Sua Sponte has a piece on old school Socratic professors that is mostly approving of the method. (Waddling Thunder weighs in as well.) Perhaps I am succumbing to the apathy WT mentions, but at this point I can only force myself to prepare for class to the same standard as I did last year for those courses where the professor uses the Socratic method. Fear is a powerful motivator.
The panel system of preparation, in which one is called on once, perhaps twice, all semester, and asked to only know a predetermined set of cases, is the bane of my existence. It allows one not just to coast by with the hope of not being called on (a state of anxiety that punishes the lazy student), but to skip class altogether and only do one week's worth of reading at its scheduled time, cramming all other assignments at the back end of the semester. The incentives are bad. Bring back the Socratic profs! They could whip us into shape, or at least make our steadily increasing disaffectedness and sloth costly.