Out the airlock

posted at 11:12 pm on October 27, 2006 by Bryan

Maybe it’s the mood that both an anvil of a headache and reading Mark Steyn’s America Alone have put me in, but when the circle were gathered and in the process of doing unto Jammer, I kept thinking “There are only so many young men of military age left in the colonies. You’re going to need this guy one day.”

What’s true in those colonies is also true in the colonies we currently call Europe — there’s a need for military age men and the will to fight, but neither are in evidence. In fact, if our moral betters on the left were really against colonialism and imperialism per se, they would be the ones raising the alarm at what Steyn sees going on across the continent. But they’re not, and I digress.

So in the wake of the occupation and collaboration, we get Truth and Reconciliation. Given the work I’ve been doing lately on collaborators during the last war, I found this part logically inevitable yet unsatisfying. The fact is, collaborators are untrustworthy and will collaborate again, given half a chance.

Like the Cylon occupation, there was a certain logic to collaborating with the Soviets during the Cold War. Collaborating was a way to get with what looked like the winning side. It was a way of buying security before your side fell. Among American elites as Vietnam fell and Watergate grew there was, then as there is now as Iraq teeters and the war looks daunting, a strain of defeatism in the face of what looked like a colossal enemy. For some, like Ronald Reagan, that strain had to be fought even while fighting the Soviets. For others, apparently Sen. Ted Kennedy among them, the logic of defeatism opened the path to collaboration. It was a way of getting on the winning side, and preserving his political viability. That move is as old as Josephus, and probably older. It shouldn’t shock us that some Americans were disposed to help the Soviets, and that some of those collaborators were in high positions. But it should shock us that average Americans keep the likes of Kennedy in power decade after decade. And anyway, so it was with the ambitious among the colonists on New Caprica. The collaborationists on New Caprica and in Washington turned out to be wrong, but Sen. Kennedy has yet to answer for his actions. His name will protect him.

I suppose BSG’s producers are making some moral equivalence connections between insurgents on New Caprica and Iraq, and the Iraqi police and military we are standing up as “collaborationists.” If that’s their intent, then they’re as morally muddled as anyone else in Hollywood. And they’re hopelessly mired in the kind of relativism that has got us to the point we’re at vis a vis the current world situation. So I hope that’s not their intent, though I suspect that it is. It’s lost on them that the insurgents in Iraq are either fighting to expand the jihad or to settle tribal scores. They’re aren’t preserving anything. It’s the Iraqis, whom the BSG producers would dub collaborationists, who risk their lives to stop the insurgents who are fighting and dying to preserve their country and way of life.

In all, the anvil headache held my attention better than BSG did tonight. The scenes with Baltar at least advanced toward the other logically inevitable turn, which is the revelation of his status as more than a run-of-the-mill collaborator.

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Am I going to have to start watching BSG? Is it REALLY that good?

pullingmyhairout on October 27, 2006 at 11:29 PM

**** SPOILER ALERT *****

I thought Zarek was the only sensible person in the episode tonight; and he’s the former terrorist! He was totally right to make the secret jury to convict the people and deal with the collaborators (what’s wrong with calling them traitors, eh?).

I found it REALLY hard to believe that Roslin could forgive the traitors so easily, especially after she was almost killed on the planet! Victim mentality. She’s always had it.

I’m glad Gaeta confessed to being the informant and was freed. Though, the way it happened, was obviously done to make you think that the juries were wrong. Since Starbuck did not tell everyone what he told her. So, her failure to bring out all she knew made the jury system wrong? No. Made her a bitch. I still have no respect for her. After moochin’ on the Cylon on the planet and now. I didn’t really like her before. I like her less now.

What happened to Sharon? Did she get off New Caprica? I didn’t see her tonight.

Do you think Gaius is a Cylon? I’m not sure about that, but he’s obviously turned traitor. For a hot chick – who looked a lot better in his dreams than in reality. Put some make-up on lady.

All in all, a very bleeding heart episode.

The scenic shots of the Cylon fleet (including the resurrection ship!) were cool; but overall. Ho-hum.

lorien1973 on October 27, 2006 at 11:31 PM

It really is that good.

Eric12470210 on October 27, 2006 at 11:33 PM

Lorien,

How can “moochin’” on the Cylon to drag him in close enough to stab him (and cruely twist the blade to make her point,… pun intended) be a bad thing?

If I was a woman with sex appeal I’d use it to kill my captors too.

~V5

V5 on October 27, 2006 at 11:50 PM

Remember in the hospital, she held the Cylon’s hand when the kid woke up. I don’t think she was as unfeeling as you’d like to believe there. I think she chose sides at the last second (the winning side, in this case) and killed him. And now, she’s broken up with her husband, too, over this. Are you sure what side she’s on?

lorien1973 on October 27, 2006 at 11:53 PM

“I found it REALLY hard to believe that Roslin could forgive the traitors so easily, especially after she was almost killed on the planet! Victim mentality. She’s always had it.”

Don’t Forget the other constraihnt.

There are only some 50,000 or so humans still alive. They don’t have humans to spare.

purpleslog on October 27, 2006 at 11:59 PM

Then they need to start making the babies! I would not count 100 or 200 traitors among those 50,000 people. Like Bryan said, they were traitors once; the second time will be a lot easier (given the opportunity).

lorien1973 on October 28, 2006 at 12:02 AM

Meanwhile, Apollo is off jumping rope so a crane and crowbar are not required to get him in a viper.

Not a bad episode. Baltar begins his assension to military leadership through a political struggle where who he sleeps with will play a role. I hope he gets an assistant that plays off the old one and answers everything with “by your command.”

sunny on October 28, 2006 at 12:02 AM

And Xena still is hot….

Mortis on October 28, 2006 at 12:09 AM

And Xena still is hot….

Mortis

And she can sing.

Benaiah on October 28, 2006 at 12:17 AM

Reconciliation commission? How lame is that? Seriously, its a scary day when Tom Zarek is the voice of reason. Also, Adama was a major league prick to Tigh in the CIC. He showed absolutely no respect for the work that was done in the trenches on New Caprica while he was safe in the Galactica.

Shivv on October 28, 2006 at 12:33 AM

I wouldn’t read too much into the plot of BSG. It is meant to clearly allude to current events, as it always it, but it is always screwed up enough (muddled, as you put it) that you can’t really tell what the point is. Even in tonights episode we were left wondering whether she agreed with Zarek’s reasoning regarding the secret trials. She just sort of nodded and turned away, then the scene ended.

And as you noted, Zarek was at one point a terrorist in the first season, and then we thought he was a sympathetic character making some political point about the GWOT. Now, he was on the other side of the coin.

In other words… don’t get too worked up.

DaveS on October 28, 2006 at 12:37 AM

The previews for next week were very interesting. Going to Earth?

mesablue on October 28, 2006 at 12:48 AM

I still maintain that they are now in, basically, a tribal or post tribal mode of society. In that case, loyalty is one of the most important characteristics to have–and to enforce. Some of the traitors needed to be dealt with. The show offered no necessary, unsympathetic characters to satisfy the bloodlust for revenge; even though there are usually at least a few who would relish filling that role (some true collaborators/traitors–not just relativists or those who embrace expediency, a la Baltar).

The amnesty plan was clever, but could only work in the aftermath of several disappearances that were already swirling around in the rumor mill. Treason is too devastating a crime to allow to pass with that much leniancy–without at least a few sacrificial lambs. And frankly, I don’t trust the producers or writers to accurately reflect the consequences of a scenario like this. But we’ll see where it ultimately goes.

urbancenturion on October 28, 2006 at 2:51 AM

Bryan, I hope you feel better soon.

You answered your own observation.

“There are only so many young men of military age left in the colonies. You’re going to need this guy one day.”

Yet …

The fact is, collaborators are untrustworthy and will collaborate again, given half a chance.

No one needs a traitor in their midst. Space ‘em all!

DannoJyd on October 28, 2006 at 2:58 AM

Well, it really was that good. This season, with ads distributed across incredibly short dramatic segments, it’s almost impossible to build (or sustain) any psychological momentum. Every time something’s actually about to happen, they pop tart you out of the mood completely.

BTW, the show gets a lot more interesting when you’re not trying to read it as commentary on current events — especially given the apparent concensus here that it doesn’t work terribly well on that level in the first place!

JM Hanes on October 28, 2006 at 3:31 AM

“Am I going to have to start watching BSG? Is it REALLY that good?”

It’s a soap opera, with 5 minutes of sci-fi scenes thrown in. Every character except Boomer will annoy you.

Do yourself a favor: watch Stargate, then turn off the TV :)

Kevin M on October 28, 2006 at 4:38 AM

This is a totally retarded question, but what channel is BSG on? Is it on broadcast TV? Cable?

Do they have any seasons on DVD yet?

And since it should be obvious that I am totally oblivious to BSG (due to my own laziness and sloth), which BSG character most closely represents the wretched collaborator Kennedy?

EFG on October 28, 2006 at 4:42 AM

Geeks.

/said lovingly

Ugly on October 28, 2006 at 6:24 AM

Bryan, the answer is No, the Europeons will NOT stand up and fight back against the islamic invasion. Euros don’t wanna been seen as ‘racist’ and would rather become dhimmis then to take on the title of racist. Even as the cylons … oooops, I mean muslims, burn down Euro cities, rape and murder Euro women and demand govt money, jobs and respect, the dhimmis close their eyes, plug their ears and say “I’m not a racist, I’m not a racist!” The few Euros with the balls to stand up and fight back are accused of being nazis and racist and worst of all (say it with a listhp) ‘insthensthative’.

Tony737 on October 28, 2006 at 6:45 AM

Reconciliation commission? How lame is that? Seriously, its a scary day when Tom Zarek is the voice of reason. Also, Adama was a major league prick to Tigh in the CIC. He showed absolutely no respect for the work that was done in the trenches on New Caprica while he was safe in the Galactica.

Shivv on October 28, 2006 at 12:33 AM

Tigh was out of line, for to him act that way, making a personal attack on someone in the CIC was way out of line, he should be more disciplined than that and Adama knew it and addressed it appropriately. I like Tigh, I dont if I like whats happening to him.

And the Eurabians who dont submit wont stand and fight, eventually our children will be faced with fighting this enemy and that pisses me off.

Viper1 on October 28, 2006 at 7:20 AM

I thought Zarek was the only sensible person in the episode tonight; and he’s the former terrorist! He was totally right to make the secret jury to convict the people and deal with the collaborators (what’s wrong with calling them traitors, eh?).

I found it REALLY hard to believe that Roslin could forgive the traitors so easily, especially after she was almost killed on the planet! Victim mentality. She’s always had it.

I think it makes sense, both Roslin and Zarek did what they had to do in order for everyone to move on.

Zarek made it possible to get rid of the worst of the worst, and Roslin got to come back into office with clean hands.

Zarek was right about trails tearing the fleet to pieces. Trials are just not an option when your dealing with as few people as they have. So Zarek made it possible to get rid of the worst of the collaborators.

Roslin made is possible for everyone to move forward.

E L Frederick on October 28, 2006 at 9:08 AM

This is a totally retarded question, but what channel is BSG on? Is it on broadcast TV? Cable?

Do they have any seasons on DVD yet?

EFG on October 28, 2006 at 4:42 AM

It’s on SciFi… which is cable/sat.

Yes, has severals DVDs out… Season 1, Season 2.0 and Season 2.5. Don’t ask they they broke it up to 2.0/2.5 I don’t get it. But they halved the second season into two DVD sets. Luckily they cost about 1/2 of what a single CSI season set costs.

E L Frederick on October 28, 2006 at 9:11 AM

They also show it in high def on Universal HD. Don’t know when they will do that again, it’s in the off-season for the one on Sci Fi channel.

MamaAJ on October 28, 2006 at 9:20 AM

Lots of stuff to talk about here…

Zarek was right…as was Roslin. Zarek’s star chamber probably took out the most obnoxious collaborators such as Jammer. (By the way, I don’t know about you all, but I didn’t buy for a moment his lame defense that he saved Cally–the only reason he saved her was because he knew her personally. The other guy had it right when he pointed to all those others that he killed. He’s like the SS officer who spares the one person for whatever reason and then guns down all those strangers. Jammer got what was coming to him.) Remember there were at least 21 disappearances–and wouldn’t take long for people in the fleet to figure out that these were collaborators and to have a pretty good idea as to what happened to them. Zarek’s star chamber justice did what he had intended: it satisfied the people’s need for justice…and vengeance…with minimal disruptions to the order of the fleet. However, I will disagree with Zarek in one thing: you needed one open trial where a collaborationist would be found either guilty or innocent–Gaeta would have worked out either way here–if he’s found guilty, it allows people to vent their anger publicly out on him and if found innocent it puts people in a state of mind more amenable to reconciliation. In any event, the people in the fleet needed to get all the anger and emotion out of their systems before moving on to Roslin’s reconciliation.

But Roslin is also right in that there has to be reconciliation or the fleet will tear itself apart. That’s why you couldn’t have the special prosecutor and a series of open trials or, as Zarek pointed out, Roslin’s term would have been filled with nothing but death warrants. The fleet has to move on beyond what’s happened and for it to do that it needs to either immediately execute or exile everyone who was a collaborator or it needs to effect a reconciliation.

BTW, the show gets a lot more interesting when you’re not trying to read it as commentary on current events — especially given the apparent concensus here that it doesn’t work terribly well on that level in the first place!

This is most definitely true–especially as current events really aren’t playing that much of a major role in the story arc. I recall reading from another message board–it might have been on this one, but I doubt it–that the wife of one of the writers has stated that events in Iraq really aren’t the driving engine for this story arc–that what the writers were really looking at was Vichy and Occupied France. When you look at it from that perspective, then much of what’s happened in the story to date falls into place much more readily. The best way to approach this story is to leave what’s going on in the world today behind and watch the show on its own terms.

Regarding Starbuck: On a thread on another bulletin board (TrekBBS–yes I am that big a geek), a poster brought up a pretty good point–that Kara is bi-polar manic-depressive. I think that’s a pretty good diagnosis and explains a lot regarding her character and her actions.

As to the scene between Tigh and Adama: Adama was right to call Tigh out on his conduct. Making the personal attack on Gaeta was bad enough (although understandable), but remember he also took a dig at Helo when he said that he was still the XO regardless of what that “toaster lover” thinks. If Adama doesn’t deal with that–and a whole lot of other command issues that are going to come up as a result of conflicts between those from New Caprica who are reintegrating back into the fleet and are expecting to come back with their old ranks and titles reestablished and those who stayed with the fleet–then he’s going to have some real problems. Helo, Kat, Lee, Dualla–have all earned their positions, to have them stripped of rank and position because Tigh, Starbuck, or someone else wants their old job back is going to create problems.

As for the new BSG: It really is that good. It is very strongly character driven, and that might not appeal to everyone. But still–it probably is one of the best shows on television right now–scifi or non-scifi.

As regards the Europeans: Mark Steyn has it right–they’re doomed and the sooner we face up to that–the better. As I said in another thread, we need to prepare ourselves for a flood of European refugees; do what we can to preserve or record our cultural heritage before the barbarians destroy it; and think what we’re going to do to either neutralize or secure the French and British nuclear arsenals should they fall into Islamic hands. Tempus fugit.

Matt Helm on October 28, 2006 at 9:28 AM

I would have enjoyed it a lot more if I’d thought for a second that they might kill Gaeta. Knowing they wouldn’t made it a bit tedious in places. Zarek seems to get the fact that they are in a war for survival and decided to be with the humans, not against (some of) them. Good choice.

MamaAJ on October 28, 2006 at 9:32 AM

Regarding Starbuck: On a thread on another bulletin board (TrekBBS–yes I am that big a geek), a poster brought up a pretty good point–that Kara is bi-polar manic-depressive. I think that’s a pretty good diagnosis and explains a lot regarding her character and her actions.

Maybe, be there isn’t enough beer in the world to fix what she’s been through. It’s gonna take her quite a while to locate her head.

E L Frederick on October 28, 2006 at 10:21 AM

As a Bipolar myself, I think you may be on to something.

Her mood swings are legendary.

She was always my Favorite. Now, this is even more true!!!

JayHaw Phrenzie on October 28, 2006 at 10:45 AM

Im so glad youve decided to continue this Bryan, thanks!!

Viper1 on October 28, 2006 at 11:22 AM

The death squad may have been “wrong” but I can understand why it was done as treason shouldn’t be so easily forgiven. Zarek did what had to be done and as someone else mentioned allows Roslin to take control with clean hands. I’m not sure if her pardon will fly well with those still bitter about the treatment from some of their fellow humans but I guess we’ll just have to wait and see what happens.

Yakko77 on October 28, 2006 at 11:56 AM

BSG has degenerated into a morals play on the war by far-Left Hollywood activists.

This episode simultaneously tweaked the issues of “death squads” in Iraq and military commissions in Guantanamo.

It’s all about sapping our resolve by asking us to question whether our “values” comport with action on the ground.

Anil Petra on October 28, 2006 at 12:02 PM

Perhaps, in next week’s episode:

“In the days before elections for the Council of the Twelve, the rag-tag fleet is rocked by candidate’s fictional writings that question the divinity of the Gods.”

ripped from the headlines!

Anil Petra on October 28, 2006 at 12:13 PM

Anil, have you been a frequent watcher? if not I would say think about Vichy france more than current headlines though the similarities will still be there, I think youll find the same thing in every theater of human conflict.

Viper1 on October 28, 2006 at 12:30 PM

Yes I have been. Disagree about Vichy france for various historical reasons. But more to the point: BSG is a moral play not about “every theater of human conflict” in human history, but about what’s going on now, the War on Terror/in Iraq.

The show jumped the shark when it became so easy and acceptable — overnight (for viewers) — for the colonial “resistance” to kill its own, verses cold metal.

Having “a year pass” and avoid the issue of how such a transformation might occur was a cheap shot.

Anil Petra on October 28, 2006 at 12:42 PM

BSG has degenerated into a morals play on the war by far-Left Hollywood activists.

This episode simultaneously tweaked the issues of “death squads” in Iraq and military commissions in Guantanamo.

It’s all about sapping our resolve by asking us to question whether our “values” comport with action on the ground.

Anil Petra on October 28, 2006 at 12:02 PM

true but most of the best sci-fi has been, so there is a long tradition of it.

Why death squads in Traq? There were death squads in post-Vichy France. And Nuremburg was one big military commission, so these things have been around a lot longer than our current engagement in Iraq. Sci-fi (indeed all fiction) gives writers a way of bringing out these concepts into different contexts to see if they still seem valid. Frankly, I think GWB is right about Iraq and Guantanamo (and, sorry, not much else besides the taxes issue). Ultimately, BSG can be said to be compelling precisely because it has fomented discussion; i.e., we (and many others) are here (or there, respectively) talking about it.

urbancenturion on October 28, 2006 at 12:45 PM

It’s a pity this forum is moderated or has some other factor delaying the posting of comments. Prevents a cluster-burst of back and forth by a handful of users who happen to be on at the same time, with a common interest.

Anil Petra on October 28, 2006 at 1:05 PM

Did you all see this?

http://www.slate.com/id/2151425

Anil Petra on October 28, 2006 at 1:06 PM

BSG has degenerated into a morals play on the war by far-Left Hollywood activists.

This episode simultaneously tweaked the issues of “death squads” in Iraq and military commissions in Guantanamo.

It’s all about sapping our resolve by asking us to question whether our “values” comport with action on the ground.

While I have absolutely no problem slamming Hollywood when it deserves it–and it frequently does, in this instance I don’t think that’s what the writers were aiming for. As pointed out above, death squads and secret tribunals were seen throughout liberated Europe and suicide raids and bombings weren’t unknown either–albeit they were rare.

In many ways, the circle on Galactica was more than anything else, a commentary on star chamber justice–and as Zarek pointed out in a very well done scene, it did have its place. I think it’s a safe assumption that, with the exception of Gaeta, all those convicted were guilty. As Zarek pointed out, instead of them getting a theater and being made either martyrs or inciting public opinion into a lynching frenzy, they died alone in the dark–a fitting punishment for them. You’ll also note that neither Roslin nor Adama mount a really effective counter to Zarek’s argument. I think what the writers are saying here is that there are times in which tribunals such as the circle–or military commissions such as at Guantanamo–is what has to be done–but that there is also a need to be very careful about it because these things do tend to take on a life of their own. Wise advice if you ask me.

As regards GWB and the War on Terror–I agree with urbancenturion–I agree with the President about both Iraq and Guantanamo–although there are things I might have done differently on a tactical level–but that’s neither here nor there–on the whole, I’d much rather be fighting the jihadists over there than over here and there can be no other acceptable outcome other than victory.

Matt Helm on October 28, 2006 at 1:07 PM

OK, I recorded it, watched it this AM , recognized a couple of the ??people/actors/cylons from 20 years ago but was still pretty much LOST! Sooooo,
Off to the library to get season one, disc one and two.

And I’ll hold each and every one of you responsible if I get hooked and wast hours of my oh so precious time on this silly show.
P.S. was that Starbuck, the original? What was his partners name? Is he still around? or did he get ‘spaced’?

shooter on October 28, 2006 at 1:09 PM

Vichy? Some here are forgetting about the suicide bombing, and the explicit discussion of a justification for it.

“No different than any of the other one-way missions I’ve sent young men on” or some such, Col. Tigh.

And how about the “I’ll join you soon”, said the suicide bomber to a vision of his dead wife.

Anil Petra on October 28, 2006 at 1:09 PM

shooter be prepared for sleep depravation.

infidel on October 28, 2006 at 1:14 PM

In the original, Starbuck was a guy and Apollo was played by Richard Hatch, who plays Zarek in this version.

Whew. Took the kids to ballet and soccer this morning and now get the chance to be around my fellow geeks and read some news!

MamaAJ on October 28, 2006 at 1:15 PM

It’s a pity this forum is moderated or has some other factor delaying the posting of comments.

It’s because of your username. Something about it is setting off our moderation filter. If you’d like to change it, e-mail me and I’ll set you up with a new one.

Allahpundit on October 28, 2006 at 1:18 PM

Oh Yeah, thanks MAMA.
That was almost 30 years ago.
So Starbuck is a chick woman now? or a cylon or ???

shooter on October 28, 2006 at 1:22 PM

Starbuck is all woman now. Maybe a cylon?

infidel on October 28, 2006 at 1:25 PM

Oh Yeah, thanks MAMA.
That was almost 30 years ago.
So Starbuck is a chick woman now? or a cylon or ???

Starbuck is a woman and that’s her call sign. Her name is Kara Thrace played by the lovely Katie Sackhoff. She’s not a cylon, but Grace Park who plays Boomer aka Sharon Valerii is.

Be sure you get the miniseries along with the first and second season dvds. And yes, sometimes you do need a scorecard to tell the players :)

Matt Helm on October 28, 2006 at 1:26 PM

I’d better catch up. The local library DOES have DVD’s , yeah no waiting.

shooter on October 28, 2006 at 1:27 PM

If the cylons and the colonials are heading to earth, does that mean earth has to deal with illegal immigration again?

Defector01 on October 28, 2006 at 1:33 PM

Uh, “Allahpundit”, I choose to go by my own name online. Perhaps you ought to have a word with your back-end people if they have a problem with my proper name.

Anil Petra on October 28, 2006 at 2:27 PM

“Don’t ask they they broke it up to 2.0/2.5 I don’t get it.”

Because the Sci-Fi channel has always released their “seasons” in two parts with a long break in between. And just for the record, Stargate and the Atlantis spin off suck, unless you like hand-wringing, moaning, whining, guilt-ridden liberals. The Stargate shows are Roddenberry all over again.

rightwingprof on October 28, 2006 at 2:28 PM

OK, I recorded it, watched it this AM , recognized a couple of the ??people/actors/cylons from 20 years ago but was still pretty much LOST! Sooooo,
Off to the library to get season one, disc one and two.

And I’ll hold each and every one of you responsible if I get hooked and wast hours of my oh so precious time on this silly show.
P.S. was that Starbuck, the original? What was his partners name? Is he still around? or did he get ’spaced’?

shooter on October 28, 2006 at 1:09 PM

Get the Mini series to start and then move forward from there, you will have more complete picture..

Viper1 on October 28, 2006 at 2:29 PM

Uh, Anil, there’s no need to get snotty. It’s an automated algorithm; no one has a “problem” with your name. You want to stick with it instead of trying a different username? No prob. Just expect the occasional delay in your comments appearing.

Allahpundit on October 28, 2006 at 2:30 PM

For those interested in very good science fiction written from a conservative point of view I would recommend the following:

Robert Heinlein–while best known for Starship Troopers, he also wrote a very good future history where the moon was explored and colonized by private enterprise.

Poul Anderson–his Polesotechnic League and Terran Empire series are chock full of conservative themes–especially that of free trade and enterprise as the moving engine behind technological and social progress and centralized government as a suffocating entity.

Gordon R. Dickson–his Dorsai series is a great work.

Jerry Pournelle–The Mote in God’s Eye which he coauthored with Larry Niven and several other works also approach the future from a conservative slant.

There most definitely is a place for conservatives in science fiction.

Matt Helm on October 28, 2006 at 2:56 PM

The left is hearing way different messages from this episode than some of us think.

Gunning down Gaeta: How Dems might execute those who helped

Ellen Tigh is a metaphor for…Daschle Dems.

Felix Gaeta is a metaphor for patriotic Republicans who helped from within.

of course Ellen thought she was doing good in some sense. Dem collaborators know it’s just about the money.

rw on October 28, 2006 at 3:00 PM

It kills me how people just so easily tag this show as being “Leftist Hollywood” and all the stuff. People, don’t assume, do a little research first, because you all know what happens when you assume. . .

Anyways, before you keep on complaining on how much the whole third season has been entirely about Iraq, do yourself a favor and please listen to the official podcasts first. In them, Ron Moore goes on to explain that while the episodes are somewhat influenced by Iraq, it not as much as we make it out to be, because we do tend to exaggerate it because it’s something that we see on TV now and can draw parallels to. Moore goes on to say that he was mainly influenced my events in Europe during both of the World Wars.

And for those of you who say what about the night vision scene? And I say what about it? Just because they used NVGs, doesn’t mean that they’re making reference to Iraq at all. Moore also commented on this that he simply did this because he liked the look it gave the scene, and since the ability to shoot in night vision was an option, he decided to use it.

ViperPilot on October 28, 2006 at 3:03 PM

And just for the record, Stargate and the Atlantis spin off suck, unless you like hand-wringing, moaning, whining, guilt-ridden liberals. The Stargate shows are Roddenberry all over again.

Atlantis, maybe.

Jack O’Neill and now the new guy blasting all the bad guys in the universe while making wry comments seems like the opposite of liberalism to me. Sure, in the Ori, they’ve created a religious enemy, but it compares more to extremist Islamism than anything else. The hand wringers and the whiners always seem to lose out to SG-1.

I came late to Stargate so my DVR fills up every day with old shows with O’Neill goodness.

mesablue on October 28, 2006 at 3:04 PM

E L Frederick, MamaAJ, thanks for the info about the cable channel location.

EFG on October 28, 2006 at 3:19 PM

So where were we on our last (and first) episode of Battlestar Hotairica? Oh yeah, now I remember, the democrats underJohn Bolterry had surrendered to the cylamo-fascists and I was Commander Malkin’s husband and um, well, the rest of you guys are on your own, good luck with that cylon war and everything!

Tony737 on October 28, 2006 at 3:35 PM

What’s true in those [BSG] colonies is also true in the colonies we currently call Europe — there’s a need for military age men and the will to fight, but neither are in evidence.

I wonder what the possibilities are for providing paramilitary leadership training and arms training to whatever small fraction of European young men have started thinking ahead.

Kralizec on October 28, 2006 at 3:54 PM

I thought Zarek was the only sensible person in the episode tonight; and he’s the former terrorist! He was totally right to make the secret jury to convict the people and deal with the collaborators (what’s wrong with calling them traitors, eh?).

If he was totally right, Gaeta would be dead. The guy who got them off New Caprica would be dead.

I would have enjoyed it a lot more if I’d thought for a second that they might kill Gaeta. Knowing they wouldn’t made it a bit tedious in places.

I might have been as sure as you were, before Tigh’s wife…

Jim Treacher on October 28, 2006 at 4:17 PM

BSG has degenerated into a morals play on the war by far-Left Hollywood activists.

It’s far-left guys from Canada, but I don’t understand what you mean. It can’t degenerate to a position that it started from. I had to stop watching when the kissy-huggy teacher became President in the first season (someone please kill her! In the movie of course). It was a great disservice to our women to present such a weak-minded one as an example of what a female would do as the Commander in Chief. It’s still TiVo’d for the kids, and I’m often forced to watch. It always disappoints.

Stargate and the Atlantis spin off suck, unless you like hand-wringing, moaning, whining, guilt-ridden liberals.

Wow, I don’t see that. Yeah SG-1 isn’t as good as when MacGuyver was in it, and the lady who heads Atlantis is guaranteed to worry about people dying whenever the wind blows (

Col. Shepard: I’m going to the bathroom.
Elizabeth Weir: Make sure no civilians are hurt while you do that!

) but mostly they just meet new aliens, and kill bad guys. There’s nothing liberal about that. I might agree with you if they met new bad guys and hugged them…

Kevin M on October 28, 2006 at 4:55 PM

I liked the Star Chamber and the decisions being made. It looks to me like they are making the case that the worst has happened to pull together and get ON with it!
The reconciliation and rapport developing between Pres Roslyn and Zarek is really interesting. The Gaeta angle was compelling too.
Suspend the real life comparisons and enjoy a great Sci-Fi show!

labwrs on October 28, 2006 at 5:56 PM

Kevin,

The kissy-huggy-teacher-President is (like so many other aspects of the show are) not so obviously leftist. She outlawed abortion–and the show didn’t even establish any exception (health-of-the-mother, etc.).

She also seems to relish blowing the enemy out of airlocks.

urbancenturion on October 28, 2006 at 6:04 PM

Vichy? Some here are forgetting about the suicide bombing, and the explicit discussion of a justification for it.

If you think that suicide bombing is something new and has happened only in Iraq, then you’d be wrong. Read about the Algerian War for Independance. There was rampant acts of terrorism and an occasional suicide bombing done by both sides during the conflict.

ViperPilot on October 28, 2006 at 6:12 PM

No thanks, Allahpundit. I’m not the one being snotty, if you expect me to use a false name online. I’d rather not participate than have your back-end treat my name with disrespect, um, like a “back-end”.

Anil Petra on October 28, 2006 at 6:22 PM

Wow, I’m the exact opposite Anil. Allahpundit, my nickname is too close to my real (and secret) name. Please change it to ‘Mr. Masterson’ so no one will figure out my true identity. Thanks in advance!

Viperpilot, all I’m saying is that I’m disappointed that the teacher woman is still alive in the show. Can’t someone kill her off? Also, please kill off Apollo, and the guy who used to be Apollo, and Bartok(sp?), and Adama, and Adama’s kid. Replace them with Boomer clones. Is that so much to ask? ;)

Kevin M on October 28, 2006 at 7:43 PM

When MacGuyver was on Stargate

That’s funny, on the blooper show McNiel said “I don’t know what to do.” The girl says “Oh come on! You were MacGuyver for SEVEN YEARS! Get some duct tape and and chewing gum and MAKE US A BOMB!”

That show WAS pretty cool, U.S. Air Force Spec Ops shootin’ aliens with our “projectile weapons”. But then they (I hate this expression) “jumped the shark” by replacing the lead character. And Atlantis is just plain stoopit.

While we’re at it, I know TRUE Star Trek fans hated “Enterprise” but I guess that’s why I liked it. (Best opening of any show on TV) Still not as good as “Space: Above and Beyond” Imagine R. Lee Emory yelling: “I’m here to turn you slimey civilians INTO UNITED STATES MARINE CORPS SPACE AVIATORS!” Classic.

Tony737 on October 28, 2006 at 7:51 PM

No thanks, Allahpundit. I’m not the one being snotty, if you expect me to use a false name online. I’d rather not participate than have your back-end treat my name with disrespect, um, like a “back-end”.

Anil Petra on October 28, 2006 at 6:22 PM

Anil, are you serious? No one is disrespecting your name. AP isn’t. HotAir isn’t. He said that their spam/moderation filter is acting twitchy with your name. The spam/moderation filter is a program. It isn’t a human being. I’ll bet dollars to donuts that AP isn’t a computer programers. He can’t change that. Probably no-one can.

Relax. Have a beer. Or if you’re Russian, have a shot of vodka. And if you’re buying shots, I’ll join you at the bar. OK?

EFG on October 28, 2006 at 9:02 PM

Are you guys serious about Roslin? I might have agreed with you in Season 1, but in Season 2 she was a different person. Remember, she’s the one that convinced Adama that he would have to kill Admiral Cain (which he wimped out on). She’s also the one who orchestrated the theft of Sharon’s baby. And, as others have mentioned, she has no problem with putting a Cylon out the airlock.

Also, getting political for a moment, I dont see suicide bombings as per se evil. We’ve seen them used for evil purposes by Islamic terrorists (mainly to kill civilians). But if the only way to kill Osama was to send someone in to blow himself up, I honestly wouldn’t have a real problem with it (assuming that the would-be bomber was a volunteer with full knowledge of the mission). It would pain me to know we had to purposely lose one of our men to kill him, but I don’t think it would be an evil act. As Tigh said, its no different than sending troops off on a near impossible mission. And, as far as we saw, the New Caprica resistance never targeted civilians. They targeted the NCP graduation, although Baltar was the actual target. They then targeted a power station, where only (if I recall correctly) 3 humans were killed.

Shivv on October 28, 2006 at 9:42 PM

Not to mention that she had the balls to steal the election for the right reasons, because she knew that Balthar was a traitor viz. the cylons. Roslin is great, and the actress who plays her does a fine job.

Alcibiades on October 28, 2006 at 11:27 PM

It did cross my mind that the writers might have been reaching for some kind of parallel between the Galactica “Circle” and Gitmo tribunals…but, as has been the case several times during the whole “New Caprica” cycle, I just as quickly found myself dismissing such notions. They couldn’t really be that stupid and still handle everything else so well, could they? Whatever one thinks of the methodology of the BSG trials, the people being blown out the launch tubes were still people–which would correlate them with American citizens, not captured foreign enemies (or even suspected enemies). It’s only if Cylons were being judged and spaced, not collaborators, that one could even begin to draw meaningful Gitmo parallels.

(The “New Caprica” cycle does somewhat meaningfully parallel occupied France. That mostly works; Palestine/Iraq/Guantanamo simply doesn’t. And yeah, the France thing isn’t perfect, either–with at least multiple hundreds left dead on New Caprica, I couldn’t help but cringe at the notion of the gene pool getting a little more shallow each time the launch tube fired. At least the French didn’t have that to worry about–well, at least not in the 1940′s.)

As for Roslin, she’s a genuinely wonderful character. There seems at least some evidence that in the old world she was quite the dutiful liberal (maybe there are conservative pro-abortion federal education bureaucrats with general feelings of antipathy towards the military out there, but I’d be surprised). Thrust into a stark survival situation, however, she’s found and continues to find that much of what she once took for granted is actually far from realistic. In fact, if there’s an argument to be made that the show actually leans slightly conservative, I think it might best be found here: President Roslin is the Mother of all Security Moms.

Blacklake on October 29, 2006 at 2:27 AM

“Not to mention that she had the balls to steal the election for the right reasons”

Bah. I saw those ones. She battled with what should have been a one second decision for tho whole shows. The women I know are not so slow to do what’s necessary. Maybe I’m just misogynistic against what Canadian sci-fi writers think is female, but they always have such weak-minded women, worry worry worrying. Haven’t any of them ever been married? Women are much stronger than that nowadays. Probably always have been. To be fair, I’m not a fan of their wussification of guys either, exemplified in Star Trek’s Voyager, Deep Space Nine, and for the most part, TNG.

And Shiw, I’m not sure why tossing a cylon out an airlock is proof of toughness, or anything really. I threw a machine in the garbage just this morning (the answering machine… it hung up on people early. Had to go) but don’t feel that I deserve any special respect for doing so :).

Admittedly, I often walk out of the room when the english teacher does her scene, but it’s justified. We waited an entire year for something to happen of importance on that show, and nothing did. A year of episodes where she and Adama disagreed with tactics or something, followed by Adama and his kid disagreeing about something, followed by someone else disagreeing with another person about something, followed by… understanding (sheesh!). And all the while, no sci-fi!

If I accidentally hear one more *itch session between Adama and his son, I’m going to shoot someone’s TV (not mine, I don’t have the spare cash to replace it). j/k

This show is among the all-time greatest of science fiction disappointments. I could understand that they made the robots look like people to save some money, but come on. Over-exposure/high-contrast doesn’t make a series sci-fi. They can make it a soap opera show where person x backstabs person y every other week, and guilt abounds, and even add confused angst to every single character (they did!), but not without lots of space duels and robots/aliens. Heck, I’d rather watch 1960′s Dr. Who. At least they tried to make it look futuristic.

Kevin M on October 29, 2006 at 2:51 AM

tho=two. sorry.

Kevin M on October 29, 2006 at 2:52 AM

Kevin, if you dislike the series so much, then why do you even bother clicking on the link to discussions such as this one??

ViperPilot on October 29, 2006 at 3:10 AM

If the Cylons were exactly the same from the original show: metallic monsters with no personality, the show would be even more of the Colonists interacting only with themselves. The 12 different versions of human-appearing toasters plus the angle of their being God-driven really makes the show something unique. If the show was all space combat and less character development, we wouldn’t care what happened to them and there would be no speculation on how people will react in a given situation. Was there ever a doubt how the original Apollo, Starbuck, and Adama would act in any situation? Tigh and Starbuck are my favorite characters because events are really changing their lives. Unlike every bad Roddenberry production ever made where the characters are set in amber from the pilot episode on.

My biggest concern is that some day their won’t be new episodes of BSG and I’ll have to go back to watching terrible TV that revels in insulting my intelligence.

PeteRR on October 29, 2006 at 4:40 AM

I hope everyone patting Tom Zerick on the back for putting due process and peoples rights under the articles of colonisation on the shelf becuase he’s got his undies in a twist and wants some payback, realise exactly what he was doing. For all of Che Gue-Zerick’s pontificating, he is exactly what he hated about the Colonial government, before and after the cylon attack (I’m talking mini-series).

The Gitmo tribunales were never taksed with flash-boiling a persons blood out through their ears.

And what about season two when Adama led a Coup de tat right before he was shot? Half the fleet left with Rozalyn when she escaped; witch half the fleet was guilty of treason then? Rozalyn did the right thing, she chose life.

Starbuck needs to get her s**t together…. Ron Moore writign her into this crap is starting to make me miss Dirk Benadict. Kate Sachoff is good at it, but come on….

liquidflorian on October 29, 2006 at 4:42 AM

Kevin, if you dislike the series so much, then why do you even bother clicking on the link to discussions such as this one?

Because I love science fiction and will talk about it for hours even when no one is listening. Plus it’s always fun to ‘vent’ :). I assume I’m not making anyone angry, after all it’s just a tv show. If I am, let me know and I’ll stop.

Hope not though! Because I have a new gripe about it. Why does everyone sit/stand directly under a spotlight so half of their face is faded to white? I’m not sure I would want to live in a world where everyone has to live under floodlights that make it difficult to see.

If the show was all space combat and less character development, we wouldn’t care what happened to them and there would be no speculation on how people will react in a given situation.

Odd that you would say that, because I cared more about the original cast than I do about these guys, and didn’t have any empathy for the cylons in either series. In fact, I care so little for most of them that I called for them to be killed off of the show just a few posts back! Now that the english teacher is going to be President again, I’d add that she should be killed off, and then her coffin should be shot into the sun for good measure. Just a thought.

Kevin M on October 29, 2006 at 7:56 AM

One of the things I like so much about the new BSG is that I can’t 100% support any particular character through the entire show. Tigh started out as a weakminded drunk with no control in his relationship with his wife. Lee freaking mutinied. Zarek alternately tried to have Lee and Adama killed, and possibly saved the fleet with the star chambers – as awful as they were. Was Starbuck right to disobey Adama and obey Roslin when she was sent after the arrow of Apollo? Roslin’s insistence on cutting and running in the initial attack by the cylons probably saved humanity, over Adama’s objections. Hell, there are even times when I’ve thought Balthar was in the right – he shot Crashdown on Kobol.

When I start to see possible parallels between the show and current events, I ignore it. I don’t see enough similarities for it work. Instead I take the show as it is – an engrossing space opera with no clear cut signs pointing out who is the hero and who is the villain.

celeste on October 29, 2006 at 9:57 AM

Celeste, part of it is that it’s a tv show. So the main characters have to behave in ways that keep them interesting. (Which is why I usually couldn’t watch David E. Kelly shows for more than a couple seasons; I tire of watching outrageous events happen to lawyers every week.)

But I’ve found the BG characters to be more believable than most. Of course dramatic things are happening every week, they’re in a war in space. Lee seems to try to do the right thing, regardless of the rules.

Baltar does what’s best for Baltar. Crashdown was going to get them all killed.

Roslyn didn’t start off strong, but she was close (ahem) to the old President and understood politics and power pretty well. Just took her a little time to get used to practicing politcal hardball.

BTW, I just don’t get what that cylon was trying to do with Starbuck. Okay, he broke her, got his way, fullfilled his vision, but why? Did I miss something that explained why?

MamaAJ on October 29, 2006 at 11:44 AM

MamaAJ – but that’s precisely what Star Trek and the old BSG did not do. You could always trust Capt Kirk to behave in a certain way, and you likewise didn’t find yourself questioning what you would have done in the same situation in the old BSG episodes. The good guys are always the good guys, the bad guys always bad. The new BSG keeps forcing you to redraw the lines of support.

celeste on October 29, 2006 at 12:26 PM

On the suicide bombings, I was terrified the first couple of episodes in season 3 that this great show would degenerate into partisan hackery. But the explanaition given by Col. Tigh when confronted, that he had often sent his uniformed men out on what was de facto suicide missions in war, settled me a great deal. It was all about diverting attention, keeping the cylons busy, to ease the second exodus. Poor guy though, having excecuted his wife and suddenly all traitors are given amnesty. No wonder he’s more flaky than usual.

xyan on October 29, 2006 at 12:53 PM

The cylon with starbuck was trying to get her to love him. If you go back to the earlier episodes there’s this love theme going on. That was the whole story with Boomer and Helo on Caprica. The cylons wanted to make babies but were unable to – so they thought love was the missing piece. On Caprica, Boomer says that I’m getting him to fall in love with me.

hotdax on October 29, 2006 at 1:33 PM

You know it’ll be intersting if when the Cyloins and the Colonials finally find Earth, the find the Earthlings living in peace with their AIs.

Iblis on October 29, 2006 at 3:08 PM

It is interesting to see people discussing the fine points of character behavior in a show with script witers who obviously don’t have a clue about the real world. They have written so many things that “just could not happen” into the script that they have totally distroyed the show.

duff65 on October 29, 2006 at 4:17 PM

I hear that in following episode Harlan Ellison and Borat crash land a LEM on top of the ship and duel for control of the script with zero-g silly string. That turns our to be uncannily compressed ‘string’ theory material which alters the plot into that of a Flatland parallel universe where …

(STAY TUNED NEXT TIME FOR THE THRILLING CONCLUSION!)

profitsbeard on October 29, 2006 at 11:52 PM

They have written so many things that “just could not happen” into the script that they have totally distroyed the show.

Like faster-than-light travel?

Blacklake on October 30, 2006 at 12:46 AM

Like faster-than-light travel?

For even the smallest fighter. I guess FTL is easier than we thought. ;}

PeteRR on October 30, 2006 at 12:50 AM

Predictions for next week’s episode. Possible spoilers!

-The english teacher will worry if she’s doing the right thing becoming president again.
-Adama’s kid will not like Adama some more.
-3 different people will stare at at least 4 people for more than 4 seconds without saying anything.
-Boltar will worry. The girl in his head will condole, and possibly offer ways to make him seem more evil.
-1 Boomer will be exceedingly cool. Other Boomers will suck.
-The old Apollo will do some things that no one really cares about.
-The cylons will debate, and decide that God wants them to hang back and wait to see what the humans do.
-50% of the people in the scene will be under floodlight so you can’t see half of their faces.
-50% of the show will contain no sound other than background music. You know, for ‘character development’. Stare at their faces to truly grok them!

Sorry for the spoilers.

Kevin M on October 30, 2006 at 1:19 AM

I have to say I had a great time this weekend ripping on this awful show, and I’m so glad that no one complained. Your arguments for why the show is watchable are probably better than mine which say the opposite, but no one called me a nazi or even called my character into question. That says quite a bit about the type of commenter at HotAir. It’s sad that most disagreement ends in personal attacks. But not here. Kudos to you!

Still, BSG stinks :)

Kevin M on October 30, 2006 at 1:25 AM

Kevin M –

Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and whether or not the show is good is entirely a matter of taste. My little sister watches Dawson’s Creek reruns, but I still talk to her. ;)

That said, I’m firmly of the opinion that BSG is the best television ever made. No other show has actually caused me to sit forward on the edge of my seat.

celeste on October 30, 2006 at 6:41 AM

Still, BSG stinks :)

Troll.

PeteRR on October 30, 2006 at 8:14 AM

For me, it is ultimately about storytelling. I didn’t see much of the original, but I have seen most of the Star Trek Franchise–until Voyager. (I so hated the captain, with her smarmy, nasal voice and superiorist attitude that I simply couldn’t watch.) The fact that none of the characters in BSG can be easily pigeon-holed is one of the most important things that makes the show interesting. Character development, plot development, dialog, etc. I am pretty Aristotelian when it comes to good drama, and for him the last element was spectacle. It would be difficult to have a show that was pure space war. At that point, just stop watching TV and go play Starcraft.

Still, BSG stinks :)

Troll.

PeteRR on October 30, 2006 at 8:14 AM
That was a trollish statement, but I don’t think he is a true troll, dude.

As far as them finding Earth and in what shape it will be, I would say let’s give the writers a chance. If we need to, we can burn that bridge when we come to it.

urbancenturion on October 30, 2006 at 12:45 PM

Some things are hokey about BSG, like the designing and building of a stealth Viper in one episode or using the exact same stretch of Galactica hallway over (1.0) and over (2.0) and over (2.5) and over (3.0) again for everything from a Cylon boarding party battle to the Old Man walking to the bridge from his stateroom to the chance meetings of key characters (a limitation of a TV show’s budget I’d guess), but I really enjoy watching it because its got good script, good actors and acting (Doc “Hey! Will you stop going crazy in there?” Cottle is the frakin’ bom!) , and is well shot – I just happen to like those lightig effects on the characters, very Aliens-ish. With an infant and a toddler about my free time is very sparce; even so I still make time to watch a recording or two late at night – it really is that good.
Depending on ones level of cynicism, I guess one could say it is a left leaning/right leaning parallel of the WoT and Iraq and provide examples there of, but I don’t really see anything more into it other than it is a great story with clever plot devices. Just relax and unclench a bit – Karl Rove and Howard Dean aren’t out there behind every rock and tree waiting to give you an ideological bitchslap (or are they!?!)
to the Honorable and Most Ever Worshipful Diviner of The Prime Directive Kevin M.: In my opinion, BSG is a story set in an ancilary sci-fi backdrop; SG-1 et al are sci-fi settings that use a story to justify the next eXtreme!!1! sci-fi heavy episode, or as a filler and substitue until next years CGI budget gets approved. :p

blogRot on October 30, 2006 at 1:58 PM

I have to say I had a great time this weekend ripping on this awful show, and I’m so glad that no one complained. Your arguments for why the show is watchable are probably better than mine which say the opposite, but no one called me a nazi or even called my character into question. That says quite a bit about the type of commenter at HotAir. It’s sad that most disagreement ends in personal attacks. But not here. Kudos to you!

Don’t mention it, toaster-lover.

Blacklake on October 30, 2006 at 3:25 PM