My Money Theory

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Ternian, Feb 2, 2003.

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  1. Ternian Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2000
    star 4
    Attack of the Clones ushered in the "beginning of the end of the Republic" and the introduction of an era of major changes for the galaxy.

    Before the Clone War, the Republic had access to a vast fortune from the commerce guilds and trade factions. Senator's like Amidala and Orn Free Taa could lavish amongst large wardrobes and penthouse apartments: factions had the money to create large armies and pay large amounts of money for bounty hunters.

    In TPM the Republic is beginning to crumble, commercially, under its own weight. In TPM, the Senate tries to impose taxes on the Trade Federation because the Republic can't support itself.

    "In order to rein in the Trade Federation, as well as raise funds for an overburdened government, the Republic approved the taxation of outlying trade routes." - Trade Federation, Star Wars.Com

    In AotC, Anakin mentions that investigations into the Trade Federation are halted because they threaten the monies of the Republic.

    "The Jedi have not been allowed to investigate. It would be too dangerous for the economy, we were told." - Anakin, Attack of the Clones, scene 38

    So what happens when the Trade Factions and Commerce Guilds split from the Republic and their monies start to dwindle in Episode III under the duress of the Clone Wars?

    We can only assume that in Episode III the Republic will be scrambling to keep itself alive. Already in AotC and TPM we know that money is an issue for the Republic. Now, with the major commerce guilds jumping ship, the Republic can only crumble under the stress of its own size.

    We know that by ANH the wealthy gowns of senators begin to resemble Leia's simple white gown; starships will need to reuse metals from older starships and get a more plate like finish - a time of change in the galaxy.

    So what hints will this change give up for the story of EpisodeIII?

    It suggests that in order to keep the ideals, and security, of the Republic alive, former systems of the Republic will have to align themselves to a single body with a single purpose by handing over their treasuries. Collecting tax will now come under the jurisdiction of a commerical Empire - created to fuel a large military power that will protect any system that may come under attack from Confederate forces.


    LANDO: So, you see, we are a small operation, we don't fall into the...uh...jurisdiction of the Empire.

    LEIA: So you are part of the Mining Guild then?

    LANDO: No, not actually. Our operation is small enough not to be noticed...which is advantageous for everybody since our customers are anxious to avoid attention to themselves.
    - Empire Strikes Back, Cloud City

    Alderaan, being a major player (commercially?) within the Galaxy, may begin by lending it's wealth to an Empire.

    This may be the chance for Palpatine to declare himself Emperor and then slowly strip away the foundations of the Republic embedded in this commercial Empire. After all, a commerical Empire - like a committee, needs a head of proceedings.

    It would then make sense for a Rebellion to begin with systems that believe that their alliance with the Empire no longer brings them protection at the end of the Clone Wars - especially if they defeat the confederacy and are simply funding their own civil war.

    Theory A: Money. :)
  2. GrandAdmiralJello Community and Lit moderator person

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    Nov 28, 2000
    star 10
    I don't see money as the direct factor that allowed for the creation of the Empire.

    Rather, I believe that Palpatine had the Commerce Guilds break away so that he would have an excuse to nationalize them once he defeated the CIS.
  3. Ternian Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2000
    star 4
    Same type of situation though: the factions come under the control of the Empire while other systems are forced back in.
  4. GrandAdmiralJello Community and Lit moderator person

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    Nov 28, 2000
    star 10
    Yes. Very similar, but the motivation is different.
  5. DarthAttorney Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 8, 2000
    star 6
    I dunno.....

    Money doesn't seem to be a huge issue in the rest of the Saga. At a street level I know that Han Solo thinks seveteen thousand credits will save him from Jabba and that it was huge amount to pay for passage to Alderaan from Tatooine, that Lukes landspeeder was worth 2000 credits, that Han had a bounty on his head large enough to attract the best bounty hunters, that Qui-Gon Jinn had 10,000 Republic credits which Watto thought were utterly worthless in the Outer Rim (even though he was confident that it was enough for a hyperdrive anywhere else in the Galaxy), that the Kaminoans charged a lot for the clone army (and from what Dex told Obi Wan the Republic would have needed a lot more).....but otherwise I don't think credits ever really came into the storyline.

    How much would an X-Wing cost?
    A Star Destroyer?
    The Death Star?

    And would the cost of these things (no doubt the first DS cost a bloody lot, for a battle station the size of a small moon) be a factor in the formation of the Empire? I think that as the expenditure increased, the cash flow in would have to increase as well to meet it. It may be more of a friendly economic takeover for Palpatine than a brutal military one. Systems with no money for security forces are hardly in a position to defend themselves against the Republic Navy, right?
  6. Ternian Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2000
    star 4
    Points that allow the theory to pass into the OT:

    1. Money has split the Republic - why wouldn't Palpatine use it to form the Empire?

    2. If systems are dependent on the foundation of the commerce of the Republic, they have no reason to question an Empire - especially since it is beneficial to everyone.

    3. The Senate can continue since the democratic process isn't a threat under a commercial Empire.
  7. merlin Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 29, 1999
    star 4
    [color=663300]Ternian brings up some good points about the state of the Galactic Economy. I believe GL put the economy into the storyline for a reason. My belief is that it is just one more of the ways that Palpatine is able to gain control of the Republic and create his Empire.

    1st: He knows the economy is in trouble and he set up the Trade Federation to resist against the Taxation of the Trade Routes.

    2nd: After the Trade Federation, the Commerce Guild, and Banking Clan, and the Geonosians (who apparently build quite alot of machinery) start to break away, the Republic is desperate to get things back in order.

    3rd: This is how Palpatine gains total control. Knowing of his "clone army", he is sure he can defeat the threat of the seperatists even before that begin to pose a true threat.

    So I believe that money (or the lack thereof) may be the catalyst that thrusts Palpatine into power. Just another political ploy that helped him create an Empire. [/color]
  8. Ternian Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2000
    star 4
    The basis for the original Star Wars draft was money - if I remember correctly.
  9. Katriel Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 5, 2000
    star 4
    I think money is a symptom rather than a cause of the sickness that invaded the Republic. Power was the sickness and the ultimate goal. Of course one can assume if you have all the power then you will have all the money as well.

    On the Death Star Vader was unconcerned with the cost of building the station. He didn't boast how much it cost or that it was the most expensive structure ever built. He was more concerned with the manpower/clonepower needed to complete the station. He wanted power derived from having complete control over all inhabitants of the galaxy. Money was secondary. As long as he had enough hands to do the work money was not his main concern.
  10. toochilled Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 17, 2000
    star 5
    The PT is a stunning indictment of globalisation and the rule of large companies becoming more powerful then the rule of government.
  11. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
  12. MeBeJedi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 30, 2002
    star 6
    "3. The Senate can continue since the democratic process isn't a threat under a commercial Empire. "

    That's a pretty strong point in and of itself. The Senate does continue on into ANH, where it is finally dissolved. Palpatine now has a definitive tool in the Death Star to enforce his will, rather than play petty politics and money games.

    Money doesn't have to play a major role in the entire saga, merely a pivotal role in its change, for plot purposes. He has to wait until he is completely and financially independent from his constituency before he take take over by force. Perhaps it took him this long to have enough clones made to enfore his rule? Regional governers now help the Emperor rule the Empire, rather than the elected officials. It took time for Palps to get all his chess pieces in place.

    "Of course one can assume if you have all the power then you will have all the money as well.

    Money was secondary. As long as he had enough hands to do the work money was not his main concern."


    But money is a type of power. The President has many powers, but Congress controls the purse. It's one hell of an inducement for these two branches to cooperate. If Congress doesn't pay for troops, the President's war-time powers don't last very long (60 days, if I remember correctly.)

    "The PT is a stunning indictment of globalisation and the rule of large companies becoming more powerful then the rule of government."

    Exactly. This would explain the focus of the Trade Federation in the TPM. Sidious clearly has some sort of deal with them, and it probably involves "kick-backs" for Sidious' war fund. The "money" theme may not necessarily thrown in our face, but its effects are clearly seen in the PT.

    Nice work, Ternian.
  13. bulbabot Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jun 3, 2002
    "The PT is a stunning indictment of globalisation and the rule of large companies becoming more powerful then the rule of government."

    Actually, it seems more like it is an indictment of a government that taxes its companies too much. If the Republic had not been controlled by pork-spending buerocrats, then the taxing of outlying trade routes would not be an issue.
  14. OBI-GYN_Kenobi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 25, 2002
    star 3
    I agree that there's an awful lot of money oriented factions like The Trade Federation, Commerce Guild & Banking Clan mentioned in the Seperatists make up.

    The lack of funds to support the Republic not only helps Palpatine to consolidate power under himself to 'fix' the situation, it helps explain why the technology appears to go backwards from PT to OT.

    For a real life corralation, look at what elects presidents:
    "It's the economy, stupid." as James Corvelle told Bill Clinton every chance he got in 1992.
  15. DamonD Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 2002
    star 6
    The Seperatists managed to pull in some very powerful guilds and organisations under their wing, it's no wonder that the Republic felt very threatened by this. It's not the only reason, but the financial loss of such organisations and planets leaving the Republic would definitely hit hard.

    It shows just how much planning went into the Seperatist movement - it wasn't a rush job, or even a group of large armies. It's very well funded, armed, and with politically powerful backers. Unlike the Trade Federation in TPM, which has certain political backing but had problems when it came to the technology used and lack of allies.
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