The Right Coast

March 09, 2005
Dan Rather's Fall from Grace
By Gail Heriot

Like a lot of people, I have tendency to feel bad for powerful figures when they are publicly humiliated--even when that humiliation is richly deserved. For example, although I had never had much sympathy for Nixon prior to his resignation, my heart went out to him as he climbed onto that helicopter leaving the White House. It was just so final ... and so pathetic an end. Similarly, while some of my conservative and libertarian friends clamored for Bill Clinton's scalp, I couldn't help feeling sorry for him.

When I woke up this morning, I wondered whether I would feel bad for Dan Rather when he signed off tonight. Well ... the answer is no. Maybe it's because he's been allowed pretend that he is simply entering some sort of semi-retirement or the fact his mug will still be beamed into our homes via Sixty Minutes. Or maybe it's because I'm getting hardhearted in my old age. I'm honestly neither proud nor embarrassed by my lack of sympathy. It's just a fact that the answer is no.