So... do Pirates have a position / opinion on this kind of thing?


context: a Greens member has publicly named her rapist, who was a Greens office holder, and allegedly protected for years by other members of the party.

bit of a shitstorm. getting some VERY ugly comments.

Aren’t there courts for handling this sort of thing? I for one am in no position to know anywhere near enough to judge anything about this.

From Part 3, Section 4.5 of the Party Constitution:

  1. The National Council may refuse to accept an application for membership by any individual on the grounds that the acceptance of the membership may be prejudicial to the interests or values of the Party.
  1. The National Council also has the power to suspend or expel a member should that individual’s membership or actions whilst a member be prejudicial to the interests of the Party.
  1. Any refusal to admit a person as a member, and any suspension or expulsion of a member, shall be accompanied by a written statement of reasons for the action, and this statement is to be made available to all membership (unless requested to be kept confidential by the member affected).
  1. A refusal of an application for membership, or the suspension or expulsion of any member may only be decided by a two-thirds majority vote of the National Council.

In short, the NC can kick any member out if they believe they are damaging to the Party, and I’d reasonably expect them to Not Be Arseholes about protecting people who don’t deserve it (i.e. instances like this where the person’s a literal serial rapist).


If you mean the assault, she said she went through the “”“justice”"" system’s motions to get basically nowhere thanks to a terrible investigator.

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Thanks! That is pretty much what I was hoping for, something that could be referred to and hopefully enacted if something similar were to occur. Important to have this stuff clear. I’m not sure how the Greens are with it, but it’s a PR debacle and a real problem if predators are protected.

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Surely we would not kick somebody out merely due to Twitter accusations? Suspend them awaiting the outcome of the legal proceedings of any major crime and kick them out once they’ve been found guilty (or if they get off on a technicality). But we gotta have a presumption of innocence, don’t we?


It isn’t that straight forward. Sexual assaults are very hard to prosecute due to their private nature. Beyond reasonable doubt is a high bar for prison for good reason, however not guilty does not necessarily mean innocent.

Whilst we can’t pass judgement, we have to take reasonable steps to protect members from sexual assault and if accusations are made, we would have to take them very seriously.

We haven’t had to deal with such serious allegations, but we have had interpersonal conflict that required us to mediate to stop it damaging the party. The best way to deal with these problems is to talk to the involved parties privately and see if there is a mutually positive solution. If the harmed person is not happy with that, their right to feel safe should be the primary consideration. If we have to ask the accused to leave, then so be it. Asking someone to leave does not mean that we think they are guilty, just that making the victim feel safe is a higher priority in that situation.


Not to mention in this case specifically the victim had her case sabotaged by a bad investigator, thus meaning she had basically no chance to go before a court at all, let alone get a guilty verdict.

I agree that internal investigation can take place (which can find a person guilty even if a court of law has found them innocent) and that the member can be temporarily suspended and that we should take any steps necessary to separate the alleged perpetrator of the crime from the victim of the crime (blocking access to forums, making no contact conditions or any appropriate temporary participation restriction for alleged perpetrator).

But, the suspension/investigation period should be fixed (example 3 months), within which NC must reach 2/3 majority agreement to kick the member out. If the 2/3 majority cannot be reached within the fixed period, period can be extended by 2/3 majority agreement. If neither 2/3 majority can be reached, the case should be automatically dropped.

While protecting victims is important, protecting victims of malicious accusations should be just as important.

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We aren’t qualified to decide guilt or otherwise in any way, but we have to protect the Party. Making a pronouncement that blahblahblah is guilty of sexual assault would open us up for a suing unless they are found guilty by a real Court too. Investigating a sexual assault is almost always horrific for the victim, and if they have to relive it with the Police, they aren’t going to want to relive it with our own investigators too, who aren’t even trained at dealing with traumatised people.

I also don’t think it is possible to have fixed periods of ‘investigation’, if the Police are involved it may not be resolved for years. That said it is something that we would want to resolve as soon as possible. It takes a 2/3 vote to remove someone from the party.

I err on protecting victims and if I have to decide between victim and accused, I will side with victim as a matter of principle. Victims have everything stacked against them in cases of sexual assault, I personally don’t want to be stacked against them too.


This is somewhat concerning. Are you saying that in the hypothetical case where there is absolutely no evidence beyond one person saying one thing and another saying different, you would side with the accuser? Because that’s just begging for someone to game the system.

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Agreed. Presumption of innocence is the is the very foundation of the modern Western legal system. If we can’t come up with reasonable internal policy that presumes innocence I shudder to think what would happen if we were ever to get into a legislative chamber.

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Yes. I think the damage to the victim caused by rape is greater than the damage caused by a false accusation. This is not only true on a personal level, it is true on an organisational level too. You just have to look to how the Greens are looking after the accusations yesterday to see the political damage that default believing the perpetrator can do.

We are not a court of law. We have no way to determine guilt or otherwise. I believe that sexual assaults are a bigger threat than false accusations of sexual assault. How could we possibly collect evidence? Demand semen samples? Video? It is not something we are capable of judging as an organisation and we should not attempt it.

We can only do what is in the best interests of the Party. Asking an accused to not take part in party activities until the issue is resolved, if it can be is what I think is best for the party.


Please think about what you state before you state it. Do you realise that I could, for example, accuse any random party member of rape right now, and by your own statements about a situation where one person says one thing and another says different you would have to believe me?

Sounds more like political damage caused by investigators not doing their job. Again though, you’re not thinking things through. Do you realise that if guilt by accusation was the default in these cases, even if nothing had happened there would still be the same political damage involved?

One would hope so. But the best interests of the Party would be acting to uphold the Party values. And guilty-until-proven-innocent is definitely not part of them.

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You do realise that the situation above was not simply he said / she said, right? That there were multiple women who made similar complaints over a period of years, and yet nothing was done, and in the specific case, legal avenues were being explored?

And even if it were… Do you have any idea how painful it is for rape victims to actually go public (being overwhelmingly women in a patriarchal, victim-blaming society)? In these cases, YES the victim needs to actually have more rights, because we are not playing on a level playing field.

It’s very heartening to see the opinions of the president strongly siding in this direction, because I do think it’s a very big issue, and especially with PPAU having overwhelmingly male membership, that a clear stance on this is, IMNSHO, definitely likely to increase gender parity in membership.

And, yanno, just be the right thing to do.


Not talking about the Greens situation, but rather Frew’s position on a hypothetical thought experiment.

The gender makeup of PPAU membership is utterly irrelevant as to whether policies are sensible or not. This sentiment of guilt by accusation and identity politics can fuck right off.

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I would make the call after talking to the parties involved. [quote=“Frew, post:7, topic:1249”]
The best way to deal with these problems is to talk to the involved parties privately and see if there is a mutually positive solution. If the harmed person is not happy with that, their right to feel safe should be the primary consideration.

See my above quote. Stop trying to twist my arguments. Also I think there would be more damage from wrongly believing a rapist than believing a false accuser.

It is not about guilt, it is about creating a safe space for victims.

Because you keep ignoring the central premise of my argument even though I bolded the main bit for you, I will quote it again.

Unless you have some radically better argument than anything you have said so far, there is no way I would change my approach to these situations. If you don’t like it, run against me for President at the Congress.


:rofl: Dare I point out that a hypothetical false accuser is not a victim, and that you’re falling right into the politically correct trap of feelings over facts and witch hunting?

I saw that bolded bit the first time. I happen to agree with it. Thus, the only suggestion I can really make is that policy should involve fully cooperating with law enforcement investigations. Something that allegedly didn’t happen in the Greens case.

Me running for president wouldn’t be appropriate for a few reasons. Fortunately, there’s a non trivial chance of you voluntarily stepping down over another issue you’ve taken a rather unpiratey stance on.

No he’s not. He’s recognising the reality of the world we live in being unbalanced and, it looks like, wanting to make a difference to even the balance. This is not a level playing field situation like you are trying to make it out to be.

One thing that continually shits me to tears about libertarians (or those who quack like them) is the complete disregard for even the concept of privilege, and the hatred of actually giving a hand to those who need to be raised up. Usually the people saying this crap are white males.

Just curious, are you a white male, jedb?


gags self



I support feminism. So?

As I keep saying, we cannot make judgements as to guilt, but if someone is traumatised it is pretty fucking obvious. Making them safe would always be my first priority.

I think it is you who have taken the unpiratey stance on the issue. Take Black Sails as an example, the Pirates and the Maroons teamed up to kick out the British. Supporting the cause of the most marginalised group in society with the aim of rectifying past injustices is a piratey cause if ever there was one. If the party takes a conservative (as in reactionary) stance on these issues, I would not belong here.