The News-Review

A Service of the News Bureau of the Government of the Twelve Colonies

First Presidential Debate!

Posted by Fleet News Service on January 16, 2008

I join the others in Captain Halberd’s room on the 7th Heaven. Present were myself, Captain Halberd, Interim President Vielle, the Oracle Eyea Aya and Commander Nephilim. Cpt. Halberd welcomed us to have a seat and opened by stating this was an informal answering of questions.

The Oracle was the moderator began with the first question posed to President Vielle…”There has been many crisis’s and tensions in the fleet, from unrest by certain factions to a general lack of food and clean water , to name a few. How do you propose, to deal with these issues?”

I will quote the candidates responces to the questions….President Vielle replied “Well more than anyone I am aware of the dire situation with regards to both water and food. Food in particular came under my remit as the Secretary of State of Agriculture, a position I would still have now if I hadn’t been asked to step up to assume the reigns of executive power recently. I have been the driving force behind the growing hydroponics program throughout the fleet, to date we have almost reached a stage where we are*almost* self sufficient. However, recent attacks on these facilities have meant that the situation has become much worse. To address this we have made the production of even more hydroponics facilities a top priority and we can see this even in the increased number of tanks present in the dome of the 7th. All i can say this program will continue with my full weight behind it, even if in the short term we have hardships. There will have enough food.” Cpt. Halberd having a minute to think of the question replied quickly…”That is a very complex question. The most important part of it is good leadership. I believe that good leadership has been lacking in the fleet, on the civilian side, for a long time. Leadership is needed to get people to rally behind causes, support initiatives, spur creativity. We haven’t had that. Tensions in the fleet are caused by factional divisions and by crime. Factional divisiveness can be stopped with good leadership that represents the whole fleet and is not constantly attacking the military, and crime must be addressed by vigilant security. Our food and clean water must come from good engineering projects that made Ms Vielle so popular with the fleet. There are so many good things we can do together…”

Both candidates replied stongly…President Vielle standing behind her support of hydropinics at supply the fleet with food…and Cpt. Halberd pushing for strong leadership to steady the tensions. the Oracle continued with the next question to Cpt. Halberd, “We all owe our lives and thanks to the military for protecting and guiding us through this vastness of space. That said, is the military establishment looked at by you as a partner or warlord? Also, how do you foresee this relationship to be in your term if elected?

Captain Halberd replied with a smile, “Thank you Eyea. I support our military in their efforts to protect us, and to risk their own lives for the saftety of the fleet. Everyone knows that I am one who embraces all of our citizens in Afterburners, and do not follow after the factionalism that has been favored by some. I clearly believe that we are in a respectful partnership with the military. My life reflects that on a personal level, too, as you know…” Then back to President Vielle, “I have *always* been admirous of the undaunted and unceasing efforts of the Colonial Military to protect us from our enemy. While the president is the Commander in Chief I know that any civilian is just that a civilian and will work in partnership with the military and take their advice on how best to protect us all. But in return there is the matter that there must be a separation between the two that the military serves the fleet and does not dictate to it. Again this is aquestion of partnership in action but knowing that ultimately it is the president who makes the final decisions looking at the wider picture beyond that of the military. I have already taken steps to establish closer links between the civilians and the military in just the last week, and I hope that the good signs we have had so far will continue into the future. We are all working together for humanity’s survival after all. But ultimately there must be no conflict of interest between the two: military and civilian.”

Cpt. Halberd seemed to desire the military have a cooperational relationship with the government while President Vielle saw the position of the military to be seperate and ultimately its actions decided on by the President. Moving from the military to the Cylons…both were asked by the Oracle, “What is your view on the Cylons and how would you have us deal with them?”

President Vielle responded first, “The Cylons are our enemy. That is a fact. The billions who burned on the twelve colonies from Cylon agression teach us that. However, we must face reality. We are a small fleet of survivors, on the run from a vastly superior enemy (in terms of numbers). We do not even know really what their ultimate goal is. Saying it is our destruction is too simplistic. We need information, the only way we will get that is from talking to them. If my time on New Aerelon has shown me nothing else it is that we know more now from our time in contact with our enemy than we did before. They are riven by divisions of their own, and they are willing to disagree and defect. We can use that. We need more information so we can find the best way to deal with our enemy.” The question the asked to Cpt. Halberd, “Me? Thank you. We are at war. I don’t like Cylons, and I don’t trust them. They are capable of deception and subterfuge at the most cunning of levels. I admire Commander Nephilim for her courage to take swift action when the Cylons attempted to gain the upper hand through trickery. I was very vocal in saying that the planet called “New Aerelon” by some was a trap, and I was right. Unfortunately, we lost a lot down there and gained little. I believe we must be armed and treat them like savages they are at all times.

The Cylons are a hard issue…both candidates spoke strongly with President Vielle showing a desire to learn about then and use that while Cpt. Halberd spoke of treating them as savages. The Oracle askes one last question, “Ms Halberd…. First,, do you believe in the Sacred Scroll’s when they say that earth exists? Also… what is your position on finding earth?”

Cpt. Halberd replied, “I strongly believe that the scrolls are accurate. Too many of the guideposts and markers indicated by the scrolls have been found for them to have been legend or coincidence. Obviously, the Lords of Kobol visited and came back. I am very anxious to follow the path toward earth that we embarked on. My greatest fear is, however, that the Cylons may either be ahead of us or right behind us in our quest. We must take every advantage that we can to ensure that we arrive before they do.” And President Vielle replied smiling, “I believe in the Gods. Through the sacred writings we are given a philosophy to live by and an understanding of the universe. This is what makes us human knowing that the Gods in whatever form guide us always. In this manner if somehow our ancestors managed, maybe under divine presence, to convey the path to earth in the form of the sacred writings, then yes I believe we can make our way there. Any information that will help us find sanctuary must be utilised. Does Earth exist? Well it is hard to *prove* it does or that it does not. Humans live on hope, and Earth represents hope. In that way I believe Earth exists and we must follow the path. But I agree with Captain Halberd, we must take care that the cylons simply do not wish us to lead them to Earth…”

Cpt. Halberd showed a stronger faith in the writings of the Sacred Scrolls while President Vielle took a more philosophical approach…but both agree the path to Earth must be sought after and we must get there before the Cylons. I asked one closing question to the both…”If elected…who will you put forward to the Quorum for approval and why?”

Both were quick to answer…President Vielle first, “Why, I would propose the lady sitting opposite me (Cpt. Halberd) who I and all the people I talk to think we would make a great team. We may not see eye to eye on many issues, but i do not see her as an adversary but as a fellow colonial willing to do their utmost for the preservation of the Twelve Colonies.” Cpt. Halberd replied with a little uncertainty and a laugh, “I was going to say you, Ms Vielle. I have talked to several people who are too smart to get into politics, so I am still open on that front.”

The Oracle offered both candidates a closing statement…Cpt. Halberd first, “Thank you, Eyea. Yes, I would like to say that I started as a house maid on a ship like this, cleaning guest rooms when I was 16. I worked my way up to bartender and eventually to navigator and captain. I know what it takes to earn a living and to be kind to people who are important to you. I want to be accessible to all people in the fleet very frequently, just as I am now in Afterburners. That’s my “Afterburners Party.” I love all the people of the fleet, military, OPSEC, and civilians. We are all needed to make our lives mean something and to get us through this.” President Vielle replies, “There are many challenges facing us. Challenges that I have accepted even in my short time as the Interim President of the Twelve Colonies. When I came aboard the Seventh Heaven, over two years ago, wide eyed and still afraid from the daily raids by our enemy I had no idea of the path it would lead me down. But each challenge and setback I undertook willingly to help my fellows, and that still stays true today. Every decision I make I weigh heavily and act in the best interests of the Twelve Colonies. I am amazed at the job everyone does, and the way every colonial holds up to the pressure, and I am humbled at the strength and determination in their eyes to survive. I would seek to weld that into a way we can be free of our enemy.. forever.”

With the debate closed…everyone excused themselves with pleasantries…now I ask everyone to seek out the candidated and ask them questions of your own!

Ms. Pink, The News-Review

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