Democracy owes it’s existence to pirates!

Pirates pursued democracy, helped American colonies survive

Pirates practiced the same egalitarian principles as the Founding Fathers and displayed pioneering spirit in exploring new territory and meeting the native peoples, said Jason Acosta, who did the research for his thesis in history at the University of Florida.

Like the American revolutionaries, pirates developed three branches of government with checks and balances. The ship captain was elected, just as the U.S. president; the pirate assembly was comparable to Congress; and the quartermaster resembled a judge in settling shipmate disputes and preventing the captain from overstepping his authority, he said.

Colonists and pirates also were alike in emphasizing written laws, democratic representation and due process, Acosta said. All crew members were allowed to vote, ship charters had to be signed by every man on board, and anyone who lost an eye or a leg was compensated financially, he said.

These ideals grew out of both groups’ frustration at being mistreated by their leaders; the British forced the colonists to quarter troops and pay taxes, and captains on merchant ships beat their shipmen, starved them and paid less than promised, Acosta said.

“It’s no wonder that many sailors seized the opportunity to jump ship and search for a better way of life, namely piracy, which offered better food, shorter work shifts and the power of the crew in decision-making,” he said.

Shiver me timbers, that’s awesome.

Somewhere high above us, the Flying Spaghetti Monster is smiling.

Technorati Tags: , , , ,

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: