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** TheFederation seems to run on a moneyless "New-World Economy" which is portrayed as a good thing...until they deal with cultures that still use money. Not so easy to do business with somebody who expects coins (or latinum) that you don't have.

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** This is perhaps best exemplified in a chain of events that starts with TNG's "Sins of the Father", which demonstrates that despite the CodeOfHonor that defines the Klingons' ProudWarriorRaceGuy image, corruption is InherentInTheSystem, with many Klingons doing what's best for themselves and to hell with what's best for the Empire.
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TheFederation seems to run on a moneyless "New-World Economy" which is portrayed as a good thing...until they deal with cultures that still use money. Not so easy to do business with somebody who expects coins (or latinum) that you don't have.

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** Speaking of which, this also provides another demonstration of an aforementioned point -- that humanity's "evolved sensibilities" (as Picard puts it) don't preclude hatred and the desire for vengeance. Lily Sloane is the one who makes this point, calling bullshit on Picard's self-righteous façade and making him realize that he's going [[MobySchtick Captain Ahab]] against the Borg for what they did to him.


** Garak suffers from claustrophobia so severe that it causes panic attacks, a fact that he kept secret until he needed to climb inside the walls of a prison camp to use a jury-rigged transmitter. Halfway through he freaks out so badly that he's almost catatonic, although he's eventually able to [[FaceYourFears face his fears]] and finish the job, he isn't cured by the end of the episode, and suffers several attacks in later episodes. In RealLife, overcoming severe phobias takes years of counselling, and often the best people can do is learning to manage their fear, rather than overcome it completely. Also, the whole experience was so visibly traumatising that the fact that he was even willing to attempt it earned him the respect of Worf and Martok, two [[ProudWarriorRace Klingon warriors.]]

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** Garak suffers from claustrophobia so severe that it causes panic attacks, a fact that he kept secret until he needed to climb inside the walls of a prison camp to use a jury-rigged transmitter.transmitter (though there ''had'' been [[RewatchBonus hints, if you'd been paying attention]]). Halfway through he freaks out so badly that he's almost catatonic, although he's eventually able to [[FaceYourFears face his fears]] and finish the job, he isn't cured by the end of the episode, and suffers several attacks in later episodes. In RealLife, overcoming severe phobias takes years of counselling, and often the best people can do is learning to manage their fear, rather than overcome it completely. Also, the whole experience was so visibly traumatising that the fact that he was even willing to attempt it earned him the respect of Worf and Martok, two [[ProudWarriorRace Klingon warriors.]]


* ''Series/StarTrekDiscovery'': The first officer of a ship knocks out her captain in an attempt to open fire on a Klingon ship without provocation (which was planning to fire on them anyway, as its commander is spoiling for war), and is held partly responsible for the subsequent battle in which over 8,000 Starfleet personnel are killed, including said captain. Reprimand on her record, maybe told she'll never be given command? Nope. Try conviction for mutiny, stripped of her status in Starfleet, and sentenced to life in prison. Not to mention the resetment of other Starfleet officers, who have lost friends and loved ones in that battle and the subsequent war.

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* ''Series/StarTrekDiscovery'': ''Series/StarTrekDiscovery'':
** Burnham clearly displays that if you take an emotionally traumatized Human child, then have them raised by Vulcans who teach the repression of all emotion, it's going to leave you with a seriously screwed-up adult who is incapable of handling emotions in a healthy way. Also that Vulcans--while they pursue the suppression of emotion--don't always manage to practice what they preach.
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The first officer of a ship knocks out her captain in an attempt to open fire on a Klingon ship without provocation (which was planning to fire on them anyway, as its commander is spoiling for war), and is held partly responsible for the subsequent battle in which over 8,000 Starfleet personnel are killed, including said captain. Reprimand on her record, maybe told she'll never be given command? Nope. Try conviction for mutiny, stripped of her status in Starfleet, and sentenced to life in prison. Not to mention the resetment of other Starfleet officers, who have lost friends and loved ones in that battle and the subsequent war.


** Two human crewmembers infiltrate a hostile alien ship using holographic disguises. They befriend a teacher aboard the ship. They then hatch a plan to kill everyone on the ship, except for the teacher and her students. They are successful, but instead of being grateful, the teacher and the children now resent humans even more, for killing their friends and loved ones.

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** Two human crewmembers infiltrate a hostile alien ship using holographic disguises. They befriend a teacher aboard the ship. They then hatch a plan to kill everyone on the ship, except for the teacher and her students. They are successful, but instead of being grateful, the teacher and the children now resent humans even more, for killing their friends and loved ones.ones.
** A humanoid culture practices electronic democracy. Does this now mean everything is decided in a fair and unbiased manner? Yeah, right. The episode reveals all the problems of social media and snap judgment, as evidenced when a girl decides that a guy is guilty based simply on the fact that she doesn't like his face. The crew also shows how easy it is to manipulate this system to get a desired outcome. As one character summarizes it (and this troper is paraphrasing), "opinion is not knowledge."


** A Starfleet doctor finds that something isn't quite right with an officer who spent several months as a POW. Does he confront him with a pair of security officers in tow? Does he put him in an isolation field? Nope, he tells it all to him while (mostly) alone in the room, and gets his neck snapped for his trouble. [[spoiler:He comes back to life, but only because of a convoluted sequence of events and because the showrunners were bombarded with criticism, since the doctor in question was gay.]]

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** A Starfleet doctor finds that something isn't quite right with an officer who spent several months as a POW. Does he confront him with a pair of security officers in tow? Does he put him in an isolation field? Nope, he tells it all to him while (mostly) alone in the room, and gets his neck snapped for his trouble. [[spoiler:He comes back to life, but only because of a convoluted sequence of events and because the showrunners were bombarded with criticism, since the doctor in question was gay.]]]]
* ''Series/TheOrville''. While the show is a light-hearted SpiritualSuccessor to ''Series/StarTrek'', it does deal with some serious issues, and this trope comes into effect more than once:
** A male-only culture deals with occasional female births by forcibly "correcting" their sex. One of the parents is convinced by human crewmates that it's okay to have a female child. The other parents (himself originally born female) demands that the child undergo "correction". The case goes to court on that race's homeworld. The humans make a compelling case and even bring out a famous philosopher of that culture, who turns out to be an "uncorrected" female. And the court... finds no reason to delay the procedure. It turns out it's incredibly difficult to change a deeply-set cultural belief. Furthermore, the issue crops up later, when it's revealed that the first parent still hasn't forgiven the other for forcing their child to undergo the procedure. The same culture also considers heterosexuality to be a crime, and one of the most bitter heterophobes is the one who was once a female.
** A crewmember accidentally causes a primitive culture to develop religion. Analogous to our own history, this religion eventually warps the message of peace and kindness into forced obedience and the local analog of UsefulNotes/TheSpanishInquisition. When the same crewmember (who is considered a deity there) confronts the Pope analog and convinces him to change the religion, he is promptly murdered by his underling, who doesn't wish to give up the power.
** Two human crewmembers infiltrate a hostile alien ship using holographic disguises. They befriend a teacher aboard the ship. They then hatch a plan to kill everyone on the ship, except for the teacher and her students. They are successful, but instead of being grateful, the teacher and the children now resent humans even more, for killing their friends and loved ones.


* ''Series/StarTrekDiscovery'': The first officer of a ship knocks out her captain in an attempt to open fire on a Klingon ship without provocation (which was planning to fire on them anyway, as its commander is spoiling for war), and is held partly responsible for the subsequent battle in which over 8,000 Starfleet personnel are killed, including said captain. Reprimand on her record, maybe told she'll never be given command? Nope. Try conviction for mutiny, stripped of her status in Starfleet, and sentenced to life in prison.

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* ''Series/StarTrekDiscovery'': The first officer of a ship knocks out her captain in an attempt to open fire on a Klingon ship without provocation (which was planning to fire on them anyway, as its commander is spoiling for war), and is held partly responsible for the subsequent battle in which over 8,000 Starfleet personnel are killed, including said captain. Reprimand on her record, maybe told she'll never be given command? Nope. Try conviction for mutiny, stripped of her status in Starfleet, and sentenced to life in prison. Not to mention the resetment of other Starfleet officers, who have lost friends and loved ones in that battle and the subsequent war.
** While the ''Discovery'' has a new means of propulsion that allow it to teleport anywhere in the galaxy in the blink of an eye, making her the fastest ship in the fleet, she is still a science vessel, not a front-line warship. This is shown when the ''Discovery'' comes to the rescue of the ''Gagarin'', which is outnumbered by Klingon warships, all of which now have cloaking devices. The result? The ''Gagarin'' is lost with all hands anyway, and the ''Discovery'' sustains heavy damage and is forced to flee.
** How does the spore drive work? By using a living being for navigation. Lieutenant Stamets finds a way around keeping that living being caged by injecting himself with its DNA and using his own body for spore drive navigation. Except such an act is illegal under Federation law, and in Season 2 the spore drive is relegated to "emergencies only".
** A Starfleet doctor finds that something isn't quite right with an officer who spent several months as a POW. Does he confront him with a pair of security officers in tow? Does he put him in an isolation field? Nope, he tells it all to him while (mostly) alone in the room, and gets his neck snapped for his trouble. [[spoiler:He comes back to life, but only because of a convoluted sequence of events and because the showrunners were bombarded with criticism, since the doctor in question was gay.]]


** The pilot episode "[[{{Recap/StarTrekDeepSpaceNineS01E01E02Emissary}} Emissary]]" shows Sisko fighting at Wolf 359, where his wife, a civilian scientist living with him on the ship, was killed when their ship was damaged, proving that if you have families on board starships, eventually there will be casualties. Also, Sisko was openly hostile to Captain Picard when they met, even though he knew Picard wasn't in control of himself, it's hard to be friendly with the human face of the force that killed the person you love.

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** The pilot episode "[[{{Recap/StarTrekDeepSpaceNineS01E01E02Emissary}} Emissary]]" shows Sisko fighting at Wolf 359, where his wife, a civilian scientist living with him on the ship, was killed when their ship was damaged, proving that if you have families on board starships, eventually there will be casualties. Also, Sisko was openly hostile to Captain Picard when they met, even though he knew [[CartesianKarma Picard wasn't in control of himself, himself]], it's hard to be friendly with the human face of the force that killed the person you love.

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** In "Soldiers of the Empire", General Martok is given command of the Bird-of-Prey ''Rotarran'' and sent on a dangerous mission. It's an exciting opportunity for a [[ProudWarriorRaceGuy Klingon]] -- and one that he almost screws up, as he was recently rescued from a Dominion POWCamp where he was held for two years, and his warrior's instincts and reflexes are rusty, to say nothing of the emotional trauma that has him doubting himself and almost afraid of battle. It takes Worf attempting a KlingonPromotion for Martok to get his groove back and lead his forces to their first victory.


* ''Series/StarTrekDiscovery'': The first officer of a ship knocks out her captain in an attempt to open fire on a Klingon ship without provocation, and is held partly responsible for the subsequent battle in which over 8,000 Starfleet personnel are killed, including said captain. Reprimand on her record, maybe told she'll never be given command? Nope. Try conviction for mutiny, stripped of her status in Starfleet, and sentenced to life in prison.

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* ''Series/StarTrekDiscovery'': The first officer of a ship knocks out her captain in an attempt to open fire on a Klingon ship without provocation, provocation (which was planning to fire on them anyway, as its commander is spoiling for war), and is held partly responsible for the subsequent battle in which over 8,000 Starfleet personnel are killed, including said captain. Reprimand on her record, maybe told she'll never be given command? Nope. Try conviction for mutiny, stripped of her status in Starfleet, and sentenced to life in prison.


** [[spoiler:The Vengeance is heavily automated; in an emergency, a single person can pilot it. But it has very little crew to repel boarders.]]

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** [[spoiler:The Vengeance is heavily automated; in an emergency, a single person can pilot it. But it has very little crew to repel boarders.]]]]
* ''Series/StarTrekDiscovery'': The first officer of a ship knocks out her captain in an attempt to open fire on a Klingon ship without provocation, and is held partly responsible for the subsequent battle in which over 8,000 Starfleet personnel are killed, including said captain. Reprimand on her record, maybe told she'll never be given command? Nope. Try conviction for mutiny, stripped of her status in Starfleet, and sentenced to life in prison.

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** In "Reunion", Duras murders Worf's mate, K'Ehleyr, for [[HeKnowsTooMuch getting too close to the truth]] about the Khitomer Massacre, and Worf [[RoaringRampageOfRevenge kills him in revenge]]. Perfectly SOP for a Klingon -- but not for a Starfleet officer, as Picard makes clear afterwards. As a result, Worf ends up with a reprimand on his record.

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** Played for laughs in "[[https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Recap/StarTrekDeepSpaceNineS05E25InTheCards In the Cards]]" as Jake wants to bid on a rare baseball card. Having grown up in a Federation that long did away with a monetary system, Jake honestly doesn't grasp things like the cost of something valuable. He thinks simply offering anything of Nog's will make up the cost of the card and Nog (whose entire culture revolves around profit) has to educate Jake on how these things work.


* In ''Film/StarTrekIIITheSearchForSpock'', Kirk and his senior officers successfully steal the ''Enterprise'' for an unauthorized trip to Genesis planet. Certainly an awesome feat...until they end up going into battle in a half-crippled starship and end up disabled.

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* In ''Film/StarTrekIIITheSearchForSpock'', Kirk and his senior officers successfully steal the ''Enterprise'' for an unauthorized trip to Genesis planet. Certainly an awesome feat...until they end up going into battle in a half-crippled starship and end up disabled.completely disabled, forcing them to [[SelfDestructMechanism self-destruct]] the ''Enterprise'' rather than letting the Klingons capture her.
** ''Film/StarTrekIVTheVoyageHome'' then shows that as legendarily heroic as they're considered and as well-intentioned as their actions were, crimes such as theft, sabotage, and insubordination can't be simply overlooked. The only reason they don't all get cashiered (and likely imprisoned) is because they save Earth from an alien probe; even so, Admiral Kirk gets demoted to Captain (which, for him, is more like {{Unishment}}).


* In the famous ''Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries'' episode "[[{{Recap/StarTrekS1E28TheCityOnTheEdgeOfForever}} The City on the Edge of Forever]]" Kirk and Spock travel back in time to Depression-era New York in order to avert a disastrous event that changed history, but they don't know what it is. Fortunately for them, the information is stored on their tricorders. Their tricorders are damaged and Spock works to fix them, but he quickly finds it almost impossible. No matter how smart Spock is, the tricorder is centuries ahead of the most cutting-edge technology available at the time, and he's been trained to use highly advanced tools in a time where getting a pound of pure gold or platinum for your amateur electronics project is a simple matter. Imagine trying to rebuild a computer with the contents of a medieval blacksmith's forge to get an idea of just how much of a challenge he's facing - Spock compares it to working with "stone knives and bearskins". He's reduced to using consumer-grade electrical goods such as lightbulbs and radio sets, and can only get a few seconds of functionality out of the tricorder after weeks of work and constructing a rudimentary circuit board the size of a bed. Also, in order to buy those materials he and Kirk need to work menial odd jobs and live in a homeless shelter, and in order to fit in they steal clothes off a clothesline... where they are promptly confronted by a police officer.

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* In the famous ''Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries'' episode "[[{{Recap/StarTrekS1E28TheCityOnTheEdgeOfForever}} The City on the Edge of Forever]]" Kirk and Spock travel back in time to Depression-era New York in order to avert a disastrous event that changed history, but they don't know what it is. Fortunately for them, the information is stored on their tricorders. Their tricorders are damaged and Spock works to fix them, but he quickly finds it almost impossible. No matter how smart Spock is, the tricorder is centuries ahead of the most cutting-edge technology available at the time, and he's been trained to use highly advanced tools in a time where getting a pound of pure gold or platinum for your amateur electronics project is a simple matter. Imagine trying to rebuild a computer with the contents of a medieval blacksmith's forge to get an idea of just how much of a challenge he's facing - -- Spock compares it to working with "stone knives and bearskins". He's reduced to using consumer-grade electrical goods such as lightbulbs and radio sets, and can only get a few seconds of functionality out of the tricorder after weeks of work and constructing a rudimentary circuit board the size of a bed. Also, in order to buy those materials he and Kirk need to work menial odd jobs and live in a homeless shelter, and in order to fit in they steal clothes off a clothesline... where they are promptly confronted by a police officer.



** "[[{{Recap/StarTrekDeepSpaceNineS06E19InThePaleMoonlight}} In the Pale Moonlight]]" is built entirely around this trope. Reality repeatedly clashes with Captain Sisko's and Starfleet's lofty ideals (symbolizing the ''[[Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration TNG]]'' era of Star Trek), first to the point of breaking and then rapidly beyond. At the start of the episode (and in the episodes leading up to it), Sisko notes how his belief that Starfleet could win the Dominion War is slowly being eroded, as more and more war casualty lists keep streaming in. Betazed, one of the Federation's paradise worlds, is then conquered by the enemy. As per Starfleet's idiom, Sisko hopes diplomacy can convince their ''sworn enemies'', the Romulans, to join the war; but Dax ''instantly'' yanks him back to reality by demonstrating how astronomically unlikely it would be. Against his own moral compass, Sisko decides to use ''fake evidence'' to convince the Romulans to join, and has to hire one of the most dangerous men on [=DS9=] - Garak - to handle the matter for him. Things only get worse from there, with Sisko having to pay for the work in advanced medical contraband that could be used to make ''a biological weapon''. Yeah. Oh, and then there's [[spoiler: the murders]]. In his ultimate monologue, [[spoiler: Garak slaps Reality in Sisko's face so hard that he is forced to acknowledge his own crimes]]. No wonder this is sometimes considered the darkest episode in ''Star Trek'' history.

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** "[[{{Recap/StarTrekDeepSpaceNineS06E19InThePaleMoonlight}} In the Pale Moonlight]]" is built entirely around this trope. Reality repeatedly clashes with Captain Sisko's and Starfleet's lofty ideals (symbolizing the ''[[Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration TNG]]'' era of Star Trek), first to the point of breaking and then rapidly beyond. At the start of the episode (and in the episodes leading up to it), Sisko notes how his belief that Starfleet could win the Dominion War is slowly being eroded, as more and more war casualty lists keep streaming in. Betazed, one of the Federation's paradise worlds, is then conquered by the enemy. As per Starfleet's idiom, Sisko hopes diplomacy can convince their ''sworn enemies'', the Romulans, to join the war; but Dax ''instantly'' yanks him back to reality by demonstrating how astronomically unlikely it would be. Against his own moral compass, Sisko decides to use ''fake evidence'' to convince the Romulans to join, and has to hire one of the most dangerous men on [=DS9=] - -- Garak - -- to handle the matter for him. Things only get worse from there, with Sisko having to pay for the work in advanced medical contraband that could be used to make ''a biological weapon''. Yeah. Oh, and then there's [[spoiler: the murders]]. In his ultimate monologue, [[spoiler: Garak slaps Reality in Sisko's face so hard that he is forced to acknowledge his own crimes]]. No wonder this is sometimes considered the darkest episode in ''Star Trek'' history.



* ''Franchise/StarTrek'' as a whole had a tendency to [[PlanetOfHats establish alien cultures based around a single trait]], and create main characters that embodied them: Spock as the epitome of Vulcan emotionless logic, Worf as an honorable Klingon, Quark as a greedy Ferengi, Deanna Troi as a compassionate empathetic Betazoid, etc. Then, they would introduce characters that were the exact opposite of the stereotypes, for instance, a lot of Vulcans were shown to be smug, prejudiced and arrogant; many Klingons were cowards and bullies; Rom and Nog were terrible businessmen but great engineers with good hearts; and Lwaxana Troi was a man-chasing still-attractive older woman and a bit of a drama queen. Real- life cultures are not totally homogeneous, and even in societies built around a single ideal, some people either won't measure up or will chose not to follow that ideal, we shouldn't expect aliens to be stereotypes any more than we would expect people to be.

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* ''Franchise/StarTrek'' as a whole had a tendency to [[PlanetOfHats establish alien cultures based around a single trait]], and create main characters that embodied them: Spock as the epitome of Vulcan emotionless logic, Worf as an honorable Klingon, Quark as a greedy Ferengi, Deanna Troi as a compassionate empathetic Betazoid, etc. Then, they would introduce characters that were the exact opposite of the stereotypes, for instance, a lot of Vulcans were shown to be smug, prejudiced and arrogant; many Klingons were cowards and bullies; Rom and Nog were terrible businessmen but great engineers with good hearts; and Lwaxana Troi was a man-chasing still-attractive older woman and a bit of a drama queen. Real- life Real-life cultures are not totally homogeneous, and even in societies built around a single ideal, some people either won't measure up or will chose not to follow that ideal, we shouldn't expect aliens to be stereotypes any more than we would expect people to be.

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