Pirates Without Borders

The Pirate Code

against-all-flags-t-shirt-classicIn all ages, the prevailing Crown slanders any who refuse to swear allegiance, or grovel for licenses. It commissions swarms of officers and privateers to usurp our time, travel, and treasure. The Crown calls it ‘piracy’ to explore frontiers beyond it’s influence. No Crown can be trusted to respect the individual’s natural autonomy, so the responsibility falls upon us to define the conduct among pirates.

First, a pirate is the sole authority over their own life, and may not be crimped into service.

Second, duties are created by consent. Claims of obligation without consent are invalid.

Third, no pirate, nor crew, however commissioned, may initiate hostilities against any other.

Fourth, a pirate may, without permission or rank, defend themselves against any hostile party.

Fifth, no captain, nor crew can possess rights exceeding or violating those of an individual pirate.

So, if you agree that the tyranny of the Crown has sailed on sea and land long enough, and wish to shake the shackles of the world, then boldly declare, #APiratesLifeForMe!

First Letter of Captain Marque

Humanity’s long pursuit of freedom is full of desperate complaints against the Crown. Rulers and subjects alike have penned countless flowery documents claiming to limit the Crown’s hostility with signed agreements. But today any observer can see that all these poetic social contracts have been impotent to prevent the Crown’s predation, or worse, they have authorized it. Those they propped up as our liberators are now subsisting on our bondage. Limited government is a lie they cultivated to keep us submissive.

Stripped of its grandiose rhetoric, the essence of the Crown has always been rule by force. Every euphemism has only enshrined the violence inherent in the system, embodied not only by the enforcers, but in every courthouse, school and post office. Everywhere the Crown tells you, “Obey, or else.” Well, I’ve had enough of centralized force.

I am no revolutionary. I have no desire to reform your system, or run it my way. If you want your servile life, keep it. But know that the Crown can never be trusted to abide by its founding charters, nor to keep its treaties, nor even to play by its own rules. Put simply, the Crown cannot be trusted. That’s why I raised my black banner, why I’m opting out.

The folly of revolutions is that they only reset the cycle of violence. My aim is to break that cycle, and abandon the madness of expecting different results. My aim is an evolved society of individuals, invisible to the Crown. And, evolution requires viable mutation, not a new hierarchy, but new modes of horizontal innovation.

Liberation requires collaboration between free thinkers without infringement or censorship. In another age, we could meet in public spaces. Today, avoiding the Crown’s surveillance requires we exchange encrypted communication.

Energy independence turns the gears of the visionary’s imagination, and grants us individual control of our modern lives. No meaningful alternative to the Crown’s system can be achieved without exploring decentralized energy production and storage to create heat, power and incredible new tools.

Flourishing in our new autonomy requires that we construct secure habitats in which to dwell. Cutting edge materials and methods provide unimaginable new options, allowing us greater mobility, and access to many previously uninhabitable environments.

The privateers of the Crown have turned our food and water into subtle poisons, making us vulnerable in mind and body. Therefore it is essential to cultivate our own heirloom nutrition and healthful water to repair and improve our bodies.

The Crown has conspired with the medical industry to ensnare us in a web of control and dependency.

To avoid their notions and potions it is essential to take responsibility for our own health, and pursue sound medical science.

The Crown has claimed regulatory control of every means of conveyance, stifling the free travel of individuals and their property. This is an intolerable act. Superior transportation technologies already exist, but are suppressed by regulations.

Humanity’s labor has been greatly expanded by the use of machines. We must maintain decentralized automation for the future use of labor saving and humanity serving tools, or we will be victims of the Crown’s automatons.

Living in the information age has not insulated us from misinformation. When the Crown controls education it controls the very lens through which we see the world. Above all, we must teach truth to our young, to let them see the world as it is.

Obviously this is not an exhaustive list of all the tools at our disposal. The truths of the natural world work just as well for us as for any others. The road ahead requires vast and decentralized efforts and experimentation by diverse and disconnected parties. The strength of a network is not in it’s unity but in it’s decentralization, leaving no one point of failure, no centralized figure, no critical junction for the Crown to target.

So, bow down to your finely-dressed abusers, if you wish. Let them pat your heads as they slip their hands in your pockets. We won’t force you to live our way, but we will not submit to living your way. We are not your property. And, when you are ready to stop being their beast of burden, ready for adventure and opportunity, come join us on the high seas. We will not be hard to find.

Second Letter of Captain Marque

Any observer can see that communication without censorship or surveillance is essential to the enterprise of freedom. And any pirate knows that commerce is a form of communication. Markets condense oceans of information into a single data point, price. Buyers and sellers use prices to make countless decisions and speculations. When this ecosystem is free to operate, humanity flourishes, but humanity suffers when the Crown intervenes in the free exchange of property, services or speech.

Innovations in communication are erasing borders, circumventing restrictions, and contributing to a growing pool of open-source knowledge. The dauntless experimentation of this emergent decentralized ecosystem has made it possible for individuals to form peer-to-peer associations, across vast distances, outside the scrutiny of the Crown. This paradigm shift signals a change in the coin of the realm.

Any viable currency must be both liquid and solid. Liquid meaning it’s ease of use, it’s divisibility and transferability. Solid meaning the longevity of its value, it’s preservability, and stability. Long ago markets chose gold. It’s solid in that it’s scarce, never corrodes, and possess valuable utility. And it’s liquid in that it’s divisible without depreciation, making it easy to standardize and exchange.

Today the Crown produces a fraudulent paper currency and mandates its use. It makes up for paper being less solid by making it more liquid. Constant inflation depreciates the value, while an ecosystem of privateers compete to extend the life of the lie. Credit cards and online payment systems transfer huge sums of digital wealth that was never even printed. But like any skullduggery, it’s only successful until the marque wises up, and collapse becomes a mathematical certainty.

Now, the Crown uses digital currency as a new tool of predation, granting it unprecedented power to surveil, censor, seize and destroy our wealth at will. The Crown invades servers, seizes records, intercepts signals and freezes accounts. So, the currency of pirates must possess features to defend against this weaponized money.

In another age, we melted the Crown’s coin, and minted our own. We met in private spaces and traded in secret. But in space, physical money requires tremendous fuel to transport. Digital signals are weightless, and can be easily sent to frontier settlements. In a digital economy piracy requires a new currency that is peer-to-peer, without third party observation, that can be exchanged using an encrypted signal. It must combine the solidity of precious materials, and the fluidity of digital information. We must move funds further, faster and cheaper than ever before, and make decisions based on an ever accelerating flow of information. So, pirates require virtually instantaneous transactions, with no arbitrary limits on volume, or artificial influences on fees.

Most importantly, a pirate currency must preclude centralization. It must endure as a decentralized network in the face of an adversary that wishes to crimp it into service. Otherwise it will become another link in our chain to the Crown. Given the choice, a superior currency with these features will result in the obsolescence of the coin of the realm, and the extinction of the Crown itself.

Ye Olde Parlance

  • #Hazzah: Prost! Wassail! L’khaim! A barbaric yawp of merriment.
  • #Ahoy: The pirate’s ‘Aloha’. “Hello.” “Goodbye.” “I love you.”
  • #Aye, #Arr: Yes (#AyeAye or #Yarr for ‘Hell yeah!’).
  • #Nay: No. Nay means Nay. Nacho booty!
  • #Pirate, #Buccanneer, #Corsair, #Freebooter, #Hacker, #Swashbuckler: Paths of piracy. Commerce, Adventure, Transportation, Energy, Encryption, and Activism respectively. Not an exhaustive or definitive list.
  • #Privateer: A mercenary of the crown granted a charter of incorporation. A public/private partnership between crown and contractor. Not a pirate!
  • #Bucko, #Matey, #Heartie: Escalating terms of affection among pirates.
  • #Privy, Head, Latrine: Bathroom.
  • #PrivyMonster a beast that lives in the privy and eats children.
  • #SeaShanty: Work songs that are sung aboard a pirate ship.
  • #Belay: Halt! To ignore a command as in ‘Belay that order!”
  • #Scallywag: A collector of taxes, or any bilge rat who pays them.
  • #Landlubber: A lazy scoundrel too proud of their flag to live a pirate’s life.
  • #Barker, #Hawker: A vendor who calls customers to their wares.
  • #Crimp #Shanghai: To press gang someone into serving the crown against their will, or the one who crimps.
  • #MonkeyJacket: A short jacket which conceals a pistol.
  • #ParleyVest: Formal garb to wear during negotiation, especially between enemies over the terms of a truce.
  • #Keelhaul: Dragging some vile scallywag across the bottom of the ship with a rope to be lacerated by the hull’s barnacles or drowned.
  • #Booty, #Loot: Treasure, usually liberated from the crown.
  • #SeaDog, #OldSalt #OG: An experienced pirate.
  • #Kraken, #Leviathan: Sea monsters.
  • #Mutiny: A bottom-up resistance against corrupt authority, as in a pirate belaying a captain’s order that violates the pirate code.
  • #PirateCove: A hideaway where a pirate can make a sweet trade away from the eye of the crown.
  • #PirateUtopia: A pirate cove where the grog is strong, the markets are free and the associations are voluntary.
  • #Pillage, #Plunder, #Taxation: Theft.
  • #PiecesOfEight: One eighth of a Bitcoin, or 0.125 BTC.
  • #KingsShilling: A dollar, also known as a Federal Reserve Note. To “take the King’s Shilling” is to accept payment to serve the crown’s hostilities.
  • #Gibbet: A metal cage where scallywags are displayed as a warning.
  • #SwingTheLead: Get to the point. The opposite of ‘bury the lead.’
  • #Undertow: The demand for goods prohibited by the crown.
  • #BeachComber: A landlubber who makes their living selling to pirates, or a pirate who makes their living selling to landlubbers.
  • #Mudhook: Bureaucratic drag. The long delays and surprise
  • fees which characterize all dealings with the crown.
  • #Slop: Perishables sold to fellow pirates.
  • #Swag: Merchandise sold to beachcombers and landlubbers.
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