The problem with Rather was he professed to be objective and independent and never was (or had not been for a long time).
In 1992 Dan Rather told the Los Angeles Times: “I walk out every day trying to have a big ‘I’ for independence stamped right in the middle of my forehead. I try to play no favorites, pull no punches.” [emphasis mine] He told NBC’s Tim Russert: “You know, my job is to be accurate, be fair and, insofar as it’s humanly possible, to keep my feelings out of every story. … I do agree that one test of a reporter is how often he or she is able to keep their emotions out of what they are doing and keep their own biases and agendas out of it.” (courtesy Jonah and NRO)
But as the Media Research Center points out Rather failed miserably. MRC compiled a partial list of comments indicating Rather's liberal bias. Click title for the list. Here's a few snippets:
“Tonight, savagery in the streets of Iraq. Ten Americans die in a single day, four of them civilians murdered, mutilated and dragged through the streets....What drives American civilians to risk death in Iraq? In this economy it may be, for some, the only job they can find.”
— Leading off the March 31, 2004 CBS Evening News.
“If we could be one-hundredth as great as you and Hillary Rodham Clinton have been in the White House, we’d take it right now and walk away winners....Tell Mrs. Clinton we respect her and we’re pulling for her.”
— To President Clinton, via satellite, at a May 27, 1993 CBS affiliates meeting, referencing his new CBS Evening News co-anchor Connie Chung.
“While Fidel Castro, and certainly justified on his record, is widely criticized for a lot of things, there is no question that Castro feels a very deep and abiding connection to those Cubans who are still in Cuba and, I recognize this might be controversial, but there’s little doubt in my mind that Fidel Castro was sincere when he said, ‘Listen, we really want this child back here.’”
— During live coverage of the Elian raid, April 22, 2000.
And, as Thomas Sowell says, Good Riddance.