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Old April 6 2013, 12:26 AM   #16
C.E. Evans
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

indolover wrote: View Post
One thing I've wondered though is how come the Federation has never encountered and incorporated a culture with transwarp. It seems most members are at an equal technological level, but the major requirements we see are a planetary government, social and cultural equality and warp technology.
The Borg had transwarp technology, but they really weren't into sharing it with the Federation (at least not without a very high price).
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Old April 6 2013, 09:15 AM   #17
Elvira
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

indolover wrote: View Post
T'Girl wrote: View Post
That is a contradictory statement.
Not really. It could be equivalent to US 10th Amendment. The Federation central government may allow the planets autonomy in local/planetary affairs.
But that assumes that all the Members lose their powers as sovereign Nations when they join together into the Federation.
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Old April 7 2013, 05:53 AM   #18
indolover
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

To some extent they do, who knows? Certainly they lose some sovereignty in foreign and military policy, as Starfleet's purpose is to defend the Federation.
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Old April 7 2013, 06:58 AM   #19
Elvira
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

indolover wrote: View Post
To some extent they do, who knows? Certainly they lose some sovereignty in foreign and military policy, as Starfleet's purpose is to defend the Federation.
But Member worlds do seemingly retain the ability of both independent foreign policy and independent military action. In Allegiance the Bolians had a military conflict with the Moropa and made the decision not to bring in Starfleet. Today, nations do fight wars, and don't ask their allies for help, even when they can.

The Bolians pursued an independent foreign policy. And we've seen examples that the Vulcans do the same thing, have their own armed starships, a independent foreign policy, and exchange embassies with foreign powers. The Betazed have their own planetary defense forces.

Plus there is the evidence from Cloud Minders that the Federation Council is basically powerless to tell it's Members what to do.

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Old April 7 2013, 08:32 PM   #20
Lt. Cheka Wey
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

Do new members have to embrace utopian values right away? Or it's like the US where the Swiss reps sits next to a mass murderer?
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Old April 7 2013, 10:17 PM   #21
indolover
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

T'Girl wrote: View Post
indolover wrote: View Post
To some extent they do, who knows? Certainly they lose some sovereignty in foreign and military policy, as Starfleet's purpose is to defend the Federation.
But Member worlds do seemingly retain the ability of both independent foreign policy and independent military action. In Allegiance the Bolians had a military conflict with the Moropa and made the decision not to bring in Starfleet. Today, nations do fight wars, and don't ask their allies for help, even when they can.

The Bolians pursued an independent foreign policy. And we've seen examples that the Vulcans do the same thing, have their own armed starships, a independent foreign policy, and exchange embassies with foreign powers. The Betazed have their own planetary defense forces.

Plus there is the evidence from Cloud Minders that the Federation Council is basically powerless to tell it's Members what to do.

yet it was stated that the Bajoran Militia was to be incorporated into Starfleet. Betazed also had a Starfleet contingent, which is how Will Riker initially met Deanna Troi. Either they are sovereign entities or they are not, it doesn't go both ways.
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Old April 7 2013, 11:06 PM   #22
Timelord Victorious
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

Well, from what we know the minimum of Federation required participation is joined military forces (Bajoran example), shared knowledge and technology (Memory Alpha) and shared resources.

Population is not drafted into Starfleet, there is a clear majority of founder and core member worlds providing voluntary forces..
But existing military has to switch uniforms.

Requirements to join the Federation in the first place are a minimum technological level (warp capable) and social development level.
Global unity is important (Kes-Pritt).

Any member world can provide a presidential candidate, we have seen 2 aliens doing the job.

We know the Federation counsel has a say in overall Starfleet matters but I don't remember the council overruling a particular world goverment (with the possible exception of Earth, which seems to have become the Federation capital in a similar way as Washington DC or Berlin are their nation's capitals without belonging to a single federal state.
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Old April 7 2013, 11:50 PM   #23
George Steinbrenner
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

Timelord_Victorious wrote: View Post
with the possible exception of Earth, which seems to have become the Federation capital in a similar way as Washington DC or Berlin are their nation's capitals without belonging to a single federal state.
Earth does have its own government, it's called United Earth.

We were supposed to see Jaresh-Inyo "federalizing" UE forces in that DS9 two-parter but it got cut for time.
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Old April 8 2013, 01:51 AM   #24
Elvira
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

Lt. Cheka Wey wrote: View Post
Do new members have to embrace utopian values right away?
The Membership never apparently universally adopted Vulcan emotional control, so whether or not they adopt "utopian values" would be up to them.

Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations

indolover wrote: View Post
yet it was stated that the Bajoran Militia was to be incorporated into Starfleet.
I believe the term used was absorbed (e.g. to accommodate, or take in).

This might be like when a new member nation in NATO alters their military command and support structures so as that they can co-ordinate joint operations with other NATO members . But the member retains direct control over their military.

Betazed also had a Starfleet contingent, which is how Will Riker initially met Deanna Troi.
I think that was a case of Deanna choosing to join Starfleet. If she had joined the Betazed Defense Forces, she wouldn't have been a Starfleet officer.

Either they are sovereign entities or they are not, it doesn't go both ways.
I would agree. But I see the Federation as more a multination organization of some sort, and not a state entity in of itself.

A collection of completely sovereign interstellar nations, and not subserviant subdivisions.

Timelord_Victorious wrote: View Post
We know the Federation counsel has a say in overall Starfleet matters
It's interesting that while the President did once referred to himself as the commander in chief, it very obvious that Starfleet gets it instructions from the Council ... and not the President.

Timelord_Victorious wrote: View Post
... with the possible exception of Earth, which seems to have become the Federation capital in a similar way as Washington DC or Berlin are their nation's capitals without belonging to a single federal state.
Where the various Federation buildings stand, the real estate might in some ways be "extraterritorial." Not officially on the surface of Earth.

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Old April 11 2013, 01:10 AM   #25
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

The argument over whether or not the Federation itself constitutes a sovereign state is a function of the fact that the writers' ideas about what the Federation is supposed to be have evolved over time.

I would argue that the preponderance of evidence would indicate that the Federation is a sovereign state, albeit one which delegates greater autonomy to its constituent polities than modern sovereigns do. I outline my thoughts here.

In Star Trek VI, however, the depiction of the Federation takes another step in the direction of "interstellar state," and starts to suggest a pseduo-American allegory. We see the Federation President conducting foreign policy towards the Klingon Empire on behalf of all Federation Member worlds, even negotiating and signing a binding peace treaty. The President is also the target of an assassination plot that the conspirators believe will lead to a war, in parallel with the assassination of the Klingon Chancellor, who is clearly the Klingon head of government. So the implication seems to be that the Federation President is both head of government and head of state.

We also see the President more explicitly being depicted as having complete authority over Starfleet -- proposals are made to the President and not the full Council, further suggesting an American model (since, after all, the US armed forces are under the operation control of the US President and not the US Congress). Still, by this point, there have also been several examples of Starfleet taking orders from the full Council in TNG; this may be seen as contradicting an American model, or, at the very least, as complicating it.

TNG, however, brings us a step further in the direction of "Federation as interstellar state" model when we see that the Federation Council, in "Forces of Nature," has declared a Federation-wide "speed limit" of Warp 5. We have previously seen the Council making decisions that are binding on Starfleet, but, if I recall correctly, this is the first time we see that the Council can make laws that are binding on everyone within the Federation. The legislative nature of the Federation Council is re-enforced with references to the Council debating over whether or not to ratify the Federation-Cardassian Treaty in TNG's "Journey's End;" treaty ratification, in addition to once again establishing the Federation's authority to conduct foreign affairs and making binding law over its Member worlds, treaty ratification is a clear trait of a state's legislature. With these episodes, then, it becomes clear that the Federation Council is a legislature.

DS9 brings us back to a more explicitly American model. In "Homefront"/"Paradise Lost," the Federation Starfleet is once again depicted as answering primarily to the Federation President. When Sisko and Leyton propose an upgrade in Starfleet security and in security on Earth, they propose it to President Jaresh-Inyo, not the full Council. The President is also referred to as being Starfleet's "commander-in-chief," further suggesting an American model. Jaresh-Inyo is also referred to as the "elected President;" this would seem to clearly establish an American model, at least for the Federation Presidency, since the head of government in a parliamentary system is usually appointed from the parliament. (The State of Israel was a brief exception to this rule in the early 21st Century, when the Prime Minister was popularly elected.)

On top of this, the Federation President -- in spite of his not being from Earth -- is clearly depicted as having the authority to place Earth, a Federation Member world, under martial law. This would seem to solidify the Federation-as-interstellar-state model, as opposed to a Federation-as-UN or Federation-as-alliance model; confederations and alliances do not have the authority to place their members under martial law and direct central control, but states do. NATO cannot place France under martial law -- but Great Britain can certainly place England under martial law, and apparently the Federation can place its Members under it, too.

A later DS9 episode, "Extreme Measures," further establishes the existence of a Federation Cabinet. This would seem to be the final nail in the coffin of any view other than that of the Federation as an interstellar state; states have cabinets, alliances do not. This would be compatible with both a parliamentary or American-style presidential system of government, but previous evidence, as I outlined above, indicates an American-influenced model.
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Old April 11 2013, 01:15 AM   #26
George Steinbrenner
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

Assuming the Federation President is also the Commander in Chief of Starfleet, then what is the "C-in-C" (Admiral Smillie) from ST VI supposed to be?
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Old April 11 2013, 01:54 AM   #27
Sci
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
Assuming the Federation President is also the Commander in Chief of Starfleet, then what is the "C-in-C" (Admiral Smillie) from ST VI supposed to be?
"Commander-in-chief" is not a term solely reserved for the person in command of a state's entire military services. It can also be used for persons in charge of segments of a service. For instance, up until the Bush Administration, the commanding officers of the Unified Combatant Commands (the U.S. Defense Department's operating theaters for its forces in different parts of the globe) were known as the commanders-in-chief of their UCC. So you could have, say, the Commander-in-Chief of United States European Command, serving alongside the Commander-in-Chief of United States Central Command, and both serving under the Secretary of Defense, and the Secretary of Defense serving under the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces (the President). (In 2002, the Bush Administration changed their titles to "Unified Combatant Commanders," in order to preserve the title "commander-in-chief" for the sitting president.)

So the C-in-C in ST6 (called Admiral William Smilie in the novels) may have, for instance, had a more limited command brief. Maybe Admiral Smilie was commander-in-chief of Starfleet, and the President is commander-in-chief of all UFP armed forces including Starfleet.
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Old April 12 2013, 01:17 AM   #28
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

Sci wrote: View Post
Maybe Admiral Smilie was commander-in-chief of Starfleet, and the President is commander-in-chief of all UFP armed forces including Starfleet.
I'm OK with that.

If that's so, I wonder if any of those other people at the table were, to use an example I just made up, the Commandant of the SFMC. Sure, they all wore the same uniform design, but that's just nitpicking at its finest.
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Old April 14 2013, 10:26 PM   #29
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

While the Federation appears to be based on a form of American government, lets not forget that while the US government has looked the same from the outside since it was created (President and his cabinet, Congress) that the power of the Federal government was limited compared to today. It evolved into what it is today, and while the Federation government is probably doing the same in the Star Trek verse, we can still have a limited government with what we saw.

The member worlds can still have a lot of power, and the Federation may provide support to these worlds power. Todays example is taxes. Wealthier US states pay more taxes and are a ble to self sustain in a lot of areas, while poorer US states don't pay as much and receive Federal aid to help the states stay equal with the others.

So for example, a planet like Bajor is receiving a lot of Federation aid to build the planet up. On the other hand, Vulcan probably receives little aid since it doesn't require it. As long as the Federation has a large amount of resources in its control, it can redistribute these resources to the poorer planets to help encourage development. If this can be sustained (the poorer planets building up and becoming suppliers themselves) then the Federation can continue to expand.

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Old April 17 2013, 12:55 PM   #30
Richard III
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Re: Political expansion limits of the Federation

I always see the European Union as the best real-life comparison to the Federation. The member worlds remain independent although part of a wider family with certain obligations on membership.

In this case, assimilation of a military into Starfleet and probably rules relating to anti-protectionism, free trade, and establishing a legal framework to ensure no discrimination in favour or against other Federation species!

In any arrangement like this there has to be a central administration monitoring the level playing field and doing the legal legwork. Someone somewhere has to intervene when the Betazoids are using telepathy to skew their wins in the annual Orion Poker festival.

Planets at a certain distance from this are too far away to communicate with effectively, from the centre, and this skews the level playing field. This probably offers a practical expansion limit to the Federation as suggested by the OP.
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