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Peter G.
Tue, Aug 15, 2017, 9:44am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: 'Til Death Do Us Part

@ Quarkissnyder,

The prophets had already told Sisko not to get married, Kasidy knew that, and insisted they should be ignored and that she wanted to marry Sisko. To go to her again with a prophet objection would be to disrespect her position on this. She doesn't need to be asked again, it would just come across as hedging and asking her to reconsider. Are you married? When someone is potentially going to marry you, you don't want to hear the reasons why they're not sure they want to go through it with. What you're suggesting would be cruel to Kasidy and not at all helpful. Her position by this point was clear as crystal. The only issue is whether Sisko himself was willing to go through with it or not. He was, and that was for love of Kasidy. It's *because* of his respect and love for her that he wouldn't bring this to her attention. She didn't need to know, she didn't want to know, and it would have upset her. It would have been egregious, to be frank, to interrupt a wedding to speak of it.
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Peter G.
Mon, Aug 14, 2017, 1:52pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S5: The Masterpiece Society

@ Robert,

There are certainly many cases to be made not only for abortion in the context you describe (I'm happy it turned out ok) but in others. In context of your scenario I see selective abortion as being rather similar to genetic engineering, since in both cases the idea is to prevent births that don't conform to some standard. The standard can be quite rational and humane, but nevertheless while your standard may be reasonable the question remains that if you should be allowed to make the choice based on this standard then why shouldn't others be allowed to make it based on a standard of their choice? You may think that a birth defect would give the new human an undesirable life, but what if someone else thinks that being born with an IQ under, say, 90, would lead to an undesirable life? How do you tell them your standard is correct and theirs is wrong? What if someone believes that being born female at all is an undesirable life? And then of course someone may feel that any life is undesirable and abort in all cases. There is an entire spectrum of reasons people might have for 'selectively' thinking a birth shouldn't happen, and so again my point is that at the end of the day selective abortion would become identical to elective abortion since the standard for selection would be completely arbitrary.

I guess we could envision strict government regulation based on...genetic data? Like a fetus with gene X can be aborted but not gene Y, and this rule would be enforced with no exceptions? But then elective abortion is eliminated altogether. So in the end when individuals want the freedom to choose whether to abort you end up with an inability to prevent eugenics, and when individuals want there to be a ban on unlimited eugenics then would end up losing elective abortion. So I think you're stuck with getting both or neither, which why I'm left wondering what the heck the Federation does to prevent eugenics in the breeding sense. It's not as bad as genetic engineering...but it still feels pretty bad to me.
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Peter G.
Mon, Aug 14, 2017, 1:40pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Paradise Lost

Jason R,

"McCarthy's purge was mostly just skapegoating sympathizers rather than rooting out real spies and probably had little to do with their activities. "

I know this is a common assumption made, but it's actually a topic I'd like to read up on at some point because I'm skeptical that this was entirely the case. Back then it wasn't just a few isolated radicals making everyone scared, I think there was a legitimate communist movement in the U.S. going back to the 20's that was giving real support to Russia, and that's not even getting into the issue of spies (which we know that historically really were all over the place). I agree with you that it's a compelling story anyhow to suppose that the Founders were willing to let fear alone do the job, but for all that I have a sort of sympathy for Leyton's position, if not for his methods. I'd like to think that he wasn't merely a fascistic idiot but had real concerns that were justified by things he knew but couldn't say. The issue for me in the episode is the decision to compromise freedom for security, a topic that would hit the U.S. right in the kisser scarcely 5 years after this prophetic episode aired. It's one of the reasons I like it so much. So while you're right that fake-O'Brien did hint that they were really doing nothing, all the same I like to give Leyton a little bit of credit and assume they were actually doing nasty things that needed stopping. After all, based on fake-O'Brien's tone it feels like he was more interested in gloating than in letting Sisko in on a secret, which to me means he was probably playing down how much they really needed to do to get Earth to that point. Never show your work if you want the result to look effortless.

"Incidentally, where did you get the idea that the overthrow of Central Command was due to changeling influence?"

For what it's worth I tend to side with Gowron on this one. It's too pat that they have a Martok Changeling, and magically right after learning "we're everywhere" from The Adversary the Cardassian government falls? Yeah right. I doubt very much the Martok Changeling thought to himself "Well isn't that lucky, I can push for an invasion!" I give the Founders more credit than that, so yes, it's a bit of an assumption that they caused the coup. But then again they straight-up tell Garak later this season that his people are going to be decimated for what the Obsidian Order did, and I have full faith that this plan involved undermining the Cardassian government to make it weak, causing the Klingons to bring them to their knees, and while at their weakest the Dominion coming to the rescue with Dukat in tow. I've always seen the plan in this way, and the whole thing makes far less sense if we consider the coup to be coincidental. How did the Founders thing they'd (a) take power, and (b) punish the Cardassians otherwise? They pretty much knew they had no future allying with the Klingons (impossible to command) or Federation (impossible to corrupt), and the Romulans were too untrustworthy. The Cardassians were always their target, probably from as far back as The Search.
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Peter G.
Mon, Aug 14, 2017, 12:34pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Paradise Lost

@ Chrome,

Well, this does beg the question of what the Changelings were *actually doing* on Earth here. If we take it at face value that Leyton was unilaterally behind everything, including the false flag attack at the beginning, then does that mean that when fake-O'Brien was teasing Sisko he was just pulling his leg and the Changelings really weren't doing anything destructive at that time? Or did the Changelings somehow trick Leyton into thinking he had to do all this?

Or was the explosion at the beginning legitimately a Changeling attack, and just served as a timely window in which Leyton could enact his plan? It just seems that if he'd been planning for a coup d'etat for a long time already that even if the explosion was an attack it's almost irrelevant to the issue that Leyton was going to do this either way.

I guess if I had to complain about one thing here it would be that it's not clear at all to what extent the Founders were behind the near-coup on Earth. Since they were also responsible for the coup on Cardassia it does seem logical to suppose that somehow they put Leyton up to it, even by tricking him or playing on his fears. But we don't really get that connection here, and the episode is smooth enough to actually make us forget to ask. It seems wrapped up by the end when it's really not, because that Changeling is clearly still on Earth up to no good even if Leyton's been taken out of the picture. But perhaps the takeaway we're meant to have (which also isn't clear) is that the sort of plan that worked with Cardassian could never work on Earth anyhow. Not only did the Leyton plan fail, but it never could have succeeded regardless, because too many Starfleet officers are principled enough to reject a dictator; Starfleet couldn't be run from the top-down by a few Leyton loyalists like perhaps could happen on Cardassia with its authoritarian structure. So maybe after seeing that even loyal participants of the coup rejected it the Founders gave up on subverting Earth itself and decided to focus on DS9 in particular.
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Peter G.
Sun, Aug 13, 2017, 11:21pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Paradise Lost

*SPOILER for Startrekwatcher*

@ Chrome,

I don't see why "high ranking" should be a relevant factor. The Changeling in the S3 finale said "we're everywhere", not "we're only impersonating high ranking people." What they do is mimic who they need to do their job, which may or may not always be high ranking people. Bashir is a perfect choice, being someone who's rarely in OPS and therefore wouldn't be caught doing things that aren't normal for him. He hangs out in his own facility running the place, and probably doesn't report directly to any superiors that he might not know how to answer properly. In other words, he has access without having arduous duties that could expose him, the only logical choice, really.

More to the point, after the situation in The Adversary, then The Die Is Cast, then Gowron, and now fake-Leyton, we've been given enough evidence that Changelings pick high-ranking targets, which throws the audience off from thinking it will be a lower-ranking officer next time. It if wasn't for the outrageous escape from the prison camp the plan would have worked flawlessly, so why pick someone higher ranking than Bashir? Picking a lower-ranking officer is the long con.

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Peter G.
Sat, Aug 12, 2017, 9:58pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: Badda-Bing, Badda-Bang

"But that said I do think that the Benny Russell character and Sisko's experience gives him a unique perspective beyond the ordinary 24th century black man's. It's just a shame that the episode fails to tie his reaction in with that. Unfortunately, it just seems to come out of left field."

The thing is, it's not out of left field, not at all. Sisko had very visibly been sporting African-styled clothing and decorating his quarters with African art long before Benny was written in. And the fact of a black man being assigned to help a people just freed from oppression and slavery - this kind of fact is no accident either. Now, the fact of juxtaposing a black man with a newly freed people is a 'meta' concept, since in the 24th century black people weren'y newly freed any more, but nevertheless the image ought to strike the viewer immediately as being relevant and deliberate, just as the decorations in his quarters are deliberate. The fact of having experienced Benny's life as well is certainly a large direct exposure for Sisko, but something tells me they wrote that for him because of his already present 'silent arc' of having an interest in African history. The arc is there throughout the series, even though it's not overtly spoken of or given text, which I think is brilliant. But that does leave certain viewers who never noticed it wondering where the 'black history month' sentiments suddenly come in with Far Beyond the Stars and then here. But it was there all along in the background.

It makes all the sense in the world for the prophets to (presumably) give Sisko a vision experience of Benny since that was an area of interest of his already; he already had a sympathy for that past, and it could be used to give him a stronger sympathy for the Bajorans as well by showing Sisko that Bajor is in need of a champion just like black people on Earth were. So here, when Sisko finally says that the plight of the black man shouldn't be whitewashed from history, he's also allowing the writers to imply that just because the Bajorans have been free for several years it doesn't mean they don't still need him to be their Emissary. In fact, having been recently freed, they need him especially, just as the characters in FBTS needed a black rights movement. Sisko's sympathies for this subject are exactly the reason why he's suited to be the Emissary in the first place. He isn't just some 24th century guy; something about him is especially sensitive to peoples who are oppressed and have had almost everything taken away from them, just as he felt during the pilot. While it's true that some part of the dialogue here is probably Brook having pushed for something like that to be put in, since the subject is important to him personally, all the same it's so right for the character to express that however freed from the past the other crew members might be, Sisko just isn't put together like that. It's not a condemnation of them, it's who he is. I'm sure on this score if Kira were present for the conversation she'd have backed him up 100%, because she gets it.
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Peter G.
Fri, Aug 11, 2017, 9:19pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Paradise Lost

@ DLPB,

I applaud you! I much appreciate you contributing to avoid giving spoilers to what comes next by pretending they don't happen! Good effort to help Startrekwatcher enjoy the series more and be surprised ;)
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Peter G.
Fri, Aug 11, 2017, 11:06am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Paradise Lost

Ok, except even then I think you're way off. This episode has distinct consequences, some direct and some indirect. I'll say more if you want and if you've already seen the whole series.
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Peter G.
Wed, Aug 9, 2017, 11:37am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: The Chase

@ Chrome,

Yes, they are not incompatible. It's just a little more complex to envision a backstory where the progenitors split into two factions, one of which evolved into the Founders and the other of which...disappeared I guess? I just seems simpler to me to imagine that the progenitors collectively evolved into a more advanced life form, seeing as how they had so many millions of years to do it. I guess I'm not so fond of thinking of them as being just another group of Iconians that up and vanished for no reason. Maybe we could imagine that one group of them became Changelings and the others became non-corporeal like the Organians or something.

Yeah, it's all possible. It just strikes me as more poetically ironic to consider the Founders as really being *the Founders* of all the races we know, only to end up complacent and miles behind their children in the ethics department.
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Peter G.
Wed, Aug 9, 2017, 10:04am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S4: Paradise Lost

"No urgency no dread no foreboding no epic stakes no shakeup in the status quo."

Lol, dude, you're barking up the wrong tree with this one! You picked the wrong series, bub.
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Peter G.
Wed, Aug 9, 2017, 10:02am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S3: Yesterday's Enterprise

@ Eric Stillwell,

Don't mind the nitpickers! Many of us consider this story to be one of the best ever told on TV, so thank you for your work on it.
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Peter G.
Tue, Aug 8, 2017, 2:24pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S6: The Chase

Gah! Heh, ok, if we're green lighting spoiling DS9 then I can just come out and say what I was alluding to earlier in the thread.

*DS9 SPOILER* (just for good measure)

Chrome, we don't know how old the message in The Chase is. We do know that the Founders were once solid, and we can imagine that back then they were probably a lot more amicable than they became once they were Changelings. We are also told that the Founders are *very old*, and that the link isn't really good at keeping track of time, to the extent that millions of years could pass and they probably wouldn't notice. Part of why they're always so pissed off is probably because daily running of their empire requires them to leave the link and micromanage stuff on a minute scale of time by their sensibility.

Offhand, if we were to consider how crazy being metamorphic is compared to being solid, I can't imagine the change took place over a short period of time unless they genetically engineered themselves into that state. Assuming it was natural, which is the Trek standard (corporeal beings evolving into powerful advanced beings, often non-corporeal), it would have needed millions of years at least to happen. Maybe more. Once we think of the history of the Founders as being *that old* any considerations about the attitude of the being in the hologram versus how the Founders are is really moot. It's not going to be the same gang after many millions of years no matter how you cut it.

On a sci-fi level I love the idea that the race that seeded most of the solids we know advanced to the point where they withdrew into themselves and gave up on material concerns in the universe, only to then be subject to harassment by their 'children'. It reminds me of a principle explained in the book Calculating God, by Sawyer, where an alien states that once civilizations advance to a certain degree it is natural for them to then determine how to upload themselves into, in effect, The Matrix, and live forever in digital form, in a paradise of their choosing. That's not evolution, mind you, but it's the same gist as the Founders discovering paradise and retreating into it forever, only to be majorly pissed when dragged out of it by races trying to bother them.

Speaking of children, I also see a parallel in the progenitors' decision to seed many words with their 'children' and with the Founders' habit of sending out their children in the galaxy to learn. Sounds like a vaguely similar approach, no?

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Peter G.
Mon, Aug 7, 2017, 2:24pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: Crossover

What I like best about the mirror episodes, other than the fact that I think the actors are having lots of fun, is that they show part of the character of the real versions that are suppressed but still present. I consider the alternate versions to be different aspects of the real ones having been brought out, but that it's the same person in terms of potential. So if mirror Sisko acts like an animal it's because our Sisko has that in him too, even if it's been tempered by experience and discipline and rarely shows itself. And if alternate Odo is a fascist, and alternate Kira goes more off of emotion than cold reason, those traits are somehow present in the real versions as well. It might stretch credulity to also suggest that certain details - such as the Intendant's sexual predilections - are mirrored as well, but overall I like that the mirror episodes let us see part of the inner truth of our characters that they were prefer to keep under wraps in the prime universe.
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Peter G.
Sat, Aug 5, 2017, 9:28am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: Crossover

@ Steve,

On the contrary, I seem to be the only one who really likes them.
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Peter G.
Wed, Aug 2, 2017, 10:52am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S6: Far Beyond the Stars

@ Strejda,

"BTW, of all the 50's DS9 characters, Lofton's is the only one who didn't work for me. He was just way too over the top and annoying-kind of a problem when I'm supposed to be all sad when gets shot."

On the level of "I like this character" I kind of agree, but to an extent I think it was a deliberate choice on behalf of writers. Of the three black men portrayed in the episode they give you three scenarios of what life could be like for a black man. In general the idea was that they weren't accepted in any kind of upscale work but could do menial labor and things like that. You have the one case of a black man who's one of the lucky few ones that hits the big time due to being an athlete, and acts as a sort of false symbol of what life would afford black people. You have Benny, who tries to slip under the radar and do a regular job despite being black. And then you have the petty criminal, who turns to crime most likely because of the lack of real opportunities for employment. He's made to be annoying and unlikable for a reason, I think, which is that society views the need to both with black people in general as unlikable and annoying. He's the thorn in everyone's side, and romanticizing him by making the character charming would undermine that fact. The fact that we don't care as much as we could when he dies is sort of a reflection on how the society there would view it, and Benny is left mourning for him alone, even divided from the viewing audience at that point. After all, isn't it a bias that we only care about the outcomes of characters we personally like? In TV that seems to be taken for granted, but putting up a mirror to us I think it can also show that we do the same thing in real life. We care about things close to us, and not so much things that are strange, or even annoying. By making Lofton's character here annoying the episode achieved the goal of putting us in the position of mentally treating him like the culture in the episode did. Very clever, that. How many times have you read episode reviews and seen posts saying that wished such and such annoying character would die already? Well they did that here, and the only man mourning him is the "crazy" man with wild visions of the future.
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Peter G.
Wed, Aug 2, 2017, 9:16am (UTC -5)
Re: TOS S1: Dagger of the Mind

...that's not all he's lost.
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Peter G.
Mon, Jul 31, 2017, 8:58pm (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S7: Genesis

@ Jasper,

No.
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Peter G.
Mon, Jul 31, 2017, 1:43pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: 'Til Death Do Us Part

@ Quarkisskyder,

Sisko had finally made the decision that the direction of his life was his choice to make and not somebody else's, so why should having one more vision require him to disclose it to Kasidy and discuss it by committee? Like Leia said, "I'm not a committee." The whole point of his choice is that he shouldn't *have to* sit down and have other people/beings tell him what he should do. He knows what he wants to do, and it's his choice. Having one more vision doesn't change that, but it sounds like you're saying that he really hasn't got the right to decide for himself whether to marry or not without consulting others. It's not like the vision would change Kasidy's mind; Sisko already knew very well she wanted to marry him regardless of what the Prophets said. Stopping the wedding to relate the vision to her would just be chickening out of his decision. It's his decision to chicken out of, sure, but he shouldn't back out because of the conclusions others might come to as a result of his vision.
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Peter G.
Fri, Jul 28, 2017, 12:36pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: Paradise

@ Chrome,

I think there are people more vexed by technology than just love/hate. But we could go further, and suggest that some people are squarely in the hate camp even though if asked they would say they're in the love camp. It all depends on whether love/hate correlates to what's good/bad for you, or just based on desire. An addict may 'love' getting his fix, but may on some level (even if unconscious) recognize it's bad for him and that there is no good thing about it.

Have you read the Dune series, by any chance? In it Herbert describes how technology can finally enslave man - or allow them to enslave each other, most likely under conditions where the people are vying for it. Observe people addicted to their smart phones and tell me if that is making them 'happy'. Oh, they may say it's awesome, but it that a case of them being happy with technology or just with them being blind as to what is best for them? Maybe it's a bit of both. I think Alixus is probably more right than we'd like to admit considering how despicably she acts. The problem with her theory isn't the theory, it's her. Any despotic cult leader with a good theory is still a despotic cult leader. But the explanation of why the colonists stay doesn't have to be written off as them being brainwashed. Their leader can be as nasty as she wants, if the colonists agree in the end with her theories then there may be good reason to stay.
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Peter G.
Fri, Jul 28, 2017, 10:03am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: Paradise

Good post, Grumpy, but for the purpose of the Trek analysis I think you should assume that the environmental problems with tech have been solved and that the *entire* issue is about lifestyle. The survivalist ethic, for instance, isn't so much about pollution or even the job market, but about man becoming incapable and dependent, and that deep down knowing this makes people unhappy. It is even true today with the amount of things we rely on that we have no idea how they're done or even who doe them.
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Peter G.
Wed, Jul 26, 2017, 9:02am (UTC -5)
Re: TNG S4: The Best of Both Worlds, Part II

@ JohnTY,

Normally a captain dying or being promoted would result in a new captain assigned to the ship, so that's not a conflict of interest for the XO like it was in Mirror, Mirror. In Riker's case you're probably right that he would take Picard's place permanently if anything happened, which in S5-7 may have been a plausible reason to want to remain XO on the Enterprise. Prior to that I think he actually wanted to remain under Picard's guidance rather than jump ahead to command and lose that mentorship.

As for who could be his XO, Troi wasn't authorized to command a starship even though in Disaster she temporarily had command due to her rank. Crusher would never have agreed to take the post even if it was offered. Geordi is the only one who had commanded before and would have possibly wanted to, so maybe he could have been included in the discussion, but I guess it was meant to be obvious that he'd be better placed in engineering. Data and Worf were the two only senior officers qualified as XO who would have vied for the position if given a chance.
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Peter G.
Tue, Jul 25, 2017, 3:42pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: What You Leave Behind

@ Robert,

Kira seems to constantly skirt between having turned a new leaf and reverting to her old self. Maybe we can attribute some of that to faulty writing (backsliding her progress), but it seems pretty clear that they intended for her to come full circle and end the series as a terrorist just as she began it. With new understanding, with more control, but having gone through the arc of recognizing peaceful paradise just long enough to know she had to get back in the trenches to fight for it.

I think a big moment for her that greys her outlook is during the 2nd occupation when she realizes she's a collaborator. Funny enough, for her the greying comes as a result of her becoming *less violent*, whereas for the Federation people it's them becoming more violent for the most part. In terms of being 'clean and pure' I think she was never meant to be that in the first place. In the spirit of Ensign Ro, her role seems to have been one of being damaged goods already, and struggling to balance everything. At her best her purity of intent wins out, but on the balance she has so many jagged edges it's hard for me to see her as having been pure at any point like Julian was in S1.
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Peter G.
Tue, Jul 25, 2017, 3:27pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: What You Leave Behind

@ Chrome,

That's basically why I specified that Garak's value were refined and honed, but not by Federation (i.e. nice guy) standards. So he was 'better', insofar as his character and his methods began to be used towards nobler ends than his personal gain. That, at least, seems to have been a trait that even his Federation associates respected, especially Odo and Julian.

About Odo, yes, some of his misdeeds were in the past, but the issue with him is that he was in denial for a long time about what he had really done. So while the collaboration was 'in the past', as long as he believed he had done no wrong and didn't change then he was the same guy, just in a different environment. It took being made to face his crime to realize how wrong he was (and by extention, how wrong his people are). And of course switching sides during the 2nd occupation happens late in the series, so that too is a question of him realizing what his true nature had been up until that point and finally deciding whether to embrace it or to try to change. The Founders never feel the need to change, and that's the lesson he tought them: how to change themselves, and not just their external shape. It was a core principle of being a Changeling that they were lacking, since they ironically were inflexible in seeing things from different points of view. I think Odo needed to have made serious mistakes in order to be *forced* to adopt a new perspective, since he wouldn't have even bothered trying to do it without the added push of being made to face his errors. Even Dr. Mora told him that he was totally unwilling to change his form until being forced to do so; he wanted to sit around being the same all the time. It seems entirely likely that Odo's people are just the same way, and having been dominant for so long, no one was ever in a position to 'make them' change.
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Peter G.
Tue, Jul 25, 2017, 3:00pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: What You Leave Behind

@ Chrome:

Are you sure that Odo is "clean and pure"? And are you sure that those are qualities that would be convincing to the Founders even if he were? Note that they probably consider themselves to be clean and pure as well, and would assess any comment from an innocent Odo as him being young and naive and not having the wisdom of the link. Clean and pure would seem to imply having steered clear of wrong, but is that what was needed of him to add something unique to the link?

On the contrary, the series goes out of its way to show that Odo is by no means clean and pure, despite being overall good. We know that an alternate version of him was willing to eliminate thousands of colonists in order to save the love of his life. We know that he collaborated in the execution of Bajoran prisoners in the past to appease his sense of order, and we know that he kept this from Kira and that justice had nothing to do with it. We know that during the 2nd occupation he deserted to the side of the Founders temporarily. This last incident is so serious that it's no surprise how many commenters on this site find his offense there unforgiveable and don't buy Kira accepting his friendship again so easily.

I think it's his lack of perfection that allowed him the best chance to get through to the Founders. If he had avoided all error he would basically be like the Founders, only just on the other side. But because he made mistakes like the solids, fell in love like one, and was confused about his loyalties like one, he really did experience life as a solid like no other Changeling apparently had. He had some real information to transmit to them that they truly didn't know or believe before. Consider how damning to the female Changeling it would be to discover that her intimate moments with Odo on the station are now considered by him to be a time of weakness and betrayal, while previously she couldn't have understood it as anything but a time of clarity for Odo. Seeing his side of that incident would be a rude awakening, that her 'paradise' could actually be a curse to him.

If I wanted to pick a character that came out of DS9 clean, or at least cleaner than he was when he came in, I'd have to name Garak. Not clean by Federation standards, of course, but it seems that his patriotism towards Cardassia is refined and focused over time so that in the end he could find himself a hero of his people rather than just looking out for his own advantage. Even just finding common cause with the Federation would be no small matter for a Cardassian. We might also name Quark and Rom, who both have various stains against them but seem to unequivocally veer towards Federation values over the course of the series. But yes, all of the Federation people as well as Kira seem to become tainted with some darkness or another over the course of the series. Miles bears it better than the rest of them because he's already been around the block, but his hands definitely get dirty.
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Peter G.
Tue, Jul 25, 2017, 12:11pm (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S7: What You Leave Behind

@ Chrome:

"Which is ironic, because if Section 31 hasn't invented the disease, there would be no need for a cure in the first place. Do you think the writers trying to say Section 31 saved the alpha quadrant?"

I think, like many other matters in DS9, they intended it to be grey. I tend to put more stock than many do in the logic Sloan uses when discussing his methods with Bashir.

However even if we unequivocally say that Section 31 did something bad, I think it's plausible to read from the situation that good can come even from bad things that happen. If they did something wrong, Bashir and Odo were given the opportunity to correct it and perhaps gain the trust of the Founders in a way that wouldn't have been possible otherwise. But it's not Section 31 that are responsible for that good, even though they unknowingly laid the groundwork for it.

That being said, it's hard to argue that Section 31's methods were ineffective, right or wrong.
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