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Referendum against the monarchy Watch

  • View Poll Results: Monarchy or republic
    Monarchy
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    57.02%
    Republic
    98
    42.98%

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      (Original post by gladders)
      I think France has the edge, though, in that most of the surviving royal buildings are pretty darn enormous and fantastic, so they stand in their own right as attractions - I can't see Buck House pulling crowds without it being the Queen's official residence!

      I really dislike how the 'anachronistic' argument (if you can call it an argument) is bandied about. You might as well call trial-by-jury anachronistic, as it's been around almost as long.
      Well, it's hard to know how far post-royal family tourism would play out specifically in the UK, but the example of France at least demonstrates the extent to which it is buildings, collections and fancy gardens (etc) that can draw people in the context of 'royal tourism'.

      The institution of royalty is anachronistic not because it is old, but because it no longer fits contemporary society and values. Long gone is the widespread acceptance that people should have power, privilege or status through birth and which the royal familiy are a supreme emblem of. We live in an era dominated by the ideology of liberalism and which claims to represent the idea that people can achieve through hard work and merit and where there is, at least putatively, some commitment to equality of opportunity. The monarchy flies in the face of these developments given that individuals gain status as kings, queens and princes (etc) simply because of who their parents were. Not only do they not have to compete for such status they don't really have to demonstrate their abilities; if they are poor at discharching their roles these are simply correspondingly lessened to avoid undue embarrassment. If the argument is that they have no 'real power' then there's no obvious justification for their presence, if they do have real power then it is not legitimate in a society which has embraced the idea that those who occupy positions of authority should come to them through democratic and/or meritocratic forces.
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        (Original post by Oswy)
        Well, it's hard to know how far post-royal family tourism would play out specifically in the UK, but the example of France at least demonstrates the extent to which it is buildings, collections and fancy gardens (etc) that can draw people in the context of 'royal tourism'.

        The institution of royalty is anachronistic not because it is old, but because it no longer fits contemporary society and values. Long gone is the widespread acceptance that people should have power, privilege or status through birth and which the royal familiy are a supreme emblem of. We live in an era dominated by the ideology of liberalism and which claims to represent the idea that people can achieve through hard work and merit and where there is, at least putatively, some commitment to equality of opportunity. The monarchy flies in the face of these developments given that individuals gain status as kings, queens and princes (etc) simply because of who their parents were. Not only do they not have to compete for such status they don't really have to demonstrate their abilities; if they are poor at discharching their roles these are simply correspondingly lessened to avoid undue embarrassment. If the argument is that they have no 'real power' then there's no obvious justification for their presence, if they do have real power then it is not legitimate in a society which has embraced the idea that those who occupy positions of authority should come to them through democratic and/or meritocratic forces.
        People still inherit things from their parents Oswy, not sure about you, but everyone still does. Ergo, society hasn't changed that much.
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        We have in my view the most stable constitution of any major power - to change what is probably the best balance between justice, stability , freedom and democracy any state has ever had is in my view foolish in the absence of any real imperative for change.

        The tourism argument on boh sides is fairly juvenile in my opinion, as that isn't the point of the monarchy or the issue at hand, but as I understand it, the bulk of royal revenue comes from their huge landholdings.

        The anti-monarchists' most convincing argument is that it is undemocratic to have a monarchy. In practice power has really rested in Parliament since the Civil War, and the role of the Head of State as a popular figurehead has been far better fulfilled by the monarchy than by an president, who is by definition of being elected, the choice of a part of the people and not of another part. We do not have a choice over who is monarch, and thus divisiveness is removed so long as the monarch is not a tyrant, something which is impossible in the UK.
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        (Original post by Oswy)
        The institution of royalty is anachronistic not because it is old, but because it no longer fits contemporary society and values. Long gone is the widespread acceptance that people should have power, privilege or status through birth and which the royal familiy are a supreme emblem of. We live in an era dominated by the ideology of liberalism and which claims to represent the idea that people can achieve through hard work and merit and where there is, at least putatively, some commitment to equality of opportunity. The monarchy flies in the face of these developments given that individuals gain status as kings, queens and princes (etc) simply because of who their parents were. Not only do they not have to compete for such status they don't really have to demonstrate their abilities; if they are poor at discharching their roles these are simply correspondingly lessened to avoid undue embarrassment. If the argument is that they have no 'real power' then there's no obvious justification for their presence, if they do have real power then it is not legitimate in a society which has embraced the idea that those who occupy positions of authority should come to them through democratic and/or meritocratic forces.
        I can see your point of view for me though, it's more than simply the issue of inheritance, it's the role the monarchy can play as a politically neutral constitutional umpire and national/historical symbol. Historically (contrary to the assumptions of many here), the monarchy was seen as a guarantor and symbol of British liberties; for me, the continual presence of the monarchy shows the ability of the British, by and large, to resolve major political disputes through peaceful discource, consensus, and fair play - there's been no need for violent overthrows, and the constitution is an inspiration for many countries worldwide.

        I welcome meritocracy as an aspiration, but then I would say that people seem to have infinitely more respect for the monarchy than they do for those who do seem to climb the greasy pole faster than others! Maybe it's just cynicism, but I think people can relate to the royals.

        I always liked this quote:

        A king is a king, not because he is rich and powerful, not because he is a successful politician, not because he belongs to a particular creed or to a national group. He is King because he is born. And in choosing to leave the selection of their head of state to this most common denominator in the world- the accident of birth- Canadians implicitly proclaim their faith in human equality; their hope for the triumph of nature over political manoeuvre, over social and financial interest; for the victory of the human person. - Jacques Monet
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        Money is not the issue here, its birthright thats the issue.
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        (Original post by DaveSmith99)
        Money is not the issue here, its birthright thats the issue.
        If we want to be consistent about the birthright issue, then, what gives you the right to be a British citizen?

        To be consistent, shouldn't we make it a requirement that everyone, born in and out of the UK, should apply for citizenship or be ejected from the country?
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        (Original post by gladders)
        If we want to be consistent about the birthright issue, then, what gives you the right to be a British citizen?

        To be consistent, shouldn't we make it a requirement that everyone, born in and out of the UK, should apply for citizenship or be ejected from the country?
        No we should not, neither should a position such as head of state be given because of nothing more than birthright.
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        Monarchy easily. For all their flaws I still like them more than any politician.
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        (Original post by DaveSmith99)
        No we should not, neither should a position such as head of state be given because of nothing more than birthright.
        So you're proposing that we make nationality not based on birthright. I can see THAT being a popular move.
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        (Original post by gladders)
        So you're proposing that we make nationality not based on birthright. I can see THAT being a popular move.
        Thats not what I am proposing at all :confused:
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        (Original post by DaveSmith99)
        Thats not what I am proposing at all :confused:
        Sorry if I misread your message then; could you restate? And why it inheritance okay for nationality but not for the Head of State?
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        The monarchy is embarrassing. All titles are nicknames and vice versa.

        Must we continue with this servile deference to a group of inbred imbeciles?

        Get rid of them.
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        (Original post by Cybele)
        Monarchy easily. For all their flaws I still like them more than any politician.

        That's probably because they do not do anything substantial. There is nothing to blame them for. They are simply an indulgent irellevence for easily pleased simpletons.
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        Refer to a thread in which I posted entitled 'Royals', for arguments to keep the monarchy. They're more useful to this country than you are.
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        (Original post by karateworm)
        I'm a lefty liberal, and I will always back the Monarchy. The Queen is a credit to the country, to the British people and to the throne.
        Isn't that rather contradictive?

        You're saying you're a liberalist yet you follow conservative(to preserve tradition/history and culture) beliefs.
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        I think it's worth noting that the monarchy in the UK and the monarchy full stop are two different things. That is to say, if I were designing a perfect, new country, would I choose a monarchy? No. If I were given the final power to create a republic in the UK, would I? No. It would have monumental effects on our constitution, which is an organic being that has gradually changed through the millennia and is based on centuries of previous experience. If we were to get rid of the monarchy now, it would almost certainly require a codification of the constitution and, given the constantly and unswerving erosion of our liberties, I don't trust any politicians right now to actually make a decent one, and then stick to it.

        On more practical grounds, I don't care about tourism - a head of state shouldn't be chosen based upon their tourism draw. But at the same time, even if we ignore that, the monarchy is (as a figurehead with no real power) significantly cheaper than most other, non-regal heads of state around the world, AND all the proceeds from the Crown Estates go into the treasury. And that's not public property, that's the property of the royal family, and would remain so whether they were still the royal family or simple a family. So, even without tourism, they still contribute more to the countries funding than they cost, which just about any other system of head of state wouldn't.

        And finally, the monarch is a fantastic diplomat. Certainly, they shouldn't be the only one, but many leaders on foreign state visits to the UK are humbled by an appointment with the Queen, simply because she's spoken to basically everyone. She's met weekly with every UK prime minister since Churchill, she's met Presidents, Emperors and Sheiks, as well as travelling the length and breadth of the world. This is more the case with Elizabeth II than "the monarchy" generally, but it demonstrates some of the great power of having a person in a position like this for life, who isn't accountable every four years for their actions and the temporary political mumblings of the people - a monarch has many of the benefits of an unelected house of Lords; Namely, that's it's far more difficult to corrupt those who don't face elections and have lots of money than it is if neither of those conditions are true. And in a game (politics), where corruption can genuinely result in absolute deprivation and pain for millions, I'm happy to have a head of state who really can't be corrupted even if it's not strictly "fair".

        Again, this is mostly all just the case for the UK. Most of the pros I've mentioned above wouldn't be the case for a brand new country I was inventing, so it's not really an ideological attachment I have to the monarchy, more pragmatic.
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        (Original post by Aeolus)
        That's probably because they do not do anything substantial. There is nothing to blame them for. They are simply an indulgent irellevence for easily pleased simpletons.
        Well aren't you lovely. Jog on.
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        (Original post by Cybele)
        Well aren't you lovely. Jog on.

        An excellent use of a humourous colloquialism. How charming
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        (Original post by Stratos)
        Isn't that rather contradictive?

        You're saying you're a liberalist yet you follow conservative(to preserve tradition/history and culture) beliefs.
        The point I was making, is that you don't have to be a Telegraph reading Tory to appreciate the value of tradition and heritage, and the good the monarchy brings to the country.

        Political beliefs aren't meant to be God given scriptures, there's nothing contradictory about believing in social change, yet believing there is a lot of good to be had in tradition. You can have both!
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        (Original post by Aeolus)
        That's probably because they do not do anything substantial. There is nothing to blame them for. They are simply an indulgent irellevence for easily pleased simpletons.
        Why must you resort to personal insults? Are you that insecure about your position that you can only throw invectives?
       
       
       
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