why is warp travel one of the main things for Federation membership?

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by Tetragrammaton Invictus, Aug 10, 2018 at 3:31 AM.

  1. Tetragrammaton Invictus

    Tetragrammaton Invictus I like the new Doctor Premium Member

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    Why is warp travel one of the gold standards of entry into the Federation?

    What if that said planet was a warmongering species that just lived to kill and they had just discovered warp travel on top of whatever space capability they had, would the Federation still notice them?

    Actually on that it's a thing that really bugs me with Star Trek that they always look for that before considering the other aspects of a planet and if they haven't got that they don't even bother with them, or just study them hoping one day they'll advance to the required level of tech to gain Federation entry.

    I don't know which series this was but I remember one of the series, could have been TNG or Voyager but they found a planet that had learnt how to use anti matter but hadn't yet learn't how to use warp travel, they had a few satellites in orbit of their world but their spaceflight capabilities were limited to things around their planet. Just that bugs me in that harnessing anti matter is no small thing and if you are able to harness that to make power why couldn't you be part of the Federation? It just bugs me that everyone harps on about "warp travel."

    As a counter to that what if worlds DO know about other worlds and alien life through observation of the universe, and sending out probes or other items, but they just haven't reached that level of technology to actually make the trip beyond their own solar system yet. Would they be shunned? I feel this is unfair, surely some kind of provisional membership could be allowed surely?

    I mean if you have managed to fill your home solar system with people but the limit stopping you from going beyond is tech why shun your world?
     
  2. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Not for Federation membership.

    Warp travel is the threshold for being introduced to the interplanetary community, because you're going to meet aliens soon anyway. It's the point where the noninterference principle ceases to apply.
     
  3. Mojochi

    Mojochi Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Because they are now an active presence intergalactically

    Here's an interesting point though. I don't think warp capability IS in itself a prerequisite. It's simply a gauge for knowing when to make 1st contact with a planet, & the most common way races tend to take on a role in the vaster intergalactic community. If however, a species like the Cytherians, from The Nth Degree, who've made 1st contact some other way, chose to ask to join the UFP, & it is found out they don't have any kind of warp capability, because they essentially don't need it, I'd think the UFP might still take them, so long as they fit other criteria as an intergalactic presence.

    If you want to get REALLY abstract with it. I don't even think it's out of the question for a race to join the United Federation of Planets, even when they don't have a PLANET! Consider a species like The Calamarain from Deja Q. They exist in some energy form, or maybe it's a species that lives in some nebulous field etc.... They don't travel space via technological light speed travel. Maybe it's naturally occurring etc... Why couldn't they get a place at the symbolic table too?
    They'd have to recognize & address them as a presence, yes. That doesn't mean they'd have to offer membership
    They study them (Like the Mintokans) because they respect them. They don't get involved with them necessarily, because it could inadvertently effect their trajectory, in a prime directive violation kind of way
    Because they are not yet an active presence intergalactically. This isn't about the technological advance of warp capability. It's about the broadening of literal horizons. They are now venturing into a vaster community, & THAT'S the reason you need to make contact, & maybe offer membership. Until then, they are just a snow globe, that you have to be careful you don't shake
    Well, kind of... It's the point where the prohibition on relations can be lifted. They still don't approve of interference
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018 at 4:57 AM
  4. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    True.

    The non interfence policy was cited as the reason that the Federation could not get involved in the Klingon civil war because it was a purely internal matter.

    The Federation couldn't step in 7 untill it was proved that Duras was being propped up by the Romulans, and it was not an internal matter as completely as advertised.
     
  5. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    That goes well with the fact of it never having been stated to be a prerequisite...

    The closest we get is actually the most recent case of primitive natives vs. our advanced Federation heroes: "Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum".

    This is basically the one and only time in all of Star Trek where the Prime Directive is associated with local warp abilities; generally it is associated with ignorance of the interstellar community. Which is the same thing, of course, but this is never explicated in dialogue.

    Warp capability ceases to matter once the natives are "contaminated" by knowledge of aliens, at which point first contact protocol kicks in. Which apparently is a rare occurrence, for our heroes to have to engage in dialogue about it here. The normal procedure would apparently be that first contact is initiated on UFP terms, without any "well beyond that" complications of premature exposure.

    The DSC dialogue also explicates that noninterference is required even when communications are established, and sort of outlines what noninterference means: respect of sovereignty. The rest of Star Trek comes on top of that, and agrees with it for the most part.

    UFP membership can then follow, either on standard terms or the "well beyond that" terms: Bajor had lots of access to warp, but none of it was explicitly credited as native, and much of it was implied to have been introduced by force, by an occupying force at that. Nobody asked for Bajoran patents on warp coils afterwards.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
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  6. Tetragrammaton Invictus

    Tetragrammaton Invictus I like the new Doctor Premium Member

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    So even if you know of aliens have colonized your home solar system and are just waiting for some breakthrough that will put you outside your solar system the Federation won't even talk to you? Do I have that right?
     
  7. Captain Rob

    Captain Rob Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    From TOS the Stratos cloud dwellers' planet was a member fo the Federation. They didn't have any apparent interstellar capability but did regular commerce with those peoples that did.
     
  8. grendelsbayne

    grendelsbayne Commodore Commodore

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    There's a difference between theoretically warp capable and practically warp capable. You don't have to build your own fleet to be considered advanced enough to interact with the whole community. You just have to have advanced far enough to understand that the community exists and that you could try to build a ship and go meet it if you wanted to.
     
  9. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I don't see why you would need to know how to build a warpship in order to be aware of space aliens.

    Usually space aliens come to you. And only the Feds ever come in secrecy, it seems...

    TOS features quite a few cultures that can be contacted even though they clearly can't even build steam engines. Whether TOS features member cultures that can't build warp, we cannot readily tell. But most of the shows feature member cultures that have no use for warp, native or imported, and are quite happy to sit on or above the surface of their single planet.

    Just the opposite, apparently. If you know of aliens, you are free game (that is, entitled to PD protection as a sovereign entity with a voice, not as a scientific curiosity behind a glass), regardless of whether you have invented warp, purchased warp, refused warp, or never heard of warp.

    Your specific scenario is played out in TNG "Justice": our heroes help the UFP colonize the neighborhood, then freely visit a culture that clearly does no spaceflight whatsoever (an individual is amazed by the experience when it is provided) but just as clearly is thoroughly familiar with the idea of space aliens (they have an orbital overlord who may keep them informed) and has perhaps hosted some before already, although that's not quite clear. Avoiding of exposure or contact is never considered, while respect of sovereignty is a major plot point.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  10. grendelsbayne

    grendelsbayne Commodore Commodore

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    I expect unless a culture is dominated by an exploitative empire or has religious/philosophical issues with space travel or technology, they would likely become warp capable soon after contact, anyway. If not through new research trying to catch up, then through acquiring alien technology. Many species may not necessarily go the expense of standing fleets, but likely do understand the technology more or less, regardless.
     
  11. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    There may be different values of "aquire" to consider there, too. Bajor seemed to be purchasing the services of outside operators, such as Kasidy Yates. Their military had some warpships of their own, perhaps Cardassian surplus (as the triangle design is also seen in Cardassian convoys in "Rules of Engagement" and abandoning of equipment during the hasty withdrawal would appear a likely method of acquisition), but freighters may have been largely of foreign origin and ownership. They provided no less a warp access for Bajor's goods and people...

    What is implicit in all this is that warp is easier to invent than subspace communications. If it were possible to build a listening device before a warp engine, this would be the leading method of getting corrupted by interstellar knowledge. Yet it basically never happens. It isn't just because responsible Starfleet officers (other than Data) refuse to communicate, because no eavesdropping ever takes place, either. Which is interesting enough in the treknological sense.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  12. Mage

    Mage Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think the biggest motivation was, that the Federation believed that for a species to achieve warp, it would need to be a unified planet, considering the resources required to achieve. That no singular state could achieve it. Or something like that.

    Which is stupid for two reasons....
    First off, ol' Zeffie himself did in his backyard shed.
    Second off, war is the biggest motivator behind technological breakthrough. Let's say one nationstate actually achieved building a colony on a different planet in the solarsystem. The Russians, for example. Ol' Donnie T would certanly make sure he would have firststrike capability and develop a drive system to get to that planet first with some tactical nukes. Russia would try and go beyond, and vice verse and vice versa and etc untill someone make the final breakthrough. And there you go.
     
  13. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    No, planetary unity was a membership requirement, not a contact requirement, in "Attached" and the like. It thus had little or nothing to do with warp drive.

    Does the UFP try and enlist every culture as a member as soon as they achieve warp? ST:INS would suggest otherwise, as giving even a protectorate status to those short folks was considered premature because they "only achieved warp a year ago".

    Timo Saloniemi
     
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  14. Mage

    Mage Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Never said it was a contact requirement. I said the reasoning was, that if a species had developed warp, the Feds asumed they had also reached planetary unity and thus achieved a level of maturity as a species to interact with other races.
     
  15. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    As long as this isn't actually stated as a reason, I think we are better off assuming the banal and the pragmatic: that warp makes folks capable of contact, not mature enough for contact.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  16. Mage

    Mage Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I disagree. The episode First Contact made it clear to me anyway, that because they (forgot species name) were about to achieve warp, they were being studied to see how far along their society as a whole was. And Picard made it clear he felt that their species, despite being technologically advanced, were not yet ready for the impact of alien life.
     
  17. grendelsbayne

    grendelsbayne Commodore Commodore

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    But I don't think such a thing has ever been stated. And we've been deliberately shown plenty of non-unified planets who are still allowed to deal with the Federation.
     
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  18. Mage

    Mage Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Good point. Certainly. I should google where I heard about warp being a sign a unified society according to the UFP. I admit, I'm beginning to doubt myself now.
     
  19. Shawnster

    Shawnster Commodore Commodore

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    In this case absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Stratos may be a Federation member world. It may be a on aligned friendly port of call. There may be political reasons why Stratos could not directly ship the needed zenite.

    Or the entire population could have been exclusively I Stratos and the mines directly below. Such an outpost may not have had cargo ships or any spacecraft large enough for such a job
     
  20. Laura Cynthia Chambers

    Laura Cynthia Chambers Commodore Commodore

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    That raises an interesting question. If aliens on a slow moving sleeper ship (no warp drive) finally landed on a(n area of), say a moon of Jupiter, that had no Human presence and began peacefully colonizing it, would Starfleet be prohibited from making contact with them, assuming these aliens hadn't detected or tried to contact us yet?