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About the Prime Directive...

Lorentz

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 1:31 am

I’ve summarized my thoughts about the Prime Directive and posed a question at the end of this post.

SUMMARY:
There has been no explanation in any of the episodes of any of the series why civilizations in this part of the galaxy would develop warp capability at the same time. Even if many civilizations were "seeded" by a progenitor race of some kind, as described in "The Chase," there should be sufficient variability in their development to allow them each to develop warp over a broad period of time, perhaps centuries or millenia. I would also point out that there has been no mention of Enterprise or other Earth launched exploration missions detecting any other political organization of space-faring civilizations similar to what the Federation will become. Without such a political organization to impose a "prime directive" of its own, then other warp capable civilizations must have individually encountered pre-warp civilizations resulting in any one of the three following scenarios:

1) The warp capable civilization "interfered" with the pre-warp civilization and inadvertently or deliberately contributed to that civilization’s destruction.

2) The warp capable civilization "interfered" with the pre-warp civilization and inadvertently or deliberately contributed to that civilization’s development of warp capability.

3) The warp capable civilization detected the pre-warp civilization and left it alone.

We know that Starfleet eventually adopts the Prime Directive. However, prior to that happening, centuries or millenia have passed with warp cultures comming across pre-warp cultures.

QUESTION:
Can anyone advance a valid theory why any one of the three scenarios would be more likely to occur than any other?

Damien

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 9:36 am

# 3 seems more likely to me as if you are a star hopping warp capable species what could possibly be of interest in a species that is planetbound. (this is provided that the planet in question has no natural resources that you are interested in... in that case see #1)

Q1

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 11:24 am

I’d say number one because anyone who would come up with a prime directive is a bungler and of course contiually goof up like in the number two scenario. The prime directive itself is indicator of low self assuarance.

Q1

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 11:24 am

I’d say number one because anyone who would come up with a prime directive is a bungler and of course contiually goof up like in the number one scenario. The prime directive itself is indicator of low self assuarance.

Lorentz

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 11:33 am

That’s an interesting idea. If there were little risk of harming anyone do you think it would be OK to contact a civilization and help them along? I think some folks wish we’d get that kind of help.

Q1

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 11:37 am

Of course, I mean what’s the real difference between the two civilizations? They’re the same, the only difference is their knowledge. If the advanced civilization was really more knowledgable they would know how to handle a less advanced civilization without messing up and without hurting anyone, themselves included.

In Star Wars there was no prime directive and none in 2001 either.

Q1

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 11:43 am

And let’s not forget how the federation measures advancement. They measure in purely technology, and not any specific type of technology but just technology. They don’t count analytical/social/spiritual/psychological/ abilities as open to that standard of advancement. It’s only technological. I mean consider the Vulcans with their high command and all their dogmas, and all of these wars these so called advanced civilizations have... What exactly are they advanced in?

Lorentz

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 12:02 pm

I’ve often wondered if new and different philosophies and psychology couldn’t be as destructive as bombs or energy weapons. Philisophies are more insidious and can creep into cultures right around physical technologies. Why would a war need to be fought or weapons used if an adversary could be defeated, coerced or manipulated through psychology alone.

Given all the new civilizations encountered there would be many potential threats.

Q1

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 12:09 pm

That’s what these so called great religions are. Cathalocism of course was the new weapon of the Roman Empire, which was used when they spread their empire in the so called new world. Psychological warfare is itself a method of war.

My point was though there are other types of advancement which aren’t necessarily exclusive of technology and in fact most of the time are the basis of it, like analytical thinking in science. Science came before technology.

Lorentz

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 12:25 pm

I see your point.

I wonder what it would take to develop a metric capable of evaluating an evolving civilization’s charateristics such as analytical thinking. With a sufficiently large sample and the appropriate criteria it might be possible to identify threats well before they completely evolve. From an evolutionary perspective it would be in our best interest to eliminate a threat before it can injure us. In that case interfering (even if just to make minor changes) would be in our best interest. Is it possible to have a workable definition of morality and ethics that would preclude our own survival?

Q1

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 12:55 pm

If morality and ethics exist, which they do, they would be definable, and of course would have a definition. So the question is do they exist? And this is actually kind of peculiar because most educated people have the same mindset as you do on this issue which really says a lot about our time.

To answer your question. You should try to influence them in a positive way if they are less developed than you are or just leave them alone, and only deflect them or actually fight them when they start attacking you or plan to attack you. The way to fight a plan for attack is to take away your enemies advantages, or their plan’s stepping stones. In other words fight a plan with disturbing the plan’s environment or context, and a actual attack by being faster and more forceful. I don’t think there’s any need or reason to cut anybody off in their evolutionary path because for a reaction there has to be a intention to harm present and when that doesn’t exist you have no right to interfere.

Lorentz

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 1:14 pm

Thanks for a very considered response.

The argument I was making was modelled along the lines of the current approach to eliminating perceived threats (Iraq/Hussein) and the specific nature of threats and perceptions. I don’t advocate reacting to a civilization (species, race, nation, any group) on the probabilities of what they MIGHT do, only on what they actually do. At most, I would suggest MINOR CHANGES (check my post) that might render a future confrontation less likely. I was trying to explore and develop an argument for contacting and interacting with a new civilization to promote more effective and mutually beneficial future relations. What should the scope and nature of the interaction be? Where would this type of interaction, if warranted at all, fit in the Prime Directive mandate.

Could you elucidate that "mindset" position that most educated people have?

Q1

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 1:23 pm

With the preemptive strike issue I think that if it has been established that they are an enemy and they have the intention to attack you then preemptive strikes or a attack of your ownare justifiable is justifiable to attack their abilities or by destroying their power.

The fact that there is even a question about the existence means there’s lack of understanding of it, which means we’re like the wraiths in the lord of the rings, empty or lost.

Q1

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 1:25 pm

With the preemptive strike issue I think that if it has been established that they are an enemy and they have the intention to attack you then preemptive strikes or a attack of your own are justifiable on their abilities or by destroying their power.

The fact that there is even a question about the existence of ethics means there’s lack of understanding of it, which means we’re like the wraiths in the lord of the rings, empty or lost.

So what is ethics? Ethics is based on love, love of life, which means you wouldn’t want it hurt or harmed. Hurt by taking away it’s freedom or by directly causing it pain or by destroying, taking it’s life away. It’s basicall love.

Q1

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Report this Dec. 23 2002, 1:35 pm

Well if not love then at least respect. ;)

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