Kirk v Trump

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by Pauln6, Dec 9, 2017.

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  1. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Not a political debate but more a philosophical one. Trump's decision to announce the recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital has got a lot of people quite frightened about what might come next, especially if it is at least partly inspired by the notion that gifting Jerusalem wholly to the Jews is one of the things said to bring about the end of days.

    I was struck by the very loose parallels with Kirk's approach in a Taste of Armageddon, where he threatens to rain destruction down on an entire planet for the benefit of a few hundred people, in order to push a political agenda imposed on him by politicians, and where he takes a step everyone else was so afraid to take that it was never even contemplated.

    So, was Kirk's gamble really that well thought out i.e. that the Ventikans (who he's never even met) have similar cultural values and will similarly want to avoid actual war or is it more likely that he will have sparked off mass suicides and the destruction of the infrastructure of both nations, hoping that this will give the Federation a way to embed itself and to influence the planet?

    I do raise an eyebrow sometimes when Kirk's gambles pay off. The most hilarious one was NuKirk trying to use the same tactics as Matt Decker and then taking the credit for the Spocks essentially saving the day.

    So is Kirk a master tactician or a lucky gambler?
     
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  2. Samuel

    Samuel Captain Captain

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    You can be both. That the Vendikarans had similar cultural values is easy to surmise because he knew that
    1) Vendikar was a former coloney of Eminar VII
    2) They had been at war for half a millennia so they apparently shared the same respect for the "rules" of this war that had been in play for so long.
     
  3. Push The Button

    Push The Button Commodore Commodore

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    Spock: Captain, you took a big chance.

    Kirk: Did I, Mister Spock? They've been killing three million people a year. It had been going on for five hundred years. An actual attack wouldn't have killed any more people than one of their computer attacks, but it would have ended their ability to make war. The fighting would have been over permanently.
     
  4. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yes but this statement contains within it a lot of assumptions. The USA is a former colony of the UK among others but there has been quite a lot of cultural and military divergence in 300 years. Plus if a real war destroyed infrastructure, the number of dead could indeed increase beyond 3 million when you add in starvation, disease, and those killed while trying to flee. Kirk's estimate was done on the back of a proverbial fag packet with minimal information. Reminds me of Team America!
     
  5. Vger23

    Vger23 Commodore Commodore

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    OHHHHH!!!! What FUN!!!!!!!!

    :barf:
     
  6. 1001001

    1001001 VERY STABLE GENIUS!!! Moderator

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    So....the title of this thread is very misleading, and this:

    Seems very unlikely.

    If the thread stay to Kirk's actions in A Taste of Armageddon, or his overall tactical skills, that's fine.

    Trump should stay out of it.

    Thanks.
     
  7. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yes, Trump's decision was the inspiration for my train of thought only. I was hoping to keep it focused on Kirk's alleged 'leap before you look' philosophy (as described by NuPike). And so far we seem to have managed :-P

    A Taste of Armageddon is interesting because there seems to be General Order that allows for the targeting of civilian targets, which I've always put down to sloppy writing.

    That aside Kirk's strategy is based entirely on assumptions of parallels between a nation he's just met and a nation he's never met!
     
  8. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Kirk's "leap before you look" philosophy was a creation of the Bennett movies. He seemed to have a great deal of reason behind his actions where "A Taste of Armageddon" is concerned. You might even say he was "logical". By keeping the Enterprise from submitting, he was creating a problem for the Eminians that there quota was going to be short. By ordering General Order 24, he gave Anan VII a ticking clock with few options.

    Does anyone notice the announcement that the Eminians are several thousand short of their quota? Seems like not every one was ready to be disintegrated. :o
     
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  9. alensatemybuick1

    alensatemybuick1 Commander Red Shirt

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    Here's my problem with discussions like this one - I have an interest in / opinions about political and religious matters, but they don't consume me to the point that I need to intercalate them into my other interests (be it Star Trek, classic cars, whatever). I consider it almost a sickness when people can't help but do that. There are plenty of other places on the net to foment about Trump (or whatever), and I don't forsee this thread as going well. There's a damned good reason why many BBSs discourage discussions about politics and religion.
     
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  10. Lord Garth

    Lord Garth Captain Captain

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    Yeah. I once thought about starting a thread here about Trump relating to a particular episode. Then I changed my mind. I thought to myself, "Yeaaah... I'm not gonna do that." Maybe in 2040.
     
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  11. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yes I rather like the way Kirk thinks through his options in early TOS. It's why Doomsday Machine is great and ST09 is very childish. Either the Eminians are very efficient with their suicide booths or, as you say, their was an element of the population willing to take a stand. No reason to suppose they had a mono-culture.

    It's funny that the only people talking about Trump are people saying they don't want to talk about Trump. It's only mildly relevant in that it was the inspiration for my train of thought. I was watching some UK and US pundits discuss whether his decision was the first bold step in a more complex plan to restart the peace process. They sort of fell about laughing and thought no but that it might happen accidentally and that made me think of a Taste of Armageddon. Kirk has no real plan beyond, if I do this, it will force them to rethink their strategy, with no guarantee of what their rethink might be. He has had barely any interaction, no socio-economic data, and even less information on the opposing side. It's a massive gamble.

    I suppose it would be a very dull episode for many if it focused more on those issues but I posited the notion that some episodes might work as two parters. Maybe this is one.
     
  12. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    It's a TV show fer Christ sake. It is supposed to be entertaining, not a thesis on interplanetary relations. I tend to think most (not all) folks that watch Star Trek, understand that its solutions are not solutions to real world problems.
     
  13. Spock's Barber

    Spock's Barber Commodore Commodore

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    How about Kirk/Lester versus Trump? :nyah:
     
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  14. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It's a TV show that relies heavily on allegorical stories so.... :-/
     
  15. Tenacity

    Tenacity Commodore Commodore

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    The American embassy to Turkey is located in the Turkish capital of Ankara, not in the former capital of Istanbul.

    Why?

    Because Turkey's capital is in Ankara.

    Israel's capital is in Jerusalem. This isn't some kind of "gifting." it's a simple recognition of reality.

    I did a fast google search, and it's not unknown for nations to move their capitals for various reasons, the embassies naturally follow the moves.
     
  16. Samuel

    Samuel Captain Captain

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    Anyone ever wondered if there actually is a General Order 24? Kirk knew they were going into a potentially hostile situation and its more than possible that "General Order 24" was a prearranged bluff with Scotty.

    When Scotty repeated back the threat to the Eminarans, the bridge crew looked shocked as in "You're really going to do this!!!". Something that wouldn't have been as likely if it was a well established General Order of Starfleet.

    Fans have too much of a habit of taking everything shown and said in Star Trek at face value.
     
  17. 1001001

    1001001 VERY STABLE GENIUS!!! Moderator

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    And this relates to Kirk how exactly?
     
  18. Push The Button

    Push The Button Commodore Commodore

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    GO24, I'm guessing, was meant for a planet that was contaminated with a virulent pathogen, or harboring some other threat that could not be allowed to spread to another planet or planets (think of the pancakes in Operation Annihilate! or Gary Mitchell in WNMHGB). Kirk threatening to use it against Eminiar was just thinking outside the box.
     
  19. Commishsleer

    Commishsleer Commodore Commodore

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    Kirk's gambles and strategies are to me a mix of the clever and as they say in Harry Potter just "plain dumb luck".

    But Kirk creates his own luck. He pushes his team out of their comfort zone into producing miracles. When Kirk was facing the option of killing a million Denevans he refused to accept Spock's advice and demanded another solution. He's demanded cures to impossible diseases out of McCoy, pushed the engines beyond Scotty's endurance, his bluffs with Corbomite.
    He leads by example, risking his own life for his crew, for his ship for the Federation. And he has a never ending belief in his ability to achieve miracles - Spock's Brain for example - anyone else would have given up.
    If Trump's relying on his team for solutions - I doubt he has the same talent to fall back on.
    Also can't see Trump leading by example. He has an agenda to make things good for his rich mates (and maybe therefore for the rest of the country). Kirk (and all the other Series Captain) are your traditional heroes. I see Trump more as one of those Admirals who tells Kirk to make good with pre-Warp cultures who have a good supply of dilithium even though it violates the Prime Directive. And I'm not sure you'd want a President who was a hero. Someone who might rob from the rich and give to the poor.

    In real-life I doubt Kirk could have luck enough to make it out of all of those close situations we saw in 79 episodes.
     
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  20. Pauln6

    Pauln6 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    That's an interesting option, although my problem is that Scotty doesn't balk at all and doesn't feel the need to seek clarification from Starfleet considering the circumstances and their original orders.

    Full disclosure, I think the concept for the episode is great sci fi. Generally, my only problems with the episode are:

    1. Tamura instead of Rand.
    2. General Order 24.

    I think Kirk's approach is novel and ambitious but I have to admit that it looks like a massive gamble. I do think he has some evidence of the Eminians to support his approach but the writers are deliberately vague about the source of the conflict (because it's irrelevant to the core allegory). However, this means that Kirk has nothing to support the notion that the Ventikans have a similar culture.
     
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