Started as a tweet, but I can't fit it into 140 characters.
What makes an idea good, or "compelling"? What makes a person expressing an idea worth listening to?
I've been thinking about "Suck On This", the infamous Tom Friedman statement after "the war was over" in Iraq:
(it gets really great towards the end)
Friedman is a bit of a piñata because he makes all kinds of generally innocuous but-still-ridiculous statements, and has a really ridiculous bio photo. He's an architypical gasbag with a perch on some of the most influential forums for "ideas" that the english-speaking world convenes, which is a shame, but I think what he represented in the video above deserves special attention. It's above and beyond simple buffoonery.
As a nation, we have a dysfunctional political culture, and it's in part due to terrible information inputs. Like we say in my game, "garbage in, garbage out": if your inputs are bad, you can't have quality output. The fact that most congressional offices have a TV in the main area playing 24-hour cable news (or, also, that financial institutions play CNBC) is an enormous problem.