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

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Liberty or Equality: Would you feast at a medieval banquet or dine in a modern democracy?

Imagine, writes the erudite monarchist philosopher, Erik von Kühnelt-Leddihn (1909—1999), in Liberty or Equality, a tale of two feasts:


Let us conjure up the memory of a late medieval feast. The guests have arrived in a great variety of clothes, and even the costumes of the males show the most adventurous diversity. But they all would have belonged to one faith (devout Catholicism) and one basic ideology (feudal monarchism). Based on this common denominator, one might expect a relatively homogenous pattern of behaviour and conformity and not a society where liberty, individualism and the creative impulse flourished.

- OR -

Yet we can very well imagine a dinner given in a "modern democracy" in which all the men arrive in black tuxedo uniforms, all of them with clean-shaven faces, all of them uttering in unison with parrot-like monotony the same identical political and social clichés. After some questioning and investigation one would nevertheless find that this monotony stems from a chaotic cauldron of the most varied religions and philosophies. If a deist Mason, a Catholic, a Barthian, a vegetarian with Hinduist notions, and a "Freethinker" consider it as natural that they all believe in equality, majority rule, compulsory education and "progress" - then we have to doubt sincerely not only the logicalitv of their capacity to think, but also their real freedom of thinking!


Anonymous said...

What is the point of this?

Beaverbrook said...

In my rush to post, I guess I didn't provide enough context, but the author was pointing out that the old monarchies were much freer societies and that majority rule democracies are actually sly forms of enslavement. The emasculated monarchies that we have today are powerless to safeguard individual liberties against the levelling tendencies of popular elected people's mandates, and the idea that people actually have a say in their parliaments is pure fiction. Pore a bucket of water in Lake Superior and see the water rise.

His criticism is that modern democracies result in nothing more than the low drive for sameness, and are therefore more synonymous with equality than liberty. As such he was an avowed monarchist and declared himself an enemy of all forms of totalitarianism, including the sly tyranny of democractic "mandates".

A king would never have countenanced an end to foxhunting, a prohibition on alcohol or an income tax, but democracies pass all kinds of things without batting an eye.

Invictus_88 said...

I rather think that the enjoyment and variation depends principally on whether one is a diner or a waiter.

Personally I find many interesting and challenging variations in my dinner company, even if we do all wear a suit and tie. From this I can only conclude that the quality of a dining experience rises and falls not on the historical period and associated variation of attire, but on the calibre of the dining membership.

Dullards in the renaissance will only talk of stag hunting and riding, dullards in our era will only talk of credit crunch and economy, but in a good dining club in any era there will be much to enjoy!

Beaverbrook said...

I think you took the bite out of this post, Invictus, from which it cannot recover.

Nomennovum said...

Speaking of taking a bite (and then washing it down), before your question can reasonably be answered, I need to know:

Did they have nachos, ice cold beer, and pumpkin pie in those days?

J.K. Baltzersen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
J.K. Baltzersen said...

Did they have nachos, ice cold beer, and pumpkin pie in those days?


I don't know about our editor, but I now yield completely!

Of course, modern democracy is to credit for our comforts. Why didn't I think of that before?!? And modern advances of medicine, technology, and dentistry are due to the high taxes of our times.

Post hoc ergo propter hoc!