Editor’s Note: The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of anyone in this particular spot on the space-time continuum, or even in this universe. There are an infinite number of alternate realities. In some the Federation is evil, female crew members dress like Britney Spears and Lt. Sulu has sex appeal, so it should not be overly implausible that in at least one of these alternate realities the editors of National Review and National Review Online would know what a Romulan is.
The situation with the Romulan Empire is rapidly becoming the defining crisis of our age.
Over the course of this magazine’s four centuries (not counting the Great Interegnum during the Eugenics Wars, when conservatism was deemed a mental defect) National Review has always endeavored to chart a course balancing idealism with realism. Even in its infancy, facing the first great existential crisis of Old Earth, we argued for challenging aggression, whether in the form of the Soviet threat or the violence done to humanity through hubristic tinkering with the genetic code. We are proud to say that our opposition to the Soviets played its part in the prevention of one nuclear holocaust and saddened that our warnings fell on deaf ears before as so many of us were marched off to reeducation camps on the Mars colonies. After the Interregnum we counseled a different course when making first contact with the Klingons and the Romulans than that chosen by Starfleet Command. History has vindicated us on both scores, which is small comfort given the terrible price we all paid for Starfleet’s stubbornness.
We do not dredge up old memories merely to gloat. Rather to point out that history and consistency is on our side. Nancy IX, the current chair of the United Federation of Planets is a decent sort, but clearly out of her depth. Like all Pelosians, she lets her passions crowd out sound judgment. One needn’t be a Vulcan to grasp that logic does not hold much sway on Pelosi Prime. Indeed, it seems we should have learned our lesson when the planet Sigma Iotia II became an enormous cargo cult to 1920s Chicago mobs. But no, the Pelosians have developed an entire civilization based on a once obscure bit of political doggerel, “It Takes a Village,” and suddenly billions of Earthlings — yes, we’re still proud to use the word “Earthling” rather than the politically correct, galactically cosmopolitan, and toothy “Humanoid of Terran Extraction” — are willing to surrender their fate to race bound to the dictum that children are the greatest philosophers. Does no one remember Charlie X? Miri? The horrors of planet Triacus?
We have long been on record in our belief that much of the current crisis can be traced back to the baleful influence of rampant Picardism in the diplomatic corps. Ambassador Picard’s conviction that the “European Hegemony” was a lasting model for intergalactic peace has led us into one calamity after another (for this analysis always leaves out of the equation the Pax Americana which made the European Hegemony possible). Picard’s disagreements with the late Governor Worf stretch back to their service on the Enterprise-D and while the younger Worf was often too much of a hawk (or bird of prey, one might say) there can be no doubt that he had the better of the arguments when it came to the Romulans. No doubt he had learned important lessons from his father’s slaughter at the Katyn forest of the 23rd century, Khitomer. Picard, meanwhile, after a distinguished — but by no means perfect — military career became entranced with the 20th-century writings of Warren Christopher. Prior to Picard’s popularization, few remembered who Crhistopher was. Indeed, it’s been said that people forgot who Christopher was while they were still having conversations with him. A diplomat of no significant achievement in his own time, Christopher’s writings in a fusty privately published tome — Diplomacy: The Forgotten Imperative — nonetheless ensorcelled the former starship captain. Picard’s proposal, directly inspired by Christopher’s writings, to mandate that all phasers be limited to “light stun” deprived federation security officers from using deadly force and as a result untold millions died and billions more were sentenced to permanent slavery to the Borg collective. But all this, too, goes down the memory wormhole, only to pop-up at some later time and place when such memories provide no practical guidance to current affairs, serving instead for conversational fodder at academic junkets to Risa.
Now the Picardians and Pelosians have become natural allies and would-be quislings in the burgeoning showdown with the Romulans. The old adage that the “Prime Directive is not a suicide pact,” means nothing to them. Would that the spirit of James Kirk (contributing editor from 2261 to 2271, we’re proud to say) could be conjured at this moment. Who among us can forget those immortal words, “Praetor Pardek tear down this neutral zone!” What would Kirk think as he watched the Federation appease the Romulans, feeding the targ one limb at a time, as the Klingons say.
The Romulans are arming Cardasia to the gills while we stand idly by watching the Bajorans get slaughtered. The Pelosians, always eager to protect tribbles wherever they happen to sprout up, turn a blind eye to the fate of actual sentient humanoids and allies. Based on the most dubious science, they are willing to place a speed limit on warp drive, but images of actual Bajorans stacked like cordwood move them not a nanometer. We have had our disagreements with Klingons and Ferengi, but we can look on with nothing but admiration as they fulfill their promises and contracts with the Bajorans while we spend our days here on Earth debating whether the entirely defunct Organian Peace Treaty applies to non-signatories of that irrelevant piece of parchment. It’s enough to make one declare “Beam me up, Scotty. There’s no sign of intelligent life here.”