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Vigil

The Empire is evil.

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Wasn't there a theory that Palpatine militarised the Republic and made it into an Empire in order to combat the threat of the invading Yuuzhan Vong?

There's also a theory that Ja Jar is Snoke.

 

Everyone is Snoke.

 

Time for more Snoke-speculation!

 

Although recently released books lead me to develop a new vague impression of where he comes from: (Aftermath II spoilers)

Rax guarded something on Jakku. He prepares to get something from Jakku at the end of the second Aftermath book. I believe that this is Snoke, a being of great power that predates both Jedi and Sith, banished (probably for dark-sidey stuff) in some kind of crude stasis (therefor the screwed up face like that of a mummie), but known through Sith lore. Sheev rediscovered his tomb and recognized him as the only being powerfull enough to take over his reign, which made him both important as successor and dangerous as rival, which is why he was for the time left on Jakku. He then left instructions on what to do in the case of his death with Gallius Rax who now is ready to rebuild the empire as first order with Snoke at its head.

 

The new republic believes Jakku to be a victory, when in reality Rax's fleet only held out as long as they needed to recover Snoke.

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iamfanboy, on 05 Oct 2016 - 03:15 AM, said:

 

"Evil is just a point of view, Anakin." I'd believe Palpatine more if he hadn't instigated a galactic civil war, then put himself as the leader of one faction and his apprentice as the leader of the other, meaning no matter what he'd win. Kind of evil to murder millions for personal power.

 

 

 

Sounds a little like Hillary and Trump.  Who is the master and who is the apprentice?

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The interesting thing about the empire, like many real governments, is that even though the Empire itself is evil, there are people in it who belive they are doing the right thing. I love to root for the empire, I like flying TIE Figthers, I want my own Stormtrooper armor, I like the Empire. but if I lived in the Star Wars Universe, I would probably be in the empire, but join the Rebels after Alderran.

 

In episode IV, Luke wanted to join the (Imperial) Academy.  It was only the massacre that occured afterwards that steered him the other way.

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Sir Orrin, on 05 Oct 2016 - 07:49 AM, said:Sir Orrin, on 05 Oct 2016 - 07:49 AM, said:Sir Orrin, on 05 Oct 2016 - 07:49 AM, said:Sir Orrin, on 05 Oct 2016 - 07:49 AM, said:

The interesting thing about the empire, like many real governments, is that even though the Empire itself is evil, there are people in it who belive they are doing the right thing. I love to root for the empire, I like flying TIE Figthers, I want my own Stormtrooper armor, I like the Empire. but if I lived in the Star Wars Universe, I would probably be in the empire, but join the Rebels after Alderran.

 

Read first person accounts of Germans who served during World War II.  Many were just regular Joe's hoping to help their country and democratically elected leader.  They decorated Christmas trees, loved their mothers, respected their foes... and ignored they were run by the National Socialist Democratic Party.  That the SS existed, that the NSDAP used paid protesters (brown shirts) to intimidate other political parties, etc.  They chose statism (big government) over small and statism over personal liberties.  By the time they realized the evil of the path they chose it was to late.  The NSDAP controlled the military, stripped civilians from owning firearms, rejected criticism and persecuted dissenters, press was propaganda, created state police answerable to the government and not the people, etc.  We like to say the NSDAP was 'far right' but in truth and practice they were a little left of where today's Democratic party stands.  They just happened to make the mistake of electing a corrupt and power hungry career politician who was also charismatic.

Edited by Cr0aker

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The Empire is indisputably evil.  It is ruled by the Dark Side, and Palpatine's purpose in creating it was to obtain ultimate power and to destroy the Jedi order, restoring the Sith to what he believed was their rightful place.  Vader was evil and used capital punishment for minor transgressions.  They were the embodiment of the Dark Side, and there's no account under which their motivations or actions were not morally reprehensible.  Within the grandness of the Empire, its members most assuredly represented a wide array of motivations, dispositions, and behaviors.  Some may have been actively evil, like Tarkin and Motti.  Motti is eager to use the Death Star to prove Imperial might.  Tarkin crafted the Doctrine of Fear to use intimidation and force to maintain order.  You have people willing to commit atrocities and what would be considered heinous war crimes for tactical or political gain.  Other members may not have been quite so bad, especially the lower down the chain of command you go (ie, the more removed they are from positions of influence). Some may have joined the Empire out of misinformation and a desire to do good, others because they had nothing better to do, some because they craved glory, a few for revenge against pirates or rebels, a handful for power, and some may been conscripted (like the clones and First Order stormtroopers).  These individual motivations would vary widely on a spectrum from noble to despicable.

Nevertheless, once you're in the organization, you always have a choice.  It wouldn't take long to get a sense of the Empire's evil ways.  Stories of Darth Vader executing capable and competent officers with the slightest of provocations, seeing the enslavement and oppression of many peoples (especially non-humans), witnessing brutal torture and interrogation tactics, participating in the execution of innocent civilians (e.g. the opening scene of TFA)--all of these things would tip you off pretty quickly to the true nature of the Empire, even if you joined up with the most honorable intentions and a misinformed sense of what the Empire was.  Even if those things didn't tip you off, you could just flip through the ship registry.  A benevolent organization does not name its crafts thing like the Devastator, Executor, Suppressor, Tyrant, Conquest, Demolisher, Finalizer, and they named their space station the frickin' DEATH Star.  That's not subtle. 

"The Empire is so great and maintains peaceful order and ensures all peoples have a chance to flourish!  I'm glad we've finally graduated the academy!"

"Yea, me too!  I got assigned to a ship called the Suppressor...you?"

"Neat, I'm going to a place called the Death Star"

"...  Hmm, come to think of it...all of our training was in rigid obedience and military effectiveness...say, did you have any classes in like communication, negotiation, ethics, or humanitarian aid logistics and engineering?"

"Hmm...no...just how to maintain blasters and where the vital organs of different species were..."

"Well...I'm sure it's fine!  Off to help people!"

"Yea, for the Emperor!"

*high five*
 

 

As ethical theories and legal tribunals have found time and time again, "just following orders" is not a moral or legal justification that alleviates one of their culpability in a greater system.  One always has the option to not follow orders.  Biggs, Finn, and many others defected from the Empire/FO.  Others sabotaged from the inside.  Anyone could refuse to participate, even if meant their death.  It's hard to imagine the operators of the super-laser could go back to their bunks after destroying Alderaan thinking "jeez..that was pretty bad...no that was terrible in fact..all those peoples...oh well, no blood on my hands, I was just following orders! I'm a good guy!  Nothing I could have done differently!  I had no choice!"


PS: I know the vast majority of fans who say that the Empire are the good guys are obviously trolling.  But I've met some who genuinely feel that way. and I think it's a product of modern nihilism and gritty morally-gray morally-ambiguous outlooks (which in reality is sometimes the case).  But one of the timeless features of Star Wars has always been that it has adhered to a very clear "Good vs Evil" framework at its core. 

Edited by AllWingsStandyingBy

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The empire is intriguing because of 'what it can get done' and I feel Lucas tried to examine this through the prequels.  What made the empire cool to me was the original TIE fighter flight sim.  It really did start off with you serving a 'benevolent' empire to stop two warring factions from committing genocide on each other... but then you start sliding down that slippery slope.  I like that you can explore these themes in fiction (books, games, movies etc) as what if lessons.  It is easier to understand why some people idolize the third Reich (being a part of something 'big' and 'powerful' to do 'good') and others despise it as a result (too long to list).

 

 

 

Boba Rick, on 05 Oct 2016 - 11:07 AM, said:

I get so tired of people complaining about imperfect America when there's a lot for which to be thankful.

Amen.  We live in a country with a government that was designed not to work... unless it benefited all.  One that functions best when it functions least.  The system fails often enough; but has, to date, prevented such a fall as the National Socialist Democratic Party caused in Germany which George Lucas used to model what the galactic empire was.  Our system was designed not as 'majority rules' but one that the majority should never be able to dictate to the minority.  For all its flaws it is the longest lasting government currently existing today.  It can, however, be lost at the drop of a hat.  Eternal vigilance is the price of liberty.

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For all its flaws it is the longest lasting government currently existing today.

Umm...what?  You might need to go back to history class.  Or else you're using some very loose interpretations of "lasting government," I suppose.

For instance, the Parliament of the United Kingdom was formed in 1707, a good eighty-one years before the earliest possible interpretation of the United States' "lasting government" (I know us Yanks only like to think about 'Ol' Evil King George' and the Crown being a thing back then, but even decades before the Revolutionary War the UK had embraced the Parliamentary system which is still in place today...sheesh).  Also, regarding: the 81 year head-start (ignoring the age of the Crown entirely): I'm not sure exactly when the US' "current lasting government" even started, but it wasn't in 1776 as most fellow Americans would probably report.  We didn't ratify the Articles of the Confederation until 1781 and those weren't replaced with the current Constitution until 1788.  The Declaration of Independence =/= The Constitution, and even then the Bill of Rights weren't ratified as an addendum to the Constitution until 1791.

I'm a proud American myself, but can we please refrain from proudly flaunting historical illiteracy as a sign of national pride?  And let's not forget all of the contingent advantages that the fantastic wealth of natural resources and relative geographical insulation from the turmoil between the powers in Europe afforded the US as a country, as they were also incredibly significant in the success and influence that America has enjoyed.

I will say it's humbling to travel the World and gain a new appreciation for America's utter youth.  For instance, walking around a place like London or Oxford you're literally among buildings and institutions that are nearly a thousand years old...roughly four times as old as the US itself.  That helps one remain humbled, respectful, and appreciative.  The world is an old, big place, full of many wonderful people and their contributions.  It's good to never lose that amidst one's own views and experiences.

 

Edited by AllWingsStandyingBy

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Is it tine to point out the similarities between the Empire testing the Death Star on Alderaan to Anerica dropping the atomic bomb on Japan?

Not the biggest US fan, but it doesn't really work. The similaritties are only major explosions unlike any seen before.

 

One was a bad descision made by a war-tired (boy that lasted long...) country made to end a war in which both parties willingly fought. The other is an act of retribution against a planet that may or may not have supported the opponent in a war they weren't part of. US bombardment of Japan was to be expected, the empire showing up unannounced all like "Hey, you are all dead now!" was not at all.

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As ethical theories and legal tribunals have found time and time again, "just following orders" is not a moral or legal justification that alleviates one of their culpability in a greater system. One always has the option to not follow orders. Biggs, Finn, and many others defected from the Empire/FO. Others sabotaged from the inside. Anyone could refuse to participate, even if meant their death. It's hard to imagine the operators of the super-laser could go back to their bunks after destroying Alderaan thinking "jeez..that was pretty bad...no that was terrible in fact..all those peoples...oh well, no blood on my hands, I was just following orders! I'm a good guy! Nothing I could have done differently! I had no choice!"PS: I know the vast majority of fans who say that the Empire are the good guys are obviously trolling. But I've met some who genuinely feel that way. and I think it's a product of modern nihilism and gritty morally-gray morally-ambiguous outlooks (which in reality is sometimes the case). But one of the timeless features of Star Wars has always been that it has adhered to a very clear "Good vs Evil" framework at its core.

Unless you are on the victorious side, then just following orders is perfectly fine.

We generally only punish the losers in conflict, do you think if Germany had won WW2 the orchestrators of the fire bombing of dresdin would not have been tried as war criminals? And I could name many other things.

History is written by the victors. (Not saying the nazi regime was not evil) just saying if your side wins then just following orders seems to be just fine.

Uneven punishment after warfare leads to things like WW2 if the world (specifically France) had not utterly crushed out the future of the German economy after WW1 we may not have had a second world war.

Lastly evil is very subjective, how many people did the rebels kill before alderon? How many terror style attacks were done in the name of the rebellion? In a conflict there is rarelly someone on the side of good, just groups with there own agendas doing what they have justified to peruse those agendas in the next of good.

Edited by Icelom

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Is it tine to point out the similarities between the Empire testing the Death Star on Alderaan to Anerica dropping the atomic bomb on Japan?

Both action were an attempt to stop further unnecessary violence the US knew Japan would fight to the last person and wanted to avoid such slaughter, the empire knew alderan was the heart of galactic Isis and wanted to save known space from their religious crusade.

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Is it tine to point out the similarities between the Empire testing the Death Star on Alderaan to Anerica dropping the atomic bomb on Japan?

 

Dumbest thing I've heard all day.

Is it tine to point out the similarities between the Empire testing the Death Star on Alderaan to Anerica dropping the atomic bomb on Japan?

 

Dumbest thing I've heard all day.

It's the closest real-life analogue to the use of the Death Star in human history. America wiped out two major civilian population centers with the press of a button.

It remains the only country to have deployed WMDs to this day.

If you think that's "dumb", you need to go and take a long, hard look at yourself.

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As ethical theories and legal tribunals have found time and time again, "just following orders" is not a moral or legal justification that alleviates one of their culpability in a greater system. One always has the option to not follow orders. Biggs, Finn, and many others defected from the Empire/FO. Others sabotaged from the inside. Anyone could refuse to participate, even if meant their death. It's hard to imagine the operators of the super-laser could go back to their bunks after destroying Alderaan thinking "jeez..that was pretty bad...no that was terrible in fact..all those peoples...oh well, no blood on my hands, I was just following orders! I'm a good guy! Nothing I could have done differently! I had no choice!"PS: I know the vast majority of fans who say that the Empire are the good guys are obviously trolling. But I've met some who genuinely feel that way. and I think it's a product of modern nihilism and gritty morally-gray morally-ambiguous outlooks (which in reality is sometimes the case). But one of the timeless features of Star Wars has always been that it has adhered to a very clear "Good vs Evil" framework at its core.

Unless you are on the victorious side, then just following orders is perfectly fine.

We generally only punish the losers in conflict, do you think if Germany had won WW2 the orchestrators of the fire bombing of dresdin would not have been tried as war criminals? And I could name many other things.

History is written by the victors. (Not saying the nazi regime was not evil) just saying if your side wins then just following orders seems to be just fine.

Uneven punishment after warfare leads to things like WW2 if the world (specifically France) had not utterly crushed out the future of the German economy after WW1 we may not have had a second world war.

Lastly evil is very subjective, how many people did the rebels kill before alderon? How many terror style attacks were done in the name of the rebellion? In a conflict there is rarelly someone on the side of good, just groups with there own agendas doing what they have justified to peruse those agendas in the next of good.

 

Well, "just perfectly fine if you were the victor" is ambiguous.  It might be the case that people committing such atrocities under a victor are not legally punished or held accountable.  But that doesn't mean they haven't acted immorally.  Morality and legality are not always the same.

Also, to say that 'evil is subjective' is to fully embrace Moral Relativism, which very few ethicists, theologians, or philosophers have done throughout human history.  The vast majority of Ethical Theory is an attempt to identify the nature of an objective morality (independent of an individual's personal position or desires).  Otherwise you're not really talking about morality.

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AllWingsStandyingBy, on 05 Oct 2016 - 11:53 AM, said:AllWingsStandyingBy, on 05 Oct 2016 - 11:53 AM, said:

 

Cr0aker, on 05 Oct 2016 - 11:27 AM, said:Cr0aker, on 05 Oct 2016 - 11:27 AM, said:

For all its flaws it is the longest lasting government currently existing today.

Umm...what?  You might need to go back to history class.  Or else you're using some very loose interpretations of "lasting government," I suppose.

 

 

 

The usual definition is 'without major changes' and that is what hands it to the US.  I don't know all the nuances but people can argue what constitutes 'major changes' till blue in the face.  The other top 3 candidates are usually UK and Iceland, so your not off the mark there (however when the US came to be, king George exercised real power, and that has changed significantly since). 

Edited by Cr0aker

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As ethical theories and legal tribunals have found time and time again, "just following orders" is not a moral or legal justification that alleviates one of their culpability in a greater system. One always has the option to not follow orders. Biggs, Finn, and many others defected from the Empire/FO. Others sabotaged from the inside. Anyone could refuse to participate, even if meant their death. It's hard to imagine the operators of the super-laser could go back to their bunks after destroying Alderaan thinking "jeez..that was pretty bad...no that was terrible in fact..all those peoples...oh well, no blood on my hands, I was just following orders! I'm a good guy! Nothing I could have done differently! I had no choice!"PS: I know the vast majority of fans who say that the Empire are the good guys are obviously trolling. But I've met some who genuinely feel that way. and I think it's a product of modern nihilism and gritty morally-gray morally-ambiguous outlooks (which in reality is sometimes the case). But one of the timeless features of Star Wars has always been that it has adhered to a very clear "Good vs Evil" framework at its core.

Unless you are on the victorious side, then just following orders is perfectly fine.

We generally only punish the losers in conflict, do you think if Germany had won WW2 the orchestrators of the fire bombing of dresdin would not have been tried as war criminals? And I could name many other things.

History is written by the victors. (Not saying the nazi regime was not evil) just saying if your side wins then just following orders seems to be just fine.

Uneven punishment after warfare leads to things like WW2 if the world (specifically France) had not utterly crushed out the future of the German economy after WW1 we may not have had a second world war.

Lastly evil is very subjective, how many people did the rebels kill before alderon? How many terror style attacks were done in the name of the rebellion? In a conflict there is rarelly someone on the side of good, just groups with there own agendas doing what they have justified to peruse those agendas in the next of good.

 

Well, "just perfectly fine if you were the victor" is ambiguous.  It might be the case that people committing such atrocities under a victor are not legally punished or held accountable.  But that doesn't mean they haven't acted immorally.  Morality and legality are not always the same.

Also, to say that 'evil is subjective' is to fully embrace Moral Relativism, which very few ethicists, theologians, or philosophers have done throughout human history.  The vast majority of Ethical Theory is an attempt to identify the nature of an objective morality (independent of an individual's personal position or desires).  Otherwise you're not really talking about morality.

 

 

Moral Relativism is the spirit of the day.  I have a Christian friend that speaks at college campuses and he says it's not uncommon for him to run into kids who can't even commit to something as terrible as r a p e being wrong.

Edited by Boba Rick

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As ethical theories and legal tribunals have found time and time again, "just following orders" is not a moral or legal justification that alleviates one of their culpability in a greater system. One always has the option to not follow orders. Biggs, Finn, and many others defected from the Empire/FO. Others sabotaged from the inside. Anyone could refuse to participate, even if meant their death. It's hard to imagine the operators of the super-laser could go back to their bunks after destroying Alderaan thinking "jeez..that was pretty bad...no that was terrible in fact..all those peoples...oh well, no blood on my hands, I was just following orders! I'm a good guy! Nothing I could have done differently! I had no choice!"PS: I know the vast majority of fans who say that the Empire are the good guys are obviously trolling. But I've met some who genuinely feel that way. and I think it's a product of modern nihilism and gritty morally-gray morally-ambiguous outlooks (which in reality is sometimes the case). But one of the timeless features of Star Wars has always been that it has adhered to a very clear "Good vs Evil" framework at its core.

Unless you are on the victorious side, then just following orders is perfectly fine.

We generally only punish the losers in conflict, do you think if Germany had won WW2 the orchestrators of the fire bombing of dresdin would not have been tried as war criminals? And I could name many other things.

History is written by the victors. (Not saying the nazi regime was not evil) just saying if your side wins then just following orders seems to be just fine.

Uneven punishment after warfare leads to things like WW2 if the world (specifically France) had not utterly crushed out the future of the German economy after WW1 we may not have had a second world war.

Lastly evil is very subjective, how many people did the rebels kill before alderon? How many terror style attacks were done in the name of the rebellion? In a conflict there is rarelly someone on the side of good, just groups with there own agendas doing what they have justified to peruse those agendas in the next of good.

 

Well, "just perfectly fine if you were the victor" is ambiguous.  It might be the case that people committing such atrocities under a victor are not legally punished or held accountable.  But that doesn't mean they haven't acted immorally.  Morality and legality are not always the same.

Also, to say that 'evil is subjective' is to fully embrace Moral Relativism, which very few ethicists, theologians, or philosophers have done throughout human history.  The vast majority of Ethical Theory is an attempt to identify the nature of an objective morality (independent of an individual's personal position or desires).  Otherwise you're not really talking about morality.

 

 

Moral Relativism is the spirit of the day.  I have a Christian friend that speaks at college campuses and he says it's not uncommon for him to run into kids who can't even commit to something as terrible as r a p e being wrong.

 

Sure, but that doesn't make it a correct view.  Appeal to popularity is a fallacy.  There was a time when most people believed the Earth was flat, but that didn't make it right.

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