*IF* Dish's claim is true, I agree with you. But it seems like such a strange leap, I have a hard time believing it on face value. I've said it before and I'll say it again, if MVPDs wouldn't have charged customers to get the locals in the first place, I think stations wouldn't have charged them for the signal. MVPDs could have done one of their annual price increases and said "we're now providing your locals for free, because it's important you get them". They still get their money, but the PR side make it look like they're doing a service. Carrying locals was a HUGE benefit for Dish/Direct. Whether you (general) want to admit it or not, but LiL was needed to make the satellite providers a true competitor for cable.