The Monarchy

116 posts / 0 new
Last post
bagkitty bagkitty's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Tigana wrote:

bagkitty wrote:

 

"Fidel... how about if we went back to sacrificing them annually to ensure good crops?"

 ~ grin!

I thought that was virgins and nobody ever accused the royal family of being that...

.

The sacrifice of royalty is undertaken as means of ensuring fertility (at least that is my understanding of Celtic mythology). The Winter King is sacrificed to ensure good crops in the spring. Not sure where the sacrifice of virgins creeps in, maybe Euripides -- and I thought Iphigenia's virginity was incidental, that she was sacrificed to so Artemis would let the winds blow again -- Agamemnon being punished for his hubris, not an attempt to ensure good crops.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Found this open thread, rather than start a new one...

Réseau de résistance du Québecois plans to protest royal visit by Will and Kate

excerpt:

QUEBEC — The Liberal government of Premier Jean Charest plans to welcome Prince William, second in line to succeed Elizabeth II as Canada’s head of state, and his wife Kate Middleton, when they visit Montreal and Quebec City in July.

But the Réseau de résistance du Québecois, a militant separatist group, is planning to demonstrate in Quebec City with the goal of making the visit of William and Kate “as disagreeable as possible.”

RRQ spokesman Julien Gaudreau said the group plans a peaceful protest, avoiding a repeat of the violent confrontations in 1964, when Quebec City police battled with separatist demonstrators during a visit by Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Philip.

Gaudreau added that a majority of Quebecers oppose the monarchy and the group would have no objections to a private visit by the couple, but there is a clear intention by authorities to promote the monarchy, he said.

excerpt:

As long as Elizabeth remains Canada’s head of state, members of the Quebec National Assembly must swear an oath of fidelity and allegiance to the queen before taking their seats. “I don’t say it with pleasure,” Beaudoin confessed. “I whisper it.”

Lefauve

Monarchy is a big waste of cash that is spend on expensive clothing

There is a zillion thing that are more usefull tha that.

Thing like fighting aid, secure water supply to village.

So big buck spend to say :"It so Cuteeeeeeeee!"

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I agree with Lefauve. The Monarchy is not just wasteful, but has a terrible history of empire and enormous baggage behind it. Seeing the crowds at the royal wedding made me cringe - where were the protestors, if any?  And bringing the royals to Quebec is a poke in our eye.

Frmrsldr

I haven't seen one good argument for keeping the monarchy,

just a few lame excuses.

The history of the British crown/monarchy with its connection to colonialism/imperialism is a major source of embarrassment.

So too is having a head of state of a foreign government as Canada's head of state.

Quebeckers seem to get this.

The Irish seem to get this.

All of Britain's former African colonies seem to get this.

All of Britain's former Asian colonies seem to get this.

If Quebec wishes for another Sovereignty Referendum, I say by all means.

While we're at it, let's have a Canada-wide referendum on abolishing the monarchy - so that all of Canada can be sovereign.

Since the 1990s, surveys have shown that a majority of Canadians want the monarchy abolished.

Lefauve

Vive la république

Justice, Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité.

Frmrsldr

Lefauve wrote:

Vive la république Justice, Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité.

Yeah! I second that!Cool

Uncle John

Yeah. Get rid of the Monarchy.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

I enter this with some trepidation because I don't want to be stalked across other threads on other subjects as happened the last time.

However desirable it is in principle to abolish the monarchy, it is not a simple process - and anyone who implies it is simple is either deluded or dishonest.

As it stands, abolition would require the consent of the Commons and Senate as well as every provincial legistalture.  That would be difficult, but arguably possible.

The difficulty is what one replaces it with.  The current Constitution ascribes virtually absolute power to "the Crown."  By convention, the Crown (practically speaking the Governor General) only exercises those powers on the advice of the leader of the government and, on legislative matters, with the advice and consent of Parliament.  Currently, the Governor General is appointed by the monarch on the advice of the Prime Minister - meaning that the office is essentially the Prime Minister's gift.  Simply abolishing the monarchy with no other change leaves the office of the Governor General (presumably with a new name such as President) having notionally broad powers constrained only by convention - assuming that the office continues to be an appointment by the Prime Minister.

But the Governor General does have the capacity to act as a check on the Prime Minister under certain circumstances.  rguable the incumbent failed in that regard in granting Harper prorogation a couple of years ago, but there have been other cases wheree at least the threat of the vice-regal exercising the reserved powers has served to constrain a first minister.  If the Governor General is a creature of the Prime Minister pure and simple, would any Governor General even consider using the reserved powers under any circumstances?

No, having a head of state appointed directly by the head of government is a non starter.  So then what?  How do we select the new President?  Bearing in mind, of course, that a democratically elected President (assuming no other major rejigging of the Constitution) would have almost absolute power - and no reason not to exercise that power fully, without even the constraint of Parliament.

This was where the Australian attempt to abolish the monarchy failed - the proposed manner of selecting the new head of state was not acceptable to the majority of voters in the referendum.

Now, the mere fact that it is difficult, of course, is not an argument against abolition per se.  But the difficulty of the task, taken with the relative irrelevance of the office as currently structured, constitute a powerful argument for having this item so far down the priority list that it would be unlikely to see the light of day any time soon.

How much difference would it make to the average Canadian to have government business transacted in the name of President David Johnston rather than in the name of Elizabeth II?

Given that there would still be a head of state (presumably the Governor General restyled as President as well as the Lieutenant Governors restyled, perhaps, as Governors), the cost saving would be negligible.  A 2008 study suggested the total cost of the monarchy to Canada amounted to about $1.10 per person per year - but since that number included the costs of the Governor General and Lieutenant Governors, very little of that would be saved.

In essence, abolishing the monarchy would expend a great deal of political capital and constitutional energy on a purely symbolic issue that has virtually no effect on real people, with virtually no practical benefit to be found.

I can think of any number of better ways to expend that political capital and that constitutional energy on matters that would actually have tangible benefits for Canadians.

I await the personal attacks.

Lefauve

Malcolm wrote:

I enter this with some trepidation because I don't want to be stalked across other threads on other subjects as happened the last time.

However desirable it is in principle to abolish the monarchy, it is not a simple process - and anyone who implies it is simple is either deluded or dishonest.

As it stands, abolition would require the consent of the Commons and Senate as well as every provincial legistalture.  That would be difficult, but arguably possible.

The difficulty is what one replaces it with.  The current Constitution ascribes virtually absolute power to "the Crown."  By convention, the Crown (practically speaking the Governor General) only exercises those powers on the advice of the leader of the government and, on legislative matters, with the advice and consent of Parliament.  Currently, the Governor General is appointed by the monarch on the advice of the Prime Minister - meaning that the office is essentially the Prime Minister's gift.  Simply abolishing the monarchy with no other change leaves the office of the Governor General (presumably with a new name such as President) having notionally broad powers constrained only by convention - assuming that the office continues to be an appointment by the Prime Minister.

But the Governor General does have the capacity to act as a check on the Prime Minister under certain circumstances.  rguable the incumbent failed in that regard in granting Harper prorogation a couple of years ago, but there have been other cases wheree at least the threat of the vice-regal exercising the reserved powers has served to constrain a first minister.  If the Governor General is a creature of the Prime Minister pure and simple, would any Governor General even consider using the reserved powers under any circumstances?

No, having a head of state appointed directly by the head of government is a non starter.  So then what?  How do we select the new President?  Bearing in mind, of course, that a democratically elected President (assuming no other major rejigging of the Constitution) would have almost absolute power - and no reason not to exercise that power fully, without even the constraint of Parliament.

This was where the Australian attempt to abolish the monarchy failed - the proposed manner of selecting the new head of state was not acceptable to the majority of voters in the referendum.

Now, the mere fact that it is difficult, of course, is not an argument against abolition per se.  But the difficulty of the task, taken with the relative irrelevance of the office as currently structured, constitute a powerful argument for having this item so far down the priority list that it would be unlikely to see the light of day any time soon.

How much difference would it make to the average Canadian to have government business transacted in the name of President David Johnston rather than in the name of Elizabeth II?

Given that there would still be a head of state (presumably the Governor General restyled as President as well as the Lieutenant Governors restyled, perhaps, as Governors), the cost saving would be negligible.  A 2008 study suggested the total cost of the monarchy to Canada amounted to about $1.10 per person per year - but since that number included the costs of the Governor General and Lieutenant Governors, very little of that would be saved.

In essence, abolishing the monarchy would expend a great deal of political capital and constitutional energy on a purely symbolic issue that has virtually no effect on real people, with virtually no practical benefit to be found.

I can think of any number of better ways to expend that political capital and that constitutional energy on matters that would actually have tangible benefits for Canadians.

I await the personal attacks.

Ithink you got haft the truth the other haft is that she tacitly refuse to exercise her power and delegate everything to common house. And there are alo internationnal right. The kosovo case is agood example. Willingly or not she will agree with any voting

Frmrsldr

Malcolm wrote:

However desirable it is in principle to abolish the monarchy, it is not a simple process - and anyone who implies it is simple is either deluded or dishonest.

I think the way you present your following case is disengenuous.

Malcolm wrote:

The difficulty is what one replaces it with.  The current Constitution ascribes virtually absolute power to "the Crown."  By convention, the Crown (practically speaking the Governor General) only exercises those powers on the advice of the leader of the government and, on legislative matters, with the advice and consent of Parliament.  Currently, the Governor General is appointed by the monarch on the advice of the Prime Minister - meaning that the office is essentially the Prime Minister's gift. 

When was the Guvnah last "appointed by the monarch"? Certainly not the last couple of times.

Malcolm wrote:

... As it stands, abolition would require the consent of the Commons and Senate as well as every provincial legistalture.  That would be difficult, but arguably possible...

The Statute of Westminster and other international laws, conventions and protocols etc., and the case of Kosovo provide means around that. Quebec has not ratified the Constitution thereby calling into question whether the Constitution is even (properly speaking) law.

Malcolm wrote:

Simply abolishing the monarchy with no other change leaves the office of the Governor General (presumably with a new name such as President) having notionally broad powers constrained only by convention - assuming that the office continues to be an appointment by the Prime Minister.

But the Governor General does have the capacity to act as a check on the Prime Minister under certain circumstances.  rguable the incumbent failed in that regard in granting Harper prorogation a couple of years ago, but there have been other cases wheree at least the threat of the vice-regal exercising the reserved powers has served to constrain a first minister.  If the Governor General is a creature of the Prime Minister pure and simple, would any Governor General even consider using the reserved powers under any circumstances?

No, having a head of state appointed directly by the head of government is a non starter.  So then what?  How do we select the new President?  Bearing in mind, of course, that a democratically elected President (assuming no other major rejigging of the Constitution) would have almost absolute power - and no reason not to exercise that power fully, without even the constraint of Parliament.

This was where the Australian attempt to abolish the monarchy failed - the proposed manner of selecting the new head of state was not acceptable to the majority of voters in the referendum.

Would you advocate that a referendum on Fair Voting in addition to asking "Yes or No" on "Do you want Fair Voting (or Proportional Representation)?" also ask: "If "Yes," what system would you like?" and then have it provide some information on some/all of the different kinds of Fair Voting and some/all the various nuances these systems have?

To do so would grossly bias the votes against them (Fair Voting or in this case, abolishing the monarchy.)

Your binary option of a referendum that includes a "Yes or No" followed by a "If yes, what do you prefer?" question is where you are disingenuous and betrays your sympathy for monarchy.

That is why the "Abolish the Monarchy" referendum in Australia failed, not because a majority of Australians want to keep the monarchy.

The way around this is to uncouple/delink the two questions/issues and keep the referendum to the single question: "Do You Wish to Abolish the Monarchy. Yes or No?"

After the issue is decided, if the people have chosen to abolish the monarchy, then a panel or commission can be assembled to get input from all concerned Canadians and groups etc., as to how to proceed forward from there.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Lefauve, with respect and acknowledging that English is not your first language, I'm not sure what parts of your last post are talking about.  On the matter of the Crown "tacitly refusing to exercize [its] power," I don't really think that is a fair criticism (assuming I understand what you're driving at).  Since the office has no democratic legitimacy, it is generally appropriate that those notional powers be exercised only on advice from the head of government or the legislature.  Exceptions should be in extremis.  I certainly don't want a future Governor General hampering the decisions of a future Layton NDP government.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Fmrsldr, I'm not quite sure why an American cares so much about the quaint eccentricities of our Constitution - especially when he clearly has a very limited grasp on the realities of it.

Frmrsldr

Malcolm wrote:

Fmrsldr, I'm not quite sure why an American cares so much about the quaint eccentricities of our Constitution - especially when he clearly has a very limited grasp on the realities of it.

Does my nationality or place of origin matter?

Would it matter if I was Canadian, British, Irish, (other) European, African, Asian, Latin American, Caribbean or from the Pacific and Oceana?

Sometimes an outsider will debate an issue and bring ideas others would rather not discuss.

Are you really talking about the Canadian Constitution

or are you talking about the psychology of some "small c" conservative possibly monarchist(?) Canadians?

What about the "Abolish the Monarchy" Referendum issues I raised?

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

I'm talking about someone coming in and telling Canadians how to run our own affairs.  In that respect, you are no different than what you accuse Mrs. Battenburg of being (though actually she never tells us what to do).

Your ideas are based on a comic book caricature of Canadian constitutional law.  There really is no point debating this with you since you are only interested in having people agree with all the misinformed blather you post.

Frmrsldr

Malcolm wrote:

I'm talking about someone coming in and telling Canadians how to run our own affairs.  In that respect, you are no different than what you accuse Mrs. Battenburg of being (though actually she never tells us what to do).

Your ideas are based on a comic book caricature of Canadian constitutional law.  There really is no point debating this with you since you are only interested in having people agree with all the misinformed blather you post.

Provide quotes "where I come in and tell Canadians how to run their own affairs."

This is just a discussion about monarchy in general and the implications of the British monarchy being Canada's head of state in specific.

I have described Mrs. Hanover/Saxe-Gotha-Coburg/Battenburg/Windsor's (whatever her family name is) job as hereditary and therefore unrepresentative, unelected, undemocratic and inegalitarian.

What I post makes me that?

On the contrary,

having people agree with me is not nearly as interesting and informative

as having people disagree/discuss issues with me.

What a bunch of crap.

What a cop out.

I expected better from you than that.

Bacchus

Ahh helpful Yank to tell us how to run our country. So helpful in telling us how wrong we are and uncapable

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Oh, for goodness sakes. We're talking principle here, and it doesn't matter a fig who comes in and argues the case. Get a grip.

Slumberjack

Then what's all of this yank this and yank that across these threads?  Indeed it does seem to matter.  Are you not reading the tone of such sentiments?

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Meanwhile, I think someone made reference to this without a link, and I just happened to stumble across this...

Harper nixes Canadian debate on monarchy succession

excerpt:

Harper was responding to a simmering debate launched earlier this year in Britain — and revived this week in British news reports — about whether women should have equal status with men in the line to the throne.

The Conservative leader said Canada’s position is that the issue shouldn’t be on the table.

“The successor to the throne is a man. The next successor to the throne is a man,” Harper said Monday, referring to Prince Charles and Prince William — first and second in line to the throne that the Queen has occupied since 1952.

“I don’t think Canadians want to open a debate on the monarchy or constitutional matters at this time,” Harper added. “That’s our position, and I just don’t see that as a priority for Canadians right now, at all.”

The Conservative leader’s statement could, in effect, scuttle the recent bid by a group of British MPs to “modernize” the 1701 Act of Settlement to give women and Catholics equal status to men and non-Catholics in the line of succession.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Yes, I've seen those comments, and I usually roll my eyes and move on. I called it out on this thread because it's derailing the conversation. I think the Mods should step in.

 

ETA: my position is argue the case on its merits, don't shoot the messenger.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Malcolm wrote:

Fmrsldr, I'm not quite sure why an American cares so much about the quaint eccentricities of our Constitution - especially when he clearly has a very limited grasp on the realities of it.

FWIW, I appreciate the presence of Fmrsld on babble. Another voice from outside the country is always welcome in my view, even if at times we might not agree.

Slumberjack

Malcolm wrote:
Fmrsldr, I'm not quite sure why an American cares so much about the quaint eccentricities of our Constitution - especially when he clearly has a very limited grasp on the realities of it.

Be that as it may, there's been no shortage of criticism around these parts when it pertains to all things American.  On the face of it, it has all the appearance of a rather unsustainable provincial view to suggest that our system of hereditary tabloid personalities is beyond external criticism.

Lard Tunderin Jeezus Lard Tunderin Jeezus's picture

No one is saying Fmrsldr doesn't belong here, but the fact is, he does seem to lack an understanding of the nuances of parliamentary democracy, and a historical construct of its development in Canada.

BTW, I wholeheartedly agree with Malcolm's PoV on the subject at hand. Talk to me about abolishing the monarchy when you have a real alternative for consideration. In the meantime I'll focus on our current oppressors, rather than those of ancient history.

Ward

Perhaps the only thing better than democracy is enlightened despotism. (But are you feelin'lucky?)

Ward

But I guess that sentiment was already chomped to death in the last thread. I guess I just cast my vote for keeping the Monarchy!

Frmrsldr

Lard Tunderin Jeezus wrote:

... the nuances of parliamentary democracy,...

That should read as "the nuances of constitutional monarchy parliamentary democracies."

There are scores of examples of parliamentary democracies that were part of the British Empire that no longer have the British monarch as their head of state i.e., are not also constitutional monarchies.

Lard Tunderin Jeezus wrote:

... and a historical construct of its development in Canada.

Reinterpreted as the inertia of history.

It's a very British way of doing politics:

"If it ain't bust, why fix it?"

Some people have gotten defensive and emotional about the British monarchy in Canada yet have provided only excuses and no good reasons for keeping it.

As I've said elsewhere, Canadian government, politics and society are not like a house of cards where if the British monarchy card is yanked (yikes, I can see a pun here) out, the whole house will come crashing down.

Sovereignty, representative democracy and egalitarianism are good things.

Not things to be feared.

edmundoconnor

So:

There is a vote on whether to keep the monarchy or not

The vote is to abolish it

And THEN is the time to actually consider what to replace it with?

I disagree with that school of thought completely. There is nothing whatsoever preventing people coming up with a credible, workable alternative before even going down that route.

I'd like to know how the anti-monarchists (I'll start calling them pro-something when they decide what they're pro-) propose to dance around getting the assent of all the provinces and territories. Last time around, that didn't work so well.

I'll sit down and solemnly consider the future of the monarchy when the 1001 other, more pressing, problems facing Canada (and the world) like rampant inequality, turbocapitalism, unrelenting attacks on public healthcare, to name a few, are sorted. In the meantime, I've got work to do.

Frmrsldr

edmundoconnor wrote:

So:

There is a vote on whether to keep the monarchy or not

The vote is to abolish it

And THEN is the time to actually consider what to replace it with?

I disagree with that school of thought completely. There is nothing whatsoever preventing people coming up with a credible, workable alternative before even going down that route.

What prevents people from coming up with a credible, workable alternative is if you attempt to spell out all the alternatives, all their details and subtle nuances, etc., on the Referendum ballot.

This is why the Abolish the Monarchy Referendum failed in Australia, not because the majority of Australians didn't want to abolish the monarchy. This is why referenda on fair voting in the provinces that held them failed - in the case of some (all?) provinces this was combined with a minimum bar of a super majority (in B.C. it was 60%) rather than 50%+1 required for them to pass.

When people vote on something they prefer a simple "Yes or No", "True or False" or multiple choice "a,b,c or d" options.

Make it more complicated than that and people either don't bother to participate or they go with the simplest option which (usually) is to keep the status quo even though that's not what they want nor the best option.

edmundoconnor wrote:

I'd like to know how the anti-monarchists (I'll start calling them pro-something when they decide what they're pro-) propose to dance around getting the assent of all the provinces and territories. Last time around, that didn't work so well.

Small r republicans are pro representative democracy, pro egalitarian and in the case of Canada, pro sovereignty - in favor of Canada having their own head of state - whatever form that may take.

1. The first option has already been discussed on how to get "around the assent of all the provinces and territories." The Referenda: A grass roots approach that first asks Canadians whether they wish to abolish the monarchy, followed by a federal panel or Commission that includes all interested Canadians and groups etc., into the discussion. How can you get all provinces to draft or ratify (an) amendment(s) to the Constitution when Quebec hasn't even ratified the Constitution. With Jack Layton expressing that he is willing to a relook of the Constitution that would be inclusive and make Quebeckers feel welcome to the discussion - this could be an opportunity for Quebec to ratify the Constitution and for new amendments to be made to it. Keep in mind the NDP now has a large number of MPs from Quebec.

2. The Statute of Westminster (1931) established the principle that Britain could no longer pass laws, make amendments to laws or repeal (British laws involuntarily inherited by) Canada. It also established the principle that Canada can make amendments to or repeal (involuntarily inherited British) laws. In this case, abolishing the monarchy (in Canada) is as simple as Canada repealing the (1701) Act of Settlement.

3. A referendum could be held where a "Yes" vote would mean abolishing the monarchy and becoming a fully sovereign nation-state - the principle that was established by Kosovo. This is probably the least likely scenario for Canada abolishing the monarchy. However, should a Sovereignty Referendum be held in Quebec in the near future, it could/very likely would go this way.

edmundoconnor wrote:

I'll sit down and solemnly consider the future of the monarchy when the 1001 other, more pressing, problems facing Canada (and the world) like rampant inequality, turbocapitalism, unrelenting attacks on public healthcare, to name a few, are sorted. In the meantime, I've got work to do.

I hope I have been able to explain that the process is actually easier than you think and that the above quoted sentiments are yet more self-fulfilling prophesies/excuses of "It's too hard. It's too difficult. It's too complicated." and more "inertia of history."

Whenever you do something,

do it not because it is easy

but because it is right.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Boom Boom wrote:

ETA: my position is argue the case on its merits, don't shoot the messenger.

 

For the record, no one is defending the monarchy per se as a desirable institution.  The debatre here is whether or not the largely symbolic office matters enough for its reform to be a priority, given that replacing it is a complicated process, both constitutionally and politically.

Unfortunately, one poster has repeatedly shown that he is not prepared to discuss this matter on its merits, and has engaged in bullying and stalking tactics - including derailing about a dozen threads a few months ago, none of which had anything to do with the monarchy.  He offers up "facts" which are frequently inaccurate and consistently misrepresents the positions other posters have taken.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

I recall once reading that, during the October Revolution, the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church was having a passionate debate about the introduction of having the colours of eucharistic vestments conform to a standard rotation through the liturgical calendar.  As much as I approve of seasonal liturgical colours, I think the Holy Synod could have used their time to better purpose.

Similarly, it seems to me that investing vast amounts of energy in debating the complicated reform of a purely symbolic institution that costs close to nothing might not be the best use of our time when there are real issues to deal with.  Particularly so since no one has offered up any clear or coherent alternative that accounts for the assorted constitutional nuances.

Frmrsldr

Malcolm wrote:

Particularly so since no one has offered up any clear or coherent alternative that accounts for the assorted constitutional nuances.

I'm the one accused of being the Yankee who tells you how to run your own affairs, remember?

How you (i.e., Canadians) decide to fashion your government and society after the British monarchy is abolished is up to you to decide.

I just like to discuss what monarchy is at a theoretical level and the theoretical and practical implications it has on Canada's sovereignty and national psyche.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Theoretically, the Canadian monarchy is a bad thing that ought to be replaced.

Realistically, the Canadian monarchy is a harmless irrelevance and not worth the effort of abolishing.

If you don't like that answer, Fmrsldr, then . . . well, I don't really give a flying fornication whether you like that answer or not.

Frmrsldr

Malcolm wrote:

Theoretically, the Canadian monarchy is a bad thing that ought to be replaced.

Realistically, the Canadian monarchy is a harmless irrelevance and not worth the effort of abolishing.

If you don't like that answer, Fmrsldr, then . . . well, I don't really give a flying fornication whether you like that answer or not.

It has nothing to do in the liking or disliking of an answer.

It's all about whether an answer or argument is any good or not.

As for whether the British monarchy is worth the effort of abolishing, think in terms of the effect it has on the sovereignty of those nation-states that it is (still) the head of state for.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

It has no effect on the sovereignty of those states.  In Canada, she is Queen of Canada.  In New Zealand, she is Queen of New Zealand.  If a dispute arises between Canada and New Zealand, the representatives of HM in right of Canada and of HM in right of New Zealand will hammer it out.  When the UK and Argentina were at war over the Falklands / Malvinas, it did not affect diplomatic relations between Argentina and the other Commonwealth monarchies.  (Although the Argentine Ambassador to Canada declined to attend the ceremony patriating the Constitution because he apparently didn't understand that Mrs. Battenburg was there as Queen of Canada, not as Queen of the UK.)

You really have no clue about our system - which becomes increasingly obvious the more you post.

Personally, I think the White House would look a lot nicer if it were repainted the original pink - which would possibly have the added effect of making US foreign policy less belligerant.  Any American who is not prepared to make this a top priority is clearly a hypocrite, a child and a slave, and it proves that the entire US political system is humiliating, degrading, a corruption and fucked up.

Frmrsldr

Malcolm wrote:

It has no effect on those states.  In Canada, she is Queen of Canada. 

No?

So Trudeau didn't kow tow to the British monarch when he had her sign the Constitution?

It's not embarrassing when foreign delegates who have heads of states that are citizens of their own country and have no allegiance to a foreign power, ask Canadians "You have a foreigner (the British monarch) for a head of state?"

So, I guess the fact that Canadian soldiers who swear an oath of allegiance to the British monarch as their Commander-in-Chief who maim and murder Afghans and Libyans in her name, is o.k?

If the G20 Toronto summit had turned more violent than it did and the British queen in agreement with the Canadian Guvnah Genral and Prime Minister decided to order Canadian soldiers to use lethal force and a number of Canadians and visitors were killed and injured, that would be perfectly alright.

I've been told that new Canadian citizens swear an oath to the British crown/monarchy. So if a situation should ever arise involving Britain and/or British allies stealing Canadian state secrets or acts of sabotage or sedition, I realize the situation is highly hypothetical but still, the British monarch would seek out the employ of new Canadians because they have no legal allegiance to Canada but they do to the British crown/monarch because they are the British crown/monarch's "loyal subjects." But again, you're perfectly fine with that.

Malcolm wrote:

Personally, I think the White House would look a lot nicer if it were repainted the original pink - which would possibly have the added effect of making US foreign policy less belligerant.  Any American who is not prepared to make this a top priority is clearly a hypocrite, a child and a slave, and it proves that the entire US political system is humiliating, degrading, a corruption and fucked up.

YEAH! Feels good to vent, doesn't it?

Frmrsldr

Double post.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Again, your ignorance is showing.

Canadians swear to the Queen of Canada.  Members of the military swear to the Queen of Canada.  Trudeau had a nice little ceremony where the Queen of Canada signed the Constitution.

The monarchy had exactly two-thirds of four-fifths of eff-all to do with what happened in Toronto at the G20, and having "President of Canada" wouldn;t have changed a damned thing.

Your constant misinformation is tedious.

6079_Smith_W

Actually it was in that Statute of Westminster (and the Balfour Declaration) where that was established, no? That we ar ein fact on an equal footing with Britain, I mean.

Aside from all this blather that she runs the army, the police and everything else, and that she got on the phone and told Officer Bubbles to cuff that poor woman....  what the legislation was really about was establishing that no commonwealth country is subservient to any other, and that so far as it relates to Canada, we run our own affairs, and that our de facto head of state - the governor general - answers to us.

After all, it's not like Elizabeth ate that seal heart or hands out the awards or visited other polar nations. it was our governors general. But it is still part of the same system.

 And that, as you rightly point out, the monarch is our head of state just as much as Britain's

I mean if you really want to get technical she is a German Queen, isn't she, so we aren't even talking about being subservient to Britain. The British Parliament invited her family to move in after the Scots-French dynastymade such a balls up of it.

 

 

Frmrsldr

Malcolm wrote:

Canadians swear to the Queen of Canada.  Members of the military swear to the Queen of Canada.  Trudeau had a nice little ceremony where the Queen of Canada signed the Constitution.

The British monarch (queen) is not a Canadian citizen.

The British monarchy has its own interests at heart

NOT those of Canadians.

Malcolm wrote:

The monarchy had exactly two-thirds of four-fifths of eff-all to do with what happened in Toronto at the G20, and having "President of Canada" wouldn;t have changed a damned thing.

Where do I say any of what you just said?

I have never said "After Canada abolishes the British monarchy, Canada should have a President."

Regarding the G20 I was speaking hypothetically and made that plainly clear.

Malcolm wrote:

Your constant misinformation is tedious.

Your constant (I would guess, intentional) misrepresentation and cursory reading of my posts is tedious.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Ironically, the current senior representative of that Scots-French dynasty is living in Munich and is also the claimant to the throne of Bavaria.

 

Thing is, Fmrsldr has it in his head that Mrs. Battenburg rules all the Commonwealth monarchies as an absolute monarch - and no amount of reality will ever persuade him otherwise.

Now, if Mrs. Battenburg actually WERE an absolute monarch, he'd have a point.  But she isn't and he doesn't.

She is nothing more than a quaint eccentricity of our system.  While change might be desirable in the extract, the net effect of the monarchy on the lives of Canadians is less than negligible, thus abolishing her office is not worth the trouble.

Frmrsldr

6079_Smith_W wrote:

Actually it was in that Statute of Westminster (and the Balfour Declaration) where that was established, no? That we ar ein fact on an equal footing with Britain, I mean.

Yeah.

The Statute of Westminster was enacted by British Parliament in 1931. The thinking was that this was the time of the Great Depression: Britain wouldn't be able to afford to keep the more politically advanced (white settler) Dominions and they would naturally seek their own independence. The Statute was an acknowledgement of these facts.

However, the fact also is that those Commonwealth countries that continue to allow the British head of state to be their head of state by the very nature of this iniquitous relationship are neither equals nor actually on an equal footing with Britain.

The Statute of Westminster opened the door to sovereignty for the Dominions of Australia, Canada, the Irish Free State, New Zealand and the Union of South Africa. The Irish Republic and South Africa chose sovereignty. Canada, Australia and New Zealand haven't walked through that door yet.

6079_Smith_W wrote:

.... what the legislation [Statute of Westminster] was really about was establishing that no commonwealth country is subservient to any other,...

Not quite.

The Statute of Westminster applied only to the "Dominions."

Not to the other colonies.

See how racist that is?

6079_Smith_W wrote:

... the governor general - answers to us.

After all, it's not like Elizabeth ate that seal heart or hands out the awards or visited other polar nations. it was our governors general. But it is still part of the same system.

The Guvnah Genral is the British monarch's little gate keeping, spying, enabling troll in Canada. The British monarch's interests are not identical to those of Canadians.

6079_Smith_W wrote:

I mean if you really want to get technical she is a German Queen, isn't she, so we aren't even talking about being subservient to Britain. The British Parliament invited her family to move in after the Scots-French dynastymade such a balls up of it.

Because the British monarchy has no one's interests but its own, that is why due to the conflict of interest situation caused by WW1, the British(?) royal family changed its name from the Gothic Saxe-Gotha-Coburg to the more English sounding "Windsor."

By the time of Eddy's abdication, with the possibility of another European conflict approaching, the royals were very nervous about his nazi sympathies.

Frmrsldr

Malcolm wrote:

She is nothing more than a quaint eccentricity of our system.  While change might be desirable in the extract, the net effect of the monarchy on the lives of Canadians is less than negligible, thus abolishing her office is not worth the trouble.

I always find it interesting that when I post about the symbolic implications and effects of the British monarch being the (actual or de facto) head of state of (what by all right should be the fully sovereign state of Canada) how this causes some people to become defensive and react emotionally to it.

6079_Smith_W

Frmrsldr wrote:

I always find it interesting that when I post about the symbolic implications and effects of the British monarch being the (actual or de facto) head of state of (what by all right should be the fully sovereign state of Canada) how this causes some people to become defensive and react emotionally to it.

You are simply trolling. 

You want to talk about this some other time I might consider it, but this is fucked up, And I don't mean some symbolic analogy to something else that is fucked up, either.

Good night.

 

Frmrsldr

The brain is a muscle and we got a pretty good workout, didn't we?

Good night, friend.

edmundoconnor

Frmrsldr wrote:

What prevents people from coming up with a credible, workable alternative is if you attempt to spell out all the alternatives, all their details and subtle nuances, etc., on the Referendum ballot.

This is why the Abolish the Monarchy Referendum failed in Australia, not because the majority of Australians didn't want to abolish the monarchy. This is why referenda on fair voting in the provinces that held them failed - in the case of some (all?) provinces this was combined with a minimum bar of a super majority (in B.C. it was 60%) rather than 50%+1 required for them to pass.

No-one said you had to put all the options on the table on the ballot. Why don't the republicans come up with one credible, workable alternative and place that on the ballot paper vs. the Monarchy? Why not this vs. that?

How is a federal panel more democratic than a referendum? Or would you go back to the people again, and ask their opinion? Since they were consulted when the monarchy is abolished, surely the future direction of their country is no less weighty a matter.

The Australian referendum question was badly thought-out. Australian republicans have no-one to blame but themselves in that case.

Meech Lake showed that the originators of a constitutional discussion are often the last people to exert control over it. The discussion, or argument, as it so often became, sucked up all the oxygen in the room and became a runaway train that no-one could control. You would have thought there were no other pressing concerns for Canada. And this was around the time a little thing called free trade was being discussed.

I keep looking for demonstrable harm in terms of our current set-up, and find little beyond vague abstractions. Since there is no concrete alternative on the table, I cannot evaluate that one way or the other.

I can see plenty of demonstrable harm in our government's kowtowing to big corporate, though. Whose face we have on the money, not so much.

Incidentally, does a country get to hold a referendum on whether it turns itself back into a monarchy, or is it only a one-way street?

Finally, I'd be fully in support of considering the royals as public employees, and treat them as such. The right to unionize, performance reviews, and so forth. Cut down the public purse to the bare minimum, and make them work for our money. We're paying for them, and we want them to jump, damnit! We should mail some CUPE membership forms to Buckingham Palace.

Uncle John

Anglo Canadians do not care how much the monarchy pisses people off in Quebec. Using arguments like "it's not important anyway" feeds into Quebec nationalist sentiment as in "Anglos don't care what we want anyway". For sure, if Canada got rid of the Monarchy and became a Republic of the People, much of the impetus for a free and independent Quebec would disappear, as Canada would then become free and independent of a foreign monarch.

Keeping the British Monarchy as the Canadian Monarchy is the essence of Canadian Anglo Chauvanism. Reactionary people don't care if we have a monarchy. Progressive people want to get rid of it. This is a bright line, people, and a major litmus test of your progressivity. In politics, symbolism is everything, as very little actually gets done for the people in our kind of system.

Give me one good reason having a monarchy is progressive and I will eat 2 bowls of bran tomorrow and I will not put even a little bit of museli on it for taste. (And the ancient excuse that the monarchy protects us from the Barons is no good, as no one is protecting us from the Barons under neoliberalism).

On the other hand, there is definitely good reason to get rid of it:

1. We stop pissing off people in Quebec, and probably defuse Quebec nationalism, at least until more Anglo Chauvanism rears its ugly head...

2. We stop pissing off people who are irked by having the defender of the Anglican faith as the Head of State

3. We get rid of a wide perception abroad that we are a colonial backwash comprised of simple morons who do not even want to govern ourselves (because of the monarchy many Americans think Canada is still governed by Britain)

4. We start on a major democratic project where the power is vested in the people, not the representative of a monarch.

 

Are you afraid to rule your own country?

Snert Snert's picture

Since it's only symbolic, what if we symbolically got rid of it?

"I cast thee out, Monarchy!  Begone, foul Head of State!  By the sacred power of the discussion board participant, I command thee, go!"

There.  Done.  Can we move on to actual things now?

Spectrum Spectrum's picture

This the only question Jack Layton has to satisfied with regard to his surge in Quebec? As a question, about Canadian Sovereignty, and it's representation? Is the Monarchy needed?

Just wondering out loud.

Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

We must abolish the Monarchy by using the republican referendum model.  That great model of democracy led to more prisons in California than schools.  IMO Direct American style democracy is not preferable to parliamentary democracy.  I look to the south and see an antidemocratic state run by an oligarchy with no morals or traditions except that great American adage, " theres a sucker born every minute."

The Queen is irrelevant.  The Statute of Westminster has largely become irrelevant as well with the rise of NATO in this century.  My understanding is the command of imperial troops was the most important component of the Statute.  After the Crimean and Boer wars the British Empire went into WWI with an integrated command structure that had the English aristocracy commanding Canadian soldiers in the field.  The main purpose was to stop our troops from being cannon fodder because of incompetent and arrogant foreign commanders.

In practical terms we now have given the NATO commander in chief that authority.  You know the Leader of the Free World, with no Monarchy, that I don't get to vote for.  Deep integration of our military and police is happening right now.  I worry far more about that descent into an undemocratic colonialism controlled by the White House than the Queen.  I find it interesting that an American would promote the idea that mirroring their system is the only really democratic alternative.  Some things never change.

In this modern world I think that all citizens of NATO should get a vote for their Commander in Chief not just americans.  Lets have a discussion about actual empires and how they function in this century. A symbolic tradition from our former colonial masters bothers me far less than NAFTA and NATO and deep integration.

Pages

Topic locked