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Old March 16 2011, 07:53 AM   #433
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Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

Rush Limborg wrote: View Post
rfmcdpei wrote: View Post
Rush Limborg wrote: View Post
I don't...but to be honest, the comics have a lot of things that conflict with TrekLit, so I wouldn't really consult them unless the events therein are referred to in said books.
The point is that the sort of willing brinksmanship that Kirk engaged in, however it may have ended well in the short term, ran longer-term risks of precipitating disaster thanks to his particular lack of care and scruples. How much more so Section 31, especially when acting beyond Federation borders against the interests of less scrupulous powers?
I see. On that same note, Peter David's short story in the "Dominion War" anthology establishes that Sisko's actions in "In The Pale Moonlight" eventually led to another war with the Federation.

Yes, there are consequences to actions--many of them immense. That does not mean that those actions were not the best ones to engage in at the time.
But that isn't an argument in defense of Section 31's chosen methods, and not only because Sisko's initiative took place outside of Section 31. It's arguably a point in my favour: policies undertaken by individuals and bureaucracies firmly under central control and supervision are more legitimate, and arguably less likely to go haywire, than policies enacted by people who exist outside of any control.

Rush Limborg wrote: View Post
So...she gave up, rather than take action to reform her own state? Somehow, that doesn't strike me as like the Donatra we know.

All I'm saying is that I find it so hard to believe that her stated motives were legit. Perhaps I'm being "paranoid" (I would say: rationally suspicious)...but I can't help but wonder if there was something else going on--something that would bring her to that point of rock-bottom desperation.
Her thinking processes as described in Rough Beasts of Empire seem sufficiently complete as to need no other explanation, but, hmm. What do you suggest?

Rush Limborg wrote: View Post
Oh, I know--not acceptable by the general populace. However...apparently, a sufficent portion of the Amiralty (including Cartwright) found it all acceptable--and their support supplied a sanction to their activities.
A sanction that Federation citizens knew about?

One key thing in this discussion is that Starfleet, Leyton's abortive conspiracy aside, is an agency branch of the Federation government subordinate to the civilian branch, i.e. the democratic institutions under the control of the Federation citizenry. The willingness of some people in Starfleet--only some people, note--to let Section 31 do its business exists in the context of the Federation citizenry's ignorance of Section 31's existence and its activities. What happens when Federation citizens do learn of this?

Rush Limborg wrote: View Post
Not really. But that argument rests on the assumption that 31 neccessarily wants the people's approval.
It does: Once its existence is revealed to the general population of the Federation, as we know happens, Section 31's future chances for survival depend on popular attitudes, on the willingness of Federation citizens to let it grow back.

Will Section 31 find "ways" to deal with all the people--journalists, Federation councillors, photobloggers who find remarkable things, ordinary concerned people, et cetera--who will not be at all happy with the revival of the agency they despised for its violations of basic Federation principles and see as a real threat to their freedoms and their good name?

Earlier in this thread, you suggested that the prominence of ex-KGB people in 2011 era Russia constituted a data point in favour of your thesis of the likelihood of Section 31's revival to its former point. It doesn't: 2011 Russia is so different from 1981's RSFSR that the difference is funny. The position that the post-KGB agency does have, however, depends entirely on the willingness of many Russians--and the implicit consent of most--to accept that the former Soviet police-state bureaucracy wasn't irredeemable, and that its alumni shouldn't be hindered in their careers.

Is the Federation's citizenry so little attached to democratic values?

[QUOTE=Rush Limborg;4813113]
rfmcdpei wrote: View Post
Rush Limborg wrote: View Post
I'm aware of that. Frankly, it's roughly akin to Sloan's point in the end of "Inquistion", concerning Bashir lying in order to get into Starfleet Medical.

Can you unpack your definition of how it's different?
I don't understand....
Of how it's the same, sorry.
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