The Space Politics Thread

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The Space Politics Thread

Post by snufkin on Thu 2 Mar - 21:13

Because some recent discussion has touched on how much was/wasn't covered in TFA and its potential role going forward in the ST. We know that most fans consider discussions about trade agreements to have been a big downfall of the PT






For editing and narrative impact of Han & Leia's story as parents who fell apart because of their son in crisis, the bulk of the space politics got cut out of TFA to the extent that we only got the basics. But the just released paperback edition of Bloodline is now in stores and has stirred back up discussion about how that book lays out Leia's backstory about what she had been doing in the New Republic as a political leader, the different groups/agendas, and setting the stage for the Resistance versus First Order

Star Wars: Bloodline reveals the hidden history of Leia Organa and the First Order

The Phantom Menace is the most overtly political Star Wars film, and it’s also the one that gets it horribly wrong. The opening crawl reads with the dusty indifference of a bad history book. Throughout the film, there no sense of a grand Galactic Senate; no political daggers shining in the dark. It’s a tepid, impenetrable wheeze, delivered with the stumbling indifference of a sixth grader sniffing his way through a presentation on the industrial revolution. Bloodline shows us what could have been.

It’s sharp, direct, unpredictable. By putting Leia in a position of political influence, it helps rationalise all the stuff that’s happened to her. She’s a war hero, but she doesn't have the comfort of being a Jedi recluse. She has a role to play, as the very public face of the Populists, an unofficial faction of the Galactic Senate. And while Han’s away managing a racing championship, Leia is bound by duty, unable to live the life she wants. It’s a different kind of sacrifice. The central political schism of the book is believable without being boring, and it’s also a smart reminder, as if you needed one, of how malignant political forces can rise without people even noticing. It’s a decent explanation of the First Order, with obvious parallels to historical events that are more fulfilling than simplistic analogy.

Also I have to give a shout out to @BastilaBey for knowing me well enough to recommend the Beltway Banthas podcast, which covers politics both in a galaxy far far away and in our daily lives. At least for those of us who are American, although the discussion is still accessible to international listeners and does focus on general Star Wars nerdery that you'd likely enjoy. It's hosted by two former Obama campaign workers and so far has interviewed Alexandra Petri from the Washington Post and creator of Emo Kylo Ren, NPR political hosts, and Eric Gellar of Politico. Who started out as a fandom contributor to Star Wars and LF - it sounds like being a super fan contributor really is the way to getting your foot in the door for a job there. It's definitely a discussion of Star Wars and politics done right, versus the Tumblr essays that get posted on here. Where I read it and think that if it's written by somebody in grad school, they need an advisor who can teach them how to be better at editing themselves and avoiding the worst (overblown and verbose prose) parts of academic writing.

In terms of other political writers who cover SW in depth, at least here in the States, there's legal scholar Cass Sunstein and economist Tyler Cowan. I always think of Cowan in the context of Reylo b/c he's said judging from the OT and PT, it's the morally grey and dark male characters who continue the generations (aka somebody's granddad and dad)



We know that there will likely be a return to some of the Space Politics thread in the next movie, potentially in the conflicts between Poe and Laura Dern's character. So this is a thread on that topic, even if it's to snark about how planet that elected Jar Jar to be their senator got what it deserved. Or because one of the reasons why this place stands above other sights IMO are the # of members who work in the legal profession or who are ex-military and the insights they've had on topics like war crimes or wow most soldiers would feel if they had a weird and mercurial CO like Kylo Ren.
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Re: The Space Politics Thread

Post by Lily Snape on Mon 6 Mar - 7:27

Here's a topic: Kylo's role in the FO vs. Vader's role in the Empire (vs. the Jedi's role in the Republic, now that I think about it.). We know the "spiritualist" Kylo and "technocrat" Hux dichotomy from Pablo, but what does Kylo DO, and what did Vader do? Job description? Limits of power? Chain of command? Relationship to officers, to stormtroopers, etc.? That kind of thing.
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Re: The Space Politics Thread

Post by Kessel on Mon 6 Mar - 19:17

According to the Visual Dictionary, Kylo's role within the FO is intentionally "modeled" after Vader's role in the Empire. The VD says that Kylo "exists outside the formal command structure of the First Order, and has a direct link to the shadowy Supreme Leader. It is with palpable tension that the upper command of the First Order contends with Kylo, as his agenda always trumps military objectives. In this way, Kylo's placement within the hierarchy resembles that of Darth Vader in the old Galactic Empire. This is entirely by design."

They're both "magical" Force-wielding enforcers, of sorts. They hunt down and interrogate enemies of the Empire/FO (i.e. Jedi, rebels). Because Snoke "modeled" Kylo's position after Vader's, and because Kylo seems to have his own personal goals and group (the KOR), I get the impression Kylo fits in less with the FO than Vader did with the Empire.

We know Vader had his own inquisitors who assisted him in hunting down Jedi and that Vader had his own secret plans to overthrow the emperor (thus his offer to Luke to join him). That makes me wonder how much Kylo really knows about Vader's plans. Is he only pretending to follow Snoke, but ultimately wants to only fulfill Vader's goals (finish what Vader started) or is Kylo being somewhat deceived and manipulated by Snoke when it comes to what he believes Vader's ultimate plans were?
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Re: The Space Politics Thread

Post by snufkin on Sat 11 Mar - 1:30

Lily Snape wrote:Here's a topic: Kylo's role in the FO vs. Vader's role in the Empire (vs. the Jedi's role in the Republic, now that I think about it.). We know the "spiritualist" Kylo and "technocrat" Hux dichotomy from Pablo, but what does Kylo DO, and what did Vader do? Job description? Limits of power? Chain of command? Relationship to officers, to stormtroopers, etc.? That kind of thing.

Kessel89 wrote:According to the Visual Dictionary, Kylo's role within the FO is intentionally "modeled" after Vader's role in the Empire. The VD says that Kylo "exists outside the formal command structure of the First Order, and has a direct link to the shadowy Supreme Leader. It is with palpable tension that the upper command of the First Order contends with Kylo, as his agenda always trumps military objectives. In this way, Kylo's placement within the hierarchy resembles that of Darth Vader in the old Galactic Empire. This is entirely by design."

They're both "magical" Force-wielding enforcers, of sorts. They hunt down and interrogate enemies of the Empire/FO (i.e. Jedi, rebels). Because Snoke "modeled" Kylo's position after Vader's, and because Kylo seems to have his own personal goals and group (the KOR), I get the impression Kylo fits in less with the FO than Vader did with the Empire.

We know Vader had his own inquisitors who assisted him in hunting down Jedi and that Vader had his own secret plans to overthrow the emperor (thus his offer to Luke to join him). That makes me wonder how much Kylo really knows about Vader's plans. Is he only pretending to follow Snoke, but ultimately wants to only fulfill Vader's goals (finish what Vader started) or is Kylo being somewhat deceived and manipulated by Snoke when it comes to what he believes Vader's ultimate plans were?
Lily Snape wrote:Here's a topic: Kylo's role in the FO vs. Vader's role in the Empire (vs. the Jedi's role in the Republic, now that I think about it.). We know the "spiritualist" Kylo and "technocrat" Hux dichotomy from Pablo, but what does Kylo DO, and what did Vader do? Job description? Limits of power? Chain of command? Relationship to officers, to stormtroopers, etc.? That kind of thing.

@Lily Snape - great question, you just made me laugh at the thought of Snoke reeling in a post-Jedi defection Ben Solo with a job description and benefits package chat with the HR officer for the FO. There were definitely some perks like personal hairstylist and space limo thrown in to sweeten the deal.

@Kessel89 - my guess is that we'll get some of the back details in the next movie, about what Kylo knows, what Snoke has told him, and his own secret agenda. If it's similar or different from Vader. Which sort of fits with a very general mirroring of ESB as the heart of the trilogy story, when we find out more about the characters and the story in play. Whether or not Snoke knew about the Vader patrimony before or after Leia got outed is a good question. Because he's clearly able to manipulate Kylo in feeling guilty that he's "not strong enough" based on what went down with the Emperor.

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