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Josh - Sun, Feb 1, 2015, 4:36pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

Re: Americans not having the "patience" for (soccer) football.

I trust anyone suggesting that has never gone to a baseball game and had to explain why it's actually interesting. As Homer Simpsons observed, without beer, he'd never noticed how boring the game is.
msw188 - Sun, Feb 1, 2015, 4:23pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

Jokes aside, I will respond to:
"they are not a form of artistic expression the way a good TV show or film can be."

"Spectator sports really are the distillation of the human tendency to put undue importance on competition that has no productive end result."

I think there is some truth to both these statements, but some oversimplification as well. At the highest levels of sports, I will claim that there are moments of beauty and artistry. The best players in any sport will have those moments on the ice (or the field, I guess) where their physical skills and intelligence seem so fine-tuned to the task at hand that they are able to make something seemingly magical happen, something that feels unique and impossible to either preconceive or replicate. This isn't so different from our usual notions about art (especially music). We cannot quite quantify what it is about the piece (or the play on the ice) that so moves us, but somehow we feel that something special, maybe even something genius, was achieved.

What separates sport is that the beauty is at least partially derived from the fierce competition of the opponent.
msw188 - Sun, Feb 1, 2015, 3:56pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

Haha, where did all this come from? I'll just be a jerk and list all the boring things about all sports in the US:
baseball - everything... I will say it feels pretty unique though
basketball - basically everything, can't hit people, players can call timeout midplay...?
football - too much stopping and starting, feels custom-designed for television replay and midday naps
soccer - too much ground is covered too slowly, might be better if the field were a bit more compact and had boards to lower the amount of stops due to 'out of bounds'... also would be improved by more body blows, substitutions midplay (to allow higher frequency of 'all-out' physical play), and being played on ice, preferably with sticks and a puck, making it faster without losing the thrill and beauty of scoring a relatively rare goal

I think that covers all boring sports with major coverage in the US. :)
Dave in NC - Sun, Feb 1, 2015, 3:32pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

Jammer said:

Sports (even soccer!) are no different -- and I'd go even further and say that sports are even less valid as something you can defend outside of personal preference because they are not a form of artistic expression the way a good TV show or film can be.

My two cents:

Absolutely 100% correct!

Besides giving bored kids & gymrats something productive to do, the ancillary societal benefits of spectator sports is pretty laughable.

I do understand the mind's need for useless drivel. After all, I have seen Voyager's Threshold three times.

There is literally nothing deep or profound about these activities themselves. Yes, there might be some interesting "human interest" stories there for the press to exploit, but you could achieve that end with a incisive profile of the first stranger you pass on the sidewalk.

Spectator sports really are the distillation of the human tendency to put undue importance on competition that has no productive end result.
Pointlessly throwing/kicking a ball around year after year doesn't say anything about the human condition, unless you're a pessimistic existentialist.
Mark - Sun, Feb 1, 2015, 2:28pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

They're arrogant idiots if they say things like its a "socialist flop sport" that is "non-contact" and hate it when they don't really know the sport that well or at least as well as they think they do.

I've also known people who didn't like Breaking Bad or some other show because they watched an episode or two and couldn't get into it. They then sometimes act like its a pile of garbage and don't understand how anybody could like it after only watching a few episodes. That to me is being a bit of an arrogant idiot. Yes that includes if you've never even seen the show and act like its a waste of your time. How do you know?

You think if someone decided to try watching star trek but only caught episodes like this one and a few other ones that were mediocre and decided that all of star trek must stink, without watching any of the other series or episodes, do you think they're opinion is valid? People can have an opinion if they want to. To turn around and say something isn't very good or is boring when they've only seen bits and pieces of it really is to me not legitimate. Going based off face value and first impressions judgments is not legitimate. How many times have people had to get to know someone they didn't like, or kept with a show they didn't care for at first only to end up really liking the person or the show?

I'll also never understand how people can call soccer boring considering how constant stop and go football is. They just did an analysis of the Super Bowl the other day. 4 hours long and its only going to be around 27-28 minutes of actual action going on. That's a little ridiculous. A lot of the time football plays consist of 2-3 yard runs or 10-12 yard pass plays. The big exciting plays are usually a couple a game maybe.
Shannon - Sun, Feb 1, 2015, 1:49pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S2: Pen Pals

The senior staff debate is what Star Trek is all about, and probably something Roddenberry opposed because he thought "conflict" would be a thing of the past by the 24th century, which is absurd. This debate showed that conflict can still exist, but it can be resolved through reasoned arguments, and that once the captain makes his/her decision, the debate is over... David, your comment is irrational, and demonstrates an ignorant attitude about the Prime Directive. History has proven that despite our best intentions, interfering in another society tends to have disastrous consequences (the old cliche "the road to hell is paved with good intentions"). During the debate I found myself on the fence, not sure which way to go, which shows how brilliant the writing was. It's not our place to interfere with the laws of nature, but then again, could we just sit back and watch an entire species get wiped out if we have the ability to prevent it? Tought one, but ultimately Picard made the right decision in my opinion... Great episode!
Jammer - Sun, Feb 1, 2015, 12:28pm (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

Name a TV show that is outside your preferred area of general interest or preferred genre. (For a lot of people, these would be sci-fi shows. For people frequenting this site, it might be something else.)

Now imagine that the rest of the world watched this show, or at least a whole lot of people. Maybe it's "NCIS" or something else on CBS that has tons of viewers.

Now, you may never be interested in watching this show, ever, even if it might be hugely popular, or even if it's critically acclaimed. You may even have watched an episode or two and concluded that it is just not for you. Are you wrong for not wanting to watch it? Are all the people who have never seen "The Wire" or "Breaking Bad" wrong and/or arrogant idiots for not being interested and thinking it's a waste of their time?

I'm going to go out on a limb and say no. I might even grant them their bias against the show based on what it is about and their lack of interest in that particular thing.

Sports (even soccer!) are no different -- and I'd go even further and say that sports are even less valid as something you can defend outside of personal preference because they are not a form of artistic expression the way a good TV show or film can be.
CPUFP - Sun, Feb 1, 2015, 10:33am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S4: Future Imperfect

I actually found Barush's real appearance quite endearing. My girlfriend and me were going "Aw, what a cute little alien boy, all alone on his planet", when we saw it. The way he holds his hands in an "X" has since entered our everyday behavior at home and never fails to elicit a laugh.

This was of course another case of "Main character makes a new friend, who is then never heard of again". Maybe Riker put him in the same desolate part of the ship where Worf had stored that boy from "The Bonding", after telling him that he would now be part of his family. Keith R.A. DeCandido wrote in his review of this episode on TOR.com that Barush's fate is further explored in one of the EU novels, where he moves to Earth to become head of the UFP's displaced persons office.

Anyway, the biggest virtue of this episode for me is how much it tells us about Riker. Barush's technology can create what Riker would consider a perfect (for him) future, and it's interesting to see what this includes.

In "The Best of Both Worlds 1", Picard had made Riker aware of his options: staying first officer on Starfleet's flagship, or taking command of his own ship on the outskirts of the Federation. As we see in Barush's creation, Riker wants both. He can move upwards in his career (which is what everyone expects of him and which was his main drive during the beginning of the series) and become captain, without having to leave all the things he likes about his current life: the Enterprise and his colleagues (who are his only friends and surrogate family). He moves out of Picard's shadow and out of the on-again/off-again relationship with Troi when they both leave for Starfleet Command, but still maintains a friendship with them. The Klingon-Federation relations are getting tighter, with at least one more Klingon serving on the Enterprise (who lasciviously roams the ship's corridor, thereby covering both Riker's interests in Klingon culture and hot chicks). He starts a family and has a son who can continue his legacy, but his wife dies, leaving him free to return to his old dating behavior.

The most interesting thing for me was the role of Minuet, though. This is Riker's ideal woman, the woman for whom he still holds the warmest feelings, and which he sees as most fitting to start a family with. What do we know about her from her previous appearance in season 1's "11001001"? We know that the Binars had just refitted the holodeck and had created the Minuet character to divert Riker and Picard while they were using the ship for other tasks, so it's understandable that she was quite the sensation in comparison to other holodeck programs. But that's hardly enough to make her a candidate for "ideal woman". What is it that made her so unforgettable for Riker? For starters, she had the right looks (Riker had her look changed a few times before settling with what he liked). She liked the same kind of jazz music as him. She showed interest in what he had to say. She flirted with him. And that's about it. Riker's idea of the perfect woman is a pretty girl who finds him attractive and likes what he likes. Oh, and wait: She also flirted with Picard. Let's not go too far into what this means for Riker's idea of a perfect mate...

In the end, the whole episode paints a rather sad picture of Riker, who usually serves as TNG's quasi-Kirk, an adventurous, lady-killing, charismatic leader. In Barush's materialization of Riker's wishes and dreams, he appears as deeply insecure and afraid of life-changing decisions. In both love and work, he wants to have his cake and eat it too: stay in his comfortable place on the Enterprise and rise to captain, start a family and still be a bachelor. And the saddest thing is that the TNG character with the most active (and most promiscuous) sex life cannot commit to a real person, but is still hooked to a holodeck creation with whom he spent one afternoon three years ago, and whose character was defined by the variables "pretty, likes jazz, flirts with Riker".

Riker has a lot of good episodes under his belt, but I always felt that he did not get that much of a character arc when compared to Data, Worf or even Wesley Crusher. But this episode certainly gives us the deepest insight into his mind and shows how much of a tragic figure lies under his usual sunny-boy demeanor.
CPUFP - Sun, Feb 1, 2015, 5:08am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S5: Ensign Ro

What I like most about this episode is that it shows how the UFP's non-interference policy and general emphasis on diplomacy comes with a price.

The question the story poses is: Are the possible benefits from this policy worth that price? Picard and Ro give opposing answers on this question.

For Ro, the Federation's non-interference and respect for Cardassian borders is what led to the displacement of her people, who are now living in poverty, scattered across other planets in refugee camps. She and the Bajoran terrorist leader have a good point there: The Federation is essentially turning its eyes away from a grave injustice, hides behind the formalities of treaties and even presents its own refusal to help as a sign of enlightenment. The non-interference policy, intended out of respect for other cultures, here serves to legitimate the destruction of one culture by another.

Picard can not take this stance, though. He has to look at the bigger picture, which makes him seem cold and unempathic at first. For him, the treaty with the Cardassian Empire, which ensured both sides' recognition of each other's legitimacy, is the necessary basis for helping the Bajorans through diplomacy - because every other form of help and the disregard for the Empire's national interests would have led to war.

The Federation prides itself in representing truth and justice, even if it often violates its own virtues (they seem to be especially unpopular among the ranks of Starfleet admirals). In previous episodes like "Justice" and "The Measure of a Man", Picard has shown himself to be a champion of these virtues, but as we know from "The Wounded", he takes a more pragmatic approach when defending truth and justice would lead to the death of innocents.

By TNG season 5, the Federation's state of peace is fragile. The UFP has just recovered from the Borg's attack and Wolf 359, the Romulan Empire is getting increasingly aggressive after a long period of absence, and the Klingon Empire has just come out of a civil war where one powerful faction (whose exponents are still around) was aiming at ending the alliance with the UFP and siding with the Romulans instead. On top of that, "The Wounded" told us that until a few years ago, the UFP was still at war with the Cardassian Empire (which makes Ro's accusation of the UFP as "innocent bystanders" rather unfair).

I think that Picard understands clearly how wrong the Cardassians' treatment of the Bajorans is, and he has a lot of empathy for them. But he is also wise enough to know that starting another war with the Cardassians would not help the Bajorans, but instead risk the lives of thousands of Federation citizens (and be a welcome opportunity for the Romulans to make a move on the Federation while it is engaged in a conflict with the Cardassians). So by discussing these two views of the conflict, the episode arrives at the conclusion that Picard is right.

This is what I value most about TNG. I'd certainly call the series propaganda. I don't use the term in a derogatory sense here, but simply as an objective description of what this show does: openly advocating specific political ideas. The problem with propagandistic works of art is that they usually fail at convincing anyone of their positions. Depending on the recipient, they usually only work as either entertainment or as a confirmation of ideas that the recipient already had. For example, I do not agree with the political message of "Iron Man 2", but I still enjoy the film as entertainment because it has an engaging story, an amusing protagonist and good action sequences. On the other hand, I can not imagine anybody enjoying a boring and self-righteous work like Ayn Rand's "Atlas Shrugged", unless they completely agreed with its message (which is basically the same as in Iron Man 2) and did not care for characterization or story, as long as they can have their views confirmed without any challenge (sorry for the rant, but I really hate this book).

What sets TNG apart from these other propagandistic works of art is that it (usually) does not simply state its message, but discusses it, and (in its better episodes) the other party of the discussion is not simply a strawman villain, but has valid points themselves. This is why the show is so "talky", and why the conference room meetings are such an integral part of the show. Here, we are shown how hard it is to arrive at Picard's conclusion that the Bajorans' cause has to be helped by diplomacy, but that from the Federation's perspective there really is no alternative to it. We are also shown that for the Bajorans, this is a cold comfort, and that their terrorist faction has merits to their position, too.

That's what makes TNG great propaganda: Even if you don't agree with its messages, you will often (granted, there are more than enough exceptions, like the scolding of Dr. Marr in "Silicon Avatar") find other positions presented as valid in their own right and not simply turned down as obviously false. Apart from the interesting science fiction concepts, engaging stories and relatable (well, some of them...) characters, I think that this is what makes TNG popular even with people who do not agree with its main messages.
david b - Sun, Feb 1, 2015, 4:24am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S7: Journey's End

Just a quick note on this. I'm still watching the series in order for the first time and quite honestly I found this the dumbest episode out of all seven seasons. That mainly attributed to the reasons that William B eloquently lays out earlier in this thread.

American Indians… really? Where are their huge bingo parlor/tobacco shoppes that headline washed up country singers? Yes… I know… but that's where the American Indian society is at now. I'm supposed to believe they'll regress back to 1840 in the next 400 years… on a different planet after traveling at warp speed to get there? Ugh… couldn't get pass that to begin with and the episode then somehow gets even worse.

As others have said, the whole "these 100 (or so) humans will cause a horrible war" should have been dealt with from the beginning exactly as it was at the end. "So… yeah, Cardissian dudes… this planet is yours now. Nothing really on it but a couple of hundred people in huts your technology could build in one day before lunch break. They want to stay. They'll be no problem. Cool?"

And then… if this is the last of Wesley ... wow. What a flat out horrible way to destroy a perfectly competent character. Yes, I know he wasn't loved by most Trekkies, but I actually liked the thought of an awkward, outcast genius teenager (my only problem with the Wesley character until this episode was that they gave him the helm of the Star Fleet flag ship before he was even a cadet. That was a hard pill to swallow). But really… vision quests? Daddy says "don't follow me"? Oh… and by the way, I'm nearly God-like? Where the hell did THAT come from?!?!?!

Sorry… I've loved this series so far. SO much good stuff in ST:TNG (I was in Germany in the USAF when it originally aired, so never saw it before). But the writers of THIS horrible, horrible episode should never be trusted with anything canonical ever again.

Oh… and I see that Jammer has given some .5-1 star reviews earlier in this season. But I felt all of those had much more merit than this one.
Dusty - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 4:55pm (USA Central)
Re: VOY S6: The Voyager Conspiracy

Excuse the typos...stuck -> stick, minded -> mended, and "what the tractor beam in the picture really was."
Dusty - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 4:50pm (USA Central)
Re: VOY S6: The Voyager Conspiracy

Very interesting, an original idea, impressive use of Continuity that I wish we saw more of on Voyager...but still, what the hell?

The episode had an intriguing first half, with Seven concocting a farfetched but not totally implausible theory about Starfleet directing Janeway to establish a military presence in the Delta Quadrant. As Stephen points out, Chakotay has been betrayed before and I think it's in character for him to be just a little suspicious--enough to ask B'Elanna to delay the mission until he can gather more information.

Everything is going fine so far. It's in the next scene, where Seven then summons Janeway to the lab and tells her a totally different conspiracy theory implicating the Maquis--that this thing completely DERAILS. All of a sudden it's a story about Seven's cortical implant malfunctioning and how her drive to make order out of chaos has her coming up with illogical theories. It's all downhill from there.

What they should have done, IMO, is keep it simple and stuck to the Starfleet theory, have Chaoktay and B'Elanna get suspicious to the point of confronting Janeway, and then sort out the whole thing by convincing Seven she had made a very human mistake: information overload = desperate attempt to make order from chaos = making increasingly illogical connections between disparate facts on less and less evidence. No "cortical implant" technobabble necessary. And above all, they should have thought to explain where the tractor beam in the picture really was and where it came from. (How do you fail to tie up a loose end like that??)

By needlessly complicating the story, they force another contrived resolution and the rift between Chakotay and Janeway is minded before it even happens. It would be almost comical if it didn't represent such a lost opportunity. Two stars for the first half, zero for the second.
$G - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 4:16pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S4: The Wounded

There are a lot of really good comments here. The only thing I want to add is this:

There's a really good moment between Macet and Picard while watching the tactical overlay of the Phoenix vs. the Card warship and "supply" freighter.

Macet, shocked, asks Picard if his sensors are so advanced they can identify Card registry codes (or something) this far away. Picard admits that, yes, in fact they can. Watch the little pang of defeat on Stewart's face, admitting to a former enemy about this small shift in the balance of power.

Macet is a) probably worried about being busted then and there, but also b) understandably dismayed about Fed technology. Irrelevant of the former, Picard full well knows the implications of the Fed's ID technology. What's worse is that he previously treated it so casually, so benignly, and probably realizes why the Feds aren't entirely blameless in Cardassian paranoia. Hell, look at what Maxwell did, probably using that technology to aid him. Stewart is an absolute pro, wow.

4 stars for me. Excellent episode, maybe the best from S4 so far (narrowly beating "Reunion"). Maybe even better than S3's own cold war gem, "The Defector" too.
William B - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 12:15pm (USA Central)
Re: TNG S6: Rightful Heir

@Cleopaddera: I generally agree; in TNG at least (I haven't rewatched DS9 lately), I interpret Gowron as decent for the most part. The "problem" is that Gowron acknowledges political necessities in a way that Worf largely doesn't. I like the interpretation of Gowron as Worf's shadow.

I think the worst thing Gowron does in TNG is the implicit threat he offers K'Ehleyr in "Reunion." That is bad, and a sign that Gowron uses intimidation covertly, rather than (say) overt shows of strength. In "Rightful Heir," Gowron is somewhat positioned as a heavy as a skeptic, but...well, he's RIGHT about Kahless not literally being true, and his position is thus validated. I keep meaning to rewatch this episode in particular to suss out Worf's views a little more clearly actually.

I guess the difference between Worf's commitment to honour and Gowron's pragmatism comes about in instances such as Gowron's refusal to grant Worf's family name credibility unless it can benefit him, e.g. However, this puts Gowron at a lower level of "corruption" than K'mpec. More "Tacking" spoilers: Worf finds it difficult to openly acknowledge his personal ambition. I also rather agree about Worf being fractured in "Tacking" -- killing the shadow/ogre "father" to install the "good father" into a job that Martok may not even want can be interpreted as Worf acting out his own issue. Leadership can ONLY fall on people who don't want it, which is why Worf thrusts it onto Martok rather than himself, thus absolving Martok and himself of accusations of self-interest, at least on the surface. Except that Martok is symbolic of the Klingon that Worf wants himself to be, etc.; eventually Martok will have to do something to acknowledge political realities, and then Worf will break with him or grow up. Note that this isn't me saying that Gowron's behaviour in "When It Rains" is just acknowledging political realities, which it isn't, but ironically it's kind of the opposite -- following GLORY to its extremes, the way Worf follows an occasionally narrow conception of HONOUR to its extremes.

That said, Worf gives the Klingon death yell to Gowron when he dies, and there is some respect there. It's not like with Duras. Gowron is being selfish, myopic and insane, but I think that Worf acknowledges that Gowron is not *deliberately* endangering the empire so much as failing to let reason in. On that note, I do think it's worth noting that trying to steal the glory and win the Dominion battle actually has some potential benefits; if it works, not only would it solidify Gowron's personal hold on power, but it also would create a situation in which the Federation and even Romulans are deeply indebted to the Klingon Empire, and also would give the Klingon Empire the spoils of war, which are considerable. It's a foolish gamble to make, but IF IT WORKS it's a more ethical way of using the war to gain power and influence in the quadrant than what the Federation is doing with Section 31 and planning for Federation/Romulan conflicts e.g.
Latex Zebra - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 11:17am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

Interestingly enough there is a game starting soon. Manchester City vs Chelsea.

There are 26 broadcasters there and there is an estimated global audience of 650m who will watch.

This is just a league game, no cups or anything involved. That is pretty crazy. Especially as 15 years ago most people outside of England would barely know those teams.
Cleopaddera - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 11:04am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S6: Rightful Heir

Could people please provide examples of Gowron acting like a jerk, being dishonorable (before Tacking into the Wind), complete bastard, etc. I have been watching Netflix this past month (medical issues) and I just don't see it.

Everyone points to his rewriting history as an example of corruption. It was a matter of survival. No leader of any country is going to state that a foreign power was responsible for their rise. That's insane, and a death wish.

I sometimes wonder if Gowron functioning as Worf's shadow hasn't set him up to be the depository of negative projection from the audience also, and not just Worf.

And no, Gowron would not intentionally start losing any war to eliminate a rival. I think one problem I carry is that I played Star Trek: Klingon where you get to know Gowron better than you do just watching the shows. Since this storyline was created by the same folks to create the show, I was of the impression that it was canon (Events occurred after Way of the Warrior). So, I was quite shocked by events in When it Rains and Tacking. The fact that there was no lead up to him going insane, and that appears to be what happened, it feels highly contrived. The fact that Worf kills his Shadow is bad news for Worf. He will remain fractured the rest of his life.

I didn't care for these events at the time they first aired but watching episode right after episode really makes it clear that whatever happened to Gowron, it happened off screen. Foul!

Also, Gowron did not kill K'Mpec. It is obvious from the show and script and Ron Moore said he didn't. I do agree that he is insecure. He was never able to build enough support. I can't help but to wonder if he ever stopped to think about the "few rewards and no glory" that the chancellorship offered.

In Rightful Heir, I was astonished with Worf's demanding attitude that things will be his way or there will be another Klingon Civil War.
Latex Zebra - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 9:33am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...

Oh Robert you just threw yourself on that giant wiggly worm on the end of that hook.

I was just seeing who would bite. I know you weren't being nasty.

It's just a name, though to me it will always be football. Look at Australian Rules Football. The only thing they got right is Australian as they play it with their hands and there don't actually seem to be any rules.

I feel sorry for my Brother as he has moved to the states to try and educate you yanks ;) on the ways of real football, I mean soccer. Teach kids at the moment but he has said the parents are getting more into it on the sidelines.
We're both scared that you guys are going to really get into it. Given the size of America if everyone started liking soccer then the rest of the World is doomed. You'll dominate for years.

You guys stick to BasketBall and American Football please.

Oh and yes the episode was awful. Sports discussion will always be better.
CPUFP - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 7:11am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S4: Half a Life

This episode also had me thinking about the Lwaxana character.

I usually find her quite entertaining. This is mainly due to the way Majel Barrett plays her, which makes even sub-standard plots like "Manhunt" or "Ménage à Troi" enjoyable. Barrett should really have been given a bigger role!

But in the first half of this episode, I was extremely annoyed by her. Flirting aggressively with a distinguished representative of a planet whose population usually avoids contact to other peoples? Disrupting a meeting for a picnic on the engineering console? I thought that Betazed's society was so hopelessly caught up in its aristocratic decadence that with the right pedigree, even a complete moron who is devoid of any diplomatic skill can become ambassador to the UFP.

During the second half though, I thought about the issue some more and got a different picture of Lwaxana. It's obvious that telepathic/empathic powers are an advantage in all professions where you have to negotiate, since you can sense what the other party is feeling and thinking, regardless of what they are saying explicitly. This was explored with Devinoni Ral in "The Price".

It's also logical that in a society where such powers are the norm, negotiations would be very different, since the other party can sense the same things about you. There would be two options to deal with this:
a) You leave diplomatic double-talk and ambiguity aside, put your cards on the table and openly confront the conflicts at hand.
b) You intentionally twist your own thoughts in order to make them harder to read for the other party. If you're only dealing with an empath and not a telepath, you could use techniques like thinking of pleasant experiences or you could use mood-altering drugs so that they could not sense your true feelings.

Lwaxana apparently relies on option a). In all her dealings, be it professionally or privately, she's usually completely open about her intentions and bluntly states her opinion about anything (much to the chagrin of her daughter). But this does not mean that she is oblivious to the effect of her actions on others. Actually, I think that she often used this behavior intentionally on non-telepathic/empathic persons in order to throw them off guard, since they are not used to such behavior, especially from a high-ranking diplomat. I think that she often does this to "test" the other person, in that she puts them in a somewhat extreme social situation and watches how they react. As a full telepath, she can also read the other person's cognitive response to her actions and see how it corresponds to their explicit response in actions and words.

We also know that her apparently un-diplomatic behavior is not a sign of stupidity, since Lwaxana can be pretty manipulative if it serves her interests, like she did with the Ferengi in "Ménage à Troi" or when she invited Picard for dinner in "Manhunt".

So in the end, this episode made me appreciate Lwaxana's character much more, since what on the surface seems like the actions of an oblivious buffoon is actually a pretty smart method for quickly getting a profile of people's thoughts and behavior - something which should definetely come in handy when working as an ambassador.
CPUFP - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 6:12am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S4: Half a Life

William B and Robert:
Thank you for your thoughts.

I think that maybe they just started developing these powers long after they already had created a spoken language. Since the powers don't seem to be distributed equally among the Betazoids (ranging from empathy to full telepathy including all three types Robert mentioned), it would make sense that they shouldn't rely exclusively on this form of communication.
zzybaloobah - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 3:54am (USA Central)
Re: BSG S2: Resistance

Yeah, Boomer is a tragic figure -- or at least I want to believe she is. The human Boomer is a tragic figure, but what's going on under the skin? Isn't that Boomer as well? If she's obeying the voices in her head -- they're her voices.
We only see the human side of her -- but there's clearly a Cylon side underneath, that, with few exceptions, is in charge.

Tigh blew a real opportunity to actually learn something about the Cylons. He went in all "bad cop" -- I think Sharon would have responded much better to some "good cop".

And Starbuck can play pro-level pyramid. Give me a break, is there nothing Superwoman can't do?

zzybaloobah - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 3:22am (USA Central)
Re: BSG S2: Valley of Darkness

The Cylon Centurions -- lights and sound effects -- are reworked versions of the original BSG Cylons -- which predate KITT....
The original Cylons had regular guns (or rather, energy weapons), not built-in armament.

Dimpy - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 2:51am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S2: Peak Performance

I want to add to my statement:

Kolrami walked away, so he did not win.
Data states "In the strictest sense, I did not win"

Therefore Kolrami and Data did not lose either, hence a DRAW or TIE.

Then Data says "I busted him up".
This statement is only to appease the crowd. Data did not "bust him up" he simply cheated.

A human can do this. Imagine I'm playing chess with a grandmaster. Most likely - I would lose. But, if I walked away from the board after the first move, they may say I lose by default.

However, by walking away, I did not lose because I claim I was never checkmated.

Kolrami = Sore Player
Data = Cheater

P.S. - If - in the strictest sense Data did not win, Data is claiming he sorta won.

P.S.S. - If the Borg appeared outside, Data would have to leave the game. Kolrami = Winner
Dimpy - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 2:30am (USA Central)
Re: TNG S2: Peak Performance

Personally, I think the game was a tie, the celebration was stupid.

If you play chess, on the hard setting, against a computer, the way to always tie is turn of the machine?

So troll guy tells Worf to turn off Data with the switch on his body.

Data loses?

Dimpy - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 2:19am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S2: Cardassians


Sisko ruins kids life.

The real resolution is joint custody. Spend time with both sets of parents.
Mark - Sat, Jan 31, 2015, 12:43am (USA Central)
Re: DS9 S5: Let He Who Is Without Sin...


I think that's what a lot of people don't get about soccer. The very quick and intricate passing and movement that goes on, along with the high skill level is what keeps people watching. It's also very competitive and intense, and when a goal goes in, its through great buildup and great skill.

The fact is though that you're never going to convince people to watch something that they have already made up their mind about. It goes along with everything else in America really. Take things at face value and run with it and then act like your opinion of something that you only really know bits and pieces about is a valid one.
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