The gag is that I don't always do this every week. Here's this "week's" narcissistic bilge:
"Wouldn't we all actually be better off if, instead of grading the morality, humanity, and righteousness of all others, we instead worked upon improving ourselves? This would mean actually working on change rather than anointing ourselves, judged against the standards of those of whom we disapprove. The too easily and consistently glib will accuse me of doing exactly what I condemn here, but that is just a kind of lazy desperation to dismiss troubling arguments. I condemn no person or persons, nor do I celebrate or redeem myself in any way. Of course I wish I were a better person. Of course I am just as trapped by my emotions, experiences, and self-centered ways when dealing with the world as anyone. No Zen loss of 'self' here. No large-picture arguments against selfishness or in favor of losing identity or addressing the defining oneness of us all."
Troubling arguments? The only thing troubling is how this guy writes all the time and never improves. You'd think he'd accidentally stumble into a coherent sentence once in a while.
Here's a bonus boneheaded play from last week:
"Usually in this column, I at least try to cover every minor thoroughfare branching off from the highway of the main idea, mostly to protect the argument I'm making from being dismissed too easily because of a factor not considered or a potential not discussed (of course, many of my ideas are dismissed, so the emphasis here is on the 'too easily'). What follows is just a brief checklist on some positions, so no discussion is fully rounded or being too carefully presented."
You protect your ideas from being dismissed too easily by smothering them in incoherent, irrelevant digressions? Give clear, well-constructed sentences a try some time. It will probably work better. Maybe people dismiss your ideas because they can't find them.