Eliezer, nothing in the original post mentions anyone soliciting “an artist’s reaction” in any sense other than “a reaction from someone who happens to be an artist”. But of course I wasn’t there and you were; perhaps such words were in fact used.
Tom, you appear to have given an argument for never funding anything that has research as a major component. (You’ve basically proposed that the marginal utility of giving more money to SIAI is zero, and you’ve done so without appealing to any features that distinguish SIAI from other entities that do research.) Is that a conclusion you’re happy to embrace, or is there some way in which your argument can work without leading to that conclusion?