The home of the elite officer class is the holodeck. The Enterprise-D has a crew of over a thousand, and by a rough estimate, holodeck usage should be "every single person not currently on duty or asleep." But every time a command crew member wants a holodeck, there's one free. The greatest research and entertainment tool ever built is just sitting idle. Which means that the command crew have priority access, even though they already have the most interesting jobs. You think the ensign continually cleaning all those carpets doesn't want to log in to the deck the instant they're off-duty? Humanity hasn't evolved past such shallow pursuits. Even captains would rather indulge in bullshit like reenacting Jane Austen novels than spend their spare time on their own super-futuristic space ship.
Federation technology is explicitly designed to demand unnecessary human labor. Once you see it, you can't unsee it. Transporters could automatically maintain everything, but they force grunts to crawl through pipes and do it by hand. Even the captain has to read out the Stardate for their own log, when even Instagram automatically time stamps things for us right now.
The most brutal side of this class system was shown in The Next Generation episode "The Nth Degree." When Lieutenant (junior grade) Barclay built an intelligence-boosting system, sacrificing his autonomy to complete their mission by merging himself with the computer system, Captain Picard's first and only reaction was "Tear his brain out and kill him." Even after being told disconnection could be fatal.
"THANKS FOR SAVING EVERYTHING!"
No moral debate. No diplomatic reasoning. Picard has played it softly when aliens have commandeered the ship, imprisoned his crew, even sexually assaulted senior bridge officers. He's let Cardassian gun-runners escape for political bonuses. But when an utterly loyal junior rank starts acting above his station, the first and only option is lobotomy and death.
No wonder Cardassians think the Federation is hypocritical. At least Guls are honest about being an evil empire.
Enjoy more science-fiction with 5 Ways to Make Halo 5 Interesting and The Most Ludicrous Games in Terminator History
Luke improves Starfleet by writing Star Trek: Superior, tumbling, and responding to every new tweeter.
Starfleet is pretty Earth-centric for an intergalactic federation. Perhaps this is why Robert Evans argues that Star Wars is better than Star Trek in 4 Reasons Star Wars Is Better Than Star Trek? Eh, it's probably the glowing laser swords. Either way, Star Trek Federation is still worse than the Evil Empire. At least TIE Fighters had seatbelts. Read 5 Horrifying Implications of The Star Trek Universe and see how Starfleet lacks the most basic safety features.
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