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Wed, Feb 4, 2015, 10:56pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: For the Uniform

On General Order 24 "[...]an individual starship captain can issue such an order at his own discretion, without consulting Starfleet Command for approval."

Now this order also is to include the destruction of all major cities, but I assume it can be adapted if the planet becomes uninhabitable to the life living on it.

Anyways about the episode. I always have liked DS9 for its more "militaristic" and dark story. It shows a war where humans, who are always bolstering their peace, exploration and science, still have the primal instinct to do what it takes despite how 'extreme' the measures may be. I do think it is a bit over the top that Sisko was so quick to fire the torpedoes instead of try to draw Eddington out more.

With that said, it is a good example of what DS9 is meant to show: This isn't your TNG Federation anymore, this is war, and even we are willing to break our own rules for what we deem "the greater good." The Federation may be devoted to exploration when it's convenient, but now that isn't the case. Just like what Kira said when the Defiant was first introduced, "I thought the Federation didn't build warships." Section 31 shows that the Federation isn't totally forthcoming in their mission statement of peace and exploration.

All in all, I think it is on par for what the writers wanted to get across. Some of the posts are shocked at what Sisko did and how casual he was about it, and how there are no consequences. That is the point: You are stunned at what Sisko did, appalled he would do that despite all his past experiences and it is upsetting. He wasn't what you thought he was, despite all the talk of uniform and defending the Federation, he was willing to fall that far for a mission he was obsessed with.

There is no consequence, because despite how wrong it was to poison a planet Starfleet and the Federation are probably happy they have Eddington. They probably are also glad that the Maquis are reminded of the presence and power of Starfleet. Of course they would never admit it. Behind the disguise of it all, the Federation is still a power, and they like to be in control. The Romulans or Klingons would have razed the settlements and killed everyone with it, and the Federation let those people relocate. It doesn't excuse what they did, but again, seems to fit with DS9's portrayal of what the Federation will do and let people get away with.

I agree with 3 stars.
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Mon, Sep 22, 2014, 5:04am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S2: Paradise

The ending is such a stretch. You don't think some people maybe WANTED to be engineers and not farmers? Why is being a farmer and having a community better than exploring the stars? It over-simplifies this issue way to much and almost implies people would rather work really hard and go back to their roots instead of trying to make actual progress and enjoy the comforts their society has earned.

The idea that no one there was infuriated over the cut-off from their, what I can imagine to at least be a few, families is completely a joke. Plus the lack of justice for an obnoxious character, other than a few lines of dialogue explaining that she will be punished, is so unrewarding, and leaves me just wanting this episode to turn into an orbital bombardment of that village. I would just love to see O'Brian vaporize a few villagers, beam out, followed with a volley of torpedoes. Just get the kids out first, not their fault the parents are impossibly dense.
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Thu, Sep 4, 2014, 9:06pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S2: Pen Pals

I understand the grounds of the Prime Directive. If a species, who is completely unaware of life outside their galaxy, suddenly is saved by a different, more advanced species, it could completely throw off the geopolitical structure of a society. I think this is outlined really well in "First Contact" because it shows a society, that is intelligent but believes they are the center of the universe, starts having citizens break down in the most fundamental ways (crisis of faith, anti-progression, etc.) A species might even 'worship' said saviors because of the technology they couldn't understand saving their lives.

I think the Prime Directive is more about that we don't have all the details of a society, and we don't know what will happen if they realize they are just a piece of a vast universe full of aliens more and less advanced than them.

To me that is what this episode represents. The fact that in a time of dire need, when every hour counts, and you don't have all the details, do you risk the chance of completely throwing apart a society or accidentally empowering it to save it? Some would argue yes, but think of it in the most basic sense: Darwin's Theory of Natural Selection, would the death a species just be the ultimate form of natural selection? The inability to adapt in a very violent universe wipes a species out before a million other things do? Who knows, because we can't see the future and we have to assume Star Trek doesn't believe it does either. "The Ensigns of Command" is a good episode to display that - the original survivors of the downed ship had to adapt to the radiation, adapt to the environment and get water, supplies, and other necessities, and in the end they had to adapt to leaving all of that in order to survive; Albeit in this situation with the help of the federation, but the existence of the federation was not unknown to the survivors.
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