It is that desired transformation—of the self, and of the society in which the self becomes a self—that marks [Cass] Sunstein as a public intellectual. And marks the ground of his failure. For the polity Sunstein would like to bring into being looks like the polity that already exists. Its setting is the regulatory state and capitalist economy we already have. Its ideology is the market fundamentalism we already pay obeisance to: “a respect for competition,” Sunstein stipulates, “is central to behaviorally informed regulation.” And its actors are the consumers we already are.

Corey Robin, “How Intellectuals Create a Public”