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Garak the spy

Discovery going darker?

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The conservatives I'm talking about are the tea bag/fox/alt right type conservatives, not all conservatives. These type conservatives have been fighting against science and science education for more than 30 years. That type of conservative was rare in the 1960's. In the 1960's a common conservative line was that we didn't need to worry about things because science would fix it.  The science part of Star Trek fits perfectly into the conservatives version of science in the 1960's. There's no poverty because science fixed it. There was no need for any social programs in the Star Trek universe because man's hard work and ingenuity fixed the problems. 

I would go into more detail but that would be derailing the topic.

Please indulge me one more comment, because I do agree that this is more KMish, and my hope is to do this in a non-confrontational and non-heated way.  How many tea party people do you know or associate with?  Any?  I think you may find that you're description of them is completely off base.  I think you read about it from certain sites and certain comedians, and maybe get some select stories that are designed to make them look as badly as possible, but not necessarily getting a true example of a real conservative.

I'm one of the few conservatives on this board, and I tend to avoid the KM section because I could literally spend all day there.  I actually don't even know if there are conservatives who post in there because I just stay away.  I get my political arguments in other forums.

Most of you all are left wing, some pretty far left, so I think it's fair to assume you're mostly democrats.  I don't know for sure, but I'm guessing. 

 

Now imagine a situation where members of your own party aren't doing what they are supposed to do.  Trump gets in, with a Republican congress, and while you understand they can't stop too much, your side doesn't even put up a real fight.  Or worse, your own party is in power, and they govern exactly the same way the Republicans do.  In other words, same crap, different party.  They aren't representing your interests. 

What do you do?  Now let's say the failures spark a group of left wingers to try to take back their party and call for them to do what they are voted in to do.  They become a separate wing of your party, and they do have some success.  Isn't that American politics at its finest?  Telling the incumbents of your own party to shape up or be replaced?

That's basically the Tea Party. They were formed to try to get some more fiscal responsibility in government.  There are bad apples in every group, and yes, that includes the left as well.  There are some horribly corrupt people in the democrat party, and you guys should have your own mini-revolution and clean some house.

 

So referring to Tea Party people as "tea baggers" is like referring to left wingers as "libtards."  I know that not all democrats are the same, and that unfortunately, there are some extremists that tend to get louder voices.  The same holds true for the right.  If people aren't going to listen to the other side, then division will only get worse.

It's not IDIC to demonize people because they don't agree with you politically.  The bad examples you come up with is NOT the majority. 

And please don't confuse alt-right with mainstream Republicans.  That's like confusing a moderate democrat with Fidel Castro.  The alt-right people are a bunch of animals. They do NOT represent conservatives at all.  They don't represent anyone except the worst of humanity. 

Getting a little more ON topic, I don't think Star Trek is as liberal as you all think.  I say this because as a conservative, at least with the original series, I see plenty of conservative ideals in there.  Sure, there are liberal ideals too, but Hollywood wasn't as left wing then as it is today.  There are characters in Star Trek that I feel would vote Republican in general, Kirk and Scotty stand out.  Spock is very centrist, with maybe a slight leaning left.  McCoy to me is a moderate democrat.  Ironically, I see Sulu as a slightly right of center guy, and no real opinion on the others.  Different characters, good and bad fall on either side of the spectrum.   Most of you probably see it as very liberal, but I think if Star Trek were truly like that, someone like me would be very turned off by it.

Berman era incarnations of Trek were far more leftist than TOS, though I think Sisko falls on my side of the aisle. :D

 

So in fairness, I'll respect Sehlat's wishes on whether to reply to the top part of my post.  I'm not sure if the Star Trek part of the post should be replied to or not, and I'll defer.

 

But I am pretty sure that your impressions of conservatives are not as cut and dried as you think.

 

 

Last comment from my side in this. I live in New England. I am in New Hampshire a lot. New Hampshire is 50/50 politically. When I listen to local talk radio, I hear a lot of conservatives who have perfectly valid views. I disagree with them but I wouldn't have any problem with them as my mayor or governor. When I listen to many of the leaders  of the party, I hear people who are much more extreme than the typical people that they represent. There is too much of a disconnect from reality with many Republicans in power. I also find frightening, the number of straight outright lies I hear in conservative media. 

When I was a child in the 1960's, if someone started talking about a massive conspiracy involving thousands of people in hundreds of countries that served no real purpose they would be called crackpots. Now they get elected to congress. Liberals come up with many bad ideas but they usually have a connection with reality. 

And yes, I have family members who are conservatives. They are what I call old school conservatives. Most of them are appalled with the state of the Republican party today.  Too many alt right politicians are getting into positions of power. 

I totally agree with StillKirok that name calling is a waste of time. I'm just not sure what to call that brand of conservatives who want to do things like eliminating child labor laws so 5 year olds can work in factories like they used to. Or eliminating most environmental regulations. 

Ok back to Star Trek. The more I think about it, the more I'd like to see the new show address the toxic politics common in today's society. All side have good ideas and bad ideas but automatically rejecting ideas simply because the other side is promoting them is self defeating. 

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Getting a little more ON topic, I don't think Star Trek is as liberal as you all think.  I say this because as a conservative, at least with the original series, I see plenty of conservative ideals in there.  Sure, there are liberal ideals too, but Hollywood wasn't as left wing then as it is today.  There are characters in Star Trek that I feel would vote Republican in general, Kirk and Scotty stand out.  Spock is very centrist, with maybe a slight leaning left.  McCoy to me is a moderate democrat.  Ironically, I see Sulu as a slightly right of center guy, and no real opinion on the others.  Different characters, good and bad fall on either side of the spectrum.   Most of you probably see it as very liberal, but I think if Star Trek were truly like that, someone like me would be very turned off by it.

I agree that the TOS characters had leanings one way or another, but one must remember that Kirk (who was clearly modeled after JFK) was a '60s ideal of a 'gunboat diplomacy' Democrat.  McCoy was a humanist.   Spock was professorial, but adhered to logic not necessarily politics.  As for the others?  I think one identifies with those elements one recognizes in themselves, true or not.   At any rate, ALL of these characters lived in a system without money, where everyone had full gender and racial equality, and everyone was assured of a free education if they wished it.   So whatever the individual leanings of TOS characters, they were all living within Roddenberry's arguably socialist utopia of his 23rd century (which, despite the military aspect of Starfleet, was very contrary to Republican values of the '60s and today).

 Berman era incarnations of Trek were far more leftist than TOS, though I think Sisko falls on my side of the aisle.

I think arguments could be made one way or the other; Riker is clearly more reactionary than the more sagacious nature of Picard, for example.  But Picard is no slouch in military matters either.   As for Sisko being more conservative?  He's a single, African-American dad whose best friend was a slug living in a bisexual host ( ;)); but yeah, one sees what they want in these characters...in spite of the fact that these characters still reside within the very socialist/pro-humanist/progressive future envisioned by Roddenberry's (and others writers') legacy.    So yes, the characters may (arguably) lean one way or the other, but they ALL reside in a greater system that is obviously progressive and certainly recognizably socialist in nature (socialist as in an extension of current social policies all over the world, including the US; not communism... just to be clear).

But I am pretty sure that your impressions of conservatives are not as cut and dried as you think.

I wouldn't presume to know what scenario's impression of conservatives are or aren't, but I have friends on the right in my own circle.  And yes, they often defy the perceived stereotypes as well.   I would argue that most of us (as in human beings) defy stereotypes if given a chance. ;)

I totally agree with StillKirok that name calling is a waste of time.

Agreed with SK on that as well. :)

Ok back to Star Trek. The more I think about it, the more I'd like to see the new show address the toxic politics common in today's society. All side have good ideas and bad ideas but automatically rejecting ideas simply because the other side is promoting them is self defeating. 

^
This.
But it should do so in a manner that doesn't necessarily compromise the core ideals of Star Trek.   I don't want to see the show try to do "Battlestar Enterprise" (like ENT did in its 3rd year), or to become 'dark' like "Walking Dead" (although a spinoff show about redshirts could fill that role... hehe).   It has to remain true to the spirit of inclusiveness and optimism that is the very CORE of the show.   Otherwise, it's not Star Trek.  

That was my biggest problem with STID; it never felt like Star Trek in any way.   
The Starfleet was corrupt, Section 31 had gone rampant, and the 'good guys' were as screwed up as Khan and his people.   Was this an organization WORTH saving?  Or worth investing care in?   Our only empathy was with the crew of the Enterprise, and not the world in which they came from.    That's not good.   Star Trek is about a future worth striving for, and not just a single ship and crew.   It was a fatal flaw that made STID feel like a pod-person impersonator of Star Trek to me.   And yes, the political leanings are part of that DNA.    In the end, STID just felt like a generic action movie that happened to feature Kirk, Spock and McCoy.   It lost ST's soul.   

And I thought STB brought some of that back; especially with the 'utopian' vision of Starbase Yorktown, and that better future worth protecting (even little touches like Sulu's same sex marriage; a throwaway moment that spoke of ST's inclusiveness, as did the myriad alien faces populating Yorktown alongside humans).   The metaphor of reactionary Capt. Balthazar Edison was kind of like the Federation shedding its own 'skin of evil' (to use a TNG episode metaphor), and I certainly took that away from it.    

ST got it's humanist/socialist groove back.

I'm thinking/hoping that DSC will do the same in keeping ST close to what makes it Star Trek.

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scenario   

Getting a little more ON topic, I don't think Star Trek is as liberal as you all think.  I say this because as a conservative, at least with the original series, I see plenty of conservative ideals in there.  Sure, there are liberal ideals too, but Hollywood wasn't as left wing then as it is today.  There are characters in Star Trek that I feel would vote Republican in general, Kirk and Scotty stand out.  Spock is very centrist, with maybe a slight leaning left.  McCoy to me is a moderate democrat.  Ironically, I see Sulu as a slightly right of center guy, and no real opinion on the others.  Different characters, good and bad fall on either side of the spectrum.   Most of you probably see it as very liberal, but I think if Star Trek were truly like that, someone like me would be very turned off by it.

I agree that the TOS characters had leanings one way or another, but one must remember that Kirk (who was clearly modeled after JFK) was a '60s ideal of a 'gunboat diplomacy' Democrat.  McCoy was a humanist.   Spock was professorial, but adhered to logic not necessarily politics.  As for the others?  I think one identifies with those elements one recognizes in themselves, true or not.   At any rate, ALL of these characters lived in a system without money, where everyone had full gender and racial equality, and everyone was assured of a free education if they wished it.   So whatever the individual leanings of TOS characters, they were all living within Roddenberry's arguably socialist utopia of his 23rd century (which, despite the military aspect of Starfleet, was very contrary to Republican values of the '60s and today).

 Berman era incarnations of Trek were far more leftist than TOS, though I think Sisko falls on my side of the aisle.

I think arguments could be made one way or the other; Riker is clearly more reactionary than the more sagacious nature of Picard, for example.  But Picard is no slouch in military matters either.   As for Sisko being more conservative?  He's a single, African-American dad whose best friend was a slug living in a bisexual host ( ;)); but yeah, one sees what they want in these characters...in spite of the fact that these characters still reside within the very socialist/pro-humanist/progressive future envisioned by Roddenberry's (and others writers') legacy.    So yes, the characters may (arguably) lean one way or the other, but they ALL reside in a greater system that is obviously progressive and certainly recognizably socialist in nature (socialist as in an extension of current social policies all over the world, including the US; not communism... just to be clear).

But I am pretty sure that your impressions of conservatives are not as cut and dried as you think.

I wouldn't presume to know what scenario's impression of conservatives are or aren't, but I have friends on the right in my own circle.  And yes, they often defy the perceived stereotypes as well.   I would argue that most of us (as in human beings) defy stereotypes if given a chance. ;)

I totally agree with StillKirok that name calling is a waste of time.

Agreed with SK on that as well. :)

Ok back to Star Trek. The more I think about it, the more I'd like to see the new show address the toxic politics common in today's society. All side have good ideas and bad ideas but automatically rejecting ideas simply because the other side is promoting them is self defeating. 

^
This.
But it should do so in a manner that doesn't necessarily compromise the core ideals of Star Trek.   I don't want to see the show try to do "Battlestar Enterprise" (like ENT did in its 3rd year), or to become 'dark' like "Walking Dead" (although a spinoff show about redshirts could fill that role... hehe).   It has to remain true to the spirit of inclusiveness and optimism that is the very CORE of the show.   Otherwise, it's not Star Trek.  

That was my biggest problem with STID; it never felt like Star Trek in any way.   
The Starfleet was corrupt, Section 31 had gone rampant, and the 'good guys' were as screwed up as Khan and his people.   Was this an organization WORTH saving?  Or worth investing care in?   Our only empathy was with the crew of the Enterprise, and not the world in which they came from.    That's not good.   Star Trek is about a future worth striving for, and not just a single ship and crew.   It was a fatal flaw that made STID feel like a pod-person impersonator of Star Trek to me.   And yes, the political leanings are part of that DNA.    In the end, STID just felt like a generic action movie that happened to feature Kirk, Spock and McCoy.   It lost ST's soul.   

And I thought STB brought some of that back; especially with the 'utopian' vision of Starbase Yorktown, and that better future worth protecting (even little touches like Sulu's same sex marriage; a throwaway moment that spoke of ST's inclusiveness, as did the myriad alien faces populating Yorktown alongside humans).   The metaphor of reactionary Capt. Balthazar Edison was kind of like the Federation shedding its own 'skin of evil' (to use a TNG episode metaphor), and I certainly took that away from it.    

ST got it's humanist/socialist groove back.

I'm thinking/hoping that DSC will do the same in keeping ST close to what makes it Star Trek.

That's what the colony planet's are for. I've always thought in TOS that there was a wave of settlements that settled hundreds of planets with humans. Then there was gap of time. It should be a few hundred years but there's not enough time in the timeline for that. Maybe the first warp drives tended to go back in time as well as space and burned out after one use. Colony ships leaves Earth after WWIII. Many of their warp drives malfunction. The settlers settle the new planets. Then the enterprise finds alternate versions of the earth.

They could find a world founded by two colonies. Each are far right/left stereotypes. It's a classic TOS setup. Wouldn't have worked in any of the later shows. 

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My impression is that TOS has elements of both, classic "liberal" and "conservative" elements:

The utopia, the world without poverty and racial discrimination, may be a "liberal" dream -- but it was realized via endless resources, via technological progress, not by socialist policies. So many conservatives can probably agree on it, too (when all races behave like educated, well-mannered white American universalists, as they do on Star Trek, that might even be a conservative utopia -- and the only reason why many conservatives reject utopias, is because they feel conservatives are supposed to be "realistic"; but if someone showed a realistic way how it could be achieved? They wouldn't mind, as long as there is order in this utopia).

Another reason why conservatives might be able to identify with this utopia: It's a world without crime, a very safe world. For conservatives I know, a very ordered, stable world with total safety and without crime indeed is a utopia. Though this might be a German thing.

The "frontier" aspect, cannonboat diplomacy and Kirk's "cowboy" attitude, his "realism", were certainly suited for conservatives to identify with. Just like liberals could happily identify with the utopia.

Old school conservatives were Western universalists.

Problem with "alt-right" and the new Trump brand of "conservatism" is that it's neither universalist, nor based on Western values. So I guess there is not much left on Star Trek these types of conservatives could identify with. As the new President's strategic advisor coined it: They rather identify with Darth Vader and Satan as role models for their policies.

Edited by Sim

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Was Kirk modeled after JFK?  Is there evidence of that?  I'm curious.  That would be very interesting, because I feel that JFK's views are far more conservative than the democrat party today, and that he would likely be a Republican in 2016.  Either that, or the democrat party would be far more centrist. 

I agree that the TOS characters had leanings one way or another, but one must remember that Kirk (who was clearly modeled after JFK) was a '60s ideal of a 'gunboat diplomacy' Democrat.  McCoy was a humanist.   Spock was professorial, but adhered to logic not necessarily politics.  As for the others?  I think one identifies with those elements one recognizes in themselves, true or not.   At any rate, ALL of these characters lived in a system without money, where everyone had full gender and racial equality, and everyone was assured of a free education if they wished it.   So whatever the individual leanings of TOS characters, they were all living within Roddenberry's arguably socialist utopia of his 23rd century (which, despite the military aspect of Starfleet, was very contrary to Republican values of the '60s and today).

I think it depends.  I think there are certainly many aspects of the culture that might not work with conservatives, but not all.  The Federation was very much based on US culture, which was not socialist.  Kirk was a proud American and adhered to the values this country is supposed to stand for.  For the most part, TOS didn't really cover the average life of a non-Starfleet person, so we really don't know, though there was some system of credits, which means there is some compensation.  I don't really see the TOS culture as conservative or liberal.  I see it as a world where humanity's biggest weakness, itself, has been solved, and anything was possible as a result. 

On Earth, humans worked it all out.  No tyranny, no oppression, no conflict.  That allowed all those resources to be allocated toward better things, and I don't think that's political if you accept that premise that it just happened.

 

I think arguments could be made one way or the other; Riker is clearly more reactionary than the more sagacious nature of Picard, for example.  But Picard is no slouch in military matters either.   As for Sisko being more conservative?  He's a single, African-American dad whose best friend was a slug living in a bisexual host ( ;)); but yeah, one sees what they want in these characters...in spite of the fact that these characters still reside within the very socialist/pro-humanist/progressive future envisioned by Roddenberry's (and others writers') legacy.    So yes, the characters may (arguably) lean one way or the other, but they ALL reside in a greater system that is obviously progressive and certainly recognizably socialist in nature (socialist as in an extension of current social policies all over the world, including the US; not communism... just to be clear).

Sisko wasn't just a single dad.  He was a widower who raised his kid and instilled him with great values.  African Americans can certainly be conservative.  And when it came time to war, he had the stomach and guts to do what had to be done, and understood that he was in charge and that a military is not a democracy.  Sometimes he pulled a Lincoln, and walked the line to protect the greater good.  I prefer to ignore the finale for Sisko because that was so out of character it really shouldn't destroy 7 years of great character development. 

My impression is that TOS has elements of both, classic "liberal" and "conservative" elements:

The utopia, the world without poverty and racial discrimination, may be a "liberal" dream -- but it was realized via endless resources, via technological progress, not by socialist policies.

Again, speaking as one of the few conservatives on this board, I don't know if it's accurate to say that a world free of racial discrimination is solely a liberal ideal.  Conservatives believe in that too, and have led the way.  The Civil Rights Act of 1964 had more Republican support than Democrat support.  Desegregation began under Eisenhower.  Racism does still exist, but it does so on both sides of the aisle.  I think conservatives and liberals have different ideas on what equal treatment means, but I don't feel that one side deserves more credit than the other on racial issues, and that in a world where there is true equality, that's neither a conservative nor liberal ideal.  I think it's an American one. 

 

And one minor thing--while the alt-right morons like Trump, they're in for a disappointment.  Trump is not one of them anymore than any of us are.  He even blasted them.  I don't think people realize that Trump really isn't much of a conservative either.  He's far more left than the press lets on, and he's probably the most centrist person in the White House since JFK.  He may govern more to the right because that's his base, but in theory, he'll probably govern closer to Clinton, except instead of a little left of center, he'll be a little right of center.

 

 

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Was Kirk modeled after JFK?  Is there evidence of that?  I'm curious.  That would be very interesting, because I feel that JFK's views are far more conservative than the democrat party today, and that he would likely be a Republican in 2016.  Either that, or the democrat party would be far more centrist. 

^
Without getting too much into the KM aspects of the state of the Democratic party, I have read multiple sources (too numerous to cite each specifically) that compare Kennedy to Kirk; I have at least half a dozen books (including my recent "These Are The Voyages" books by Marc Cushman) that make that same comparison.  But to me, it's self-evident: a young brash leader who has humanist ideologies but is also a gutsy military strategist.   Kennedy was a hero aboard the WW2-era PT-109; Kirk was a heroic ensign aboard the Farragut who had numerous commendations before he even made captain.   Kennedy fought hard against racist politicians like Alabama governor George Wallace for desegregation, and Kirk's bridge had a black woman in communications and an Asian man at the helm (Kennedy's dream fulfilled).   Kennedy was also a well-known ladies' man (this was known even during his presidency; though the more salacious details came into light after his death), and he was well-practiced in the art of brinksmanship (the Cuban Missile crisis = the Corbomite Maneuver, Errand of Mercy).  

I'm not saying Kirk was a one-for-one JFK clone but the influences are clearly there, and one doesn't have to be a historian to look for them. 

The Federation was very much based on US culture, which was not socialist. 

Really?   You don't find a lack of a currency-based economy where each man is born with "hope (for) a common future" ("City on the Edge...") just a wee bit socialist?   It's not exactly capitalism either....

On Earth, humans worked it all out.  No tyranny, no oppression, no conflict.  That allowed all those resources to be allocated toward better things, and I don't think that's political if you accept that premise that it just happened.

^
Yes, but just HOW it happened is where the politics creep in... there are widely divergent philosophies to just how that happened, but I'm fairly sure it didn't happen through an explosion of rampant, unregulated capitalism.   Such a system was reviled in TNG/DS9's Ferengi (another Roddenberry creation designed to mock the US' currency-based economy).

Sisko wasn't just a single dad.  He was a widower who raised his kid and instilled him with great values.

A widower with a son is still a single dad.   One is no more or less noble than the other.  

 And when it came time to war, he had the stomach and guts to do what had to be done, and understood that he was in charge and that a military is not a democracy. 

Democrats know how to fight wars, too.   FDR got the US into WW2 with Pearl Harbor, and Harry Truman (his successor) dropped two atomic bombs on Japan.   JFK's presidency saw the United States this [ ] close to WW3.

The Civil Rights Act of 1964 had more Republican support than Democrat support.

 Which saw the defection of many southern Democrats into what constitutes the core constituency of the modern Republican party.  The parties began to reverse polarity with each other long before then, as the northern states become increasingly progressive.

Racism does still exist, but it does so on both sides of the aisle.  I think conservatives and liberals have different ideas on what equal treatment means, but I don't feel that one side deserves more credit than the other on racial issues, and that in a world where there is true equality, that's neither a conservative nor liberal ideal.  I think it's an American one. 

^
Generally I agree with this statement, though I don't necessarily think that equality is solely the purview of America.   And yes, there is racism on both sides of the American political spectrum, I agree.  Sometimes it's not as overt, but it exists. 

And struggling to get back on track, if the new ST doesn't represent the core values of ST (its optimism, its inclusiveness, its celebration of both differences AND equality) then it's just a standard space opera.    These values are what separates Star Trek from most other space operas and MUST be present in the new show, in one way or another.  

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Sim   

Was Kirk modeled after JFK?  Is there evidence of that?  I'm curious.  That would be very interesting, because I feel that JFK's views are far more conservative than the democrat party today, and that he would likely be a Republican in 2016.  Either that, or the democrat party would be far more centrist. 

JFK would *definitely* not sympathize with today's Republicans -- the party of Trump, alt-right and the religious right. As far as I can tell.

But I agree he wouldn't have much sympathy for "identity politics"-focused "elitist" new leftists, either. So I see your point, JFK was not a modern day liberal -- but I disagree he'd rather be a modern day conservative (if modern day "conservatives" even still are "conservative", rather than just right-wing authoritarian).

If anything, I'd think JFK would be more along the lines of old school conservatives, before the GOP opened the gates to religious right, neo-cons or alt-right racists ... some of which are perhaps still lurking somewhere within the Republican party, except you hardly ever hear from them anymore.

 

 

I think arguments could be made one way or the other; Riker is clearly more reactionary than the more sagacious nature of Picard, for example.  But Picard is no slouch in military matters either.   As for Sisko being more conservative?  He's a single, African-American dad whose best friend was a slug living in a bisexual host ( ;)); but yeah, one sees what they want in these characters...in spite of the fact that these characters still reside within the very socialist/pro-humanist/progressive future envisioned by Roddenberry's (and others writers') legacy.    So yes, the characters may (arguably) lean one way or the other, but they ALL reside in a greater system that is obviously progressive and certainly recognizably socialist in nature (socialist as in an extension of current social policies all over the world, including the US; not communism... just to be clear).

Sisko wasn't just a single dad.  He was a widower who raised his kid and instilled him with great values.  African Americans can certainly be conservative.  And when it came time to war, he had the stomach and guts to do what had to be done, and understood that he was in charge and that a military is not a democracy.  Sometimes he pulled a Lincoln, and walked the line to protect the greater good.  I prefer to ignore the finale for Sisko because that was so out of character it really shouldn't destroy 7 years of great character development. 

Sisko is a great example how a ST character offers different aspects for both conservatives and liberals to identify with. You and Sehlat name the examples! :)

My impression is that TOS has elements of both, classic "liberal" and "conservative" elements:

The utopia, the world without poverty and racial discrimination, may be a "liberal" dream -- but it was realized via endless resources, via technological progress, not by socialist policies.

Again, speaking as one of the few conservatives on this board, I don't know if it's accurate to say that a world free of racial discrimination is solely a liberal ideal.  Conservatives believe in that too, and have led the way.  The Civil Rights Act of 1964 had more Republican support than Democrat support.  Desegregation began under Eisenhower.  Racism does still exist, but it does so on both sides of the aisle.  I think conservatives and liberals have different ideas on what equal treatment means, but I don't feel that one side deserves more credit than the other on racial issues, and that in a world where there is true equality, that's neither a conservative nor liberal ideal.  I think it's an American one. 

Well I guess "conservatives" and "conservatives" are two different things ... these binary terms are a bit imprecize anyway, just because of the bipartisan American system, very different kinds of ideologies are lumped together.

I guess "old school" conservatives indeed share this dream... but I doubt religious right "conservatives" do (they want to replance the freedom America was founded on with theocratic tyranny) or pro-Trump people and alt-right (who based their entire campaign on not even veiled racism, racial discrimination and white "identity politics" on the backs of all who are different. They are closer to Hitler's utopia than to Star Trek's).

 

 

And one minor thing--while the alt-right morons like Trump, they're in for a disappointment.  Trump is not one of them anymore than any of us are.  He even blasted them.  I don't think people realize that Trump really isn't much of a conservative either.  He's far more left than the press lets on, and he's probably the most centrist person in the White House since JFK.  He may govern more to the right because that's his base, but in theory, he'll probably govern closer to Clinton, except instead of a little left of center, he'll be a little right of center.

 

Well as I said, the terms are confusing. Perhaps we should define first what exactly we understand by "left".

Because based on my definition of left, I see absolutely nothing in Trump even remotely resembling leftist views. And I'm pretty sure a huge majority of American "liberals" will agree.

The bipartisan nature of the American system easily invites to making the assumption that any policy you don't agree with, must be "--other side--".

IMO, Trump is a third kind of animal, neither traditionally conservative, nor leftist.

In Germany, we had such a movement in the past: It combined far-right prejudice against minorities, racism and "white pride" ideology, right-wing nationalism and pro-military views, with an isolationist corporatist economic policy (no leftist nationalization of private businesses, but strict regulation, and national workers over free foreign trade), and used pro-"small man", pro-worker rhetorics to win votes, and skillfully made use of then new media (radio). It was called "National Socialism" or just "Nazism". Nazism was one specific ideology from the broader spectrum of fascism. Fascism was praised as a "third way", neither left wing nor right wing, back then.

Trump's movement and the alt-right employ basically the very same tactics and core points: They mimick leftist pro-worker slogans, but aren't leftist, because they do not share the left's idea of emancipation of minorities. They are hardcore nationalist and blame foreign scapegoats for the ills of domestic workers. They reject international free trade, but sell the message of "American workers first". They mock leftist ideas of equality of women in the most grotesque ways you can imagine ("grab her by the ****"). On foreign policy, they are isolationist, too: No more American engagement abroad, but rather selling out to foreign enemies such as Putin (or perhaps finding agreements with them, without asking any questions regarding human rights). And their focal point is an anti-establishment populism.

Over here, you often hear the term "right-wing populism" rather often for this new type of ideology -- and it's IMO fitting: It's definitely right-wing, but not traditionally conservative. The populist element is maybe the most defining one about them. Basically, it's "fascism light".

 

Trump's new "conservatism" is very different from all Presidents since WW2, Dem or Rep alike, insofar as it's isolationist: A roll back of American engagement abroad, a retreat from pro-international free trade and globalism.

IIRC, I read somewhere that someone called Trump's foreign policy ideas "Jacksonian". I cannot comment on that, as I know too few about Jackson's presidency. But it looks like Trump wants to bring back America to the point where it was in the 19th century, before it became a global power after WW2.

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Wow, this topic is massively derailed! It is no longer about Discovery and that rumor about it being darker. Whenever there is a hit 'dark show' on TV it seems everyone wants to go darker. Like many of you, I don't want too dark, too brooding, because that isn't fun. Also it might be the other ship is the darker one, with the Captain lady. That might be interesting. It is a concern that they have pulled it back to May and have let Fuller go. It would be interesting to know the 'real reasons' he decided on going.

I've never seen the West Wing, but it was clearly not Star Trek if they didn't let a politically on point equal cast play. It was about politics, hence the title, referring to the White House.

It would be an error of logic and discourse to confuse modern politics for that of even 20 years ago.

The Watts riots would have been fresh in the writers' minds on the show, but the first official episode did air some months after 1965 when the riots happened.

During the Nixon years, following Kennedy, he courted what they called the Dixie (demo)Crats, conservative middle of the road Democratic Southern Evangelicals mainly, and they became the modern far right conservatives, such as the so called Tea Party. Trump is not of this tea party, or of the other party. It seems he is of his own party. That is scary.

Progressive family values meant 'conservative values' in as close back as 1980s America, during the 'Just Say No' and the Reagan years. They evolved over only 30 years into the centrist conservative idealists, (yes we still exist), and they weren't too keen on Trump either. Usually the centrist conservative lean fiscally conservative and morally progressive. Many of them voted for Bernie Sanders in the primaries. (I did not). Hyper conservative relatives were annoyed I did not side with Trump and 'threw it away' to Stein. They immediately assume I am far right liberal when I am not. Not saying Reagan was the best ever either. He did a lot of things that were off too. He would have been considered a liberal by today's neo conservatives. He was right wing centrist.

Some liberal ideas are Star Trek ideas. The idea of then not having money, ergo no class based system, except for Starfleet. It is socialist. It's not the darker kind, but it is. They al work toward the common good and there is no super rich class.

Sisko struck me as a kind of Reagan type character, with a little bit of that cowboy thing going on.

Kirk is definitely modeled after JFK! That is so true! Straight from the horse's mouth. Go read the Shatner biography from the 1990s. Kirk played him like a Kennedy era ladies man cowboy.

Picard is more of a diplomat thinking man, so he seems if you were going to make an analogy to a President, like an early Obama, or since it started in the 1980s, he is a little like Bush Sr. and a little like Nancy Reagan. Not that Nancy wasn't at times annoying about her programs. He could even be a Roosavelt type a little.

Janeway was more like what would happen if Sarah Palin had become president. Oh no! No, actually she;s from a 1990s show, so she's Bill Clinton but without the scandals, or even Hillary Clinton, who did not become president.

Archer is at times like Bush and Bush Jr. He acts a lot like Bush Jr, but with the cleverness and intelligence of others. Okay so he looks 'swagger, mannerisms' like Bush but acted like Obama 'diplomacy, making allies'. Just the good parts.

Hopefully with this new actress we might see some kung fu or some other martial arts in Star Trek. I always liked it when they would spar on TNG and DS9. :)

 

 

 

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Was Kirk modeled after JFK?  Is there evidence of that?  I'm curious.  That would be very interesting, because I feel that JFK's views are far more conservative than the democrat party today, and that he would likely be a Republican in 2016.  Either that, or the democrat party would be far more centrist. 

I agree that the TOS characters had leanings one way or another, but one must remember that Kirk (who was clearly modeled after JFK) was a '60s ideal of a 'gunboat diplomacy' Democrat.  McCoy was a humanist.   Spock was professorial, but adhered to logic not necessarily politics.  As for the others?  I think one identifies with those elements one recognizes in themselves, true or not.   At any rate, ALL of these characters lived in a system without money, where everyone had full gender and racial equality, and everyone was assured of a free education if they wished it.   So whatever the individual leanings of TOS characters, they were all living within Roddenberry's arguably socialist utopia of his 23rd century (which, despite the military aspect of Starfleet, was very contrary to Republican values of the '60s and today).

I think it depends.  I think there are certainly many aspects of the culture that might not work with conservatives, but not all.  The Federation was very much based on US culture, which was not socialist.  Kirk was a proud American and adhered to the values this country is supposed to stand for.  For the most part, TOS didn't really cover the average life of a non-Starfleet person, so we really don't know, though there was some system of credits, which means there is some compensation.  I don't really see the TOS culture as conservative or liberal.  I see it as a world where humanity's biggest weakness, itself, has been solved, and anything was possible as a result. 

On Earth, humans worked it all out.  No tyranny, no oppression, no conflict.  That allowed all those resources to be allocated toward better things, and I don't think that's political if you accept that premise that it just happened.

 

I think arguments could be made one way or the other; Riker is clearly more reactionary than the more sagacious nature of Picard, for example.  But Picard is no slouch in military matters either.   As for Sisko being more conservative?  He's a single, African-American dad whose best friend was a slug living in a bisexual host ( ;)); but yeah, one sees what they want in these characters...in spite of the fact that these characters still reside within the very socialist/pro-humanist/progressive future envisioned by Roddenberry's (and others writers') legacy.    So yes, the characters may (arguably) lean one way or the other, but they ALL reside in a greater system that is obviously progressive and certainly recognizably socialist in nature (socialist as in an extension of current social policies all over the world, including the US; not communism... just to be clear).

Sisko wasn't just a single dad.  He was a widower who raised his kid and instilled him with great values.  African Americans can certainly be conservative.  And when it came time to war, he had the stomach and guts to do what had to be done, and understood that he was in charge and that a military is not a democracy.  Sometimes he pulled a Lincoln, and walked the line to protect the greater good.  I prefer to ignore the finale for Sisko because that was so out of character it really shouldn't destroy 7 years of great character development. 

My impression is that TOS has elements of both, classic "liberal" and "conservative" elements:

The utopia, the world without poverty and racial discrimination, may be a "liberal" dream -- but it was realized via endless resources, via technological progress, not by socialist policies.

Again, speaking as one of the few conservatives on this board, I don't know if it's accurate to say that a world free of racial discrimination is solely a liberal ideal.  Conservatives believe in that too, and have led the way.  The Civil Rights Act of 1964 had more Republican support than Democrat support.  Desegregation began under Eisenhower.  Racism does still exist, but it does so on both sides of the aisle.  I think conservatives and liberals have different ideas on what equal treatment means, but I don't feel that one side deserves more credit than the other on racial issues, and that in a world where there is true equality, that's neither a conservative nor liberal ideal.  I think it's an American one. 

 

And one minor thing--while the alt-right morons like Trump, they're in for a disappointment.  Trump is not one of them anymore than any of us are.  He even blasted them.  I don't think people realize that Trump really isn't much of a conservative either.  He's far more left than the press lets on, and he's probably the most centrist person in the White House since JFK.  He may govern more to the right because that's his base, but in theory, he'll probably govern closer to Clinton, except instead of a little left of center, he'll be a little right of center.

 

 

We agree on one thing in politics. Trump is not a conservative or a liberal. I don't even think he knows what he is. He can be all over the place in the same speech. I'm just worried he's got an awful lot of alt right in his staff.

It's kind of tough to pin TOS down to politics because the very meaning of liberal and conservatives have changed since then. Many people in the 1960's who were considered far right conservatives would be RINOs now. 

I don't want the new series to be too dark. I'd like to see optimistic forward thinking crew in a dark environment at times. 

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