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  #321  
Old 01-18-2020, 09:17 AM
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Is it the case that Frederik and Mary have abandoned renting out their house?
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...amid-criticism
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  #322  
Old 01-18-2020, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Lumutqueen View Post
Is it the case that Frederik and Mary have abandoned renting out their house?
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...amid-criticism
I read that now it is public knowledge who the owners are, it has become a security risk. Possibly they could still rent to select, vetted people?
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  #323  
Old 01-18-2020, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Lumutqueen View Post
Is it the case that Frederik and Mary have abandoned renting out their house?
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...amid-criticism
I had seen the same Bloomberg article and my impression was they now have abandoned renting it out.

"The heir to the Danish throne, Crown Prince Frederik, has had to abandon an arrangement in which he was personally collecting rent on a luxury ski lodge in the Swiss alps.

The palace said the decision was made after it became public knowledge that Crown Prince Frederik owned the Swiss property, meaning the “terms for subletting are no longer the same,” according to Danish news service Ritzau"

It is my impression they paid for the property with their own money and have owned it for over 10 years. I suppose this may have been kept under the radar a bit longer if they weren't currently living there for the 12 weeks their children are attending school in Verbier.

Investments in property including rentals is common. It appears some in the Danish Parliament are calling into question the "constitutionality". "The case has drawn criticism in Danish media and among some members of parliament, who called into question the constitutionality of the prince’s transactions. In Denmark, the royal family lives on a public allowance that can only be spent on foreign assets with the approval of lawmakers." Again, if they used their own money, foreign asset or not, should this not be a private business transaction? Regarding the security risk it appears there has not been an issue until now. Interesting!
  #324  
Old 01-18-2020, 05:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Muhler View Post
That's some broadside you fired there!

Okay, there are many ways Frederik could have ended up becoming friends with senior officers.
These are people of roughly the same age as Frederik, but being career officers they would in some cases be one or two stars above him in rank by now.
It is more than likely he would have met and worked with them several times in the past. On active service. In connection with his time in Frogman Corps. The Frogman Corps adhered directly under the Defense Chief at the time, where some of these gentlemen would likely have served as staff officers.
When Frederik taught at the Defense Academy. He also gave lectures on the situation in the Baltics. By that time these gentlemen would likely have been senior staff officers.
So claiming that there is no way Frederik could happen to be old friends with senior officers is erroneous.

Now, do Frederik and the officers discuss anything else than the latest camouflage-fashion? Personally I'm sure they do.
So what? It's not like Frederik is plotting against the government or considering supporting a military coup or trying to influence the defense policy. He is IMO simply keeping himself informally informed. - He is after all destined to be the formal commander in chief and the DRF have always had a close affiliation with the military.

Now this is admittedly a big problem, perhaps a huge problem, for theoretics. But for the more practically inclined it's just a part of the informal way of doing things behind the scenes.
Plausible deniability. As long as no one know exactly what is discussed they might indeed discuss knitting socks. And everybody is happy. The Minister of Defense doesn't have to confront the DRF and the Defense Command. And everybody can maintain a good working relationship.

And comparing Frederik to Ex-king Constantine and the situation in Greece 45 years ago is - what did you call it - a textbook example of false equivalence.
(I'll have to remember that phrase it's most useful! )
Now you're operating within the realms of hypotheticals again. You know as little as I do regarding Frederik's personal relations with the participants. I'm not saying it's impossible for him to be friends with senior officers, I'm saying that the meetings have been brushed off as a case of old friends – soldaterkammerater – catching up and looking through the list of participants at these very formalised meetings, I simply can't buy that. This is the very top of the Danish military.

But that's beyond my point anyway. My point is that once the people involved find it necessary to keep these meeting off the radar, it gets shady undertones. Frederik has never been denied or been unable to access to information going through the proper channels. OLFI's article details that it has been agreed within the group of participants that the meetings should be kept secret. Why the need for secret-keeping? Why the need to go behind the government's back?

And so what? Well, let's see. Beside the fact the Crown Prince is not supposed to receive private briefings off the record by the Chief of Defence? Beside the fact that the Crown Prince – in spite of being the future commander-in-chief – is not a part of the Defence Staff's chief group and as such, he's neither obliged nor supposed to know everything that's going on within the defence. Beside the fact that its members being apolitical makes up the foundation of a constitutional monarchy? Beside the fact that several of the participants in these meetings have played roles in some of the many unfortunate cases within the defence that have unfolded recently?

If you wanna turn a blind eye to or downplay the gravity of this situation, that's on you. I just want to make it clear to everyone else that this isn't just an "informal way of doing things behind the scenes". It's serious breach of the ground rules that make up the royal family's raison d'être in a modern society. And writing it off as merely a theoretical problem because "in practice, these briefings may even be the most convenient solution" or "Frederik isn't the kind of future monarch to support a military coup" is such a dangerous slippery slope. The rules are there for a reason. And I'm saying this as an ardent supporter of Frederik.

I think you wanna make sure you know how to use the expression correctly then. This wouldn't be it as Constantine is a very real – albeit extreme – example of why royals shouldn't involve themselves with the military behind the government's back
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  #325  
Old 01-18-2020, 05:39 PM
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"This wouldn't be it as Constantine is a very real – albeit extreme – example of why royals shouldn't involve themselves with the military behind the government's back."

The point you raise is very valid, as illustrated by the example of the unfortunate King of Greece. However, I cannot imagine the Crown Prince -and nephew to the King!- would "involve himself with the military behind the government's back", especially as some government members themselves are probably ex-military! I also believe that it is the function of a monarchy to be the 'eyes, ears and mouth' of the people so that Crown Prince Frederik is quite correct in bringing himself to meetings-informal or otherwise- with the military so that he can monitor, learn and advise as his wide ranging experience sees fit.
  #326  
Old 01-18-2020, 05:54 PM
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If you've read along, you'll know that involving himself with some of the highest ranking officers in the military without the Minister of Defence's knowledge is exactly what he has done.

And let's not delude ourselves into thinking this is the only way in which Frederik can obtain information. He has every chance to access information by official means – visits to different military bases, meetings with senior officers on record, his adjuncts, the Minister of Defence or even the PM's office – there's absolutely no reason to go about it without the government's knowledge.
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  #327  
Old 01-18-2020, 05:55 PM
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Well, like I said: A huge problem for theoretics.

So you are comparing DK today to Greece anno 1970 or so?
You must be, since you brought it up and is talking about this being a slippery slope. Come on!
Where is the danger in the Heir having a chat with high ranking military officers, without calling the Minister of Defense to ask for permission first?
The DRF meet high ranking and not so high ranking officers all the time, without politicians being present. Where they can get all sorts of information if they ask for it. Is that a problem too, you think? Should the DRF members be chaperoned by a politician each time they meet high ranking officers, lest they talk outside the proper channels? - Because that IMO would be a problem!

To me this is a storm in a glass of water, based on... nothing.

So let me ask you, why is this a problem? I'm serious, why is it a problem that a member of the DRF is having talks with high ranking military officers, even if what they are talking about is indeed military and security topics?

I don't suspect the DRF in plotting with the military against the politicians or in the hope of the DRF influencing the politicians - especially as the military get pretty much what they want these days. New planes, new frigates, new brigades, new commands (Arctic and digital warfare commands.)
Nor can I envision a military coup anywhere in the horizon. The thought that Danish soldiers would fight against democracy let alone turn their guns against their own fellow citizens is beyond me - even though it admittedly is a suggestion I to me bewilderment see uttered often in another democratic country that shall remain unnamed here.

So yes, I will downplay the "gravity" of this, because I honestly don't see a problem.
  #328  
Old 01-18-2020, 06:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lady Daly View Post
I had seen the same Bloomberg article and my impression was they now have abandoned renting it out.

"The heir to the Danish throne, Crown Prince Frederik, has had to abandon an arrangement in which he was personally collecting rent on a luxury ski lodge in the Swiss alps.

The palace said the decision was made after it became public knowledge that Crown Prince Frederik owned the Swiss property, meaning the “terms for subletting are no longer the same,” according to Danish news service Ritzau"

It is my impression they paid for the property with their own money and have owned it for over 10 years. I suppose this may have been kept under the radar a bit longer if they weren't currently living there for the 12 weeks their children are attending school in Verbier.

Investments in property including rentals is common. It appears some in the Danish Parliament are calling into question the "constitutionality". "The case has drawn criticism in Danish media and among some members of parliament, who called into question the constitutionality of the prince’s transactions. In Denmark, the royal family lives on a public allowance that can only be spent on foreign assets with the approval of lawmakers." Again, if they used their own money, foreign asset or not, should this not be a private business transaction? Regarding the security risk it appears there has not been an issue until now. Interesting!
The apanage goes to cover the expenses of running a court, paying salaries, representation, transport, accommodation of foreign guests, maintenance and so on - basically all the things needed to run a company.
Apart from that there is in the apanage an amount (in DK called "rammebeløb") which cover personal expenses, that is basically the "salary" to the individual members of the DRF to be used as they please.
And that's where it assumed that part of the money to pay for the cottage in Verbier could have come from.
  #329  
Old 01-18-2020, 07:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muhler View Post
The apanage goes to cover the expenses of running a court, paying salaries, representation, transport, accommodation of foreign guests, maintenance and so on - basically all the things needed to run a company.
Apart from that there is in the apanage an amount (in DK called "rammebeløb") which cover personal expenses, that is basically the "salary" to the individual members of the DRF to be used as they please.
And that's where it assumed that part of the money to pay for the cottage in Verbier could have come from.
Your clarification is much appreciated. So even if the cottage was paid for with so called private funds, those funds could still have come from the "rammebeløb" and not necessarily personal funds, i.e. from inheritance. Interesting and always so much to learn. Thank you.
  #330  
Old 01-18-2020, 08:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Muhler View Post
Well, like I said: A huge problem for theoretics.

So you are comparing DK today to Greece anno 1970 or so?
You must be, since you brought it up and is talking about this being a slippery slope. Come on!
Where is the danger in the Heir having a chat with high ranking military officers, without calling the Minister of Defense to ask for permission first?
The DRF meet high ranking and not so high ranking officers all the time, without politicians being present. Where they can get all sorts of information if they ask for it. Is that a problem too, you think? Should the DRF members be chaperoned by a politician each time they meet high ranking officers, lest they talk outside the proper channels? - Because that IMO would be a problem!

To me this is a storm in a glass of water, based on... nothing.

So let me ask you, why is this a problem? I'm serious, why is it a problem that a member of the DRF is having talks with high ranking military officers, even if what they are talking about is indeed military and security topics?

I don't suspect the DRF in plotting with the military against the politicians or in the hope of the DRF influencing the politicians - especially as the military get pretty much what they want these days. New planes, new frigates, new brigades, new commands (Arctic and digital warfare commands.)
Nor can I envision a military coup anywhere in the horizon. The thought that Danish soldiers would fight against democracy let alone turn their guns against their own fellow citizens is beyond me - even though it admittedly is a suggestion I to me bewilderment see uttered often in another democratic country that shall remain unnamed here.

So yes, I will downplay the "gravity" of this, because I honestly don't see a problem.
"Where is the danger?" "Why is this a problem?" Read my posts, maybe? I feel I have detailed several times over why this is indeed an issue. I don't know if you have read the OLFI-article but so have several experts on the subject (that is experts outside the realm of "royal commentatorship").

It's not a matter of asking for permission. It's a matter of him receiving briefings by a selection of the highest-ranking officers in the country off the record and without the government's knowledge. If it's no big deal, if nothing sinister is going on, why keep it a secret?

I can't imagine you're being serious when you compare meetings with some of the most senior officers in the Danish military that have been initiated with the objective of briefing the Crown Prince on military issues without informing the MoD to members of the DRF merely being in the close vicinity of any military officer, so I'm gonna just disregard that part.

We've had this discussion before so I don't know why your laissez-faire approach to the DRF's seeming inability to play by the fairly simple rules that have been laid down for them is even remotely surprising to me. Yes, for now it's a theoretical problem. But theoretical problems easily become practical problems if you continue to turn a blind eye to breaches of standard ground rules. Hence it being a slippery slope. This isn't rocket science. The rules in question are not tough to follow.
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  #331  
Old 01-19-2020, 05:18 AM
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Well, I am being serious.

That these meetings have not been made public does not mean they are secret. - Just that they are informal.
The DRF have informal meetings (i.e. meetings that are not listed in the official diary) all the time and with all sorts of people. Why not the military?

I do find your lack of confidence in Frederik as well as the officers somewhat worrying. The officers are professionals. They won't tell Frederik things he is not cleared to know (considering how high a clearance Frederik must have that can't be much, in regards to Danish affairs that is, NATO affairs is another matter) nor would they tell him anything they are under orders from the Minister not to tell him.
I will however find it very disturbing should a minister gag the military in regards to the DRF.

Even if they discuss defense politics, the security situation, materiel and procedures, why shouldn't they? It would I imagine be useful for Frederik to also learn about the opinions the officers, for career reasons perhaps, are reluctant to tell their political masters.
I bet Frederik has experienced at least one briefing along these lines:
"The Defense Chiefs and I are in perfect agreement in regards to the current defense policy. Right?!?" - "Yes, minister." - "You see, Your Royal Highness, there are no issues within the military."

I don't know about you, but I do not have full confidence in the politicians always presenting, shall we say, a full picture.

------------------

Now for Verbier and the cottage there.

Yes, Lady Daly, at least a part of the down payment (and renovation) of the cottage could, and probably did, come from the "rammebeløb" (*) However as M&F had only been married for a few years back in 2009, that IMO can't have been much.
Some are seemingly appalled that the DRF get so much for their "rammebeløb" that they can save up enough to pay for a house in the more fashionable part of Switzerland and conclude that it means the amount they get, must be too high.
Personally I find that attitude baffling!
Apparently the DRF members are not allowed to increase their personal fortune... The only other DK citizens who are in the same situation, are those who receive basic welfare and who are to be browbeaten into getting a job.
If my employer even suggested I couldn't have an additional income apart from my salary, I would hand in my resignation.

(*) Perhaps someone can suggest an English word for "rammebeløb"? The part of the apanage that is for personal and private use.
  #332  
Old 01-19-2020, 05:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Muhler View Post
Yes, Lady Daly, at least a part of the down payment (and renovation) of the cottage could, and probably did, come from the "rammebeløb" (*) However as M&F had only been married for a few years back in 2009, that IMO can't have been much.
Some are seemingly appalled that the DRF get so much for their "rammebeløb" that they can save up enough to pay for a house in the more fashionable part of Switzerland and conclude that it means the amount they get, must be too high.
Personally I find that attitude baffling!
So do I.
There's also the fact that the Crown Prince, at the time (2009), had had an apanage for more than 20 years. He could have saved, invested and I think I have at some point read somewhere that there was also an inheritance after QI.

Ekstra Bladet is always "outraged" by something, especially with "big" events (OM's 80th) coming up. They always have a bigger "campaign" before or around the big DRF events. Or when the CPC or others are abroad or on holiday.

I trust all that are outraged show similar concern about QM (and PH) owning private property and J&M also owning a holiday home in France? No? And that all mentioned rent the places or part of them and have done for some time now?
  #333  
Old 01-19-2020, 06:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Nordic View Post
So do I.
There's also the fact that the Crown Prince, at the time (2009), had had an apanage for more than 20 years. He could have saved, invested and I think I have at some point read somewhere that there was also an inheritance after QI.

Ekstra Bladet is always "outraged" by something, especially with "big" events (OM's 80th) coming up. They always have a bigger "campaign" before or around the big DRF events. Or when the CPC or others are abroad or on holiday.

I trust all that are outraged show similar concern about QM (and PH) owning private property and J&M also owning a holiday home in France? No? And that all mentioned rent the places or part of them and have done for some time now?
Not to the same extent. At present.
And they use the old trick of calling various "experts" until they find someone who has an opinion that fits the angle of the story and then quote that expert.

It has indeed been suggested that a part of Frederik's inheritance may have gone to the house in Verbier. Lene Balleby from the PR office will not rule that out.

Oddly enough, no one seems to see a problem in the wine from Chateau Cayx being sold commercially
  #334  
Old 01-19-2020, 03:24 PM
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Hopefully the property in Verbier will be sold because it seems wasteful to me to have a property and pay for its upkeep only to have the Crown Prince Family be the only occupants, and since they are based in Denmark, will only occupy the home for a small fraction of the year.

When I first heard about the house in Verbier, which came about because of a casual comment by Crown Prince Frederick, I did not expect it to be controversial due to the fact that the Danish Royal Family has purchased property outside of the country previously. The Bloomberg article states that Danish lawmakers have to approve the purchase of foreign assets, so if that is true and Crown Prince Frederick did not comply then he should face consequences - negative media, censure, etc., but it is unclear if the lawmaker quoted thinks that there is an issue with this particular transaction, or that overall members of the DRF have purchased residences outside of Denmark. Another implied issue in the article is that the DRF is "notoriously closed" and the media does not challenge them. From my vantage point it does seem that the media is very favorable towards the DRF, especially the Crown Prince Family, but is it a broad or isolated opinion that, in return, they are "notoriously closed"?
  #335  
Old 01-19-2020, 04:27 PM
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I'm not aware of any condition of the DRF needing a political approval for buying (and selling, which QMII has also done. It was a farm) property.
The only ones who cannot freely dispose over their own money in DK are people who are put under a guardianship by a judge, because they are mentally unable to handle their own economy. A very drastic step, which I doubt is needed for the DRF.

As for being notoriously closed. Yes, that is a complaint we hear from time to time from the media, especially the tabloids. (In fact I'm almost certain I can name the paper the Bloomberg quote comes from, without even having read it!) Who pretty much demand that nothing should remain private for the DRF and who are most annoyed when they are rejected by "this is a private matter."
But of course would the same editors and journalists be willing to give up their own privacy to the same extent?
  #336  
Old 01-19-2020, 07:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Muhler View Post
Well, I am being serious.

That these meetings have not been made public does not mean they are secret. - Just that they are informal.
The DRF have informal meetings (i.e. meetings that are not listed in the official diary) all the time and with all sorts of people. Why not the military?

I do find your lack of confidence in Frederik as well as the officers somewhat worrying. The officers are professionals. They won't tell Frederik things he is not cleared to know (considering how high a clearance Frederik must have that can't be much, in regards to Danish affairs that is, NATO affairs is another matter) nor would they tell him anything they are under orders from the Minister not to tell him.
I will however find it very disturbing should a minister gag the military in regards to the DRF.

Even if they discuss defense politics, the security situation, materiel and procedures, why shouldn't they? It would I imagine be useful for Frederik to also learn about the opinions the officers, for career reasons perhaps, are reluctant to tell their political masters.
I bet Frederik has experienced at least one briefing along these lines:
"The Defense Chiefs and I are in perfect agreement in regards to the current defense policy. Right?!?" - "Yes, minister." - "You see, Your Royal Highness, there are no issues within the military."

I don't know about you, but I do not have full confidence in the politicians always presenting, shall we say, a full picture.
There's something delightfully ironic about your readiness to question the credibility of politicians while considering it "worrying" that I extend that scepticism to the military

Hold on, the meetings have very much been kept a secret to the MoD and as such the government. That's a focal point of the OLFI article. They have multiple sources confirming it independent of each other (and I'd argue Bisserup's subsequent comments confirm it as well). If you haven't read the OLFI article, I suggest you do instead of spreading misleading information.

Why not the military? Because you and I both know there's a considerable difference between meeting some of the highest-ranking officers in the military for briefings unauthorised by the government and meeting, say, people involved with organising Royal Run.

"It would I imagine be useful for Frederik to also learn about the opinions the officers, for career reasons perhaps, are reluctant to tell their political masters." That's just an absurd argument. There is no reason for a Crown Prince in a constitutional monarchy to be given information from senior military officers deliberately behind the government's back. And no, that's not the government trying to "gag the military", that's just how our constitutional monarchy works.

The problem is not that Frederik is meeting high-ranking officers (again, I think it's important to point out to readers not in the know that this concerns the very top of the Danish military). The problem is not that he's obtaining information (although I will reiterate that 1. Frederik is not obligated – nor does he need – to know everything that's going on within the defence; and 2. there are other, more appropriate means to obtain this information). The problem is that it's being done off the record. The problem is that the government hasn't been made aware of the kind of information he's been given. The problem is that the military's inner circle is not supposed to brief him without the government's knowledge. It's really not complicated. And it especially shouldn't be complicated to a Crown Prince that has studied political science.
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  #337  
Old 01-19-2020, 09:50 PM
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Thanks to both for the insights.
I really dont see the issue with these dinners. I mean do we expect disciplinary action against the military leaders? Nah.
For starters we dont know what the dinners were about.
It's not out of the realm that these could be friends catching up. Frederik does have the experience and background to have made friends in the military.
But even if military issues were discussed, Frederik has shown commitment and confidence in his role and duty to be in on dinners of this caliber.
But we dont know.

On another note. I dont see the issue with purchusing this home in Switzerland. Good investment. and is perfect for this adventure the family is on
  #338  
Old 01-20-2020, 12:41 AM
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Good heavens.

Secret, informal, confidential, non-scheduled, non-published, without minutes meetings takes place all the time. - Not least among politicians. But also in many other walks of life for that matter.

Yes, I do have more confidence in the officers and Frederik, however delightful you may find it. Ministers come and go and sit on their posts for a few years, officers and Frederik stay for many years.
But that's just little me.

I do not find it absurd that officers should for example tell Frederik, in confidence, something their political masters do not want to hear. The military results in Afghanistan springs to mind...

I was under the impression that one of the cardinal points of a democracy was a considerable degree of openness about any sitting government's policy. But you seem determined to ensure that if Frederik does not ask through the proper channels, he should not be told (or ask) anything at all. Period! Presumably that applies to the press as well? And you and me for that matter? As you put it you nor I are in the need to be informed or obliged to be informed about anything outside the proper channels if we take this to the extreme.
- We really can't have people running around finding out things for themselves. Heaven forbid.

I wonder if the thought that the governments, unofficially, did know about these meetings, has crossed your mind. As long as no one officially know anything, everybody are happy.
Rules after all are there to be bend, interpreted, challenged, stretched, checked and circumnavigated.
And it happens all the time out in the real world.

Anyway, we disagree on this matter. So be it. To me this is trivial, to you this seems to be a huge issue. Fine, you are entitled to be up in arms over this.
I don't know what you are gonna do about it though. Organize a one-woman demonstration in front of Amalienborg perhaps? Should he be admonished from the balcony of Christiansborg?
So far all I have heard from higher up the political ranks and from the government is... (The sound of crickets.)
Not to mention the general public. I arrived 1½ seconds later for work Friday, because of the huge public demonstrations against Frederik's transgression.
  #339  
Old 01-20-2020, 08:52 PM
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I don't doubt they do. But secret, informal, confidential, non-scheduled, non-published, without minutes meetings between the military and the royal family shouldn't take place.

I think experience (recent cases within the military itself come to mind) has shown that seniority isn't always a guarantee for credibility

You're comparing a royal's "right" (of which he has none) to receive briefings by some of the highest-ranking officers in the country that haven't been authorised by the government to... freedom of the press? That's not just extremes, that's straight up disrespectful to all the journalists that put their lives at risk to report.

First, I can only urge you to read the article whose raison d'être you're refuting. I think it would answer a lot of your questions and you wouldn't have to resort to making up far-fetched what-if scenarios to back up your point. As I've mentioned earlier, OLFI have multiple sources independent of each other confirming that it was agreed to keep the meetings a secret. Are you questioning their credibility? Furthermore, if we run with the suggestion that the sources aren't telling the ruth, if the MoD and/or the government had been informed of these meetings, why abstain from keeping minutes?

Yes, interchanging governments being notoriously afraid to face up to the DRF and a lack demonstrations means it can't be important That sure is an interesting ethical standpoint, what a counterargument.
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  #340  
Old 01-20-2020, 09:08 PM
Majesty
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: san diego, United States
Posts: 9,816
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nordic View Post
So do I.
There's also the fact that the Crown Prince, at the time (2009), had had an apanage for more than 20 years. He could have saved, invested and I think I have at some point read somewhere that there was also an inheritance after QI.

Ekstra Bladet is always "outraged" by something, especially with "big" events (OM's 80th) coming up. They always have a bigger "campaign" before or around the big DRF events. Or when the CPC or others are abroad or on holiday.

I trust all that are outraged show similar concern about QM (and PH) owning private property and J&M also owning a holiday home in France? No? And that all mentioned rent the places or part of them and have done for some time now?
Very good points.
It's a good investment and not too over the top
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