No. Those dishes were for C-Band and Ku-Band satellites. Those satellites are still working, but almost all of the broadcasters use encryption to scramble the signal, or they have begun transmitting a digital signal.
Furthermore, in the old days, you would get commercials during network feeds; however, you would be spared the local commercials. Basically, each local station gets about one minute per hour of network time to do local advertising. Basically, a typical commercial block consists of:
Pepsi (national spot) :30
Chevy (national spot) :30
Subway (national spot) :30
"American Idol Next" (promo) :10
Jim Bob's Underwear Emporium (local) :30
Your theory of "local news anywhere" is entirely incorrect. Every local station broadcasts from a local transmitter, not via satellite. Networks uplink their signal to a satellite, the local station in turn receives the satellite signal, inserts their local commercials, uses a microwave link (or optical fiber) to send the signal to the transmitter, and then you pick it up from the rabbit ear antenna on top of your set. Cable TV you say? Well, they do the same thing, except for all the channels, and then they put all the signals into a multiplexer and feed the signal to your house. The cable box will filter (tune in) each individual channel from the multiplexed signal.
The latest form of "broadcasting" now consists of "pitching". Basically, syndicated shows like old "The Simpsons" and "South Park" are sold as syndication packages. Uplinkers (I work for one) used to feed it out "real-time (you could sit in front of a monitor and watch it). Now, however, we "pitch it". What we do is have the shows delivered as a datafile (like an mpeg file on a PC, only better quality). Since we are broadcasting digitally, in part of the signal are "unused packets". We now take that mpg and feed it in bits (literally) and pieces. What this means is that in part of every signal, a little bit of the show is being fed the spare (null) packets. Each station has a receiver that accepts these packets and puts the pieces back together again to form a whole show. We pitch constantly, whether we are feeding a show or not. During a regular feed, we can continue to feed the bits, just not as many of them, so the background transmission is slower.
Back in the day, you could watch a lot of stuff off satellite, but encryption and digital broadcasting, resulting in a scrambled signal of snow/static, made the satellite dishes of yore obsolete.
Probably more than you wanted to know, but hey...