OT: Happy Canada Day

Graydon graydon at marost.ca
Sun Jul 4 17:09:11 EDT 2010


On Sun, Jul 04, 2010 at 03:14:23PM -0400, Daniel J. Matyola scripsit:
> "The Queen is the Queen by right of Parliament, _not_ right of birth."
> 
> Really?  And you believe that?  They just HAPPENED to pick the
> daughter of the last King?  What an extraordinary coincidence!

If Parliament says she stops being Queen, she stops being Queen.  This
happened to her Uncle Edward.  It could certainly happen to her and if
the general run of the British public weren't generally of a mind to see
Princess Di's kids get the throne it might well have.

Way back -- in the days of Alfred born in Wantage, way back -- being
king rested on three things; divine approval, the consent of the
governed, and descent.  In France -- where about the same thing, for
about the same reasons -- held true at that time, "divine favour" and
"descent" won out, and you eventually wind up at the Terror after some
really extremely statistically improbable runs of male primogeniture.

In England, up until German George, you get something like half of the
kings (and Queen) being the son or grandson of the previous king; you
get a remarkable lack of associated piety, cult sites, and so on (mostly
due to Devil Henry, Henry II; not only did he have turbulent priest
issues, it appears absolutely no one was capable of believing in his
personal piety in any way, nor that of his sons, and by the time that
was done with it was a remarkably secular monarchy) and you *do* get the
consent of the governed, in the form of the approval of Parliament,
becoming the one thing that matters.  ("If Parliament sets the crown on
a stook, I will fight for the stook", and that's from the time of Henry
VII, fifteenth century.)

The remarkably good order since Victoria is mostly just a side effect of
the idea of not giving the constitutional monarchy any real power beyond
moral suasion reducing the political focus on the office.

-- Graydon




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