Ricochet is the best place on the internet to discuss the issues of the day, either through commenting on posts or writing your own for our active and dynamic community in a fully moderated environment. In addition, the Ricochet Audio Network offers over 50 original podcasts with new episodes released every day.
Yes, good things sometimes come from the Ninth Circuit, especially when Judge Alex Kozinski is presiding. This decision involves a eco-terrorist group known as Sea Shepherd, founded by Canadian Paul Watson, who split from Greenpeace because he didn’t think the Rainbow Warrior crowd was sufficiently aggressive.
After years of constant, violent harassment by Watson and his cronies, Japanese Whalers took Sea Shepherd to federal court in the US under the Alien Tort Statute, which provides a remedy for breaches of international law, including (at least arguably) laws against piracy. Watson of course insists that the Japanese guys are the pirates, but Judge Kozinski disagrees. Here’s the opening of his opinion:
You don’t need a peg leg or an eye patch. 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.
What’s a liberal to do? This is exactly how the Legal Left wants the Courts to function. Universal jurisdiction! Enforcing international law! Law of the Seas! Except, gosh darn it, the good guys are supposed to win, not the nasty whalers (who, by the way, hunt whales only by virtue of permits defined by international law).