It seemed to me that you lost your temper in your diary today. I am not criticizing you for that because I have lost my temper many times on Daily Kos and your exasperation was clear. For many, the value of what you had to say about the "NSA/paranoia" issue was overshadowed by how you said it and prevented what could have been a very profitable discussion about that.
More importantly, I think the tone of the diary was unfortunate from the point of view of group dynamics. You are the leader of this group. And whether you like it or not, or are even aware of it or not, you set up, both by your words and example, the tone of how members behave towards each other. Your use of sarcasm and anger, I fear, will give the green light to increase this type of behavior on this site when people disagree with each other. Polarization will be intensified for a period of time as people unleash their anger and sarcasm on each other. That is simply how groups function. They mimic their leader.
One of the things that can help to increase productive discussion on such hot topics such as the NSA etc., is for people to ask for and give clarification, rather than just resort to insults or attacks. (I have been guilty of the latter as well.) Before things reach that level of polarization, there are steps that can be taken to calm people down in discussions and hopefully avoid some of the 'drive by verbal shootings' that litter our diaries. It has always seemed to me that a lot of the unnecessary argumentativeness that leads to name calling, hi-jacking, etc. etc. could be short circuited if there was some required step that could be invoked to clarify a disagreement. A version of your DBAD rule. A 'Time Out to Explain' Rule. Perhaps a step which could be invoked where both sides a) explained what they were saying calmly (rather than tossing out word bombs) and b) explained why/upon what the opinion is based.
From the point of view of group dynamics, it brings the discussion back to the topic and removes it from personalities and hopefully helps the conversation be more focused on content rather than emotions. And hopefully moves to a more productive and constructive goal. So, if people are about to fight, a "Time Out to Explain" could be called.
2014 is at hand and 2016 is around the corner and we have a lot to accomplish. Building a bridge between our many different sides would be a good preparation for that.
I thank you for providing this forum for us. It has been a great source of learning for me, and at times, a great source of frustration. As I am sure for you as well. I can imagine that running this site must get overwhelming at times. Forget about 'herding cats', - how bout 'herding mules' and 'swarming bees'!
Any way, thank you for all you do,