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British Establishment on the brink

 
 
Reply Mon 3 Nov, 2003 11:00 am
The Monarchy, the Conservative Party and the Church of England are cracking up. The monarchy has been exposed as a putrid sick-making can of worms. Its twin pillars of temporal and spiritual affairs i.e. the Conservative Party and the Church of England respectively are tearing themselves apart. The Church is in a terminal dog fight over gay bishops, and the Conservative Party (despite their latest new leader) has lost faith. There is irony on irony here. The C of E, founded by a previous monarch with himself as its Head so he could get divorced, is now under pressure from the current heir to the throne to be disestablished because he wants to marry a catholic. Political in-fighting in "the Tory party at prayer" over such matters as gay rights threatens permanent schism. Meanwhile The Conservative Party has put all its remaining faith in the second coming of a Jewish Exile from Transylvania to save it from eternal damnation.

The whole creaking wobbling rotten ediface stands on the edge of the cliff.

Its time for all good men and women, from the political left, centre and right to give it a push. Exclamation
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Type: Discussion • Score: 0 • Views: 2,574 • Replies: 52
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kitchenpete
 
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Reply Mon 3 Nov, 2003 11:32 am
Steve,

The Conservatives may have a credible leader, but are still not a credible party, I'm pleased to say!

CofE is becoming increasingly irrelevant to the population. The whole gay bishop thing makes me sick - it appears that pressure from those in "developing countries" who can't abide the thought of homosexual priests couldn't handle it. I don't know which is more wrong - the underlying anti-homoexual bigotry or the slur on "developing countries" (aka "savages" not 2 generations ago!)

I'm not too bothered about the monarchy...they'll become less and less relevant as time goes by...but the majority of the country loves them, I think.
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Steve 41oo
 
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Reply Mon 3 Nov, 2003 11:50 am
KP I actually want to see the Conservative Party survive. If it implodes it will leave a dangerous vacuum on the right which could easily get filled with the far right nuts.

I'm sure the monarchy will survive out of apathy, though it doesnt deserve to.

I was just struck with the whole interconnection and irony of the foundations of the establishment all falling at once!
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kitchenpete
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 05:50 am
Steve,

The Today Programme, this morning, featured a discussion on the merits of disestablishment of the Church from the State.

For what it's worth, I would far rather have a state which declares its secular nature and does not (inherently, if not consciously) promote Christianity.

KP
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Steve 41oo
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 06:14 am
I didn't hear that KP.

Takes me back to when I was a boy and learnt that 'antidisestablishmentarianism' was the longest word in the dictionary. I can't wait to start using it in everyday conversation.

Whats it mean btw? Laughing
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the prince
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 06:20 am
To be honest, not only the three pillars, the entire country is tottering on the brink......
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Steve 41oo
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 06:24 am
Also we criticise Muslim countries because there is no division between religious and state authority, when of course the Head of the Church of England is also the Head of State.

It would suit Charles if the Church of England was disestablished. He could call himself 'Defender of Faith' marry Camilla and live happily ever after, safe in the knowledge that he was true to his conscience.
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Steve 41oo
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 06:29 am
Hi Gautam. Have some good pics of you in the Bombay Brasserie with Piffka and mr Piffka...BUT someone (who will have to remain anonymous) ie Ros, didn't get a cd, so I will have to show them to you at our next meeting. Walter should be here on the 6th btw. What you doing for lunch?
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Wilso
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 06:29 am
The very existence of ANY monarchy disgusts me. It's based on the premise that the worth of an individual human being is based on an accident of birth. ie, who their parents happen to be.
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Steve 41oo
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 06:35 am
Agree Wilso

Genetic inheritance should not be qualification for high office. Unless of course you happen to be the son of Rupert Murdoch.

How ironic btw that those who claim to rule by accident of birth are a bit touchy about having their pedigree examined. Does anyone think Prince Harry (the spare heir) has a drop of Saxe Coburg Windsor blood in him?
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Wilso
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 06:39 am
Steve (as 41oo) wrote:


How ironic btw that those who claim to rule by accident of birth are a bit touchy about having their pedigree examined. Does anyone think Prince Harry (the spare heir) has a drop of Saxe Coburg Windsor blood in him?


Nope. He's about as closely related to Charlie as I am.
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Wilso
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 06:39 am
And I've got my doubts about the older one too.
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the prince
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 06:41 am
The Monrachy is increasingly irrelavant now. It really does not matter whether its exists or it does not. Who cares - they provide some cheap amusement to the tabloid readership, and that is the extent of their usefulness.

We have more pressing problems than the monrachy.
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the prince
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 06:42 am
Steve - that sounds good - let me know the place and time on 6th - I have a clear diary on that day....
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Steve 41oo
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 08:15 am
I thought the first one was ok

W=William=Windsor

But the other one

H=Harry=Hewitt

is a dead give away
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Steve 41oo
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 08:31 am
Quote:
We have more pressing problems than the monrachy.


I agree. Like abolishing fox hunting? And the House of Lords. And holding an INQUEST into the death of Diana Princess of Wales.

But the monarchy is an embarrassing anachronism in the 21st century. I don't see why the British taxpayer should fund this soap opera for the entertainment of the rest of the world. I had hoped the Queen might have taken the opportunity to pack it in and go with some dignity after the golden jubilee. [The Queen has earned respect...she takes the job seriously]

But it seems collectively they are determined to do it the hard way, death by a thousand revelations of wrong doings, scandals, embarrassments and cover ups.
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Walter Hinteler
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 11:35 am
Defenately would like to have a snack and drinka a pinta milk with some Royals, but certainly celebreties from North India and North England will do much better Laughing
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Setanta
 
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Reply Tue 4 Nov, 2003 11:59 am
Antidisestablishmentarianism is the doctrine which holds that the established church is the bulwark of the state, and all efforts to end religious establishment are inherently wrong-headed.

It is very interesting that in the reign in which the established church finally acheived stability--that of Elizabeth--John Knox imported Calvinism. Just as the Episcopal Church began it's long spiritual reign, the seeds of dissent were sown, took root, and grew apace.

I think this is an example of how a thoughtless devotion to tradition will eventually lead to dissolution. The "virtues" of the class of Patres at Rome, from the middle of the eighth century BCE onward, were based upon the necessities of survival in the newly founded city, but were irrelevant within a generation or two. Nevertheless, Roman society attempted to cling to those personal and civic virtues down the long roll of years, despite the agrarian wars, which exposed the inherent injustice of the Senatorial system, despite the defection of members of that class, of which the Gracchi were the most notable example, despite the Sullan civil war, and despite the Caesarian/Pompeian civil war. By the time Iulius Caesar was assassinated, and his nephew and heir, Octavian had defeated the "regicides," and began the Augustan age, those traditions were a hollow show, which did not prevent their perpetuation on the sole basis of a claim of the value of tradition--something which my reading of history has never proven to me.

When Constantine established Byzantium as the second Rome, renaming it Constantinople, there was a "re-infusion" of Greek cultural values into the empire. My personal take is that this gave the eastern portion of the empire a renewed vigor, a raison d'être, if you will, which was lacking in the west. The administrative capital was moved to Ravenna, in itself an admission of the crumbling of authority in the west, as that city was pre-eminently defensible behind its ring of marshes. Rome was marginalized, so that the sack of that city in April, 410 CE, by Alaric and his Goths meant nothing to governance in the west, although it was a powerful symbol of the extent to which authority was crumbling in the west.

In Britain, this same adherence to tradition was noticeable in the attempt of the remnants of the Roman occupation to keep at least the imperial gloss on their lives. Records found at Hagia Sophia in Istanbul in the 1970's show that Theodosius II issued a warrant to one Arthur as dux bellorum Britanium (war duke of Britain). Arthur may well have fought to preserve the old villa society of Britain, but, absent such charismatic leadership, the ordinary Briton, although despising the Saxon, Angle and Jute, seems uninclined to fight to preserve the "old order."

And so it goes--Charles I, Charles II, James II and George III all attempted, in vain, to preserve monarchical authority. Wellington and Palmerston both sought to prevent electoral reform (the former futilely, the latter succeeded until his demise, in a case of aprés moi, le déluge). Foxes are still hunted, the Horse Guards still parade, the Lords still sit--but the rot has set in, in my opinion, incurably. But you'll have that when tradition has a higher value than pragmatism. I begin to see in our country, as well . . .
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Steve 41oo
 
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Reply Wed 5 Nov, 2003 07:46 am
thanks for that interesting analysis Setanta.

I wasn't being entirely serious about fox hunting. If we were really concerned about fox welfare we would have to fence off all the motorways.

The points I raised in the initial discussion were deliberately provocative. Perhaps Gautam is right, the monarchy is in practice irrelevant. [I don't happen to agree, I wish they would just go away, perferably where they are appreciated such as Texas or North Rhine Westphalia].

Where the British establishment has been very clever in the past is to have avoided revolution. We had a bit of bother with some colonies in 1776, and other places in the Empire, but nothing like 1789 in France or 1848 on the European Continent. [or 1917!]

The ruling elite has always been astute enough to understand just when it was prudent to give a bit. Thus Britain has evolved into a parliamentary democracy, but still retains many of the ceremonial trappings from a bygone age. Some find this very attractive, and I don't argue with studying and understanding our history and heritage. But there are some fundamental adjustments that need addressing in the 21st century. [and in fact are being incorporated in the UK as the EU consolidates]. For example I am a citizen of the EU, but a (dis)loyal subject of Queen Elizabeth, but also a loyal citizen of this country and Her Majesty as head of State. I want to have some say in who is our head of State.

I want to see a clear division between Church and State. I want the Conservative Party to go into voluntary liquidation. And I want bread and circuses.

In fact I think I will start the BBCP. (British Bread and Circus Party)
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Walter Hinteler
 
  1  
Reply Wed 5 Nov, 2003 08:08 am
Steve (as 41oo) wrote:
[I don't happen to agree, I wish they would just go away, perferably where they are appreciated such as Texas or North Rhine Westphalia].



Grrr! Battenberg is in Hessia!
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