I have a theory about Rush and why they were so loathed by the music press back in the 70s and 80s. A completely unsubstantiated one.
Is it possible that in the days of mass payola for radio and press, that Rush were able to circumvent it? It seems that they were able to stay alive playing live shows, and that rock radio really eluded them up to about 1980. But once PeW was released, they were a massive draw already. Demand for their music on radio was already there, whereas, typically, many bands had to pay off stations across the country.
Critics were (are) part of the whole payoff BS. A label would pay a shit ton to a well known RS critic for a glowing review—not to mention give access to the artist for interviews.
Jann Wenner hated Rush because they were outside the money machine.