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The perennial problem of overpowering piracy

IN CONTRIBUTING to this column I have been conscious of persistently giving voice to my grave misgivings over impositions of one sort or another brought upon the heads of hapless seafarers that seemed to me to constitute the worst abuses of the age. I like to think that had I lived in the 1870s, I should have wielded my pen in support of the great agitation whose wave of protest Samuel Plimsoll rode so convincingly, but when I first went to sea it seemed to me that the job, despite the ancient and indifferent enmity of the sea itself, offered fair and reasonable prospects.

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