Where did the planet Kamino go? Obi-Wan wants to know. So he asks Yoda.
“Gravity silhouette remains but the star and all the planets disappeared, they have. How can this be? A thought? Anyone?”
A young Jedi trainee answers: “Master, because someone erased it from the archive memory.”
The wonder of the Internet and digitized information is that you can always find someone to tell you that whatever you want to be true is true. Plus, whatever was true a moment ago is subject to revision and — poof — is no longer the case. Plausible digital deniability.
We just saw an example of revisionist history in the race for Illinois House District 112. Democratic candidate Katie Stuart of Edwardsville was at a rally for Senate Bill 231, the proposed school funding formula. She posted a photo of herself to Facebook and stated: “I sincerely hope the bill passes in the House with enough votes to protect it against a veto by the governor.”
Trouble is, the bill creates winners and losers in that House district. Granite City schools stand to get $2.3 million more per year. Edwardsville schools stand to lose $5 million annually.
A few hours later, she revised the post to remove any mention of the bill. “I sincerely hope the House recognizes the need to fix our funding formula for school districts.”
Incumbent Dwight Kay, a Republican from Glen Carbon, jumped on Stuart for flip-flopping. She called it a mistakenly posted draft.
Maybe we should just call it Kamino.
Whether it be government records, political candidates or Jedi archives, holding people accountable for what was is much more difficult in our digital age. There’s something to be said for print, but we plan to deny that statement online tomorrow.