By ann summers
For pirates, talk is cheap and perhaps subordinate to buckling swashes and its stereotypical, romanticized pirate discourse made even more weird by “parley” as texts made popular by a Disney theme park ride have cinematically distorted the reality of actual Somali or Malaysian piracy as does a film like Captain Philips. The Donald and his recent CNN GOP debate success is perhaps the latest example of such a media manipulation, as if Deals were Art rather than artifice. Arrrrr…me hearties.
Leeson (2007) suggests that the internal governance of criminal organizations like pirates might have libertarian significance, misunderstanding that its dependence on the institutional elements of trade over-determine its invisible(sic) governance mechanisms. That so few have been prosecuted for being banksters since 2007 demonstrates that internal governance is not working and that the GOP continues to see financial crisis as a feature, rather than a bug. Unlike a combative Bernie Madoff, Donald Trump manages to mug for a media willing to keep him out of jail and abet a growing cult of thugs. CNN’s use of Trump in covering the GOP debates cynically presents him in that same way as a kind of media piracy or more appropriately, privateering as a libertarian capitalist meme.
A pirate code, pirate articles or articles of agreement were a code of conduct for governing pirates. A group of sailors, on turning pirate, would draw up their own code or articles, which provided rules for discipline, division of stolen goods, and compensation for injured pirates.
The recent CNN GOP debate with its record viewing audience is such an example of modern media piracy and its manufactured rules like one that privileges the next turn for the last mentioned name are symptomatic of the plundering of the democratic public sphere.
That CNN created artificial rules of fairness(sic) for so-called nonpartisan media sponsorship rather than use those used by the League of Women Voters during the actual primaries show how simultaneously constructing and attacking Donald Trump may simply legitimate more corporate and less public discourse.
OTOH tRump is a pirate’s caricature of a modern capitalist and venture capital is seen as entrepreneurial raiding via mergers and acquisitions (and bankruptcy restructuring). Unfortunately the citizen’s mediated right to parley as public advocacy in a democratic public sphere has been plundered by corporadoes. Arrrgh just doesn’t tweet well, there are no Robin Hoods, and the government runs like Wolf Hall.
The meaning is simple — “my friends, my mates” — as in “drink up, me hearties” or “meet at Starbucks, me hearty.”
But there are many ways beyond simple speaking to celebrate Talk Like a Pirate Day on Saturday.
It was an idea born in 1995 on a YMCA racquetball court in Albany, Oregon. John “Ol’ Chumbucket” Baur and his friend Mark “Cap’n Slappy” Summers began unleashing insults at one another, as pirates might.
They selected September 19, simply because Summers had recently divorced, it was his ex-wife’s birthday, and he figured “the date was stuck in my head, and I wasn’t going to do anything with it anymore,” he told CNN in 2009.
But it wasn’t until humorist Dave Barry caught wind of the idea and threw his support behind it in a September 2002 Miami Herald column that this rickety ship took sail.
“As the name suggests, this is a day on which everybody would talk like a pirate. Is that a great idea, or what?” Barry wrote back then. “There are so many practical benefits that I can’t even begin to list them all.”
The institutions of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century pirates, in contrast, provide an important glimpse into the typically invisible governance mechanisms that support cooperation inside criminal organizations.
(Leeson’s) analysis of the law, economics, and organization of pirates leads to three conclusions.
- First, ordinary “foot soldiers” inside criminal organizations may face a problem of leader predation similar to the problem citizens under governments face with respect to political rulers.
- Second,the institutions that constituted the pirates’ system of governance—democratic checks, the separation of power, and constitutions—are remarkably similar to those governments employ to constrain ruler predation in the “legitimate world.”
- Finally, organized criminals are as interested in creating order among themselves as noncriminals. They, too, have an incentive to develop solutions to obstacles that otherwise prevent them from cooperating for mutual gain.
And hasn’t it always been about plundering booty.