Compared with reading a book by Professor Habermas, going to the dentist is a pleasant experience. He has made his career as a torturer – not of people, but of language. The esteem in which he is widely held is to me mysterious and itself of sociological and psychological interest, worthy of further research. Audiences have been known almost to swoon at his Teutonically polysyllabic vaticinations. He is largely incomprehensible; where he is comprehensible, he is either banal or wrong, or both. He is often funny, but not intentionally.
Let us take his banality first. At the bottom of page 69 of this short but frivolously dense book entitled THE CRISIS OF THE EUROPEAN UNION: A Response , we read with respect to his scheme for a world body that will deliver universal justice (modeled more or less on the triumphantly successful European Union): “But any design for a world order aiming at civilizing the exercise of political authority, no matter how farsighted it might be, must take account of the fact that the historical asynchronicity of regional developments and the corresponding socio-economic disparities between the multiple modernities cannot be erased overnight.”