Q Who? - What were Q's Motives?

Discussion in 'The Next Generation' started by Danoz, Jun 16, 2008.

?

Which "view" is correct?

  1. Picard's view - Right thing for the Wrong reason

    11 vote(s)
    35.5%
  2. Guinan's view - Prematurely forced an unnecessary encounter

    4 vote(s)
    12.9%
  3. Additional view - Q was doing the best thing for the Federation

    16 vote(s)
    51.6%
  1. Danoz

    Danoz Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I know we've discussed this several times, but I'm interested in seeing a poll breakdown of how people feel about his motives in this episode. It's really a fascinating episode that has led to a lot of speculation about Guinan's identity and powers, the nature of the Q and the evolution (as well as discontinuity) of the nature of the Borg.

    Mysterious Items:

    1. As mentioned by a recent poster: Guinan's stance seems to suggest some kind of defensive capability against Q. Q also seems weary of her and refers to her as an "imp." They also mention an encounter from several century ago, and Guinan refers to other members of the continuum being "almost respectable."

    2. The Borg's later assimilation/interest in organic material is not mentioned anywhere in the episode. Q says they have no "leader," (a notion altered by the creation of the "Borg Queen."

    My interest in this thread, is more with Q's intentions.

    Guinan seems to suggest that Q is a chaotic and immoral creature, and that he prematurely introduced the Federation to the Borg for virtually no other reason than to cause trouble.

    Picard suggests that Q has done the "right thing for the wrong reasons." That while he motives may have been to cause trouble or "shake things up," knocking the federation out of their "complacency" may have actually been in the best interest of the Federation.

    There seem to be other options not presented by Guinan or Picard. It's quite possible, actually (given the nature of Q in later episodes) that his action (while presented in a rather sensational way) was ultimately in the best interest of the federation by design. When Riker gets angry with Picard about the loss of several crewmates during their forced encounter, Q uses the "bloody nose" metaphor to tell them that space is dangerous and that they need to be better prepared for it.

    Forgive the simplicity, but I'm going to provide only three motives. Feel free to add a 4th or 5th in your reply if you feel it's necessary.

    1. Picard's view: Q, in his trouble making, inadvertently did the best thing for the Federation-- though this was not necessarily his intention.

    2. Guinan's view: Q, a menace, prematurely forced an encounter that shouldn't have occurred for centuries-- at a time when the Federation may have been prepared.

    3. Additional opinions: Q, though a Loki-like figure in his presentation, was acting in the best interest of humanity by knocking them out of their complacency.
     
  2. USS Excelsior

    USS Excelsior Commodore Commodore

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    I would say option #1, with the additional motive of being smug about it too.
     
  3. erastus25

    erastus25 Commodore Commodore

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    I think he actually intended to help the Federation, and he knew it. The Borg were already establishing a presence in the AQ (see: The Neutral Zone) and Q realized that without some advanced warning Starfleet would be toast. So he gave them that warning.
     
  4. RobertScorpio

    RobertScorpio Pariah

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    I think Q did the right thing for the right reason. If he can see into the future, and I think he can, then he saw the Dominion War not too far in the future. So his motives not only helped with future dealings with the Borg, but also prepared Starfleet for other galactic threats as well..

    Rob
    Scorpio
     
  5. Kirkunit

    Kirkunit Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I'm not really sure what you're getting at, since both Picard's & Guinan's views are correct -- from their respective points of view. They can also both be true, without negating each other. And, isn't option 3 really restating option 1?

    I think it's pretty clear that Q's motive is to show Picard that he could be a useful member of the crew, even if he had to stir up a hornet's nest to do it.
     
  6. Danoz

    Danoz Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think Picard suggests that Q's actions were inadvertently in humanity's best interest. Option 3 suggests that "helping" them was no accidental, nor was it necessarily for the "wrong reasons" (beyond mere gloating rights).
     
  7. RobertScorpio

    RobertScorpio Pariah

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    This is where I don't understand Q. If Q can see the future, then he already knew that Picard wasn't going to let him join the crew. So this would suggest that Q can not see the future or you into this whole "GOD" knows everything already so..why?..

    Q's joining the Q, and being denied, was Q's intent all along..I think. He did it so as to prepare the Feds, not to join the crew..IMO..

    Rob
    Scorpio
     
  8. matthunter

    matthunter Vice Admiral Admiral

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    If Q is indeed omniscient, then he was already aware that Picard was capable of passing his test in All Good Things. Since that indicates to the Q that humanity are potentially on an evolutionary track that will result in them becoming equals to the Continuum, Q may have had a vested interest in giving them a slight helping hand - after all, the Borg aren't likely to evolve much further than they already have, humanity very well might.
     
  9. Danoz

    Danoz Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think it's clear, however, that the Q exist in a linear continuum (whether part of our time-line or not). It makes sense to me that he would engage Picard in a linear way of action/reaction. Even the wormhole aliens from DS9 interact with humans over longitudinal points in time.
     
  10. Holdfast

    Holdfast Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I think Q was having a bit of fun, but with a kernel of good intentions. Very Puck-ish, if you like.
     
  11. Pensive

    Pensive Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I think Q did the right thing for the right reason. Picard needed the entire humble pie, and Q gave them a leg up in dealing with the threat of the Borg.
     
  12. loldrey

    loldrey Commander Red Shirt

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    If I were Q, I'd have a lot of fun messing with Picard.. he gets so flustered, it's bound to be entertaining, even though he knows Picard isn't going to let him have his way.. that's probably why it's so fun.
     
  13. Smiley

    Smiley Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I voted that the first option because I don't think he has knowledge of the future, and he is a troublemaker. However, it could just as easily be the third option if he's just going by likely possibilities. The novel Q & A posits a reason for Q's actions with the end goal being the safety of the universe. That's self-serving in its own way, but it has beneficial side effects, too.
     
  14. blueziggy

    blueziggy Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    i vote for the option:

    Q did it because the writers couldnt find a better way to introduce a powerful, scary enemy.
     
  15. DanCPA

    DanCPA Admiral Admiral

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    Well, I think Q did the right thing for the wrong reason... and frankly that reason is his own greed and amusement. Think of it like this, how much fun could the Q really have with civilizations if the Borg assimilate the entire Milky Way? So, they give Starfleet a kick in the butt to get them to defeat the Borg...

    I also assume that Q is how Voyager was always repaired every week with limitless shuttles :D
     
  16. RaymondJames

    RaymondJames Captain Captain

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    personally I feel is was neithe rof these options/choices. I feel Q did it for pure entertainment, The federation/Starfleet was a"super power" going aroun dlike they can take on anything, solve any problem and are the top. Q gave them a slap in the face saying look idiots your not un beatable, there are things out there you don't know how to handle.

    I think of it as Picard being a child who for some reason though he couldn't be burned by fire, and up until that point the heat was tolerable but Q put Picard's hand right into the fire (borg encounter) and it hurt like hell, a wake up call at its most shocking.
     
  17. shatastrophic

    shatastrophic Commander Red Shirt

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    I tend to agree with this. I think up until this point in the series the crew, mainly Picard, were able to get past him. Because of this Picard and Co said his assistance is not required, he wanted to show them it was. This was something he could do and force a win for himself from Picard. But I also agree with Q's knowledge of the future. Maybe thats why he is always nonchalant about everything, he's been there and done that.
     
  18. CaptainStoner

    CaptainStoner Knuckle-dragging TNZ Denizen Admiral

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    I think that Q indulges in partial truths where his own omniscience is concerned. :) Although he is able to predict and manipulate humans, he doesn't really know what they're going to do. I think his fascination with Picard has as much to do with Picard's overall maturity - there are buttons Q can push, but overall Picard is the most resistant to him.
    Other advanced beings have indicated humanity's potentials, but in Q's case there is a real perplexment. Q draw their energy from chaos and impulse and almost just a pure evolvement of the id. I think his motives in dealing with Picard and Co. always were to study that completely alien balance that evolved humans occasionally attain. In a way Q's mission was the same as the Enterprise, he is almost an inversion of the whole concept. One man instead of thousands, self interest being the rule, interfering and involving oneself being the cheif way of attaining experiences and information.
    So I went with the Guinan choice. Though it may have worked out well for humanity. The Borgs' constant assimilation could have easily given them a total battle dominance which they nearly had anyway, had they encountered humanity in a few hundred years, it would be a roll of the dice whether humanity or the Borg would have advanced relatively further.
     
  19. Red Ranger

    Red Ranger Admiral Admiral

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    I voted for option 3, although I think there's a bit of option 2 there, and as some have said, Q did it for his own amusement, too. However, I think it amuses the Q to help humanity advance as part of a long-range plan whose real intentions only they know.

    You see, by forcing the Federation to face the Borg then rather than later, they helped the Federation eventually learn how to combat a superior enemy in the form of the Borg. And the fact that they developed other advanced defenses to deal with the Borg means they could take advantage of these new defenses when it came time to fight the Dominion, as well. Think of the Defiant and its quantum torpedoes, which helped it ace Dominion fighter ships.

    I see Q as a mischievious, almost sadistic instructor, like a Marine Corps drill instructor or like Professor Kingsfield from The Paper Chase -- filled with good intentions but not caring to sugarcoat their brand of instruction.

    Remember, Q did say in All Good Things that the "trial never ends," and that the Q never reached a verdict in their first appearance. So the forced encounter with the Borg was part of this long trial.

    Red Ranger
     
  20. archeryguy1701

    archeryguy1701 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think he did the right thing for the wrong reason. Starfleet was all nice and comfortable, and Picard did have the air of, "We will be fine without your magical powers! We can handle ourselves!". I think this sort of arrogance pissed Q off, and he wanted to show them that they weren't the biggest bullies on the block.
     

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