DS9: Force and Motion by Jeffrey Lang blurb

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by DS9forever, Nov 23, 2015.

  1. DS9forever

    DS9forever Commodore Commodore

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    From the S&S catalogue:

    In 2367, Captain Benjamin Maxwell of the starship Phoenix ordered the destruction of a Cardassian warship and a supply vessel, killing more than six hundred crew members. Maxwell believed that the Cardassians were arming for a new attack on the Federation, and though history eventually proved he was probably correct, the Federation had no choice but to court martial and incarcerate him.

    Almost twenty years have passed, and now Maxwell is a free man, working as a maintenance engineer on the private science station Robert Hooke, home to crackpots, fringe researchers, and, possibly, something much darker and deadlier. Maxwell’s former crewmate, Chief Miles O’Brien, and O’Brien’s colleague, Lieutenant Commander Nog, have come for a visit. Unfortunately, history has proven that whenever O’Brien and Nog leave Deep Space 9 together, unpredictable forces are set into motion…
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Is this an e-novella?
     
  3. DS9forever

    DS9forever Commodore Commodore

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  4. Enterprise1701

    Enterprise1701 Commodore Commodore

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  5. Elias Vaughn

    Elias Vaughn Captain Captain

    Twenty years for six hundred deaths?

    Huh.
     
  6. Idran

    Idran Commodore Premium Member

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    I would say keep in mind that in the Federation it seems like criminal justice is pretty well wholly about rehabilitation rather than punishment and sentencing would be more along the lines of "until we have judged you fit to re-enter society" regardless of the level of your crime, but given what that blurb implies I'm not so sure Maxwell is rehabilitated.

    But yeah, for example, the maximum allowable pat sentence in Norway for any crime is 21 years, with judges applying five-year extensions as needed following the completion of the initial sentence if the criminal is judged still unfit to re-enter society.
     
  7. Unionized Elf

    Unionized Elf Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I don't see anything in the blurb to indicate anything either way about Maxwell. Yes, he's now working and living among lowlifes, but that makes sense. Regardless if he's rehabilitated or not, there probably aren't many who'd want anything to do with someone of his infamous reputation.

    Actually, although I was looking forward to this novel based on Jeffrey Lang's initial description of it being an O'Brien/Nog buddy adventure, the addition of Maxwell really has me hooked now. It'll be interesting to see how the years have changed him, especially since from his perspective, the Dominion War proves he was right.
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I'd hope that the Federation would've overcome that kind of kneejerk prejudice against ex-cons along with all the other prejudices. Logically, a society that emphasizes rehabilitation and reform over punishment would be a society that's actually willing to forgive people for their pasts.


    Well, he had a valid point about the Cardassians, but he certainly wasn't right to go around launching unprovoked and unsanctioned attacks on them. Doing the wrong thing for the right reasons is still wrong.
     
  9. Seventh Day of Christmas

    Seventh Day of Christmas Spreading the Gift of Justice Moderator

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    I agree. Maxwell is a great choice for a followup.
     
  10. Unionized Elf

    Unionized Elf Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I was basing it on the fact a dishonourable discharge from the military can basically haunt you for the rest of your life, and I would assume Maxwell's discharge from Starfleet wasn't honourable. Presumably Maxwell wants to be out in space, but he can't serve in Starfleet, and I can't imagine many other space services eagerly embracing an ex-Starfleet captain who slaughtered ships that were no match for his own. A ship who doesn't care about his background might be the only option.

    It's not unlike Tom Paris, who despite doing his time was still shunned by members of Voyager's crew, like Commander Cavit or the human doctor, and as we saw in Non Sequitor would have ended up a barfly had he not been on Voyager.


    Oh, I agree what he did was wrong. And even though the Federation did eventually go to war with the Cardassians again, that doesn't make what he did justified. I just doubt he really regrets his actions, he probably felt vindicated when he heard news of the Dominion War. Which could perhaps suggest he isn't really rehabilitated after all.
     
  11. Idran

    Idran Commodore Premium Member

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    That's a fair point, I shouldn't assume just based on that blurb.
     
  12. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    In our time and culture, yes. That's my point. The Federation is supposed to be more enlightened, less judgmental.


    Okay, fair point. It doesn't always succeed at living up to its ideals.
     
  13. Ríu ríu chíu

    Ríu ríu chíu Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Oh yes, the "more evolved sensibility". The same one that gave us TNG Season 1. Because we've seen how well that works. :lol:
     
  14. Idran

    Idran Commodore Premium Member

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    Who was dishonorably discharged in TNG S1? I don't understand what you mean by this.
     
  15. Ríu ríu chíu

    Ríu ríu chíu Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ^ Just speaking in a more general sense. That's the time period when Gene's utopian evolved-humanity "nobody should ever have personal conflicts" was really taking hold.

    As for Maxwell: What the hell do people expect Starfleet to do, hire him back and give him a ship again? Obviously he's never going to get that. If Maxwell still wants to work in space, he's going to have to take whatever job he can find. So here he is.
     
  16. rahullak

    rahullak Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Even in the Federation, I'd say rehabilitation does not allow for full freedom once someone's released. It's possible his release would have conditions attached: No having any command of your own; No playing a role higher than bridge officer or Chief Engineer.
    The man has actually committed genocide. So if he is given the death penalty or life imprisonment in our time, rehabilitation in the Federation would have riders, I think.
     
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  17. Ríu ríu chíu

    Ríu ríu chíu Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Maxwell had better watch his back, because I'm sure the Cardassians will come after him for what he's done. I wouldn't expect THEM to simply shrug it off.
     
  18. Idran

    Idran Commodore Premium Member

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    All that would be Starfleet, not the Federation; rehabilitation shouldn't ever have riders, because if you need riders then you're not rehabilitated yet and should just be kept in and put through rehabilitative processes until you are. There might be a stage where you're eased back into normal life under restrictions, but that would just be the continuation of a sentence with a potential for eventual end should you continue to prove yourself a changed person. Saying that someone should ever just be hit with a guaranteed-permanent situation like that is still a punishment-oriented perspective of criminal justice, that this person is bad and deserves to be hurt because he is bad.

    And while he did commit mass murder, he didn't commit genocide which is a much worse crime; that might seem like legalistic or semantic quibbling, but the word "genocide" doesn't deserve to be diminished.
     
  19. Ríu ríu chíu

    Ríu ríu chíu Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    But what is a normal life, under Maxwell's circumstances?

    Like I just said, you don't seriously think he deserves to have his Starfleet career back, do you?
     
  20. Idran

    Idran Commodore Premium Member

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    I think that there should be the potential that eventually, given substantial proof that he is a different person, he should be able to re-enter Starfleet in some capacity, yes. Not a guaranteed promise that he will be allowed back into Starfleet, but there should at least be the possibility, however slim. And the legitimate possibility, not a hope dangled forever out of reach. It might be a tremendously difficult path, but it shouldn't be an impossible one.

    Any institutionalized consequence that is guaranteed from the very beginning to have no potential of ever being lifted is a punishment-oriented consequence, not a rehabilitation-oriented one, as such a consequence means there's less encouragement to become a better person; nothing will ever change it, after all, so it's just a weight dragging the person down rather than a reason for them to strive to be better.