Alterman muses that this whole blogospheric “marketplace of ideas” thing has gotten a little out of hand. That it might be time to put a panel of experts in place. Sort things out, like. Otherwise, people might get the wrong idea:
Ever since the beginning of blogging-time, I have worried — in public and on blogging panels — about the loss of the media’s gatekeeper function. Now, I believe I literally wrote the book on this topic — and it’s about to go out of print for the second time, so if you don’t own it, hassle Cornell University Press — and I am as aware as anyone on earth, I believe, of the dangers of the misuse of that function. Almost all of my books deal with this tension in one way or another. But the fact is, the function is absolutely necessary. A democracy of hundreds of millions of people is functionally impossible for reasons it requires an entire book to explain.
Speech as disease! Some speakers are sick, and they may cause infection! He would justify quarantines. This man does not believe in free speech. He will not put his faith in the marketplace of ideas and the remedy of more speech.
The comments are well worth your time too. We are treated (again) to spectral deconstructions of the fascist-communist conundrum. Godwin’s Law is (tangentially) invoked. People make themselves look silly.
G’wan. Have fun.