Walsh’s ignorance and douchebaggery may be in a class by themselves, but his prominence is the product of forces that implicate the entire internet, the entire media, and our entire political discourse. What does it mean for the possibility of reasonable and informed debate when people like this have the ideal formula for winning the game we all, like it or not, are playing?
1) What exactly is this game that we are all playing?
2) Who are “we”?
3) Isn’t there a bit of a problem with lamenting the absence of “substantive debate … careful and charitable argument … reasonable and informed debate” in a post in which you describe the people you disagree with in this kind of language: “a moron and a bad writer”; “the Platonic ideal of a douchebag”; “a douchebag”; “a shameless voice”; “echoes the more general prejudices of douchebag politics”; “a gurgling font of reactionary babble”?
4) Sessions writes of Walsh, “His position is presumed from the start, and he adds nothing beyond scare-quoting and free-association,” and then a few words later he begins a sentence, “The whole ‘analysis’” … so this is intentional self-parody, right? That’s what the whole “game we’re all playing” stuff is about, yes? Please tell me it is.