Richard A. Arenberg has written a much more eloquent defense of the filibuster than mine. He is a former Senate staffer for Senators Paul Tsongas, Carl Levin and George Mitchell (who spent time as majority leader -- all three senators were Democrats.).
"The right in the Senate to debate and amend serves as a protection to the minority, fosters deliberation and compromise, discourages unchecked majority control, moderates extreme outcomes, avoids precipitous decision making, discourages domination by the more populous states, ensures the role of the legislative branch in oversight of the executive and assures the role of the Senate as a counterbalance to the majoritarian House of Representatives in our system of checks and balances."
Did any of you see the footage of Senator Paul riding the elevator with Senator McCain? After McCain ripped Paul a new one on the floor the moment was pretty awesomely #awkward. The staffers all looked like they wanted to die.