Herkimer Jitty wrote:
In a writing sense, the Federation pretty much exists to justify the existence of Starfleet, which exists solely to legitimize the Enterprise and her crew and to give their mission purpose. It's supposed to be in the background. I find that satisfying enough.
If anything the day to day stuff in the federation would be kind of boring, I mean most problems are probably dealt with already, attacks from other empires or powerful entities are less common (so you can't get drama from that) and if they do show up they have to be reasonably threatening to an area that should be well defended and as such should be rare or it get tedious and predictable, and there can't be too much strange new stuff seeing as the area would have been heavily charted and explored by now.
So, really the only things a starship could do in the place are some minor diplomatic missions, patrols against minor annoyances, and hauling crap from one starbases or planet to another or some of those other thing that really only explained why the Enterprise was in the area when the actually interesting stuff happened.