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Old January 18 2013, 04:28 PM   #16
Timo
Admiral
 
Re: Federation members or not? (Canon sources only, please)

Although, granted, given that Picard was more of a rake in his youth, it is a little unlikely that he was unaware of the world that was later established as the go-to pleasure planet of the quadrant even as far back as the 22nd century.
One would also think that such a planet would very actively advertise itself, so Picard should probably be aware of it they way we today are aware of commercial products we don't necessarily even use...

Then again, the idea of "pleasure planets" was promoted in TOS already, and there might be plenty of competition in that respect. Perhaps Risa only becomes a favorite of our heroes (and thus a more common screen presence) after a few of them bring back good experiences, while a few others tell how prices at Wrigley's Planet and Disneyworld have gone up and quality has plummeted? Who knows which pleasure planet our DS9 heroes would choose to visit if Quark didn't receive a provision for pointing them in the direction of Risa?

It's hard to imagine most of the population striving for this and successfully keeping it a secret from outsiders.
Well, secrecy is a key part of the process even in the DS9 take on it. The people in charge of joining lie to everybody about compatibility issues; people who have already been joined may be in on the conspiracy (as our very own Dax was out cold and unable to comment in the episode where the conspiracy was revealed to the other heroes, "Equilibrium").

Just because being a Freemason or a Lion or an Alpha Phi Omegan or a Golden Pheasant or whatever is an advantageous social position doesn't mean that such membership would actually be publicly advertised, or that the society in question be marketed to the general population in any way.

Timo Saloniemi
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Old January 23 2013, 08:31 PM   #17
t_smitts
Commander
 
Re: Federation members or not? (Canon sources only, please)

Timo wrote: View Post
It's hard to imagine most of the population striving for this and successfully keeping it a secret from outsiders.
Well, secrecy is a key part of the process even in the DS9 take on it. The people in charge of joining lie to everybody about compatibility issues; people who have already been joined may be in on the conspiracy (as our very own Dax was out cold and unable to comment in the episode where the conspiracy was revealed to the other heroes, "Equilibrium").

Just because being a Freemason or a Lion or an Alpha Phi Omegan or a Golden Pheasant or whatever is an advantageous social position doesn't mean that such membership would actually be publicly advertised, or that the society in question be marketed to the general population in any way.

Timo Saloniemi
First of all, even in "The Host", Odan wasn't intentionally trying to keep his true nature a secret.

Second, even if joining were a secret for some reason, it would darn difficult to have large portions of the population applying and trying to be the best and brightest in whatever field they were in and not have outsiders find out.
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Old January 23 2013, 10:26 PM   #18
Timo
Admiral
 
Re: Federation members or not? (Canon sources only, please)

First of all, even in "The Host", Odan wasn't intentionally trying to keep his true nature a secret.
How so? He blatantly lies about why he doesn't want to use the transporter. He only comes clean when Crusher is already rummaging through his innards, for chrissakes!

it would darn difficult to have large portions of the population applying and trying to be the best and brightest in whatever field they were in and not have outsiders find out.
What outsiders? It's more usual than not for our heroes to express profound unfamiliarity with Federation member worlds - not just personally, but in descriptions like "secretive", "seclusive", "isolationist". We never heard of anybody who would have visited planet Trill before "Equilibrium" and not been part of the Trill society. Some "contacts people" must have - diplomats, trade representatives - but they would have benefited from not spreading the story, as their work would have become all the more difficult if the people on the other side of the bridges they were building found out that the Trill were parasitic monsters.

Timo Saloniemi
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Old January 24 2013, 05:09 AM   #19
t_smitts
Commander
 
Re: Federation members or not? (Canon sources only, please)

Timo wrote: View Post
First of all, even in "The Host", Odan wasn't intentionally trying to keep his true nature a secret.
How so? He blatantly lies about why he doesn't want to use the transporter. He only comes clean when Crusher is already rummaging through his innards, for chrissakes!
He was cryptic about it, but he didn't outright lie.

Timo wrote: View Post
it would darn difficult to have large portions of the population applying and trying to be the best and brightest in whatever field they were in and not have outsiders find out.
What outsiders? It's more usual than not for our heroes to express profound unfamiliarity with Federation member worlds - not just personally, but in descriptions like "secretive", "seclusive", "isolationist". We never heard of anybody who would have visited planet Trill before "Equilibrium" and not been part of the Trill society. Some "contacts people" must have - diplomats, trade representatives - but they would have benefited from not spreading the story, as their work would have become all the more difficult if the people on the other side of the bridges they were building found out that the Trill were parasitic monsters.

Timo Saloniemi
The notion of whoever from Starfleet/the Feds who made first contact, and those who subsequently negotiated Trill's entry into the Federation being deceptive about such an important aspect of Trill society seems even more far-fetched.
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Old January 24 2013, 09:52 AM   #20
Timo
Admiral
 
Re: Federation members or not? (Canon sources only, please)

He was cryptic about it, but he didn't outright lie.
...And that was with an obvious intent of maintaining tight secrecy about his true nature.

Interestingly, once again our heroes are expected to host a famous diplomat whose most fundamental specs are kept secret from them. Nobody told Picard that Riva was deaf; nobody told Picard that Sarek was senile; nobody told Picard that Odan was a parasite, or that Alkar was a mind-rapist. Moreover, the implication is that somebody took great care that this information would not have been available to Picard even if he had the prescience to look for it.

This makes perfect sense: diplomats are people with dirty secrets by profession, but OTOH diplomats need to appear squeaky-clean by profession. The degree to which their lives are shrouded in official lies probably depends on their general luminosity: celebrities enjoy greater UFP obfuscation services than the rank and file.

The notion of whoever from Starfleet/the Feds who made first contact, and those who subsequently negotiated Trill's entry into the Federation being deceptive about such an important aspect of Trill society seems even more far-fetched.
How so? The Federation wants new members and alliances - but strangers are always a threat, what with their strange and perverse ways. To sell the concept of alliance to the home front, the contact people always have to lie to smooth the edges. And we know this works in cases other than Trill: Vulcans remain an enigma to the average (and above-average) Fed, the people of Ardana disgust the visiting heroes... Indeed, basically every UFP location our heroes ever visit, be it a homeworld, colony or research outpost, harbors a secret that catches the heroes by surprise even if it really is no secret to the locals.

Timo Saloniemi
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