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Tom Tomorrow (with permission)

You'll be reading a lot about epistemic closure, aka living in a bubble. This review is from 2010:  

It is hard to believe that a phrase as dry as “epistemic closure” could get anyone excited, but the term has sparked a heated argument among conservatives in recent weeks about their movement’s intellectual health.

The phrase is being used as shorthand by some prominent conservatives for a kind of closed-mindedness in the movement, a development they see as debasing modern conservatism’s proud intellectual history. First used in this context by Julian Sanchez of the libertarian Cato Institute, the phrase “epistemic closure” has been ricocheting among conservative publications and blogs as a high-toned abbreviation for ideological intolerance and misinformation.

What's amazing is how long the bubble was known, and how little conservatives did anything about it.

National Journal on epistemic closure with the polls:

Now we know which side needed its polls unskewed. Before Election Day, Republicans confidently predicted they would pick up seats in both chambers of Congress, and that Mitt Romney would win the White House. The results shattered those predictions, and with them any sense of security in the numbers coming out of some of the best-regarded polling firms on the right.

"Everyone thought the election was going to be close. How did [Republicans] not know we were going to get our ass kicked?" lamented Rob Jesmer, head of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. "I don't understand how we didn't know. That's the part that's most puzzling and frustrating and embarrassing."

National Journal on epistemic closure in Boston:
Viriato deMacedo, a Republican state representative who served during Romney’s governorship, said he shuttled between Brown’s somber election-night consolation session at the Park Plaza Hotel and Romney’s event at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, leaving the latter despite the crowd’s upbeat mood after Pennsylvania results were announced, Obama won, and the Florida returns showed a tight race in a state Romney badly needed. “I wasn’t going to stick around,” deMacedo said.

“People are shocked,” he said on Saturday. “They thought there was going to be enough disappointment with the president over the economy that they'd see Mitt was the right choice. We thought turnout was going to be higher in Massachusetts so that he wouldn't lose as badly here and that nationally he'd get over the top.”

John Avlon:
The Obama Haters Book Club: The Canon Swells
Justin Green:
This absurd epistemic closure likely accounts for why so many Americans are shocked at the President's strong polling numbers. How could he possibly have a shot at being re-elected, people must think, if he is so bad for America?

Because the truth is, he isn't so awful, and most people know it.

As a Romney supporting, moderate Republican, here's my basic view of the President. He is a liberal man who has governed (whether by design or fate) in a largely pragmatic, centrist style. Obamacare has origins on the right, as does the stimulus, and his execution of foreign policy is not unlike his predecessor. (Argue about Israel as you will.) If you want to see a real liberal who would badly harm America, go chat with Jill Stein. Her policies are genuinely bad for our country.

Obama's? Merely unhelpful.

Charlie Cook:
But this weakness isn’t limited to the presidential race. The GOP brand has been so damaged that it even affects Republicans who don’t have self-destructive tendencies. When Todd Akin of Missouri and Richard Mourdock of Indiana put grenades in their mouths and pulled the pins, the ensuing explosions and shrapnel hurt the party and other candidates as well. A fair number of moderate Democrats were able to win in some pretty red states and districts—Heidi Heitkamp in the North Dakota Senate race and Joe Donnelly in the Indiana contest, for example, as well as House incumbents in extremely Republican districts, such as John Barrow in Georgia and Jim Matheson in Utah. But moderate Republicans running on correspondingly blue Democratic turf—such as Scott Brown in Massachusetts, Linda Lingle in Hawaii, and Heather Wilson in New Mexico—were dragged down by the weight of their red jerseys.
It’s time for a bit of gloating.  No, not for Democrats over Republicans, though I’m sure that’s going on.  It’s time for the math geeks to throw a bit of scorn at those insufferable, over-confident frat boys who call themselves political prognosticators, and who spent most of the past two years telling us that they knew how the election would turn out.  They bloviated endlessly on talk shows, explaining why their favored candidate would win, and how he would do it.
The Petraeus scandal is not a major interest for me (it clearly is for media who are more comfortable with scandal than policy discussion), but if it is for you, see Maureen Dowd:
So many more American kids and Afghanistan civilians were killed and maimed in a war that went on too long. That’s the real scandal.

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