My "Just Saw Insurrection For the First Time" Review.

Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies I-X' started by Dale Sams, Jan 7, 2013.

  1. BillJ

    BillJ Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2001
    Location:
    alt.nerd.obsessive.pic
    They can and should've went through with the plan. The Ba'ku needed to be moved in order for the Federation to collect a resource in Federation space.

    I can guarantee that if the Federation caught wind of a Romulan invasion that was going to cut through Malcorian (First Contact) space, they would make a stand there if it made sense regardless of what the Malcorians think. See Errand of Mercy.

    Ideally yes. But the good guys are still wise to pay attention to logic, common sense and extraordinary circumstance. If the Prime Directive was a hard and fast rule, it wouldn't have forty-seven subsections. We wouldn't have the Omega Directive.

    Now for the record (something I've stated before), I don't think Meta-phasic radiation is a game changer for the Federation. My reasons for moving the Ba'ku are more about the long-term survival of the Ba'ku and the likelyhood Starfleet would become involved in a protracted conflict over control of the Briar Patch at some point in the future.
     
  2. Robert Maxwell

    Robert Maxwell Comfortably Numb Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2001
    Location:
    where it hurts
    Stuff orbitally locked to a planet (such as the metaphasic rings) should be considered part of that planet, rather than the space around it--at least if we're talking about what the Federation can screw around with. Imagine the Ba'ku launched a satellite into orbit of the planet. Would that satellite then belong to the Federation, since it's in "Federation space"? This strikes me as hairsplitting. The rings belong to the planet. They are effectively part of the planet. The Federation has no business touching them without permission.

    Of course. But that's just as much for the sake of the Malcorians as the rest of the Federation. The Romulans are known hostiles.

    It's still hard to justify forcibly relocating people so that the Federation can extract a resource that doesn't really belong to them. If the planet was totally uninhabited, then the Feds could do whatever they wanted with the rings. The whole idea behind surreptitiously relocating the Ba'ku is so they can't object to having their planet destroyed--by the time they would've realized what happened, it would be too late. Pretty shady for the supposed "good guys."

    The Federation really has no business deciding what's in the best interests of the Ba'ku. They aren't Federation citizens.

    If the Federation simply withdrew from the Briar Patch and told the Ba'ku "you're on your own," that would at least be a consistent, defensible strategy. "We're kicking you off your planet so we can take your stuff" is not.
     
  3. BillJ

    BillJ Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2001
    Location:
    alt.nerd.obsessive.pic
    The only whose been hairsplitting is you.

    You keep changing the dynamics of the argument when your points are picked apart.

    Either the Ba'ku planet is or isn't a Federation planet? This is the sole argument that matters. If it is, then the Federation is within its right to relocate six hundred inhabitants under eminent domain. If it isn't, then the S'ona should be free to either work a deal or wipe out the Ba'ku to collect the radiation.

    Do both options suck for the Ba'ku? Yep, they sure do.
     
  4. Robert Maxwell

    Robert Maxwell Comfortably Numb Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2001
    Location:
    where it hurts
    You haven't picked anything apart. You've started out with your position that the good of the many outweighs the wishes of the few, and you have shaped your arguments around that. You've started with a foregone conclusion and then tried to work your way to justifying it. My approach is more legalistic, in which definitions matter, jurisdiction matters, and the Federation's own supposed values should be taken into account.

    It is "a planet within Federation space." It is absolutely not a member of the Federation. That Picard makes this distinction is apparently important. The Federation is not free to do as they please with the planet and its inhabitants, because it is not a "Federation planet." That is an entirely separate point from whether the Federation should protect the Ba'ku from the Son'a. The Federation may not want known Dominion allies poking around in their backyard, and they may not be keen on watching a massacre happen that they could've easily prevented. The Federation would have no legal obligation to protect people who aren't Federation members, but it'd still be kinda shitty for them to stand by and watch a massacre happen in their own territory.

    What they absolutely should not have done is get in bed with Son'a and try to surreptitiously move the Ba'ku in order to harvest the metaphasic radiation. Doing this to a group of people without their informed consent--indeed, without even warning them you are going to do it, and with intent to actively deceive them when you do it--is simply wrong.
     
  5. BillJ

    BillJ Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2001
    Location:
    alt.nerd.obsessive.pic
    The Federation Council is made up of 150 distinct cultures. How do we know that these aren't the values of some members? We know the Vulcans are coldly logical and that the Tellarites and Andorians are warrior cultures. Saying the Federation has one set of values is like saying all the disparate cultures on planet Earth have one set of values.

    This is where we do agree. I would've moved them but I would've informed them. :techman:
     
  6. Robert Maxwell

    Robert Maxwell Comfortably Numb Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2001
    Location:
    where it hurts
    There have to be some core values they agree on, otherwise how can they function as a single political unit?

    I would only have moved them with their permission, as well as adequate compensation. I'm not sure how you can put a price on clinical immortality, though.
     
  7. DalekJim

    DalekJim Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2009
    Location:
    Great Britain
    The best word to describe Insurrection with is "clunky". The plotting, characerisation and pacing is ridiculously clunky. Still, it isn't entirely without merit. Just a really misjudged, messy film.

    I don't think we've had a Star Trek film without a clunky script since Undiscovered Country. Though First Contact is a pretty good dumb action flick.

    I'd say that II, IV and VI are the only Star Trek films without significantly clunky scripts.
     
  8. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    in a figment of a mediocre mind's imagination

    I didn't realize that you were only claiming that the Federation had a "moral" claim to help the Baku, not a legal one. If that's the case, it's just silly. The Federation, with its "values," has been willing to let billions die for the Prime Directive. Why would their "values" dictate that they should help a small group of selfish villagers in a civil war over a planet that the Son'a have just as much claim to? Heck, PICARD himself calls it a "blood feud."
     
  9. Robert Maxwell

    Robert Maxwell Comfortably Numb Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2001
    Location:
    where it hurts
    I have said more than once that the Federation should protect the Ba'ku if the Ba'ku ask for help. Kind of hard for the Federation to do anything if they don't even know it's going on.

    Blood feud or not, standing by and watching a bunch of drug- and slave-trafficking bandits wipe out a colony of (apparently) defenseless people sounds like the kind of thing the Federation wouldn't generally turn a blind eye to--at least not within their own territory.
     
  10. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    in a figment of a mediocre mind's imagination

    I guess we disagree then. The Federation has stood by and watched a lot worse things happen, I see no reason why they'd want to get involved here, especially if they could benefit a lot more from a Son'a victory(with the particles) than they would from helping the Baku. Getting involved in what is essentially the very definition of a civil war in a way that leads to a DISADVANTAGE for the Federation(they make an outright enemy out of the Son'a, while gaining a much weaker pacifist, isolationist "ally," and they lose out on the particles)makes absolutely no sense from any perspective.
     
  11. Robert Maxwell

    Robert Maxwell Comfortably Numb Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2001
    Location:
    where it hurts
    It only makes no sense if you don't believe governments should stand by any principles.

    If the Federation wanted to do only what what sensible, well, for starters, they'd have nuked that pesky Bajoran wormhole once it became clear the Gamma Quadrant was occupied by a ruthless, expansionist force bent on conquering what was on the Alpha Quadrant side of the wormhole. Sometimes you make decisions based on their more far-reaching implications, rather than what looks to suit your own best interests right this second.

    That you think the Son'a are more worthwhile allies to the Federation is odd, to say the least. These are people who manufacture drugs for the Dominion, use outlawed subspace weapons, and conquered and enslaved two other species to serve them. If the Federation cares about its image at all, they wouldn't be caught dead trying to make allies out of such people.

    There may be no strategic advantage to being friendly with the Ba'ku, but at least the Ba'ku aren't complete bastards.
     
  12. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    in a figment of a mediocre mind's imagination

    you're reasoning as if siding with the Baku is by definition the ethical thing to do, and the only reason to side against them is for realpolitik reasons.


    I disagree-I think that it's more ethical to use the particles to help a vastly greater number of people, especially considering that the Baku did exactly the same thing to the Son'a that the Son'a were trying to do to the Baku, but for worse reasons.(the Son'a plan to help billions necessitated removing the Baku, but expulsion from the Baku village did NOT necessitate exiling the Son'a off the planet) Also, since the Baku aren't even from the planet.

    So arguing "well, the Federation would help if they wanted to do the right thing" is a non-starter for me. I don't believe stopping the removal of the Baku is the right thing.


    As for allies in war, you can't afford to only be allies with those with the highest ethical standards. The Romulans certainly aren't a democratic and progressive ally, and they enslave other groups as well.(like the Remans) I guess the Federation should dump them as allies at the earliest opportunity, right?
     
  13. Robert Maxwell

    Robert Maxwell Comfortably Numb Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2001
    Location:
    where it hurts
    Now you're getting it! ;)

    That's why the question becomes, "Does the Federation have the right to do what they please with the Ba'ku planet, the rings surrounding it, and the people on it?" The Ba'ku were there first. Homesteading is a pretty old legal concept, one that the Federation (presumably) understands and respects. That the planet is in Federation space shouldn't matter that much, since the Ba'ku were there before the Federation even existed. The Federation just deciding they can uproot the Ba'ku and take the planet's radiation without so much as a "by your leave" doesn't strike me as the action of a benevolent, democratic government. It is the behavior of a bully who is used to taking what he wants by force.

    Whether the Ba'ku are from that planet or not doesn't mean much. No one anywhere lives on the exact same land their ancestors did, stretching all the way back to the species' first sentient thought. People migrate, whether it's on the surface of a planet, or to another star system entirely. If you are the first to settle a place, you have a greater right to it than people who show up later saying they have some claim on it.

    The Ba'ku had every right to be there. So did the Son'a, for that matter, since they'd previously lived on the planet. Now, if they can't do so without trying to kill their Ba'ku relatives, that's a problem--one the Federation may or may not want to get involved with. Either way, the Federation has no business aiding and abetting the Son'a in this--particularly not if the Federation stands to benefit from it. That's just scummy.

    When you make alliances with shady scumbags, you know what you get someday? Blowback. Imagine the Federation helped the Son'a relocate the Ba'ku, made them all mortal, took the radiation, doomed the planet, and dumped the Ba'ku off somewhere else. I wouldn't be surprised if a disgruntled Ba'ku showed up on Earth a few years later to blow himself up in the Federation Council chamber. That's what happens when you team up with bullies and despots because it's politically expedient. The little people you step on get pissed and will come back to murder you for it someday.
     
  14. CorporalClegg

    CorporalClegg Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2001
    Location:
    Land of Enchantment
    He said it could save billions. He has no idea the thing will even work in the first place. "Billions" is in itself extremely vague and, in a Federation whose combined population probably exceeds a trillion, still only a small faction.

    So you're still left with deity by lottery. Not very enlightened.

    There is absolutely no reason to think a synthetic alternative to the medical application could not be found. "Replication" doesn't always mean "by replicator."

    And what if you were one of the 600? You've proven to be such an altruist.
     
  15. BillJ

    BillJ Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2001
    Location:
    alt.nerd.obsessive.pic
    No one likes getting the short end of the stick.

    But if the Ba'ku hadn't given the S'ona, who wanted to be explorers instead of farmers, the short end of the stick a century prior this likely would've never been an issue to begin with.
     
  16. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    in a figment of a mediocre mind's imagination

    well, future blowback is better than losing a war and ending up conquered and enslaved by the Dominion. You know what a famous alliance with a shady ally was in real life? The WWII alliance with the USSR. All things considered, better the alliance with the Soviets than all of the West conquered and enslaved by the Nazis. Your moral purity tests for allies during war would be a recipe for defeat. You have no power to safeguard ethical principles when you're enslaved or dead. Also, the Baku are pacifists. Pissing off pacifists doesn't have a lot of blowback potential. What are they going to do? Stage sit-ins, do a lot of marching, write strongly worded letters of protest to the Council?

    As for "should the Baku have been asked?" Absolutely, but that's a sign of how poorly written the movie is that it's not considered, or an example of the poor premise.(there's no right answer. If they say "yes," there's no movie. If they say "no," they look like selfish douchebags and the audience stops rooting for the supposed heroes.)


    So they don't get asked. But of course, the Baku knew what was going on. I think we can guess from their reaction to events and their attitude that their answer would have been "no." And then what? Do you just pack up and leave?
     
  17. Hartzilla2007

    Hartzilla2007 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2006
    Location:
    Star Trekkin Across the universe.
    Or worse the disgruntled Ba'ku talking about how the federation's safety is an illusion while crashing starships into San Francisco and trashing the freaking Enterprise while claiming to be better at everything than its captain.

    Or another worse thing that could happen the disgruntled Ba'ku implodes a federation planet with a black hole bomb.

    They gave the Son'a the short end of the stick for trying to take over the colony and it didn't sound like the nice democratic way of doing it considering the Son'a went around enslaving people after getting exiled.

    Hell for all we know the original plan was that the Ba'ku either expected the Son'a go off for a few decades get bored and then come back and apologize for the coup and everything goes back to normal or they just get used to being mortal and don't give a crap about their planet anymore.