For a little while, at least, let gridlock take care of itself, shake yourself free of the toils of partisanship, and let your mind rove more widely and freely than the onslaught of 2014 and 2016 coverage will allow.
Overall, this is a prescription I have advised myself for years. Irrespective of your political views, be sure to expose yourself to distinct ones... and give them an honest and equitable hearing.
Sadly, it is most difficult for some to do this. I give you this example, one of the many comments following Douhat's column.
Mr. Douthat's piece rests on the untruthful assumption that liberals and conservatives are equally captive to the disease of epistemic closure. Liberals generally engage conservatives or inconvenient facts. In fact, such open-mindedness is integral to the liberal temperament. It's unsurprising that conservatives are the ones withering from a failure to contend with a changing world. Many well-educated conservatives boycott the NYTimes because this paper, widely and rightly regarded as the best in the West, refuses to coddle their delusions.
I read the National Review, the Weekly Standard, Le Figaro, The Spectator, The Telegraph, and the Jerusalem Post, but, even I have had it with the unrelenting torrent of revanchist, voodoo economics, and the incessant avalanche of racism, misogyny, homophobia, creationism, and climate-change denialism. I've stopped reading conservative papers to put my own assumptions through the fire (Iron sharpeneth iron. Prov. 27:17) because they're unserious.
So, fellow readers, heed not Mr. Douthat, at least not for the reasons he mentions. Most mainstream conservative publications aren't worth your time, the only exception being the thoughtful American Conservative. Finally, Mr. Douthat recommends First Things, another publication I read often. Let me warn you – the writing is occasionally peerless but strip off the recondite theological ramblings and you're left with the voice of the American Taliban.
In 2013, read Nietzsche and J. S. Mill.
And a Happy New Year to you, too - LOL!