Skip to main content

In a unanimous decision of the 9th circuit court of appeals in San Francisco, the Sea Shepard anti whaling ship and crew are now pirates.

“You don’t need a peg leg or an eye patch,” Chief Judge Alex Kozinski wrote for the unanimous three-judge panel. “When you ram ships; hurl glass containers of acid; drag metal-reinforced ropes in the water to damage propellers and rudders; launch smoke bombs and flares with hooks; and point high-powered lasers at other ships, you are, without a doubt, a pirate, no matter how high-minded you believe your purpose to be.”
http://seattletimes.com/...

Not the first time an animal rights group has crossed the line into illegality, to date the Sea Shepard folks haven't killed anyone.

I don't think that being labeled a pirate by the court is any sort of legal term. In photos the group flies the jolly roger flag which in some places in the world like Somalia or the straights of Malacca might lead to trouble. If they violate the court order to stop messing around it might make returning to Friday Harbor problematic.

I have no opinion on whaling if it's done in a way so as not to endanger any species. I can't imagine any circumstance where I'd eat whale meat, sounds expensive.

It's good to stick up for what you believe and all but it sounds kind of a bit much.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Seriously? (13+ / 0-)

    You're expecting sympathy for whalers on this site?  Good luck.

    (BTW, it seems that every diary you pot has an anti-animal agenda. What's up with that?  Why post that stuff here?)

    The next Noah will work a short shift. - Charles Bowden

    by Scott in NAZ on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 06:11:05 PM PST

  •  well the whalers are themselves supposedly in (23+ / 0-)

    violation of various international agreements and treaties and the Sea Shepherd argument is that what they are doing is no more than a neighbor using whatever means necessary to detain or prevent a criminal from gaining access to a locked facility.

    As far as violence against the whalers, it seems various interest groups give as good as they get, as seen in the Rainbow Warrior incident where a national government sank a environmental group's ship.

    Here is the group in their own words
    http://www.seashepherd.org/  

    •  Private ships... (0+ / 0-)

      ...are not authorized to attack other vessels on the high seas to prevent treaty violations (even assuming those are actually taking place.)

      •  Then does this mean a tanker, upon determining (0+ / 0-)

        they are being tracked by an apparent pirate has to wait to be attacked before being allowed to take offensive measures?

        "Private security" in many parts of the world is the only resource.  Under the rule you cite, a private vessel, observing another vessel under possible imminent attack, should take no action to come to that vessel's succor?  

        •  The whalers are authorized to defend themselves. (0+ / 0-)

          Especially after this ruling.  Sea Shepard is the obvious aggressor here.

          You can't (as a private citizen) attack someone conducting illegal fishing any more than you can rough-up someone for parking in a handicapped parking space.

  •  Leaving Aside the Issue of Whale Intelligence, (8+ / 0-)

    is there a species that can be harvested sustainably by anything higher tech than natives in portable boats?

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 06:19:30 PM PST

  •  every single branch of our government (12+ / 0-)

    is a solely owned subsidiary of Corporate America.  Every single one.  They allow us to vote for our own entertainment.

    Oregon: Sure...it's cold. But it's a damp cold.

    by Keith930 on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 06:20:30 PM PST

  •  Recommended for the info and intrigue value. nt (4+ / 0-)

    "In all chaos there is a cosmos, in all disorder, a secret order." Carl Jung

    by Unduna on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 06:34:34 PM PST

  •  I did not know about the court decision. (9+ / 0-)

    Rec for information and update on the legalities.  

    I think the Sea Shepherd group goes a bit too far, but on the other hand the whalers go much further into outlaw territory.  Research on whales?  Really?  I have some great beachfront property in Wyoming to sell you if you believe that.

    I am definitely not a vegan, but don't like the whalers and would not eat whale meat or use whale products on a bet.  I think some of the Sea Shepherd guys behave badly too, but IMHO they are not "pirates."  In many ways their tactics are not too much different from Greenpeace.  

       

    The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

    by Otteray Scribe on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 06:42:13 PM PST

    •  Eh ? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ban nock
      In many ways their tactics are not too much different from Greenpeace.

      Drop the name-calling MB 2/4/11 + Please try to use ratings properly! Kos 9/9/11

      by indycam on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:03:43 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Greenpeace disowned Paul Watson over his radical (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ban nock, raincrow

        ways. And you think it was the other way round??!

        •  You misread what I was saying. (6+ / 0-)

          Greenpeace uses their ships to disrupt things and events they oppose. So does the Sea Shepherd group.  That is where I see the similarities.  There are extremists in every group.  I already said Watson and crew are over the top, but I do not see them as "pirates."

          Greenpeace has suffered retaliation and equipment destroyed, and so has the Sea Shepherd group.  The monied multinationals and some governments do not like either group.

          The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

          by Otteray Scribe on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:52:20 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  In reality they have two opposite ways (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            raincrow, Agathena

            of doing things , two different minds of how to get things done . I've been on the rainbow more than a few times and I've been to a Sea Shepperd ship . I've talked with both .
            To say they are even sameish in tactics is a gross misstatement .

            Drop the name-calling MB 2/4/11 + Please try to use ratings properly! Kos 9/9/11

            by indycam on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 09:21:52 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Paul Watson and a third of the founders. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          raincrow, Agathena

          He was "disowned" because he interfered with the agenda of the modern Greenpeace organization, which is not anti-whaling.

          You heard me.

          http://www.commondreams.org/...

          income gains to the top 1% from 2009 to 2011 were 121% of all income increases. How did that happen? Incomes to the bottom 99% fell by 0.4%

          by JesseCW on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 09:08:16 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  From the article (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            JesseCW

            Paul Watson:

            "There is no such thing as sustainable whaling. The trouble with Greenpeace is it's just one big feel-good organisation. Sometimes I feel like Doctor Frankenstein."

            Greenpeace insists the aggressive approach will backfire in Japan, where whale meat holds sentimental value for some baby-boomers who ate it after the devastation of World War II.

            Thanks, I'll tell my daughter to cancel her monthly payments to Greenpeace. How weak-assed can they get.
            •  They've become just another group that raises (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Agathena

              funds to raise funds.

              They haven't sent a boat to the Southern Ocean in a decade now.

              income gains to the top 1% from 2009 to 2011 were 121% of all income increases. How did that happen? Incomes to the bottom 99% fell by 0.4%

              by JesseCW on Thu Feb 28, 2013 at 04:26:50 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  i'm not going to condemn the whole global group (0+ / 0-)

                I am going to see what they are doing about the Canadian Tar Sands. They have published some great photos of before/after scenes of the boreal forest. I'm just disappointed that they compromised on whales.

                There are plenty of other forms of protein besides whale that the Japanese can eat. As for tradition, some cultures used to be cannibalistic, should we respect that tradition too? (rhetorical question.)

    •  Anyone who think Japanese kill whales for research (6+ / 0-)

      is a fucking idiot.  They set out to kill close to 1000 whales a year and yet after all these years not one paper on the 'research' they've been conducting has been published.  But all that whale meat somehow gets sold off.  

      If they were just doing research they wouldn't be spending millions of tsunami relief funds to arm their ships and they wouldn't be sending in armed battleships and copters to stop a bunch of 'pirates'  with makeshift boats crewed by a bunch of peace loving vegans.  

      This is about money, plain and simple.  It's the same reason they slaughter thousands of dolphins while trying to catch a few to sell off for hundreds of thousands of dollars to Sea World so the kids can see Flipper in action.  It's the same reason why they and others are over fishing the Blue Fin Tuna to near extinction.  Just one Blue Fin fetched over $1.8 million in Japan this past month.

      Greed is killing our oceans and idiots are applauding it.  If our oceans die it's game over for us.  

      This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

      by DisNoir36 on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 08:34:24 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Totally against both whaling and the (4+ / 0-)

    Use of illegal tactics against whalers.

    “liberals are the people who think that cruelty is the worst thing that we do” --Richard Rorty Also, I moved from NYC, so my username is inaccurate.

    by jeff in nyc on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:01:08 PM PST

    •  And illegal tactics used against anti whalers ? (5+ / 0-)

      Drop the name-calling MB 2/4/11 + Please try to use ratings properly! Kos 9/9/11

      by indycam on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:16:45 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Call out the Navy or Coast Guard. I will (0+ / 0-)

        assure you that most governments take poaching extremely seriously, to the point where Canada and Spain nearly came to battle over cod in recent years. I think we'd bomb the shit out of a boat that killed whales in our territory and would not comply with our orders...and that's how it should be.

        “liberals are the people who think that cruelty is the worst thing that we do” --Richard Rorty Also, I moved from NYC, so my username is inaccurate.

        by jeff in nyc on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:21:52 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Australia is terrified of pissing off a major (5+ / 0-)

          trade partner.

          They're playing around in court and refusing to police their own waters.

          income gains to the top 1% from 2009 to 2011 were 121% of all income increases. How did that happen? Incomes to the bottom 99% fell by 0.4%

          by JesseCW on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:38:35 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  That sucks, and it's too important (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            raincrow

            an issue for Australia. They have 1 Billion ravenous people quite near their waters, and they should enforce the shit out of all fisheries agreements.

            “liberals are the people who think that cruelty is the worst thing that we do” --Richard Rorty Also, I moved from NYC, so my username is inaccurate.

            by jeff in nyc on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:39:54 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  They had a PM who wanted to pursue serious (5+ / 0-)

              action.

              He was taken down in a power play from inside his own party.  His replacement was a center-right hack who would fit in nicely with the New Democrats here at home.

              The US promised the Japanese years ago that we would "take care of" Sea Shepherd one way or another and re-legalize commercial whaling in return for Japan agreeing to stop killing target highly endangered Right and Fin whales as well as reducing their quotas a bit.  

              It was leaked by Bradley Manning, so things took a back burner for a while.

              Now, Pirate Deceleration in their hot little hands, you can expect this administration to keep their promises.  One way or another, they always do when those promises are made to people with enough cash.

              We're passed the second election, now.  The "Environmental Lobby" doesn't matter anymore.

              The next step is to end the moratorium on commercial whaling.

              income gains to the top 1% from 2009 to 2011 were 121% of all income increases. How did that happen? Incomes to the bottom 99% fell by 0.4%

              by JesseCW on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:49:15 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

      •  Whalers are well-armed. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        raincrow
  •  T&R for the update (7+ / 0-)

    Sea Shepherd's fight is not over.
    Piracy, however, is a legal designation.

    LBJ, Lady Bird, Anne Richards, Barbara Jordan, Sully Sullenberger, Ike, Drew Brees, Molly Ivins --Texas is no Bush league! -7.50,-5.59

    by BlackSheep1 on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:02:15 PM PST

  •  As "pirates" go they are weak . (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ban nock, tommymet, Canis Aureus

    Get back to me when they take over ships , make the crew work or go overboard , sell off the stolen goods , ransom the captain , etc etc etc .

    High seas hooliganism ...

    Drop the name-calling MB 2/4/11 + Please try to use ratings properly! Kos 9/9/11

    by indycam on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:19:46 PM PST

  •  At least they are registered in the US (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ban nock, tommymet, raincrow

    Help me to be the best Wavy Gravy I can muster

    by BOHICA on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 07:33:10 PM PST

  •  US courts (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JesseCW, raincrow

    Have no jurisdiction over Sea Shepard Australia. They can call them whatever they want. It doesn't matter.  

  •  They're not pirates..... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ban nock

    The Constitution gives Congress the power to define and punish piracies.  Just how it has been defined is pretty interesting.  Piracy: A Legal Definition

    They are without doubt criminals.  

  •  Japanese admit to illegally whaling (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JesseCW, raincrow, annieli, Farugia, S F Hippie
    In Tokyo a top-level defence of the hunt has been made, but sharply dismissed by Environment Minister Tony Burke. Fisheries Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi underscored the importance of marine food security to Japan and said criticism of whaling was ''a cultural attack''.

    ''In some countries they eat dogs, like Korea,'' Mr Hayashi said. ''In Australia they eat kangaroos. We don't eat those animals, but we don't stop them from doing that because we understand that's their culture.''
    With Australia arguing at the International Court of Justice that Japan's scientific whaling is a sham, Mr Burke said Mr Hayashi had virtually conceded the hunt was nothing to do with science. ''It's significant for them to have abandoned any pretence of a so-called scientific reason,'' Mr Burke tweeted.
    Mr Burke did not address Mr Hyashi's comment about kangaroos, but added: ''How absurd has the argument become, if Japan is now arguing that it has a traditional cultural practice of travelling from one side of the planet to the other to kill whales in a whale sanctuary.''

    Read more: http://www.theage.com.au/...

    Japan has been whaling using a loophole for 16 years.  That loophole allows whaling for 'scientific research.'  

    Only there was never any research being conducted.  They've all but admitted that this is about protecting their commercial whaling industry.  Which means that they've been illegally whaling for 16 years now.  In a whale sanctuary no less.  

    So who is breaking laws here, the illegal whalers or a bunch of volunteers throwing rotten butter at them and trying to stop them from killing whales by getting in their way?  

    Oh and that jolly roger flag you refer to has a dolphin and a humpback whale in the skull.  Somehow I doubt the real pirates off Somalia won't be too afraid of Sea Shepherd if they were ever to see the jolly roger flying.  

    This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

    by DisNoir36 on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 09:12:11 PM PST

  •  This is bullshit on stilts. Sea Shepherd operates (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JesseCW, raincrow, S F Hippie

    under a UN mandate that states that, since the whaling is done in unclaimed, open waters --the "high seas" where there is no territorial jurisdiction-- then it is up to "any interested parties" to take it upon themselves to enforce the law. And that law is, no illegal whaling (which is what the Japanese whalers are doing).

    Hell, if anything, they are a high seas militia, using non-lethal means, to subdue lawbreakers. And I also love pointing out to my Libertarian friends how Sea Shepherd is living up to the Libertarian principles of voluntary group action to enforce the law in a lawless area (I love the case of intestinal worms they get when I point that out).

    Sea Shepherd is in the right, but this law means that, as pirates, they are outside the protection of international law on the high seas and can literally be made to walk the plank if captured, if a bloodthirsty captain is so minded. Pirates are considered the rabid dogs of the sea and no one will get too worked up if you shoot them or hull their ship and leave them to the mercies of the elements.

    This encourages a potentially bloody escalation on the part of the pro-whalers.

  •  Pirates my fat white ass. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JesseCW, Farugia, S F Hippie

    Pirates steal. Pirates kidnap. Pirates interrupt honest commerce. Is it piracy when we "intercept" ships carrying embargoed materials to a government we don't like?

    Specifically when it comes to Japan, its government lied outright to get their whaling exception, and everyone knows it -- "research" that ends up in school lunches and on the grocer's shelf at $12 to $25/lb. Since they are not actually doing research, they are engaged in an illicit trade, and if they are not engaged in honest commerce, how can the Sea Shepherds be committing piracy?

    Shit-stirring? Definitely. Vandalism? Definitely. Assault? It's not always clearcut since the Japanese whalers have themselves been extremely aggressive.

    The Ninth Circuit threw a bone to the Japanese government. I smell politics. 85% of Okinawans want us OFF the island after the last gang rape, we need Japan's continuing logistical support in any major dust-up with China, etc., etc., etc.

    Declaring the Sea Shepherds pirates is the first step in making it illegal for U.S. citizens to donate money to them. A pretty little plum for Japan, I should think.

    YES WE DID -- AGAIN. FOUR MORE YEARS.

    by raincrow on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 09:21:41 PM PST

    •  This is the basis of the bullshit, really. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Farugia, raincrow

      The claim that interrupting commerce is Piracy.

      Piracy is, at its core, about stealing.  We all understand that.  It's not about preventing someone from fishing or blocking a strait so they can't transport goods or blocking them from illegally refueling south of the 60th parallel.

      1) The Japanese were denied an injuction against Sea Shepherd Australia on multiple grounds.

      2) They went to the 9th Circuit, which granted the injunction and then spent 2 months coming up with a reason why.

      3) The 9th decided that one party in the case were pirates, a ruling totally beyond the scope of the matter before them, and they removed the Judge hearing the case simply because they didn't like his reasons for denying the injunction.

      Now, any Judge who is assigned the case from here on out knows she will be overturned if these same three circuit Judges hear an appeal.  

      They already decided the case, when all that was before them was a fucking injunction!!!!

      income gains to the top 1% from 2009 to 2011 were 121% of all income increases. How did that happen? Incomes to the bottom 99% fell by 0.4%

      by JesseCW on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 09:40:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Important Background - (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Farugia, raincrow

      http://www.care2.com/...

      You can bet there's going to be another effort by this Administration to re-legalize commercial whaling in the near future.

      The deal clearly wasn't ended by exposure - just delayed until right after re-election.

      income gains to the top 1% from 2009 to 2011 were 121% of all income increases. How did that happen? Incomes to the bottom 99% fell by 0.4%

      by JesseCW on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 09:43:34 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I love that web site,,, and have been reading (0+ / 0-)

        it for years now. I seldom finish an article but I do laugh pretty hard. I can't read the animal torture stories they love so much but I do read the wildlife ones.

        The torture stories lead me to believe some sick people read there. I mean who can read about drowned kittens in excruciating detail for thousands of words?

        The wildlife stories read almost like a caricature of whacked out animal lovers. The stories are so formulaic I sometimes suspect the writers care nothing of animals and are just in it to get paid by the word. I should try to write one.

        How big is your personal carbon footprint?

        by ban nock on Thu Feb 28, 2013 at 04:37:15 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  T and R for the diary... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ban nock

    ...but I don't believe the ruling itself is accurate.

    As has been pointed out elsewhere, the actions of this group don't seem to fall into the legal definition (or, really, even a more general definition of piracy), but do appear to be illegal.

    The personal digs at the diarist were out of line and not necessary, but sadly unsurprising these days.

    Yes, I often dress as a pirate. Your point?

    by theatre goon on Thu Feb 28, 2013 at 03:58:48 AM PST

    •  I too thought the label to be kind of strange (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      theatre goon

      I think they were upholding a suit brought by the whalers claiming the Sea Shepard was acting as a pirate.

      I'm interested in most animal news especially legal. I think posting in the evenings leads to a certain type of readership.

      How big is your personal carbon footprint?

      by ban nock on Thu Feb 28, 2013 at 04:41:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  That makes sense. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ban nock

        If the suit itself used the word "pirate," then in upholding it then the term would apply in that sense.

        I'll refrain from further observations of readership that what I have already given, in the interest of diplomacy.

        :-)

        At any rate, I appreciate your diaries, particularly about the legal aspects of wildlife -- even though I miss a lot of them because we often seem to be on different schedules.

        Yes, I often dress as a pirate. Your point?

        by theatre goon on Thu Feb 28, 2013 at 04:45:15 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  As I understand it, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    theatre goon

    The definition of piracy is any use of force on the high seas for any private (ie, not directed by a sovereign state or recognized belligerent) purpose.

    The legal question, therefore, is "is political advocacy a private purpose?" The 9th Circuit says it is... That's hard to argue against.

    --Shannon

    "It is better to die on your feet than to live on your knees." -- Emiliano Zapata Salazar
    "Dissent is patriotic. Blind obedience is treason." --me

    by Leftie Gunner on Thu Feb 28, 2013 at 09:18:37 AM PST

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site