I definitely read much of that spirit in the article, but I don't think it's the only message / tone.
His attitude about fixing ball marks strikes me as extremely traditionalist and while not ridiculing, comes off as a bit dismissive. He's a little oblivious to why it would be a need. Maybe he had no experience with courses that had high volumes of play (inexpensive) or lacked an army of greenskeepers to remove the offending remarks? He clearly did not have the knowledge we have now that immediate repair by the golfer increases the chances of keeping the surface of the turf alive.
So the effective result of his perspective on fixing ball marks was in essence that if your course didn't have the resources to hire enough greens keepers to keep up with the amount of play the prohibition against players fixing ballmarks would mean the richer club would maintain an edge in superior and more playable greens.
The desire for the rule change on ball marks likely instigated by people who played municipal, or small semi-private courses who wanted to be able to play under the rules, but still keep their 'rinky-dink', affordable course as playable as possible.
See above. I agree there is a general rhetorical question tone conveyed as to what he thinks golf and its rules should be. I didn't quite read the ridicule. There's also hint of political undertone tangent to it that's likely OT.
I was going to make the same point. Mud balls were probably relatively rare in the sandhills too.
The issue arose due to the growing popularity of the game in the U.S. which likely has a higher proportion of courses with more poorly drained soils.
Isn't it more likely due to average landing angle with lower lofted clubs off the tee than the extra grass (though that is probably part of it)? Seems that typically being elevated with an extra sand base that in wettish conditions, many fairways are prone to get slightly soggier.