Those gosh-darned Ventrusian armadas, man.
But, yes, this was the other thing I was thinking while watching If Wishes Were Horses. And, I mean, the episode goes there in the softball way Star Trek goes places, by playing ultimately with the idea that the existential threat to the station in the third act is in fact one of Dax’s imagining, but it stops short of murdering everybody with an errant thought or fundamentally rewiring the universe.
I suppose the argument is that the aliens without imagination who were responsible for the whole thing weren’t actually trying to harm anyone, but they’re beings to whom the very concept of imagination is fundamentally alien, so it’s hard to credit them with too much plausible care in this scenario. “Fascinating, they seem to have blown themselves up” feels like a pretty believable outcome if you set aside the Everything Will End Okay For Our Heroes stipulation.
(Related, but one of my favorite stories about the ramifications of imagination is Ursula K. Le Guin’s The Lathe of Heaven. If you’ve never read it, do so, it’s a wonderful bit of fiction.)
And the thing I forgot to mention in the previous strip’s writeup (and which I was trying to play with in the strip itself) is that there is, of course, a natural explanation for why Sisko didn’t imagine Jennifer coming back to life: it’s because Picard never wanted his character to have a wife, he just wanted to have had tragically lost a wife.
Having Jake running around being autonomous is bad enough, clearly.