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Deep Space Nine What We Left Behind, we will always have here.

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Old May 5 2013, 07:32 AM   #1
hxclespaulplayer
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Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophets)

From a thread on a ds9 marathon on Reddit:

We know from what they've said, and how they act the Prophets are akin to the Q. Omnipresent, incredibly knowledgeable and extremely powerful beings. However since they had no concept of Linear time, they made mistakes, in the episode "The Reckoning" shows it.


There is a battle, between the Prophets and the Pah-wraiths coming. We don't when, where or how but its coming. The Bajorian equivalent of armageddon. The Pah-wraiths take their revenge on the Prophets for casting them out and not listening to them about the Sisko being dangerous.



It all comes down to that first contact. Sisko interferes with a people's way of life, and thus changes the course of history, and himself along with it. Sisko violated the Prime directive inadvertently by entering the wormhole. He interfered with the Prophets development (a secluded, and non-warp capable species) and in return, nearly brought down the entire Alpha quadrant because of it.



"The Prime Directive is not just a set of rules. It is a philosophy, and a very correct one. History has proven again and again that whenever mankind interferes with a less developed civilization, no matter how well intentioned that interference may be, the results are invariably disastrous." —Jean-Luc Picard, Symbiosis


Before DS9, the prime directive only concerned itself with less developed societies, but never before or since has it touched on what happens when mankind interferes with a more advanced one. DS9's entire story arc revolves around this.
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Old May 5 2013, 07:50 AM   #2
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

The Prime Directive has a dual meaning in Trek. One is prohibiting the interference with non-warp capable species. The other is not interfering with the internal affairs of another race.

So technically the Prophet/Paigh Wraith conflict would be a civil war and strictly an internal affair. Though by season 7, Sisko was pretty much putting higher priority on his role as Emissary over his role as a Starfleet officer, so even if anyone called him on it, I doubt he'd not have gotten involved.
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Old May 5 2013, 11:53 AM   #3
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

To be fair, "warp capable" has never been a criterion in the application of the Prime Directive. That's pure fanfic.

I guess some episode writers might believe that warp capacity matters, but no episode or movie has actually featured a reference to warp capacity mattering. TNG "First Contact" had contact coincide with the launch of a planet's first warp experiment, but other episodes featured contact with species that did not have warp drive.

The "internal matters" aspect is certainly part of the PD, though. DS9 itself establishes in "The Circle" that it's the PD specifically that stops Starfleet from interfering with the civil war on Bajor, at least until the complicity of aliens (that is, Cardassians) is verified.

Whether a conflict involving Bajorans, Prophets and Pah Wraiths would involve sufficiently many "alien parties" to disqualify it from PD protection is a matter of interpretation. The tech levels of those parties should not enter the equation, though.

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Old May 5 2013, 01:16 PM   #4
Guy Gardener
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

Voyager was getting it's ass kicked. The Prime Directive still applied.
From Prototype
TORRES: Apparently thousands of them were built as service modules, but the race who created them, these Builders, were killed off decades ago in a war.
JANEWAY: Leaving the automated units to fend for themselves.
TORRES: Now they're wearing out, breaking down. They've learnt to make repairs to themselves, some pretty complex, but the construction of a power module, the device that sustains them, is beyond their grasp. It's an incredible challenge, Captain, but with enough time to study their systems, I might be able to do it.
JANEWAY: I don't doubt your abilities, B'Elanna, but helping them reproduce is a clear violation of the Prime Directive.
TORRES: They've expressed a desire to procreate. That's basic to any life form.
JANEWAY: I'm not saying they don't have the same rights as any organic species. That's not the issue here.
TORRES: Are you sure? Suppose they were organic but they had become sterile, and we had a treatment that would enable them to start reproducing again. Would you withhold that treatment?
JANEWAY: Maybe. I'd have to know more about the circumstances. But we're not talking about treating a disorder here, are we?
TORRES: What's the difference?
Warp capable threshold... Tick!

From Blink of an Eye.
PARIS: Well, we've got to let them know we're not doing it on purpose.
TUVOK: Inadvisable. The Prime Directive still applies. This transmission was made with primitive radio technology. They are not a warp-capable civilisation.
PARIS: To hell with the Prime Directive. That man deserves an answer.
TORRES: Don't forget the temporal differential. That man has been dead for a long time. EMH: Nearly a century by now.
The warp threshold doesn't rescind the Prime Directive, it just loosens it a little, like with the barriers to drinking booze and a persons age all around the world.
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Old May 5 2013, 04:10 PM   #5
GameOn
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

The Prophet took over Sisko's mother on Earth before he was born meaning they were capable of interstellar travel.

The Prophets also constructed the wormhole which allows travel 70,000 light years across the galaxy. It may not be warp drive but if you can make wormholes then you wouldn't need it.

Getting involved in the Prophets civil war would have been prohibited in the same way Picard refused to get involved in the Klingon civil war.
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Old May 5 2013, 11:55 PM   #6
JirinPanthosa
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

The 'warp capable' threshold is the point at which the Federation introduces itself and says hi, not the point at which the prime directive stops applying.

Meeting the Prophets was not a violation of the prime directive. Besides the fact that the Prophets were already directly involved in their relationship with the Bajorans, and Sisko's goal was to meet and say hi, not to influence them. If the Prophets didn't want to talk to Sisko they wouldn't have.
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Old May 6 2013, 08:49 PM   #7
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

Asking them to cast wrath of god on the Dominion fleet is textbook influencing.
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Old May 6 2013, 10:03 PM   #8
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

The Prime Directive protects the Federation from charges of interference in a less developed species. By definition, this can't apply to a species which is MORE advanced than the Federation.
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Old May 7 2013, 02:18 AM   #9
Guy Gardener
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

How do you define "more" and "less" advanced?

Surely any species susceptible to influence is subordinate somehow now matter how powerful their ships are.
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Old May 7 2013, 02:22 AM   #10
JirinPanthosa
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

R. Star wrote: View Post
Asking them to cast wrath of god on the Dominion fleet is textbook influencing.
Then I guess it's the Prophets that broke the Prime Directive.
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Old May 7 2013, 05:06 AM   #11
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

It's not their prime directive.

It's a courtesy the Federation offers to all other races that it would be a delight if all other races extended in return to the Federation, but it's not out right expected or demanded.
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Old May 7 2013, 05:16 AM   #12
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

Guy Gardener wrote: View Post
How do you define "more" and "less" advanced?

Surely any species susceptible to influence is subordinate somehow now matter how powerful their ships are.
Put it this way: If another organization or species with technology more advanced than the Federation, decided to share it with them, then the Federation could legally accept it. There is no part of the Prime Directive which forbids the Federation from *accepting* help; it just lays out the circumstances under which it can't *give* help.
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Old May 7 2013, 05:53 AM   #13
Guy Gardener
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

TNG The Game.

"Trade" with unknown species is dangerous. Anything can be a Trojan, or unwittingly dangerous like in DS9 Rivals when Quark massreplicated a device he misunderstood that was dangerously manipulating reality.

It's not like the Federation would legally and officially buy grain from an unknown species after the last time they bought poisoned grain from assholes?

Definition of "Federation".

The Prime Directive is about Starfleet, not bog standard Federation citizens.

But still whatever Civil Service runs the Federation in the name of the Federation Council, a massive army of diplomats, governers ambassadors, overseerers, middlemen and minions... Who may not in anyway be bound by Starfleet regulations, would still be bound to have asshole insurance, which is exactly what will stop the Federaion et all from using any "gifts" from a new aquaintance before thoroughly testing to see if these gifts are trick or treat.

There's an approved list.

If you wander off the approved list, your genitals will fall off and you'll shit your brain out of the hole where your balls used to swing from.
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Old May 7 2013, 05:56 AM   #14
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

GameOn wrote: View Post
Getting involved in the Prophets civil war would have been prohibited in the same way Picard refused to get involved in the Klingon civil war.
Picard only got involved in the Klingon Civil War because the Romulans did.
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Old May 7 2013, 06:24 AM   #15
Guy Gardener
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Re: Does the prime directive apply with MORE advanced species? (prophe

And even then, he only stopped the Romulans from butting in.

Isn't it amazing how few seconds it took for the Duras supplylines to fail?

They must have sucked so hard.
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