nuisance.