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Robert Beltran: "The Prime Directive is fascist crap" by Mot - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 17:31:02 EST ID:/Ead/aA8 No.56073 Ignore Report Quick Reply
File: 1473283862646.jpg -(6501B / 6.35KB, 236x179) Thumbnail displayed, click image for full size. 6501
> Get Beltran going, and he'll grumble about just about anything related to Star Trek.
> He even rails against the show's "Prime Directive," a guiding principle that prohibits Starfleet characters from interfering with the development of alien civilizations.
>"The idea of leaving any species to die in its own filth when you have the ability to help them, just because you wanna let them get through their normal evolutionary processes is bunk -- it's a bunch of fascist crap," he said.


Obviously none of us care what Robert Beltran thinks, I'm using the article as more of a framing device for a larger discussion about the Prime Directive. Personally I agree with his opinion and kind of felt vindicated when I saw this story. I never liked the Prime Directive, especially how they always try to portray it as some noble principle when it's literally just "fuck you, I got mine" enshrined in law.
Benny Russell - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 17:57:08 EST ID:F4fGXvod No.56074 Ignore Report Quick Reply
I disagree. Look at how even marginally more advanced civilisation has managed to make the middle east worse. I mean that takes some doing.

Teching up some nation may make them arrogant and belligerant. Interfering has regularly bitten us in the backside just in our own planet's history.

One on hand it is a bit "your problems not ours" to follow such a rule on the other I think there's an element of danger any time you intervene. If you force ideals on people who haven't got to the point where they're already giving them serious thought you may actually create backlash and retard things in the long run. You know, go in and help some oppressed space people, kill their space dictator and a few years later there's space chlorine being dumped on nearby planets whose entire regime has destabilised.

I don't think the prime directive is fascist either. It's selfish in some ways but saying "we judge others and interfere" is far closer to "do it our way".

If I was space president I think I'd have a prime directive by default but allow exceptions when certain criteria are met. I'm not smart enough to define these without help from a lot of other smart people but there'd be a few scenarios where butting in would be acceptable, probably more than a few, but the default would be don't interfere and then allow exceptions.
Katherine Pulaski - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 18:42:39 EST ID:rdjcGSJW No.56075 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>"The idea of leaving any species to die in its own filth when you have the ability to help them, just because you wanna let them get through their normal evolutionary processes is bunk -- it's a bunch of fascist crap," he said.

this basically justifies the Japanese invasion of China.
Mot - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 19:01:43 EST ID:/Ead/aA8 No.56076 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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Actually I think the fact that the difference between different Trek-races are so enormous would actually serve to mitigate rather than exacerbate problems. Even a superpower like the U.S doesn't have the ability to actually "fix" the middle east, only to keep things stable and defend its own interests as much as possible.

A lot of the problems caused by technological differences between cultures on Earth have been the result of tech being deliberately shared with one side but not another in order to give a third party leverage and play the natives off against each other. This is what Imperialism actually is, not just the general idea of sharing ideas and tech freely, and it's because 15th century Europe, despite being more advanced than the Americans in many ways, actually stood a lot to gain from succesfully subjugating the continent. This isn't a problem in the Federation, no single planet could ever be so dangerous in a pre-warp state that they couldn't completely obliterate it in an afternoon if they really, really, really needed to and, unless the planet has immortality juice or whatever, no single planet could actually have a resource that the Federation desperately needed and couldn't get anywhere else. They would basically be doing them a favour by saying Hello at all.

I like the idea of making non-interference a general principle but allowing exceptions but it could be impractical. Let's say, whenever they become aware of a crisis on a planet, the federation council meet up and make a decision about whether or not that situation is worth intervening in and making the primitives there aware of the larger interstellar community. Obviously for a comet heading right for the planet, which could be predicted many decades in advance, they have time for all the red tape. But if its something like a 100% terminal plague, which could spring up relatively unexpectedly on a planet they weren't keeping a really close eye on, you'd have to allow captains of starships at least a little bit of leeway in making the judgement themselves (even if you automatically court-martialled them later like they do when a starship is lost even if there is no suggestion the captain did wrong). Eventually it gets to the point where the idea is simply too complicated and you might as well just abandon it and do whatever whoever is there at the time feels is right.

Would this commitee who decide when to intervene and when not to intervene have stopped the holocaust? Of course, many people might say. But imagine Chief O'Brien organizing a site-to-site transport to whisk 6 million people out of concentration camps and across the Atlantic to safety in the 1940s. When Picard beamed down to explain how the admirals had authorized him to act in prevention of genocide you'd still have a hell of a lot of people from all over the world asking for more help from these all-powerful aliens. Can Picard simply fuck off at that point saying his superiors have decided that the rest World War 2 is a simple territorial dispute not worthy of interference even though he can totally end the war with a single volley of photon torpedoes?

Surely it would be easier to just beam down to Hitler's office on Kristallnacht and say "Look motherfucker, you are part of a larger community of many species, we will help you build schools and hospitals if you want but you have to stop killing innocent people" thus averting the holocaust and World War 2 altogether?
Weyoun 5 - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 19:03:37 EST ID:siczhJsP No.56077 Ignore Report Quick Reply
So it's okay to make yourselves gods to people just so you can distract them while you extract resources from their planet?
Actually now that I type that out, it's not a big deal. If they're not advanced, they're succeptible to stuff like that anyways. I think that as long as you don't hurt them it should be fine.
Mestral - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 19:13:25 EST ID:lBc/oXJU No.56078 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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We should bear in mind that Beltran was exposed to Voyager's version of the Prime Directive, which was a rigid, ridiculous bastardization of it.

I'd also like to hear him explain how deciding to leave someone else alone to solve their own problems constitutes fascism.

Weyoun 5 - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 19:19:28 EST ID:siczhJsP No.56079 Ignore Report Quick Reply
lol that picture, and yeah I was also thinking that. that's not fascist at all, in fact, isn't the federation basically the polar opposite of fascism?
Mot - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 19:19:37 EST ID:/Ead/aA8 No.56080 Ignore Report Quick Reply
Help is only help when it is sought voluntarily and offered without strings. The Japanese invasion China is not that.
Mot - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 19:25:24 EST ID:/Ead/aA8 No.56081 Ignore Report Quick Reply
There is an episode of TNG where we meet Worf's human brother (played by Paulie from Goodfellas) and they all stand around on the bridge and watch an entire planet die (as far as they know) and basically jerk each other off and pat each other on the back for being brave enough to sit back and do nothing.
Mestral - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 19:37:15 EST ID:lBc/oXJU No.56082 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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> If you force ideals on people who haven't got to the point where they're already giving them serious thought you may actually create backlash and retard things in the long run. You know, go in and help some oppressed space people, kill their space dictator and a few years later there's space chlorine being dumped on nearby planets whose entire regime has destabilised.

That depends on the issue you're forcing, and the circumstances. The Prime Directive was intended to address exposing civilizations to technologies that are beyond what they presently possess. Every possible outcome supposedly has that at its root. The current clusterfuck in the middle east didn't result from trying to 'force' democracy over there. It resulted from the removal of Hussein's cruel regime that kept the insurgents under control. While those two actions are dovetailed they are not identical. Introducing democracy with Hussein still in power was a possibility, although not a likely one. A typical Iraqi civilian in 2003 was probably thrilled at the thought of 1) no Saddam and 2) getting to vote on shit. It was the political and religious cunts with the guns who jumped in and wrecked it. The Coalition of the Willing totally failed to deal with that challenge (not that they could have).

On the other side of the coin, take the progression of gay marriage in the US. A decade ago a majority didn't approve of it. But victory after victory in court that 'forced' it on people who haven't got to the point where they're already giving it serious thought hasn't hurt anyone. Rather it has improved the quality of life for thousands of people and for the people (friends, famliy) who love them. An imposed societal revolution where casualties are regrettable outliers.
Lore - Wed, 07 Sep 2016 19:38:38 EST ID:oUER1G+d No.56083 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>You've got human beings working there with you. And everybody is striving to make this the best they possibly can. That was always much more interesting to me. And that changes you as a human being. More so than any Chakotay episode.
Guinan - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 04:17:24 EST ID:sehZ/Igr No.56088 Ignore Report Quick Reply
He really did get fucked hard

And his rant just shows us why Enterprise should have had a "This is Why We Prime Directive" episode where the best intentions end up accidentally killing billions, but instead they chickened out.
Chairman Koval - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 04:33:55 EST ID:5aCbAqEw No.56092 Ignore Report Quick Reply
That was the whole first season though. Archer get into all kinds of shit and just fucks every thing up for every one.
Dr. Telek R'Mor - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 10:08:57 EST ID:rdjcGSJW No.56095 Ignore Report Quick Reply

dude they killed everyone on a planet because their plasma ducts were fucking open.

did you even watch ENT?
Commander Tomalak - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 12:11:42 EST ID:5uU+DoWU No.56096 Ignore Report Quick Reply
Well, ENT was filmed well after VOY which gave the writers ample opportunity to come up with scenarios to justify the concept after the fact in the prequel.

Wasn't the prime directive mainly invented as a political statement reflecting the stance of Hollywood regarding the Vietnam War?
Guinan - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 13:10:48 EST ID:S7yJyLHl No.56100 Ignore Report Quick Reply

Sure the crew of the NX fucked up plenty, but there were no good examples of why you don't dick around with less advanced civilizations

The one where they kill everyone on that retarded planet was all because the planet 2as flammable as all fuck, basically if someone lit up the bong on the surface the same thing would have probably happened

There is the one where Phlox loses his cool and Archer keeps going on about "Well maybe someday there will be a DIRECTIVE whose PRIME purpose will be to let people do they own thang." That episode is lazy as fuck and basically follows the prime directive without telling the viewer why it's a good idea to do so.. and then they make Phlox basically flip his shit in anguish over it. What the fuck.
Thot Pran - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 14:41:57 EST ID:J6cd56IG No.56101 Ignore Report Quick Reply
what about that time the guy taught that thing to read and think and then it killed itself
Private W Woods - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 14:48:26 EST ID:GC4kAJtt No.56102 Ignore Report Quick Reply
I think if you define them right you wouldn't need a council vote for some exceptions. You'd probably need some evidence and agreement from several senior officers or something though. Means the decision takes hours not months. I hadn't considered the details of such a policy of exceptions but this is precisely why I'd need to consult with people, so the holes in it can be picked apart until it's really is the least awful solution.

Beaming down to Hitler and making him stop his shit might work. It might not, you'd have to ensure that intervention is properly thought out. You'd have to make sure you can force him to accept your terms without reneging once he has his super tech and using it to eliminate dissidents and scapegoats even faster.

I think things would rapidly spiraly and you'd be forced to being committed for a long time and that's something even the mediocre ENT addresses pretty well. If you intervene you have to see the uplift through and make sure it takes. One of the central premises of star trek is that humanity suffered for a long time before it finally said "this can't go on" that without nuking ourselves twice over we wouldn't have changed. If that premise were to hold true then that in itself is a strong argument for the prime directive. If we'd not gone through that sort of war would we have learned war sucks so hard?

I have to admit I don't like the idea of the butterfly effect and unforseen consequences, ie stop a war make things worse in the long run, because all actions can play out like that.In the end the intentions and care with which they are applied is important. If you're only marginally more advanced and subject to your own very human ambition and agendas it's a lot more likely to go wrong than if you're beyond a lot of that shit and make very controlled carefully planned intervention. And as I said, planned as in pre written multi contingency well simulated, thought through, tested to destruction and adjusted for experience planning that lends to action quickly not committes sitting around for months planning.

I think the prime directive makes sense in the star trek universe. In reality it still makes a good default as long as there's exceptions applied in a sensible fashion.

Fair argument. I think that in the case of federation adoption of it's tech does require a change to the way of life or else it's going to have consequences you cannot forsee easily.
Private W Woods - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 15:21:03 EST ID:GC4kAJtt No.56104 Ignore Report Quick Reply
I then thought about this more.

The reason Id support a prime directive as a default is because most of the time we will fuck it up.

The Iraq argument is actually a good example of this. On paper it was removing a dictator I get it. But lets be square no one believed that. Blair didn't when he manufactured WMD evidence, Bush didn't, no one did except a few Americans. I was fucking 17 and I knew it could be a lot worse than Saddam, that it was about oil, that the evidence was fake and we rushed the oil and destabilised the region. We killed half a million civilians and lost a lot of soldiers, people who on the whole genuinely wanted to make the world a better place and it made things worse. We let our own agendas, our human flaws, our greed, our hubris get the better of us. It just took a few shady people to fuck it up too.

The more i think about it I say the more we butt the fuck out unless we are sure and impartial. Let them all fucking die if it stops us raising a load of flareterprise worshippers who will probably later seek their god in the sky and burn the whole galaxy. Let the volcano go off.

more facetiouslyJust imagine. If aliens had saved us in the past. We gave the universe JJ Abrahms. Should have butted out guys. Should have butted out.
Commander Morag - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 15:58:05 EST ID:DMbI2BD1 No.56105 Ignore Report Quick Reply
Those with savior complex will never comprehend non-interference principle.
Mobara - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 16:46:16 EST ID:+5hgZe3l No.56107 Ignore Report Quick Reply
It's so ironic that it would be Beltran going on about this because really what happened to Native Americans is the #1 prime example of why the Prime Directive is absolutely essential and also why the idea is even in Star Trek at all.

You have to remember that from the perspective of the Europeans, they were doing what they thought was best with exactly the same kinds of intentions the UFP would have. Here are a bunch of people who don't really know what the world is about; lets go out among them and teach them the truth about the universe, and along the way we will improve their lives based on all the wonders we have, and also we'll make sure they aren't dangerous to us. No matter how good your intentions are, no matter how much what you think is true and good right now is the best it can be, it destroys anything that's different. Christianity and guns and horses and capitalism destroy a society just as much as IDIC and replicators and shuttles and Federation philosophy.
The Prime Directive doesn't just protect weaker civilizations from being over-written into clones of you, if helps the UFP, because it waits for them to be strong enough to add to your diversity and make you stronger. Without it you basically become the borg; the civilizations you encounter are never strong enough to add to your uniqueness, they just become flooded with the statistical mean of what you are now; with the Federation philosophy the federation always grows stronger because each unique voice is able to stand on its own.
It's like the episode where the Enterprise has to save the genetically engineered society from the stellar core fragment. They interfered, and even doing the very best they could, that disruption destroyed their society. When the Europeans came to North America, that was the death of native society as it was, no matter what they did. So you can either save everyone's lives by destroying everyone's culture, or you can accept that some will die but also some will survive as themselves, and so 'the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.'
Pavel Chekov - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 17:22:24 EST ID:d+G5Qjt2 No.56113 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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>You have to remember that from the perspective of the Europeans, they were doing what they thought was best with exactly the same kinds of intentions the UFP would have.

Um, no. Not at all. The natives were an inconvenience and an obstacle to the various European nations who were busy trying to colonize and expand their holdings in the New World. The natives' only value to the Europeans were as guides, soldiers and cultural curiousities and those are merits given to individuals. The Native American 'nations' were manipulated and targeted for deconstruction and elimination.

It has also been said, correctly I think, that the Native Americans could have thrown the Europeans the fuck out if the various tribes had stopped fighting with one another and consolidated their forces behind leaders like Tecumseh. But they didn't do that and they got roflstomped.

>if helps the UFP, because it waits for them to be strong enough to add to your diversity and make you stronger. Without it you basically become the borg; the civilizations you encounter are never strong enough to add to your uniqueness, they just become flooded with the statistical mean of what you are now

Japan went from a reclusive, withdrawn literal island to a manufacturing and technological giant in just 35 years thanks to Western technology, culture and markets. Now it's 60 years later and while they've embraced some foreign culture and ideals, on the whole they don't give a flying fuck about the West. Japan stayed Japanese.

A community doesn't suddenly abandon its own heritage because it has access to smartphones and The Pirate Bay. If you take out the technology Canadians still fundamentally talk, behave and go about their daily lives the same way they have since after the War of 1812, whose legacy left a very deep cultural scar north of the border.

The purpose of technology is to solve problems. Cars solve the problem of how to get to work quickly. Gasoline solves the problem of how to move the car. Seatbelts solve the problem of getting thrown out of the windshield when your wife drives into a tree. Handing a community a set of tools they didn't have before does not automatically earmark them for self-destruction. It also doesn't render them weaker culturally. I think this conversation is polluted by the unspoken agreement that any less-developed civilization is assumed to have the cultural durability of warm butter. That is a mistake.
Mobara - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 18:37:41 EST ID:+5hgZe3l No.56114 Ignore Report Quick Reply
The leaders knew what they were doing, but the average rank-and-file European colonist believed they were civilizing savage people and helping them. The Christian missionaries in particular didn't see colonization as an attempt at subjugation, they were merely helping these backward people see the light of the lord. And no amount of native resistance would have kept out colonization forever. And even if they did, they would've maintained independence using guns and riding on horseback and ultimately with planes and tanks -- they would have been fundamentally changed from how they would've otherwise developed without contact.
Japan became a mirror of the US, and so did well by US standards, but it lost a lot of Japanese characteristics; this tension, between wanting to be western to compete and wanting to maintain a Japanese character goes all the way back to the Meiji period and was by no means seen as an unambiguous good. To say they don't give a flying fuck about the west is ignorant of Japanese culture; they have a fetishistic level of obsession about the west, and the west's impact on their culture.
Technology *isn't* this unambiguous good. It comes with pros and cons, and it destroys whatever existed before in whatever vacuum of functionality it fills. You don't need to get to work quickly if you don't have cars, and thus you have a society based more on leisure and community. Saying that 'well it's better to have the option that not' is blind, because as soon as you create the option, you destroy all the possibilities that depended on there not being that option. It imposes a view of the proper course of development of society that forces it to become similar to the view your society took. The Prime Directive at least gives cultures a window of opportunity to try and find their own way.
B'Etor - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 20:12:49 EST ID:2CjFaDB+ No.56118 Ignore Report Quick Reply
Beltran doesn't seem to realize that the Prime Directive is a framing device. It's a guideline, not a hard law. I can see that confusion, because he was on VOY, and VOY handled the PD like utter crap.

The point of the PD is NOT "leaving any species to die in its own filth". This is even directly pointed out in a TOS episode. The point of the PD is made quite clear in all the good Trek: It's a guideline about limiting interaction with developing species in order to not fuck up their development in a way that is detrimental to them. The entire fucking point of the PD is the exact opposite of what Beltran is claiming. The two ways in which the PD crops up the most are centered around the discussion of whether the PD applies or not, and the question how dogmatically one should adhere to the PD. VOY is the exception, of course, where interpretation of the PD seems to differ per episode.

The intention of the PD is basically to be a pre-emptive measure against even unintentional space colonialism. TOS episode A Private Little War centers around this question, crazy space shaman bitches and souped up gorilla suits aside. Kirk breaks the PD, and the decision to do so is the centre of the moral question in the episode. That's the right narrative use of the PD. And TNG did an unofficial follow-up that shows how the decision worked out completely wrong. Also good use of the PD in the narrative.

There's an interesting documentary called The Tribe That Hides From Man. It's about the hunt for an uncontacted Amazonian tribe in an effort to relocate them before loggers arrive, give them diseases that kill 90% of them and murder the rest. The people that know them best are their biggest enemies. They win every engagement, because they're already in contact with Westerners, and buy guns from them. The PD is aimed at preventing all of that, on a planetary scale. And it has a poignant lesson on why the PD is needed: "You can not understand the Indian if you do not understand the killing [...] In the jungle, only the killer had the right to not be killed". If you just jump in without understanding that stuff, you're liable to do damage even when you're helping. And indeed, the documentary mentions another expidition of Ensign Rickies that got their asses slaughtered by Indians because they slacked off in their security. And in Star Trek context, that failed expedition could very well lead to something like warp drive or phasers falling into the wrong hands.
B'Etor - Thu, 08 Sep 2016 20:16:04 EST ID:2CjFaDB+ No.56119 Ignore Report Quick Reply
That's a load of bollocksy assumptions about the intentions of people you don't know two shits about.
Guinan - Fri, 09 Sep 2016 07:24:19 EST ID:10aECdiY No.56137 Ignore Report Quick Reply
I mean one suicide doesn't exactly justify the Prime Directive and make it the center of all things Federation. We should have seen Archer paving a genocidal path to hell littered with the corpses of a few billion innocents because he chose to get involved in some other species bullshit. We should have been introduced to a child character and had them killed in a disturbing way, providing a more human link to whatever tragedy Archer exacerbated by trying to help. Let's say he tries to interfere in a World War, or prevents a plague that cripples a strong nation in a position of power. Or even something like preventing a natural disaster by giving technology to a primitive race who then misuses it for destruction. THAT would have really made you think. That would have had an emotional impact as well. That's the makings of potentially good trek.

Instead we get guy kills himself because edumacations.
Guinan - Fri, 09 Sep 2016 08:40:14 EST ID:10aECdiY No.56140 Ignore Report Quick Reply
But he's pretty much spot on tho
Guinan - Fri, 09 Sep 2016 08:47:46 EST ID:10aECdiY No.56141 Ignore Report Quick Reply
This is a pretty damn good writeup of the Prime Directive
Gul Macet - Fri, 09 Sep 2016 10:32:59 EST ID:rdjcGSJW No.56142 Ignore Report Quick Reply

this is almost all bullshit.
Rebi - Sat, 10 Sep 2016 15:31:06 EST ID:wiVZuv7W No.56168 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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Hey at least we know how long it takes Film Theorists to shit out a video now.
Darien Wallace - Sat, 10 Sep 2016 16:56:56 EST ID:+5hgZe3l No.56170 Ignore Report Quick Reply
Ironic, because the very thing that invalidates this guy's arguments and proves how unlike other conquerors and their philosophies the Federation is is....*drumroll* the Prime Directive! Funny that....
Senator Tal'aura - Mon, 19 Dec 2016 17:40:48 EST ID:wAIfKHH4 No.57397 Ignore Report Quick Reply
Isnt the Prime Directive in place so that less technological and socially developed races dont get their hands on technologies like nuclear weapons and blow themselves to smithereens with fully understanding the power behind them?

Didnt the Vulcans first create the Prime Directive as a way of not culturally polluting lesser races and making sure they lesser races endanger themselves with technology they couldn't understand?

Hell the Klingons are proof of the Prime Directive being needed as a capturing an invading races technology lead to a interstellar space viking empire controlling vast swaths of space and hundreds of years of war

Surely being a Native American where a good chunk of the population died due to contracting diseases from Europeans and being forced out of their homelands proves his point wrong
Neelix - Mon, 19 Dec 2016 18:36:43 EST ID:5uU+DoWU No.57400 Ignore Report Quick Reply
The Federation is not real, nor does it really exists beyond the intent of the authors. So the federation really is an utopian society _just_ because it's their authors intent.
Porthos - Mon, 19 Dec 2016 19:31:04 EST ID:DAKVMOCb No.57402 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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>not interventionist as fuck
Phlox - Mon, 19 Dec 2016 23:01:58 EST ID:b2kjICL7 No.57403 Ignore Report Quick Reply
The aliens are giving us objective views of their place through the natural forces that reflect in the universe. They will meet us in the between of our places because it takes those characteristics to survive into the beyond, and that's on yourselves over many generations not theirs. Karma of testing a face that doesn't hold up to its own yet.

Now onto these ship cloaking devices, they would improve on the prime directive, and I doubt without Kes giving out wishes without cloaking they would've been Borg food.
Gantt - Tue, 20 Dec 2016 02:07:07 EST ID:tBQ5aDMD No.57405 Ignore Report Quick Reply
The prime directive is more of a differentiation between socially compatible and incompatible civilizations than it is of technology, it just happens that technological progression and societal maturity go very much hand in hand, especially when you get to mankind's current level. Observe our own social immaturity: burning shit for energy requires literally no technology other than fire ignition, and yet that's the principal threat to our continued survival on this planet.

That, and simply overexerting the human-necessary resources on our planet will very quickly lead us to the brink of extinction. Learning how to manage these simple issues in our civilization, let alone controlling the incredible power of nuclear/fusion/antimatter reactions, is a serious barrier that, if not conquered, could annihilate not only a planet but whole regions of a galaxy if we also managed to obtain FTL.

In short it would actually be unfaultingly logical for a federation type civilization to maintain a Prime Directive type stance toward pre-warp civilizations, but with active observation in concordance with the threat potential of the species.
Jannar - Tue, 20 Dec 2016 23:42:32 EST ID:kFlxnpJC No.57415 Ignore Report Quick Reply
You are kind of psychotic but you're absolutely right.

If you're going to make a claim as an expansionist alien race, you better live up to that fucking claim. The Federation can't say it's peaceful and tolerant and just wants to study science, if it's not doing that. Similarly, the Klingons are not going to claim to be warriors and then sit at home studying asteroid formations with your best and brightest.

Butttt, you gotta prove you're up to it first. Most aliens we see are confined to a planet or a system, maybe sometimes a handful of systems. So they have to be able to check your spacefaring resume in a sense.

I also agree from a certain point of view that cloaking devices would be good for doing research and such, but I think Federation hologram and probe technology fills that void pretty fine (except when it's failing for plot reasons of course). Also, another part of the Federation's good guy credo is sticking to their word, so of course they're not going to openly develop cloaking technology, even for peaceful purposes, if they're bound to a treaty saying they won't.
Leeta - Wed, 21 Dec 2016 00:06:52 EST ID:+5hgZe3l No.57416 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>so of course they're not going to openly develop cloaking technology, even for peaceful purposes, if they're bound to a treaty saying they won't
Except of course that that's exactly what they did ("The Pegasus.") Or that when they were later able to acquire cloaking technology for the Defiant, they openly acknowledged that their use of it was in violation of their agreement.

See the thing about the Federation is that it's intrinsically expansionistic, it's just that, as Twain remarked to Troi, 'like all conquerors [they] imagine their intentions to be noble.' It's written in their charter, the objective of the Federation/Starfleet is seeking out new life/species/planets, all ultimately with the idea of bringing them into the Federation fold. Exploration and colonialism are unable to be separated from each other. There is even explicit hand-wringing about this by Quark in DS9; how the cloying, insidious sweetness of the UFP is like root beer and much more dangerous than the blatant imperialism of the Dominion.

Under this idea, the Prime Directive isn't fascist, but rather the keystone of the excuse the UFP tells itself to convince *itself* it isn't fascist. (Oh, we only totally fuck around and homogenize a culture after there's grass on the field/they can go at a certain speed. That's unmitigated proof that they have the ability to judge the consequences of hooking up with our interstellar groupthink and consent. I mean, just look at what their planet is wearing? They're asking for it.)

Just taking some piss out on the PD. In reality I know that the Fed is the only hope for a glorious and righteous galaxy, death to all infidels, etc.
Jannar - Wed, 21 Dec 2016 01:13:45 EST ID:kFlxnpJC No.57418 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>Except of course that that's exactly what they did ("The Pegasus.")
You will note that I said OPENLY. Pegasus was a very secret and illegal thing, that upon discovery, Picard immediately owned up to it to the Romulans when he found out the truth.

DS9 did acknowledge their violation of the agreement with the Romulans, however they didn't start using it in violation until there was war. Plus DS9 is known as the Trek that bends the rules, so yeah that's a pass from my point of a general usage ban on cloaking even though it is logical to employ cloaking technology to protect the prime directive (as was the original reply I made)

Quark and Garak didn't say the Federation's game was more dangerous than the Dominion you doofus. The Dominion literally sends clone soldiers with guns to force you to comply. The Federation simply has rules for membership, if you meet those rules then you can join, if not, they'll still have cordial relations with you because that's how they both prosper.

THEIR point was that the Federation culture is, I don't want to say better, but has some redeeming qualities related to their indigenous cultures, as they're both better people for having embraced some Federation ideals in opposition to their cultural norms. They're free to be themselves, rather than conforming to their own society.

Quark starts that scene off by giving away free booze, and while he explains it away, it's also not very Ferengi-like of him. Then he talks explicitly about how he is out in the abyss following his heart rather than following his drive-for-money. Even Garak's initial "ew no" reaction is soon overcome by a curiosity for something new. And then at the end, they ask if the Federation can save them and they say "I hope so." So yeah, you're just making up bullshit for thinking that scene has ANYTHING to do with those people saying the Federation is more dangerous than the Dominion.
Hikaru Sulu - Wed, 21 Dec 2016 09:48:47 EST ID:eHz4QlxW No.57422 Ignore Report Quick Reply

>Those with savior complex will never comprehend non-interference principle.

Reposting this because this.
Leeta - Wed, 21 Dec 2016 18:32:42 EST ID:+5hgZe3l No.57436 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>>he didn't say the Federation's game was more dangerous
Dangerous was perhaps a poor choice of words. I mean danger to his way of life, rather than physical danger. He clearly expresses that they are more insidious and covert about the effects of their influence, and multiple times laments how Federation values are 'the end of Ferengi civilization!' With the Dominion you know what you're dealing with; they want to conquer you and change how you live. With the Federation, they say they don't want to change you, but they ultimately do, because 'they're so cloying and sweet' and 'if you drink enough, you begin to like it.'

They of course hope the Federation wins, because they know the Dominion is worse in the long run and neither Ferenginar or Cardassia can stand up to them alone. The direct historical parallel they are going for is like being in occupied France. Of course you know the Nazi's are bad and your only hope is if the US comes and stops them...but in the end, the Americans end up influencing and changing your way of life as much as the Nazi's would have, just in more subtle, insidious ways.

Look at how, by the end of DS9, barely a decade after their first contact with the Federation, Ferengi has accepted females into the workforce and the Nagus is preparing a package of social reforms. Quark was right about the Federation being the end of Ferengi civilization, and that's a kind of imperialism and colonization just like what the Dominion does is, even if it's with a kinder end result.
Commander Tebok - Wed, 21 Dec 2016 21:33:08 EST ID:G+Q9PqR6 No.57446 Ignore Report Quick Reply
For Garak Insidious doesn't carry the same connotation. He RESPECTS insidious, he's not in fear of it. You see those characters develop though. You see them choosing to change themselves because they see the success of the way of life of the Federation. What they thought was a bunch of spacefaring pussies and easy marks, they find out are way cooler than that and actually get a lot of shit about this interstellar civilization thing right.

The UFP is not engaged in changing worlds, their example of a multicultural, open minded, prosperous, and resourceful culture leads worlds to change themselves. That's entirely different than the Dominion's kind of soft empire where they give autonomy but tie your nuts in a vice grip.

Also I'd say France shucked off any kind of US cultural imperialism pretty fucking well.
DaiMon Bok - Thu, 22 Dec 2016 19:56:06 EST ID:Mo/cULC+ No.57458 Ignore Report Quick Reply
The Prime Directive is an overreaction to the very real risk of trying to rule "inferior" planets and decide what's best for them, and ultimately of becoming an empire.

The real problem is the hierarchical structure of the Federation.
Sarpek the Fearless - Fri, 23 Dec 2016 10:58:13 EST ID:5aCbAqEw No.57462 Ignore Report Quick Reply
The main deal I always thought it hammered in was that the sudden transformation granted by gifted advanced tech would ruin a species. Not just that they have to evolve with out help, but that does give time for the right mind set of society to take hold and allow safe use for say, nuke powerplants instead of world destroyer bombs.
Admiral Cartwright - Sat, 24 Dec 2016 02:42:59 EST ID:zdJLz8PT No.57466 Ignore Report Quick Reply

I like you, this is something I mull over too

I feel like there's probably an intellectual divide in 24th century society where the new liberalism is probably more anti-legalism, the belief that the UFP isn't really evolved if we're still using prisons and such to compel our idealized behavior, and the conservatives are all what we would consider socialists but they are conservative because they still believe the rule of law supersedes the individual life experience.

StarFleet is an interesting organization. Hierarchy does lead to an inherent power structure that becomes corrupted, but the chain of command does have its merits for an organization that operates in such dangerous and extreme conditions as StarFleet. I like to imagine eventually the federation evolves philosophically so that a StarFleet officer does not hold his rank out of some kind of legally conferred authority, but rather through the consensus of the people under their "command" being wise enough to admit that they should be willing to question their own judgment and defer to expertise in times of immediate crisis.
I suppose one could make the argument that functionally that's no different from a cult, but just a cult where people actually know what they're talking about and working towards a common good instead of wearing magic underwear and fleecing money.
Lt. Diana Giddings - Mon, 26 Dec 2016 23:28:15 EST ID:NuytcwMz No.57485 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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"The Way to Eden" is probably the best example we get in series of this tension between what you accurately call 'anti-legalism' and the Fed's utopian post-socialism.

>"There are many who are uncomfortable with what we have created. It is almost a biological rebellion – a profound revulsion against the planned communities, the programming, the sterilized, artfully balanced atmospheres."

It would seem that the writers think that societies never evolve beyond this point (more likely we at our current state of development can't imagine what it would be like) as even the Q have a legalistic society. I mean, why would omnipotent, immortal beings really give a fuck if you want to kill yourself?
William T Riker - Wed, 28 Dec 2016 23:28:54 EST ID:7rP0DD81 No.57509 Ignore Report Quick Reply
See, I don't agree. They're not deciding what's best for them, they're letting them decide for themselves. What do you propose they do instead? Uplift the undeveloped aliens? Just say hello and let them be?

The Federation realizes that if they intercede even minimally, they will become the CENTER of that planet's existence. The only way to prevent that is wait til they're playing on your level (or close to it as the TNG episode First Contact shows) then you can say hello cause they're going to run into you eventually.

I wish Enterprise had done something like have them land on a pre-warp planet, make what appears to be peaceful, friendly contact, but then come back the next season and find that the planet is in civil war because the governments couldn't handle the existence of aliens.

Also, the Prime Directive comes from the Vulcans right?
William T Riker - Wed, 28 Dec 2016 23:32:09 EST ID:7rP0DD81 No.57510 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>even the Q have a legalistic society.
The Q are just humans at our most highly evolved state, that's why Q wanted to fuck with Picard, he wanted to see if humans really had the potential to be the Q cause he found it so hard to believe. He almost spills the beans to Picard at the end of All Good Things... but he decides against it
Curzon Dax - Thu, 05 Jan 2017 16:58:27 EST ID:Ld/FqYVV No.57586 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>I wish Enterprise had done something like have them land on a pre-warp planet, make what appears to be peaceful, friendly contact, but then come back the next season and find that the planet is in civil war because the governments couldn't handle the existence of aliens.

That's a pretty good idea.

Also, the Prime Directive comes from the Vulcans right?
Yes, they don't interfere with pre warp civilizations, that's why they turn up in First Contact after Zefram Cochrane makes the first human warp flight.
DaiMon Nunk - Thu, 05 Jan 2017 18:18:21 EST ID:UKKS3Tki No.57588 Ignore Report Quick Reply
Well it also comes from Titpole being salty that they turned up after warp and are still involved, though in fairness to humanity a lot of this is vulcans thinking everyone else who feels emotions is as unstable and evil as emotional vulcans can be and so vulcans holding humans back "for their own good". The mirror universe shows that humans do just fine without that intervention. Until Mirror... SPOCK a FUCKING VULCAN ruins everything. Human supremacy. Terra Terra uber alles.
Seskal - Sun, 08 Jan 2017 12:21:09 EST ID:H39fqjWc No.57613 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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I suppose that could have been their intention for what Q was going to say...I think it was also a fairly brilliant intentional leaving out of it so it is left up to whatever you want to imagine.
I always kind of thought (since Q effectively really is God) that it was 'the answer' to the kind of question about existence Picard has (which he discusses in "Where Silence Has Lease" about the nature of existence being beyond both philosophy and science 'a kind of reality beyond what we perceive as reality') which of course makes Picard the philosophical 'everyman' since this is the most fundamental question around which all human intellectual development has grown (and 'that human drive to explore and grow' which Q compliments Riker on.)

So in that vein I like to think that really Q would've said something like
>>yeah all this universe shit ain't even reality I'm just fuckin w/ u m8 lol
Greskrendtregk - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 01:32:32 EST ID:EmP7pF1Y No.58238 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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He's not wrong exactly though. It's kind of sad how this went so unexplored, even though it was part of the Maquis raison d'etre - defectors from the Paradise that wasn't. They really should have been more of a threat to the Federation, it would have been another interesting sort of mirror image of the Fed that the Borg are. DS9 did a good job exploring the flaws of the Federation, but they really should have went even more into it. Voyager sadly had that whole Maquis angle nixed early-ish.
Hugh - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 02:37:14 EST ID:KikjBBjU No.58239 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>Voyager sadly had that whole Maquis angle nixed early-ish

Its funny you said DS9 should have gone more into it, because the Maquis were strictly a plot point for Voyager that DS9 and TNG had to front load.
Greskrendtregk - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 05:40:25 EST ID:EmP7pF1Y No.58240 Ignore Report Quick Reply
I'm not disagreeing with you that it was mainly a Voyager plot point, but that was only initially. Granted, it should have been a deeper part of the feel of VOY, that constant Fed-v-Maquis presence, where even when characters are very well conciliated to each other, their ideologies continue to be different. Voyager imo resolved this too soon, far too soon. Sure, there's shoutouts to it now and then (the Scorpion two parter), and when it actually gets used, it is a nice exploration of both the different views, and even sometimes a good interplay (again, the compromise gambit of Scorpion) between those ideas. But one can understand why Beltran was so frustrated. He kinda became his character, so it's interesting how he views things like the Prime Directive is fascist crap (which can be very seriously argued that it is).

It's logical though that DS9 would pick up on it. I mean, ffs, they're right next door to the DMZ, where the core of the Maquis empire is forming. They're right on the border with the bloody Cardies.
Hugh - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 13:36:35 EST ID:KikjBBjU No.58242 Ignore Report Quick Reply
Oh yeah, I agree with you. I'm just pointing out that DS9's writers didn't have plans for the Maquis compared to the Klingons and Dominion. That's why they felt shortchanged, with it culminating with them being wiped out off screen by Jem'Hadar.
Greer - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 20:04:17 EST ID:xuBcumf2 No.58243 Ignore Report Quick Reply
makes it even more stupid that VOY cut that off and only brought it up once in a while.
Arne Darvin - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 21:55:41 EST ID:hSfbtEAd No.58244 Ignore Report Quick Reply
It could have been interesting to kind of parallel the Maquis development in DS9 and VOY. Watch one become more and more hostile, and the other become more and more typical.

It's pretty sweet that the Dominion just went in and straight up wiped them out though. Good riddance I say, sentimental fools.
Turanj - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 21:58:48 EST ID:0et32BIX No.58245 Ignore Report Quick Reply
People really need to pick up a dictionary and look up the words "fascism" and "racism" sometimes.
Dr. Denara Pel - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 22:37:49 EST ID:GctQzjZV No.58247 Ignore Report Quick Reply
>fascist crap
I don't think we understand what fascist is.

It is crap though. Foreign intervention is a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't, because every other power in the galaxy is pulling it. It was just an extreme pull-back on the Truman Doctrine, and a short-sighted one at that. It doesn't factor the status of nation-states or doctrines that view ANY existence of us as a separate entity as abhorrent. It doesn't factor the consequences of non-intervention, or rather refuses to care and wants to take them as is. It takes this long-term aspiration of inspiring other species, without giving them the context or reason to act as non-interventionist. It has its purpose, to avoid responsibility for other planets via non-involvement, and while the latest batch of consequences embroiling us in connections by the Middle East could have been avoided with non-intervention, what context is there to know our inaction would have not made things worse?

The Prime Directive makes people justify via consequence in the future for its implementation, instead of its understanding of circumstances HERE and NOW. And even if portrayed in the latter, it opens the Federation to consequences of disastrous result. I mean, barring Section 31 interference that negates those consequences.
Jossen - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 23:37:19 EST ID:dV0i2NZn No.58248 Ignore Report Quick Reply

I think you dudes are overthinking this.

If you give a planet that is not ready for warp the elements of warp technology, they are likely to kill each other, neighboring peoples, and perhaps you.
Kira Meru - Sat, 11 Mar 2017 21:19:58 EST ID:PoSNoGYC No.58265 Ignore Report Quick Reply
The most important thing about the Prime Directive is its effect in diplomacy. The Federation practices non-intervention to give them the moral high ground diplomatically. Because you know the Klingons and Romulans and Cardassians and Gore aren't giving a fuck about putting the whip crack to an inferior species.

Why do you think the Klingons favor bladed weaponry? Because it wouldn't be honorable to use disruptors on lesser species in combat.
Gun Runner Sakonna - Sun, 12 Mar 2017 23:45:13 EST ID:1N2CNdZ1 No.58280 Ignore Report Quick Reply
technological uplifting isn't the only part of the Prime Directive though.
Lt. Cmdr. Dexter Remmick - Tue, 14 Mar 2017 20:04:46 EST ID:xuBcumf2 No.58303 Ignore Report Quick Reply
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>klingons be flyin around going "I am undefeated in this sector"
Hikaru Sulu - Tue, 14 Mar 2017 21:17:55 EST ID:dV0i2NZn No.58308 Ignore Report Quick Reply

>This conceptual law applies particularly to civilizations which are below a certain threshold of technological, scientific and cultural development; preventing starship crews from using their superior technology to impose their own values or ideals on them.

Commander Dolim - Tue, 14 Mar 2017 22:00:03 EST ID:6K1URstf No.58310 Ignore Report Quick Reply
It's fitting that Robert Beltran would think less of the prime directive given how Chipotle was a Maquis. More importantly, watch the intro to VOY season 2 episode 14. He explains his view a bit.
Lwaxana Troi - Sat, 18 Mar 2017 11:47:12 EST ID:xy5uBKLm No.58353 Ignore Report Quick Reply
I'd never thought about klingons love of blades, I just assumed it was to do with it being showy and dramatic as befits their culture. However what you're saying also makes perfect sense. It's one of those things which doesn't contradict or re write anything and actually further explains something so it's going in my head canon.

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