Mar 292010
 

Star Trek: Voyager premiered in 1995. There were a number of primary female characters:
Captain Janeway: irritating.
Engineer Belanna Torres: Scary semi-Klingon chick
Kes: Supposedly cute, but since she was only four or so years old… not a sex symbol.
Kes:

After three years, Kes, who was not the draw for the pimply male demographic that the producers had hoped for,  was booted off the show and replaced with the catsuited Borg character Seven Of Nine. Seven’s sole purpose was bucka-bucka-wow SEXSYMBOL. Seven:

Seven of Nine was played by actress Jeri Ryan, who prior to this was basically an unknown (one season on a one-season minor sci-fi show). The reason why her last name was Ryan was because she was married to one “Jack Ryan.” However, the two divorced in 1999 for reasons left largely unexplored publicly, although stress from separation due to Jeri’s work in Hollywood, CA on ST:V was claimed to have been a major part (Jack Ryan worked in Chicago). Notable also is that shortly after the divorce Jeri Ryan dated ST: Voyager producer Brannon Braga.

In 2003, Jack Ryan ran for an open US Senate seat from the state of Illinois on the Republican ticket. The two Ryans decided to allow the divorce records to be made public, but not the child custody records. Nevertheless, those records were also released by LA Superior Court Judge Robert Schnider, showing that the reason why Jeri had wanted a divorce from  Jack was because he wanted to do some, er, decidedly non-Traditional Family Values stuff with her in public venues. (So did most Star Trek fanboys who saw her in that silver catsuit.) Still, the release of this selacious info was enough to torpedo Jack Ryan’s run for the Senate; his spot on the Republican ticket was taken up at the last minute by noted nutjob and inevitable loser, Alan Keyes. Thus the election was won by another relative unknown, a twenty-year veteran of the Trinity United Church of Christ, an avowed “black liberation theology” institution. Given the complete disaster that was the Republican run for the Senate that year, the Democratic party didn’t really need to try very hard, and the candidate was able to basically walk in on the promise of Hope, Change, charisma and a complete lack of any real knowledge of him by the public. He did essentially the same thing four years later in a run for a somewhat higher office.

 Long story short, Jeri Ryan’s work on Voyager contributed to her getting a divorce. The divorce eventually led to Jack Ryan dropping out of a Senate race, which was then easily won by Barack Obama who used it as a springboard to the White House.

There are two good lessons to be drawn from that:
1) If the selection of a space-elf only a few years old to be the sex symbol on a Star Trek series can have massive and completely unpredictable long-term real-world consequences… then any long-term plan that relies on the future being predictable in detail stands a damned good chance of failing spectacularly.

2) Jack. Dude. Yer married to Jeri Fricken’ Ryan. You get to do the horizontal mambo with the hottest chick in Sci Fi EVAR. Be happy with that. Otherwise your libido can ruin not only your political career, but also the national economy for decades to come.

 Posted by at 1:43 am
  • Pat Flannery

    You wrote it yourself, but didn’t realize what you had uncovered:
    “Still, the release of this selacious info was enough to torpedo Jack Ryan’s run for the Senate”
    “selacious”…SELAcious…Sela…Romulan plot. 😉

  • Brianna

    The Keyes/Obama election was actually the first one I was eligible to vote for. I didn’t remember that Obama was the opponent until someone told this same story to me about 6 months ago, but I did remember looking at Keyes’s profile, thinking, “This guy is wacko,” and voting for his opponent.

    Sigh….

  • Michael Holt

    The fabled butterfly effect strikes again!

    Lesson (1) above is something that is lost on those who tend to see today as standing alone. That seems to be common to politicians, university professors of economics, and the like.

    Lesson (2) … well … I might have given some thought to alternative activities with someone like her.

    So Kes lost because she wasn’t hot enough? Damn shame. She was hot, in her own way. Both of the girls on that series were worth some time and energy, now that I think back on it.

  • James

    We need to find a warp-capable ship (a top-of-the-line model is preferred but a rusty Klingon P.O.S. will do in a pinch), slingshot around the sun, and go fix this mess along with a couple of personal messes.

    Damn the timeline or the consequences.

  • Michael Llaneza

    So the GOP complaint is “we tried running a pervert and a nutcase and we lost the election ?”

  • admin

    > So the GOP complaint is “we tried running a pervert and a nutcase and we lost the election ?”

    Yup. Perverts and nutcases belong in the DNC.

  • BParker

    So in other words, the GOP was tying to out DNC the DNC?

  • Brianna

    That’s what I figured when I saw Keyes during that election. I thought they were running him because he was black, on the premise that they had to out-diversify the Democrats, and that they had badly miscalculated since the average voter (conservative voter, anyway) truly does not give a damn anymore. Liberals do give a damn, in their backwards, Orwellian fashion, but if the R’s are running a black guy and the D’s are running a black guy, they’re going to go for the D black guy no matter what you do anyway, so they really should have just found a decent candidate and not worried about it.

  • Pat Flannery

    Keyes was most noted for his his belief that the Declaration Of Independence, not the Constitution, was what the government of the United States was based on.
    Of course, other than telling the British monarchy to screw itself, it really didn’t say much about how a government _should_ be run, but rather how it _shouldn’t_ be run.

  • Michael Holt

    The Declaration of Independence was a sales document aimed at the kings of France and Spain. Anyone who thinks it’s a significant legal document probably also believes the Ronco ads on late-night TV (are they still in business?).

    I didn’t know Keyes was black, All that does for me is to reinforce my opinion that the only substantive social issue in America is “race.”

  • Brianna

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they possess certain inalienable rights, amongst these life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted amongst men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed”

    You think this was not significant? That it says nothing to governments about how to govern? It probably ranks as one of the most significant and radical statements mankind has ever written, and it says volumes about how to govern. Not the nuts and bolts, but the principles involved. There’s a reason the schools now sometimes try to teach that this document was just a list of grievances against King George, and the preface doesn’t matter. The Declaration was far more than just a sales document or a notice to England that it could go screw itself. It was the first document to explicitly state the reason for government and what sort of government was legitimate and what was not. That is huge.

  • admin

    > That it says nothing to governments about how to govern?

    Strictly speaking? Well… not really. Remember, the US ran under the Articles of Confedeation for some years before finally ditching that system and going with the Constitution. Additionally, the Confederate States of America *also* saw the DoI as an imprtant foundational document, and their system was different still. There are any number opf nations with differing systems of governemnt that could have taken the DoI to heart.

    The DoI is a hell of a document, but it doesn’t really have the force of law, and really doesn’t say much of anything useful about how to form a government apart from “King George sucks” and “Democracy rules.” Considering that we do *not* live in a direct democracy and can nevertheless see the DoI as an important foundational document says a lot about how vague it is.

  • Brianna

    Not nuts-and-bolts. The fundamental principle involved. I get that it’s not a how-to manual, but I don’t think it can justifiably be called a mere “sales document” either.

  • Michael Holt

    The DoI is a fine statement of philosophy and intent, but it’s not a guidebook for governing. Both Jefferson and Adams saw it as the way to express why the colonies were unhappy. The intent was to attract support from Spain and France.

    The “free and equal” thing was seen by John Adams as a huge error. He suggested changing it to “”equal under the law,” but Jefferson refused. To have used Adams’ phrase would have saved lots of trouble later.

    What’s missed at this remove is that the whole thing — the entire Revolution, and all that went with it — was mostly driven by New England traders who had been selling weapons to the French during the French and Indian War, and who didn’t see themselves as British when taxes had to be paid. The southern colonies got into it, as best most can tell, in a rush of collegial enthusiasm: the tax and smuggling and trade-balance problems that angered the northern merchants were not in evidence in the south.

    John Locke’s writings were the theoretical basis for the writings associated with the United Colonies. Locke died in 1704. The greatest novelty of the what they were thinking in Philadelphia in 1776 was that they took action.

  • Brianna

    “The “free and equal” thing was seen by John Adams as a huge error. He suggested changing it to “”equal under the law,” but Jefferson refused. To have used Adams’ phrase would have saved lots of trouble later.”

    Gods, yes.

    “New England traders who had been selling weapons to the French during the French and Indian War”

    Really? I’d never heard that before.

    “The southern colonies got into it, as best most can tell, in a rush of collegial enthusiasm”

    That actually explains a lot.

    “John Locke’s writings were the theoretical basis for the writings associated with the United Colonies. Locke died in 1704. The greatest novelty of the what they were thinking in Philadelphia in 1776 was that they took action.”

    I know.

  • Pat Flannery

    I read a really good book about the French and Indian wars recently, and it pointed out some real screw-ups on the part of the British in how they handled the whole situation.
    To save money, instead of using regular British troops, they thought it would be a good idea to organize the colonial governments into militias that could defend their own territories, and when those militias came into contact with the Indian forces, they got a very good education in how to fight using guerrilla tactics, which the Indians excelled at.
    So, now there were colonial militias that knew how to use irregular tactics organized and ready to go. No problem on its own, but then the British started sticking taxes on the colonials to offset the costs of their own troops in their campaigns against the Indians and French, without explaining to the colonies that the taxes were directly related to their defense…so then you had a bunch of pissed-off colonials…that were organized into militias…and knew how to fight using irregular tactics…and then… 🙂

  • I’m willing to suspend my disbelief to enjoy a good show