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....somebody had to say it.
Pirates COOLER than ninjas? I might give you that. Ninjas can't really compete on the coolness scale outside of their abilities - outside of being kickass assassins they lead pretty dull lives, aren't wild and crazy like pirates, and you don't ever see what they look like or get to know them at all. You wouldn't invite a ninja to a party, but a pirate is the life of the party. Since you never see a ninja, ninjas can't really be all that sexy either - Johnny Depp would never play one. A role where he doesn't talk and you can't really see his face? Forget it. So yes, pirates are perhaps cooler than ninjas if you ignore what ninjas can do.
It's probably just a personal opinion thing. I think superhuman stealth is much less boring than swashbuckling. In videogame terms, I love playing Hitman on silent assassin rating so much more than all those other games where you hack and slash or just shoot things.