Last year, I regaled ye with the words of Captain Black Sam Bellamy. Tempted I was to do the same again, for those words stir this old salt's blood, but why repeat meself when a link is as good as a lecture?
Instead, from sinner to saint I'll go, and bless ye with words of a loftier source, St. Augustine's City o' God:
Justice being taken away, then, what are kingdoms but great robberies? For what are robberies themselves, but little kingdoms? The band itself is made up of men; it is ruled by the authority of a prince, it is knit together by the pact of the confederacy; the booty is divided by the law agreed on. If, by the admittance of abandoned men, this evil increases to such a degree that it holds places, fixes abodes, takes possession of cities, and subdues peoples, it assumes the more plainly the name of a kingdom, because the reality is now manifestly conferred on it, not by the removal of covetousness, but by the addition of impunity. Indeed, that was an apt and true reply which was given to Alexander the Great by a pirate who had been seized. For when that king had asked the man what he meant by keeping hostile possession of the sea, he answered with bold pride,
"What thou meanest by seizing the whole earth; but because I do it with a petty ship, I am called a robber, whilst thou who dost it with a great fleet art styled emperor."
'Tis appropriate indeed that the blessed saint who so defended us an' tarred the lords an' mighty with the same brush as we lent his name, long years later, to a Florida town well-known as a pirate haven.