Symbiosis: written by Robert Lewin
Written by RC Romine
“Symbiosis” is the twenty-second episode of the American science fiction television series Star Trek: The Next Generation. It first aired on April 18, 1988, in broadcast syndication.
Set in the 24th century, the series follows the adventures of the Starfleet crew of the Federation starship Enterprise-D. In this episode, Picard tries to mediate a trade dispute between two neighboring planets, one of which is the sole supplier of a drug to treat the other’s apparently fatal disease.
Here is where it parallels our history in America. Just think of what has happen during our nation’s addiction to the Con’s austerity economy, their stock market and the 401k and the radical politics driven by an addiction to racism and greed, superiority and arrogant ignorance.
“The Enterprise attempts to rescue the freighter Sanction, which has been disabled by a star’s magnetic field and is about to collide with a planet. An agreement is reached to transport over the crew of the freighter, but they surprisingly send over cargo barrels first. The Enterprise crew attempts to transport the freighter’s crew, but is only successful in recovering four of them before their ship is destroyed. Two, T’John and Romas , are scruffy and unshaven, while the other two, Sobi and Lango, are groomed and well dressed. They all show relief that the barrels made it over, and little remorse for the lost ship and crewmen. Both groups start to fight over the ownership of the barrel using some form of electrical shock attack from their bodies and are escorted to the observation lounge under guard.
The two pairs come from different planets within the same system. It is explained that the barrels contains felicium, a medicine for a plague which is ravaging the planet Ornara. The medicine is produced on the planet Brekka, but the Ornarans are the only race in the system with the means of space travel; however, the two remaining Ornaran ships were all built long ago and are beginning to fail due to overuse and lack of maintenance – and the Ornarans no longer know how to repair them. Captain Jean-Luc Picard offers to return them each to Ornara and provide replacement parts for the remaining freighters. The Brekkans, Sobi and Langor, argue that they retain ownership of the felicium, as the items the Ornarans offered in payment were lost on board the freighter. T’Jon and Romas, of Ornara, are suffering from the effects of the plague, and are sent to sickbay where Dr. Beverly Crusher can find no reason for their symptoms.
In a gesture of goodwill following the demand of compassion from Crusher, the Brekkans offer two doses of felicium for T’Jon and Romas’s immediate needs. Langor explains that the entire Brekkan economy and industry is devoted to producing the medicine for Ornara, whose inhabitants provide Brekka with the necessities of daily life in return. After T’Jon and Romas take their doses, Dr. Crusher realizes that felicium is actually a highly addictive narcotic, and the plague itself was cured long before, so the symptoms believed to be attributed to the plague are actually withdrawal symptoms. Crusher wants to offer assistance to aid the Ornarans in breaking free of their addiction, but Picard warns that the Federation cannot intervene due to the Prime Directive. He and Dr. Crusher later question the Brekkans alone and confirm that the Brekkans know the truth regarding the plague being eradicated, and the addictive nature of the medicine, and are consciously exploiting the Ornarans because Brekka’s economy would collapse if the Ornarans no longer needed felicium.
Now think about this, they supposedly saved us from the stakeholder economy and FDR’s new deal. Then they addicted us to their shareholder (Vampire) monopoly based economy. We have seen our wealth and certainty lost, our nation has faltered and yet so many are driven by an addiction to the drugs the Cons (Rich Conservative Authoritarians) push. They addicted us and then took everything. From a good paying jobs to a good education. There is indeed a lesson to be learned and a correlation to be seen!