Who still wants a Monarchy? Er, most of us


by Leo Barasi    
2:04 pm - June 1st 2012

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There have already been two polls on opinion about the monarchy over the last week and I’m sure there’ll be more in the coming days.

The Guardian last Thursday found a ‘surge in royalism’ despite doubts about whether Charles should take the throne.

Another in today’s Independent apparently found similar lack of excitement about Charles.


From these new polls the analysis I did a few months ago looks still to hold:

1) As the Guardian poll suggests, British opinion remains firmly committed to keeping a monarchy. Perhaps it’s become even stronger since the royal wedding and the jubilee, but the idea of a republic has never appealed in recent decades.

2) Yet, this is perhaps more about hostility to the idea of Britain becoming a republic, rather than love for the monarchy. Over the late ’80s and early ’90s there was a significant shift from people thinking Britain would be worse if it lost the monarchy to people thinking it would make no difference.

The last polling I’ve seen on this is 10 years old, so perhaps things have changed, but it does suggest that people no longer buy the argument that the monarchy brings benefits to the UK.

3) As both recent polls suggest, there is indeed currently a problem with the succession. Of course this could well change when – if – it comes up and ceremonialism takes over, but at the moment there are very clear doubts about what should happen next.

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About the author
Leo is a regular contributor to Liberal Conspiracy. He manages communications for a small policy organisation, and writes about polling and info from public opinion surveys at Noise of the Crowd
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Reader comments


1. GenialityofEvil

The timing of the poll makes it pointless, it’d be like putting out a poll on 11th of september 2001 asking people if they hate terrorists.

Er, not me.

I’m sure everyone is just pleased about the monarchy right now because they get a day off work. As someone who only works Saturdays and is DREADING how busy work will be tomorrow, I’m not bloody pleased.

The Royal Wedding and the jubilee and the Olympics all serve to make me a typical grumpy Brit. It’s all about being forced to have fun and I HATE being forced to have fun!

Just give us more bank holidays. Don’t make me celebrate an old impossibly rich woman who shakes hands for a living.

3. Chaise Guevara

Er, who asked the question you’re answering sardonically in the title?

4. Sean Halsey

So, the monarchy has that same air of legitimacy as the death penalty, which 65% of people in the UK support: http://www.angus-reid.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/2011.08.23_Death_BRI.pdf

@ 4 Sean

So it sounds like you, much like quite a lot of people on this site, are all up for democracy unless it produces a result you don’t like.

There isn’t a “problem” with succession. It’s just that the first in line to the throne isn’t as popular as the current incumbent. But the populace don’t have a choice, and public opinion will have no influence whatsoever on who succeeds the Queen. That’s a hereditary monarchy for you.

I suppose it will be interesting, once Charles takes the throne, to see if it really is the institution of the monarchy that is popular, or just the Queen herself.

I wish we would take the occasion of the Diamond Jubilee to finally get rid of this unelected monarch: http://andreasmoser.wordpress.com/2012/02/07/diamond-jubilee-elizabeth-ii/

8. Chaise Guevara

@ 5 Tyler

“So it sounds like you, much like quite a lot of people on this site, are all up for democracy unless it produces a result you don’t like.”

Democracy isn’t carried out by taking polls on individual subjects then making the results law. Try making that work on a scale larger than an ancient Greek city-state.

9. Shatterface

Supporting the monarchy but complaing about the succession makes as mutch sense as supporting the lottery and bitching about the winner.

I suggest people who believe in the monarchy should fund it themselves as part of the Big Society.

Or at least it should be disestablished in the way the church should be; since the Queen is the head of the Anglican Church one disestablishment would logically entail the other.

Its not just the obscene expense, it is the effect the monarchy has on our political system, with the deference and entitlement that comes with the institution.

@ Chaise

I suppose that’s why so many on this site were whining about the “unelected Tory government” after the last election.

In all seriousness though, not withstanding the particular way our democracy works, there does seem to be a certain mindset of people unable to understand that – not least our friend Sean. Too often I see people arguing something from the point of “more people want this” and then argue something else on the basis of “even though more people want this, they are wrong”. It’s a very Fabian, i know better than you, elites governing on behalf of the people way of thinking.

@ 9 Shatterface

You do realise the monarchy is a net contributor to the public purse don’t you? The main cost of the monarchy is upkeep of buildings, which would still have to be done regardless.

12. Chaise Guevara

@ 10 Tyler

“I suppose that’s why so many on this site were whining about the “unelected Tory government” after the last election. ”

Yep, that’s stupid.

“In all seriousness though, not withstanding the particular way our democracy works, there does seem to be a certain mindset of people unable to understand that – not least our friend Sean. Too often I see people arguing something from the point of “more people want this” and then argue something else on the basis of “even though more people want this, they are wrong”. It’s a very Fabian, i know better than you, elites governing on behalf of the people way of thinking.”

I dunno. This is argumentum ad populum. Just because 50%+ of people believe something, that doesn’t mean I have to agree, and I don’t think it makes me an elitist to maintain a minority opinion, either. I’m willing to bet almost everyone has an unusual view on some matter or another.

Of course, if someone places inconsistent value on majority opinion based on whether it lines up with theirs, then that’s hypocrisy.

13. Sean Halsey

Tyler, what makes you think I am a proponent of absolute democracy? I am a defender of rights, which populist democracy tramples over. The tyranny of the majority does not permit free speech, freedom of religion, or any of the freedoms we ought to value.

14. Chaise Guevara

@ 11 Tyler

“You do realise the monarchy is a net contributor to the public purse don’t you?”

What’s the maths for that? Normally when people claim this they’re either a) assuming that assets of the Crown are the personal belongings of Our Liz, or b) arbitrarily claiming that the Queen is personally responsible for most of London’s tourism industry. I’m pretty sure that if we declared ourselves a republic tomorrow, we’d keep the crown assets and not lose much, if anything, in the way of tourism.

People who support the monarchy but want William to become King instead of Charles are the stupidest, most brainless people in the country. There is no possible logic to that position. They are morons.

The monarchy represents the worst aspects of this country – the apathy and passivity that make us accept a head of state we don’t choose are the same that are allowing the coalition to destroy our economy and society.

People who support the monarchy but want William to become King instead of Charles are the stupidest, most brainless people in the country. There is no possible logic to that position. They are morons.

Correct. it’s born out of pragmatism more than anything else though. Charles interferes in politics a lot more than his mother and has gone on record that he intends to use his tenure as head of state in a more active presidential manner. It’s generally assumed that a Charles kingship will quickly make republicans of the majority :)

Chris @15:

“People who support the monarchy but want William to become King instead of Charles are the stupidest, most brainless people in the country. There is no possible logic to that position.”

Agreed. To reformulate the publicity slogan for a famous film:

“Monarchy means never having a say. Sorry!”

People who support the monarchy but want William to become King instead of Charles are the stupidest, most brainless people in the country. There is no possible logic to that position. They are morons.
I think people should try to avoid calling others morons. I’m not a lover of the royals, but I can’t stand some of the nose in the air Republicans who think they are so much smarter than your average person.

I will go out of my way to attend some jubilee celebrations in Belfast this weekend, cos it’s the local culture in some parts. The flags and bunting have been going up, and it would seem churlish to ignore the thing …. or even worse, sneer at it.
When you do that you disrespect the people.

Oo-er, I dread to think how Chris would describe me. I’m a republican by nature (cos it’s logical), but support the retention of the Monarchy (for reasons I can’t quite articulate).

Chaise, I’m sure you’re right about tourism etc, however the Royal’s wealth can be exaggerated. They do, after all, have responsibilities, have to conform to xyz and live their lives in front of a lens. I think I’d rather be a Jagger or a Rothschild than a Windsor.

I tend towards republicanism, although I have no problem with wishing the current monarch well. In fact, even if a move to a republic were viable at the moment ( which it isn’t ) I think it would be the hight of bad manners to give her her cards at this point. Sentimental, perhaps.

She seems to be in good health so it is likely that Charles will be nearer 70 than 60 when his time comes. Before that happens we should perhaps as a nation be asking ourselves what exactly it is that we value in the institution and re-writing the job description aand remuneration package accordingly. I suspect that Cylux is right and that a few years of Charles will see a revival of republicanism. You can inherit land, money and titles, but you can’t inherit affection or respect. Without the latter the former is liable to come under intense scrutiny.

Over the last sixty years we have made (perhaps limited) progress in ditching the idea that because one of your ancestors made it big you and your progeny are entitled to eternal deference, wealth and power. Historically, if they made it big it was probably as henchman or whore, so don’t put on airs. A hereditary head of state validates that. I could put up with a scaled back ceremorial monarchy, it’s the aristocracy I can’t stand. Bastards stole my dog.

21. Roger Mexico

As you might expect there has been a lot of polling on the monarchy recently, so it’s not surprising that Leo Barasi has missed some of YouGov’s (there’s three separate lots on their archive in the past five days alone).

In particular there’s one that asks every question that you could possibly want about people’s attitude to the monarchy as an institution here:

http://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/ir6eqjwsex/YG-Archives-Life-RoyalFamily-YouGovQs-300512.pdf

I’m afraid it’s not good news for republicans. 67% “think the institution of the monarchy is good … for Britain” (up from 61% at the time of the last Royal Wedding) as opposed to only 9% “bad”. And 73% “think Britain should continue to have a monarchy in the future” only 16% that it “Should have an elected head of state instead” (from 69% and 20% a year ago). Furthermore 47% of monarchists feel “very strongly” about there belief; only 30% of republicans do.

Indeed while only 30% believe the Queen has “a lot” or “a fair amount” of power, 44% think that she should have one of these amounts.

And many people still do believe that the monarchy brings benefits. 61% (versus 31%) agree that “The Monarchy is an important part of Britain’s democratic system” while a massive 81% (v 11%) think “The Royal Family provide a significant amount of revenue for Britain through tourism”.

The only negative perception is that “The Royal family and monarchy promote a class system and inequality within Britain” and that is only agreed to by 49% to 42%. Even “The Royal Family is outdated and out of touch” get only 30% to agree versus 61%.

It’s worth pointing out that there seems very little difference between men and women or by class (ABC1 v C2DE) or by region on most of these questions. There is some difference by age group – as you might expect older voters are more monarchist – but it’s not as dramatic age gradients often are (there may be a problem in the 18-24 sample in this poll so that should be treated cautiously).

22. Charlieman

@19. Jack C: “Oo-er, I dread to think how Chris would describe me. I’m a republican by nature (cos it’s logical), but support the retention of the Monarchy (for reasons I can’t quite articulate).”

I wouldn’t go so far as that, but I would accept that Republicans (I’m not having a go at contributors to this thread) have presented piss poor arguments and I wouldn’t want anyone to abolish the monarchy on their bases.

My own opposition is not about the economic “cost” of the royal family. In my mind, the royals are intertwined with a UK that no longer exists, that the royals represent an imperial age. The royals have modernised, and the Commonwealth of Nations represents countries beyond the Empire. All the same, I conclude that royalism leads to a misunderstanding of what UK *is* and that Republicans don’t have an answer either.

23. Chaise Guevara

@ 21 Roger

While I believe the monarchy tends to have more support than opposition in general, it’s worth mentioning the timing behind these polls. Note the minor jump in approval around the jubilee, up from another time (royal wedding) which also probably encouraged monarchism but wasn’t about the institution so much.

Your stat about how much republicans and monarchists care about the issue is a big problem for any serious republican. People who are against the monarchy are just less likely to see it as a deal-breaker than people who support it.

The only thing I found genuinely worrying was this: “Indeed while only 30% believe the Queen has “a lot” or “a fair amount” of power, 44% think that she should have one of these amounts.” It’s impossible to know how many of those just believe that the figurehead, regardless of who it is, should have more power to hold Parliament to account. The rest of them are people who would happily hand power to an unelected leader, and that’s not at all good.

I wonder how much of it is due to people assuming that Liz would support their personal views. During the Brown years, Have Your Say was full of people demanding that the Queen step into politics, on the assumption that she’d kick Brown out and install someone they preferred. I’m guessing Jeremy Clarkson.

24. Roger Mexico

People who support the monarchy but want William to become King instead of Charles are the stupidest, most brainless people in the country. There is no possible logic to that position. They are morons.

Er sorry #15, #16, #17 but it’s you who are coming across as stupid, brainless and indeed morons. For example the people being surveyed by ICM for the Guardian were asked “When the Queen abdicates or dies, what do you think should happen next?” They were being asked what they thought should happen not what would happen. The third option aside from Charles and William was “Britain should elect a head of state and become a Republic instead of having a new monarch.” Presumably you think the 10% who chose that are stupid and brainless as well.

Of course those who back William (or a republic) may just have a good understanding of history and that “The British Constitution is what happens”. After all there have been previous instances when a legal King or Queen has been disposed of and replaced with a more acceptable candidate – most recently in 1936. The legal niceties are always sorted out and life goes on.

It’s never wise to denounce the intellectual capacity of large numbers of your fellow citizens without at least a little bit of thought.

As it happens I wouldn’t even rely on Charles bringing about the end of the monarchy. For example YouGov asked a similar question and got a similar response here:

http://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/3ib8mvhtrr/YG-Archives-Pol-ST-results-25-270512v2.pdf

Thinking about the future monarch, which of the following would you prefer?

Prince Charles should succeed as King after Queen Elizabeth II 37%

Prince William should succeed as King after Queen Elizabeth II instead of Prince Charles 44%

Neither – there should be no monarch after Queen Elizabeth II 13%

But when later in the week:

http://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/u759dzo4qe/YG-Archives-Pol-Sun-JubileeRoyalFamily-300512.pdf

they asked And how good or bad a job do you think Prince Charles and Prince William will each do as King?

William won with a score of 83% to 5%, but Charles got 61% to 26% for a good job, which rather suggests that any preference for William as next King my be more due to people feeling that William will do a better job than that Charles will do a bad one.

So republicans should not feel too hopeful that a King Charles (or whatever he will call himself) will automatically advance their cause much.

25. Chaise Guevara

@ 22 Charlieman

“My own opposition is not about the economic “cost” of the royal family. In my mind, the royals are intertwined with a UK that no longer exists, that the royals represent an imperial age.”

Agreed, more or less, although the costs ARE lamentable when we have people in more need (i.e. almost everyone in the country). My issue, which may or may not be a rephrase of yours, is that the monarchy is fundamentally undemocratic. It’s frankly embarrassing for a country like the UK to be ruled, however symbolically, by a hereditary queen.

“All the same, I conclude that royalism leads to a misunderstanding of what UK *is* and that Republicans don’t have an answer either.”

I think this is perfection fallacy, tbh. A democratic and less ostentatious figurehead would be an improvement, all else being equal. Hell, a meritocratic figurehead would be an improvement.

26. Roger Mexico

That 44% shocked me a bit too – as you imply it’s probably an anti-politician thing rather than a desire for the return of the divine right of kings. It’s also worth pointing out that 51% said the Queen should have ‘Not a lot’ or ‘None at all’ in terms of power. So the British public isn’t demanding to go back to Tudor times yet.

And, although the question was explicitly asked about “Queen Elizabeth II” quite a lot of that 44% must have been thinking of the role of the head of state – which explains why even 11% of republicans thought she should have at least a fair amount of power

27. Charlieman

@24. Chaise Guevara: “It’s frankly embarrassing for a country like the UK to be ruled, however symbolically, by a hereditary queen.”

It is daft but not embarrassing. The UK is like many other countries by having a royal family. Other royalists include the imperialist Danes and Swedes (time allows us to forgive Viking raids on the UK) or Spain (the royal family that wisely said “no thanks” to Francoists, but a nation with which we have territorial arguments).

Having a royal as head of state is not a diplomatic problem. Having a royal as head of state is a UK problem.

The “UK population” has not entirely twigged about the end of Empire or understood “Commonwealth” or establishing a role in the EEC [what was the org called last week, I forget?]. No doubt SMFS has the answers.

28. Charlieman

@24. Chaise Guevara: “A democratic and less ostentatious figurehead would be an improvement, all else being equal. Hell, a meritocratic figurehead would be an improvement.”

The German President may or may not match those criteria. Do you know the name of the President of Germany?

I would suggest that a replacement for king, queen or president is a nomark with attitude. A somebody who will spark up to say “you can’t do that”.

charlieman @22:

“The royals have modernised”

As Craig Murray has pointed out, they even invented the Euro; you’ve had a German subsidising a Greek for 60-odd years!

Chaise @24:

“My issue [...] is that the monarchy is fundamentally undemocratic.”

I would go further and say that it is fundamentally antidemocratic. What an absurdity to have the so-called ‘Mother of Parliaments’ existing under a system where power – at least in the literal sense – is held by someone who just happen to emerge from the ‘right’ uterus. And that is not taking account the anti-democratic practices of the ‘Royal Prerogative’, which can be used (and frequently is used) to over-rule or circumvent the elected parliament.

No-one should hold that sort of constitutional power unless they have put themselves to the ultimate test of popular election. Otherwise, it’s time to give up the pretense that we live in an actual, functioning democracy.

Chaise @ 24:

“the monarchy is fundamentally undemocratic.”

Yes it is. And?

32. douglas clark

I do not wish the victims of all of this any harm whatsoever. It just seems to me that royalty is a binding glue for the worst elements of our society. And these poor bastard royals are the victims in this ridiculous tomfoolery.

I was not taken by damons’ conribution at 18:

I will go out of my way to attend some jubilee celebrations in Belfast this weekend, cos it’s the local culture in some parts. The flags and bunting have been going up, and it would seem churlish to ignore the thing …. or even worse, sneer at it.
When you do that you disrespect the people.

This is an opinion forum. We are all individuals who come from different backgrounds, I am a moderate republican, but I know that means different things in different parts of the UK. Frankly, I couldn’t car less about “disrespecting the people”. If they desreve disrespect, then they should get it!

It is completely outrageous to pretend that the reaction in Belfast is actually to do with the monarch, a fly in amber if you like, rather than a rather desperate desire to clone to Mother England.

The Queen is probably more interested in race horses and corgis than she is in affairs of state.

Let our torture of her end! Let her retire to green fields that will be forever England. Let her take her son with her and disassemble this cruelty by our collective delusion of who are ‘our betters’ or ‘our masters’.

For it is as clear as day that she would revel in that. How many pairs of scissors does one person requre to collect in a lifetime?

33. Chaise Guevara

@ 30 P Ve M

“Yes it is. And?”

I’m not sure of your point, mainly because you have aggressively not made one. Am I supposed to be explaining the benefits of democracy vs tyranny? Or am I supposed to be explaining why an undemocratic leader offends me even when she lacks any real power? It’s hard to know how to procede in the conversation without knowing your interests.

@21. Roger Mexico

As you might expect there has been a lot of polling on the monarchy recently, so it’s not surprising that Leo Barasi has missed some of YouGov’s (there’s three separate lots on their archive in the past five days alone).

In particular there’s one that asks every question that you could possibly want about people’s attitude to the monarchy as an institution here:

http://d25d2506sfb94s.cloudfront.net/cumulus_uploads/document/ir6eqjwsex/YG-Archives-Life-RoyalFamily-YouGovQs-300512.pdf

Interesting that only 44% of 18-24 year olds think that the Monarchy is good for Britain. Admittedly they are the only age group in which a minority holds the view that they are good for Britain, but it’s a potential portent for the future. Especially if we get an unpopular King Charles!

@chaise

>Am I supposed to be explaining the benefits of democracy vs tyranny?

You might try to explain how QEII is tyrannising the country, compared to all those Dictators with faux elections.

Constitutional monarchy is pretty clearly working far better than any other alternative around at present.

Life doesn’t have to be the neat little system you have in your head. Get over it.

>Especially if we get an unpopular King Charles!

I think that KC may be a surprise. If anything becoming Monarch will reduce his space for personal idiosyncracies.

who aren’t doing
Or am I supposed to be explaining why an undemocratic leader offends me even when she lacks any real power? It’s hard to know how to procede in the conversation without knowing your interests.

Cyberman please delete…

“who aren’t doing
Or am I supposed to be explaining why an undemocratic leader offends me even when she lacks any real power? It’s hard to know how to procede in the conversation without knowing your interests.”

I’ll stick with the queen, to imagine Blair and letter box lil in position of the king and queen especially if only 35% of the population bothers to vote.

Nope I’ll stick with what we have….

38. Chaise Guevara

@ 35 Matt

“You might try to explain how QEII is tyrannising the country, compared to all those Dictators with faux elections.”

Um, why would I need to “explain” a statement I never made?

“Constitutional monarchy is pretty clearly working far better than any other alternative around at present.”

How so?

“Life doesn’t have to be the neat little system you have in your head. Get over it.”

What system would that be?

Chaise @ 33:

I’m not sure how asking you to explain your position comes across as “aggressive”, or why you find it confusing. OK, then: you say that the Monarchy is bad because it’s undemocratic. Why is this an argument for it being bad?

37

But isn’t that the point, we are stuck with what we have, which, considering that the Queen is part of our constitution, a democratic system, creates an oxymoron. We can get rid of the Blairs of this world, not so the individual which happens to be the existing monarch.

douglas clark @32:

“I am a moderate republican”

A genuine question: what is a ‘moderate’ republican? It seems to me that you either are a republican or you aren’t. That is to say, you either want a republican constitution for this country or you don’t – and if you don’t, then you’re not a republican, ‘moderate’ or otherwise.

Matt Wardman @35:

“Constitutional monarchy is pretty clearly working far better than any other alternative around at present.”

How many alternatives are being tried in this country ‘at present’?

And working far better in whose interests?

Matt Wardman @36:

“I think that KC may be a surprise. If anything becoming Monarch will reduce his space for personal idiosyncracies.”

Like it would have done for his uncle David had he not been manoeuvred aside on an unconvincing pretext, you mean?

And if it doesn’t prevent George VII (as he has made it known he would call himself) from continuing to behave like a combination of David Icke, Fotherington-Thomas and Charles I, what then? How would one get rid of him for someone more ‘suitable’? He’s already married a divorcee, so you wouldn’t be able to use that excuse again.

Robert @37:

“I’ll stick with the queen, to imagine Blair and letter box lil in position of the king and queen especially if only 35% of the population bothers to vote.”

Blair and Booth would not be ‘king and queen’. Blair would be president and his wife would be – in that charmingly retro phrase – ‘first lady’. The rest of their family would have to work for a living: compare and contrast…

The point is that a President Blair (like a President Cameron, President Thatcher, etc., etc.) would be elected to the position, they could be voted out by the same method (i.e. democracy), and checks and balances would be in place to provide for any situation (death, criminality, being declared non compos) where his/her position became untenable. On top of which, it would be a non-executive presidency – a figurehead, if you will – whose only remotely political rôle would be to uphold the constitution.

I would have no issue with a President Lizzie Windsor, as she would have the legitimacy of democratic mandate. People would then also have responsibility for the consequences of their own decision; or, as Mencken put it, “[T]he common people know what they want, and should get it good and hard.

42. Chaise Guevara

@ 39 P Ve M

“I’m not sure how asking you to explain your position comes across as “aggressive”, or why you find it confusing.”

Passive-aggressive, then. If your only question is “and?”, it’s kinda hard to know what you want me to explain, as I pointed out above.

“OK, then: you say that the Monarchy is bad because it’s undemocratic. Why is this an argument for it being bad?”

Because our country has made the positive progress from forms of despotism to democracy. We’re supposed to be a country that respects all adults as political equals. And hopefully we can continue to slowly throw off the straight-jacket of class. With that in mind, it’s symbolically embarrassing to have a figurehead who is put into the role by accident of birth.

It’s annoying rather than harmful. Although we may see that change if/when we get a monarch who decides to push their luck and try to influence policy.

You still haven’t told me whether you’re disputing that democracy in itself is generally a good thing.

Chaise,
Leaving aside the straight logical argument for a moment, some thoughts:

a) To what extent has our constitutional monarchy protected us from revolution, over-powerful presidents and other similar calamities?

b) To what extent does her non-partisan position help relationships with other countries? (Including the Commonwealth).

c) Being non-partisan is plus side of hereditary accession (in this case). Perhaps some powers of patronage would sit better with the monarch than the governing party?

Positive news: unusually it took until comment 29 before the words “German” and “Greek” were used. Better still, not even racially derogatory this time. Is Sally unwell by the way?

45. Merrymaker

What no republican explains is how the Monarchy is to be removed and a Presidential system installed in its place. I got intrigued by this question after the failure of the Australian referendum. Some rather cursory research showed that no Monarchy (not that I could find anyway) had been removed by a purely peaceful act of the democratic will. The nearest attempt was Australia and that failed. Iceland became a republic in 1944, by popular will of the Icelanders – but at the time Denmark was occupied by the nazis and Iceland was feeling vulnerable. In all other cases the Monarchy has fallen after civic violence of some kind. Ireland becoame a republic in 1949, but had already severed its royal ties after the establishment of the Free State. If our Monarchy is to be removed (presumably by referendum rather than revolution), then there has to be some explanation of what will replace it. Will the President be elected or appointed? If elected, will it be by direct or indirect elections? If appointed, by whom? Will the President have any executive powers? It is these kinds of questions upon which the referendum will be fought – in Australia they were raised, and the people voted for the devil they knew.

@43

b) To what extent does her non-partisan position help relationships with other countries? (Including the Commonwealth).

c) Being non-partisan is plus side of hereditary accession (in this case). Perhaps some powers of patronage would sit better with the monarch than the governing party?

Technically speaking those are arguments for keeping the current Queen, rather than Monarchy in general. As I said, Charles not only interferes behind the scenes in politics already (generally in a greeny, organic-loving, this building looks ugly kind of way) but has stated he intends to be a lot more interfering upon gaining the throne. The chances of him, and by extension the throne, remaining non-partisan are pretty much 0.
Still, maybe the Greens will get a boost :)

47. Shatterface

Positive news: unusually it took until comment 29 before the words “German” and “Greek” were used. Better still, not even racially derogatory this time. Is Sally unwell by the way?

It took up to 45 before we got the first Nazi reference.

48. Shatterface

If we have to have a monarch I want Tyrion Lannister from Game of Thrones.

49. douglas clark

The Judge,

If you need it spelled out, it means I’m not really too excited about it one way or another. But, on balance, I would vote for a republic if it ever came up.

My point is merely that people are being forced to do something by an accident of birth that, if they were truly free, they may prefer not to. It is a gilded form of slavery.

DC @32

I couldn’t car less about “disrespecting the people”. If they desreve disrespect, then they should get it!

Fair enough. But I think that you should treat someone’s support for royalty the way you might their religion. It might not be your thing and you might even think it’s fundamentally backward (which I think royalty probably is), but it would be like saying ”Hinduism sucks” to a bunch of Hindus, or similar to other religious people.
You don’t do that because it’s rude. You might even go along with some of the celebrations of the different religions.

Abolish the monarchy, but enjoy the party!

Shatterface (48):

Indeed, and that was only an indirect reference.

Is there some Jubilee love n peace in the air?

douglas clark @49:

Fair enough, I just wanted to be sure.

I would point out, though, that unlike slavery any monarch or member of his/her family is perfectly free to walk away from it by abdication or renunciation of his/her titles. That very few if any have ever sought to do so can’t simply be down to their being duty-struck; I suspect it has far more to do with their recognition that their positions hold massive advantages to them.

damon @50:

I do regard people’s monarchism in the same way as I might regard their adherence to religion; as being a great shame that they are in thrall to something so degrading, so lacking in substance, so mere. The ‘given’ of monarchy and the assumption of religion (at least, theistic religion) is the same; that of serfdom. I think people should have more dignity and self-esteem than that. And an article by the wretched Brendan O’Neill (Hitchens major without the intellect), reduced to avoiding the argument entirely by throwing the ‘killjoy’ epithet at us, only confirms this view.

Chaise @ 42:

“Because our country has made the positive progress from forms of despotism to democracy.”

“We have made progress in this direction” doesn’t imply “we ought to continue making progress in this direction”. One might as well say “Germany has made progress from having a totalitarian government to having a non-totalitarian one; therefore, she ought to continue this progress, and abolish her government altogether.”

And of course, there’s a good argument to be made that a lot of our “positive progress” has come about — and, more importantly, lasted — because it was carried out piecemeal and organically, rather than as an attempt to remodel the country based on first principles. (Cf. Revolutionary France, every communist regime.) Rejecting the monarchy because it doesn’t fit in with abstract principles about equality or progress or whatever is in fact the sort of attitude which, if taken to its conclusions, tends to retard progress rather than advance it.

@45 merrymaker

“Some rather cursory research showed that no Monarchy (not that I could find anyway) had been removed by a purely peaceful act of the democratic will.”

Both Italy (1946) and Greece (1974) held referendums which resulted in the people choosing to become republics rather than retain monarchies.

The lesson of both perhaps is that incompetent and unpopular monarchs tend to have a damaging impact on the institution of monarchy per se. Britain’s case is not that analogous to either of this countries of course….. but I think what monarchists (whether fervent or armchair) tend to forget is that the supposed popularity of the institution of the monarchy in the UK may be much more fragile than they imagine.

As events after the mass hysteria surrounding Diana’s death shows, the monarchy is far from infallible. Many instinctive republicans do actually feel a measure of respect for the current monarch, and are capable of separating that from their distaste for the institution and all the crap that goes along with it. I doubt the figures will look as good for George VII / Charles III. Constitutional monarchies remain popular in Denmark, Norway, Sweden and the Netherlands… but they aren’t encumbered with a lot of the baggage ours appears to have.

@24

Er sorry #15, #16, #17 but it’s you who are coming across as stupid, brainless and indeed morons. For example the people being surveyed by ICM for the Guardian were asked “When the Queen abdicates or dies, what do you think should happen next?” They were being asked what they thought should happen not what would happen. The third option aside from Charles and William was “Britain should elect a head of state and become a Republic instead of having a new monarch.” Presumably you think the 10% who chose that are stupid and brainless as well.

Who said we were referencing the survey results? Do you think the “I’m a monarchist but think William ought to be king next instead cos I like him more” position didn’t exist prior to this poll or something?

As it happens I wouldn’t even rely on Charles bringing about the end of the monarchy. For example YouGov asked a similar question and got a similar response here

Where those surveyed aware of Charles’ intentions to be more ‘presidential’?
Imagine this but with a bit more oompff behind him. Will the British public appreciate the change from a passive monarch to an active one? I know I wouldn’t rely on the result of any YouGov polls now as to what the public might think once he’s been on the throne a while.

56. Robin Levett

What people tend to forget in this debate is that we haven’t had a monarch (in the absolute, divine right to rule sense) for 800-odd years. Those who say that Liz is OK, but look what George VII has said what he’ll do, are forgetting political and legal realities. The House of Commons has a history of “losing” monarchs who overstep the mark – some with extreme prejudice, others with less – and replacing them with more congenial candidates.

An elective presidency would have apparent democratic legitimacy that the present constitutional monarchy cannot take for granted. Within that legitimacy would lie the seeds of conflict between the presidency and the legislature. To take just one example; if the President has the current powers of the monarchy, s/he would have the powers to decide both whom to appoint Prime Minister, and the power to refuse Royal Assent to legislation. In both cases, the constitutional monarch, by convention, accepts the will of Parliament. An elected president could in a close Parliament, consistently with his or her democratic mandate, insist on their own choice of PM and make it stick by threatening to block the legislation of any alternative. Is that more or less democratic than the current position; and is it likely to be more or less effective as a system of government?

I am not wedded to monarchy; it may however be the least of current potential evils. Certainly any presidential replacement would have to be very carefully thought through, and those who assert the supremacy of Parliament would have to accept that that would be reduced by any elected presidency.

57. Merrymaker

@54
I accept that Italy and Greece adopted republics after a referendum, and that was a peaceful act of political will, but immediately prior to the referendum, in both cases, there had been a dictatorship not a Monarchy. I still maintain that there is no case where a Monarchy has been replaced by a Republic without there being some form of civic disturbance.

If the choice for many on reflection is between a Monarchy and the like of a President Blair flitting about the world starting wars while declaring that we can’t stop modernisation, I’m very unsuprised that a majority vote to retain the Monarchy.

Oliver Cromwell, by the way, was the greatest Englishman who ever lived

Support for the monarchy waxes and wanes depending on the popularity of the monarchs themselves. At this point in time, we happen to have a reasonably popular and non-dysfunctional crop of Royals, but this might not always be the case, and support for them could drop off quite sharply.

An interesting fact is that republicanism reached a height of popularity in the Victorian era around the 1870s, at which point Queen Victoria had become a virtual recluse following the death of Prince Albert and had withdrawn from public life. Joseph Chamberlain (father of Neville) wrote, in 1871: ‘The Republic must come, and at the rate at which we are moving, it will come in our generation.’

It reached another high point in the 1990s when the Diana debacle was at its height. Who can say what effect Charles will have when he finally gets to the throne!

Yes, Chris another Cromwell is what we need.

Firstly, to guide us back to the path of puritanical righteousness, and secondly to sort out those troublesome Celts.

The Queen clearly doesn’t have the stomach for the action required.

I switched on BBC1 a couple of hours ago to see the start of the flotilla thing, and that was just too much fawning and fussing like they do on The One Show.
So I’ll conceed that that’s a bit nausiating. It might be better to watch the quick highlights on the news later tonight. Also, where’s the shame with these ”royal correspondents” like Nicholas Witchell? He was a serious journalist once.
It is lowest common denominator stuff and I can see why many hate it.
But the people like it apparently – just like they like the X-Factor and Michael Barrymore.
I can’t undrstand it myself, but there’s no point making a fuss.

63. Shatterface

Oliver Cromwell, by the way, was the greatest Englishman who ever lived

The Irish might beg to differ.

65. Chaise Guevara

@ 52 P Ve M

““We have made progress in this direction” doesn’t imply “we ought to continue making progress in this direction”.”

Agreed. I, however, DO feel we should continue to make progress in this direction. The reason I described things in terms of progress at all (rather than saying “we are a democracy) was to suggest that our setup for head of state hasn’t kept up with our other political changes.

“And of course, there’s a good argument to be made that a lot of our “positive progress” has come about — and, more importantly, lasted — because it was carried out piecemeal and organically, rather than as an attempt to remodel the country based on first principles. (Cf. Revolutionary France, every communist regime.)”

And some positive progress has come around rather more quickly through remodelling. Cf. Revolutionary USA. In this case, nevertheless, it has been piecemeal, over hundreds of years. Absolute(ish) monarch -> Magna Carta -> Cromwell -> today’s system. So we’ve got one, at most two, piecemeal stages left to go.

“Rejecting the monarchy because it doesn’t fit in with abstract principles about equality or progress or whatever is in fact the sort of attitude which, if taken to its conclusions, tends to retard progress rather than advance it.”

On what basis?

66. Chaise Guevara

@ 43 Jack C

“a) To what extent has our constitutional monarchy protected us from revolution, over-powerful presidents and other similar calamities? ”

Historical guessing; unknowable. Do you have good reason to believe that a hereditary leader is better than a non-hereditrary one in this case?

“To what extent does her non-partisan position help relationships with other countries? (Including the Commonwealth).”

Probably a fair bit, but that doesn’t seem relevant. You can replace her with a non-partisan president. And…

“”Being non-partisan is plus side of hereditary accession (in this case).”

How so? There’s no magic force that makes hereditary leaders neutral. See Cylux’s response for more details.

“Perhaps some powers of patronage would sit better with the monarch than the governing party?”

Or, you know, a president.

@57 merrymaker

“I still maintain that there is no case where a Monarchy has been replaced by a Republic without there being some form of civic disturbance.”

Possibly so; however I’m not sure that your point is all that convincing, even if true. Most of the monarchies in Europe fell in the aftermath of WW1 (compare the map of Europe showing monarchies pre 1914 and in 1919). Those that remained were retained, and survived long term, mostly did so by virtue of the fact that they were actually popular with their people (the UK, Scandinavia, Netherlands) and in societies which were least prone to revolutionary change.

If and when Australia, Canada, NZ and potentially an independent Scotland voted to become republics, the chances of it provoking civil unrest are remote to non-existent. The monarchies in Italy and Greece were tainted by their association with past regimes, and even in spain the restoration of the monarchy post franco is regarded as the exception that proves the rule rather than a strong argument for the restoration of the Hapsburgs, Bonapartes, Hohenzollerns etc.

The British monarchy will survive as long as few enough of its subjects find it irksome enough to overthrow, whether by storming the gates of Buckingham Palace (which seems rather unlikely), or simply packing them off to retirement somewhere far away post a referendum recognising what an anachronism they have become.

The fact that we aren’t there test, doesn’t mean the putative George VII or William V should bank on seeing their silver jubilees, still less their diamond ones.

Cromwell abolished one monarchy to erect another. The last thing we want is a Lord Protector.

A question to all the monarchists, however: if you were designing a constitution from scratch, would you make it a monarchy? If not, stop pretending you seriously think it’s a better system, and admit you only support it because scrapping it would be more trouble than it’s worth at present (a perfectly reasonable position).

Tony Blair did for the prospect of presidential government what the bankers did for Free Market Capitalism

70. the a&e charge nurse
71. Merrymaker

@66
Thank you for your response. I have been looking at how we replace our existing Monarchy by an elected President (rather then a restoration of a Monarchy). We are both agreed that a violent overthrow is unlikely in the UK. But the peaceful alternative will always throw up the President Blair or President Thatcher question. I fully accept that Australia, Canada etc may become republics in due course – that has not happened yet, but there is always a first time. Scotland is interesting. Salmond has already said that the Queen will remain Head of State if Scotland becomes independent. Could they follow the Irish route? For what its worth, my own view is that the Monarchy will continue but change. Its residual powers will be removed, it will be the national figurehead, and the hangers on will reduce in number. It will become more like the Scandinavian model. If this happens, there will be even less agitation than now for a change.

72. Robin Levett

@Makhno #67:

A question to all the monarchists, however: if you were designing a constitution from scratch, would you make it a monarchy? If not, stop pretending you seriously think it’s a better system, and admit you only support it because scrapping it would be more trouble than it’s worth at present (a perfectly reasonable position).

I don’t know whether you’d count me as a monarchist, given my comment above, but:

I can consider a non-monarchical system of government to be the ideal system in the abstract – and therefore the one that I’d design if starting from scratch – but still take the view that for the UK in current conditions a monarchy in its current form is the least-worst system. There is no inherent contradiction between those positions. It’s not a question of whether it’s “more trouble than it’s worth”; it’s a question of whether the outcome would indeed be a better system.

Merrymaker @70:

“But the peaceful alternative will always throw up the President Blair or President Thatcher question.”

Which needs only to be responded to as follows:

1) If Blair/Thatcher/insert boogie-person of choice here were to be President, they at least would have been elected. Democracy (as Mencken put it) means giving the people what they want – good and hard.
2) If it were a non-executive presidency, then at least any potential harm could be minimised.

Plus ain’t presidents elected directly? Whereas prime ministers are not. The better comparison would surely be President Boris or President Ken…

75. MarkAustin

Merrymaker

On your question as to how we get rid of the Monarchy, the answer is simple: ever since the Glorious Revolution, the House of Commons has to vote to confirm the next King or Queen. In the past this has been nearly unanimous. However, if after a bad reign by King Charles (or whatever he calls himself), the House decided it didn’t want a next King, it can vote against (I assume that a wave of popular sentiment after the death of Queen Elizabeth will sweep Charles in) . What would happen next is another matter.

@70

As post no. 72 notes, any President in the UK (absent some total overhaul of the system of government, which is hardly likely given our history or the kind of circumstance we are talking about without violent or revolutionary change) will be a figurehead, not an executive head of state a la France or the USA. It is therefore possible to foresee a President, whether directly elected, or “appointed” by parliament, who is an elder statesman (or woman), or some other worthy.

It may not be a perfect system, but it does at least have the merit of being someone who is positively chosen, whose record can be dissected, and who can be ejected from office in the event of them not performing or doing something stupid or illegal.

Perhaps the Speaker of the House should become the Head of state? Or the most senior member of the (hopefully reformed) Lords?

As for Scotland, whilst I sense less enthusiasm in Scotland for the monarchy as an institution, it is hardly a burning issue given the upcoming referendum. Salmond is merely reacting to (yet another) ridiculous Unionist scare story. Much like independence, whether Scotland remains as a monarchy is unto the Scottish people to decide, and I’d wager they are more likely than their English cousins to opt for a republic, even if not in the short term.

I seem to recall that the last monarch to be crowned in Scotland was Charles II….perhaps Prince Charles could follow the tradition post a “yes” vote in the independence referendum in 2014? ;)

58

‘If the choice for many on reflection is between a Monarchy and the like of a President Blair flitting about the world starting wars……’

That honour was reserved for Primeminister Blair and status quo.

We need to be more like the French – we both had revolutions that led to the establishment of republics and both suffered restorations but eventually they got their republic back, whereas we just couldn’t be arsed trying to improve our country and let the monarchy ruin it.

79. Merrymaker

@73
Perhaps I did not make my point clear. If we already have a presidential system then democratic choice will prevail. My point is about transition. Those who oppose the abolition of the Monarchy will always say ‘but what if we get President Blair’ or ‘… President Thatcher’. Better to stick with the non political Monarchy. Stick with nurse for fear of worse, is a potent slogan.
@75
Yes there could be a vote not to confirm a new Monarch. I think it almost as unlikely as a violent overthrow of the Monarchy. And you do ask the question – what happens next? Good question.

Merrymaker @79:

No, I understood your point perfectly well. You don’t seem have have noted mine, in that you counter the “President Blair/Thatcher/Clarkson” argument by pointing out to people that at least they would have a say in the matter and that mechanisms would be put in place legitimately to get rid of someone who wasn’t up to the job without having to wait for the bloke with the scythe to come along or for some dubious pretext to be used to do the job (e.g. 1936 and all that).

81. Robin Levett

Just one thought to throw into the mix; at present, given that the monarchy survives only upon sufferance of the Commons, and the present Queen is at present clearly popular, it is arguable that the monarchy is at least in part democratic. Taking the long view, if the monarchy gets up the nose of the public, the public will get rid of it. the monarch for the time being, therefore, has to retain a form of democratic legitimacy to survive as such.

The problem with replacing the monarch with a presidency is that the president won’t have to take a long view. The president can, and will, use the pretty significant powers that at present by convention the monarch does not use. It is true that the monarch isn’t currently an executive – but s/he still has the legal power to reign as such, and the constraint preventing this is convention and the need to retain public support.

@81

I’m not entirely convinced by the argument that the monarchy is already quasi-democratic. Fears have already been voiced that George VII will be more prone to make (probably ill-judged) interventions on matters close to his heart in a way the current queen would not, and has not.

A president may not have to take a long view (but one could argue that is the job of a sovereign parliament?), but it seems unlikely that a future president would be allowed to retain the vestigial powers and influence that the monarch enjoys. It is high time we ditched the ancestral cringe which has allowed so much of our crypto-medieval governance to remain centuries past its sell by date.

Ever since the restoration of the monarchy under Charles II and the glorious revolution of 1688, we have as a people tolerated much more than we should have from a series of pretty iffy monarchs in the name of stability, and because the ruling classes liked it that way; it’s the modern equivalent of bread and circuses. I have a feeling that taking the long view, our society would be a lot more equal, egalitarian and less class ridden if we’d had a few more revolutions.

Robin Levett @81:

“…it is arguable that the monarchy is at least in part democratic”

‘Arguable’, but not true. Parliament will not veto any prospective monarch simply out of precedent. I’d remind you that Parliament isn’t even permitted to debate the monarchy and its doing except in the most anodyne and sycophantic terms.

“The president can, and will, use the pretty significant powers that at present by convention the monarch does not use.”

Not if it’s a non-executive presidency with those powers currently held under the legal fiction of ‘the Crown in Parliament’ being brought out into the open where they belong and subject to proper control and scrutiny, as they should be. It wouldn’t be difficult to do that in any practical or constitutional sense; the main obstacles would be inertia and administrative obscurantism.

Chaise @ 65:

“And some positive progress has come around rather more quickly through remodelling. Cf. Revolutionary USA.”

The American Revolution was actually surprisingly conservative, given that it was largely a reaction to changes in British administration which would reduce the amount of self-governance enjoyed by the colonies. A lot of the rebels’ rhetoric was about preserving their pre-existing rights of Englishmen which were under threat from the Crown, not about trying to remodel the country based upon first principles.

“On what basis?”

On the basis that human beings aren’t entirely rational and consistent, and attempts to come up with a new way of running and organising the country based on philosphical first principles don’t really take this into account. Hence they end up working against the grain of human nature, and therefore failing.

Makhno @ 68:

“A question to all the monarchists, however: if you were designing a constitution from scratch, would you make it a monarchy?”

I probably would, actually. Although the thought experiment isn’t really very useful, since we’re not designing a constituion from scratch, so what we’d do in one situation is necessarily a very good guide to what we should do in the other.

86. Robin Levett

@The Judge #83:

“…it is arguable that the monarchy is at least in part democratic”

‘Arguable’, but not true. Parliament will not veto any prospective monarch simply out of precedent. I’d remind you that Parliament isn’t even permitted to debate the monarchy and its doing except in the most anodyne and sycophantic terms.

Let me put it more bluntly; the monarchy has survived because the monarchs themselves are in general more popular than their governments. Once that changes, if it does, the monarchy becomes vulnerable. To that extent- to the extent that it depends upon the will of the people to survive – it is democratic.

“The president can, and will, use the pretty significant powers that at present by convention the monarch does not use.”

Not if it’s a non-executive presidency with those powers currently held under the legal fiction of ‘the Crown in Parliament’ being brought out into the open where they belong and subject to proper control and scrutiny, as they should be. It wouldn’t be difficult to do that in any practical or constitutional sense; the main obstacles would be inertia and administrative obscurantism.

So your idea is to replace a monarchy with an even more powerful executive? We won’t have the “President Blair” problem, because we’ll give that power to Prime Minister Blair?

If you don’t mean that, what do you mean by the rather woolly words “with those powers currently held under the legal fiction of ‘the Crown in Parliament’ being brought out into the open where they belong and subject to proper control and scrutiny”.

Robin Levett @86:

“So your idea is to replace a monarchy with an even more powerful executive?”

Nowhere have I said or suggested any such thing.

“If you don’t mean that, what do you mean by the rather woolly words “with those powers currently held under the legal fiction of ‘the Crown in Parliament’ being brought out into the open where they belong and subject to proper control and scrutiny”.”

Damnit, man, I was trying to be concise!

Simply that all reserve powers under “CiP” currently used by the Executive should be subject to proper scrutiny by the Legislature. In fact, I think it’s long overdue that all powers held by the Executive should be subject, etc.

@87

“Simply that all reserve powers under “CiP” currently used by the Executive should be subject to proper scrutiny by the Legislature. In fact, I think it’s long overdue that all powers held by the Executive should be subject, etc.”

Exactly. given our history and the parliamentary system, any elected “resident” (whether elected directly by the people or indirectly in parliament) would be a figure head with ceremonial duties. A non-executive president will have LESS power than the current monarch, because those which are currently available to the monarch will be removed.

Of course, you can expect the usual fusty brigades of blimpish monarchists to complain loudly about the attack on our historic constitution (such as it is)….. which in my book would be another reason for a republic of course!

89. Nathan Dowdell

Honestly, given all the corruption and scandal that the government has generated in the last few years, I find it difficult to trust in the democratically-elected to do anything beyond serve their own self-interest.

The system as it exists now isn’t perfect, in any way, shape or form… but that is not purely because we have an unelected monarch, and honestly, I feel that the monarchy is the least of the problems here. In short, I don’t think that pulling out the monarchy and replacing it with an equivalent presidency solves anything.

90. Robin Levett

@The Judge #87:

Simply that all reserve powers under “CiP” currently used by the Executive should be subject to proper scrutiny by the Legislature. In fact, I think it’s long overdue that all powers held by the Executive should be subject, etc.

Indeed; but those powers actually exercised by the Executive are not those retained by the monarch.

91. Chaise Guevara

@ 84 P Ve M

“The American Revolution was actually surprisingly conservative, given that it was largely a reaction to changes in British administration which would reduce the amount of self-governance enjoyed by the colonies. A lot of the rebels’ rhetoric was about preserving their pre-existing rights of Englishmen which were under threat from the Crown, not about trying to remodel the country based upon first principles.”

The American revolution wrested control of a huge country from a foreign power and created a new if derivative system of government for the fledgling nation. By that standard, replacing the Queen with a president is ULTRA-conservative. You can’t have this both ways; if the American revolution doesn’t count as “remodelling” then nor does the aim of UK republicanism.

“On the basis that human beings aren’t entirely rational and consistent, and attempts to come up with a new way of running and organising the country based on philosphical first principles don’t really take this into account.”

That’s one hell of a sweeping statement. I can think of philosophies that fail to take human nature into account, especially any philosophy that requires humans to be automatically orderly or selfless to succeed (some forms of communism and libertarianism qualify). That doesn’t mean ALL such ideas make the same mistake. This sounds like a convenient argument that allows you to oppose all political progress without addressing the nature of the proposed change.

“Hence they end up working against the grain of human nature, and therefore failing.”

How is republicanism against the grain of human nature, how would you predict it to fail, and how do you reconcile this with the many successful republics the world over, including the current Top Nation?

Or, if you didn’t mean this to apply to republicanism, why is it relevant here?


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Liberal Conspiracy

    Who still wants a Monarchy? Er, most of us http://t.co/ZyWLlFxp

  2. Paul Sandars

    Who still wants a Monarchy? Er, most of us http://t.co/ZyWLlFxp

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    Who still wants a Monarchy? Er, most of us http://t.co/ZyWLlFxp

  4. Jason Brickley

    Who still wants a Monarchy? Er, most of us http://t.co/OsEM7Qwb

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    Who still wants a Monarchy? Er, most of us | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/0A9XFZC5 via @libcon

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    Who still wants a Monarchy? Er, most of us | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/2CfTlW2x via @libcon

  7. leftlinks

    Liberal Conspiracy – Who still wants a Monarchy? Er, most of us http://t.co/PLuoKktj

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    Who still wants a Monarchy? Er, most of us | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/28XS7dT3 [Yes 'democracy' is already a private not a public Co.]

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    Who still wants a Monarchy? Er, most of us

    http://t.co/1ixwNMoF

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    Interesting blog from @leobarasi on public opinion on the monarchy: http://t.co/F51efDQ4. Is Jubilee a PR exercise for Charles & succession?

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