Before Dishonour....seriously?!

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by sosolidshoe, Jul 3, 2011.

  1. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2002
    Location:
    Montgomery County, State of Maryland
    Or maybe it's no one's fault but the Borg's.

    Just a thought.
     
  2. Edit_XYZ

    Edit_XYZ Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2011
    Location:
    At star's end.
    Slipstream may be less efficient than transwarp, but it's FAR more efficient than mere warp.
    If the borg doesn't have transwarp, it will recourse to slip-stream.

    About transwarp - from 'Q, who' to 'Endgame' - aka in a few years - the borg built a transwarp tunnel leading into the heart of the federation (sol system)
    In DS9 'Lesser evil', after finding out about the dominion from the federation, the borg built a transwarp tunnel to the gamma quadrant - aka in a few years.

    Which means - destoying the transwarp hub would 'contain' the borg for 3-5 years, at most.

    Janeway won a few engagements with the borg in the delta quadrant, yes, but all her victories were small-scale:
    In 'Scorpion', it was established that the borg has MILLIONS OF CUBES.

    In 'Destiny', we saw how a borg invasion against the federation (and everyone else in the alpha and beta quadrants) played out:
    The borg, sending only 7000+ cubes (a VERY SMALL fleet, by its standards), BRUTALIZED starfleet (and everyone else); it squashed them as if they were mere insects.

    The gulf between the borg's military technology/numbers and the federation's was shown to be hopelessly large by the time of 'Endgame'.
    So large that any half-decent computer simulation would show that, in the case of even a smallish borg invasion, starfleet/the federation's chances of survival are so small as to be merely mathematical abstractions.

    Janeway essentially gambled that the federation would win a lottery with VERY small chances of winning. And she gambled with the lives of all federation citizens in existence, lives she, as a starfleet officer, was sworn to protect.

    As for Janeway's faith in the federation that "I do not share" - having faith that you'll win the lottery tomorrow just because you bought a ticket is both foolish and reckless.
    And, of course, 'Destiny' showed that Janeway's faith in the federation was misplaced.

    The point about pissing the borg off was not raised in 'Endgame' simply beause the scenarists didn't think the situation through; they just wanted to make a showy return home for voyager and didn't bother with the geo-political implications for the trekverse.

    The difference is the borg will come later, not 'now', giving the federation the time to prepare.

    When the transwarp hub was destroyed, the federation had no chance in hell of surviving even a smallish borg invasion.
    But, only a few decades later, as per old Janeway, the federation will be in a FAR better position to confront the borg.

    The good news was that, until the transwarp hub was destroyed, the federation was very low on the borg's list of priorities - since 'Q, who', it only sent TWO CUBES (out of MILLIONS) to attack the federation; barely scouting missions, considering the borg's resources.
    The borg doesn't need 'preparations' in order to send a few hundreds/thousands of cubes - it has MILLIONS!
    The "ultimate showdown" between a mosquito and a bug zapper!:guffaw:

    About what Janeway&co learned - Voyager was communicating with the federation on a regular basis by the time of 'Endgame'; the learned information could be sent easily.

    In the given situation, Janeway's job was to keep the federation a low priority for the borg until the federation actually stood a chance against the collective.

    Old Janeway travelled back through time in order to bring her crew (specially 7 of 9) home. Her plan involved showing off to the borg anachronistic technology, highly effective against the collective (transphasics&co). Thus, there was a good chance her plan would focus the collective's attention on the federation - which translates into A LOT MORE than one cube participating in an imminent next borg attack.
    Young Janeway agreed with the showing off part of the plan.

    Yes, the crew's motivation for destroying the transwarp hub was to cut off the borg from the rest of the galaxy.
    And they agreed to put their lives at risk in order to accomplish this - as is their right.
    What the crew did NOT have the right to do is put at such an insane risk the lives of billions of federation citizens - of the entire federation they were sworn to protect.

    Having the cake and eating it too would mean Voyager getting home and the borg being cut off from the galaxy.
    The latter part did NOT come to pass - as the 64 BILLION dead that paid with their blood for this 'cake' can attest to.

    Worse - based on information available to Voyager by the time of 'Endgame', that this latter part will not come to pass was eminently predictable. Just as the federation being crushed if the borg ever sent a few thousand cubes was eminently predictable.

    Janeway&co were either staggeringly reckless or staggeringly megalomaniac, confident in their own infailibility, when they made the choice to destroy the transwarp hub - given the geopolitical situation of the trekverse.
    So yes, they were either criminally negligent or criminally stupid or both.

    Of course, it was not the intent of the scenarists to present the characters in this manner. As said, they simply didn't think things through - or care about the larger implications of Janeway&co's actions. Which is why these 'larger implications' were not on the table.


    At present, the only way Janeway's decision could be seen as reasonable is if there were CREDIBLE REASONS for her to be sure of the fact that the borg can't use slipstream (to send cubes wherever it wants in the glaxy in little time); can't rebuild the transwarp network (for the next few decades); can't use another 'beyond warp' tech assimilated from whomever for rapid travel.
    Needless to say, such 'credible reasons' are nowhere established.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2011
  3. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2002
    Location:
    Montgomery County, State of Maryland
    ^^ You have a remarkable capacity to speak with absolute certainty about things that can only reasonably be inferred with hindsight. Perhaps you should become a trial lawyer.
     
  4. Elias Vaughn

    Elias Vaughn Captain Captain

    I haven't seen Endgame in, like, forever, so someone correct me if I'm wrong, but... Didn't Janeway originally want to leave the hub alone until she was handed defensive technology that let Voyager handle Borg attacks, and a torpedo that could kill a Cube in one shot? Why would she ever consider the Federation to be vulnerable to the Borg if she had those?
     
  5. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    The Borg inevitably adapt to any new defense in time; in fact, they adapted to the ablative armor in "Endgame" itself. The value of the new weapons was simply that they were new, that the Borg hadn't dealt with them yet and thus hadn't adapted. That made their benefit short-term at best. That's why Nechayev was so reluctant to authorize the use of transphasic torpedoes during the Invasion -- because the more they were used, the quicker the Borg would adapt to them and render them useless (like the way germs develop resistance to antibiotics and disinfectants if you overuse them).
     
  6. rfmcdpei

    rfmcdpei Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2008
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    The Borg attacks made on the Federation post-Endgame didn't make use of slipstream or transwarp, but involved either Borg vessels stranded in the area of the Federation or Borg vessels dispatched directly from the Collective via the unknown Caeliar species' wholly unknown subspace tunnels.
     
  7. Elias Vaughn

    Elias Vaughn Captain Captain

    All true, but there was some dissension on the topic; I think it was Admiral Shelby who scoffed at the idea that the Borg could adapt to something that kills in one shot. Janeway could have thought something similar.
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    No, Janeway was familiar enough with the Borg to know they'd adapt to anything in time. But of course she couldn't possibly have known that the Borg would find an alternate route to the UFP as quickly as they did, leaving the UFP so little time to develop further defenses.

    In fact, if I recall Homecoming/The Farther Shore correctly, didn't Starfleet Command pretty much shut the Voyager crew out of the process of researching and developing the enhanced technologies they brought back from the Delta Quadrant? Given the choice, Janeway would probably have pushed Starfleet to develop anti-Borg defenses faster because she understood the continuing threat they posed, but Starfleet was still recovering from the Dominion War and was maybe reluctant to face the prospect of another existential threat so soon, so they dragged their feet on it. So if anyone was complacent about the threat from the Borg, it wasn't Janeway.
     
  9. bfollowell

    bfollowell Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    Location:
    Evansville, IN, USA
    Well, I did it. I just finished Before Dishonor. I have to say, I really don't see what all the fuss is about. I mean, for more than a year now, ever since joining this forum, every so often I've read some new set of posts going on and on about how this is the worst TrekLit ever written and how the killing off of Janeway is the worst crime known to man.

    I have to say, I just don't get it. I mean, it is far from the best TrekLit I've ever read. It's far from the best Peter David novel I've ever read. It's far from the worst of either also. Yes, it has some of Peter's typical quirkiness; big deal. Yes, he killed of Janeway and I don't see why it was necessary, but then again, I rarely see why the death of any character is absolutely necessary. It's just a plot element and I don't tell the author's how to do their jobs.

    I guess, after all the negative hype I've been reading for the past year, this novel was really anti-climatic. Yes, Janeway's dead, or not dead, depending on how you choose to look at it. I guess that's a bad thing if you're a huge Janeway fan. Personally, I liked her in the show but, the way she was being written into the relaunch novels, well, I just found her annoying and won't miss her at all.

    OK, now it's time to move on. I'm only two books away from Destiny and I don't have time to worry about Janeway's fate or how supposedly bad this novel was.

    Happy New Year to everyone. Make sure to read plenty in the the new year, TrekLit or otherwise.

    - Byron
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2012
  10. Edit_XYZ

    Edit_XYZ Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2011
    Location:
    At star's end.
    I never said it cannot be done, rfmcdpei.

    PS - Happy New Year to all!
     
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2012
  11. Killandra

    Killandra Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    I guess the question is how much of the content was he told he had to include and how much of it was his idea? Either way, I enjoy his stuff usually both in novels and comics, that I can let one slide as long as it doesn't become a habit. I would say Before Dishonor is definitely his worst...and not just because I'm a Janeway fan.
     
  12. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2008
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    ^ Aside from killing Janeway and in some way using the cube from Resistance, I'm fairly sure everything was his idea. Not that that helps his case any, but since you were curious :)
     
  13. MatthiasRussell

    MatthiasRussell Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    Location:
    Seattle
    In which book did the Borg start absorbing rather than assimilating? I thought that was a cool change because we saw the Borg evolve to become more dangerous. I remember absorption in BF because I remember the Thunderchild being absorbed; I don't remember this happening to the Einstein/Frankenstein.
     
  14. bfollowell

    bfollowell Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    Location:
    Evansville, IN, USA
    This happened in Before Dishonor, the title I just finished.

    - Byron
     
  15. Killandra

    Killandra Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2011
    Location:
    Virginia
    Just trying to play devil's advocate. :) We all have our opinions, but I am always willing to at least hear the other side(s) of the story. :)
     
  16. Paper Moon

    Paper Moon Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2011
    Not to be a Johnny-come-27-pages-late(ly) to the discussion, but I want to echo what bfollowell said last page: I don't really get what all the fuss about BD is.

    To be honest, my only qualm about this book is that it's perhaps just a little bit too... fun. When you put it next to Mack's Destiny, Peter David's treatment of the Borg does seem a little bit flippant.

    But that aside, there are so many awesome moments in here. One of my favorite passages in TrekLit is Worf's reaction to the mutiny. I mean, maybe it's a touch unrealistic within the Trekverse, but it's certainly not the first thing to be so. And anyway, Picard, Worf, LaForge, Crusher, Spock... they really are legends. And heroes. And this book treats them as such. Call me shallow, but I like my heroes to get the hero-treatment once in a while.

    (Spock knowing about the mutiny ahead of time, his locking out the computer just like in "The Menagerie," Seven and Spock's gentle competition, the depiction of the original crew's loyalty to Picard, Calhoun "crowning" Picard commodore of the fleet, the Sarek School of Diplomacy... awesome moments.)

    And this book really took me on a ride. I couldn't put it down, it got my heart beating, it totally drew me in. And Janeway's death, which I thought, to be honest, was done well, including her interaction with Lady Q at the end, was really part of that. It was like, "Oh my god, he's really killed her. Damn, anything might happen now." Which was why Seven's near death and subsequent rescue by Vargo was so dramatically satisfying.

    Yeah, the story is not nearly as serious as Destiny. Or the other Borg stories that bookend it. But, in my opinion, it's a really great adventure. And I actually quite like it for being so.
     
  17. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2004
    Location:
    New Therin Park, Andor (via Australia)
    It also ends up being a sequel of sorts to PAD's "Vendetta", the very first Borg novel.
     
  18. JB2005

    JB2005 Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2009
    Location:
    England, UK
    I'd just like to throw out there that Edit_XYZ was moralising killing all the Borg in terms of self defence/necessity...

    I've said before and I'll say again I'm not too hot on US Law, I watch Boston Legal but that's where my knowledge begins and ends, so what I'm about to say speaks to English Law:

    Necessity is never a defence to murder, never. If someone puts a gun to your head and tells you to kill a third person or you will die, English Law expects that you will do the right and proper thing and refuse to do so even if this means that you will die - nothing will ever give you the right to decide your life is more important than an innocent person.

    And that's what we're talking about with the Borg, killing innocent people. It is the consciousness which is causing the borg to assimilate. Not the Drones. Picard's solution is akin to destroying every terminal that can access the internet in the world, because then we will destroy computer viruses...

    And as for self defence, in order to suceed in self defence you have to be able to show that you believed that there was an immediate threat and that in those circumstances your actions were justified...genocide can never be a justifiable defence. Never. If you're telling me that the Federation's policy is "it is better that you all die so that we might live" then I want the Borg to win...at least there's no malice in what they're doing...the Borg are the embodiment of the phrase "we're from the government and we're here to help you" and nothing more, there is no evil in what they do...
     
  19. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Well, no intentional evil. But a lot of the evil in the world is done in the belief that it's justified or beneficial. Evil is in the consequences.
     
  20. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 10, 2005
    Location:
    The visitor's bullpen
    Exactly. The Borg may not have evil *intent*, but their actions still qualify as such. Evil is as evil does, as Forrest Gump might say.

    That being said, genocidal tactics to wipe them out are just as evil, and thankfully never had to be used.
     

Share This Page