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20/20 Vargas Says Goodbye To Stossel

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(Vargas) This is a noteworthy day for all of us at 20/20. Our colleague and my co-host John Stossel is leaving ABC news and this program after nearly 3 decades and hundreds of stories and specials. (Vargas) For 28 years, John Stossel has been one of the most distinctive voices at ABC News and for that matter, in all of journalism. Confrontational. (Ted Turner) There's nothing more to say. Goodbye. I'm walking off the set. Controversial. (Interior secretary Bruce Babbit): I'm going to fire who ever scheduled this interview. (Vargas): Provocative. (Stossel): I think it's fake. (Pro wrestler David "Dr. D" Schultz) You think it's fake? (Vargas) John's been our resident contrarian. (Barbara Walters) I could not disagree with you more. (Stossel) Stupid in America. (Vargas) Engaging and enraging viewers. (Crowd chants) Shame on you! (Vargas) with his commentaries, reports and specials. (Announcer) John Stossel goes to Washington. (Vargas) A courageous and unabashed crusader against what he calls, "Myths, Lies and Downright Stupidity." His distinguished career began as a consumer reporter at WCBS in New York, where his exposes earned him the first of 19 Emmys. (Woman) We are not ripping people off. (Vargas) Doors slammed in his face, but others opened. (Stossel) I wanted to ask first though. (Vargas) He caught the eye of ABC News, joining Good Morning America, unmasking business scams. (Stossel) It's supposed to cure ugly facial sag. (Vargas) And 20/20, where as a champion of the little guy over big government, (Gilbert Casellas - U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission): You know what? I'm going to ask you to stop the tape. (Vargas): He took on even bigger targets. (Stossel) What did you do with our tax money? Turns out, it's impossible to find out. Give me a break! (Vargas) In his signature series "Give Me A Break." John cast a skeptical eye, challenging conventional wisdom. (Stossel) Shouldn't they make tougher decisions about when enough is enough? Give me a break! (Vargas) Greedy lawyers particularly got under John's skin. (Stossel) You're a parasite. You feed off of the productive members of society. (Lawyer) That's ridiculous. (Vargas) So did government waste. (Stossel) In Pennsylvania, the U.S. Parks Service built this. (Man) It's the best outhouse I ever went to the bathroom in. (Stossel) It cost more than a quarter of a million dollars. (Man) It doesn't even flush. The toilet doesn't even flush. (Laughter) (Vargas) John liked to say that free minds and free markets made good things happen. And that principle guided his reporting in dozens of specials. Taking on issues like health care, (Stossel) Want a CT scan in Canada? Private vet clinics say they can get a dog in the next day. For people, the waiting list is a month. (Vargas) education, (Stossel) What if a principal says you're a lousy teacher? (Union Teacher) They can say that. (Stossel) And he wants to fire you. (Teacher) We say that's not right. (Vargas) He also uncovered injustices, like this Peabody Award winning story (Vargas) He also uncovered injustices, like this Peabody Award winning story about daycare workers falsely accused of sexual abuse. (Stossel) There was no clear evidence of abuse. Despite stories about torture and a 12" butcher knife, no child had an injury anyone could document. (Vargas) For the last 6 years he has been co-anchor of this broadcast. First with Barbara Walters, and then alongside me. He is opinionated. Tenacious. Even outrageous. (Stossel): The things I do for 20/20. (Vargas): But if you think we won't miss him, (Stossel): Would you ever jump in the Hudson River? (Student) No! (Vargas): we say, "Give me a break!" And John, nobody will miss you more than me. You've been my partner here at the anchor desk. I've been honored to share it with you. We've been supporters and collaborators and friends during the last 3 1/2 years. (Stossel) Thank you. (Vargas) I wish you much success. You've got a big job coming up. What is it? (Stossel): I'm going to Fox News Channel and I'm going to have my own show. A libertarian show on Fox Business, their new channel, where I can play around. So I will miss you, and I will miss all of you. Please join me there, and good luck to you. (Vargas): Much success, John.

Video Details

Duration: 3 minutes and 53 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Views: 257
Posted by: angelatc on Sep 24, 2009

The end of John Stossel's final 20/20 show.

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