John Locke is a test for Ben

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John Locke is a test for Ben

Post by MyStarbuckHatesLost on Thu Jun 26, 2008 3:32 pm

I was just thinking of the qualifications of John Locke to be the leader of the Others as compared to Benjamin Linus.
Here's what I came up with;

Locke:
Knows nothing about the island, Jacob, the Others or even the Dharma Initiative.
Has no idea about what the Island or Jacob's powers are.
Failed at everything he ever tried.
Failed the test that Richard Alpert gave him as a child.
Failed to go to the science camp as a teen and remained a man of faith though the island clearly tried to guide him to be a man of science via the science camp.
Showed bad judgment which resulted in the deaths of Boone and Eko and the destruction of the Swan Station. (which probably lead to the island becoming visible for Widmore to find)

Ben:
Knows just about everything there is to know about the island, Jacob and their powers.
Even when not agreed with, has the power to motivate and/or manipulate just about anyone into doing what he wants.
Has connections, resources and power off the island to help carry out the island's/Jacob's agenda.
Is dedicated to the island to the point of still working to protect it even when he has been cast out!

I know that I've highlighted Ben's good points and Locke's bad points in regards to being the leader of the Others, but even when switching the argument around in favor of Locke, Ben still wins.

Sure Ben has shown bad judgment, so has Locke.

This leads me to believe the following:
The island/Jacob may not really want Locke to be the new leader of the Others. Locke may just be a test for Ben like the cancer might have been; Something to strengthen Ben, make him tougher, wiser, more humble and to make him an even better leader in the future.

Maybe the island/Jacob just wanted to give a really powerful attitude adjustment to Ben. After all, it is one thing for a boss to tell an employee that they are not doing a good job and may get fired. It is another thing for a boss to fire that employee, let them twist in the wind for a while and then to rehire them, give them a second chance if they perform better.

I'm not comfortable with Jacob wanting Ben gone because he made bad decisions, mostly because it is such an utter waste of talent. Richard Alpert told Locke that Ben was "distracting us with fertility issues" which means that Jacob allows free will to be exercised by the leader of the Others. That means that Ben's mistakes were Jacob's mistakes as well.

I think Jacob may just be using Locke to make Ben a better leader and to bring him "back in line with the program" After enduring what he is about to face, Ben will return to the island (and have no doubts, he WILL return to the island) and once again be the leader of the Others. And he will be a better leader, at least from Jacob's point of view, than he was before. He will be renergized, recommitted and his life's work will be directed towards carrying out Jacob's agenda, whatever that may be.

Remember: ...it is easier to retrain a worker than to hire a new one and train them from scratch.
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There's only one qualification that counts.

Post by Occam on Thu Jun 26, 2008 3:48 pm

Locke is a man of faith. Ben is --now-- a man of science.

How did Ben qualified for the position of Major of New Otherton? Because he joined the "Hostiles" in their war against Dharma... people of science. Faith dictated Dharma should be purged, and they were.

As soon as Ben started "going Dharma" --or, in Locke's words, being a pharisee-- his leadership was questionable. The Island brought Locke to replace Ben. The Island put Locke to test, and he succeeded. Locke is a true man of faith and, if you need any evidence, just take a look at how many gadgets he destroyed.

Ben didn't cut his "umbilical cord". He kept contacting the outside world and mingling in cover war operations outside the Island. That's not what the Island wants. Locke, on the other hand, wants nothing else but the Island itself. He wants to own it, but he's willing to be owned by it --it's only fair.

It's not a question of knowledge. It's a question of faith.

PS: Did I just kill the thread?



PPS: Well, definitely, I think I did.Sad

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Re: John Locke is a test for Ben

Post by retroactiveman on Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:30 am

Occam: faith in enlightenment is still faith, but in science. The enlightenement, freedom from gods pere-spective in all spheres (science, philosphy, history, industrialism, capitilism, ... all) based on the mastery of objects by the subject depends on your belief in it. This faith for some can become repressive. Ben's move was speculative, reasonable. I dont know if I would call it based on faith.

Starbuck, Ben is moving up and mowing down the historical chain. He is an obvious patsy built to fail. Ben has already sublated the greek model of Dharma, He has basically allowed the divine right model with him as king to be overrun, the utilitarian/democratic model of which Locke now finds himself will be sublated as well. Its a dialectic where the successor sublates the predecessor.

So you are right Locke is a test that will be overcome and incorporated.
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Re: John Locke is a test for Ben

Post by Occam on Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:47 am

retroactiveman wrote:Occam: faith in enlightenment is still faith.

Of course. But I wasn't talking about faith in enlightenment, but about science. Science, you know, has this thing about questioning itself until proven true without doubt. And, usually, that never happens. So science is not faith.

There's people blindly swallowing whatever sounds as scientific. They have faith.

Anyway, my point was that Ben lost his focus. Why? I don't know. Maybe those who say Annie's death because of an hypothetical miscarriage made Ben nutter than he usually is, and that's why he was "distracted with fertility issues". Anyway, I'm with Locke when he calls Ben's people pharisees. At least, Ben is a pharisee. Ben keeps talking about the Island's wonders, but lives in a small town with refrigerators, ovens, and the like. That's not what we see about the Hostiles, when they first contact Ben.

Just as AngeloComet proposes >> here <<, I think the Hostiles inherited Dharma's way of life. That's not "being in tune with the Island", in my opinion.

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Re: John Locke is a test for Ben

Post by retroactiveman on Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:50 am

ok, faith in science is still faith in science
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Re: John Locke is a test for Ben

Post by retroactiveman on Fri Jun 27, 2008 12:55 am

Occam: Characterizing the Dharma as people of science? Sure they use cool gadgets, but they have faith in the scientific method to reach ends. Certainty, or the removal of doubt stops in the subject. Do you believe in this?

Sorry for the double post.
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Re: John Locke is a test for Ben

Post by Occam on Fri Jun 27, 2008 9:37 am

Do I believe in what? And what does it matter what do I believe about anything? I'm talking LOST, here...

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Re: John Locke is a test for Ben

Post by TheHolyStickman on Sun Jun 29, 2008 1:50 am

Ah, good to see youre still posting MSHL. This is a good point. Why
sacrafise and A just to get a B. Then again Occam did make a good point
that Ben wasn't faithful to the island. We'll have to see how season 5
plays out.

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Re: John Locke is a test for Ben

Post by DontDisJack on Tue Jul 01, 2008 3:48 pm

MSHL - you argue that Ben is better qualified than Locke to lead the Others as he knows the secrets of the Island and has powerful off-Island connections, while Locke has neither. But clearly when Alpert "recruited" Ben, Ben was not aware of these secrets and did not have powerful off-Island allies. He had something else they were looking for. So I'm not convinced this line of argument supports your theory.

But, I do agree that Locke's tenure as leader won't be a "success" in the way that Ben's was, because Locke doesn't seem to have quite the same level of commitment to protecting the Island as Ben (see Ben directly killing his father as opposed to Locke having to get Sawyer to do it; and Locke being able to kill Naomi but not Jack to stop the fregither being called).

I like the idea that Locke’s apparent installation as Head Other is a test to make Ben a stronger protector of the Island, but I am leaning towards a different conclusion: that Jacob/Richard/A.N.Other have actually made a mistake. Someone (Jacob/Richard/DI/whoever) have had their eye on Ben for a long time, but he always doesn't quite hit the mark (see "Cabin Fever"). Similarly to Ben, Locke is only accepted when he kills his father. The only thing is, Locke didn’t actually kill his father. He got Sawyer to do it. So it could be viewed that not only did he fail the task (compared to Ben), but he tricked the Others into thinking that he successfully “passed”. I am starting to think that they were so hopeful of Locke’s potential that he has been overpromoted and will again fall short of the required standard.

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Re: John Locke is a test for Ben

Post by MyStarbuckHatesLost on Thu Jul 03, 2008 6:07 pm

DontDisJack wrote: Locke doesn't seem to have quite the same level of commitment to protecting the Island as Ben
I like that line and I agree with it

Ben's comittment to the island was 100% but Locke's seems to be more of a personal quest, even a selfish one. He seems to be more comitted to not being back in a wheelchair or returning to what he himself called his "pathetic little life" on the outside world.
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