Newswatch: On Top and on Trial

Dan Rather earns his $1.6 million-a-year pay by keeping CBS in first place in network news. Perhaps that is why NBC, ABC and Cable News Network gave such prominence to Rather's uncomfortable three days on the stand in Los Angeles, where he and CBS were being sued by a physician Linked to an insurance-fraud scheme by 60 Minutes. That slander trial ended last week in a judgment for CBS, but the experience was embarrassing nonetheless.

Presumably network rivals would not admit to Schadenfreude, the enjoyment of another's misfortune. There were, after all, worrisome legal issues involved.

Over the objections of CBS, the...

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