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-   -   Why is the Federation so dumb? (http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=209971)

Jared April 20 2013 06:35 AM

Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
Ok so I'm rewatching "Pegasus" from TNG and wondering why...WHY would the Federation agree to a treaty where they aren't allowed to explore the possibility and technology of cloaking? This seems like a huge mistake. At the time they knew the Romulans had it, why would they want a potential enemy to have a huge advantage and not give themselves that advantage as well? It is weird.....

Here is a Memory Alpha link to the Treaty of Algeron that set up the Neutral Zone and outlined that the Federation couldn't use cloaking devices.
http://en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/Treaty_of_Algeron

Anyone have any ideas?

Third Nacelle April 20 2013 06:51 AM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
This may sound a bit Roddenberrian of me, but I don't think even without the treaty, that cloaking technology is something the Federation would seek anyway. It's dishonest trickery, and that's not how the Federation works.

Of course there will always be elements within the Federation (Pressman & Co.) who would seek it regardless of the treaty, because that's just how those kinds of people work.

Herkimer Jitty April 20 2013 06:54 AM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
Maybe it forces the Romulans to disarm the type of weapon they used in Balance of Terror. Basically, "You give up your Starbase-killing weapons, and we won't use cloaking devices."

Bry_Sinclair April 20 2013 07:00 AM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
It must've been a means of securing peace. The Federation and the Romulans could have been building up towards war, which was only prevented by the Treaty of Algeron. The UFP gave up cloaking research, perhaps the Romulans gave up something as well.

One thing I don't understand is why no one developed the phasing side of the phasing-cloak. Something doesn't need to be invisible to be intangible.

CommishSleer April 20 2013 07:56 AM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
I agree with the original poster. I don't see thats its credible and realistic for the Federation to agree to not ever create or investigate a cloaking device.
Surely the Romulans have violated any agreements by their behaviour in several episodes in TNG. Their attempted invasion of Vulcan.
If war broke out between the Federation and Romulus would the Federation still agree to the treaty while their ships were being wiped out by cloaked Romulan ships?
I agree Spock and Kirk behaved badly in 'The Enterprise Incident' but thats the Cold War for you.

C.E. Evans April 20 2013 08:14 AM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
Quote:

Bry_Sinclair wrote: (Post 7973137)
It must've been a means of securing peace. The Federation and the Romulans could have been building up towards war, which was only prevented by the Treaty of Algeron. The UFP gave up cloaking research, perhaps the Romulans gave up something as well.

Basically this.

We don't know what the Romulans gave up, though, but apparently the Federation not pursuing cloaking technology has maintained peace (albeit at times tenuous) with the Romulans.

Timo April 20 2013 11:38 AM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
The Romulans appear to be quite willing to sign similarly hobbling treaties - they agreed not to develop polaric ion weapons ("Time and Again") and steered clear of subspace weapons, too (ST:INS). It also appears they never developed metagenic weapons, even though their know-how must have been decades or centuries ahead that of the Cardassians ("Chain of Command").

The Trek universe is full of superweapons. Just like in the real world, those are usually the most powerful and effective when not used - and thus the most cost-effective when not built in the first place.

Timo Saloniemi

not April 20 2013 12:40 PM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
Perhaps, the art of politics? Ultimately, any treaties signed have a purpose and the Federation found it in not seeking cloaking technology. A deal is sometimes what you don’t get too.

The Wormhole April 20 2013 01:28 PM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
Quote:

Third Nacelle wrote: (Post 7973113)
This may sound a bit Roddenberrian of me, but I don't think even without the treaty, that cloaking technology is something the Federation would seek anyway. It's dishonest trickery, and that's not how the Federation works.

Yeah, so the story goes, Roddenberry said the Federation shouldn't have any cloaking devices because "they're peaceful explorers and have nothing to hide."

Although, we saw in AGT that with the Romulans defeated by the Klingons the Federation were free to develop claoking technology and indeed the Enterprise had a claoking device.

Timo April 20 2013 01:34 PM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
And in "The Pegasus", we saw that even without the Romulans gone, the Federation were free to develop cloaking technology and indeed the Enterprise had a cloaking device...

They just couldn't admit to it in public. (Except that in the episode, they did, and apparently there was no ill effect.)

Timo Saloniemi

R. Star April 20 2013 02:14 PM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
The treaty was stated as "keeping the peace" and given the mindset of the Federation in that time, the same one that kept giving concessions to the Cardassians even though they were actively violating the treaty there, I think the Federation's policy then -was- appeasement.

Timo April 20 2013 02:19 PM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
...And seemed to be working pretty well.

Timo Saloniemi

The Librarian April 20 2013 04:16 PM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
Quote:

R. Star wrote: (Post 7973776)
The treaty was stated as "keeping the peace" and given the mindset of the Federation in that time, the same one that kept giving concessions to the Cardassians even though they were actively violating the treaty there, I think the Federation's policy then -was- appeasement.

I know, I hate all that appeasement of the Cardassians, with those treaties where both sides gave up stuff that they claimed. Fifty-Four Forty or Fight!

R. Star April 20 2013 04:19 PM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
Quote:

The Librarian wrote: (Post 7974118)
Quote:

R. Star wrote: (Post 7973776)
The treaty was stated as "keeping the peace" and given the mindset of the Federation in that time, the same one that kept giving concessions to the Cardassians even though they were actively violating the treaty there, I think the Federation's policy then -was- appeasement.

I know, I hate all that appeasement of the Cardassians, with those treaties where both sides gave up stuff that they claimed. Fifty-Four Forty or Fight!

Yeah... so what if they don't honor it, keep plotting to sieze disputed systems like Minos Korva and actively terrorize your colonists to the point where they start fighting to survive. Join with our Cardassian neighbors to stomp the foot of those colonist's faces for daring to not quietly be oppressed!

At least they won't do anything like join a totalitarian alliance and instigate the largest war in Federation history!

sonak April 20 2013 04:28 PM

Re: Why is the Federation so dumb?
 
it's hard to say without knowing what the Romulans gave up, and knowing how the war was going. If the UFP was losing or it was basically a stalemate, the treaty might have seemed like a good idea.


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