Sixty Joyless De-Britished Uncrowned Commonpoor Years (1949-2009)

Elizabeth II Vice-Regal Saint: Remembering Paul Comtois (1895–1966), Lt.-Governor of Québec
Britannic Inheritance: Britain's proud legacy. What legacy will America leave?
English Debate: Daniel Hannan revels in making mince meat of Gordon Brown
Crazy Canucks: British MP banned from Canada on national security grounds
Happy St. Patrick's: Will Ireland ever return to the Commonwealth?
Voyage Through the Commonwealth: World cruise around the faded bits of pink.
No Queen for the Green: The Green Party of Canada votes to dispense with monarchy.
"Sir Edward Kennedy": The Queen has awarded the senator an honorary Knighthood.
President Obama: Hates Britain, but is keen to meet the Queen?
The Princess Royal: Princess Anne "outstanding" in Australia.
H.M.S. Victory: In 1744, 1000 sailors went down with a cargo of gold.
Queen's Commonwealth: Britain is letting the Commonwealth die.
Justice Kirby: His support for monarchy almost lost him appointment to High Court
Royal Military Academy: Sandhurst abolishes the Apostles' Creed.
Air Marshal Alec Maisner, R.I.P. Half Polish, half German and 100% British.
Cherie Blair: Not a vain, self regarding, shallow thinking viper after all.
Harry Potter: Celebrated rich kid thinks the Royals should not be celebrated
The Royal Jelly: A new king has been coronated, and his subjects are in a merry mood
Victoria Cross: Australian TROOPER MARK DONALDSON awarded the VC
Godless Buses: Royal Navy veteran, Ron Heather, refuses to drive his bus
Labour's Class War: To expunge those with the slightest pretensions to gentility
100 Top English Novels of All Time: The Essential Fictional Library
BIG BEN: Celebrating 150 Years of the Clock Tower

Friday, 29 February 2008

The Art of the Possible

By David Byers (Convenor of ACM in Country, New South Wales)

Someone once said that politics is the art of the possible, something Australian monarchists have come to understand. All monarchists must ask themselves a few questions and give some honest answers:

Do we want the survival of the Crown?

Do we understand the character of the realm in which we live?

Can we accept the character of the realm we live in?

Are we prepared to present the monarchy in a way that makes sense to our own peoples?

For my part, having defended the Crown in Australia since 1988, I have come to the very firm opinion that the monarchy must connect with the people of Australia in an Australian way or it is finished. Australia has developed its own history and relationship with the Crown separately and differently from the UK, Canada or New Zealand. This is not to say we deny the British heritage of the monarchy, yet we must embrace our own heritage with it.

Let me explain my own feelings about the monarchy. Whilst watching the TV series “A Year with the Royal Family”, I found that there are many things about the pomp and ritual around the Sovereign in Britain that I find strange and silly. It is not that these things are strange and silly, it is just that they are alien to me and my understanding of the Crown. I have grown up in a country that does not have Barons, Lords and lots of pomp. We just have the lone figure of the Queen. For us that is the monarchy, that and our Governors and Governors-General. When our Queen came to Australia we had our own Australian dignified yet low key events.

The diversity across the countries that call Elizabeth Queen is fine and makes the Crown strong. Forget this and try to push a very British idea of the Crown on countries like Australia and you have lost, you have played right into the hands of our enemies.

Again, if I can paraphrase: “keeping the Crown is the art of the possible”.


Marquis Black said...


After all, who says that you need to act British in order to be loyal? Does the British identity not imply a cultural diversity in and of itself? After all, the British culture is one of evolution and adaptation, and Australian culture is merely an off-shoot of that.

Therefore, it is logical that the understanding and acceptance of the Crown should have evolved differently amongst different cultures.

Lord Best said...

Another thing we agree on Mr Byers, how frightening. Although I have to admit I enjoy the pomp and ceremony, but then I'm renowned for my pomposity.
But most Australians are far more laid back than I. This documentary seems to have been quite a hit though, regular viewing audience of one million, out of a population of 22million, not bad at all.

David Byers said...

Yes, the documentary is a hit. Getting back to what I was saying in my post, the monarchy is a little like the English language - we all speak English and acknowledge it comes from England but we all have our own take on it.

Lord Best said...

Given that Australians still seem to have a soft spot for Prince Charles because of his visits to Australia (he went to school here for a while I believe), I think it would be a damn good thing for the Monarchy here if one of the Princes moved out here to fulfill some kind of a role. Governor General was mentioned, but there must be some other reason to send a Prince out here. Preferably at British tax payers expense...
This assumes New Idea doesn't get the Princes killed first.
I think the Princes lively lifestyle would go down well in Australia, how many countries can boast a Prime Minister who recieved a boost in popularity after admitting he was to drunk to remember what he did at a strip club. My heart bursts with patriotism.

Beaverbrook said...

I find this to be a very sensible post. That said, let's not go so far as to suggest that the pomp of monarchy in Britain is somehow foreign to the rest of us.

David Byers said...

I think the thing to remember is that like the English language we have made it our own but never forgetting from where it came, we speak Australian English in Australia but we do not forget Shakespeare.

By the way I do not find all the pomp foreign just some of it, that said I'm not against it.