Epistemic Closure & the Reality-Based Center

The article below is encouraging to me on many levels. I have feared that I was a Texan committing the Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy. That is where you cherry pick the evidence to meet the conclusion you want to support. So over the last sixteen years since first observing that Republicans were beginning to behave more and more like people learning a dogmatic catechism, I frequently stopped myself & reassessed. I did not want to paint a picture that was comforting to me as a man who had dallied with Reaganism in the early 1980’s only to embrace a variant of progressivism in 1990.

As things seemed to become even worse with my old friends & acquaintances who espoused neo-conservative leanings, I hoped (prayed) for the best & I never believed that I  had figured it all out.

Now comes along this article from Bruce Bartlett which confirms what I had suspected was merely my biased use of anecdotal evidence. Moreover, Bartlett goes even further in detailing how very much epistemic closure, as first detailed by Julian Sanchez, is bringing about the self-undermining of the GOP and those who claim to be conservatives.

This piece is very much worth the read good friends of the Ether.

I know that it’s unattractive and bad form to say “I told you so” when one’s advice was ignored yet ultimately proved correct. But in the wake of the Republican election debacle, it’s essential that conservatives undertake a clear-eyed assessment of who on their side was right and who was wrong. Those who were wrong should be purged and ignored; those who were right, especially those who inflicted maximum discomfort on movement conservatives in being right, ought to get credit for it and become regular reading for them once again.

I’m not going to beat around the bush and pretend I don’t have a vested interest here. Frankly, I think I’m at ground zero in the saga of Republicans closing their eyes to any facts or evidence that conflict with their dogma. Rather than listen to me, they threw me under a bus. To this day, I don’t think they understand that my motives were to help them avoid the permanent decline that now seems inevitable.

via Revenge of the Reality-Based Community | The American Conservative.

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