Die, Big Bird, Die!

They just can’t leave Big Bird alone, can they? This is from last Friday’s Washington Post:

A House subcommittee voted yesterday to sharply reduce the federal government’s financial support for public broadcasting, including eliminating taxpayer funds that help underwrite such popular children’s educational programs as “Sesame Street,” “Reading Rainbow,” “Arthur” and “Postcards From Buster.”

In addition, the subcommittee acted to eliminate within two years all federal money for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting — which passes federal funds to public broadcasters — starting with a 25 percent reduction in CPB’s budget for next year, from $400 million to $300 million.

Are they just afraid of large, yellow avian life-forms that talk funny? Or, hmm, you don’t suppose they’re afraid of balanced public-affairs broadcasting, do you? PBS still produces some of the best programming on TV—not just children’s programming and public affairs, but science and the arts as well—and NPR remains the best source of varied and balanced public-affairs talk radio. Here we go around the block again to save Big Bird!

You can read more about it on salon.com, and there’s a petition you can sign at moveon.org.

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  1. Charles Nicolosi
    | Reply

    That is absolutely terrible. I don’t watch PBS nearly as often as I would like to, but I’ve really enjoyed the shows I have seen.

    I try very hard to hope things like this aren’t politically motivated, but you do have a very good point, unfortunately :/

  2. Todd Wheeler
    | Reply

    Been reading your posts recently and thought I’d throw in a few cents.

    These attempts to kill PBS have been beaten back several times. I wonder if there isn’t another motivation, such as to distract the public from other cuts. Perhaps this is just being paranoid. On the other hand, I saw a recent report that NASA is cutting a huge amount of science for measuring global warming effects.

  3. Jeffrey A. Carver
    | Reply

    I don’t know how there can be any question that the cuts are politically motivated. They’re always proposed by the neo-conservative wing of Congress, and they’ve always been defeated after public outcry. It’s not like the Democrats have the power to stop the cuts on their own.

    Todd, your mention of the cuts to NASA’s budget for monitoring of climate change is another chilling reminder. (I’d actually intended to write about that when I first saw the reports, but life got in the way. Thanks for mentioning it.)

Post your comment before you lose your train of thought. (Mine already left the station.)