Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Clone Wars -- "Sabotage" (Ep. 5.17)

-- Sometimes even the smallest doubt can shake the greatest belief.

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This episode, things get real.

No, I mean really real.

One thing we know, people (populations) don't like wars. It doesn't matter how "just" or "right" they are, over time, people want things to be back to normal and to not be involved in wars. Though Clone Wars has toyed a bit with how the common man has reacted to the war going on around them, "Sabotage" makes it real. It brings it home to Coruscant and how the citizens not actively engaged in the fighting are reacting to the war and the clones and the Jedi. It's not good.

There's a definite faction building that is actively protesting the war that's going on and the Jedi seem... Well, more than anything else, they seem baffled by it. They've spent so long never having their authority questioned that they don't really know how to react to the people who are turning against them.

So there's an incident, and the Council decides to call Anakin and Ahsoka back to Coruscant to deal with the investigation since they're obviously innocent of what happened. Because, see, the sentiment is that a Jedi may have done it, so none of the Jedi who were on Coruscant can be trusted.

Of course, then Mace Windu assigns a droid to work with them on the case and no one stops to think about whether the droid, the droid assigned by one of the Jedi who had been on planet when the incident happened, can be trusted. I found that kind of amusing.

At any rate, if I'm remembering correctly, this is a real turning point in the series, and you can tell that the tone of the show was really changing to something a little more dark and a little more serious and a little more great... just to have its plug pulled because Disney bought the Star Wars franchise and didn't want one of their shows on some other network. And, while I can understand that, still, screw you Disney!

"Fear makes even the most trusting individual... irrational."

"There are going to be Jedi who disappoint us..." -- Anakin Skywalker


  1. This isn't about Clone Wars at all; it's about other stuff but this was your most recent post.

    First, I just yesterday finished the Star Wars "Aftermath" trilogy of books, and found it really, really, disappointing. I think part of the fun of Star Wars is that it's NOT a book, and the books made everyone seem weepy and mopey, while not in any way adding to my understanding or appreciation of the movies. I'd say overall it was a waste of time reading them.

    Second, as for health insurance and liberty; my comments are occasionally disjointed as I write them while also doing other stuff as I was on Saturday, but here is the problem in a nutshell:

    What we define as the right, and how we balance rights, helps determine what options we give people. We have a right to life and to liberty. But how you define "life" is a different matter; I agree with people that life begins at conception. I'm not pro-life in the sense that most people mean it, in that I would not outlaw abortion if given the chance. Instead, I would opt to make abortions rare and unnecessary by promoting contraception and smart approaches to sex, as well as a robust system for supporting teens, unwed mothers, and others who might find themselves unwillingly pregnant.

    People don't like those ideas, though, because they involve a bunch of different concepts and aren't easy to can into a black-white perspective. Thinking that way requires being progressive about sex and supportive of people who make mistakes or are unlucky -- anathema to today's 'conservatives.'

    But pro-choicers focus too much on making abortion available, and too little on making it rare. They focus on promoting liberty (a woman's liberty to choose) above life (a baby's right to life.) They could CONCEDE the argument about when life begins, and use their efforts to try to promote a society where that argument is IRRELEVANT.

    But they don't.

    And that's where the political parties come in. This is not a difficult thing: saying "hey, wouldn't it be nice if we didn't HAVE to fight about whether it was okay to abort a baby" is not hard. It requires political will -- to convince conservatives that sex ed is okay -- but is that political will any greater than the will needed to convince conservatives that a baby isn't a baby?

    Political parties promote social arguments to keep people from focusing on economic realities. You said that Obama might have wanted single payer. I never saw any evidence of that, or any evidence that Obama actually worried about policies that protected the middle or lower class. If he'd wanted single payer, he could have pushed for it, the way he pushed for same-sex marriage acceptance. One of the lasting achievements of Obama's era (one forced on him by Biden, actually) is that same-sex relationships are much more accepted, even now.

    If you think he couldn't have put that effort into ending the war in Afghanistan, or getting single payer, then you're being somewhat naive. But there are powerful economic interests that each political party needs to keep in power, and they support those things and have lobbying power. Economic interests did not drive the same-sex marriage debate.

    In all respects that matter: economic policy, privacy -- there is no substantive difference between the political parties. None. Their differences are paper differences over social fights that do not matter in the long run because society will fix them.

    1. Briane: About abortion:
      We have the data, now, that shows that when women are educated and given access to birth control AND abortions are legal that the number of abortions drop and drop considerably.

      And here's where the parties are more than just different on paper. The Republicans do NOT support that kind of education for women and do NOT support giving women access to birth control.

      Also, the issue over making abortion available is a healthcare issue, because, when abortion is not legal, it does not stop women from seeking them out. The result is deaths and... mistakes that can make it impossible for women to later conceive, so it's not just about when life begins; it's about saving the lives of women who will seek out illegal abortions.

      In the long run, I don't believe society will fix problems, not in the way that you mean. Society, as a whole, rarely goes about fixing problems, and I think you can see that in the election of Trump. Conservatives always have the loudest voice and will fight the hardest to maintain their "values," because liberals tend to believe that people should get to live in the ways that they choose to live. That means allowing Conservatives to live they way they choose. Unfortunately, Conservatives want everyone to live the way they choose, so there has to be some outside controls on that, like the First Amendment. Etc.

  2. How people really feel about the Jedi: it's an interesting, and for me totally unexpected, theme of the series.

  3. TAS: Yeah, it's an interesting dynamic, because, prior to this, all we really have are the words of Obi-Wan in 'A New Hope' to tell us about the Jedi and how people felt about them. You get hints at other places, like in 'Attack of the Clones' when Anakin and Obi-Wan are hunting for the assassin, but it's a different perspective to see people actively protesting the Jedi.

    Especially since it's specifically over the clones, which were engineered by the Sith.