On the eve of Dan Rather's departure from the CBS anchor chair, the Los Angeles Times has a good piece on all the insiders at CBS who are bashing him. You know what they say, the worms always come out after it rains.
I guess the real question that people are asking now is, given that Rather has been consistently bringing up the rear in competition with ABC and NBC nightly news shows for almost fifteen years (thanks to Ratherbiased.com for the chart), why has he been allowed to hang around so long.
As sort of an answer, I am reminded of Howard Cosell. For those too young to remember, Cosell was the color guy for ABC's Monday Night Football from its inception in 1970 to when he was fired in 1983.
I hated Cosell. Everyone I know hated Cosell. I mean, back in the day there were sports bars where someone would throw a brick through a cheap TV set during MNF halftime. Yet Cosell survived for 13 years at MNF, almost certainly depressing ratings and turning potentially happy customers into unhappy ones.
How could this go on for so long? Probably for the same reason that Twiggy could be presented to us as a sex symbol. I mean, we all thought she looked like a war refugee on short rations, but nobody was listening to us.
My point (and I have one) is that the flow of information in our society used to be strictly one way, top down. The main street media would tell us what to think, and what we liked or disliked and if we didn't agree, well that was our tough beans.
The blogging revolution has given us proles a voice, and finally some information is beginning to flow from the bottom of the pile to the top. The msm, which has to actually listen to us for the first time, isn't altogether happy with what is going on, to one degree or another. But the msm is a business (actually its a lot of businesses) and while it might chafe at first to hear from the customer, in the long run it will be better for all concerned.