Hugh Pickens writes writes: "Megan Garber writes that in high school, Paul Ryan's classmates voted him as his class's "biggest brown noser," a juicy tidbit that is a source of delight for his political opponents but considered an irrelevant piece of youthful trivia to his supporters. "But it's also a tension that will play out, repeatedly, in the most comprehensive narrative we have about Paul Ryan as a person and a politician and a policy-maker: his Wikipedia page," writes Garber. Late last night, just as news of the Ryan choice leaked in the political press — the first substantial edit to that page removed the "brown noser" mention which had been on the page since June 16. The Wikipedia deletion has given rise to a whole discussion of whether the mention is a partisan attack, whether "brown noser" is a pejorative, and whether an old high school opinion survey is notable or relevant. As of this writing, "brown noser" stands as does a maybe-mitigating piece of Ryan-as-high-schooler trivia: that he was also voted prom king. But that equilibrium could change, again, in an instant. "Today is the glory day for the Paul Ryan Wikipedia page," writes Garber. "Yesterday, it saw just 10 [edits]. Today, however — early on a Saturday morning, East Coast time — it's already received hundreds of revisions. And the official news of the Ryan selection, of course, is just over an hour old." Now Ryan's page is ready to host debates about biographical details and their epistemological relevance. "Like so many before it, will be a place of debate and dissent and derision. But it will also be a place where people can come together to discuss information and policy and the intersection between the two — a town square for the digital age.""
"Conversion, fastidious Goddess, loves blood better than brick, and feasts
most subtly on the human will."
-- Virginia Woolf, "Mrs. Dalloway"