Wednesday, March 27, 2013


I've been contemplating starting a political blog for a while now, and today was the day I finally resolved to do it.
Why name it Wikipedian Protester? I am inspired by a wonderful XKCD cartoon depicting a protester at a political speech holding a sign that reads "[citation needed]". I think that this character depicts much of my attitude toward politics: a desire for political platforms to be rooted in facts, not just emotional ideology; a broad-based skepticism and inclination to inquiry; a focus on substance of policy rather than personality quirks. I'm the kind of person who selects their candidates by the planks in their platform rather than their attack ads.
I have a degree in philosophy, and I enjoy examining and discussing multiple sides of an issue. One of the things that a philosophy background teaches you is that many questions have very good arguments on all sides, and that extensive discussion may lead you to less certainty in the end than when you began. On the other hand, it also teaches you that an entire argument may be built on a small element, without which it tumbles like a house of cards. I was led to study philosophy through political discussions I had while living abroad, where I found that basic positions that I had thought were universal were not in fact positions held by much of the rest of the world, but rather, they were assumptions originating from my American background. This led me to realize that *everything* is up for discussion, even the things I haven't thought to question yet.
That being said, what I hope this blog will become is a place for me to record, organize, and discuss political issues. The idea of recording my political thoughts and discussions comes from the fact that I frequently find myself wanting to refer back to a point discussed or an article referenced in a previous discussion. Organization is related to effectively cataloging those points and articles and collecting them in a single repository that is easy to locate, but it is also related to having a place to organize and sort through my own thoughts on a matter before responding to others. Often, there are many things to be considered, and I sometimes struggle to distill my thoughts to what is most appropriate and pertinent to mention in a particular situation. Discussion with commenters is at this juncture mostly a hope, and may at first be limited to some dialectic with the objections that occur to me that could be raised by an opposing viewpoint. I hope that the ultimate result will be a forum where people can discuss issues in a civil manner with respect toward one another and open ears and eyes on all sides of any given issue.

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