“The public sphere thus promotes ubiquitous commentators who deliberately detach themselves from the local practices out of which specific issues grow and in terms of which these issues must be resolved though some sort of committed action. What seems a virtue to detached Enlightenment reason, therefore, looks like a disastrous drawback to Kierkegaard. The public sphere is a world in which everyone has an opinion on and comments on all public matters without needing any first-hand experience and without having or wanting any responsibility. Even the most conscientious commentators don’t have to have firsthand experience or take a concrete stand. Rather, they justify their views by citing principles, and, as Kierkegaard notes with disapproval, their 'ability, virtuosity and good sense consists in trying to reach a judgment and a decision without ever going so far as action.' Moreover, since the conclusions such abstract reasoning reaches are not grounded in the local practices, its solutions are equally abstract. Such proposals would presumably not enlist the commitment of the people involved and therefore not work even if acted upon. Kierkegaard concludes that 'what...the speakers at a meeting understand perfectly presented to them as a thought or an observation, they cannot understand at all in the form of action.'”

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