Author Topic: Current Perception of the Windsors and the Future of the Monarchy  (Read 104033 times)

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Constantinople

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #495 on: April 29, 2010, 07:44:42 AM »
Lindelle
          I understand your ambitions to be more like Hyacinth Bucket but do you understand the difference between a coronation and a wedding?  You could have the coronation on the beach with everyone wearing shorts and sandals but a lot of the mystique would be evaporated.  Without the religious component and the element of formalised ritual, the ability to sell the monarchy as something that should be supported by the majority of the population is lessened.
  Time to go back to the TV guide and the lotto tickets Lindelle.

Offline ilyala

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #496 on: April 30, 2010, 03:55:42 AM »
I don't really agree with that point of view. the Scandinavian monarchs are more 'real people' compared to the British monarch and i didn't hear of any referendums challenging the monarchy and trying to turn it into a republic.

The king of Sweden married someone who was not aristocratic in any way in 1976 (which is years before Camilla - who btw does have aristocratic origins - became an issue). While I wasn't even born back then, were there any scandals, were there any Sweds shouting that if he was to marry someone out of his rank, they would want a republic? I didn't read anything of the sort.

Queen Sonja of Norway is also non-royal, non-aristocratic - normal person. Prince Haakon of Norway married a woman who has a son from a previous relationship (as far as I know - not even a marriage). And yet I read nothing about abolishing monarchy in Norway!

Why is it that only British people seem to want saints and not humans for monarchs? Saints cannot understand humans. Saints are overbearing, rigid and cannot provide leadership for a country made of humans. This whole mystique idea was fine when subjects were uneducated and stupid and looked up to their monarchs to be educated and smart. Now subjects are educated, rational and (hopefully) intelligent.
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Constantinople

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #497 on: April 30, 2010, 05:25:43 AM »
The Swedish monarchy is considerably diluted but because Sweden is a very egalitarian society, that is acceptable.  Britain is the opposite and one of the ways that the current Royal family are sold is because it is not diluted.  It was very important for the Queen to marry a prince.  Camilla Shand's father was an army officer but to the best of my knowledge not aristocratic and certanly not royal.  The closest that she can claim royal association is that one of her grandmothers or great grandmothers was Mrs Keppel who was mistress to Edward Vll. 
    At some point, when there is enough dilution of royal blood, the general population starts asking the question, 'Why can't I do that job?'.

Offline CHRISinUSA

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #498 on: April 30, 2010, 10:15:48 AM »
The Swedish monarchy is considerably diluted but because Sweden is a very egalitarian society, that is acceptable.  Britain is the opposite and one of the ways that the current Royal family are sold is because it is not diluted.  It was very important for the Queen to marry a prince.  Camilla Shand's father was an army officer but to the best of my knowledge not aristocratic and certanly not royal.  The closest that she can claim royal association is that one of her grandmothers or great grandmothers was Mrs Keppel who was mistress to Edward Vll. 
    At some point, when there is enough dilution of royal blood, the general population starts asking the question, 'Why can't I do that job?'.

Granted, Camilla's background is not highly noble, but like many people today, she can trace her lineage back to as much royal blood as the late Queen Mother had in her veins.  Camilla descends from King Charles II.  Her maternal grandfather was the 3rd Baron Ashcombe; two of her great-great-grandfathers include George Thomas Keppel, 6th Earl of Albemarle and Sir Allan Napier MacNab, 1st Baronet, Prime Minister of Upper Canada 1854-1856.   Going back even further, her ancestors include Charles Lennox, 1st Duke of Richmond;  Alexander Gordon, 2nd Duke of Gordon; Archibald Campbell, 9th Earl of Argyll.

But I believe it is very narrow thinking to put so much emphasis on bloodlines when discussing how a population today views monarchy.

Yes, for centuries bloodlines were essential when determining a person's rank and position in society.  But that was an artificial concept which developed slowly over time with the sole objective of concentrating wealth and power into the hands of very few.

Originally, a leader arose from the masses because he was the strongest, best able to defend the people against outside threats.  Power did not automatically descend to offspring; it had to be earned each generation.  Eventually monarchies became elected; then such elections were concentrated in members of a single family.  From that the concept of automatic hereditary monarchy began to be codified into law, although even over the past 1,000 years there are many, many examples where bloodlines were ignored for other practical reasons.

This whole system worked just fine for centuries, but ONLY because the 90+ % of the population was poorly educated, illiterate, desperately poor, and even enslaved or indentured by laws designed to keep them that way.

None of that applies anymore, and automatic hereditary leadership has been eroding almost continuously for several centuries.  In the 16th century most King were autocratic; by 300 years later most power had shifted away from the Crown but only went as far as the nobility.  By Word War I that all ended (except for Britain where hereditary Lords still held power).  Now even that is gone.

Today, nearly every monarchy is a popular monarchy - it exist only because the people want them to, not for any of the reasons they existed in the past.  Monarchs now have to work hard to continually evolve and adapt to serve their people in a way the people want. 

I believe Elizabeth II has done an excellent job of that.  But had she insisted that her off-spring only marry other people with royal or noble blood, I believe the British Crown would be well on its way to extinction by now.

Offline Vecchiolarry

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #499 on: April 30, 2010, 10:53:02 AM »
Hi,

Back to the topic -

I wouldn't object to the venue being changed to St. Paul's or even to York or Winchester;  just as long as it's a proper Coronation (just like Mummy's)...
But, I do think that Westminster Abbey is the best place for one.  That's just my opinion!!
I know it will cost a lot of money and many people will grouse about the spendthrift and waste;  but the pomp and circumstance and pageantry and the thrilled crowds is what I remember about 1953.

I don't think any the less of the European monarchs, who didn't have Coronations.  I greatly admire Queen Beatrix, and she just had an Investiture Ceremony;  but is not less a Queen...

Larry

Offline CHRISinUSA

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #500 on: April 30, 2010, 11:09:00 AM »
I couldn't agree more Vecchiolarry.  It's funny, with every major royal event there are critics who whine about the cost, or how irrelevant it is to modern Britain, etc. etc.  Remember when they claimed the Golden Jubilee would be a bust, with nobody coming out to cheer the Queen?  So wrong.  Coronations, royal weddings, funerals - they are all exactly what many people want.

Offline grandduchessella

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #501 on: April 30, 2010, 11:44:41 AM »
I have taken the step of removing the off-topic and personal remarks from the thread. I would remind posters to please refrain from personal attacks. Some of the remarks were quite personal and aimed to be insulting. There's no place for that on this Forum as the FA has reiterated time and again. The whole discussion could have been handled with an exchange of PMs and there was no need to drag other Forum members into it merely, it seems, to be provocative and insulting.
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Offline mcdnab

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #502 on: May 04, 2010, 10:57:09 AM »
A few points about some of the recent comments which I've read with interest.

Whoever your head of state is (president or monarch) it would be expected for the State to pay them some form of salary and the costs of their official duties.

As far as I am aware those countries of which the British Monarch remains Head of State of: Australia, Canada, New Zealand etc - Do not pay anything for the annual running costs of the British Monarch just the costs of their Governor General who in effect is their 'real' Head of State. However when the Monarch or a member of the family visit those countries they pay something of the costs involved (in exactly the same way they do when other heads of state visit).
If those countries wished for their own resident Head of State that is something they are quite able to manage on their own and they can pick up the tab for it by just translating their Governor Generals into an elective and non political President.

It is rather churlish to moan about spending money on a state visit that happens pretty infrequently and why should a visit by their own, if foreign, monarch be any less welcome than a visit by any other head of state - I suspect that a visit by the President of the United States would be slightly more expensive.

On the Coronation - most British royal occassions are fairly recent inventions courtesy of Edward VII who though a King should be on display! The Coronation is pretty much unchanged in form though - with certain changes in styles to reflect constitutional and religious changes - for example the Protestant Oath only refers to the UK not to any other states.
The cost will no doubt be an issue - but i suspect will be a fraction of what we'll be spending on the 2012 Olympics and if we're that desperate we could always put the broadcast rights up for the highest bidder and take a bigger percentage on the souvenirs. Personally I hope Charles doesn't make too many changes - he can't with the oaths because they are prescribed by Statute.
The hereditary peers aren't a vital role - and could be removed with ease - using only those hereditary peers who hold hereditary offices in relation to the crown for example would cut the numbers to a handful, arguably there's no need for all 650 Members of the Commons to attend either!
Given how infrequently we have them I don't thing it matters a great deal about how relevant to modern Britain it all is....a rather nice archaic ritual that reminds us of our history and that happens probably once or twice in most people's lifetimes - we had only four coronations in the 20th Century (Edward VII, George V and VI and Elizabeth II) only three in the 19th (George IV, William IV and Victoria) and the chances are we'll only have three or four in the 21st.

On Camilla's background and the "diluted" nature of a Royal Family that's married with people not of a Royal background - it is a load of old rubbish - English and Scots King's have only had a very recent history of only marrying equally. There was no pressure on the present Queen to marry a Prince - in fact his foreign background was more of a hindrance in the post-war period - both her parents would initially have preferred a British aristocrat.

Offline Lindelle

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #503 on: May 04, 2010, 04:00:14 PM »
Regarding your fourth paragraph mcdnab, you may think it 'rather churlish', to our moaning about paying for visits - and I don't care who it's for - it's a total waste of our money when we are crying out for charities and road improvements to stop deaths. Not evryone here wants the RF to visit and if again, if she does then pay for it herself, we have our own to look out for.

Offline Grace

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #504 on: May 04, 2010, 04:14:12 PM »
How often does a royal visit to Australia happen, Lindelle?  Hardly ever.  I think the Australian government wastes money on much more trivial matters than royal visits and more often too.  I really don't think the amount spent on these is relevant in the overall scheme of things.  HM is still Queen of Australia until she is legally removed from that position, so visits from her and her family are still appropriate, in my opinion.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2010, 04:16:48 PM by Grace »

Offline CHRISinUSA

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #505 on: May 04, 2010, 05:53:37 PM »
So your position is that royal visits to Australia cause deaths because the money isn't being spend on repairing roads? 

I looked up a few things in the 2010-11 Australian national budget (it's all online).  Total spending is $338 billion. 

The Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet's total budget is $154 million (not counting discretionary funds).  That equals less than 0.00041.  And a tiny part of that covers "Ceremonial and Hospitality".  And for the year, that was spent on: 

-  37 "Guest of Government" visits to Australia (Heads of State, Heads of Government and Senior Ministers)
-  169 airport facilitations for foreign leaders either transitioning or making private visits to Australia.
-  3 State funerals and Memorial Services
-  National Day of Mourning
-  5 Council of Australian Government meetings
-  Farewell dinner for an ambassador
-  Swearing in of the Governor General
-  3 receptions for Australia Day
-  Morning tea in honour of the 2009 Australian of the Year Award Finalists

It also paid for 11 official overseas visits for the Prime Minister, an official visit to Switzerland for the Deputy Prime Minister, and the Prime Minister's visit to Thailand for the East Asia Summit (despite it being cancelled).

So, Australia spent more money on greeting foreign dignitaries to Australia ON PRIVATE TRIPS than they did on royal visits.  Oh, they also spent more on contributing to re-election funds than for ALL ceremonial and hospitality events combined.

So, if you want to reduce deaths due to bad roads, I'd start by asking the Prime Minister's office to stop contributing to his party's re-election campaigns - rather than blaming it on the Queen's visits.

Offline Lindelle

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #506 on: May 04, 2010, 08:25:36 PM »
That's All of it Chris.
The Royal visits are only part of it and NO I am DEFINATELY not blaming the RF for the road deaths.
If you care to read carefully - and into it more - we as a country need to spend money on the foremost needs here rather than wasting it on others.
Blame whoever you wish, the fact of the matter is that we would be better off being a republic. I like the RF, but that doesn't mean that I need to spend money on them when there are far more worthy causes here.

Offline Grace

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #507 on: May 05, 2010, 01:35:45 AM »
...and of course an elected president, with all his/her perks and flunkeys wouldn't cost you a cent...

Constantinople

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #508 on: May 05, 2010, 07:39:10 AM »
It is not about the cost but about the cost being spent on a foreign head of state.  To have a vestigial colonial status is not politically mature.

Offline CHRISinUSA

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Re: If the prsent Prince of Wales were to ascend the throne next week....
« Reply #509 on: May 05, 2010, 08:24:59 AM »
I certainly cannot argue with that point, and I concede it seems almost inevitable that Australia will become a republic in due course.  It isn't likely in the present reign, but most likely the next (regardless of whether that be that Charles or William).

And I'd expect that event would result in Canada once again reviewing its present structure.  Canada's constitutional formula for amending anything related to the status of the Office of the Queen, Governor General or Lt. Governor makes it a bit challenging, as these require consent of the House of Commons and the Senate, and of ALL provincial assemblies (rather than a majority of the provinces).  If I'm not mistaken, a public referendum is not constitutionally required, but would probably be considered essential before such a drastic action was taken.