Star Trek’s ‘Prime Directive’ is Stupid

From Sentient Developments:

Fiction often reflects reality and nowhere is this more true than in Star Trek. The franchise is one giant phantasmagoric projection of human hopes and longings. It’s also a glimpse into a our societal norms and commonly held inhibitions, fears and inconsistencies.

Take the Star Trek Prime Directive (PD) for example, a non-interference policy that applies to civilizations who have yet to develop the capacity for warp speed. The policy dictates that there be no interference with the natural development of any primitive society. No pre-warp culture can be given or exposed to any information regarding advanced technology or alien races, nor should the United Federation of Planets improve or change in any way the natural course of such a society, even if that change is well-intentioned and kept completely secret.

The Federation contends that great harm would be inflicted upon a civilization if first contact is made prematurely. It is my opinion, however, that if anything like a PD was put into practice it would introduce a slew of ethical problems…

Lines From Alanis Morissette’s “Ironic,” Modified to Actually Make them Ironic

How McSweenysish:

An old man turned ninety-eight. He won the lottery and died the next day… of chronic emphysema from inhalation of the latex particles scratched off decades’ worth of lottery tickets.

A traffic jam when you’re already late… to receive an award from the Municipal Planning Board for reducing the city’s automobile congestion 80 percent.

Ten thousand spoons when all you need is a knife… with which to kill your spouse for sleeping with the young soup chef who works at the Au Bon Pain.

The Museum of Unworkable Devices

This museum is a celebration of fascinating devices that don’t work. It houses diverse examples of the perverse genius of inventors who refused to let their thinking be intimidated by the laws of nature, remaining optimistic in the face of repeated failures. Watch and be amazed as we bring to life eccentric and even intricate perpetual motion machines that have remained steadfastly unmoving since their inception.