Skip to main content

Why the monarchy has to change

I'm neither a mad monarchist nor a rabid republican. I have no interest in royalty, but I think the associated pomp and circumstance does bring us good tourist income - and I'm not particularly worried about getting rid of our royals entirely. Apart from anything else, having a hands-off head of state strikes me as a good thing. It's just confusing when a country has a prime minister and a president, both highly active in politics.

However, the upcoming wedding has got me thinking about the viability of the current setup. It really needs to change. A small point is primogeniture. The idea that any male should inherit ahead of his older sisters is just ludicrous and needs to be done away with immediately. But there are two other, bigger elephants in the room.

The first elephant (think ears) is Prince Charles. I'm sorry, this ageing homeopathic organic biscuit seller and woo supporter is not someone I would like to see on the throne - and going on the polls, I'm not alone. If he doesn't voluntarily offer to give up the job, we need some quick legislation to prevent his accession.

But longer term there's an even bigger problem. The worst thing about our present royalty is the idea that one family should hold the position for ever. This has no historical precedent - we've always had evolutionary forces acting on our royalty before. When the ruling family started to get weak another family would simply butcher them and take over. But this isn't likely to happen any more. We're stuck with the same bunch as they gradually become less and less viable.

I seriously believe we ought to find some way to elect our monarch rather than rely on dubious breeding stock. Perhaps Andrew Lloyd Webber could be persuaded to lend us the format used to select stars for West End shows via TV spectaculars as a way of winnowing down the possibles and coming to an answer. Or we could resort to more traditional means - lock all the candidates in the Big Brother house, but rather than evict them, it's the one that's left alive that takes the throne.

Okay, maybe those mechanisms aren't quite right - but we have to change the process somehow.


  1. Agree - the Queen is a good inward investment brand. Charles must go, if only for the ears! :-) oops

    As for the in breeding, I'd like to see some people accessing the throne with real breeding, e.g. Lady Gaga or Madonna

  2. I've got to say, Brian -- you do make me laugh! This is great!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Is 5x3 the same as 3x5?

The Internet has gone mildly bonkers over a child in America who was marked down in a test because when asked to work out 5x3 by repeated addition he/she used 5+5+5 instead of 3+3+3+3+3. Those who support the teacher say that 5x3 means 'five lots of 3' where the complainants say that 'times' is commutative (reversible) so the distinction is meaningless as 5x3 and 3x5 are indistinguishable. It's certainly true that not all mathematical operations are commutative. I think we are all comfortable that 5-3 is not the same as 3-5.  However. This not true of multiplication (of numbers). And so if there is to be any distinction, it has to be in the use of English to interpret the 'x' sign. Unfortunately, even here there is no logical way of coming up with a definitive answer. I suspect most primary school teachers would expands 'times' as 'lots of' as mentioned above. So we get 5 x 3 as '5 lots of 3'. Unfortunately that only wor

Why I hate opera

If I'm honest, the title of this post is an exaggeration to make a point. I don't really hate opera. There are a couple of operas - notably Monteverdi's Incoranazione di Poppea and Purcell's Dido & Aeneas - that I quite like. But what I do find truly sickening is the reverence with which opera is treated, as if it were some particularly great art form. Nowhere was this more obvious than in ITV's recent gut-wrenchingly awful series Pop Star to Opera Star , where the likes of Alan Tichmarsh treated the real opera singers as if they were fragile pieces on Antiques Roadshow, and the music as if it were a gift of the gods. In my opinion - and I know not everyone agrees - opera is: Mediocre music Melodramatic plots Amateurishly hammy acting A forced and unpleasant singing style Ridiculously over-supported by public funds I won't even bother to go into any detail on the plots and the acting - this is just self-evident. But the other aspects need some ex

Which idiot came up with percentage-based gradient signs

Rant warning: the contents of this post could sound like something produced by UKIP. I wish to make it clear that I do not in any way support or endorse that political party. In fact it gives me the creeps. Once upon a time, the signs for a steep hill on British roads displayed the gradient in a simple, easy-to-understand form. If the hill went up, say, one yard for every three yards forward it said '1 in 3'. Then some bureaucrat came along and decided that it would be a good idea to state the slope as a percentage. So now the sign for (say) a 1 in 10 slope says 10% (I think). That 'I think' is because the percentage-based slope is so unnatural. There are two ways we conventionally measure slopes. Either on X/Y coordiates (as in 1 in 4) or using degrees - say at a 15° angle. We don't measure them in percentages. It's easy to visualize a 1 in 3 slope, or a 30 degree angle. Much less obvious what a 33.333 recurring percent slope is. And what's a 100% slope