This weekend, I managed to watch both ‘Who Watches The Watchers’, wherein Picard gets SHOT in the chest with a bow and arrow to uphold the Prime Directive, and ‘The Omega Glory’, wherein Kirk somehow manages to use the U.S. Constitution to alter the flow of two alien species on a faraway world, an action which Spock even remarks as a violation.  It was an interesting contrast, and one that I think led to the more problematic aspects of new Star Trek’s Kirk character, implying as it does that James T. Kirk will do whatever James T. Kirk wants, regardless of the situation.  Given Kathryn Janeway’s steadfast support of the Prime Directive in her long life-and-death struggle to make it home from the Delta Quadrant, you might have to grade Kirk down on that one, leading to today’s final frontier query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) reminds you that Captain Benjamin Sisko punched out an omniscient energy being, which isn’t really relevant to the question, but is awesome, asking: Which Starfleet Captain best upheld the principles of The United Federation of Planets?


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Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. I only know original and The Next Generation well enough to compare. From those two definitely Picard. Reasons are too numerous to list here, but I think everyone knows how different Kirk and Picard are as a captain.

  2. I’ve been watching a few episodes of DS9 lately, for the first time in years. Sisko was certainly given the most ethical quandaries to deal with, between the big war, alliances of former enemies, Section 31 antics, etc. The others shows seem pretty simple regarding both ethics and story-telling in comparison (although I still really like most of them).

  3. I wanted to say Mackenzie Calhoun just to see if anybody else knew of the character, but I really don’t think he stuck to the principles any more than Picard, Kirk or Sisko did. However, in relation to the situation Voyager was in compared to ships in Federation space, I think Janeway best upheld the principles of Starfleet. She bent and broke plenty of Starfleet rules, but where other ships might have tried a “survival of the fittest” method in an attempt to get home, she stuck to Starfleet principles more often than not. Given the circumstances, I think she did pretty well at keeping to the spirit of Starfleet principles.

  4. That’s a loaded question, especially when you consider that the actions of James T. Kirk and his crew REDFINED the rules of Starfleet and the UFP for future generations (eg. General Order 42/15: The Captain and First Officer must NOT be on the same Away team).

    But, as always, is there any greater example than…

    Darmok and Jilad at Tenagra.

    • i am not super familiar with most of the captains except Kirk…hey, I’m old and watched TOS as first run, but didn’t consistently watch the rest. I agree with DamienR that Kirk set the bad example that made all of the other captains better.

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