RSS iconTwitter iconFacebook icon

The Trek BBS title image

The Trek BBS statistics

Threads: 138,185
Posts: 5,345,236
Members: 24,603
Currently online: 711
Newest member: localyokel

TrekToday headlines

Klingon Beer Arrives In The US
By: T'Bonz on Jul 22

Star Trek: Prelude To Axanar
By: T'Bonz on Jul 22

Abrams Announces Star Wars: Force For Change Sweepstakes
By: T'Bonz on Jul 22

New Funko Trek Figure
By: T'Bonz on Jul 21

Saldana As A Role Model
By: T'Bonz on Jul 21

San Diego Comic-Con Trek Fan Guide
By: T'Bonz on Jul 21

Cumberbatch As Turing
By: T'Bonz on Jul 21

Retro Review: In the Pale Moonlight
By: Michelle on Jul 19

Trek Beach Towel
By: T'Bonz on Jul 18

Two New Starships Collection Releases
By: T'Bonz on Jul 17


Welcome! The Trek BBS is the number one place to chat about Star Trek with like-minded fans. Please login to see our full range of forums as well as the ability to send and receive private messages, track your favourite topics and of course join in the discussions.

If you are a new visitor, join us for free. If you are an existing member please login below. Note: for members who joined under our old messageboard system, please login with your display name not your login name.


Go Back   The Trek BBS > Welcome to the Trek BBS! > General Trek Discussion

General Trek Discussion Trek TV and cinema subjects not related to any specific series or movie.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old January 14 2012, 06:05 PM   #1
The Overlord
Captain
 
Ferengi Corporations

Since the Ferengi alliance is supposed to be an ultra capitalist society, why didn't we see more of Ferengi corporations? In the age of colonialism many private companies went on colonial ventures. India was originally conquered by the "East India Company", it wasn't until later that the British crown assumed control over India.

It make sense that a lot of the Ferengi starships the Federation would meet would be under the command of a corporation, rather the Ferengi government. I think seeing more of privately owned Ferengi starships would have made them more of an interesting villain (when they were supposed to be villains) and different from other civilizations. You could have Ferengi Corporations trade with and end up colonizing less developed civilizations.
The Overlord is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 14 2012, 06:19 PM   #2
Mr. Laser Beam
Fleet Admiral
 
Mr. Laser Beam's Avatar
 
Location: The visitor's bullpen
View Mr. Laser Beam's Twitter Profile
Re: Ferengi Corporations

Slug-O-Cola?
__________________
In labor news: Longshoremen walked off the piers today. Rescue operations are continuing.
Mr. Laser Beam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old January 14 2012, 06:20 PM   #3
horatio83
Commodore
 
Re: Ferengi Corporations

Quark is a businessman and he has employees. The basic idea has been that Ferengi are a bunch of privateers, not people who are docile enough to work in gigantic bureaucratic structures.
The part of the Ferengi government we see, the Grand Nagus, is as capitalist as it gets. Note that colonizing has often been done by governments. Take a look at what the Chinese are currently doing in Africa, that's only possible with a strong autocratic government (which is basically the same as a large corporation). Hard to picture Ferengi being engaged in such activity.
__________________
The illegal we do immediately; the unconstitutional takes a little longer. - former US Secretary of State and unconvicted war criminal Henry Kissinger
horatio83 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 14 2012, 06:45 PM   #4
Sandoval
Fleet Captain
 
Sandoval's Avatar
 
Re: Ferengi Corporations

Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
Slug-O-Cola?
#the slimiest cola in the galaxy...#
__________________
Ⓢ Ⓐ Ⓝ Ⓓ Ⓞ Ⓥ Ⓐ Ⓛ
Sandoval is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 14 2012, 08:39 PM   #5
The Overlord
Captain
 
Re: Ferengi Corporations

horatio83 wrote: View Post
Quark is a businessman and he has employees. The basic idea has been that Ferengi are a bunch of privateers, not people who are docile enough to work in gigantic bureaucratic structures.
The part of the Ferengi government we see, the Grand Nagus, is as capitalist as it gets. Note that colonizing has often been done by governments. Take a look at what the Chinese are currently doing in Africa, that's only possible with a strong autocratic government (which is basically the same as a large corporation). Hard to picture Ferengi being engaged in such activity.
Quark's business is a sole proprietorship, not a corporation.

Also I think if the Ferengi were supposed to be a commentary about capitalism run amok (specifically American capitalism) the Ferengi should have had corporations. In their first appearance they seemed like a generic warrior culture, rather then business men.

Also I don't think that just because Ferengi society is about acquiring profit, that doesn't mean every Ferengi is suited to be business leaders, its the reason why Quark ran the bar, while Rom was just his subordinate, because Quark had a more forceful personality and better business skills, despite the fact Rom had better technical skills then Quark. I do think some Ferengi would be docile enough to work in a corporation rather then everyone in their society trying to be an entrepreneur.

I think one of the problems Ferengi as villains is they had no patience and a desire for instant gratification, almost none of them seemed like more sinister, subtle long term planners. So yeah written like that, they can't create corporations, but they also don't work as effective villains either. Lex Luthor is driven by greed and ego, but he comes off as a rather subtle, long term schemer.
The Overlord is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 14 2012, 11:32 PM   #6
Rojixus
Commander
 
Rojixus's Avatar
 
Location: the Dreadfort
Re: Ferengi Corporations

I always thought of the Ferengi Alliance as one big corporation.
__________________
First immortality, then the bitches.
Rojixus is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 14 2012, 11:48 PM   #7
horatio83
Commodore
 
Re: Ferengi Corporations

The Overlord wrote: View Post
horatio83 wrote: View Post
Quark is a businessman and he has employees. The basic idea has been that Ferengi are a bunch of privateers, not people who are docile enough to work in gigantic bureaucratic structures.
The part of the Ferengi government we see, the Grand Nagus, is as capitalist as it gets. Note that colonizing has often been done by governments. Take a look at what the Chinese are currently doing in Africa, that's only possible with a strong autocratic government (which is basically the same as a large corporation). Hard to picture Ferengi being engaged in such activity.
Quark's business is a sole proprietorship, not a corporation.

Also I think if the Ferengi were supposed to be a commentary about capitalism run amok (specifically American capitalism) the Ferengi should have had corporations. In their first appearance they seemed like a generic warrior culture, rather then business men.

Also I don't think that just because Ferengi society is about acquiring profit, that doesn't mean every Ferengi is suited to be business leaders, its the reason why Quark ran the bar, while Rom was just his subordinate, because Quark had a more forceful personality and better business skills, despite the fact Rom had better technical skills then Quark. I do think some Ferengi would be docile enough to work in a corporation rather then everyone in their society trying to be an entrepreneur.

I think one of the problems Ferengi as villains is they had no patience and a desire for instant gratification, almost none of them seemed like more sinister, subtle long term planners. So yeah written like that, they can't create corporations, but they also don't work as effective villains either. Lex Luthor is driven by greed and ego, but he comes off as a rather subtle, long term schemer.
While I totally agree that corporate power is a serious contemporary problem I don't think that the Ferengi were meant to be much of a commentary on this.
Good point about Ferengi like Rom.
I think that realism gets automatically satisfied when you turn a species into a caricature of ourselves. I doubt that Ferengi culture as we see it would be stable in reality. We enjoy economic success and political stability because we have so many rules, explicit and implicit ones. That's the main paradox of liberalism, while we enjoy as many freedoms as never before in history we also need an abundance of rules to maintain this very space of freedom and prosperity. Ferengi seem to be basically anarchists, the only rule is that you should exploit each other. You gotta ask the Pakled question, would such a society really make it to the stars?
__________________
The illegal we do immediately; the unconstitutional takes a little longer. - former US Secretary of State and unconvicted war criminal Henry Kissinger
horatio83 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 15 2012, 10:03 AM   #8
The Green Mushroom
Commander
 
Location: United States
Re: Ferengi Corporations

I think that I have trouble seeing the Ferengi having corporations now that I think about it. It seems that the ideal of Ferengi culture is to be profitable no matter the cost to others. That theory makes it difficult for me to see Ferengi pooling their resources and working together long term to share the profits.

I can see a few Ferengi coming together for just long enough for their venture to make a buck and then turning on each other to become the one guy at the top who controls all the profit. And then only if they are family members to begin with. I can almost see that has being what happened to Quark and Rom, they worked together to get the bar started but there was no real question that Quark was the owner Rom the employee--and if Rom didn't like it, he could try and find work the other way around.

Through my (possibly limited) understanding of free market of pure capitalism, corporations are not really part of the free market system. Instead of people competing to get their share of the pie, a corporation pools the resources of many to get the whole pie before anyone else gets the chance. As I understand things, real capitalism is a bunch of mom-and-pop stores on Main Street, not an unregulated Wall Street. So maybe the non-corporation having Ferengi are better capitalists than we are.
The Green Mushroom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 17 2012, 01:52 AM   #9
Verteron
Rear Admiral
 
Verteron's Avatar
 
Location: United Kingdom
Re: Ferengi Corporations

I always rather hoped that we'd see the Ferengi developed in to the sort of reflection of ultra libertarianism, the logical conclusion of the views that some people hold in politics today, that almost everything that can be privately run should be privately run, including the obvious ones like medicine, but also things like social security, the police force (think militias protecting business for money), the education system, etc. etc.

I guess there simply weren't enough episodes to give them this sort of depth, though.

It would have been amusing to see one Grand Nagus claiming to represent some percent of all Ferengi one week and then a different one pop up the next week after a series of hostile takeovers on the homeworld made him the new "planetary CEO".

I always found the whole Ferengi social reformation a little hard to swallow, surely the best way to promote social change in Ferengi society is to set up a competing society 'megacorp' and attract your competition's clientele with the offer of clothes and medical care for low low prices!
Verteron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 17 2012, 02:05 AM   #10
Anwar
Vice Admiral
 
Anwar's Avatar
 
Location: Regina, SK, Canada
Re: Ferengi Corporations

Also, for stories about Ferengi Corporations to have much impact on the Feds, the Feds would themselves have to still have a normal capitalist economy too. The replicator and the "No Money" thing really cut off the potential of the Ferengi.
Anwar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 17 2012, 07:29 AM   #11
The Overlord
Captain
 
Re: Ferengi Corporations

Anwar wrote: View Post
Also, for stories about Ferengi Corporations to have much impact on the Feds, the Feds would themselves have to still have a normal capitalist economy too. The replicator and the "No Money" thing really cut off the potential of the Ferengi.
Ferengi Corporations could still have had an effect on the Federation even though the Federation doesn't have a capitalist economy.

If a Ferengi Corporation was dumping toxic waste on a Federation world, that would affect the Federation. If Ferengi corporations were trying to influence galactic trade policies and were campaigning against other civilizations joining the Federation because they didn't want them to join the socialist economy of the Federation, that would effect the Federation. The fact that the Federation still trades means Ferengi Corporations can try to get influence, they can always try to corner the market on something the Federation wants.
The Overlord is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 17 2012, 04:39 PM   #12
Anwar
Vice Admiral
 
Anwar's Avatar
 
Location: Regina, SK, Canada
Re: Ferengi Corporations

Yeah, that could work. Problem was that the writers were more interested in writing them as a bunch of Space Pirate wannabes instead of proper Corporate villain types (or just plain Corporate types that are neutral).

Then again, seeing how Star Wars used the same idea with the Trade Federation, maybe "Space Capitalists" are always doomed to being pansies...
Anwar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 17 2012, 09:38 PM   #13
CaptainMatt
Fleet Captain
 
Location: Sector 001
Re: Ferengi Corporations

It is a shame the writers turned them into pure comic relief.
CaptainMatt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 18 2012, 09:37 AM   #14
Yevetha
Commodore
 
Re: Ferengi Corporations

I think a ferengi megacorp is impossibel unless the workers are from offworld. Ferengi lack the discipline to keep a megacorp together.

Through my (possibly limited) understanding of free market of pure capitalism, corporations are not really part of the free market system. Instead of people competing to get their share of the pie, a corporation pools the resources of many to get the whole pie before anyone else gets the chance.
Corporations also lobby for rules to keep their competition out.
Yevetha is offline   Reply With Quote
Old January 18 2012, 10:39 PM   #15
The Overlord
Captain
 
Re: Ferengi Corporations

Yevetha wrote: View Post
I think a ferengi megacorp is impossibel unless the workers are from offworld. Ferengi lack the discipline to keep a megacorp together.
And that's why they don't work as serious villains. If the Fererngi Alliance was supposed to be a commentary about a nightmarish version of capitalism that has gone out control, having the Ferengi have so little impulse control they could never form a megacorp doesn't work. It renders them silly rather then scary and fails both political commentary and presenting menacing villains.
The Overlord is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Tags
corporations, ferengi

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump



All times are GMT +1. The time now is 04:42 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
FireFox 2+ or Internet Explorer 7+ highly recommended.