Andy Rooney & "60 Minutes" Unleashed

Somebody took the leash off Andy tonight! Andy Rooney was in rare form! Not that this will be a shock to anyone, but Andy Rooney attacked the Bush Administration tonight. I thought CBS was going to have a new culture after the embarassment from Rathergate? I thought CBS, "60 Minutes", etc, were going to work on a new culture on reporting the truth with their news segments? Obviously, this does not apply with Andy. Not only was Andy sneering with his attacks on the Bush Administration and the military tonight, but his arguments were just not true! I realize that Andy has an opinion segment, but that still should not allow him to push un-truths.The first thing that Andy promotes that is not true is that the government has proposed cuts due to the Hurricane Katrina disaster. This is not true. If it were, I am sure that Porkbusters and Glenn Reynolds would be all to eager to report it! Andy's Claims:

"Now we have the hurricanes to pay for. One way our government pays for a lot of things is by borrowing from countries like China." Another way the government is planning to pay for the war and the hurricane damage is by cutting spending for things like:

* Medicare prescriptions- Not true- The government is sinking a huge amount into the Medicare prescription program so that seniors will be able to see cost savings on their meds. The new program will actually reduce an average Medicare recipient’s drug costs by 50 percent.* Highway construction- Not true- TEA-LU was signed into law in August, 2005. The Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (TEA-LU), known as H.R. 3, which provides $286.5 billion over five years to improve roadway infrastructure throughout the United States, is designed to reduce traffic congestion, make state roads safer, promote renewable fuels, and create thousands of good paying jobs. * Farm payments- Not true- via liberal Senator Tom Harkin from Iowa... Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) today said that upcoming Department of Agriculture (USDA) counter-cyclical commodity payments for 2004 crops are proof that the farm income safety net reinstated by the 2002 farm bill is working. Harkin, then-chairman of the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee, worked in 2002 to restore farm income protection that had been taken away in the 1996 Freedom to Farm Act. * AMTRAK- Unsure- The program has been a money pit since its inception. Amtrak always has had financial problems. Amtrak has run a deficit every year since its creation and has received over $33 billion (or about $1 billion per year in constant 1999 dollars) in assistance from the federal government in both operating and capital support during that period.Amtrak undertook a major restructuring of its system in 1979 in an attempt to get losses under control.The Amtrak Reform and Accountability Act of 1997 required Amtrak to achieve operating self-sufficiency by the end of 2002.The 1997 Reform Act also created the Amtrak Reform Council, a body that was to monitor Amtrak's progress toward meeting a requirement that Amtrak operate without operating subsidies by December 2002.The 2003 bill funds Amtrak at $1.2 billion -- the full amount requested by Mr. Gunn and his Board of Directors.The Bush Administration has decided to restructure AMTRAK.Bipartisan Amtrak Funding Legislation Approved By U.S. House Transportation Committee. I did find this... Amtrak Would Receive $2 Billion Annually For Next Three Years* National Public Radio- Unsure about this arm of the liberal media... However, if Andy got his information from an email that was going around,... it was a Hoax! "On NPR's Morning Edition last week, Nina Totenberg said that if the Supreme Court supports Congress, it is in effect the end of the National Public Radio (NPR), NEA & the Public Broadcasting System (PBS). PBS, NPR and the arts are facing major cutbacks in funding...." * Loans to graduate students- Untrue- On September 8, 2005, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee unanimously approved legislation that would reauthorize the Higher Education Act (HEA). First enacted in 1965, the bill authorizes the federal government's major student aid programs, as well as other significant programs, such as those providing aid to special groups of higher education institutions and support services to enable disadvantaged students to complete secondary school and enter and complete college. While it does not provide all the money for students (it receives funding from multiple federal agencies), the HEA student aid programs contributed 64% of all aid given to students for the 2000-2001 school year, which translates to over $52 billion.

Do these sound like the things you'd like to cut back on to pay for Iraq?

Well,, Andy, quite frankly, I think the debate is open! The information I have added behind each category is from a quick internet search on the topics. It is too bad that CBS could not do the same thing since the Rathergate scandal from last year. CBS, "60 Minutes" and Andy Rooney should make an apology!