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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek TV Series > The Next Generation

The Next Generation All Good Things come to an end...but not here.

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Old August 3 2013, 06:37 AM   #16
jimbotron
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
Insurrection is basically Avatar but less competently preachy.
Insurrection is also Journey's End, Who Watches the Watchers and Homeward put in a blender.
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Old August 3 2013, 07:05 AM   #17
Dream
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

jimbotron wrote: View Post
JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
Insurrection is basically Avatar but less competently preachy.
Insurrection is also Journey's End, Who Watches the Watchers and Homeward put in a blender.
Let's not insult Journey's End, Who Watches the Watchers and Homeward! Those episodes are leagues better than Insurrection!
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Old August 3 2013, 02:04 PM   #18
Jeyl
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
I disagree about Insurrection. I see that as a matter of individual freedoms, and Star Trek is all about defending people's rights (Unless you're genetically enhanced). Insurrection is basically Avatar but less competently preachy.
The difference between Avatar and Insurrection was that there was really nothing at stake for humanity by not having unobtainium. So fighting against the corporate humans who are in it just for the money is a far more understanding motivation. In Insurrection, the Federation is dealing with the Dominion who at this point in time have actually been winning the war against the Federation. Since the Federation doesn't deal with money, they can actually use this medical advancement to save lives of those on the battlefield and bring in more allies with the tangible promise of a healthier life with an increased life span. It's beneficial to everyone in the galaxy, and the Baku don't even give a crap.

And as for Star Trek being about protecting individual freedoms and defending people's rights? We've seen again and again how our heroes must not interfere with any culture's way of life even if it contains the means to save the whole freaking galaxy. What do you say to that "Up The Long Ladder"?

PICARD: They started out together. It seems only fitting they should end up together.
PULASKI: It's a match made in heaven.
RIKER: Unfortunately it will have to be a shotgun wedding.

*Later*

Picard: Now, Commander Riker has asked that your laboratories be inspected for stolen tissue samples, and I understand his concern. We may have to transport all your equipment here, to the Enterprise.
Granger: I see. When reason fails, you'll resort to blackmail.
Picard: Fine. Destroy yourselves.
Pulaski: It's not so bad, Captain. In fifty years we'll have a new class M planet, complete with cities, and ready for colonisation.
Picard: You see, the end is closer than you like to think.

Yep. They'll find ways to force a human colony to breed with another human colony that they DON'T WANT TO BREED WITH for the sake of... uh... something. Defenders of individual freedoms and people's rights my aunt fanny. The crew are treating these colonists as nothing more than livestock, and you're defending them for not advancing medical science because they didn't want to inconvenience 600 people. I'm sure if the Dominion had actually won the war, they would have been very, very understanding towards the Baku's wishes for the Dominion to leave their planet alone.
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Old August 3 2013, 08:59 PM   #19
Captrek
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

Jeyl wrote: View Post
JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
I disagree about Insurrection. I see that as a matter of individual freedoms, and Star Trek is all about defending people's rights (Unless you're genetically enhanced). Insurrection is basically Avatar but less competently preachy.
The difference between Avatar and Insurrection was that there was really nothing at stake for humanity by not having unobtainium.
We don't know that. The corporate execs talk about share price—that is their function, after all—but the movie never tells us why someone is willing to pay so much for it. For all we know it's the only way to stave off a catastrophe that will end the human race, and the survival of humanity is traded in the end for a tree.

What Avatar and Insurrection have in common is that they look only at one side of the dispute. Avatar doesn't show us why the unobtanium is important just like Insurrection doesn't show us the millions of sick and dying people desperately awaiting the medical treatment only these particles can provide.

As Picard says in Insurrection, "It's too easy to turn a blind eye to the suffering of a people you don't know." Both films exploit that by not letting us know the people whose suffering the heroes so gleefully cause.
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Old August 3 2013, 10:43 PM   #20
Makarov
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

I like this episode a lot, although the kid is a bit strange. Mainly I just like the whole ceremony thing with Worf.

I wonder if Jeremy Astor would actually have any more interaction with Worf as he got older? "We will be brothers." Do they just drop him off at the next starbase? Or does he stay on the enterprise?
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Old August 3 2013, 11:24 PM   #21
JirinPanthosa
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

Unobotainium was basically space oil. It's a lifestyle enhancer.

I don't remember what they were saying about the Dominion in the movie, I haven't seen it since it first came out and I didn't catch DS9 until it aired on Spike. But 'It helps the war effort' is something you can say no matter what when there's a war on, and mild technical advancements fall under that umbrella. And they only through the war reference in for continuity sake with the ongoing series, in the episode they mostly talked about the awesomeness of Geordi getting his eyes back.

And Up The Long Ladder was a terrible episode and the solution a necessity for survival which they talked them into, they did not coerce them into it. Protecting a smaller power from a coercive larger power is a common theme in Star Trek. Star Trek characters would always risk their survival to avoid behaving like a dictator, Insurrection is just an extension of that. It's the same with Stargate, where they had several episodes where stealing technology to help the war effort is bad.
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Old August 4 2013, 12:00 AM   #22
Captrek
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
Unobotainium was basically space oil. It's a lifestyle enhancer.
Is that explicitly established in the film, or are you assuming?

I don't remember what they were saying about the Dominion in the movie, I haven't seen it since it first came out and I didn't catch DS9 until it aired on Spike. But 'It helps the war effort' is something you can say no matter what when there's a war on, and mild technical advancements fall under that umbrella.
Dougherty states explicitly that the medical treatments made possible by these particles will help billions. That's billions, with a B. There is no indication that he's lying. War or no war, we're talking about the healthcare of billions being thwarted by 600.


And Up The Long Ladder was a terrible episode and the solution a necessity for survival which they talked them into, they did not coerce them into it. Protecting a smaller power from a coercive larger power is a common theme in Star Trek.
What is a common theme, especially starting with TNG, is making very subjective judgments about who are good guys and who are bad guys and imposing that judgment on others.

Starfleet wants to relocate the Ba'ku in order to provide medical care to billions of people. This is regarded as an outrageous crime. The Ba'ku exiled the S'ona from the same planet for the benefit of nobody but the Ba'ku themselves. This is totally cool.
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Old August 5 2013, 12:45 AM   #23
JirinPanthosa
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

If we're going to go down that road, then nobody has any right to their own property so long as somebody somewhere will benefit from stripping that property from them.
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Old August 5 2013, 03:25 AM   #24
Makarov
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

Since you guys are talking about Insurrection, I always wonder why the enterprise crew didn't defend the people in "Ensigns of Command" from the aliens making them move from their homeland. Instead they convince them to leave...
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Old August 5 2013, 06:02 PM   #25
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

Makarov wrote: View Post
Since you guys are talking about Insurrection, I always wonder why the enterprise crew didn't defend the people in "Ensigns of Command" from the aliens making them move from their homeland.
They were bound by treaty between the Federation and the Sheliak, according to which this planet belonged to the Sheliak. Since the planet was thought to be uninhabitable by humans, it probably didn't seem like a big deal to give it to the Sheliak in the treaty.

One can very reasonably argue that giving the presumed-uninhabited-but-later-discovered-to-be-very-slightly-inhabited planet to the Sheliak and forcibly relocating the colonists is not meaningfully different from giving such a planet over to medical mining and forcibly relocating the Ba'ku, and therefore that the heroes' behavior in TEOC is inconsistent with their behavior in INS. However, their behavior in INS is ludicrous, so I don't consider that to be a flaw in TEOC.
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Old August 6 2013, 02:58 PM   #26
Jeyl
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

JirinPanthosa wrote: View Post
If we're going to go down that road, then nobody has any right to their own property so long as somebody somewhere will benefit from stripping that property from them.
If only the crew had asked the Baku nicely about what kind of situation the galaxy is in and why the planet's rings could help bring this war to an end. Oh, wait. We can't ask the Baku because if we did, they might actually reconsider staying on their home world and help the galaxy, and their former colonists that they exiled a way to prevail. There would be no movie. Now you're probably thinking "But the Baku would probably decide against leaving" which would also create another problem. They would be seen as selfish, arrogant a**holes who want this immortal power all to themselves and are perfectly content with the prospect of the entire Alpha Quadrant being subjected to Dominion rule which would no doubt result in their eventual discovery of their home world by the Dominion, and I highly doubt the Dominion would care about the well being of 600 jerks.
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Old August 6 2013, 05:36 PM   #27
Captrek
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

Picardís argument is this:
PICARD: The Ba'ku. ...We are betraying the principles upon which the Federation was founded. It's an attack upon its very soul. ...And it will destroy the Ba'ku ...just as cultures have been destroyed in every other forced relocation throughout history.
DOUGHERTY: Jean-Luc, we are only moving six hundred people.
PICARD: How many people does it take, Admiral, before it becomes wrong? A thousand? Fifty thousand? A million? How many people does it take, Admiral?
The fundamental claim here is that when itís not obvious where to draw the line the only morally defensible position is extremism. He makes a similar argument for the Prime Directive in Pen Pals. Itís a lazy and destructive way of thinking.

I wonder if Picard has considered the same argument from the other direction. What if, instead of 600, it were only 300 Ba'ku? 100? 30? Ten? Three? One guy enjoying the planet all to himself? What is the magic number of people who must be living on the planet before it becomes a moral imperative to violate orders, sabotage the particle collection and sacrifice the welfare of billions in order to avoid disrupting the lives of the people living there?
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Old August 6 2013, 05:42 PM   #28
BillJ
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

Captrek wrote: View Post
Picard’s argument is this:
PICARD: The Ba'ku. ...We are betraying the principles upon which the Federation was founded. It's an attack upon its very soul. ...And it will destroy the Ba'ku ...just as cultures have been destroyed in every other forced relocation throughout history.
DOUGHERTY: Jean-Luc, we are only moving six hundred people.
PICARD: How many people does it take, Admiral, before it becomes wrong? A thousand? Fifty thousand? A million? How many people does it take, Admiral?
The fundamental claim here is that when it’s not obvious where to draw the line the only morally defensible position is extremism. He makes a similar argument for the Prime Directive in Pen Pals. It’s a lazy and destructive way of thinking.

I wonder if Picard has considered the same argument from the other direction. What if, instead of 600, it were only 300 Ba'ku? 100? 30? Ten? Three? One guy enjoying the planet all to himself? What is the magic number of people who must be living on the planet before it becomes a moral imperative to violate orders, sabotage the particle collection and sacrifice the welfare of billions in order to avoid disrupting the lives of the people living there?
17.

Seventeen or less and you can use the resources. Eighteen or more and it's hands off.

I agree with the point you make here.

The same thing irritates me about Homeward. The message is that it's better to be dead than to adapt to a new situation.
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Old August 6 2013, 06:25 PM   #29
Captrek
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

The fundamental claim here is that when itís not obvious where to draw the line the only morally defensible position is extremism. He makes a similar argument for the Prime Directive in Pen Pals.
BTW, this absolutist philosophy is a sharp contrast to Picardís position in Justice that ďthere can be no justice so long as laws are absolute.Ē As you may recall, Iím no fan of that scene either. Not only does Picard take two opposite sides on the issue depending on his personal affection for the affected parties, he does a shitty job of arguing his case no matter which side heís on.
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Old August 6 2013, 06:34 PM   #30
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Re: Episode of the Week: 3x05 "The Bonding"

Yeah, old Picard was just as inconsistent with the rulebook as Janeway was.
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