What else would you expect from royalty?


For some reason, this Oglaf cartoon seems particularly appropriate today.

Maybe an institution built around the notion of an intrinsic inherited superiority, which raises its members in a warm bath of entitlement and privilege, isn’t the best structure for producing an enlightened leadership? We should expect the products of such an upbringing to be, naturally, self-serving bigots?

I don’t know why that came to mind today.

(By the way, that Oglaf cartoon is a two-parter, but page 2 culminates in someone getting a good consensual pegging, as Oglafian humor tends to do.)

Comments

  1. davidc1 says

    It was behind a paywall ,or something .But i would hazard a guess phil the Greek was the royal who was concerned about
    how dark the royal sprog was likely to be ,if that’s what the story was about .
    Deeply unpleasant person ,the world’s longest living drone .

  2. birgerjohansson says

    And the guy who cheated on his wife -you know, the guy with the big ears- is not answering the phone when the wrong son calls.
    But the rapey prince is still part of la familia.

  3. says

    Yeah, I immediately assumed it was the old codger, but then I reconsidered: the whole royal family is a collection of antiquated relics with brains at least a hundred years behind the times, so it could be any of them. Or all of them.

  4. nomaduk says

    a collection of antiquated relics with brains at least a hundred years behind the times

    You’ve just described a significant portion of the US Congress. Not sure that’s a significant improvement over an obnoxious but otherwise harmless geezer who happens to be married to the head of state, neither of whom have any significant power.

  5. nomaduk says

    Used the word ‘significant’ three times in two sentences. Ick. Poor proofreading.

  6. euclide says

    Methods to choose a leader :
    1) early monarchy/failed states : selecting for people good at being a warlord
    2) advanced monarchy : selecting for people good at not being assassinated
    3) late stage monarchy : selecting for people good at being born (but at this point, they tend to have no power at all)
    4) liberal democracy : selecting for people good at being elected
    5) US democracy : selecting for people good at raising money from the 1%
    6) iliberal democracy : selecting for people good at subverting the democratic process

    Is there a way to select for people good at governing ?

  7. says

    euclide @8
    I’ve always thought that a random drawing for membership in the governing body/ies would be no worse than any of your list.
    It’d be like jury service: you’d be called, and if you didn’t have a good excuse you’d have to appear for a year or so.
    It has the decided advantage of tending to be filled with representatives who statistically represent the community: same proportions of rich and poor; men and women; gay and straight; black and white; clever and stupid; honest and criminal as that community.

  8. euclide says

    @richardelguru

    For the legislative part, I tend to agree, but there’s always the matter of the executive, where decision by committee is kinda bad, which means you tend to need an actual bright person at the top to make decisions when there’s a crisis.

    The recent experience with the USA is a good illustration of what a random guy with no experience at the top executive position can do.
    It is passable when everything is fine, like the 2017 – 2019 period but then, when you have a real crisis, lack of leadership and governing experience has consequences.

  9. Rob Grigjanis says

    Marcus @5: If Feynman said that, I’d like to see a reference. I have seen the following ascribed to Thomas Paine;

    “A hereditary monarch is as absurd a position as a hereditary doctor or mathematician”

    but I’m not even sure of that.

  10. ajbjasus says

    #3. Maybe this will flush out who Harry’s real dad is?

    A massive insight into the royal mindset was when airmiles Andy pulled that “My problem is that I’m too honourable” bullshit in the Epstein interview.

    I’m horrified, but not surprised if Meghan was badly treated, especially if there was racism.

    I also note that before telling us what a rotten set up this was, these two were quite happy to try and cash in on the royal connection – Sussex royal and all that.

    Given my views on Royalty I’d have not wanted to have anything to do with the lot of them.

  11. raven says

    I also note that before telling us what a rotten set up this was, these two were quite happy to try and cash in on the royal connection – Sussex royal and all that.

    What else could they do?
    What are they trained for?

    At least Meghan Markle had a real job and career before becoming the Duchess of Sussex. She was an actress with some success.

  12. ajbjasus says

    Well, Harry has had the benefit of a very expensive education, and lots of military training. That generally suffices for most people, and Meghan, as you say is a successful actress. Both will have amazing networks, which also goes a long way.

    Or did you mean, what could they do to continue living a multimillion pound lifestyle?

  13. Pierce R. Butler says

    raven @ # 13: What else could they do?

    Even if they had the skills for any constructive paying occupation, wherever they found employment would soon be overrun with gawking tourists, so that even the commoners working there could get nothing done.

    Maybe a carnival sideshow could use them, on display between the bearded lady and the two-headed goat.

  14. davidc1 says

    It might not be the old codger after all .The most likely one is now princess Michael of Kent ,she is a blonde German ,and we all know what that means ,don’t we.

  15. DrVanNostrand says

    Pierce @15

    I’m fairly certain Meghan could still work as an actress. In LA, I seriously doubt she draws more attention than someone like Beyonce.

  16. says

    @ajbjasus you seem to be confused. That Prince Charles fellow is Harry’s dad. Stick some young pictures of nasty old Prince Phillip next to Harry and it’s not hard to see the similarities.

  17. ajbjasus says

    #19

    Equally persuasive if you do the same with Jimmy H.

    I wonder what the bombshell Paul Burrell was about to come out with before he eas persuaded to shut up.

  18. ajbjasus says

    Dammit, the media and royals have done it again. I’d rather never hear anything about any of them and their hangers on again, and here I am, posting messages on a chat board.

    Sorry …..

  19. PaulBC says

    Off topic. (Shocking, huh?)

    That fairy looks sort of familiar. First I was thinking Double Trouble from the She-Ra reboot. But I checked and the coloring is wrong. Double Trouble is green. There is still something very She-Ra about the drawing style. In a distant second, I have Aaravos from The Dragon Prince. At least the purply colors are right. Never mind, I suppose there are a limited number of ways to draw fairy folk, and the pointy ears are de rigueur.

    Before you ask, I was watching these shows with my daughter. But, uh, OK. They’re both very good. It took a little while for me to be persuaded, but She-Ra exceeded all expectations, especially how the tables were turned on Hordak later in the series. His discovery that he was a defective clone of Horde Prime was a plot development worthy of Philip K. Dick in its poignancy.

  20. John Morales says

    PaulBC, <snicker>

    I’m pretty sure you haven’t read Oglaf, and that you wouldn’t have watched it with your daughter if you had.

    (Do check it out, start at the beginning)

  21. PaulBC says

    JM@25 Ah, OK. Well, no it’s not something I’d read with her. She’s 15. But she might be more blasé about it than I am. PZ’s selection is pretty tame though.

  22. PaulBC says

    Wikipedia article on Oglaf:

    The comic takes place in a fantasy realm; a reviewer for ComicsAlliance described it as “a world created by shoving every existing fantasy world into a blender and setting it on puree.”[1]

    So it’s not completely off base that I would be finding similarities. Given that the She-Ra reboot was made later, any influence between works would be in the reverse direction, and there could be some, who knows. She-Ra is sexually tame but “magically queer” nonetheless. I really did find myself liking it a lot more than I had originally anticipated.

  23. robro says

    Of course, that old Greek lover of war horses is not very Greek. The all-important family line is Danish and German. Greece was more a present. His mother was a granddaughter of Queen Victoria. His father’s family goes back to George II of Great Britain. Near incestuousness of the royal line has assured a certain consistency of characters. Never let it be said that the royal gene pool strays far from the tree.

  24. says

    Rob Grigjanis@#11:
    If Feynman said that, I’d like to see a reference. I have seen the following ascribed to Thomas Paine;

    I’ve read pretty much everything Feynman wrote (except I didn’t understand the lectures on physics other than the orbital dynamics using geometry) and have maybe 100 hours of audio lectures and meanderings, as well as some of the rare videos from his talks at Esalen. I’ve read the published selections of his letters, the Challenger report, and most of his other public speeches (Nobel Prize, etc) My memory’s not what it used to be and I’m not going to trawl through all of that to find a reference for you. Maybe you should just chalk it up as “probably mis-attributed to Richard Feynman” I’m OK with you thinking I got it wrong, if the cost for me to be right is days of my time.

  25. says

    @#6, nomaduk

    Not sure that’s a significant improvement over an obnoxious but otherwise harmless geezer who happens to be married to the head of state, neither of whom have any significant power.

    You must not be paying much attention. The UK press was just outraged to discover (as anti-monarchists over there have pointed out for years) that the Queen can ask for legislation to be killed before it even gets to Parliament, and she has done so with something like 90 different bills over time, including at least some which might have touched on her 88 billion pound fortune which is largely kept in tax-free offshore accounts — the British Royal Family was heavily implicated in the Paradise Papers. (Then, of course, there’s the fact that she gets to sit down and have a private talk about politics with the Prime Minister, no matter who it may be, on a regular basis. Even if she were a total nobody, that would make her extremely influential. If every sitting President were required to spend an hour chatting with you once a week you’d be considered one of the most powerful people in the country.)

    The idea that the English monarchy is effectively powerless is very useful to the English monarchy.

  26. KG says

    For once The Vicar@30 has it more or less right: the Queen has considerable power. Here is a relevant Guardian article. And while if she refused assent to legislation passed by Parliament a constituional crisis would ensue, she could threaten to do it, or to abdicate, either of which would be likely to scare the Government off whatever it was contemplating. Two quibbles:
    1) I don’t know where the £88bn figure comes from. A recent study came up with a figure of £67.5bn, but only by counting all the assets like the crown jewels and Buckingham Palace – which it’s not clear the Windsors would retain in the event of even the peaceful abolition of the monarchy, and which they can hardly sell while it continues; and adding in the supposed value of their “brand” to the UK. As with any sufficiently rich person, but perhaps even more so, even approximate figures are difficult to calculate.
    2) It’s not formally the “English monarchy”, unless it’s also the “Nether Wallop monarchy”. England, like the village of Nether Wallop in Hampshire, is part of “The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland”, of which Elizabeth Windsor is the monarch. The last person to bear the title of Queen (or King) of England was Anne Stuart, who was on the throne when the kingdoms of England and Scotland were subsumed into the Kingdom of Great Britain in 1707 (Ireland came in later, then most of it escaped). Admittedly, England is by far the dominant component of the UK, and the fact that Elizabeth Windsor is called “Elizabeth II” when Elizabeth I was not the monarch of Scotland suggests that they trace their history primarily to the English monarchy, but they are also very fond of dressing up as pantomime Scots, vacationing on their extensive Scottish estates, and shooting Scottish wildlife.

  27. F.O. says

    @euclide

    Is there a way to select for people good at governing ?

    Probably not, but you can side-step the problem and get rid of rulers entirely, decentralizing your government, like the Zapatistas have done in Chiapas and the Democratic Communalists have done in the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (aka Rojava).

    I wonder if Westerners don’t take them seriously because they’re not white, but then again we all know that Western Democracies must be the height of social achievement. /s

  28. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    I am so out of touch with being an Anglophile. I thought their opposition to Meghan was being American, with biracial being highlighted only in the tabloids.Apparently biracial turned out to be quite an issue with the royals, over the American heritage.I am shocked, I always had the impression Britain had left racial profiling far behind which have clung onto disgustingly. I know nothing

  29. slithey tove (twas brillig (stevem)) says

    re@35:
    last line is: ..which we have clung onto, disgustingly. the embolded was dropped accidentally

  30. davidc1 says

    @33 Eddies 7’s wife was Danish .@35 You are thinking of Wallis Simpson .I have often wondered if George Vee had held on to say 1941 ,and then died ,how would the American people react to the hostility Simpson met with ,would they have said to themselves ,these limeys want us to help fight the Germans ,but they turn their noses up at the thought of one of our Americans gals being Queen of England .
    OT ,anyone tell me why my spell checker isn’t working ,all the on’s in settings are ,on
    PS ,i did hear that Eddie 8 ,was a bit lacking in the trouser dept ,so Wallis had an op on her lady bits ,to help
    him out ,for which he was internally grateful .

  31. Rob Grigjanis says

    Marcus @29:

    I’m OK with you thinking I got it wrong

    I don’t think like that. It goes into my “I don’t know” box. The biggest box I have.

  32. says

    @#31, KG
    I’m usually more or less right when I post on here. Otherwise we wouldn’t be trying to gin up yet another war in the mideast right now.

    #1 is the figure I’ve seen quoted repeated by actual Brits. And #2 is an absolutely ridiculous quibble, the equivalent of gun nuts who complain because one of the guns held by the latest school shooter was misidentified by the press.

  33. KG says

    The Vicar@39,
    No, you’re usually dead wrong. And maybe you could quote anyone who comments here claiming that Biden would depart from standard US foreign policy in the Middle East. That’s not why most of us preferred him to Trump.

    #1 Where? Let’s have an actual source.
    #2 No, it’s not ridiculous to object to England being equated with the UK, because the two are not the same geographically, historically, politically, constitutionally, or in any other way. Doing so is, I know, a very common piece of sloppiness among Americans, but that doesn’t make it any less inaccurate. I wish Elizabeth Windsor was not monarch of Scotland, but the fact is, she is.

  34. Rob Grigjanis says

    The Vicar @30:

    her 88 billion pound fortune which is largely kept in tax-free offshore accounts

    If you’re getting the 88 billion from Forbes, that’s in dollars, not pounds, and it’s not her fortune. It’s the estimated net worth of the family, most of which is counted as added value to tourism, etc.

    As far as the Paradise Papers, I can only see millions, not billions.

  35. KG says

    F.O.@32,

    Well, that’s the theory. Whether saying or even sincerely believing you’ve got rid of rulers entirely actually means you’ve done so is another matter. We have tended to hear rather more from “Subcommandante” Marcos than from the average resident of the Zapatista-run areas, and the book Revolution in Rojava (Knapp, Flach and Ayboga 2016) suggests to me that the situation there is not quite as straightforward as you say. Which is not to deny that both are very interesting and worthwhile experiments.

  36. PaulBC says

    Constitutional monarchies are just weird. But even weirder is the extent to which Americans care about British royals. Meghan and Harry seem like a nice enough couple. I just hope they can extricate themselves from that family.

    (I didn’t watch the interview and wouldn’t notice at all except it keeps popping up on various news feeds I look at.)

    slithey tove@25

    I thought their opposition to Meghan was being American, with biracial being highlighted only in the tabloids.Apparently biracial turned out to be quite an issue with the royals, over the American heritage.

    Really? Prince Philip has said some amazing things over the years.

    While I don’t know if the royal family arranged the car crash of Diana and Dodi Fayed, I bet at least some of them were sleeping easier afterwards. (And there I go, and no I really don’t care about them at all, but they stay on my radar like other pop trends. I definitely do not gush over them.)

  37. Owlmirror says

    @Marcus Ranum: “hereditary physics” is such an odd word combination that it should be easy to web search for it. It looks like you’re the only one who has said that Feynman said it. Interestingly, you’ve phrased the epigram in different ways over the years:

    Above:
    2021-03-08: “Hereditary leadership makes as much sense as hereditary physics.”

    2019-12-01: “hereditary aristocracy makes as much sense as hereditary physics

    2017-06-08: “hereditary rule makes as much sense as hereditary physics”

    It occurred to me that “hereditary physics” doesn’t actually make sense — isn’t the point that the role is held by a person; a physicist? And searching on “hereditary physicist” finds … more hits from you!

    2016-12-01: “heritable political power makes as much sense as being a hereditary physicist.”

    2014-12-11: “Hereditary aristocracy makes as much sense as being a hereditary physicist.” (Mano’s blog, but your comment)

    However, unless Dave Gamble is a pseudonym of yours, you are not the only one to think that Feynman said it (or, wait, maybe you picked it up from him — and he confabulated it?)

    2013-07-24: “as Feynman once observed, having a hereditary leader makes as much sense as having a hereditary physicist.”

    I mean, it does sound like something Feynman would have said. But I suspect that if he had used the phrase “hereditary physicist”, someone besides you (and Gamble) would have published the quote and citation. It’s pithy!

  38. KG says

    While I don’t know if the royal family arranged the car crash of Diana and Dodi Fayed – PaulBC@43

    It’s about as plausible as the claim that Hillary Clinton had Seth Rich killed, and for the same reason: such things require a number of conspirators, and as the saying goes, three people can keep a secret if two of them are dead.

    The real Windsor scandal at present is the stench surrounding Andrew (not just the Epstein connection, but the corrupt arms deals), and the way the Palace is trying to prevent any more of the truth coming out.

  39. Rob Grigjanis says

    Owlmirror @44:

    I mean, it does sound like something Feynman would have said

    Not to me, which is largely why I questioned the quote (that, and not being able to find it among his many quotes, and the supposed Tom Paine quote which is almost identical*). My impression is that he didn’t care much about politics.

    On the other hand, he loved the sound of his own voice, and used it a lot. It’s possible he said something like that in one of his many, many recorded conversations.

    *It would be easier to believe that Paine said it, since it jibes with his known opinions.

  40. PaulBC says

    KG@45 You’re probably right in this case. Another conspiracy theory I leave indeterminate is Sen. Paul Wellstone’s 2002 plane crash. Yes, there are many reasons for small planes to crash in bad weather, and I have no evidence to suggest anything beyond an accident*, but he died at a time when he was a nuisance to some very powerful people (though unlikely to stop the march to the Iraq war). I don’t have to adjudicate either question. I can leave them unanswered.

    Plus, is it really true that no group of people can keep a secret? I don’t think there has been a definitive confession on what happened to Jimmy Hoffa, though it’s assumed quite reasonably that he was murdered. Can’t the British royal family keep a secret as well as the mafia? (But Wellstone, well, yeah if it involved Bush, Cheney, or Karl Rove, I suppose something would have leaked.)

    *NTSB also ruled it an accident, but “the flight crew’s failure to maintain adequate airspeed” is the sort of thing that could be arranged.

  41. KG says

    PaulBC@47,

    Well, the saying is probably hyperbolic, but it’s unlikely Philip went over to Paris and tampered with the brakes himself! The royals would have had to recruit someone for the “wet work”, and they wouldn’t have done that themselves either – they’d need a couple of cut-outs and however it was done, someone other than a member of the family would have had to know. In any case, if Diana had married Dodi, it would have damaged her mystique – probably as good as or even better than offing her from the Windsors’ point of view.

  42. PaulBC says

    KG@48

    unlikely Philip went over to Paris and tampered with the brakes himself

    That’s something I’d pay to see. And he was just 76 at the time if I’ve done the arithmetic right. If he was keeping himself in shape he could have crawled under the car when no one was looking.

  43. Owlmirror says

    @Rob Grigjanis:

    [The epigram about heredity doesn’t sound like Feynman] to me, which is largely why I questioned the quote […]. My impression is that he didn’t care much about politics.

    Wikiquote:Richard Feynman does have a couple of paragraphs about politicians, but it’s about being elected rather than a monarchy.

    [Tom Paine said something like it]
    However, per Wikiquote:Tom Paine, he actually had several quotes about heredity. Citations from “Common Sense” and “Rights of Man”.

    Common Sense:

    When we are planning for posterity, we ought to remember that virtue is not hereditary.
    […]
    Hereditary succession has no claim. For all men being originally equals, no one by birth could have the right to set up his own family in perpetual preference to all others for ever, and tho’ himself might deserve some decent degree of honours of his contemporaries, yet his descendants might be far too unworthy to inherit them.

    Rights of Man:

    The idea of hereditary legislators is as inconsistent as that of hereditary judges, or hereditary juries; and as absurd as an hereditary mathematician, or an hereditary wise man; and as ridiculous as an hereditary poet-laureat.

    So, good call. It’s plausible that either someone confused Feynman with Paine, or Feynman paraphrased Paine in an anecdote about royalty.

  44. consciousness razor says

    The Irish Times:

    Having a monarchy next door is a little like having a neighbour who’s really into clowns and has daubed their house with clown murals, displays clown dolls in each window and has an insatiable desire to hear about and discuss clown-related news stories. More specifically, for the Irish, it’s like having a neighbour who’s really into clowns and, also, your grandfather was murdered by a clown.

    Beyond this, it’s the stuff of children’s stories. Having a queen as head of state is like having a pirate or a mermaid or Ewok as head of state. What’s the logic? Bees have queens, but the queen bee lays all of the eggs in the hive. The queen of the Britons has laid just four British eggs, and one of those is the sweatless creep Prince Andrew, so it’s hardly deserving of applause.

    The contemporary royals have no real power. They serve entirely to enshrine classism in the British nonconstitution. They live in high luxury and low autonomy, cosplaying as their ancestors, and are the subject of constant psychosocial projection from people mourning the loss of empire. They’re basically a Rorschach test that the tabloids hold up in order to gauge what level of hysterical batshittery their readers are capable of at any moment in time.

    Other than the silly “no real power” claim which was immediately contradicted, they nailed it.

    KG, #31:

    It’s not formally the “English monarchy”, unless it’s also the “Nether Wallop monarchy”. England, like the village of Nether Wallop in Hampshire, is part of “The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland”, of which Elizabeth Windsor is the monarch.

    If we’re going to nitpick: not only the UK but also the other commonwealth realms.

  45. KG says

    consciousness razor@51,

    Nicely missed point there, cr. “Queen of England” is not one of Elizabeth Windsor’s array of titles, and referring to “the English monarchy” erases the politically important difference between England and the UK. You might just possibly have noticed a certain amount of brouhaha about the status of Northern Ireland and the independence movements in Scotland and even Wales, all stimulated by Brexit.

  46. John Morales says

    KG:

    “Queen of England” is not one of Elizabeth Windsor’s array of titles

    But you don’t deny she is the Queen of England, right?

    As to formal titles, it’s kinda modest compared to some. And amusing, to me.
    “In the United Kingdom, the Queen is officially titled ‘Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith’, with the style of ‘Majesty’.”
    (https://royalcentral.co.uk/uk/queen/the-many-titles-of-queen-elizabeth-ii-87125/)

  47. mvdwege says

    KG@49 and PaulBC@48

    Now, interestingly, the one person in the current royal family with training as a mechanic is…Queen Elizabeth II

    (She served in the Auxiliary Territorial Service, the women’s branch of the British Army. As a driver/mechanic)

  48. Rob Grigjanis says

    John @53: You could also say she’s the Queen of John Morales’ backyard, if you have a backyard. But neither England nor your backyard are monarchies. The UK and Australia are.

  49. davidc1 says

    @45 The fact that the French driver was pissed up might have had something to do with it ,plus they were not wearing
    their seat belts ,apart from the bodyguard ,that’s why he survived .
    I think she was only paling around with dodi to piss off the firm .

  50. John Morales says

    Rob, if you want to believe she’s not the Queen of England, I can’t stop you.

  51. Rob Grigjanis says

    John, the last Queen of England was Queen Anne. On May 1 1707, she became Queen of Great Britain. I’m sure you’ll be able to grasp the concept if you apply yourself assiduously.

    Or you can simply choose to use terms in whatever haphazard way pleases you.

  52. John Morales says

    Rob:

    I’m sure you’ll be able to grasp the concept if you apply yourself assiduously.

    Heh. It’s not part of her official title, which I quoted in full above, but it is the actual reality. England does indeed have a Queen, and she is it.

    Or you can simply choose to use terms in whatever haphazard way pleases you.

    All titles are terms, but not all terms are titles.

  53. PaulBC says

    Or you can simply choose to use terms in whatever haphazard way pleases you.

    It was good enough for Emperor Norton, and he has the nearest geographic claim to me. I’ll take the House of Haphazard over the House of Habsburg any day.

  54. Rob Grigjanis says

    OK, Liz Windsor is Queen of New South Wales, and Felipe VI is King of Castile and León. New South Wales does indeed have a Queen, etc.

  55. PaulBC says

    Serious (and very naive) question. Is there a difference in status between Australia and Canada? I note that Queen Elizabeth sometimes appears on Canadian currency. I would have to look up Australian money to make any comparison.

  56. Rob Grigjanis says

    PaulBC @63: They’re both federal parliamentary constitutional monarchies, and Commonwealth realms. I think the Aussies stopped putting Liz on their coins some time ago. Barbarians.

  57. Lofty says

    (Checks coin purse) Nope, Our Lizzie still graces the backside of Oz coins. A little saggy around the jowls now though, not as svelte as she was when metric money was introduced here back in 1966.

  58. John Morales says

    Rob,

    I think the Aussies stopped putting Liz on their coins some time ago.

    Nope. https://www.ramint.gov.au/circulating-coins

    OK, Liz Windsor is Queen of New South Wales, and Felipe VI is King of Castile and León. New South Wales does indeed have a Queen, etc.

    Unlike all of your examples, England is a country.

  59. Tethys says

    Um, should I mention the Queen is somehow the Duke of Normandy? As an American the entire tradition of hereditary monarchy is just that, a quaint relic of colonial history.

  60. Rob Grigjanis says

    Tethys @70: That’s by virtue of the Channel Islands being the last remnant of the old Duchy still under her rule.

  61. Rob Grigjanis says

    John,

    Kingdom: a realm having a king and/or queen as its actual or nominal sovereign.

    Yes, Australia is a kingdom. That many Aussies might not like that is utterly irrelevant.

  62. John Morales says

    Heh heh heh. Gotta love these silly word-games.

    “Australia, officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a sovereign country comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands.” (Wikipedia)

    Now, if Liz ain’t the Queen of England because it’s not in her formal title, then likewise Oz ain’t a kingdom, however it functions, because that’s not in its formal title, either.

  63. says

    More:

    Australian constitutional law provides that the monarch of the United Kingdom is also the monarch in Australia.[7] This is understood today to constitute a separate Australian monarchy, the monarch acting with regard to Australian affairs exclusively upon the advice of Australian ministers. Australia is thus one of the Commonwealth realms, sixteen independent countries that share the same person as monarch and head of state.

  64. John Morales says

    Let’s remember, this all came about because KG objected to the term “Queen of England”.

    (A rather fruitful discussion so far, no?)

  65. Rob Grigjanis says

    Yes, damn KG and his annoying adherence to correct terminology.

    ‘Fruitful’ is subjective. I’ve had fun. Snicker.

  66. John Morales says

    Rob, who do you imagine claimed Australia is not a monarchy?

    Of course it is, it’s just not in its official title; the very same thing as Liz being QoE even though it’s not in her official title.

    You entirely missed the distinction between a title and a description, didn’t you?
    It was only my very point to KG, who (probably wisely) has held back from the silliness.

    And every time you try to repudiate my claim (“Yes, Australia is a kingdom.”), you endorse my claim (Liz is QoE) by using exactly the same reasoning.

    Still, glad you’ve had fun. Welcome to my world.

    ‘Fruitful’ is subjective.

    It was sarcasm, actually.

  67. Rob Grigjanis says

    And every time you try to repudiate my claim (“Yes, Australia is a kingdom.”), you endorse my claim (Liz is QoE) by using exactly the same reasoning.

    John automatically wins every argument, by hook or by crook. Yes, I know.

    It was sarcasm, actually.

    Yes, I know.

  68. says

    John, first, stop ignoring my comments; second, just acknowledge that you were wrong.

    Australia is a kingdom and Queen of Australia is among her formal titles.

    England isn’t a kingdom and Queen of England isn’t among her formal titles.

    The WP entry I linked to @ #76 and Rob @ #79 (“Monarchy of Australia”) literally says “Australian constitutional law provides that the monarch of the United Kingdom is also the monarch in Australia.”

  69. Rob Grigjanis says

    SC @84:

    just acknowledge that you were wrong

    I think that’s one of those things that could rupture the fabric of spacetime.

  70. John Morales says

    SC,

    John, first, stop ignoring my comments; second, just acknowledge that you were wrong.

    First, I’m not particularly ignoring you; but I do try not to spam comments.
    Not that it stops people from thinking I monopolise threads.
    Second, what do you think I got wrong? Do you dispute that Liz is QoE, even if it’s not part of her formal title?
    But fine, if you care to quote the specific claim I’ve made that you think I should concede is wrong, I’ll directly address it.

    Australia is a kingdom and Queen of Australia is among her formal titles.

    Australia is a Commonwealth Realm and Queen of Australia is her title in Australia, but not elsewhere.

    cf. https://www.royal.uk/australia

    “The Queen’s Royal style and title in Australia is Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God Queen of Australia and Her other Realms and Territories, Head of the Commonwealth.
    [I quoted the UK variant @53]

    […]

    When The Queen visits Australia, she speaks and acts as Queen of Australia, and not as Queen of the United Kingdom.”

    So she is the Queen of the UK, and she is the Queen of Oz, but she is not the Queen of (UK & Oz). Separate roles.

    England isn’t a kingdom and Queen of England isn’t among her formal titles.

    England is a country which is part of the United Kingdom, which is indeed a kingdom and not a Commonwealth Realm.

    Also, be aware that it was to Rob @68 to which I addressed my #71, by way of parallel reasoning to show the speciousness of the original claim that, because it’s not part of her formal title, she shouldn’t be referred to as QoE.

    The WP entry I linked to @ #76 and Rob @ #79 (“Monarchy of Australia”) literally says “Australian constitutional law provides that the monarch of the United Kingdom is also the monarch in Australia.”

    Not something I’ve disputed. Point being, her style in Oz is not the same as her style in the UK. Separate realms.

    (Love the term ‘style’, BTW)

  71. says

    Willfully obtuse.

    So she is the Queen of the UK, and she is the Queen of [Australia],…

    Yes, these are among her formal titles. Not among her formal titles: Queen of England, Queen of Tasmania.

    Joe Biden is the President of the United States.

    “But you don’t deny he is the President of Oregon, right?” Asshat.

  72. John Morales says

    SC,

    Not among her formal titles: Queen of England, Queen of Tasmania.

    Well, no. But England is a country, Tasmania is a state within a country.

    Not really comparable.

    (And, not to ignore Tethys @70, she is also a Duke!)

    Queen of Australia is her title in Australia, but not elsewhere.

    WTF is this even supposed to mean?

    I had thought I’d made it sufficiently clear already.
    It means that, in the UK, she is titled (as I’ve already quoted):
    “Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith”
    whereas in Australia, she is titled (as I’ve already quoted):
    “Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God Queen of Australia and Her other Realms and Territories, Head of the Commonwealth”

    IOW, her titles change based on whether she is being addressed as the Queen of the UK or as the Queen of Australia.

    (Hey, don’t blame me! I didn’t make those rules)

  73. says

    Not sure what part of “Each realm functions as an independent co-equal kingdom from the other realms” or “Queen of Australia” is so hard to fathom…

    I suspect if you had come into this trolling someone arguing against KG rather than KG, John, you wouldn’t be having such a hard time grasping this. Reflexive contrarianism is no friend to intellectual honesty.

  74. John Morales says

    Oh, to further not ignore you, SC:

    Joe Biden is the President of the United States.

    “But you don’t deny he is the President of Oregon, right?” Asshat.

    Again, not comparable. Oregon is not a country.

    If you don’t believe me, search the internet for “Queen of England” and for “President of Oregon”, and see how the results differ.

    In passing, I note you’ve so far eschewed the opportunity to quote whatever claim it was you imagined was wrong, so that I should acknowledge that wrongness.

  75. John Morales says

    SC:

    Not sure what part of “Each realm functions as an independent co-equal kingdom from the other realms” or “Queen of Australia” is so hard to fathom…

    I concur. So, do you dispute Liz functions as the Queen of England, and that whenever anyone anywhere refers to the Queen of England, she is to whom they refer?

    I suspect if you had come into this trolling someone arguing against KG rather than KG, John, you wouldn’t be having such a hard time grasping this. Reflexive contrarianism is no friend to intellectual honesty.

    Trolling, eh? Reflexive contrarianism, eh?

    (Exactly what you’re not doing right now, right?)

    Anyway, I argue the point, not the person, and I’m hardly having any difficulty grasping the subject at hand.

  76. says

    Well, no. But England is a country, Tasmania is a state within a country.

    Not really comparable.

    They’re completely comparable subunits within the relevant political units (like US states – or regions or cities or neighborhoods – wrt the presidency). It isn’t Tasmania’s relation to the country of Australia that’s relevant here, but its relation to the realm/kingdom of Australia.

    António Guterres is the Secretary-General of the United Nations, and it would be odd and confusing to call him the Secretary-General of Portugal. There’s no magical quality of any type of unit that gives it precedence in all contexts. (If I knew anything about video games I’m sure I could offer an example from there. It’s immaterial how silly or arbitrary anyone considers the system or the units; that’s separate from how they’re formally defined in the context at issue. St. Bona of Pisa is regarded as the patron saint of Pisa regardless of what anyone thinks of patron saints.)

    I had thought I’d made it sufficiently clear already….

    None of this is pertinent.

    IOW, her titles change based on whether she is being addressed as the Queen of the UK or as the Queen of Australia.

    Again, this has no bearing on the question at hand, but, again, “Queen of the UK” and “Queen of Australia” are the relevant titles here.

  77. PaulBC says

    As far as I’m concerned, a lot of people call Elizabeth “Queen of England.” I suspect you could even find this in academic writing as well as reputable journalism, but I haven’t looked. It seems totally fine to me. The rest is inside baseball.

    However, it’s amusing if John Morales in particular plans to argue from informal usage.

  78. Rob Grigjanis says

    Catalonia is a nationality. Quebec is a nation and a province. Wales, England and Scotland are countries. None of them are kingdoms. Why are you hung up on the word ‘country’?

    Search the internet for “the earth is flat” and “the earth is not flat” and see how the results differ.

  79. PaulBC says

    I am still digesting (CR@51), “a clown murdered my grandfather.” Murder? Well, OK, a clown drove my great great great grandmother away from a very nice flax farm in Country Antrim. (She settled in Brooklyn and the rest is history.)

    But yeah, I think the clown fanatic metaphor is about right. I still don’t get why so many Americans think the British royal family is something very special.

  80. says

    So, do you dispute Liz functions as the Queen of England…?

    Yes! Just like I dispute that Biden functions as the President of California.

    Especially in this case, because their whole thing is titles and rules.

  81. John Morales says

    SC, if you don’t think Liz functions as the Queen of England, how do you account for judges in England swearing their oaths to her?

    When judges are sworn in they take two oaths/affirmations. The first is the oath of allegiance and the second the judicial oath; these are collectively referred to as the judicial oath.

    Oath of allegiance

    “I, _________ , do swear by Almighty God that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Second, her heirs and successors, according to law.”

    Judicial oath

    “I, _________ , do swear by Almighty God that I will well and truly serve our Sovereign Lady Queen Elizabeth the Second in the office of ________ , and I will do right to all manner of people after the laws and usages of this realm, without fear or favour, affection or ill will.”

    (https://www.judiciary.uk/about-the-judiciary/the-judiciary-the-government-and-the-constitution/oaths/)

  82. says

    PaulBC @ #94:

    As far as I’m concerned, a lot of people call Elizabeth “Queen of England.”

    That’s a nonsensical statement. Many people do call her this – it’s not a matter of opinion.

    The rest is inside baseball.

    LOL. I’m an anarchist. KG is a democratic socialist, but I know this is one of his pet peeves, and he happens to be right.

  83. Rob Grigjanis says

    PaulBC @96: Before the English (or Norman) clowns came in to murder grandfathers, the Irish had their own local clowns murdering each other’s grandfathers. My own family’s forebears were murdered, assimilated or driven out to the UK, Canada and Australia by antimonarchist Russian clowns.

  84. John Morales says

    SC, I never disputed he was right that it’s not one of her formal titles:

    KG:

    “Queen of England” is not one of Elizabeth Windsor’s array of titles

    [me] But you don’t deny she is the Queen of England, right?

    In short, he is right, but so am I. There is no conflict.

    Thing is, though it’s not one of her titles, she is indeed England’s queen. This is a fact, not an opinion.
    That she doesn’t have that term as part of her titles does not negate the actuality.

  85. says

    SC, if you don’t think Liz functions as the Queen of England, how do you account for judges in England swearing their oaths to her?

    Uh…

    “SC, if you don’t think Joe functions as the President of Western Arkansas, how do you account for US Attorneys in Western Arkansas being appointed by him?”

    Again, no part of subunits is difficult to grasp, and had someone else you wanted to troll made the opposite argument you would undoubtedly be grasping it.

  86. Rob Grigjanis says

    John @98: Seriously, that is the dumbest argument I’ve seen you make in the eight years or so I’ve been around here. If a judge swears an oath in Scunthorpe, Liz functions as the Queen of Scunthorpe? Ooh, let me guess – Scunthorpe isn’t a country, which for some unexplained reason is important to you. Round and round we go…

  87. says

    In short, he is right, but so am I. There is no conflict.

    Thing is, though it’s not one of her titles, she is indeed England’s queen. This is a fact, not an opinion.

    You were not right, John. She’s the Queen of England in much the same sense Biden is the President of Virginia and Morrison is the Prime Minister of New South Wales. You’re engaged in wordplay, and you know it.

    OK, this was fun, but I’m going to say goodnight.

  88. Rob Grigjanis says

    John @98: Seriously, that is the dumbest argument I’ve seen you make in the eight years or so I’ve been around here. If a judge swears an oath in Sc_nthorpe, Liz functions as the Queen of Sc_nthorpe? Ooh, let me guess – Sc_nthorpe isn’t a country, which for some unexplained reason is important to you. Round and round we go…

    PS Can’t believe I had to butcher the name of a perfectly nice town to get this posted.

  89. PaulBC says

    SC@104 Hey, I might as well get a side pissing match going.

    But @102 was supposed to be a little bit funny. (Like “I used to be but I still am.”) Not to you, I guess. More to the point, I concede I was writing sloppily and if I had been more careful, I would have written:

    As far as I’m concerned, the pertinent issue is the fact that a lot of people call Elizabeth “Queen of England.”

    See, I’ve now moved it from the realm of fact to opinion, and you can certainly disagree with my opinion. I gather that you find the precise meaning of the title to be more important than I do.

    Sorry (a little) about the initial sloppy formulation. Will you dispute that the above is what I was trying to say? (Maybe you do and then I have no answer really. I can’t prove it)

    It was not a nonsensical statement, merely a poorly written statement that most people will interpret as I intended it.

  90. says

    John Morales:

    But you don’t deny she is the Queen of England, right?

    You obviously didn’t believe KG thought England was outside of the United Kingdom. You were trolling or you were wrong (or both, but not neither).

  91. John Morales says

    “SC, if you don’t think Joe functions as the President of Western Arkansas, how do you account for US Attorneys in Western Arkansas being appointed swearing allegiance [to] him personally?”

    Again: ““I, _________ , do swear by Almighty God that I will well and truly serve our Sovereign Lady Queen Elizabeth the Second”

    You were not right, John. She’s the Queen of England in much the same sense Biden is the President of Virginia and Morrison is the Prime Minister of New South Wales. You’re engaged in wordplay, and you know it.

    You think judges in Virgina swear allegiance to “our Sovereign Biden” and judges in NSW swear allegiance to “our Sovereign Morrison”?

    (If not, how is it “in much the same sense”?)

    You’re engaged in wordplay, and you know it.

    Even were that what I was doing, it would still surpass your desperate and flawed facile analogies.

    OK, this was fun, but I’m going to say goodnight.

    Goodnight, and let it not be said I ignored you.

    Also, I’d better stop posting more comments on this thread. Didn’t intend to post so many.

  92. John Morales says

    Oops, should have refreshed. Well, in the spirit of not ignoring SC:

    You obviously didn’t believe KG thought England was outside of the United Kingdom. You were trolling or you were wrong (or both, but not neither).

    Fallacy of the excluded middle.

    Yes neither. I was alluding to the fact that she is indeed the Queen of England, and that people not au fait with local politics would not know the term is deprecated because of said local politics. And by local I mean the UK.

    (Shame you didn’t start with that, eh?)

    Honestly, most people don’t give a shit about “the politically important difference between England and the UK” — I personally don’t, though I am aware of it.

    From here, they’re much the same.

  93. says

    PaulBC:

    More to the point, I concede I was writing sloppily and if I had been more careful, I would have written:

    As far as I’m concerned, the pertinent issue is the fact that a lot of people call Elizabeth “Queen of England.”

    Better in one sense, but not pertinent. Ad populum. Followed by an appeal to authority.

    I gather that you find the precise meaning of the title to be more important than I do.

    The meaning of the title(s) is the crux of the whole discussion. I don’t give a flying fuck about this or any other monarchy (also irrelevant!). I’m convinced she’s not the Queen of England in any meaningful sense, and I support factual correctness in whatever realm.

    I do find it funny to see John Morales arguing the non-pedantic side of a question.

    Agreed!

  94. John Morales says

    Yes, SC. They swear allegiance to their monarch. Specifically, their Queen.
    By name.

  95. John Morales says

    (sheesh, can’t resist!)

    Ad populum. Followed by an appeal to authority.

    AKA Democracy and rule of law.

  96. says

    Yes neither. I was alluding to the fact that she is indeed the Queen of England, and that people not au fait with local politics would not know the term is deprecated because of said local politics. And by local I mean the UK.

    This in no way argues that it was neither. The question was whether it was accurate to call her, as many do, the Queen of England. You knew the political unit of which she’s officially viewed as monarch includes England but isn’t limited to England. Not sure what the rest of this is about. KG didn’t say or imply that it was deprecated, simply that it was incorrect.

    You think judges in Virgin[i]a swear allegiance to “our Sovereign Biden” and judges in NSW swear allegiance to “our Sovereign Morrison”?

    What is it with the irrelevancies tonight? It’s the political unit that’s of importance here, not the form of government or particular rituals.

  97. says

    Yes, SC. They swear allegiance to their monarch. Specifically, their Queen.
    By name.

    Look at the link and see who all the “they”s are.

    AKA Democracy and rule of law.

    Um…OK… Now I will say goodnight for good. ‘Night.

  98. KG says

    <

    blockquote>Now, interestingly, the one person in the current royal family with training as a mechanic is…Queen Elizabeth II – mvwedge@54

    Ah! So it was her who nipped over to Paris and tampered with Diana’s brakes!

  99. KG says

    Let’s remember, this all came about because KG objected to the term “Queen of England”. – John Morales@80

    Actually, what I originally objected to@31 was the term “the English monarchy”. I admit the term “Queen of England” irritates me, not just because it’s inaccurate, but because it suggests an inability or unwillingness to distinguish England from the UK; but “the English monarchy” makes that inability or unwillingness explicit. Since the continuation of the UK in its present form is very much a live political issue, with ramifications far beyond internal UK politics, the distinction is one that anyone with an interest in international issues should be careful to make.

    If you don’t believe me, search the internet for “Queen of England” and for “President of Oregon”, and see how the results differ. – John Morales@91

    A common error is still an error. If “Queen of England” is intended simply as a description and not a title, the initial “Q” of “Queen” should be lower-case, just as it should be in “the queen of Tasmania” or “the queen of Nether Wallop”. “Queen of England” is a compound proper noun, and the last day anyone could correctly write: “I talked to the Queen of England today” was 30th April 1707.

    I do find it funny to see John Morales arguing the non-pedantic side of a question. – PaulBC@108

    Word!

    Honestly, most people don’t give a shit about “the politically important difference between England and the UK” — I personally don’t, though I am aware of it. – John Morales@111

    Well at least you’re honest about your parochialism.

  100. KG says

    Queen of Australia is her title in Australia, but not elsewhere. – John Morales

    WTF is this even supposed to mean? – SC

    While in Australia she is constitutionally obliged to address the Prime Minister as “cobber”, drink Foster’s lager out of the can, and complain about whingeing Poms :-p. Just as she is religiously obliged (as supreme governor of the Church of England) to love bishops while in England, but (having promised at her accession to maintain the governance of the Presbyterian Church of Scotland) hate them while in Scotland!

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