Roddenberry's Worst Ideas

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by ZapBrannigan, Mar 16, 2013.

  1. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I don't know about that.

    What about Chekov and his pride in his Russian heritage?

    Picard and his French?

    Sisko identifies as a Black man, O'Brien as Irish, Chakotay has his "Indian" beliefs, etc.

    the Star Trek future for Humans doesn't seem to be a universal culture one for Humans.
     
  2. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    Chekov was mainly used as a joke, Picard seems more like a French guy who is into British stuff (Shakespeare, black tea) to me and Chakotay's Indian episodes sucked badly. There was this religious nonsense with the protection animal or whatever and Janeway the scientist went along with it? This was indeed political correctness at its worst.
    But in general I agree, you are right and I am wrong, Trek does indeed often play the identity politics game.
     
  3. scotpens

    scotpens Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Not at all ironic if you accept the premise of the TOS ep "This Side of Paradise."
    Humans have an inherent need to face challenges and overcome obstacles, to work for what they receive and and be fairly rewarded for their efforts. Call it the Puritan work ethic or whatever you like, but getting all your needs for free, even if it's possible, just doesn't feel right.
     
  4. shatastrophic

    shatastrophic Commander Red Shirt

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  5. Nightdiamond

    Nightdiamond Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I usually agree with this idea, but the problem is, Jake says he doesn't have money because he's human. Not because he's a teenager or out of money at the moment.

    He then is shown as being completely helpless to buy anything that involved money. Nog OTOH, could easily do it.

    Apparently Jake was just going to (Starfleet) replicators for all his personal needs for free.

    It suggests humans are simply living off replicators absolutely free, though they do have jobs that they do , but only to better humanity, not for pay.

    This is the premise then; humans don't use money among themselves--no currency.

    A person wants to 'buy' a piece of property from a friend. Humans don't use money. Picard stated this clearly on two separate occasions.

    How do humans exchange property when they dont use money?
     
  6. Ríu ríu chíu

    Ríu ríu chíu Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ^ They do what Beverly did in TNG's pilot. They put it on their account. All transfers are electronic and automatic. After a long enough period of time doing that, they stop thinking of it as money.
     
  7. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Regardless of any "identity politics," Star Trek had absolutely no problem depicting various characters as heterosexual, and considerable problem openly showing otherwise.

    How do Humans buy, sell and charge purchases, if they (supposedly) don't use money?


    :)
     
  8. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    So what? The only Germans that we see on the show are nazis and I don't whine about it and pretend that Trek is somehow anti-German when it clearly isn't.
    Contemporary identity politics aka "I only care for my group" is oblivious to the bigger picture, to universal emancipation. MLK did not merely fight for the rights of Black people but also for working people, for people in Vietnam and so on. This is true progressive politics, caring about more than your personal shit. Trek has clearly always implied universal emancipation so could we stop these insinuations that the franchise is somehow homophobe? If you wanna be consistent you'd have to also claim that it is e.g. anti-Inuit, anti-Chinese, anti-deaf, anti-wheelchair and so on. Obviously this is lunatic.
     
  9. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    amen :techman:


    the problem with the so-called "progressive left" these days has been it's tendency to fracture its coalitions on stupid lines of identity politics.
     
  10. Anji

    Anji Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    How do you be progressive when you work for a network that owns 50 percent or more of the series??? You can only do what you want to do up to a certain point.
     
  11. horatio83

    horatio83 Commodore Commodore

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    Indeed. Identity politics is basically some kind of self-undermining. You need solidarity, unity and discipline to get shit done.

    Apart from this intra-left problem we do of course have to acknowledge that not every member of a discriminated minority is on the left. If I remember correctly T'Girl is a libertarian right-winger so she naturally only cares for her personal LGBT interests. And while I also think that the next Trek series should feature a non-heterosexual character I don't want it to be ideologically influenced by such kind of identity politics aka group egoism. Its underlying notion has to be that this is a future for everybody, not that group XYZ can cry hoorah because they are in Trek now.

    And at the risk of pissing off some people, especially gay right-wingers like T'Girl, in a world where a Thatcherite assholes like Cameron are fine with gay marriage we might wanna reconsider this focus upon non-economic issues. Sure, they have been neglected by the Old Left but nowadays we have reached the other extreme.
    What applies for the real world also applies for Trek. It should focus more on continuing to be a world without economic exploitation and so on than on showing the end of discrimination of minorities. The discrimination of the majority is the bigger issue.
     
  12. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Funny how it always comes down to a lame rationalization for why Star Trek doesn't show much human diversity.
     
  13. yousirname

    yousirname Commander Red Shirt

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    Language is pretty fluid. 'Villain' originally referred to a low-level agricultural worker. 'Cheap' used to be a noun. We still talk about 'dialing' a number, even though it's an extraordinary rarity to see a rotary phone nowadays.

    All of which is to say that the verb 'to sell' could easily persist in a non-monetary economy.
     
  14. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    well, there's also the issue that sci-fi often has trouble coming up with what pop culture and diversity might MEAN so far in the future, especially with how quickly things change now.
     
  15. Nightdiamond

    Nightdiamond Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    That would have been fine, except for later on when they started adding some serious statements that humans don't use money anymore.

    Still even now, electronic transfers are still called money.

    I gathered that Starfleet officers get paid in credits and that is specifically used as currency off planet.

    If that's the case, then the credits aren't used on earth--and humans on earth don't get paid in any currency.

    Its usually the lack of clear examples of what 24th century human culture is like that starts these debates.

    We do get 'humanity has overcome all their prejudices" statements from Trek, but that is a bit vague.

    Remember the episode where Beverly Crusher rejected her former lover because he now possessed a female body.

    Trek basically says that 100% of humanity are open minded, non prejudiced and accepting. So you wonder what was behind her rejection.

    Can 24th century humans have preferences and ethnic identities, and yet still be open minded?

    Who knows, if we don't get specific inside look at the society.
     
  16. Third Nacelle

    Third Nacelle Captain Captain

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    Is it that humans don't use money, or The Federation doesn't use money? I have always (despite lack of anything definitive stated onscreen) thought of the UFP as the national-level government - the level of goverment that mints currency. The name itself suggests the UFP is a federal republic. It would not make sense for a nation to have money while one of its states/provinces did not.

    Just because people aren't paid for their work (Jake's writing) does not mean that money/credits are not distributed some other way. Perhaps the UFP issues everyone a certain amount of credits as welfare, or perhaps work FOR the Federation is not paid, but private work is.
     
  17. robau

    robau Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I think Starfleet officials in particular are given suitable credit for trading wherever currency is required. That's how Crusher got cloth, Scotty got his "pay", and how they are all able to go to bars. Bars have to operate with currency by law to put some sort of limit on drinking:p
     
  18. Nightdiamond

    Nightdiamond Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I think it's Humans don't use money on earth. The Federation seems to use money for dealing with other cultures, and Starfleet officers may be paid since they are in space and are likely to deal with other cultures that use money.

    However the average human relies only on earth replicators and technology for their needs (according to this theory).

    This is what brought up the idea that humans might be financially isolated on earth.

    They have all their needs fulfilled at no cost, BUT--they have to stay on earth to enjoy it. If they leave they will be completely resource-less, unless they are in a Federation or Starfleet facility.

    Jake lived on a Starfleet base, so he had access to their free replicators, but the moment he tried any transaction that didn't involve currency, he was helpless, since by his own words, as a human he didn't carry money.

    I'm not into the "Federation is communist stuff", but it's an interesting way at looking at Trek society, that makes it both creepy and fascinating.
     
  19. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Or maybe all of Jake's replicator use (and other purchases) were automatically billed to daddy's account. Jake being the minor child and dependant of Ben Sisko.


    :)
     
  20. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    And Ben hit the ceiling when he saw the charges for all the downloads from I-Tunes.
     
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