The politics of Battlestar Galactica and the real world
by JasonGooljar, Tue Mar 21, 2006 at 01:36:11 PM EST
But, now about one of my favorite shows ( there is not many I hardly watch tv ) on television.
The unofficial Battlestar Galactica blog has this post up about the politics of the show as it relates to the real world. Just imagine having to deal with what they deal with on the show! Somehow I think the human race fighting against being enslaved, dominated, and eventually eradicated by machines would unite all religions and all races ( I'd hope ). But this is reality and we have Republicans who use race, class, gender, religion, and sexual orientation to divide us.
It's an interesting discussion going on over at the thread and it's great that the blogger started this. I just disagree with some of the analysis.
Here's one case :
The new series on the Sci Fi channel has tried to take a more traditional liberal Hollywood spin on things. This is why in the new series, the bad of humanity is constantly shown. This is because the humans still represent the United States, and the hardcore left believes that the United States is a bad nation and full of evil.
Before this the blogger stated that the original series in the 70's had a more conservative slant and mirrored the Cold War. The robots were the Russians and the humans were the United States. He even says that the treaties between the US and the Soviet Union in the 70's were viewed by conservatives as the US being weak and the Soviets trying to gain the upper hand. In the original series the relation plays out by the robots ( Cylons ) fooling the humans into signing a peace treaty, catching them off guard, and then destroying the human race. The blogger says that humanity was destroyed by its hunger for peace on the show.
But does that mean the lesson for the real world is that we cannot want peace? I think we can seek peace and at the same time remain vigilant and protect ourselves. We can even sign some treaties too. I'm also one of those who think that the Cold War was possibly hyped up starting with president Truman to be more than it was to keep the pentagon economic system going.
After WWII Truman felt that the economy should continue to be planned around defense. This meant our tax dollars go to the military so they can build the latest technology and weapons then the military sells it off to corporations to make a profit. We could have planned the economy differently, however in order to do it this way I think Truman scared the hell out of the American people about the Communist threat at the time. While Communism is not something we wanted taking over any large part of the world I feel that containment was the best route, we did not need to keep up this insane military spending. Although, the nuclear arms race did end up destroying the Soviet Union from within because they could not afford to keep up with the US. Which is sort of weird when you think about assured mutual destruction and how both nations had way too many nukes ( and the US still does ). All it takes is a few to destroy the entire world! Hence the saying there were enough nukes to destroy the world many times over and make the rubble bounce! But alas, I'm no Cold War expert.
But regarding the above block quote, I disagree that anyone on the left, even the hardcore,( which I'm not all the way on the hardcore left lol ) thinks that the US is a bad nation full of evil. Every nation has good and evil in it and the things that this nation does wrong must be brought to light. I think our current president is the worst since Herbert Hoover for example, but we are not the government of North Korea. If the current series is showing what is bad about humanity I think it's to our benefit to remind us of the many evil things we are capable of. Also, if the Cylons were the Russians on the original series, then what do they represent now? I fear that what some people think they now represent which are Muslims is just plain wrong.
Here's another whole section that I disagree with :
Despite all this, by loosely basing the storyline on the original series, the basic conservative theme remains and we have finally seen it revealed this season.
(1) Roslyn represents George Bush. She's anti-abortion, she believes in a lot of religious mumbo-jumbo, she tried to fix an election (the left wing believes that George Bush cheated in Florida in 2000), she doesn't believe that the Cylons (who represent Muslims here) are human so she has them thrown out airlocks and killed without any due process. And when it came to settling down on a nice planet, or living in a state of fear, Roslyn was right! The Cylons were out there, and as soon as humans let down their guard, it only took slightly longer than a year before they were conquered.
(2) Baltar represents John Kerry. They both have funny hair and funny accents. The left believes that John Kerry is smarter than George Bush (even though it's a lie), and Baltar is certainly smarter than Roslyn. But it's intelligence without wisdom. Baltar wants to believe that the Cylons are people too, reasonable people who he can have sex with and who won't come hunting down the last remnants of humanity. But of course Baltar is wrong.
(3) Bill Adama represents the military, naturally. Bill Adama was right about everything. And incidentally, the senior Adama is the character who has come off as having the highest integrity of anyone on the show. He can't be seduced by women, he doesn't abuse alcohol like most of the other officers, and when he found out about the election fixing, he was mad about it. His fear of the Cylons (who represent the Muslims) was not institutional based paranoia (what's the purpose of a military if there's nothing to fear?), it was based on the wisdom of a man who understands the nature of the world.
Okay. There is much that is just totally wrong here. First of all, if you watch the show I hardly think that Roslyn is George W. Bush. She's way better a person! I refuse to buy into the new scare tactics that Muslims and Islam is the new enemy! That is wrong. It's even worse seeing the Bush administration trying to turn this into the new Communist threat of our time. Just to scare the hell out of the American people into continuing the pentagon economic system and surrendering their civil liberties.
Yes, terrorism is the enemy but there are many groups all over the world who engage in terrorism not only radical Islamists. What if some terrorist group, in say, Latin America were to strike the US next? What then? Muslims are not the enemy! Will someone please make Richard Clarke the supreme terrorism czar to stop all this nonsense going on? sheesh.
The blogger totally misinterprets the show. Roslyn is not anti-abortion first of all. In a past episode she made this clear. She changed the policy only after realizing that there are only 50k + humans alive in the entire fleet and that in order for the human race to continue, well......
As far as the Cylons go I believe that she was slightly more accommodating than the blogger gives her credit for. Yes, she did do some things like have them thrown out of airlocks there could have been more due process however. Concerning the planet I think after carefully examining the situation they might have settled on it. She was just not in a rush like Baltar was ( he was also using it as a political tool ). While on the show she believes in a lot of religious stuff she's not a theocrat. There are many things that separate her from being George W. Bush.
Again. The blogger totally messes up in his analysis of Baltar. Baltar is not John Kerry! I don't know where he gets the funny hair and funny accent thing from ( must be a conservative narrow mindedness thing ). Come to think of it I can only help but think what the blogger truly feels about anyone who is not American, if we use his analogy and apply it to the real world here. On who's smarter Bush or Kerry, I'd basically have settled for who will govern better and clearly that is not Bush. And yes I'm a Deaniac! I wanted Dean there!
Furthermore, if we look at what he says about the robots on the show and apply his thinking to the real world, what do we get? What does this say about him? I don't even want to go there because Muslims are people! They don't want to destroy humanity!
Concerning the show itself Baltar does get his Cylon love on. He's not the only one though. A couple of the humans on the show have intimate sexual relations with the Cylons. They do see them as human and not all out to get the world. In the end they do come back to conquer humanity on the planet the humans settle on. Although that was how this season ended I think we'll see the humans fight this occupation next season.
Is Baltar and the other humans wrong for having intimate sexual relations with machines? Well, they may believe that the Cylons are evolved humans for example. After all, one of the Cylons is capable of bearing a Cylon/human child! There also seems to be a fissure within the Cylon race itself with human loving Cylons vs. human destroying Cylons. So maybe they are not all out to dominate the human race though it seems the ones in power are. Maybe there are more Cylons like Sharon or maybe she was an anomaly. But at this juncture in the history of the series I can't help but say humans need to be weary of the Cylons because there are more of them now who want to dominate you than peacefully co-exist and get their freak on.
Finally Bill Adama is the man period.