Thursday, April 29, 2010

Epistemic Closure

A brilliant term coined by Julian Sanchez, used to describe what seems to be the fact that American conservatives get their information and facts from themselves, rather than listening to the broader discourse.

Here, my favorite IR blogger discusses it.

It truly is unfortunate that the American Right has decided to embrace epistemic closure. There is no doubt a lot of very important opinions coming from the right, especially when it comes to financial issues that need to be heard. The argument that the healthcare bill is incredibly expensive is a rational, even integral one. Instead, the news was inundated with reports of Obama being a Socialist, Nazi etc., insane claims that don't exactly take a scholar on the matter to decipher. David Frum seems to be one of the only voices expressing such contempt for a Right, gone wrong. Many countries (I'm thinking the UK and Canada) suffer from a convergence of ideologies, so that it is almost impossible to parse some of the differences between parties. The US has taken quite the opposite stance. I believe that both approaches are flawed. Democracy flourishes with debate, as long as rationality might find a way through the chaos. If two sides are able to engage in some form of dialectic, or a conversation leading towards a greater understanding, everyone might profit. A complete convergence or divergence of ideas cannot be the best we can offer. Utopian in thinking, perhaps, but something we might strive for.