Treecat Legal Status

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David T. Shaw

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
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I have been contemplating the treatment that Nimitz received at the
hands of Cordellia Ransom (in IEH), and wondering if, strictly in a
legal sense, it was justified.
Assuming a treecat is viewed as nothing more than an intelligent pet
(sure, we know better, but I am talking about the Honorverse at large
here) then I can see him being taken away and destroyed– especially
since he is manifestly dangerous. I don’t really think that much of the
civilized worlds would object to strongly to the death of a dangerous
pet.
So, the question is: “Can the Republic of Haven justifiably treat a
treecat as nothing more than a pet?” Obviously, anyone who has been
bonded would answer that question in the negative, they know that tree
cats are people. But has the Star Kingdom attempted to let the rest of
the universe know?
I doubt it– in fact, I think that the Star Kingdom is somewhat
hypocritical about the whole issue. Think about it, Treecats are an
exception to the “No pets rule” of the RMN. This, if only obliquely,
seems to indicate that many might consider them no more than pets.
Then there is the much ballyhooed Naval rule that bonded treecats are
to be treated as members of the navy– for example, if a female treecat
gets pregnant, the bondie gets placed on maternity leave. However, at
the treecats paid to be in the navy? Do they have any sort of official
status on a ships Table of Organization? Do they have a rank? And if
they are crew members, why don’t they get Single-suits issued to them
(correct me if I’m wrong, and I very well might be on this point, but I
was under the impression that even the safety boxes that they ride in
are bought and installed at the bonded person’s expense).
Another piece of evidence of treecat’s non-people status is the
reaction of the Sphinxian Forestry Service to all those tree cats
wishing to accompany Honor to Grayson– they came in to save them from
her, rather than to reason with them. I am sure there are other
incidences– Treecats probably can’t testify in court (I know they can’t
speak, but they could identify whether the accused was present at an
event or not, they understand people-speak), own land, or have
representatives at court (I mean official ambassadors, not just the
reigning monarch’s bond-mate).
With all of this, I imagine that Haven could make a justifiable case
that Treecats are mere animals.
What I would like to see is for the navy to treat their cats as crew,
give them rank (I suggest “Specialist Special Class” or the like to keep
them out of the chain of command, and directly responsible to their
bonded-humans), get paid (only a pittance), feed by the navy (including
a celery allowance) and fitted with their own skin-suit. This would
give them official status, and force any captured to be treated under
whatever conventions apply to captured soldiers.
Legal changes on the civilian side of the Kingdom I leave as an
exercise for the news-group.
David T. Shaw
P.S. Due to the scary things that I have read about stupid lawsuits, I
hereby declare that this, and all of my postings, are mere musings upon
a fictional universe. I renounce all proprietary rights, and cede them
to TOWiDW to use if he so desires (or more likely that he has already
thought of them). DTS.

Jaco van Buren

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
to

<snip>

> But has the Star Kingdom attempted to let the rest of
>the universe know?
> I doubt it– in fact, I think that the Star Kingdom is somewhat
>hypocritical about the whole issue.

I tend to disagree. The general population of Sphinx is somewhat ignorant
about the whole treecat situation. As stated in the series [at at the moment
I have no intention of look up a quote] it isn't generally known that
treecats are toolmakers.
Most of those who are adopted end up in the forestry department. Treecats
aren't all that common a presence on a ship. The fact that Honor *is*
adopted distorts our view of the world a bit.
So the RMN isn't hypocritical about it, it hasn't thought is well through.
The knowledge about the workings of the bond aren't well researched. And by
the time the RMN had to face the fact that bonded pair might become POW it
had other things on it mind, like surviving.

>However, at
>the treecats paid to be in the navy? Do they have any sort of official
>status on a ships Table of Organization? Do they have a rank?

If have the feeling of the universe correct, the anwser would be NO, NO, NO.
They don't do any work, so they aren't paid, have no official status, except
half of a pair. And you can see the idiocy of assigning them a rank.

>And if
>they are crew members, why don’t they get Single-suits issued to them
>(correct me if I’m wrong, and I very well might be on this point, but I
>was under the impression that even the safety boxes that they ride in
>are bought and installed at the bonded person’s expense).

Economic reasons. A safety box is enough in view of what they do on a ship.
I am not putting Nimitz down. [He is a wonderful person and I agree with a
lot of his notions of humanity. Then again, sensing emotions and being a
member of a telepathic race has some advantages.]

<snip>


> With all of this, I imagine that Haven could make a justifiable case
>that Treecats are mere animals.


You thing HAVEN would let itself be influenced by things like 'legal
status'. I doubt our dear friend Cordelia Randsom would have acted any
different if she had known how the bond Honor/Nimitz worked. I would even
think that she would have settled for FIRST torturing Nimitz and then going
on with Honor. This would have extended her 'fun' for soo much longer. [I
apolize for my suggestion, but I have yet to meet an extremist who wouldn't
sink any lower than normal folks thing possible].

> What I would like to see is for the navy to treat their cats as crew,
>give them rank (I suggest “Specialist Special Class” or the like to keep
>them out of the chain of command, and directly responsible to their
>bonded-humans), get paid (only a pittance), feed by the navy (including
>a celery allowance) and fitted with their own skin-suit. This would
>give them official status, and force any captured to be treated under
>whatever conventions apply to captured soldiers.


Not very smart. See above.

- - - - - - - - - -
Jaco van Buren

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Lying is a skill just like any other.
It needs to be practiced!

(DS9: Garak to Julian Bashir)
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


PS: By the way David, your caveat is joke I hope? Things haven't gotten to
the stage that for us to participate in the group we have to sign a way the
rights to our postings???? If so, I give up on the joke the US calls a legal
system.


John Moreno

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
to
In article <365E3F...@icom.ca>, David T. Shaw <dav...@icom.ca> wrote:

> I have been contemplating the treatment that Nimitz received at the
> hands of Cordellia Ransom (in IEH), and wondering if, strictly in a
> legal sense, it was justified.

No, but then neither was the treatment of Honor or the intended
treatment of the rest of her people.

> Assuming a treecat is viewed as nothing more than an
> intelligent pet (sure, we know better, but I am talking about the
> Honorverse at large here) then I can see him being taken away and
> destroyed– especially since he is manifestly dangerous. I don’t
> really think that much of the civilized worlds would object to
> strongly to the death of a dangerous pet.

Treecat's have been declared a sentient species by Manticore and a 3rd
of Sphinx has been reserved for their exclusive use.

> So, the question is: “Can the Republic of Haven justifiably
> treat a treecat as nothing more than a pet?” Obviously, anyone who
> has been bonded would answer that question in the negative, they know

> that tree cats are people. But has the Star Kingdom attempted to let


> the rest of the universe know?

I'm sure it's been published -- just how much attention the rest of the
universe pays to it is another matter (it's been at least several
centuries since it would have been announced and beyond their empathic
ability there isn't any reason for the general public to be interested
in them).

> I doubt it– in fact, I think that the Star Kingdom is somewhat

> hypocritical about the whole issue. Think about it, Treecats are an
> exception to the “No pets rule” of the RMN. This, if only obliquely,
> seems to indicate that many might consider them no more than pets.

They are also exceptions to the "no civilians" of the RMN. However you
look at it they are allowed aboard warships where others aren't.

> Then there is the much ballyhooed Naval rule that bonded
> treecats are to be treated as members of the navy– for example, if a
> female treecat gets pregnant, the bondie gets placed on maternity
> leave.

They can't be separated (if they could the Navy would just refuse to
allow them aboard) and leaving them aboard puts the unborn in danger of
being born deformed. They aren't being treated as members of the Navy,
they are being treated like pregnant people (keep them away from toxic
materials).

> However, at the treecats paid to be in the navy? Do they
> have any sort of official status on a ships Table of Organization?
> Do they have a rank?

No, no, no. Nor should they be (with the possible exception of
treecats bonded to marines in which case they might make useful scouts
in some situations).

> And if they are crew members, why don’t they get Single-suits issued
> to them (correct me if I’m wrong, and I very well might be on this
> point, but I was under the impression that even the safety boxes that
> they ride in are bought and installed at the bonded person’s
> expense).

They don't get skin-suits because until Paul nobody had considered
making them -- a unfortunate oversight but not inexplicable.

As for the safety boxes -- I'm not sure what their responsibility in
that regards should be.

> Another piece of evidence of treecat’s non-people status is
> the reaction of the Sphinxian Forestry Service to all those tree cats
> wishing to accompany Honor to Grayson– they came in to save them from
> her, rather than to reason with them.

To the best of their knowledge 'Cats are retarded (at least compared to
humans) and are probably considered unable to make some types of
decisions. And they do have a communication problem (rather difficult
to "reason" with someone you can't speak to).

> I am sure there are other incidences– Treecats probably can’t testify
> in court (I know they can’t speak, but they could identify whether
> the accused was present at an event or not, they understand
> people-speak),

Without a better ability to communicate I don't think they would (or
should) allow them to testify.

> own land, or have representatives at court (I mean official
> ambassadors, not just the reigning monarch’s bond-mate).

I'm sure they can't sell the land that has been reserved for them --
I'm not at all convinced that they couldn't otherwise own property. As
for official ambassador -- that has the same problem as above; no
langauge.

> With all of this, I imagine that Haven could make a
> justifiable case that Treecats are mere animals.

I doubt it -- even if all that you imply is true, your treatment of a
person is not justified by /others/ treatment. Manticore could have a
"capture, torture and then eat" policy and that would not make it any
more legal for Haven to mistreat them.

> What I would like to see is for the navy to treat their cats
> as crew, give them rank (I suggest “Specialist Special Class” or the
> like to keep them out of the chain of command, and directly
> responsible to their bonded-humans), get paid (only a pittance), feed
> by the navy (including a celery allowance) and fitted with their own
> skin-suit. This would give them official status, and force any
> captured to be treated under whatever conventions apply to captured
> soldiers.

This is a remarkably bad idea in every way (with the exception of the
skin-suit).

> Legal changes on the civilian side of the Kingdom I leave as
> an exercise for the news-group.

Legal changes in the Kingdom will have to await their ability to
communicate more effectively (and are unlikely to be immediately
forthcoming even then -- they have a very stable situation and don't
really have a great need for a change in the way they are treated [for
example, you mention their testifying in court, it's my opinion that
would present no difficulty once they have learned sign]).

--
John Moreno

"Are you prepared to strike another blow for freedom?"
"Is that what we're doing?"
"No, but it sounds better than helping a wealthy and powerful aristocat
maintain his wealth and power."

john jordan III

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
to
I noted that no one has wondered why the Treecat's have not learned
to write or at least peck out a message on a keyboard. The ablity to
learn sign has been disscussed but I don' remember any other non
telapathic communications mentioned, I might be wrong.

The cat's have had hand's mentioned several times, also Nimitz has
learned to use the keypad's that opporate the ship's internal transport
system, to get around the ships he has been in.

It seems to me that they are more than smart enough to learn to
read and write. Do they have some racial or cultural block, or are they
hidding the ablity. I vote they are hidding the ablity as they are so
much else, they do seem to be keeping their cards close to their vests.

Just my muddled two cents worth.

JJ


David G. Bell

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
to
In article <phenix-27111...@roxboro0-035.dyn.interpath.net>
phe...@interpath.com "John Moreno" writes:

> As for the safety boxes -- I'm not sure what their responsibility in
> that regards should be.

The Navy would be foolish not to specify test standards for the
attachment points, and obviously power and life support connections
would have to meet standards. Basically, the Navy wouldn't want these
things to break free and go bouncing around the cabin. Bad for the
treecat, and it would disable the human. It's very likely that the
people who bond with treecats are special enough for it to be worth the
Navy subsidising the hardware cost.


--
David G. Bell -- Farmer, SF Fan, Filker, and Punslinger.


David T. Shaw

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
to
Jaco van Buren wrote:
>
> <snip>

> > But has the Star Kingdom attempted to let the rest of
> >the universe know?
> > I doubt it– in fact, I think that the Star Kingdom is somewhat
> >hypocritical about the whole issue.
>
> I tend to disagree. The general population of Sphinx is somewhat ignorant
> about the whole treecat situation. As stated in the series [at at the moment
> I have no intention of look up a quote] it isn't generally known that
> treecats are toolmakers.
> Most of those who are adopted end up in the forestry department. Treecats
> aren't all that common a presence on a ship. The fact that Honor *is*
> adopted distorts our view of the world a bit.
> So the RMN isn't hypocritical about it, it hasn't thought is well through.
> The knowledge about the workings of the bond aren't well researched. And by
> the time the RMN had to face the fact that bonded pair might become POW it
> had other things on it mind, like surviving.
>
Perhaps. I admit that I have too much faith in a bureaucracy to see an
obvious trouble spot and take action to solve it........ And it is true
that prior to the present war, the RMN seemed mostly to experience
combat in an anti-piracy role, which is a situation that you don't count
on the rules of war being followed by your enemy.

> >However, at
> >the treecats paid to be in the navy? Do they have any sort of official
> >status on a ships Table of Organization? Do they have a rank?
>

> If have the feeling of the universe correct, the anwser would be NO, NO, NO.
> They don't do any work, so they aren't paid, have no official status, except
> half of a pair. And you can see the idiocy of assigning them a rank.

Actually, those were idiotic questions, the answer is no for them all.
When I was writing them I think I was trying for some sort of rhetorical
device, and faied miserably....

>
> >And if
> >they are crew members, why don’t they get Single-suits issued to them
> >(correct me if I’m wrong, and I very well might be on this point, but I
> >was under the impression that even the safety boxes that they ride in
> >are bought and installed at the bonded person’s expense).
>

> Economic reasons. A safety box is enough in view of what they do on a ship.
> I am not putting Nimitz down. [He is a wonderful person and I agree with a
> lot of his notions of humanity. Then again, sensing emotions and being a
> member of a telepathic race has some advantages.]
>

Granted. But, my question stands - who purchases the box? I don't
know, but I do know that Honor upgraded her old box with her prize
money. I think that indicates that they are purchased by the bonded
humans, the RMN doesn't seem to be the sort of outfit that skimps on
equipment...

> <snip>


> > With all of this, I imagine that Haven could make a justifiable case
> >that Treecats are mere animals.
>

> You thing HAVEN would let itself be influenced by things like 'legal
> status'. I doubt our dear friend Cordelia Randsom would have acted any
> different if she had known how the bond Honor/Nimitz worked. I would even
> think that she would have settled for FIRST torturing Nimitz and then going
> on with Honor. This would have extended her 'fun' for soo much longer. [I
> apolize for my suggestion, but I have yet to meet an extremist who wouldn't
> sink any lower than normal folks thing possible].


Granted, I think the Cordelia Ransom would do whatever she felt like.
But, I doubt that if Treecats were officially classed as ‘people” she
would have ordered Nimitz’s summary executive on a Tri-V recording. at
any rate, you don't set up the rules of war for sadistic paranoids, but
rather in the hope that you enemy has some sense of honour (or at least
see how following the rules helps there personnel who are now POWs).
My point is that I think that the Treecat presence in naval vessels is
somewhat fuzzy. They need some sort of official status. As a point of
reference, does anyone know if members of the K-9 corps have every been
captured? If so, what happened to the dogs?
My suggestion of the rank of “Specialist Special Class” was to give the
Treecat some official status, and therefore entitled to treatment under
the rules of war. I suppose that they could be listed as official
non-combatants, but I have no idea what the rules would be. If there
was a reporter on a captured ship, what would be his status? Returned
to the Star Kingdom, or held as a citizen of a hostile government? What
if the report took up arms during the boarding operation or resisted
after the ship had been taken? That is why I wanted a rank (no matter
how nominal) so that the ‘cats would be official members of the RMN and
held at the same facility (in cages no doubt, but at least they could be
visited by their humans).
Once again, I am assuming that the enemy will follow the rules of war
to the best of their ability.


>
> > What I would like to see is for the navy to treat their cats as crew,
> >give them rank (I suggest “Specialist Special Class” or the like to keep
> >them out of the chain of command, and directly responsible to their
> >bonded-humans), get paid (only a pittance), feed by the navy (including
> >a celery allowance) and fitted with their own skin-suit. This would
> >give them official status, and force any captured to be treated under
> >whatever conventions apply to captured soldiers.
>

> Not very smart. See above.
>
> - - - - - - - - - -
> Jaco van Buren
>
> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
> Lying is a skill just like any other.
> It needs to be practiced!
>
> (DS9: Garak to Julian Bashir)
> - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
>
> PS: By the way David, your caveat is joke I hope? Things haven't gotten to
> the stage that for us to participate in the group we have to sign a way the
> rights to our postings???? If so, I give up on the joke the US calls a legal
> system.

To be honest, I am not sure it is a joke or not. Some of the
information presented in previous threads scared me silly, that I may
cause a chill in TOWiDW by mentioning something that he is already
planning on doing. I couldn't win a lawsuit, but I could make a
nuisance of myself, and take up money, and more importantly, time that
he would be better using to write. Thus, I decided that I'd would take
no choices by making my disclaimer. Could you live with yourself if you
thought you were putting a crimp in the Mad Wizard's style?
Me neither. Just colour me paranoid...
David T. Shaw
(A litigation-free posting)

David T. Shaw

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
to
David G. Bell wrote:
>
> In article <phenix-27111...@roxboro0-035.dyn.interpath.net>
> phe...@interpath.com "John Moreno" writes:
>
> > As for the safety boxes -- I'm not sure what their responsibility in
> > that regards should be.
>
> The Navy would be foolish not to specify test standards for the
> attachment points, and obviously power and life support connections
> would have to meet standards. Basically, the Navy wouldn't want these
> things to break free and go bouncing around the cabin. Bad for the
> treecat, and it would disable the human. It's very likely that the
> people who bond with treecats are special enough for it to be worth the
> Navy subsidising the hardware cost.
>
> --
> David G. Bell -- Farmer, SF Fan, Filker, and Punslinger.

Agreed. But the navy might just set standards, and the bonded human
must ensure that the box meets it. After all, Honor did buy an upgrade
when she had all that prize money, and I can't imagine the navy being
pleased with the idea of standard equipment being replaced with personal
purchases....

David T. Shaw

unread,
Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
to
John Moreno wrote:
>
> In article <365E3F...@icom.ca>, David T. Shaw <dav...@icom.ca> wrote:
>
> > I have been contemplating the treatment that Nimitz received at the
> > hands of Cordellia Ransom (in IEH), and wondering if, strictly in a
> > legal sense, it was justified.
>
> No, but then neither was the treatment of Honor or the intended
> treatment of the rest of her people.
>
Morally, no. But at least for Honor, Ransom gave a legal reason for
her execution. I was wondering if the treatment of Nimitz could be
presented in the same way, as the killing of a dangerous animal. This
wouldn't wash (Or would at least would be harder to get away with) if
'cats were officially sentient members of the crew


> > Assuming a treecat is viewed as nothing more than an
> > intelligent pet (sure, we know better, but I am talking about the
> > Honorverse at large here) then I can see him being taken away and
> > destroyed– especially since he is manifestly dangerous. I don’t
> > really think that much of the civilized worlds would object to
> > strongly to the death of a dangerous pet.
>
> Treecat's have been declared a sentient species by Manticore and a 3rd
> of Sphinx has been reserved for their exclusive use.
>

I am unsure about this. Is the land for the 'cats, or is it just a
preserve? A related question: Would the killer of a 'cat be tried for
murder?

> > So, the question is: “Can the Republic of Haven justifiably
> > treat a treecat as nothing more than a pet?” Obviously, anyone who
> > has been bonded would answer that question in the negative, they know
> > that tree cats are people. But has the Star Kingdom attempted to let
> > the rest of the universe know?
>
> I'm sure it's been published -- just how much attention the rest of the
> universe pays to it is another matter (it's been at least several
> centuries since it would have been announced and beyond their empathic
> ability there isn't any reason for the general public to be interested
> in them).
>

So, did the Star Kingdom send an official protest to the Solarian
League about the murder of one of its citizens (I am speaking about
Nimitz here, not Honor).

> > I doubt it– in fact, I think that the Star Kingdom is somewhat
> > hypocritical about the whole issue. Think about it, Treecats are an
> > exception to the “No pets rule” of the RMN. This, if only obliquely,
> > seems to indicate that many might consider them no more than pets.
>
> They are also exceptions to the "no civilians" of the RMN. However you
> look at it they are allowed aboard warships where others aren't.
>
> > Then there is the much ballyhooed Naval rule that bonded
> > treecats are to be treated as members of the navy– for example, if a
> > female treecat gets pregnant, the bondie gets placed on maternity
> > leave.
>
> They can't be separated (if they could the Navy would just refuse to
> allow them aboard) and leaving them aboard puts the unborn in danger of
> being born deformed. They aren't being treated as members of the Navy,
> they are being treated like pregnant people (keep them away from toxic
> materials).
>
> > However, at the treecats paid to be in the navy? Do they
> > have any sort of official status on a ships Table of Organization?
> > Do they have a rank?
>
> No, no, no. Nor should they be (with the possible exception of
> treecats bonded to marines in which case they might make useful scouts
> in some situations).
>

I know they aren't, but why shouldn't they? Are non-combatant vistors
forced to spend time in life-pods when the ship is at battle stations,
are do they have suits (even if only the civvie models mentioned in
HOE)?

> > And if they are crew members, why don’t they get Single-suits issued
> > to them (correct me if I’m wrong, and I very well might be on this
> > point, but I was under the impression that even the safety boxes that
> > they ride in are bought and installed at the bonded person’s
> > expense).
>
> They don't get skin-suits because until Paul nobody had considered
> making them -- a unfortunate oversight but not inexplicable.
>
> As for the safety boxes -- I'm not sure what their responsibility in
> that regards should be.

I think that the navy should pay for them, actually I think they should
buy single-suits (if Nimitz can wear one, the Navy obviously doesn't
object {assuming they realise that Honor has him on the bridge during
battles...}).


> > Another piece of evidence of treecat’s non-people status is
> > the reaction of the Sphinxian Forestry Service to all those tree cats
> > wishing to accompany Honor to Grayson– they came in to save them from
> > her, rather than to reason with them.
>
> To the best of their knowledge 'Cats are retarded (at least compared to
> humans) and are probably considered unable to make some types of
> decisions. And they do have a communication problem (rather difficult
> to "reason" with someone you can't speak to).

Rather paternalistic, isn't it? Where does the concept of doing it for
their own good stop and violating their rights end? A very important
question. I think in this case, the right decision was made, but on
what basis?


>
> > I am sure there are other incidences– Treecats probably can’t testify
> > in court (I know they can’t speak, but they could identify whether
> > the accused was present at an event or not, they understand
> > people-speak),
>
> Without a better ability to communicate I don't think they would (or
> should) allow them to testify.
>
> > own land, or have representatives at court (I mean official
> > ambassadors, not just the reigning monarch’s bond-mate).
>
> I'm sure they can't sell the land that has been reserved for them --
> I'm not at all convinced that they couldn't otherwise own property. As
> for official ambassador -- that has the same problem as above; no
> langauge.
>
> > With all of this, I imagine that Haven could make a
> > justifiable case that Treecats are mere animals.
>
> I doubt it -- even if all that you imply is true, your treatment of a
> person is not justified by /others/ treatment. Manticore could have a
> "capture, torture and then eat" policy and that would not make it any
> more legal for Haven to mistreat them.

True. But what I was trying to say, if the Star Kingdom, who after all
knows more about Treecats, probably by several orders of magnitude, than
the rest of humanity, treats them as intelligent animals, why should
Haven (or anyone else for that matter) suspect the true facts of the
case?


>
> > What I would like to see is for the navy to treat their cats
> > as crew, give them rank (I suggest “Specialist Special Class” or the
> > like to keep them out of the chain of command, and directly
> > responsible to their bonded-humans), get paid (only a pittance), feed
> > by the navy (including a celery allowance) and fitted with their own
> > skin-suit. This would give them official status, and force any
> > captured to be treated under whatever conventions apply to captured
> > soldiers.
>
> This is a remarkably bad idea in every way (with the exception of the
> skin-suit).
>

As I remark in another thread, I was thinking of a nominal rank only,
just for the purpose of given the 'cats official status within the RMN.

> > Legal changes on the civilian side of the Kingdom I leave as
> > an exercise for the news-group.
>
> Legal changes in the Kingdom will have to await their ability to
> communicate more effectively (and are unlikely to be immediately
> forthcoming even then -- they have a very stable situation and don't
> really have a great need for a change in the way they are treated [for
> example, you mention their testifying in court, it's my opinion that
> would present no difficulty once they have learned sign]).
>

True. And it may be the 'cats are playing possum. However, I'd think
they will eventually come to the conclusion that they finally know
enough about humans, and come out of the closet as it were. And won't
that cause some interesting changes in social dynamics within the
Kingdom?

John Moreno

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
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I would suggest that no one has made a comprehensive effort to teach
them to read because they can't talk to them (and/or for the same
reason no one thought of teaching them sign language -- no one thought
of it).

John Moreno

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
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David G. Bell <db...@zhochaka.demon.co.uk> wrote:

> phe...@interpath.com "John Moreno" writes:
>
> > As for the safety boxes -- I'm not sure what their responsibility in
> > that regards should be.
>

> The Navy would be foolish not to specify test standards for the
> attachment points, and obviously power and life support connections
> would have to meet standards. Basically, the Navy wouldn't want these
> things to break free and go bouncing around the cabin. Bad for the
> treecat, and it would disable the human. It's very likely that the
> people who bond with treecats are special enough for it to be worth the
> Navy subsidising the hardware cost.

That would be logical /after/ the introduction of the 'cat skin-suit,
before that they basically had a box that got stuffed in the closet of
the crewman's cabin.

John Moreno

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
to
David T. Shaw <dav...@icom.ca> wrote:

> John Moreno wrote:
> >
> > David T. Shaw <dav...@icom.ca> wrote:
> >
> > > I have been contemplating the treatment that Nimitz received at the
> > > hands of Cordellia Ransom (in IEH), and wondering if, strictly in a
> > > legal sense, it was justified.
> >
> > No, but then neither was the treatment of Honor or the intended
> > treatment of the rest of her people.
> >
> Morally, no. But at least for Honor, Ransom gave a legal
> reason for her execution. I was wondering if the treatment of Nimitz
> could be presented in the same way, as the killing of a dangerous
> animal. This wouldn't wash (Or would at least would be harder to get
> away with) if 'cats were officially sentient members of the crew

Ransom used a legal pretext to make it a big deal and to keep from
pissing off the Sollies at the same time. Honor's actual fate (or
intended fate at least) wasn't effected in the least.


> > > Assuming a treecat is viewed as nothing more than an
> > > intelligent pet (sure, we know better, but I am talking about the
> > > Honorverse at large here) then I can see him being taken away and
> > > destroyed– especially since he is manifestly dangerous. I don’t
> > > really think that much of the civilized worlds would object to
> > > strongly to the death of a dangerous pet.
> >
> > Treecat's have been declared a sentient species by Manticore and a
> > 3rd of Sphinx has been reserved for their exclusive use.
> >
> I am unsure about this. Is the land for the 'cats, or is it just a
> preserve? A related question: Would the killer of a 'cat be tried
> for murder?

Pretty sure it's reserved for them (similar to the situation with the
stilties).

As for killing a 'cat -- I'd think a murder charge would be in the
offing.



> > > So, the question is: “Can the Republic of Haven
> > > justifiably treat a treecat as nothing more than a pet?”
> > > Obviously, anyone who has been bonded would answer that question
> > > in the negative, they know that tree cats are people. But has
> > > the Star Kingdom attempted to let the rest of the universe know?
> >
> > I'm sure it's been published -- just how much attention the rest of the
> > universe pays to it is another matter (it's been at least several
> > centuries since it would have been announced and beyond their empathic
> > ability there isn't any reason for the general public to be interested
> > in them).
> >
> So, did the Star Kingdom send an official protest to the
> Solarian League about the murder of one of its citizens (I am
> speaking about Nimitz here, not Honor).

Interesting question -- I'm not sure Nimitz *is* a citizen (probably
born in the area reserved for treecat's [possibly not considered Manty
soil]).

As for a protest, I'm not sure (not even sure that they think Nimitz
was killed [fairly certain that they don't know for sure]).

-snip-

> > > However, at the treecats paid to be in the navy? Do they
> > > have any sort of official status on a ships Table of Organization?
> > > Do they have a rank?
> >
> > No, no, no. Nor should they be (with the possible exception of
> > treecats bonded to marines in which case they might make useful scouts
> > in some situations).
> >
> I know they aren't, but why shouldn't they?

Because being a member of the military isn't just marks on paper.

> Are non-combatant vistors forced to spend time in life-pods when the
> ship is at battle stations, are do they have suits (even if only the
> civvie models mentioned in HOE)?

If they didn't have a civie suit that fit then I'd think so (if at all
possible).

Also -- IIRC there's nothing to indicate that being put in the life-pod
was anything other than a decision by Honor and accepted by Nimitz as
the best possible choice available to the (instead of being Navy
policy).

-snip-

> > They don't get skin-suits because until Paul nobody had considered
> > making them -- a unfortunate oversight but not inexplicable.
> >
> > As for the safety boxes -- I'm not sure what their responsibility in
> > that regards should be.
>
> I think that the navy should pay for them, actually I think
> they should buy single-suits (if Nimitz can wear one, the Navy
> obviously doesn't object {assuming they realise that Honor has him on
> the bridge during battles...}).

I'd imagine that they are becoming aware of it.

Still -- I'm not convinced that they should purchase the suits for
them. The 'cat isn't a member of the crew and isn't a Navy
responsibility any more than any other civilian (which probably argues
for the life pod at least).

> > > Another piece of evidence of treecat’s non-people status is
> > > the reaction of the Sphinxian Forestry Service to all those tree cats
> > > wishing to accompany Honor to Grayson– they came in to save them from
> > > her, rather than to reason with them.
> >
> > To the best of their knowledge 'Cats are retarded (at least compared to
> > humans) and are probably considered unable to make some types of
> > decisions. And they do have a communication problem (rather difficult
> > to "reason" with someone you can't speak to).
>
> Rather paternalistic, isn't it? Where does the concept of
> doing it for their own good stop and violating their rights end? A
> very important question. I think in this case, the right decision
> was made, but on what basis?

It appears to have been made on the basis that once the 'cats had
convinced them that they were determined to go, they were allowed to
go.

As for paternalistic - yes. So?

-snip-

> > > With all of this, I imagine that Haven could make a
> > > justifiable case that Treecats are mere animals.
> >
> > I doubt it -- even if all that you imply is true, your treatment of a
> > person is not justified by /others/ treatment. Manticore could have a
> > "capture, torture and then eat" policy and that would not make it any
> > more legal for Haven to mistreat them.
>
> True. But what I was trying to say, if the Star Kingdom, who
> after all knows more about Treecats, probably by several orders of
> magnitude, than the rest of humanity, treats them as intelligent
> animals, why should Haven (or anyone else for that matter) suspect
> the true facts of the case?

Going by the text in _More than Honor_ it seems obvious to me that it
would have been reported to the general scientific community. The fact
that they were a intelligent species would, at the very least, be
available to them. But I can't judge just how well known it would be
in the People's Republic of Haven -- they weren't big on education.


> > > What I would like to see is for the navy to treat their
> > > cats as crew, give them rank (I suggest “Specialist Special
> > > Class” or the like to keep them out of the chain of command, and
> > > directly responsible to their bonded-humans), get paid (only a
> > > pittance), feed by the navy (including a celery allowance) and
> > > fitted with their own skin-suit. This would give them official
> > > status, and force any captured to be treated under whatever
> > > conventions apply to captured soldiers.
> >
> > This is a remarkably bad idea in every way (with the exception of
> > the skin-suit).
> >
> As I remark in another thread, I was thinking of a nominal
> rank only, just for the purpose of given the 'cats official status
> within the RMN.

No. Hell no. I'm sure that crews of the ships involved feel that the
cat in question was a member of *their* crew, but as a general
statement it would be worng.

> > > Legal changes on the civilian side of the Kingdom I leave
> > > as an exercise for the news-group.
> >
> > Legal changes in the Kingdom will have to await their ability to
> > communicate more effectively (and are unlikely to be immediately
> > forthcoming even then -- they have a very stable situation and
> > don't really have a great need for a change in the way they are
> > treated [for example, you mention their testifying in court, it's
> > my opinion that would present no difficulty once they have learned
> > sign]).
> >
> True. And it may be the 'cats are playing possum. However,
> I'd think they will eventually come to the conclusion that they
> finally know enough about humans, and come out of the closet as it
> were. And won't that cause some interesting changes in social
> dynamics within the Kingdom?

I'm not convinced that it would or will. Some subtle and far reaching
effects, yes, but no upheaval.

Dwight E. Howell

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Nov 27, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/27/98
to

"David G. Bell" wrote in message <912202...@zhochaka.demon.co.uk>...
>> As for the safety boxes -- I'm not sure what their responsibility in
>> that regards should be.
>
>The Navy would be foolish not to specify test standards for the
>attachment points, and obviously power and life support connections
>would have to meet standards. Basically, the Navy wouldn't want these
>things to break free and go bouncing around the cabin. Bad for the
>treecat, and it would disable the human. It's very likely that the
>people who bond with treecats are special enough for it to be worth the
>Navy subsidising the hardware cost.
>
>
While I believe your point to be valid I believe that the one of the books
contained the phrase the "queen insisted" and the observation that people
with cats seem to be unusually useful occurred later.

TZMaverick

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Nov 28, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/28/98
to
> Granted. But, my question stands - who purchases the box? I don't
>know, but I do know that Honor upgraded her old box with her prize
>money. I think that indicates that they are purchased by the bonded
>humans, the RMN doesn't seem to be the sort of outfit that skimps on
>equipment...

If I understand what your asking....you box is a life-support module for
treecats....The person who pays for them is the adopted human. Case and
point....In HAE, Harold Tschu wasn't able to afford a tree-cat size skinsuit
for Samantha and he settled for the standard model. Whereas, Honor had brought
Nimitz a deluxe model before Paul designed shimsuits for his 'nibs'. The
deluxe module has antiradiation and extended life support over the standard
module.. Ref: HAE paperback page 496.


TZMaverick

Wombat Woman

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Nov 28, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/28/98
to
john jordan III wrote:
>
> I noted that no one has wondered why the Treecat's have not learned
> to write or at least peck out a message on a keyboard. The ablity to
> learn sign has been disscussed but I don' remember any other non
> telapathic communications mentioned, I might be wrong.

Actually, it was mentioned. The discussion revolved around 'cats
ability to use _any_ non-telepathic and non-vocal form of language and
/or communication. This included signing and keyboarding.


> The cat's have had hand's mentioned several times, also Nimitz has
> learned to use the keypad's that opporate the ship's internal transport
> system, to get around the ships he has been in.
>
> It seems to me that they are more than smart enough to learn to
> read and write. Do they have some racial or cultural block, or are they
> hidding the ablity. I vote they are hidding the ablity as they are so
> much else, they do seem to be keeping their cards close to their vests.
>
> Just my muddled two cents worth.
>

> JJ

If you're interested, check Dejanews for Sept. and Oct. under "Treecats
& Language". The discussion went on for quite a while, with good
arguments all round.

FYI, my final stance was that the treecats' telepathy and empathy
precluded their ability to utilize language as we know, but that they
could use a "proto-language."

Wombat Woman

Buz Ozburn

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Nov 28, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/28/98
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11-27-98

David T. Shaw wrote in message <365F36...@icom.ca>...


>
> As a point of reference, does anyone know if
>members of the K-9 corps have every been
>captured? If so, what happened to the dogs?

Due to the nature of the bond between handler and the dog, generally the
handler is the only human able to get close to the animal; as well as the
selected behavior necessary for the dogs selection in the program, they have
to pass a psyche test before being accepted in the program; and the trained
aggressive behavior the dogs are encouraged to display, to attack anyone
with a weapon besides their handler .... The only way for an enemy to get
their hands on a dog, is for it to be "room temperature" ... Besides, the
dogs are usually among the first targeted ... otherwise the ambush/attackers
position would be revealed by the dog's "alert" on them. A military working
dog is just TOO DANGEROUS a commodity for an enemy to leave around ... who
the heck could they get to handle it in the field? The handler???? Boy
that's like handing a guy, who is supposedly your prisoner, a fully loaded
cocked and locked 45 and letting him walk around with it ... wouldn't be the
brightest move in the world by the capturing force ... would it?

I knew a military working dog (Sparky SN-X827) that was able to alert on
ambushes up to a 1/4 mile away, in ideal conditions (wind, terrain etc) ...
a decided disadvantage to those who are hoping for a surprise ambush against
a unit with a good dog on point. That's one of the reasons the NVA and the
VC had pretty hefty bounties on working military dogs and their handlers in
SE Asia... I heard rumors that it was up around $10,000 (US) at one point.

Buz O.
----------
"Yet that glorious promise had died. Not at the hands of foreign conquerors
or barbarians from the marches, but in its sleep, victim of the best of
motives. It had sacrificed itself upon the altar of equality. Not the
equality of opportunity, but of outcomes. It had looked upon its own wealth
and the inevitable inequalities of any human society and decided to rectify
them, and somehow the lunatics has taken over the asylum. They had
transformed the Republic into the People's Republic - a vast, crazed machine
that promised everyone more and better of everything, regardless of their
own contributions to the system. And in the process, they built a
bureaucratic Titan locked into a headlong voyage to self-destruction and
capable of swallowing reformers like gnats." - David Weber - "Flag In
Exile"

Wombat Woman

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Nov 28, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/28/98
to
David T. Shaw wrote:
>
> I have been contemplating the treatment that Nimitz received at the
> hands of Cordellia Ransom (in IEH), and wondering if, strictly in a
> legal sense, it was justified.
> Assuming a treecat is viewed as nothing more than an intelligent pet
> (sure, we know better, but I am talking about the Honorverse at large
> here) then I can see him being taken away and destroyed– especially
> since he is manifestly dangerous. I don’t really think that much of the
> civilized worlds would object to strongly to the death of a dangerous
> pet.
> So, the question is: “Can the Republic of Haven justifiably treat a
> treecat as nothing more than a pet?” Obviously, anyone who has been
> bonded would answer that question in the negative, they know that tree
> cats are people. But has the Star Kingdom attempted to let the rest of
> the universe know?

---> snip of good posting

Excellent comments! From my readings, now that you've set me to
thinking about it, Manticoran legislation re: treecats' legal status is
unclear. It seems to me that even the Manticorans don't know if
treecats are people.

What do we know about treecat laws? We know they are a protected
sentient species of Sphinx. We know that the RMN has made a few
special-exception rules for bonded human/treecat pairs at the Monarch's
behest (bonded treecats are non-combatants allowed on RMN warships; a
pregnant treecat and her human have the same rights as a pregnant
human).

But none of these deal with defining (legally) treecats as people.
There aren't any laws about treecat emigration/immigration. Are
treecats held legally accountable for their actions, or are their bonded
humans accountable? If the latter, is it because the law perceives
treecats more like pets or more like minors?

Treecats, IMHO, are neither. Comments (especially in the last two HH
novels and in "A Beautiful Friendship") lead me to conceive of treecats
as intelligent, mature people.

They possess, certainly, different mores than humans. For example,
treecats have a communal sense of property, so theft is non-existent in
treeat society. If Manticoran law were to/does define treecats as
people, how would/do they handle the differing social rules?

Given the present war, and the fact that a number of other RMN personnel
besides Dame Honor are part of a bond, it seems to me that it would
behoove the RMN to push for some legal action providing for the ethical
treatment of treecat POW's. After all, we've had at least one bonded
pair (Dame Honor/Nimitz) be captured; it was only thanks to Shannon
Foraker that Nimitz was not killed as a pet. The next bonded pair to be
captured may not be so lucky.

I don't think that treecats should be given a rank, though, unless they
actually were given official combat-related duties.


> David T. Shaw
> P.S. Due to the scary things that I have read about stupid lawsuits, I
> hereby declare that this, and all of my postings, are mere musings upon
> a fictional universe. I renounce all proprietary rights, and cede them
> to TOWiDW to use if he so desires (or more likely that he has already
> thought of them). DTS.

Wombat Woman

David T. Shaw

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Nov 28, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/28/98
to
Dwight E. Howell wrote:
>
> "David G. Bell" wrote in message <912202...@zhochaka.demon.co.uk>...
> >In article <phenix-27111...@roxboro0-035.dyn.interpath.net>
> > phe...@interpath.com "John Moreno" writes:
> >
> >> As for the safety boxes -- I'm not sure what their responsibility in
> >> that regards should be.
> >
> >The Navy would be foolish not to specify test standards for the
> >attachment points, and obviously power and life support connections
> >would have to meet standards. Basically, the Navy wouldn't want these
> >things to break free and go bouncing around the cabin. Bad for the
> >treecat, and it would disable the human. It's very likely that the
> >people who bond with treecats are special enough for it to be worth the
> >Navy subsidising the hardware cost.
> >
> >
> While I believe your point to be valid I believe that the one of the books
> contained the phrase the "queen insisted" and the observation that people
> with cats seem to be unusually useful occurred later.
Yes, but 'cats have been allowed on ships for 150 years (OBS). Even
given the slow speeds of the naval bureaucary, they must have notice the
benefits several decades ago. So did they start paying for the life
boxes? In another thread, good evidence has been presented as a 'no.'

EODRose

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Nov 28, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/28/98
to
Jonh Jordan wrote:

> I noted that no one has wondered why the Treecat's have not learned
>to write or at least peck out a message on a keyboard. The ablity to
>learn sign has been disscussed but I don' remember any other non
>telapathic communications mentioned, I might be wrong.
>

I think that you are assuming a desire on the part of the treecats to
communicate in that way with humans. I don't think that treecats have any such
desire in the first place. First of all the only treecats that would need (or
want) to communicate non-telepathically would be those that adopted humans (a
very small minority). Second those treecats can make their feelings known to
their adopted persons without the use of artificial measures, and I suspect
that because they are empaths that the treecats would tend to disdain inferior
modes of communication (which they no doubt put our forms in that catageory).
The last problem would be one of mechanics. While the treecats are very smart
they are not raised as humans. That will preclude them from learning a lot of
the nuances of human communication and appling them. There is no doubt (in my
mind at least) that treecats understand the context of most of the
communication between humans. At the same time though I doubt that they
understand every word individually. In other words I don't think that you
could get a treecat to understand the necessity of spelling and grammar,
because to a 'cat the meaning is much more important than form (kinda like
here). The way I see it is that treecats won't do things like non-telepathic
communication not because they are incapable, but rather because they don't see
the need to add such complication in their lives.

Jim Rose

Remember no matter where you go there you are.

David T. Shaw

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Nov 28, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/28/98
to
In part John Moreno wrote:
>
> <Snip>

> Ransom used a legal pretext to make it a big deal and to keep from
> pissing off the Sollies at the same time. Honor's actual fate (or
> intended fate at least) wasn't effected in the least.
> Yes, and that is my point. If a treecat is viewed as a ‘pet’ then no one would be surprised at Ransom’s request to “...take that creature outside and destroy it.” In another thread, Buz Ozburn was saying that K-9 dogs were never taken captive, and if I had seen the Grayson tape, I wouldn’t want an animal as dangerous as Nimitz around either.
However, if treecats are official ‘people’ then ordering Nimitz taken
out and destroyed would be the equivalent of shooting Honor because of
her martial art skills. It is a crime of war. My original question
(not express to clearly, I admit) is what the Sollies and the rest of
humanity’s reaction to Nimitz? Do they think that he his a pet or a
person? That fact that Cordellia Ransom (who was not entirely sane, I
admit) felt confident enough to order Nimitz’s execution on tape meant
for broadcast seems to indicate that Nimitz is considered an animal
outside of Manticorean space (excluding Grayson of course).
My point is that the navy has a moral obligation to protect the rights
of any treecats on naval ships, and I gave some suggestions on how they
could do it. Having previously declared sentients made part of the
ship’s company would seem to be the easiest way to do it.
< moresnipage>

> > >
> > So, did the Star Kingdom send an official protest to the
> > Solarian League about the murder of one of its citizens (I am
> > speaking about Nimitz here, not Honor).
>
> Interesting question -- I'm not sure Nimitz *is* a citizen (probably
> born in the area reserved for treecat's [possibly not considered Manty
> soil]).
>
> As for a protest, I'm not sure (not even sure that they think Nimitz
> was killed [fairly certain that they don't know for sure]).
>
Even if Nimitz isn't a citizen, he was still a sentient under the
protection of the RMN, and so the Star Kingdom should have protested his
cavalierly ordered execution.
<even more snippage>

> > Rather paternalistic, isn't it? Where does the concept of
> > doing it for their own good stop and violating their rights end? A
> > very important question. I think in this case, the right decision
> > was made, but on what basis?
>
> It appears to have been made on the basis that once the 'cats had
> convinced them that they were determined to go, they were allowed to
> go.
>
> As for paternalistic - yes. So?

Nothing wrong with paternalism, as long as you are in fact dealing with
children (literally or figuratively).

>
> > As I remark in another thread, I was thinking of a nominal
> > rank only, just for the purpose of given the 'cats official status
> > within the RMN.
>
> No. Hell no. I'm sure that crews of the ships involved feel that the
> cat in question was a member of *their* crew, but as a general
> statement it would be worng.
>

Just to play devil's advocate, you mentioned that there is more to
being in the military than a piece of paper. I think that acceptance
from the crew would be a big part of that. The fact that Nimitz is
directly responsible for the foiling of an assassination attempt of the
head of state of a friendly power certainly seems to qualify him (if no
other treecats) for military service (And by the by, did he get any
formal recognition from Queen Elizabeth for it? If not a military
medal, a civvie equivalent?). I would like to think that if a Canadian
reporter saved the life of the President of the U.S., that Canada would
give the reporter some sort of recognition. If Nimitz didn’t receive an
award, this may indicate a mild discrimination against treecats in the
Kingdom (or that ‘cats just don’t care, which is at least as likely, but
governments don’t always care about the wishes of those they wish to
‘honour’).

<Last bit of Snippage>

Buz Ozburn

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Nov 28, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/28/98
to
11-28-98

David T. Shaw wrote in message <36602D...@icom.ca>...


>In part John Moreno wrote:
>>
>> <Snip>

>> Ransom used a legal pretext to make it a big deal and to keep from
>> pissing off the Sollies at the same time. Honor's actual fate (or
>> intended fate at least) wasn't effected in the least.
>>

>Yes, and that is my point. If a treecat is viewed as a ‘pet’ then
>no one would be surprised at Ransom’s request to “...take that
>creature outside and destroy it.” In another thread, Buz Ozburn
>was saying that K-9 dogs were never taken captive, and if I had
>seen the Grayson tape, I wouldn’t want an animal as dangerous
>as Nimitz around either.
> However, if treecats are official ‘people’ then ordering Nimitz taken
>out and destroyed would be the equivalent of shooting Honor because of
>her martial art skills. It is a crime of war. My original question
>(not express to clearly, I admit) is what the Sollies and the rest of
>humanity’s reaction to Nimitz? Do they think that he his a pet or a
>person? That fact that Cordellia Ransom (who was not entirely sane, I
>admit) felt confident enough to order Nimitz’s execution on tape meant
>for broadcast seems to indicate that Nimitz is considered an animal
>outside of Manticorean space (excluding Grayson of course).
> My point is that the navy has a moral obligation to protect the rights
>of any treecats on naval ships, and I gave some suggestions on how they
>could do it. Having previously declared sentients made part of the
>ship’s company would seem to be the easiest way to do it.
>< moresnipage>
>> > >

>> > So, did the Star Kingdom send an official protest to the
>> > Solarian League about the murder of one of its citizens (I am
>> > speaking about Nimitz here, not Honor).
>>
>> Interesting question -- I'm not sure Nimitz *is* a citizen (probably
>> born in the area reserved for treecat's [possibly not considered Manty
>> soil]).
>>
>> As for a protest, I'm not sure (not even sure that they think Nimitz
>> was killed [fairly certain that they don't know for sure]).
>>

>Even if Nimitz isn't a citizen, he was still a sentient under the
>protection of the RMN, and so the Star Kingdom should have
>protested his cavalierly ordered execution.
><even more snippage>


> and another BIG snip for brevity<

11-18-98

I think what we have here, is a "symbiotic relationship"... at least on the
emotional psyche level.

I seem to remember, from somewhere in one of the books, the relationship
was expressed as being so strong, the human half goes mad when the cat is
killed; and that the cats almost always suicide when the human half croaks
... Samantha being the exception rather than the rule ... but who knows what
would have happened with her, if Nimitz and Honor had not been there to
offer emotional support immediately after Sam's human half of the Symbiote
had been killed ... and she herself had not been pregnant; with the strong
urges emotional responses for procreation, ongoing within her as well.

But the Symbiotic Relationship must have been known about, even outside
Manty space and in Haven. Thus Cordellia would have understood, that by
destroying Nimitz "out of hand", she would have had an emotional basket case
on her hands, with regards to Honor; instead of a "show piece" for a
political propaganda exploitation show trial and execution. After all; what
glory for the Peeps to be seen in an emotionally helpless Honor's execution
(especially if she were little more than a gibbering idiot after Nimitz's
execution)? Much better to be shown destroying an enemy, that appears to be
bigger than life and as fearsome as possible, to boost the morale of the
home folk and show even the biggest baddest Manty is still subject to the
People's retribution and destruction.

And as far as Nimitz's destructive abilities, as shown in the Grayson
incident, surely even a tree cat's fang and claws aren't proof against
battle armor and hypo injections of drugs.

If in fact a "Symbiotic Relationship" is the results of a Human-Cat
adoption-bonding, then Nimitz's citizenship would not be a question to arise
... since he is part of a single individual. He would instantly attain the
same citizenship, rank and position Honor held. They are no longer
individuals, unto themselves, but rather part of the same individual being.

And if the RMN recognized, that a "Symbiotic Relationship" was the results
of a Human-Cat adoption-bond; and that its personnel, who were privileged
enough to be part of such a relationship, were superior to their peers, who
were not part of a symbiote; then it would follow they would not only
provide for the cat half of the symbiote onboard ship ... but would be
trying to encourage the adoption-bonding process as much as possible for as
many of its, the RMN's, people as possible; by parading their people through
the cat's habitat and precincts at virtually any excuse, in hopes of
fostering the desired results of one being produced. Hence the need for the
"Forestry Service" people to protect cat's from out and out decimation in
their natural habitat by the adoption-bonding into a symbiote. Not that it
would do much good ... but who said a military bureaucracy wouldn't try real
hard to force something like it, just because the results were so
outstandingly obvious.

In regards to the environmental "box" and "Cat Skinnies" go ... well in most
instances I would suspect that a Symbiote is probably almost always Officer
material, because of proven mental abilities and emotional stability's ...
and in most military services Officer's are required to provide their own
uniforms, etc.. So a symbiote would be required to purchase such things for
its cat half.

That is not to say that Enlisted Personnel are "dumb or stupid or emotional
unstable"; but DW has almost always shown us bond-adopted symbiotes who are
already officers. Ask yourself why that is?

So I suspect the RMN, in bowing to Royal Commands on the subject of cats and
Navy personnel, was actually brought around into full support of the
objective of the command ... once the results of a few bonded symbiotes were
observed in action aboard ship. What Navy in its right mind would want to
decline the services of obviously superior types within its ranks?

To me the baffling part of this Navy acceptance, is not so much the fact
that the results of the symbiotic bonding is accepted ... it is that all
command and flag type officers aren't selected on the basis of having the
obvious extra benefits accrued by being one who is already part of it? How
in the world can a normal human compete with the "extra umph" a candidate
for promotion to such exalted and important status already in the symbiotic
relationship enjoys?

There would seem to be a reduction in the results of the "Peter Principle's"
effect; if only symbiotic humans were selected for command and flag.

Just ask yourself, if an Adm. Styles type could or should have been promoted
to his position ... in competition with a symbiotic human-cat emotionally
stable individual?

That is something that really puzzles me in the HH universe.

Buz O.
------------

John Moreno

unread,
Nov 28, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/28/98
to
In article <36602D...@icom.ca>, David T. Shaw <dav...@icom.ca>
wrote:

> In part John Moreno wrote:
> >
> > <Snip>


> > Ransom used a legal pretext to make it a big deal and to keep from
> > pissing off the Sollies at the same time. Honor's actual fate (or
> > intended fate at least) wasn't effected in the least.

> Yes, and that is my point. If a treecat is viewed as a ‘pet’
> then no one would be surprised at Ransom’s request to “...take that
> creature outside and destroy it.” In another thread, Buz Ozburn was
> saying that K-9 dogs were never taken captive, and if I had seen the
> Grayson tape, I wouldn’t want an animal as dangerous as Nimitz around
> either. However, if treecats are official ‘people’ then ordering
> Nimitz taken out and destroyed would be the equivalent of shooting
> Honor because of her martial art skills. It is a crime of war. My
> original question (not express to clearly, I admit) is what the
> Sollies and the rest of humanity’s reaction to Nimitz? Do they think
> that he his a pet or a person? That fact that Cordellia Ransom (who
> was not entirely sane, I admit) felt confident enough to order
> Nimitz’s execution on tape meant for broadcast seems to indicate that
> Nimitz is considered an animal outside of Manticorean space
> (excluding Grayson of course).

That is a good question -- but you shouldn't use Ransom or any Peep as
a basis for making the judgement. Their educational system is so shot
to hell, that outside of the Legislaturist people can't be assumed to
be educated outside of their specialties (if any) and even within their
specialties you shouldn't count on it.

I would find it entirely believable that Ransom either didn't know or
thought that most others wouldn't know (or care).

> My point is that the navy has a moral obligation to protect
> the rights of any treecats on naval ships, and I gave some
> suggestions on how they could do it. Having previously declared
> sentients made part of the ship’s company would seem to be the
> easiest way to do it.
> < moresnipage>

Just how much of a moral obligation they have is questionable -- they
aren't member of the ship crews. As for declaring them sentient member
of the crew -- unnecessary against everybody but pirates and the Peeps
and ineffective against them, and it's not a good idea otherwise.

> > > So, did the Star Kingdom send an official protest to the
> > > Solarian League about the murder of one of its citizens (I am
> > > speaking about Nimitz here, not Honor).
> >
> > Interesting question -- I'm not sure Nimitz *is* a citizen (probably
> > born in the area reserved for treecat's [possibly not considered Manty
> > soil]).
> >
> > As for a protest, I'm not sure (not even sure that they think Nimitz
> > was killed [fairly certain that they don't know for sure]).
> >

> Even if Nimitz isn't a citizen, he was still a sentient under the
> protection of the RMN, and so the Star Kingdom should have protested his
> cavalierly ordered execution.
> <even more snippage>

The Star Kingdom doesn't know about it most likely.

> > > Rather paternalistic, isn't it? Where does the concept of
> > > doing it for their own good stop and violating their rights end? A
> > > very important question. I think in this case, the right decision
> > > was made, but on what basis?
> >
> > It appears to have been made on the basis that once the 'cats had
> > convinced them that they were determined to go, they were allowed to
> > go.
> >
> > As for paternalistic - yes. So?
>

> Nothing wrong with paternalism, as long as you are in fact
> dealing with children (literally or figuratively).

It's a bit hard to say for sure -- they are hiding their lights under
the bushes a bit, but they are supposed to be about 80% as intelligent
as the normal human. I'd assume that this means that they have a
average IQ (skipping how useless such a thing is) in present terms of
about 80 or 85. I'm not sure if that's enough to get you declared
legally incompetent, but if it's not it's probably close.


> > > As I remark in another thread, I was thinking of a nominal
> > > rank only, just for the purpose of given the 'cats official status
> > > within the RMN.
> >
> > No. Hell no. I'm sure that crews of the ships involved feel that the
> > cat in question was a member of *their* crew, but as a general
> > statement it would be worng.
> >

> Just to play devil's advocate, you mentioned that there is more to
> being in the military than a piece of paper. I think that acceptance
> from the crew would be a big part of that. The fact that Nimitz is
> directly responsible for the foiling of an assassination attempt of the
> head of state of a friendly power certainly seems to qualify him (if no
> other treecats) for military service

This may qualify him for a medal or something, it doesn't qualify him
for military service. As for the crew -- you're right but it extends
beyond the particular crews to which their humans are attached.
Individual crews have adopted animals and civilians as mascots or
unofficial members of their crew, but they aren't and shouldn't be
treated that way by the rest of the navy.

> (And by the by, did he get any formal recognition from Queen
> Elizabeth for it? If not a military medal, a civvie equivalent?). I
> would like to think that if a Canadian reporter saved the life of the
> President of the U.S., that Canada would give the reporter some sort
> of recognition. If Nimitz didn’t receive an award, this may indicate
> a mild discrimination against treecats in the Kingdom (or that ‘cats
> just don’t care, which is at least as likely, but governments don’t
> always care about the wishes of those they wish to ‘honour’).

An award would be appropriate if the saving took place in Canada
territory, but not if it took place in US territory -- the people that
should be giving Nimitz a medal is the Grayson's (whether they did or
didn't I don't know).

Deloris Booker

unread,
Nov 28, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/28/98
to
Re: several points raised in recent posts :

1. Does killing a cat constituite murder?
Well, know if you define murder as killing a human being under
specific, defined circumstances. But if your laws define killing a
treecat as a crime with specific penalties attached upon conviction, it is
then its own specific catagory of crime - the unlawful killing of a
treecat.

2. Did Manticore protest the killing of Nimitz to the Solarians when
Harrington was "executed"?
From what we are told in the book, people deduced that Nimitz must
be dead on the basis of what they know about a) the usual reaction of
'cats to the death of their partners and b) what they know specifically
about Nimitz and Harrington. But a deduction with no coroborating (sp?)
evidence or testimony would hardly be enough to support an effective
protest. All the Peeps would have to do is claim "What cat? There was no
cat with Harrington when we captured her.".

3. The status of treecats aboard naval vessals.
I think that the most likely status of treecats bonded to naval
personal serving "at sea" as it were, would be "supernumerary
personnel" a useful bureaucrtic catch-all phrase that provides a
legitimate status for people who for reasons of state/personal
pull/mission requirements, whatever, you need or want to have on board a
ship without having to actually swear them in as naval personnel. After
all, the navy can decide to legitimately allow any particular
person/criter they want aboard a vessel as long as the Navy thinks it is
necessary or useful.

Since Nimitz apparently took a long time to absorb the idea of
personal property, its extremely unlikely he would have much use for pay -
what does a cat spend money on anyway? I imagine that they would think it
is much cheaper and easier to find a person of one's own if you really
want a life-time supply of celery on tap.

The impression that I have is that tree-cat/human bonds are still
extremely infrequent when considered as a percentage of the population of
the SKM as a whole. Very few of the people chosen by cats leave Sphinx
(that is Honour's home planet isn't it?), and not many of those serve in
the military. Each case is treated individually because there are too few
to form a statistically significant group. Ramirez remarked in "Field of
Dishonour" that there was a lot of literature on the bond, but much of it
was mutually contradictory or just re-hashes of the same old stuff.
People who are bonded seem frequently too busy with 'real life stuff' to
spend much time navel-gazing the bond-mechanism or conducting tests or
analysis of it.


A question that has occured to me is "how many cats form bonds with
people?" with subsidiary questions like : are all cats capable of forming
bonds? do cats get to pick whom they will bond with or is it a matter of a
fortuitous encounter between the"right" cat and the "right" person (which
would seem to be the case with the Grayson examples)? Several of the
recent Manticorean monarches have been bonded, including her present
Majesty - did the cats deliberately run a bunch of 'candidates" past
each of them on state visits (or private visits for that matter) to Sphinx
in order to do a little match-making?

Just a few thoughts

dbooker


David T. Shaw

unread,
Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
Deloris Booker wrote:
>
> Re: several points raised in recent posts :
>
> 1. Does killing a cat constituite murder?
> Well, know if you define murder as killing a human being under
> specific, defined circumstances. But if your laws define killing a
> treecat as a crime with specific penalties attached upon conviction, it is
> then its own specific catagory of crime - the unlawful killing of a
> treecat.

I was using murder in terms of the killing of a person (person having a
very broad definition, humans being's being only a sub-set). There is a
world of difference of going to jail for shooting a protected animal
from shooting people. How does Mantie law look at it?

>
> 2. Did Manticore protest the killing of Nimitz to the Solarians when
> Harrington was "executed"?
> From what we are told in the book, people deduced that Nimitz must
> be dead on the basis of what they know about a) the usual reaction of
> 'cats to the death of their partners and b) what they know specifically
> about Nimitz and Harrington. But a deduction with no coroborating (sp?)
> evidence or testimony would hardly be enough to support an effective
> protest. All the Peeps would have to do is claim "What cat? There was no
> cat with Harrington when we captured her.".

Actually, Ransom was filming the entire event as a propaganda ploy for
the Sollies and other neutrals (as well as the doles....). I don't
believe that it is ever stated exactly what of that was shown, but at
the very least Nimitz would have to be shown (and probably was shown
killing a guard, giving justification for killing him as a dangerous
animal). I have no trouble believing that the original kill order was
edited out, thus making the entire episode as an unprovoked attack by
Honor and Nimitz, rather than the self-defence it truly was.
Even if the Navy doesn’t know what happened to Nimitz, they should have
demanded of his status (dead, missing or POW) as a sentient that was
aboard a warship. As well, by now they should have sent statements to
both the Sollies and the Peeps (via the Sollies) that ‘cats are
sentient, and deserved to be treated as such...

>
<snippage>
> dbooker

David T. Shaw

unread,
Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
Buz Ozburn wrote:
>
<snipage of everything that was said before>

>
> I think what we have here, is a "symbiotic relationship"... at least on the
> emotional psyche level.
>
> I seem to remember, from somewhere in one of the books, the relationship
> was expressed as being so strong, the human half goes mad when the cat is
> killed; and that the cats almost always suicide when the human half croaks
> ... Samantha being the exception rather than the rule ... but who knows what
> would have happened with her, if Nimitz and Honor had not been there to
> offer emotional support immediately after Sam's human half of the Symbiote
> had been killed ... and she herself had not been pregnant; with the strong
> urges emotional responses for procreation, ongoing within her as well.
>
> But the Symbiotic Relationship must have been known about, even outside
> Manty space and in Haven. Thus Cordellia would have understood, that by
> destroying Nimitz "out of hand", she would have had an emotional basket case
> on her hands, with regards to Honor; instead of a "show piece" for a
> political propaganda exploitation show trial and execution. After all; what
> glory for the Peeps to be seen in an emotionally helpless Honor's execution
> (especially if she were little more than a gibbering idiot after Nimitz's
> execution)? Much better to be shown destroying an enemy, that appears to be
> bigger than life and as fearsome as possible, to boost the morale of the
> home folk and show even the biggest baddest Manty is still subject to the
> People's retribution and destruction.
>
> And as far as Nimitz's destructive abilities, as shown in the Grayson
> incident, surely even a tree cat's fang and claws aren't proof against
> battle armor and hypo injections of drugs.
>
I am not making myself clear. What I am discussing is whether a
neutral observe, solely based on the Star Kingdom's law and custom,
would believe that the members of the Star Kingdom A) believe that the
'cats are sentient, and B) actually treat them as such. I think we can
all agree on "A" being in the affirmative, but my point is that I think
present custom and law treats 'cats as nothing more than highly
intelligent pets.

>
> If in fact a "Symbiotic Relationship" is the results of a Human-Cat
> adoption-bonding, then Nimitz's citizenship would not be a question to arise
> ... since he is part of a single individual. He would instantly attain the
> same citizenship, rank and position Honor held. They are no longer
> individuals, unto themselves, but rather part of the same individual being.

I think you go too far. The 'cat and human are close, probably closer
than any human-human pairing (whether it be mother-child or man and
wife) but they remain individuals. Evidence is that Nimitz continually
finds human protocol a source of amusement.

<Snip>

> In regards to the environmental "box" and "Cat Skinnies" go ... well in most
> instances I would suspect that a Symbiote is probably almost always Officer
> material, because of proven mental abilities and emotional stability's ...
> and in most military services Officer's are required to provide their own
> uniforms, etc.. So a symbiote would be required to purchase such things for
> its cat half.

This maybe true of *dress* uniforms, but surely most armies don't
require their officers to buy their own flak jackets? We are talking
about someting here that is absolutely vital for survival in case of a
hull breech.


>
> That is not to say that Enlisted Personnel are "dumb or stupid or emotional
> unstable"; but DW has almost always shown us bond-adopted symbiotes who are
> already officers. Ask yourself why that is?
>
> So I suspect the RMN, in bowing to Royal Commands on the subject of cats and
> Navy personnel, was actually brought around into full support of the
> objective of the command ... once the results of a few bonded symbiotes were
> observed in action aboard ship. What Navy in its right mind would want to
> decline the services of obviously superior types within its ranks?
>
> To me the baffling part of this Navy acceptance, is not so much the fact
> that the results of the symbiotic bonding is accepted ... it is that all
> command and flag type officers aren't selected on the basis of having the
> obvious extra benefits accrued by being one who is already part of it? How
> in the world can a normal human compete with the "extra umph" a candidate
> for promotion to such exalted and important status already in the symbiotic
> relationship enjoys?
>

I think because the bond doesn't test for a lot of military virtues. A
person with a 'cat maybe emotionally stable, but may have the tactical
skills of a potato, and unable to command effectively. Counter
example: could you imagine the mess the Kingdom would be in if White
Haven was denied promotion because he wasn't bonded? I think the
problem is that bonded pairs are just to rare to make a real difference
in policy decisions....

> There would seem to be a reduction in the results of the "Peter Principle's"
> effect; if only symbiotic humans were selected for command and flag.
>
> Just ask yourself, if an Adm. Styles type could or should have been promoted
> to his position ... in competition with a symbiotic human-cat emotionally
> stable individual?
>
> That is something that really puzzles me in the HH universe.
>
> Buz O.
> ---------

David T. Shaw

unread,
Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
Yes. I was originally wondering (but didn't express it very well) how,
say the Sollie observers, would react.

> I would find it entirely believable that Ransom either didn't know or
> thought that most others wouldn't know (or care).

IMHO, Ransom didn't know (not that she would have cared if she did).

> > My point is that the navy has a moral obligation to protect
> > the rights of any treecats on naval ships, and I gave some
> > suggestions on how they could do it. Having previously declared
> > sentients made part of the ship’s company would seem to be the
> > easiest way to do it.
> > < moresnipage>
>
> Just how much of a moral obligation they have is questionable -- they
> aren't member of the ship crews. As for declaring them sentient member
> of the crew -- unnecessary against everybody but pirates and the Peeps
> and ineffective against them, and it's not a good idea otherwise.

Is it unnecessary? If the RMN was fighting the Sollies, how would they
regard the 'cats? As non-combatant (as much as a 'cat can be a
non-combatant) sentients that have rights, or dangerous pets that can
kill several armed guards before being put out of action? And the navy
accepts that they have a moral responsibility for the 'cats safety,
otherwise bonded pairs would not be eligible for pregnancy leave when a
female 'cat is expecting...



>
> > > > So, did the Star Kingdom send an official protest to the
> > > > Solarian League about the murder of one of its citizens (I am
> > > > speaking about Nimitz here, not Honor).
> > >
> > > Interesting question -- I'm not sure Nimitz *is* a citizen (probably
> > > born in the area reserved for treecat's [possibly not considered Manty
> > > soil]).
> > >
> > > As for a protest, I'm not sure (not even sure that they think Nimitz
> > > was killed [fairly certain that they don't know for sure]).
> > >
> > Even if Nimitz isn't a citizen, he was still a sentient under the
> > protection of the RMN, and so the Star Kingdom should have protested his
> > cavalierly ordered execution.
> > <even more snippage>
>
> The Star Kingdom doesn't know about it most likely.

Excluding the holo that Ransom made, the navy knows where Nimitz was,
and they should have at least demanded information on what happened to
him (Missing, dead or captured).

He can fight, he knows when to fight, and he is accepted by the crew.
Communication is a problem, but I still wouldn't mind having a few 'cats
with a platoon on patrol...

>As for the crew -- you're right but it extends
> beyond the particular crews to which their humans are attached.
> Individual crews have adopted animals and civilians as mascots or
> unofficial members of their crew, but they aren't and shouldn't be
> treated that way by the rest of the navy.

Mascots are non-sentient. Treecats are sentient. In fact, if the crew
treats Nimitz as a 'mascot' that just means that my initial feeling of
discrimination against 'cats in Manticore is correct (for the record, I
doubt the crew regards Nimitz as a mascot. I don't know about other
'cats though...)



>
> > (And by the by, did he get any formal recognition from Queen
> > Elizabeth for it? If not a military medal, a civvie equivalent?). I
> > would like to think that if a Canadian reporter saved the life of the
> > President of the U.S., that Canada would give the reporter some sort
> > of recognition. If Nimitz didn’t receive an award, this may indicate
> > a mild discrimination against treecats in the Kingdom (or that ‘cats
> > just don’t care, which is at least as likely, but governments don’t
> > always care about the wishes of those they wish to ‘honour’).
>
> An award would be appropriate if the saving took place in Canada
> territory, but not if it took place in US territory -- the people that
> should be giving Nimitz a medal is the Grayson's (whether they did or
> didn't I don't know).

Maybe. Maybe even likely, I don't know enough protocol to be sure.
I'm sure that part of the awards that Honor got from the mission was
because of saving the Protector, despite the fact that she did receive a
Grayson award. Why wouldn't the same be true of civvies? The
government wishes to add its thanks sort of thing...

Buz Ozburn

unread,
Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
11-29-98

David T. Shaw wrote in message <3660F6...@icom.ca>...


>Buz Ozburn wrote:
>>
><snipage of everything that was said before>
>>
>> I think what we have here, is a "symbiotic relationship"... at least on
the
>> emotional psyche level.
>>
>> I seem to remember, from somewhere in one of the books, the relationship

>> was expressed as being so strong, the human half goes mad, when the cat
is
>> killed; and that the cats almost always suicide, when the human half
croaks
>> ... Samantha, being the exception rather than the rule, ... but who knows


what
>> would have happened with her, if Nimitz and Honor had not been there to
>> offer emotional support immediately after Sam's human half of the
Symbiote
>> had been killed ... and she herself had not been pregnant; with the
strong

>> urges and emotional responses for procreation, ongoing within her as
well.

>>
>> <Major Snip for brevity>


>>
> I am not making myself clear. What I am discussing is whether a

>neutral observer, solely based on the Star Kingdom's law and custom,


>would believe that the members of the Star Kingdom A) believe that the
>'cats are sentient, and B) actually treat them as such. I think we can
>all agree on "A" being in the affirmative, but my point is that I think
>present custom and law treats 'cats as nothing more than highly
>intelligent pets.
>

I can't speak as a nuetral observer ... I'm a Weber FAN! and a HONOR FAN!!
and a NIMITZ FAN!!! <BWSG>

And I think I'm not communicating my point very well either; they, tree
cats, may be sentient as individuals, and the Star Kingdom might have
protective laws which even recognize that fact ... but once an adoption bond
has happened, then they are part of a symbiotic being, along with their
human half. Remember what the actual definition of a symbiote is according
to Webster's Student: the living together in intimate association of two
dissimilar animals, plants, or an animal and a plant, ordinarily in an
association advantagious, or often necessary, to one or both, as the
relation of an alga and a fungus forming a lichen.

Then recall, as I said before above, "the relationship was expressed as


being so strong, the human half goes mad when the cat is killed; and that

the cats almost always suicide, when the human half croaks." So once the
adoption bond occurs and the symbiotic being is formed ... they can't live
without each other ... that's pretty intimate if you ask me.

And then consider the beneficial results derived for each half of the newly
formed symbiotic being ... added emotional stability for the human half, as
well as feelings of unrestricted love and understanding, a partial ability
that may influence other human and treecat emotions within the symbiotic
halves as well ... such as a fierce feline "killer" instinct to be aroused
on need ... and in Honor's case the ability to sense other human's emotions;
for the tree cat those same feelings of unrestricted love and understanding,
as well as the presentation of a new and interesting enviroment with strange
scenarios, happenings, and characters to observe and be kept amused with,
thereby satisfying its feline curiousity, inquisitivness and adventerous
natures; as well as a steady diet of celery on demand :), and other
delectable tidbits, like toasted rabbit, their human half would feel
oblidged to provide for them.

So I postulate, once the symbiote is formed by the adoption bonding ... each
being, as an individual, ceases to exist as seperate entities, and becomes a
single symbiotic entity. That new being would have to be treated as human,
since half of it is human; and all human ranks, customs and laws would have
to recognize it as such; because by virtue of the symbiotic relationship it
has not become less than human; but rather become more than human.

>>
>> If in fact a "Symbiotic Relationship" is the results of a Human-Cat
>> adoption-bonding, then Nimitz's citizenship would not be a question to
arise
>> ... since he is part of a single individual. He would instantly attain
the
>> same citizenship, rank and position Honor held. They are no longer
>> individuals, unto themselves, but rather part of the same individual
being.
>
> I think you go too far. The 'cat and human are close, probably closer
>than any human-human pairing (whether it be mother-child or man and
>wife) but they remain individuals. Evidence is that Nimitz continually
>finds human protocol a source of amusement.
>

Just because he/she is now half of the new symbiote ... that doesn't mean
he/she has surrendered his abilities to experience his normal tree cat
emotions, memories and intelligence ... rather these must needs be magnified
in that he also empathetically experiences his human half's same emotions,
memories and intelligence from a totally new and somewhat alien point of
view in each of life's situations. As an example using Webster's example;
the alga in a lichen doesn't stop being an alga; and the fungus doesn't stop
being a fungus ... but together they are able to combine their inherent
strengths and better survive in the enviroment as a lichen.

><Snip>
>
>> In regards to the environmental "box" and "Cat Skinnies" go ... well in
most
>> instances I would suspect that a Symbiote is probably almost always
Officer
>> material, because of proven mental abilities and emotional stability's
...
>> and in most military services Officer's are required to provide their own
>> uniforms, etc.. So a symbiote would be required to purchase such things
for
>> its cat half.
>
> This maybe true of *dress* uniforms, but surely most armies don't
>require their officers to buy their own flak jackets? We are talking
>about someting here that is absolutely vital for survival in case of a
>hull breech.

Agreed, but in this case, unlike your analogy of the flak jacket, it must be
the responsibility of the symbiote to procure this necessity for itself
aboard ship. If for no other reason than to protect itself from destruction
should half of the being perish in an accidental hull breach. And as has
been pointed out elsewhere, adoption-bonded (symbiotes) are not that
plentiful off Spinx and in the service; so beyond specified parameters for
dimensions and hardware connections ... I would suspect that the individual
symbiote would have to aquire these devices on their own. Keep in mind
Honor chose to upgrade Nimitz's box with her prize money ... this would
indicate to me that she bought and paid for it to start with... remember her
reminisince about how expense it was to buy in the first place?

>>
>> That is not to say that Enlisted Personnel are "dumb or stupid or

emotionally

I would beg to differ there. I would consider it a high military virtue to
be "emotional stable" in a situation designed to set most normal humans into
a set of the shakes, so bad as to cause disfunctional paralysis. Often the
ability to keep one's head in a crisis and execute a plan is the difference
between doom and survival. (Somebody, in one of these current threads, is
talking about riding the "tic" ... same kind of thing).

I would also consider it a military virtue to be able to have an inseperable
bodyguard, with built in weapons, capable of inflicting massive... if not
fatal injury, to accompany a valueable officer (asset) at all times;
especially into situations where sidearms, and other weapons, might not be
diplomatically acceptable for one reason or another; while being constantly
underestimated by a less than well informed adversary.

I would consider it an invalueable military asset, that the treecat half of
a symbiote, could and would be able to sense and react to potential
assasin's emotional state prior to their being able to attack the officer.

And finally I would consider it an immeasurable military virtue, ableit one
unknown to most of the rest of the inhabitents of the Honorverse, for Honor
to be able to sense the reliability and emotional content of crewmates,
allies and enemies through her link with Nimitz.

Who, but DW himself, is to say that Honor is merely the first ... but
definitly not the last, to start to experience the 2 way link with her
symbiotic other half ... as the relationships continue to adjust to the new
(only a couple of hundred year old) symbiotic beings evolotion within both
individual cultures?

Point to consider, it has already been strongly hinted the tree-cats are
somehow attaching themselves to monarchs and other important leaders in the
Star Kingdom ... could it be they are helping human evolution and
development along, in a path more acceptable to the new symbiotic
relationship's survival ... as well as ultimately their own?

>> There would seem to be a reduction in the results of the "Peter
Principle's"
>> effect; if only symbiotic humans were selected for command and flag.
>>
>> Just ask yourself, if an Adm. Styles type could or should have been
promoted
>> to his position ... in competition with a symbiotic human-cat emotionally
>> stable individual?
>>
>> That is something that really puzzles me in the HH universe.


DITTO on mandating that this is the MAJOR stipulation in any thread I
participate in !!! That this is A litigation-free posting and any and all
contents, ideas, suggestions, hints and innuendoes are constantly and
forever available for use by DW, should he deign to make use of it in any
manner he chooses ... as long as he promises to keep writing the wonderful
books that tell me the stories I need! (I guess I'm forming a symbiotic
relationship with his books :) ... or maybe I'm just addicted ... Oh well, I
happy when I get my grubbies on a new one!)

Sincerely;

Buz O.
-------------

Linda

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
Deloris Booker wrote:
-snip-
> A question that has occured to me is "how many cats form bonds with
> people?" with subsidiary questions like : are all cats capable of forming
> bonds? do cats get to pick whom they will bond with or is it a matter of a
> fortuitous encounter between the"right" cat and the "right" person (which
> would seem to be the case with the Grayson examples)? Several of the
> recent Manticorean monarches have been bonded, including her present
> Majesty - did the cats deliberately run a bunch of 'candidates" past
> each of them on state visits (or private visits for that matter) to Sphinx
> in order to do a little match-making?
>
> Just a few thoughts
>
> dbooker

I have the impression that while the first treecat-monarch bond was
accidental, and the bondings are still fortuitous accidents, that the
treecats encourage these "accidents" by allowing 'cats who are
potentially interested in such a bond to hang around when the future
monarch shows up for a visit.

-Linda

Linda

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
I'm seeing a lot of discussion here over a treecat's legal status and
how the Manticorans _should_ have reacted, but I think you folks are
missing a possible angle of all this: the treecats have worked pretty
hard to hide their intelligence from all but their bonded partners and a
few of those partners' closest, most trusted friends. I don't think
most Manticorans understand just how intelligent the treecats are so how
could anyone outside the starkingdom?

Also, as long as others tend to underestimate the 'cats as nothing more
than "pets", they are _much_ more effective in covert situations or
where surprise is critical. For example: If the assassins on Grayson
had known of Nimitz's capabilities in advance, they might have shot him
to start with rather than going after the humans first. That situation
could well have had a totally different outcome then. This being the
case and given the bonded pairs reluctance to talk about the bonds, it
makes sense NOT to make a big fuss over treecats at this time. A few
captured individuals may suffer for it as Nimitz has, but many more may
be saved or able to help their humans through the ignorance of others.

Just my 2 cents.

-Linda

David T. Shaw

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
Buz Ozburn wrote:
>
> 11-29-98
>
> David T. Shaw wrote in message <3660F6...@icom.ca>...
> >Buz Ozburn wrote:
> >>
> ><snipage of everything that was said before>
> >>
> >> I think what we have here, is a "symbiotic relationship"... at least on
> the
> >> emotional psyche level.
> >>
> >> I seem to remember, from somewhere in one of the books, the relationship
> >> was expressed as being so strong, the human half goes mad, when the cat is
> >> killed; and that the cats almost always suicide, when the human half croaks
> >> ... Samantha, being the exception rather than the rule, ... but who knows what
> >> would have happened with her, if Nimitz and Honor had not been there to
> >> offer emotional support immediately after Sam's human half of the Symbiote
> >> had been killed ... and she herself had not been pregnant; with the strong
> >> urges and emotional responses for procreation, ongoing within her as well.
>
I am not sure of this. I think I also remember reading that a 'cat
dies shortly after the bonded human dies, but that I have assumed the
human is affected to a lesser extent. Somewhat in a manner similar to a
great loss: for example having your parents, spouse and children all
die in the same accident. Severe depression yes, but recoverable, and
not madness.

> >>
> >> <Major Snip for brevity>
> >>
> > I am not making myself clear. What I am discussing is whether a
> >neutral observer, solely based on the Star Kingdom's law and custom,
> >would believe that the members of the Star Kingdom A) believe that the
> >'cats are sentient, and B) actually treat them as such. I think we can
> >all agree on "A" being in the affirmative, but my point is that I think
> >present custom and law treats 'cats as nothing more than highly
> >intelligent pets.
> >
>
> I can't speak as a nuetral observer ... I'm a Weber FAN! and a HONOR FAN!!
> and a NIMITZ FAN!!! <BWSG>

Well, yes, of course. Just to make myself clear, I was thinking of
Andies or Sollies. I fully realise that no reader of the works of the
MWW can be neutral when we are talking about Nimitz ;)

>
> And I think I'm not communicating my point very well either; they, tree
> cats, may be sentient as individuals, and the Star Kingdom might have
> protective laws which even recognize that fact ... but once an adoption bond
> has happened, then they are part of a symbiotic being, along with their
> human half. Remember what the actual definition of a symbiote is according
> to Webster's Student: the living together in intimate association of two
> dissimilar animals, plants, or an animal and a plant, ordinarily in an
> association advantagious, or often necessary, to one or both, as the
> relation of an alga and a fungus forming a lichen.

"Webster's Student?" Just so I am clear, you are talking about the
dictionary, right?


>
> Then recall, as I said before above, "the relationship was expressed as
> being so strong, the human half goes mad when the cat is killed; and that
> the cats almost always suicide, when the human half croaks." So once the
> adoption bond occurs and the symbiotic being is formed ... they can't live
> without each other ... that's pretty intimate if you ask me.
>

I don't consider the relationship anymore symbiotic than a really
excellent marriage: both partners still have their own lives, but enjoy
each other's company greatly, don't like being separated for long
periods of time, and both learn and grow from their relationship with
the other.

> And then consider the beneficial results derived for each half of the newly
> formed symbiotic being ... added emotional stability for the human half, as
> well as feelings of unrestricted love and understanding, a partial ability
> that may influence other human and treecat emotions within the symbiotic
> halves as well ... such as a fierce feline "killer" instinct to be aroused
> on need ... and in Honor's case the ability to sense other human's emotions;
> for the tree cat those same feelings of unrestricted love and understanding,
> as well as the presentation of a new and interesting enviroment with strange
> scenarios, happenings, and characters to observe and be kept amused with,
> thereby satisfying its feline curiousity, inquisitivness and adventerous
> natures; as well as a steady diet of celery on demand :), and other
> delectable tidbits, like toasted rabbit, their human half would feel
> oblidged to provide for them.
>
> So I postulate, once the symbiote is formed by the adoption bonding ... each
> being, as an individual, ceases to exist as seperate entities, and becomes a
> single symbiotic entity. That new being would have to be treated as human,
> since half of it is human; and all human ranks, customs and laws would have
> to recognize it as such; because by virtue of the symbiotic relationship it
> has not become less than human; but rather become more than human.

This is where you and I disagree most, I suspect. I would no more
treat Nimitz as a captain than I would a Captain's offspring or spouse.
And it also diminishes the concept of the 'cat as a person. If the only
reason why I tree a 'cat as a person is because it is bonded to a
person, and thus becomes some sort of annex, I am saying that I don't
really believe that 'cats, in and of themselves, are people. Honor
thinks as Nimitz as a person, although she is highly biased. More
importantly, Mike (who probably knows Nimitz better than anyone with the
exception of Honor and her immediate family) thinks of him as a person
as well. I don't think that Honor is more than human – I think of her
as an exceptionally lucky human because she has (and knows she has) the
unconditional love of a being whom she herself loves and respects as
well.
I also think that the reason why people bonded with ‘cats are
exceptional is not because they are bonded, but rather that the ‘cats
bond with them largely due to the person’s character, that is, the
person was exceptional before the bond. The bond no doubts helps with
further development, because if you are in a stable relationship, you
are probably more confident about yourself (a success breeds success
situation).

Yes, I do think that the human's by the boxes for their 'cats (although
I will accept any evidence to the contrary, I just think, I don't
know). However, I don't understand why. The navy already shows that it
is worried enough about the ‘cats safety that they will grant their
humans pregnancy leave, but not enough to provide basic protection in a
combat situation? Even ignoring the moral issue, what about the
practical issue. Would you, as the admiralty, want some of your most
effective officers at risk of mental paralysis because their ‘cats die
from a hit in another part of the ship? Granted, the rest is three even
with the boxes, but it is reduced substantially.

I agree, that all of these are benefits. However, only the emotional
stability is a requirement for a good officer, the rest are nothing more
than fringe benefits of the bond. However, there are many more miitary
virtues (such as tactical ability for example) that aren't tested for by
the bond. Again, I cite White Haven, one of the best admirals in
history, and he isn't bonded.


>
> Who, but DW himself, is to say that Honor is merely the first ... but
> definitly not the last, to start to experience the 2 way link with her
> symbiotic other half ... as the relationships continue to adjust to the new
> (only a couple of hundred year old) symbiotic beings evolotion within both
> individual cultures?

Oh, I believe that Honor is merely the first. The MWW hinted in IEH
that Honor suspected that the Grayson bonds were actually stronger in
terms of two-way communication simply because the Graysons didn't have
any preconceived notions.



> Point to consider, it has already been strongly hinted the tree-cats are
> somehow attaching themselves to monarchs and other important leaders in the
> Star Kingdom ... could it be they are helping human evolution and
> development along, in a path more acceptable to the new symbiotic
> relationship's survival ... as well as ultimately their own?
>

I believe that main reason for these bonds is that the ‘cats just want
observers where the power is. There might be some social evolution
going on since the monarchs are a bit more stable, but I think it is
just a side effect, not the treecats’ intention.

> >> There would seem to be a reduction in the results of the "Peter Principle's"
> >> effect; if only symbiotic humans were selected for command and flag.
> >> Just ask yourself, if an Adm. Styles type could or should have been promoted
> >> to his position ... in competition with a symbiotic human-cat emotionally
> >> stable individual?
> >>
> >> That is something that really puzzles me in the HH universe.

<small snipage>

David T. Shaw

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
Just a vain attempt to wrench part of the thread back to the points
that I originally wanted to make (this should teach me not to post at
two in the morning,...)
I think that treecats are people (albeit very different people) and
should have the same rights as such. When Ransom ordered the death of
Nimitz (assuming it was broadcast, can we just assume it was for the
sake of this thread {or start a new thread speculating on exactly how
Ransom messed with the tapes she made to give it maximum propaganda
value at home and abroad}), the reaction of the Star Kingdom should have
been the same as if she summarily ordered a crew member shot (or if they
are feeling paternalistic, as if she ordered the death of a bright five
year old, a five year old that always goes about armed and is therefore
dangerous, but a cute, bright and loving person).
The MWW doesn't go into detail about the RMN or the governments
reaction to Nimitz's fate. I think that should have been one, at the
very least, an inquiry to the PEEPs and a protest to the Sollies (who
are the war's enforcers of the rules of war).
This raises the question: what does the navy do to safeguard the lives
and rights of bonded 'cats on their ships? I think that they have some
responsibility, and the RMN agrees to some extent or else they wouldn't
have their pregnancy leave policy (Of course, that maybe just the RMN
just bowing to the wishes of their sovereign). As a real world analogy,
if the USN or RN allows a news crew to do a story in on a ship that may
go into combat, wouldn't they at least offer them flak jackets? And if
the ship was sank, would they not inquire what happened to them?
I then suggested a means for the RMN to ensure that the 'cats rights
were respected, and that was to make them officially part of the ships
company and thus subject to the rules of war. This was pretty much
rejected as 'a bad idea.' (I, of course, being completely impartial
still see its merits ;)
My musings then had me speculate on how 'cats, by law and custom, where
treated within the Kingdom itself. I suspect that they are more
considered as really intelligent pets by the general populace (and maybe
even the government) rather than the sentients that they are. Part of
this is due to the fact that the 'cats are hiding their light under a
bushel, but I also suspect that it is because they are cute and cuddly
(something akin to 'dumb blondes' - if you have a stereotypical standard
of beauty, you have to work harder to convince some people that there is
a brain that goes with the body {which raises the question of humour.
Does the Star Kingdom have treecat jokes? "How many 'treecats does it
take to screw in a light bulb?" "One, but they don't bother, they can
see in the dark.").
So, to summarize, the things that I wished to start discussion were:
1. What status do 'cats have within the Star Kingdom, and the navy. Is
it 'fair'?
2. Does the navy do everything they can to protect 'cats in their ships,
and if not, why? And what else can they (or should) they do?
Some of this has been discussed in other threads, but most was debate
about some of my suggestions, and the underlying stuff was lost in the
scuffle.

David T. Shaw
(A litigation-free posting)
“The ideal officer must be afraid of nothing - not even of a new idea.”
Field-Marshal Earl Wavell

David T. Shaw

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
Linda wrote:
>
> I'm seeing a lot of discussion here over a treecat's legal status and
> how the Manticorans _should_ have reacted, but I think you folks are
> missing a possible angle of all this: the treecats have worked pretty
> hard to hide their intelligence from all but their bonded partners and a
> few of those partners' closest, most trusted friends. I don't think
> most Manticorans understand just how intelligent the treecats are so how
> could anyone outside the starkingdom?
>
Yes, but the vast majority of monarchs have been bonded, why haven't
they been pushing for the government to implement reforms? They are
hardly powerless figure-heads. Seems like something to push when the
Progressives were in power (except of course, they probably don't hold
onto their high ideals when it affects themselves {cynical citizen
carping).

> Also, as long as others tend to underestimate the 'cats as nothing more
> than "pets", they are _much_ more effective in covert situations or
> where surprise is critical. For example: If the assassins on Grayson
> had known of Nimitz's capabilities in advance, they might have shot him
> to start with rather than going after the humans first. That situation
> could well have had a totally different outcome then. This being the
> case and given the bonded pairs reluctance to talk about the bonds, it
> makes sense NOT to make a big fuss over treecats at this time. A few
> captured individuals may suffer for it as Nimitz has, but many more may
> be saved or able to help their humans through the ignorance of others.

I don't think that anyone really viewed 'cats as covert
ace-in-the-holes. If they did, the Grayson episode pretty much
destroyed that, no one with a half-decent intelligence network is ever
going to underestimate treecat abilities again.
As to the outcome to the attack, I think that the only way to take out
a treecat is to approach it with weapons drawn. And they have
phenomenal react times, even that probably wouldn't be enough (look at
the havoc Nimitz did when he was a prisoner, and some of the guards were
warned of what might go down....) As well, if a group of men rushed
into the room with weapons drawn, the guards already there probably
would have been more effective, they didn't know anything was going on
until Nimitz attacked, and even then didn't know what was going on until
Fox was shot.

> Just my 2 cents.
>
> -Linda

David T. Shaw
(A litigation-free posting)

David G. Bell

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
In article <36617F...@wireweb.net> antip...@wireweb.net "Linda" writes:

> I'm seeing a lot of discussion here over a treecat's legal status and
> how the Manticorans _should_ have reacted, but I think you folks are
> missing a possible angle of all this: the treecats have worked pretty
> hard to hide their intelligence from all but their bonded partners and a
> few of those partners' closest, most trusted friends. I don't think
> most Manticorans understand just how intelligent the treecats are so how
> could anyone outside the starkingdom?
>

> Also, as long as others tend to underestimate the 'cats as nothing more
> than "pets", they are _much_ more effective in covert situations or
> where surprise is critical. For example: If the assassins on Grayson
> had known of Nimitz's capabilities in advance, they might have shot him
> to start with rather than going after the humans first. That situation
> could well have had a totally different outcome then. This being the
> case and given the bonded pairs reluctance to talk about the bonds, it
> makes sense NOT to make a big fuss over treecats at this time. A few
> captured individuals may suffer for it as Nimitz has, but many more may
> be saved or able to help their humans through the ignorance of others.

Obviously, the bond is an intense psychological dependence, leading to
severe mental harm to the human if the treecat is injured or killed. It
is thus arguable that deliberately harming a bonded 'cat is a form of
torture, and would be a breach of the laws of war.


That argument doesn't depend on the sentience of the 'cats.

David T. Shaw

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
David G. Bell wrote:

<much snippage>


>
> Obviously, the bond is an intense psychological dependence, leading to
> severe mental harm to the human if the treecat is injured or killed. It
> is thus arguable that deliberately harming a bonded 'cat is a form of
> torture, and would be a breach of the laws of war.
>
> That argument doesn't depend on the sentience of the 'cats.

I like it. I don't know if other powers would agree with it, but I
like it.

Dwight E. Howell

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to

EODRose wrote in message <19981128112851...@ng26.aol.com>...

Your argument is well reasoned and cognate as for as those creatures which
remain in the reserves are concerned. It appears, however, that some
populations are now moving out into places were direct human contact almost
from the moment of birth is constant.

Under these circumstances better communication with humans and the mastery
of more than the rudiments of human tech are vital. Don't be overly
surprised if they start working for money. Join the military or security
forces. Or start using some human weapons or other equipment. They have and
use tech of their own and as soon as looking stupid is no longer useful in
hiding from attention they are likely to stop doing it.

P. S. If DW should happen someday to use an idea that in some way resembles
something I said I well be flattered rather than want to sue. He or anybody
else please feel free!

John Moreno

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
to
In article <3660FA...@icom.ca>, David T. Shaw <dav...@icom.ca>
wrote:

> John Moreno wrote:
> >
> > In article <36602D...@icom.ca>, David T. Shaw <dav...@icom.ca>
> > wrote:
> >
> > > In part John Moreno wrote:
> > > >

-snip-


> Yes. I was originally wondering (but didn't express it very
> well) how, say the Sollie observers, would react.

Depending upon how it was reported and how well they remembered their
grade school classes -- either murder or the killing of a dangerous
animal. I'd think that the other intelligent species would be covered
at some point, but in what depth I don't know.



> > I would find it entirely believable that Ransom either didn't know or
> > thought that most others wouldn't know (or care).
>
> IMHO, Ransom didn't know (not that she would have cared if she did).

She might have cared how it'd effect the propaganda -- not that that
would have stopped her (it'd have just kept it from being broadcast).



> > > My point is that the navy has a moral obligation to protect
> > > the rights of any treecats on naval ships, and I gave some
> > > suggestions on how they could do it. Having previously declared
> > > sentients made part of the ship’s company would seem to be the
> > > easiest way to do it.
> > > < moresnipage>
> >
> > Just how much of a moral obligation they have is questionable -- they
> > aren't member of the ship crews. As for declaring them sentient member
> > of the crew -- unnecessary against everybody but pirates and the Peeps
> > and ineffective against them, and it's not a good idea otherwise.
>
> Is it unnecessary? If the RMN was fighting the Sollies, how
> would they regard the 'cats? As non-combatant (as much as a 'cat can
> be a non-combatant) sentients that have rights, or dangerous pets
> that can kill several armed guards before being put out of action?

As sentient combatants (they may be worthless aboard ship, but in a
prison situation they would be very dangerous).

> And the navy accepts that they have a moral responsibility for the
> 'cats safety, otherwise bonded pairs would not be eligible for
> pregnancy leave when a female 'cat is expecting...

Not sure that is the parent or the unborn being protected.

-snip-

> > The Star Kingdom doesn't know about it most likely.
>
> Excluding the holo that Ransom made, the navy knows where
> Nimitz was, and they should have at least demanded information on
> what happened to him (Missing, dead or captured).

They probably made some enquiry but what is unknown (and only probably
- it's entirely possibly that he was simply overlooked by the Manties).

-snip-



> > This may qualify him for a medal or something, it doesn't qualify him
> > for military service.
>
> He can fight, he knows when to fight, and he is accepted by
> the crew. Communication is a problem, but I still wouldn't mind
> having a few 'cats with a platoon on patrol...

Hand to hand ability does not qualify one for military service.



> > As for the crew -- you're right but it extends beyond the
> > particular crews to which their humans are attached. Individual
> > crews have adopted animals and civilians as mascots or unofficial
> > members of their crew, but they aren't and shouldn't be treated
> > that way by the rest of the navy.
>
> Mascots are non-sentient. Treecats are sentient. In fact,
> if the crew treats Nimitz as a 'mascot' that just means that my
> initial feeling of discrimination against 'cats in Manticore is
> correct (for the record, I doubt the crew regards Nimitz as a mascot.
> I don't know about other 'cats though...)

1) Mascots don't have to be non-sentient.
2) You ignored the bit about civilans
3) Just because the crew considers someone a member of the crew doesn't
mean that the rest of the military does likewise.



> > > (And by the by, did he get any formal recognition from Queen
> > > Elizabeth for it? If not a military medal, a civvie
> > > equivalent?). I would like to think that if a Canadian reporter
> > > saved the life of the President of the U.S., that Canada would
> > > give the reporter some sort of recognition. If Nimitz didn’t
> > > receive an award, this may indicate a mild discrimination against
> > > treecats in the Kingdom (or that ‘cats just don’t care, which is
> > > at least as likely, but governments don’t always care about the
> > > wishes of those they wish to ‘honour’).
> >
> > An award would be appropriate if the saving took place in Canada
> > territory, but not if it took place in US territory -- the people that
> > should be giving Nimitz a medal is the Grayson's (whether they did or
> > didn't I don't know).
>
> Maybe. Maybe even likely, I don't know enough protocol to be
> sure. I'm sure that part of the awards that Honor got from the
> mission was because of saving the Protector, despite the fact that
> she did receive a Grayson award. Why wouldn't the same be true of
> civvies? The government wishes to add its thanks sort of thing...

She get's an award for doing her duty or going beyond her duty --
civvies don't have duties. Giving them medals is almost always
politically motivated.

Dwight E. Howell

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
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David T. Shaw wrote in message <36602D...@icom.ca>...

>In part John Moreno wrote:
>>
>> <Snip>

>> Ransom used a legal pretext to make it a big deal and to keep from
>> pissing off the Sollies at the same time. Honor's actual fate (or
>> intended fate at least) wasn't effected in the least.
>> Yes, and that is my point. If a treecat is viewed as a ‘pet’ then no one
would be surprised at Ransom’s request to “...take that creature outside and
destroy it.” In another thread, Buz Ozburn was saying that K-9 dogs were
never taken captive, and if I had seen the Grayson tape, I wouldn’t want an
animal as dangerous as Nimitz around either.
> However, if treecats are official ‘people’ then ordering Nimitz taken
>out and destroyed would be the equivalent of shooting Honor because of
>her martial art skills. It is a crime of war. My original question
>(not express to clearly, I admit) is what the Sollies and the rest of
>humanity’s reaction to Nimitz? Do they think that he his a pet or a
>person? That fact that Cordellia Ransom (who was not entirely sane, I
>admit) felt confident enough to order Nimitz’s execution on tape meant
>for broadcast seems to indicate that Nimitz is considered an animal
>outside of Manticorean space (excluding Grayson of course).


The plot seemed to imply that she was unaware that Nimitz kind had been
declared sentient.

The questions as to what the rest of the galaxy would have made of her
actions is most likely not much but not good.

> My point is that the navy has a moral obligation to protect the rights
>of any treecats on naval ships, and I gave some suggestions on how they
>could do it. Having previously declared sentients made part of the
>ship’s company would seem to be the easiest way to do it.
>< moresnipage>
>> > >

>> > So, did the Star Kingdom send an official protest to the
>> > Solarian League about the murder of one of its citizens (I am
>> > speaking about Nimitz here, not Honor).
>>
>> Interesting question -- I'm not sure Nimitz *is* a citizen (probably
>> born in the area reserved for treecat's [possibly not considered Manty
>> soil]).
>>
>> As for a protest, I'm not sure (not even sure that they think Nimitz
>> was killed [fairly certain that they don't know for sure]).


Lodging a protest with a government you are in a shooting war with is barely
worth doing at the best of times.

>>
>Even if Nimitz isn't a citizen, he was still a sentient under the
>protection of the RMN, and so the Star Kingdom should have protested his
>cavalierly ordered execution.
><even more snippage>

>> > Rather paternalistic, isn't it? Where does the concept of
>> > doing it for their own good stop and violating their rights end? A
>> > very important question. I think in this case, the right decision
>> > was made, but on what basis?
>>
>> It appears to have been made on the basis that once the 'cats had
>> convinced them that they were determined to go, they were allowed to
>> go.
>>
>> As for paternalistic - yes. So?
>

> Nothing wrong with paternalism, as long as you are in fact dealing with
>children (literally or figuratively).


I seem to recall a statement that treecat I. Q. may have averaged around 80.
I've taught lower and that dosen't explain what abilities may have been
lower and what were higher than the human norm.


>
>>
>> > As I remark in another thread, I was thinking of a nominal
>> > rank only, just for the purpose of given the 'cats official status
>> > within the RMN.
>>

Even when it gets to the point of kill everybody in uniform it still is a
few steps short of kill civilians on purpose so you proptection is counter
indicated to me.

Or to put it another way military types are less likely to kill captured
civilians than the folks that were trying to kill them.

>> No. Hell no. I'm sure that crews of the ships involved feel that the
>> cat in question was a member of *their* crew, but as a general
>> statement it would be worng.
>>

> Just to play devil's advocate, you mentioned that there is more to
>being in the military than a piece of paper. I think that acceptance
>from the crew would be a big part of that. The fact that Nimitz is
>directly responsible for the foiling of an assassination attempt of the
>head of state of a friendly power certainly seems to qualify him (if no

>other treecats) for military service (And by the by, did he get any


>formal recognition from Queen Elizabeth for it? If not a military
>medal, a civvie equivalent?). I would like to think that if a Canadian
>reporter saved the life of the President of the U.S., that Canada would
>give the reporter some sort of recognition. If Nimitz didn’t receive an
>award, this may indicate a mild discrimination against treecats in the
>Kingdom (or that ‘cats just don’t care, which is at least as likely, but
>governments don’t always care about the wishes of those they wish to
>‘honour’).


You seem to be forgetting that tree cats were not advertising their
abilities and 'encouraging' their humans to do likewise besides other than
giving him something he could eat or wear how would you honor him in a way
that is meaningful to him. He is an upper Paleolithic being.

Buz Ozburn

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
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David T. Shaw wrote in message <366175...@icom.ca>...

>Just a vain attempt to wrench part of the thread back to the points
>that I originally wanted to make (this should teach me not to post at
>two in the morning,...)

> <Big Snip>


>David T. Shaw
>(A litigation-free posting)

>“The ideal officer must be afraid of nothing - not even of a new idea.”
>Field-Marshal Earl Wavell

Sorry, I'll shut up now.

Buz O.

Countenance-Free-Carey

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
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John Moreno wrote in message ...

>> And the navy accepts that they have a moral responsibility for the
>> 'cats safety, otherwise bonded pairs would not be eligible for
>> pregnancy leave when a female 'cat is expecting...

>Not sure that is the parent or the unborn being protected.

Perhaps it's the Navy protecting its ships and crews from possible
blunders that might be committed by a human while distracted by
whatever might come across the link during labor and kittenbirth. I
don't think I've ever heard a woman who experienced natural childbirth
claim it was a comfortable, let alone pleasant, experience. Nimitz
gets irritated when Honor chastises herself. Honor felt some of
Nimitz' pain when he was wounded. It seems likely that some of the
pain felt by the treecat during the birth process would leek over to
the bonded human through the link. I realize that females don't come
with a caveat attached that says "Warning: Do not operate heavy or
complex equipment during childbirth.", but some things are just taken
for granted... ;-)
--
Countenance-Free-Carey

Countenance-Free-Carey

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
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David T. Shaw wrote in message <366175...@icom.ca>...

>Does the Star Kingdom have treecat jokes? "How many 'treecats does
it
>take to screw in a light bulb?" "One, but they don't bother, they
can
>see in the dark.").

I rather doubt there are any treecat jokes told within hearing
distance of any treecats, and they have pretty good hearing don't
they? ;-)
--
Countenance-Free-Carey

Mike Bruner

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Nov 29, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/29/98
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David T. Shaw wrote:

> Deloris Booker wrote:
> >
> > Re: several points raised in recent posts :
> >
> > 1. Does killing a cat constituite murder?
> > Well, know if you define murder as killing a human being under
> > specific, defined circumstances. But if your laws define killing a
> > treecat as a crime with specific penalties attached upon conviction, it is
> > then its own specific catagory of crime - the unlawful killing of a
> > treecat.
>
> I was using murder in terms of the killing of a person (person having a
> very broad definition, humans being's being only a sub-set). There is a
> world of difference of going to jail for shooting a protected animal
> from shooting people. How does Mantie law look at it?

I think it's been stated directly (although I can't remember exact book or page)
that under Manticorian law treecats are defined as sentients, which undoubtably
means killing one in Manticorian space is considered murder. I would assume this
fact is for some reason disputed in other nations (or possibly just in Haven
considering we don't actually know what other nations have to say, and Haven
according to several of the lines in OBS never really considered itself bound by a
lot of international "laws" of shipping at least so not holding with this ruling
wouldn't exactly violate anything we've come to expect from them).


> > 2. Did Manticore protest the killing of Nimitz to the Solarians when
> > Harrington was "executed"?
> > From what we are told in the book, people deduced that Nimitz must
> > be dead on the basis of what they know about a) the usual reaction of
> > 'cats to the death of their partners and b) what they know specifically
> > about Nimitz and Harrington. But a deduction with no coroborating (sp?)
> > evidence or testimony would hardly be enough to support an effective
> > protest. All the Peeps would have to do is claim "What cat? There was no
> > cat with Harrington when we captured her.".
> Actually, Ransom was filming the entire event as a propaganda ploy for
> the Sollies and other neutrals (as well as the doles....). I don't
> believe that it is ever stated exactly what of that was shown, but at
> the very least Nimitz would have to be shown (and probably was shown
> killing a guard, giving justification for killing him as a dangerous
> animal). I have no trouble believing that the original kill order was
> edited out, thus making the entire episode as an unprovoked attack by
> Honor and Nimitz, rather than the self-defence it truly was.
> Even if the Navy doesn’t know what happened to Nimitz, they should have
> demanded of his status (dead, missing or POW) as a sentient that was
> aboard a warship. As well, by now they should have sent statements to
> both the Sollies and the Peeps (via the Sollies) that ‘cats are
> sentient, and deserved to be treated as such...

The question remains, though; how on earth can they get such a statement respected?
About the only thing I can think of that *might* work is prosecuting any Peeps that
kill cats as war criminals if they're caught, and that requires that the Peeps in
question are taken prisoner (and even then people like the Solies might scream and
point fingers, although I can see Manticore possibly coming out ahead of the
resulting PR war (killing cute cuddly fuzzy things isn't something that's easy to
argue for doing, and it's possible some very few individuals outside Manticore and
Grayson have cats (if the cats grasp the difference between nations, that sort of
thing would be something that, like adopting the monarchs of Manticore, they'd want
to encourage))).

--
Mike Bruner...@delaware.infi.net

"But soft, what light through yonder window breaks? It is the East, and
Juliet is AAAAAHHHHH THE SUN!!!!!!!!! *FOOM*
-- Vampire theatre


SwordOath1

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Nov 30, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/30/98
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In article <912349...@zhochaka.demon.co.uk>, db...@zhochaka.demon.co.uk

("David G. Bell") writes:

>
>Obviously, the bond is an intense psychological dependence, leading to
>severe mental harm to the human if the treecat is injured or killed. It
>is thus arguable that deliberately harming a bonded 'cat is a form of
>torture, and would be a breach of the laws of war.
>
>
>That argument doesn't depend on the sentience of the 'cats.
>

True. And it would also be a downside to favoring bonded promotion candidates
over unbonded ones. I can hear the promotion board hearing now:

"Well, yes, he does have a 'cat, and that should make him more stable under
most conditions of duress. But we're talking about a military officer here.
Candidate B, who has no 'cat, may have a lower overall emotional stability, but
in Candidate A's case, a hit or accident which had no effect at all directly on
him--even one in a totally different part of the ship--could completely
incapacitate him, in the captain's chair, at the very height of a battle for
survival against enemy forces."

Bit of a two-edged sword there, I think.

--
Chris Maurer
"It is a fundamental law of defense that you always have to use the most
powerful weapon that you can produce."--Maj. Gen. James Burns


SwordOath1

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Nov 30, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/30/98
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In article <3660FA...@icom.ca>, "David T. Shaw" <dav...@icom.ca> writes:

>
> Mascots are non-sentient. Treecats are sentient. In fact, if the crew
>treats Nimitz as a 'mascot' that just means that my initial feeling of
>discrimination against 'cats in Manticore is correct (for the record, I
>doubt the crew regards Nimitz as a mascot. I don't know about other
>'cats though...)
>

Just a point: not all mascots are non-sentient. Let us not confuse totems with
mascots.

"Mas-cot, n. a person, animal, or thing supposed to bring good luck." Webster's
Encylopedis Unabriged Dictionary.

;-)

SwordOath1

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Nov 30, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/30/98
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In article <EfY72.8336$Sf1.5...@news3.mia>, "Buz Ozburn"
<bu...@bellsouth.net> writes:

>
>But the Symbiotic Relationship must have been known about, even outside
>Manty space and in Haven. Thus Cordellia would have understood, that by
>destroying Nimitz "out of hand", she would have had an emotional basket case
>on her hands, with regards to Honor; instead of a "show piece" for a
>political propaganda exploitation show trial and execution. After all; what
>glory for the Peeps to be seen in an emotionally helpless Honor's execution
>(especially if she were little more than a gibbering idiot after Nimitz's
>execution)? Much better to be shown destroying an enemy, that appears to be
>bigger than life and as fearsome as possible, to boost the morale of the
>home folk and show even the biggest baddest Manty is still subject to the
>People's retribution and destruction.
>

<snip>

>If in fact a "Symbiotic Relationship" is the results of a Human-Cat
>adoption-bonding, then Nimitz's citizenship would not be a question to arise
>... since he is part of a single individual. He would instantly attain the
>same citizenship, rank and position Honor held. They are no longer
>individuals, unto themselves, but rather part of the same individual being.
>


Cordelia's reaction to the line Shannon and Fritz Montoya shoot her indicates
pretty conclusively that she does NOT know beans about the relationship between
'cats and adopted humans. Indeed, she reflects on the fact that she has very
little information on them (don't have the book for specific references, but
it's in the same section where Shannon and Fritz are lying like politicians).

I also don't think that anyone in the Star Kingdom regards the 'cat and human
pair as a single individual after adoption takes place; nor do I think the
'CATS see things that way. As for the Navy's specifically favoring someone with
a 'cat for promotion over someone without a 'cat, this may very well be
happening anyway IF ALL OTHER QUALIFICATIONS ARE EQUAL. I believe the example
of White Haven was adduced in another reply to this post, and he would seem an
outstanding one. So would Mark Sarnow, or Sebastian D'Orville, or James
Webster. Emotional stability is a highly desireable characteristic in any
military officer, but it is only one of several, and the fact that one person
is MORE stable than the norm does not make another person LESS stable than the
norm. I would not personally trade extra emotional stability for a difference
of 30 or 40 IQ points or overlook someone with a 4.0 in the tacics training
courses but no 'cat in favor of someone with a 3.2 but a 'cat. Besides, there
probably aren't enough 'cats bonded to naval officers to make specific policies
in favor of "'catted" humans worthwhile. In the--what? 12 or 13 years?--the
Honor books have so far covered, we have met (I believe) a total of 5 other
human beings with 'cats: Queen Elizabeth, the spacestation CO in HAE, Miranda
LaFollet, the oldest Mayhew daughter, and Harold Tschu (sp?). That isn't a lot.
It might be argued that finding 60% of the total in military service is
significant, except that 3 is still an infinitesimal number against the
millions of 2-footed people in uniform.

SwordOath1

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Nov 30, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/30/98
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In article <73q276$i...@ds2.acs.ucalgary.ca>, Deloris Booker
<dbo...@calcna.ab.ca> writes:

>
>A question that has occured to me is "how many cats form bonds with
>people?" with subsidiary questions like : are all cats capable of forming
>bonds? do cats get to pick whom they will bond with or is it a matter of a
>fortuitous encounter between the"right" cat and the "right" person (which
>would seem to be the case with the Grayson examples)? Several of the
>recent Manticorean monarches have been bonded, including her present
>Majesty - did the cats deliberately run a bunch of 'candidates" past
>each of them on state visits (or private visits for that matter) to Sphinx
>in order to do a little match-making?
>
>Just a few thoughts
>
>dbooker
>

Without getting into spoiler territory, some of the above questions are
answered in WORLD OF HONOR.

SwordOath1

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Nov 30, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/30/98
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In article <36602D...@icom.ca>, "David T. Shaw" <dav...@icom.ca> writes:

>
>Even if Nimitz isn't a citizen, he was still a sentient under the
>protection of the RMN, and so the Star Kingdom should have protested his
>cavalierly ordered execution.


Whatever Cordelia may have ordered on tape may or may not be known to the rest
of the galaxy at large. Remember that TEPES blew up and took whatever she'd
been putting together to air with her. The specific footage where Nimitz kills
two or three SS types after Honor's execution--and his own--have been ordered
very probably never aired. Remember that in EoH no one knows (or thinks they
know) whether or not Nimitz is dead, but that Honor's friends ASSUME that he
MUST be dead for the Peeps to have been able to execute Honor. This clearly
suggests that there is no official evidence that Nimitz was killed, which would
make any Manticoran protest that he HAD been killed moot. Besides, why should
the file a protest with the Sollies (which, IIRC, was part of the original
question)? The Sollies are observers who report on whether or not prisoners are
treated in accordance with the Deneb Accords. To the best of my knowlege, no
one has suggested that a Solly determination that the Peeps had violated the
Accords would have any effect at all . . . other than the possible generation
of negative publicity back home in Sollyland and (if received in large enough
doses) a gradual turning of official Solly policy against the "bad guys"
responsible for the violations. From a propaganda viewpoint (and "propaganda"
is not ALWAYS a dirty word), a denunciation of the Peeps for murdering a
sentient being (if there were any evidence that such a murder had been
committed) would make sense, but "protest" to me suggests something like a
demand for official action of some sort.

SwordOath1

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Nov 30, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/30/98
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In article <phenix-27111...@roxboro0-003.dyn.interpath.net>, John
Moreno <phe...@interpath.com> writes:

>
>Going by the text in _More than Honor_ it seems obvious to me that it

<treecat sentience>

>would have been reported to the general scientific community. The fact
>that they were a intelligent species would, at the very least, be
>available to them. But I can't judge just how well known it would be
>in the People's Republic of Haven -- they weren't big on education.
>

Even a political system with an up-to-the-date education system might be
misinformed in this point. It's been four hundred years since the initial
announcement was made, we don't know how many additional intelligent species
have been located in the meantime, and the 'cats are unique to a single planet
and clearly have deliberately restricted their interaction with humanity in
general. All in all, this sounds to me like a perfect prescription for the
prodcution of massive ignorance about them among any non-Manticorans out there.


One point about the 'cats legal status. DW has stated that an amendent to the
SK's Constitution (the Ninth, I believe) specifically recognizes the 'cats as a
sentient species. That means that any individual who has a copy of the said
Constitution in his/her data banks knows (or should now) that LEGALLY a 'cat is
an intelligent being and not "merely" an animal. Now, it is possible that some
people--Cordelia certainly springs to mind--would choose to regard that
definition of sentience as a legal fiction and so not binding upon their own
actions in the "real" universe, but the legal precedent is quite clear. This
would also, I think, answer the question as to whether of not the deliberate
killing of a treecat in anything besides self-defense would be considered
murder, as I am quite sure that by Honor's time most law codes define murder as
the intentional killing of a sentient being, not simply as the intentional
killing of a HUMAN being.

SwordOath1

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Nov 30, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/30/98
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In article <365F3D...@icom.ca>, "David T. Shaw" <dav...@icom.ca> writes:

>
>
> Rather paternalistic, isn't it? Where does the concept of doing it for
>their own good stop and violating their rights end? A very important
>question. I think in this case, the right decision was made, but on
>what basis?

I think DW has made it pretty clear that treecats are considered people with a
status roughly equivalent to that of a minor child under the Star Kingdom's
Constitution and laws. That would fit with the Forestry Service's reaction to
the mass immigration to Grayson. The authorities popped in to make sure that
some nasty childnapper wasn't carting a bunch of 10-year-old (all right,
14-year-old) kids off to another planet when the kids in question hadn't been
given full information or whatever to make an informed decision. The rangers
descended on the Harrington place, checked with the 'cats (through their own),
concluded that the move WAS the 'cats' own idea and that no duress was being
employed, and then checked back out again. Some of them may still have thought
the move was a major Bad Idea, but they didn't attempt to fight it once the
position of the moving treecats had been made clear to them.

EODRose

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Nov 30, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/30/98
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Dwight Howell wrote:

>Your argument is well reasoned and cognate as for as those creatures which
>remain in the reserves are concerned. It appears, however, that some
>populations are now moving out into places were direct human contact almost
>from the moment of birth is constant.

Good point. However that remains in the future. The treecats may opt for
learning human communication but they may not. It will be interesting how the
Mad Wizard does it.

>Under these circumstances better communication with humans and the mastery
>of more than the rudiments of human tech are vital. Don't be overly
>surprised if they start working for money. Join the military or security
>forces. Or start using some human weapons or other equipment. They have and
>use tech of their own and as soon as looking stupid is no longer useful in
>hiding from attention they are likely to stop doing it.
>

That gets real iffy. The human world is not designed for treecats, and it is
unlikely that an industry will make machines designed for treecat use. It is
more likely that treecats will settle in the wilds of the worlds they move to
(Grayson is an exception because of its hostile enviroment). As for letting
'cats in the military or civilian protective services I don't see that
happening. The biggest problem is that 'cats don't really have a sense of
moderation (ie they kill anyone who's a danger). It's true that treecats can
learn such moderation (cats that adopt do), that seems to be pretty much a case
of a 'cat humoring its pet.
The real important thing to remember when you are talking about intergrating
treecats into the human world is that they aren't human. They have differnt
values and codes that they live by. The 'cats that adopt humans learn to mimic
the values of humans but they don't really share them. For example to use the
case of a 'cat getting a job, the 'cat wouldn't really understand it because
they have no concept personal property. Having a duty that is needful to the
community is something that a treecat would understand, but having a job to get
money in order to live is something else. Treecats may understand that
intellectually (like Nimitz), but they will probably have a hard time getting
their emotions around the idea.

I like the idea of treecats becoming more involved in human society, however
I don't think that they will simply become minature humans in the process.

John Moreno

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Nov 30, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/30/98
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SwordOath1 <sword...@aol.comspamzap> wrote:

> John Moreno <phe...@interpath.com> writes:
>
> >
> >Going by the text in _More than Honor_ it seems obvious to me that it
> <treecat sentience>
> >would have been reported to the general scientific community. The fact
> >that they were a intelligent species would, at the very least, be
> >available to them. But I can't judge just how well known it would be
> >in the People's Republic of Haven -- they weren't big on education.
> >
>
> Even a political system with an up-to-the-date education system might be
> misinformed in this point. It's been four hundred years since the initial
> announcement was made, we don't know how many additional intelligent species
> have been located in the meantime, and the 'cats are unique to a single planet
> and clearly have deliberately restricted their interaction with humanity in
> general. All in all, this sounds to me like a perfect prescription for the
> prodcution of massive ignorance about them among any non-Manticorans out
> there.

Well, there were only 11 others 400 years ago so I don't imagine that
there are a lot more. Under 50 for sure and I'd imagine that it's
required to memorize the names and some info about all of them (at
least in those systems where the education hasn't gone to pot).



> One point about the 'cats legal status. DW has stated that an
> amendent to the SK's Constitution (the Ninth, I believe) specifically
> recognizes the 'cats as a sentient species. That means that any
> individual who has a copy of the said Constitution in his/her data
> banks knows (or should now) that LEGALLY a 'cat is an intelligent
> being and not "merely" an animal. Now, it is possible that some
> people--Cordelia certainly springs to mind--would choose to regard

I think the problem with Cordelia is that by this time she doesn't
believe that any laws apply to her. I'd also suspect that outside of
the Inner Circle she doesn't consider anybody else as "human", at least
not as that implies that they have rights and are due a certain kind of
treatment from her.

> that definition of sentience as a legal fiction and so not binding
> upon their own actions in the "real" universe, but the legal
> precedent is quite clear. This would also, I think, answer the
> question as to whether of not the deliberate killing of a treecat in
> anything besides self-defense would be considered murder, as I am
> quite sure that by Honor's time most law codes define murder as the
> intentional killing of a sentient being, not simply as the
> intentional killing of a HUMAN being.

I'd agree with this.

David T. Shaw

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Nov 30, 1998, 3:00:00 AM11/30/98