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  #181  
Old 10-28-2007, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Chimene View Post
Wait a minuteÖ Declaring war on Britain? Your post completely confused me.
I was, merely, joking. you kept on saying that it is up for the British People to decide, as if have ever suggested otherwise

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Originally Posted by Chimene View Post
Yes, the law states that everyone has a fair chance. But, what is the reality we are truly dealing with? And since you brought up the subject of Obama, whom by the way has a white mother and has lived all over the world, therefore had a different set of opportunities. Where are most of the young black men in the US right now, in jail? Should we talk about the education system, which would allow someone to get to the top in the first place?

Yes, there are those who make it pass the gate, but in what number that would qualify as systemic? And when I say the establishment, Iím not only talking about governments, but also those with inherited (or not) capitals (thatís the name of the game) whose sole motivation and purpose is keeping the status quo. Those people lobby to keep their interests at the forefront of legislation. I could go onÖ
I'm in complete and total agreement with all the these things. But, is that a reason to prevent anyone, by law, from the opportunity of becoming a Head of State? I've have never suggested that doing away with the Monarchy would improve, all of the sudden, the quality of life of all those unfortunate people. I, simply, don't deem the notion that the position of being Head of State should be hereditary as acceptable. It ought to be open for everyone.

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Let the British decide has always been my argument, and I have also said that Iím not for or against anything, because anything short of ideal is bound to upset somebody.
Again, I don't think anyone on this thread suggested that anyone else but the British ought to decide. Having this discussion is not an attempt to tell the British People what to do. We're, simply, exchanging views. As a non-British, I could only give my perspective and my opinion is not superior to anyone else's.
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  #182  
Old 10-28-2007, 02:02 PM
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I'm in complete and total agreement with all the these things. But, is that a reason to prevent anyone, by law, from the opportunity of becoming a Head of State? I've have never suggested that doing away with the Monarchy would improve, all of the sudden, the quality of life of all those unfortunate people. I, simply, don't deem the notion that the position of being Head of State should be hereditary as acceptable. It ought to be open for everyone.
The same can be said for the opposite. Is there really a reason to force major change in order to make people "feel good" about being able to be head of state. Let's say that in any given 80 year period there are 120,000,000 Britons alive at some point during that period.

Let's say the "President" has a 5 year term that they can only once, and that you have to be 18 in order to get the job. During any one persons eligibility span, there would be 12 times that a President is chosen by whatever means. That's a 1 in 10 million chance of becoming President.

That's an awfully small chance of becoming President for anyone to feel good about.
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  #183  
Old 10-28-2007, 02:26 PM
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Originally Posted by hofburg
In the case of your post, beside your obvious attempt at sarcasm, I cant find anything real comment on. So, sorry I can't be of more help
In actuality I was only sarcastic in the first sentence and even that was rather mild sarcasm. Sorry to offend you with that but the rest of what I wrote was dead serious. These are my points.
  1. Monarchs don't hold actual power but they are symbols for a nation.
  2. The media is held by private persons who have wide ranging abilities to mold public opinion and to influence democratic elections.
  3. Businesses can buy out any politician or anyone who needs to convince or sway public opinion to get into office to an extent that the politician once in office becomes beholden to them.
  4. No office is truly open to everyone. Even the U.S. Presidency is barred from members who are not born in the United States. This restriction is not held by other officeholders even the monarch of Great Britain. A monarch can be born outside of the confines of the British Empire.
  5. For individual elements of public policy such as the Iraq war or the War on Terror, it is more beneficial for these to be decided by a government of elected officials because they have term limits and if the course of action is proven wrong over time it can be reversed by the next administration.
  6. For the identification of a people and a nation, it is not beneficial that this job be put in the hands of someone who is also in charge of furthering a particular public policy and who is perhaps beholden to wealthy special interest groups because the campaign to foster a national identity will always be subjugated to the pragmatic policy of the day. The office of the president as originally outlined by the constitution was of an office that did not further any special interests itself but simply administered or carried out the laws that Congress passed. That intention was eroded very quickly. The Presidents of other nations actually hold to the original intentions for the presidential office that the American Constitution foresaw for the American Presidency for they are elected and hold no executive power, this situation would be ideal for the United States but it feels a bit of a foreign concept for the presidents of the other countries do not get a lot of press and so one wonders whether it would defeat the purpose of a head of state whose purpose is to represent a nation.
  7. Great Britain has a different system where they have had a family that for 1000 years that has been identified with the nation. At first it had absolute power but then first with the nobles and then with the aristocratic class and finally with the middle class it has slowly devolved its power so that Britain has steadily and generally without bloodshed become more and more democratic with each century. Now the last bastion of influence it retains is the identification of the nation. If this Royal Family can do its job well, then it is more beneficial to the nation to let it do its job. Why should not an elected official be allowed to do the job? Well because an elected official can be bought out and while individual policies are bound to be bought out by special interest groups, the identity of a nation should never be for sale. Public policy and good government can be fulfilled by a skill set which anyone who possesses can fulfill. The identity of a nation though and its people is not achieved by having the right skill set but having the right attitude and attitudes are achieved by being surrounded by that attitude from birth. The attitudes you are born with more likely stay with you for the rest of your life. Queen Elizabeth II is a prime example of this. She was born with the attitude to serve and she was raised in an environment where loyalty and attention to one's duties and responsibilities was the norm. No American President and indeed no British PM has ever had loyalty and dedication to serve as their prime motivators. It is natural that men who want to influence the world do so by their desire for their own personal power. It works for public policy; but it doesn't work for a national identity.
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  #184  
Old 10-28-2007, 02:34 PM
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IF the monarchy was abolished and the head of state of the UK directly elected, what are the practical results? The public would have ONE more office to vote for on election day. As far as public impact, that would be about it. Currently the position of head of state in the UK holds no real power that is exercised, it has been hundreds of years since the Monarch refused to assent to a law that Parliament passed.

I still think the real issues here are ones of cash class. Abolishing the Monarchy would do nothing to change that. As has been previously stated, those who have cash and political power are not going to just divy it up because they are good guys, that is not human nature.
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  #185  
Old 10-28-2007, 02:45 PM
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I don't think the notion that anyone can become head of state is a measure of democracy. Or, for that matter, a measure of meritocracy. Anyone can become head of state in a country where a general can stage a military coup and take over; anybody can become head of state in the world's least democratic nations as long as he can get the support of the military. Some of the most tyrannical dictatorships are nations where theoretically anyone could become head of state, but they aren't meritocracies; it's very often a matter of who's the most corrupt and ruthless strongman. Give me a constitutional monarchy any day. The notion that you could theoretically become head of state may be a comforting one, but in practical terms it has nothing to do with democracy or representative government.
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  #186  
Old 10-28-2007, 03:23 PM
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Hofburg, by your own admission this has been a fascinating topic. And as such, in a debate it is sometimes necessary to delve into the larger context, not just the specific in order to drive our points home. I think that’s where Ysbel was coming from as well. If we remove the emotions out of it, I know it’s not always easy when we get so passionate; my point is one system may not be better than the other. No one’s idea is superior, which would defeat the purpose of this thread. By now you probably have a sense that I’m not only interested in competition so being right is not that productive to me in this case. Since you and I are in agreement on most points except for a technicality, I want to extend a handshake to you.
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  #187  
Old 10-28-2007, 03:30 PM
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What would benefit the Royal Family in retaining the Monarchy??...

This is an interesting angle to the situation.

I am sure they would balk at the idea of not having access to information and people who can assist them in controlling multiple avenues of assets for their own personal portfolios!
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  #188  
Old 10-28-2007, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by diamondBrg View Post
I understand Beatrixfan, I was absolutely CONVINCED when I graduated from college and I do mean the day that I did, that within 48 hours I would be receiving multiple phone calls and letters in the mail box with job offers, I had also decided and this was 1980, that I would accept the FIRST ONE that came in that offered me $75,000.00 a year. To my astonishment, NOT ONE!!

I was also convinced that within 2 at tops 5 years with my generation hitting the scene there would be a DRAMATIC overhaul in society, fairness, equality and opportunity would reign supreme, somehow it didn't happen.

I was also certain that gay people would at last, by 1985 at the very latest, receive full legal equality in the US. It was 2000 when the US Supreme Court finally ruled that states (including my home state of Texas) could not make consensual sex between adults criminal. I am still waiting for something approaching equality where I live in my legal standing and that of my relationship. :) I have learned to be grateful for being able to live safely and for the most part freely and not have to be concerned about being beaten while I walk down the street minding my own business. I vividly remember when that was not the case.
It is a sad statement for all, when people have to have laws passed to enable them to be accepted by the rest of us. Why anyone's lifestyle should evoke ire is beyond me. But such is the case everywhere. Thus saying that, would the presence of the RF in Britain change attitudes there any more than
an intelligent "president" might help the situation. The Supreme Court ebbs and flows with whom the justices are. We now have a president who falls in step with the fools who think life as we know it will go under if members of the same sex marry. Has the RF spoken out on this issue. As it is not my issue I must admit I know nothing about how the British react to this. How about Parliment? We have better thinkers on this issue in Congress. At least to the point where they have bucked an amendement to the constitution forbidding gay marriage. The forefathers would turn over in their graves, to think that any thinking person would want that attachted to the "Constitution".
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  #189  
Old 10-28-2007, 05:08 PM
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My problem with "Monarchy" is the economic powerbase they have...At least a president or other elected official is, in theory, a representative of the whims and thoughts of the people and has cause to interact with people from all levels of society. They are, in effect, the mouthpiece and powerbase, for a term limited to 8 years max (here in USA), for the interests of their political party. An "elected president" is merely the spokesperson for a particular economic system....

"Monarchy" has unlimited and unfettered lieftime access to multi-governmental information they can use for private economic gain.

I think it is vastly unfair for a person, by virtue of birth, to have rights, means and access to data that can be used for virtual economic control of the entire universe.... I think the early American colonists got it right that it wasn't "fair" for the revenues for their toils and labor line the pockets of a monarch...

Even a president doesn't get to go thru red lights after he leaves office!
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  #190  
Old 10-28-2007, 06:30 PM
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Even a president doesn't get to go thru red lights after he leaves office!
In the US they still get police escorts and motorcades and all that fun stuff, so yes, they do get to go through red lights.

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  #191  
Old 10-28-2007, 07:53 PM
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For the sake of accuracy, ALL former US Presidents et 1) Their FULL Presidential salary for life, currently $186,600.00 annually, FULL Federal medical benefits, Life time and around the clock Secret Service protection for both themselves, their spouse and minor children, immediately before leaving office a President can extend this Secret Service protection, by Executive Order to his adult children, parents, siblings, a former President's wife/husband is entitled to $20,000.00 annual pension for life while a former President is alive, when the former President deceases and should the spouse survive him, the spouse is entitled to $60,000.00 annually for life. 2) A Presidential library built at the taxpayer's expense for life. 3) Office space and staff of the former President's choice paid for at taxpayer's expense for life. 4) A former President and spouse are entitled to travel expenses around the world and US DIPLOMATIC Passports for their use, their minor children are as well.
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  #192  
Old 10-28-2007, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by diamondBrg View Post
For the sake of accuracy, ALL former US Presidents et 1) Their FULL Presidential salary for life, currently $186,600.00 annually, FULL Federal medical benefits, Life time and around the clock Secret Service protection for both themselves, their spouse and minor children, immediately before leaving office a President can extend this Secret Service protection, by Executive Order to his adult children, parents, siblings, a former President's wife/husband is entitled to $20,000.00 annual pension for life while a former President is alive, when the former President deceases and should the spouse survive him, the spouse is entitled to $60,000.00 annually for life. 2) A Presidential library built at the taxpayer's expense for life. 3) Office space and staff of the former President's choice paid for at taxpayer's expense for life. 4) A former President and spouse are entitled to travel expenses around the world and US DIPLOMATIC Passports for their use, their minor children are as well.
But that's... almost... someone getting benefits... for life... even though they have no "real" job... That's supposed to end in republics!
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  #193  
Old 10-28-2007, 09:50 PM
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But that's... almost... someone getting benefits... for life... even though they have no "real" job... That's supposed to end in republics!
It most assuredly is "life time benefits" no doubt about that at all and ALL AT TAXPAYER EXPENSE. Not to mention that former President's and their spouses can make MILLIONS in paid speeches, their political endorsements of future candidates is worth a GREAT DEAL, OF COURSE IT IS INDIRECT COMENSATION. Perhaps a mansion for say $200 a month rent with a 30 year lease. :)

Again, if ANYONE thinks that "Republics" somehow guarantee equality, a level playing field in practical reality, THINK AGAIN.
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  #194  
Old 10-29-2007, 01:17 AM
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The Queen receives 8.1 million pounds from the Civil List and a total of 35 million pounds for upkeep on properties and travel. Seems a bit more than the pay ex-presidents receive. Yes, she shares some of that with her family for their ribbon cutting and opeing of meat markets, but the RF lives far more extravagantly than our 3 Ex-Presidents. And, by the way, there is a group looking into ending some of these perks for ex-presidents, which you are right are too great. Jimmy Carter physically helps builds houses for the poor. The elder Bush and Mr. Clinton do a great deal of charity work. It is not a big deal, but that is all the RF family does at any time.
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  #195  
Old 10-29-2007, 02:35 AM
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The Queen receives 8.1 million pounds from the Civil List and a total of 35 million pounds for upkeep on properties and travel. Seems a bit more than the pay ex-presidents receive. Yes, she shares some of that with her family for their ribbon cutting and opeing of meat markets, but the RF lives far more extravagantly than our 3 Ex-Presidents. And, by the way, there is a group looking into ending some of these perks for ex-presidents, which you are right are too great. Jimmy Carter physically helps builds houses for the poor. The elder Bush and Mr. Clinton do a great deal of charity work. It is not a big deal, but that is all the RF family does at any time.
None of that is her private income, and it in can't really be considered to be her "pay." The civil list goes to pay for her household, and the grants-in-aid pay only for travel and property maintenance.

Upkeep on properties and travel hardly count as part of her pay, anyways. The Palaces (state owned) need to be maintained whether or not there is a monarchy, and a President would travel just as much.

The only private monies the Queen receives are funds from her own investments and from the Duchy of Lancaster. If the monarchy went today, the Queen would still get that, because it's inherited separately from the crown, and is considered personal property, unlike the Crown Estates.
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  #196  
Old 10-29-2007, 06:12 AM
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Originally Posted by pinkie40 View Post
"Monarchy" has unlimited and unfettered lieftime access to multi-governmental information they can use for private economic gain.

I think it is vastly unfair for a person, by virtue of birth, to have rights, means and access to data that can be used for virtual economic control of the entire universe....
I can't quite see HM on the phone to her broker, screaming 'sell, sell. sell'. HM has bank accounts and investments, but I wouldn't imagine Gordon telling her that Wimpy might start to struggle, so dispose of their shares!
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  #197  
Old 10-29-2007, 02:07 PM
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None of that is her private income, and it in can't really be considered to be her "pay." The civil list goes to pay for her household, and the grants-in-aid pay only for travel and property maintenance.

Upkeep on properties and travel hardly count as part of her pay, anyways. The Palaces (state owned) need to be maintained whether or not there is a monarchy, and a President would travel just as much.

The only private monies the Queen receives are funds from her own investments and from the Duchy of Lancaster. If the monarchy went today, the Queen would still get that, because it's inherited separately from the crown, and is considered personal property, unlike the Crown Estates.
She is a very wealthy woman and until a few years ago paid no taxes. Presidents always paid taxes. None of them have her wealth and unlimted access to vast sums of funds, it seems. They do not travel in the same luxury that she does, no do their wives. She travels with vast number of trunks, dressers, maids and all sorts of lackeys unknown to presidents. They spend plenty of taxpayer money, don't get me wrong, but the monarchy lives in splendour. These private holdings have been gleaned from the prople, also. Some former relative helped himself to it and passed it on. Everything she inherited from the queen mother came without taxes, so all these years all these funds etc have grown exponetially.
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  #198  
Old 10-29-2007, 02:15 PM
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True, but no American president has to pay the crippling taxes the upper class has been forced to pay in Great Britain since the late 1940s. When Queen Elizabeth dies, the death duties will probably force Prince Charles to sell Balmoral and Sandringham.
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  #199  
Old 10-29-2007, 02:55 PM
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These private holdings have been gleaned from the prople, also. Some former relative helped himself to it and passed it on. Everything she inherited from the queen mother came without taxes, so all these years all these funds etc have grown exponetially.
So what do you want people who inherit wealth and/or property to do, what do you want HM to do? Put it all in one big pot to be distributed to the 'poor and needy'? Who decides who gets what, give it to the government and they will increase their own salaries and pensions, it won't go to 'the people'.

A lot of these 'private holdings' were obtained because the good old ancestors purchased land, farmed or produced items that others wanted, this in turn gave them the money to employ/buy enough men to fight for them. It is no different today, when large companies take over smaller companies.

To your way of thinking, it would seem, that it is pointless working to improve yourself, to buy a nice house with a few acres, saving to have money and valuables to pass to your children, because a few years down the line, someone will come along and say 'it's not fair, their ancestors managed to leave more to them than mine, so lets take it away'.

This thread is starting to turn a bright shade of envy!
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  #200  
Old 10-29-2007, 03:00 PM
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True, but no American president has to pay the crippling taxes the upper class has been forced to pay in Great Britain since the late 1940s. When Queen Elizabeth dies, the death duties will probably force Prince Charles to sell Balmoral and Sandringham.
I don't think it will come to that, but it is worth noting that all income (from shares portfolios or savings) is payable at 40% and inheritance tax is also a staggering 40% for anyone who leaves more than £300,000 worth of property, savings or goods!
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