Let me try once more to make myself clear. I think Michael Sandel is a bright, lively, interesting person and, I suspect, a terrific lecturer. In the context of the Harvard community, he is one of the good guys. What I was trying to explain, with my references to McLuhan and [facetiously] to Woody Allen, is that even someone like that can be defeated by the form of his presentation, so that what would in another setting be effective teaching becomes a form of performance, of entertainment, and hence undercuts whatever he is trying to accomplish as a teacher. I did not think I needed to spell that out so flat-footedly. I thought I could communicate it wittily, by indirection. But it would appear that I was wrong.
It would not surprise me to learn that Jonathan Swift had a similar problem. [Sigh. There I go again.]