A perfect defence against anti-queen whingers?

A fresh attempt to write satire by Newton Emerson in today’s Irish Times with what he has grandly styled an armoury of facts: a perfect defence against anti-queen whingers. In total he provides twelve rebuttals including several to arguments I’ve never ever heard made anywhere (including many of the not-so-royalist hostelries in Belfast and environs). So far, most people I’ve met (in the south) don’t seem to care either way, if they even hold an opinion on the subject. I suspect there may be less of an issue with protests and more of an issue with apathy.

Is apathy permissible? Or is it going to be even more offensive?

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  • Newt’s naming seems outdated: Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, Ireland and the British Dominions beyond the Seas Queen, Defender of the Faith.

    Theyworkforyou: Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith

  • Okay, I sniggered at this one…

    9. She must apologise for the Famine

    She almost certainly will. That should earn a brief moment of silence from the world’s second-fattest country.

  • Well spotted, Nevin… He shoe horned that one in, probably at the behest of the letters’ editor. 🙂

  • wee buns

    Apathy, for once, would be a perfectly appropriate response.

  • john

    Satire???? I thought satire was clever and funny???

    1. Troops still present – only fewer

    2. Fair point although Charles is her son

    3. All heads of state should be elected!

    4. Can of worms this. What about the rest of the plundered empire never mind Ireland. She might have to sell more than a few of her paintings.

    5. Hundreds of years out of date law but why bother changing it. It only offends tens of millions of her own subjects worldwide. It could be worse it could have had a racist element too.

    6. She can change her name no problem there, never stopped Cliff, Elton or Michael Caine from stardom

    7. If it wasnt for the good old USA we all hate so much the whole of Europe would be ruled by Germany

    8. Why should someone be so privileged. Its not like god has chosen her. There have been so many breaks in the lineage that many random joes probably have more right to be sat on the throne than her

    9. Whats done is done. Hearing an empty apology will please noone and yes shame on UK and Ireland for being a bunch of porkers

    10. Bavarian Orange has covered this one already – looks like a cost effective approach


    11. Will make no difference. People are not going to come to Dublin just because the queen has, considering she has pretty much been everywhere anyway. As for a riot doubt there will be one but the riots in London over tuition fees hardly stopped the masses coming though

    12. Fair point she has been in Northern Ireland many times so i honestly dont see the fuss about a granny visiting Dublin. Im sure she will enjot it and be well recieved

  • Mick Fealty

    Can we try to stick to Fair Use principles when we cut and paste from elsewhere? [Clipping John’s post shortly] [clipped! J. eile – anyone wants to know what the 1 to 12 are – please read the link in the original post]

    My favourite:

    “7. Her real name is Elizabeth Saxe-Coburg Gotha

    Is anyone in Ireland seriously going to sneer about being ruled by Germans? Seriously?”

    Now, unless you are a completely humourless stone, that IS funny>>>

  • abucs

    I don’t see why there needs to be a defense for the British Queen. She is head of state of the nearest neighbour of whom we have good relations and she hasn’t done anything personally that warrants an apology to Ireland, as far as i can see. The ‘defense’ seems to cause more problems that it set out to solve. Just be good hosts like the British would be for the Irish.

  • smcgiff, Private Eye sometimes takes the piss out of editors/journalists/columnists who leave it to sub-editors to ‘fill in the detail’!!

  • Drumlins Rock

    Newt at his best, good balance of humour and comment, but mainly humour.

    BTW she is a democratic monarch, in that she is indirectly elected by the people, ie. they elect Parliament who continue to retain the monarchy, it is generally accepted that a monarch who ceased to have the support of Parliament and the people would have to abdicate, as happened with Edward VIII.

  • “most British people watching a riot [in Dublin] will think to themselves” … ‘Gosh, we could do with some more of those hairy-knuckled baton wielders in the Met’.

  • joeCanuck

    she hasn’t done anything personally that warrants an apology to Ireland..

    Nope, she just had the misfortune of birth and no-one can apologise for the actions for others. Regret at the most, if asked.

  • John Ó Néill

    Sorry DR, but I can’t let that Uncle Andy moment pass without comment: a democratic monarch?

    By definition the world over a monarch is someone who reigns over a state or territory, usually for life and by hereditary right, which is the polar opposite of ‘democratic’.

    Do people genuinely advance that argument and expect it to be taken at face value?

  • Drumlins Rock

    John, couldn’t resist stirring on that one, however does Edward VIII not illustrate that it is not necessarily for life but also subject to the will of parliament?

  • John Ó Néill


    I don’t think you can sustain that argument since the British parliament has no role in appointing or electing the monarch or dismissing them.

  • Greenflag


    Edward VIII -You mean Edward VIII (Edward Albert Christian George Andrew Patrick David; later The Duke of Windsor; 23 June 1894 – 28 May 1972) was King of the United Kingdom and the Dominions of the British Commonwealth, and Emperor of India, from 20 January to 11 December 1936.

    He had of course more than enough names but it did not stop those who are less respectful of the institution .

    ‘There was a young monarch called Ed .
    Who took Mrs Simpson to bed .
    As they bounced up and down .
    He said ‘Bugger the Crown ‘
    We’ll give it to Albert instead .

    Albert later became George VI the eh ‘stutterer ‘ and father of present Queen and was played by the Cabra ‘native ‘ Michael Gambon in the Oscar winning ‘The Kings Speech ‘
    Derek Jacobi also plays a role as the Archbishop of Canterbury -Jacobi is well known for his brilliant acting as another imperial stutterer in the’ I Claudius ‘ TV series.

    If you haven’t seen it even anti monarchists will enjoy it . The somewhat less than obsequios attitude of Australian stutterer curer Logue

    ‘Her real name is Elizabeth Saxe-Coburg Gotha’

    Is anyone in Ireland seriously going to sneer about being ruled by Germans? Seriously?”

    Have to agree with Mick -that is funny

    I think the plain people of Ireland would give the edge to Elizabeth Saxe Coburg Gotha over Ollie Rehm any day or that Barosso f***er ;)?

  • farneygirl

    To be fair, the only other comment I’ve heard about the Queen paying us a visit was Gerry Adams declaring it was “too soon”. From where I’m standing the sooner the better – get the “historic first visit to the Republic” out of the way so we might actually, genuinely have a normal relationship with our closest neighbour & biggest trading partner.

    Most people in the south don’t care about this any more than they would care about Queen Beatrix or King Juan Carlos dropping in but there’s always the risk of being shamed by protesters who’ve forgotten – or never learned – how to stage a demonstration against something while retaining a bit of dignity.

    They have a perfect right to protest but they should bear in mind that pictures from the visit will be beamed around the world and if our head of state has invited another head of state over, then protesting with violence, whatever reasons they believe justify it, is a disgrace and will disgrace Irish people everywhere.

  • john

    Apologies Mick looks like I gave you a bit of extra work this morning having to tidy up my post

    ‘John, couldn’t resist stirring on that one, however does Edward VIII not illustrate that it is not necessarily for life but also subject to the will of parliament?’

    Very true DR the way things are going we may end up having some reality type x factor to choose the monarch so maybe we better leave things as they are.

  • Gf, FYI, Andreas Michael Friedrich Hans Armin Siegfried Hubertus is the current head of the House of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.

  • Neil

    Point 1: Most of the 5,000 British troops officially based in Northern Ireland have been deployed to Afghanistan, so they are actually occupying someone else’s country.

    Good to see acceptance of the fact that the Brits are at their old tricks, occupying other people’s countries. Some had made the pretence that it wasn’t an occupation, and that the troops were merely supporting the ‘democratically’ elected government and troops.

    Point 2: She is nominal head of all UK armed forces

    Exactly. Not much of a rebuttal, just a confirmation of what we already knew. Cheers Newton.

    Point 3: She’s unelected head of state.

    Newsflash. Republicans really couldn’t care who’s head of state in Britain. We aren’t part of it, and we don’t care if Jesus himself rules that country.

    Point 4: In fact, having lost her uncle to an IRA bomb in the Republic, the queen is owed €15,000 by the Remembrance Commission

    Good, at 15k per life lost she can subtract her payment from what she owes us then.

    Point 5: She can’t marry a Catholic. And just how does this oppress the hairy-knuckled sons of Erin? Had their hearts set on a civil partnership with Prince William?

    Nice defence of a little bit of irrelevant sectarianism there but the point is that there is obvious sectarianism in place. If you want to defend it go ahead, but sectarian it undeniably is. Regarding the civil partnership ‘joke’ I’m sure Newton’s aware that there are Catholic females as well as males – most of them have knuckles that are relatively hair free.

    Point 6: Her real name is Elizabeth Windsor. No, her real name is Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of Great Britain, Ireland and the British Dominions beyond the Seas Queen, Defender of the Faith.

    Couldn’t care less what she calls herself, any more than she could care what I call her. And as pointed out, trying to be a smartarse doesn’t work when you’re technically incorrect. Learn her official titel yourself Newt.

    Point 7: Her real name is Elizabeth Saxe-Coburg Gotha Is anyone in Ireland seriously going to sneer about being ruled by Germans? Seriously?

    Probably not Newt, in the north we’re well used to it by now. In the south they couldn’t really care less about the queen, irrelevant as she is.

    Point 8: The whole concept of monarchy is offensive

    Not necessarily an argument you’re likely to hear in the Felons, or anywhere else for that matter, but gladly Newton doesn’t excuse it as inoffensive. Either way we consider it an irrelevance. She ain’t our queen. You want to grovel to some auld bird that’s never done a day’s work in her life, you go right ahead.

    Point 9: She must apologise for the Famine She almost certainly will. That should earn a brief moment of silence from the world’s second-fattest country.

    Inherent in that statement is that she should and will apologise for the famine. Proper order.

    Point 10: Policing will cost a fortune Not exactly. Policing the protesters will cost a fortune. Policing the queen is completely unnecessary

    Bit disengenious there. If Lizzie was visiting central London she would be protected by a team of people. So policing Lizzie costs money in her own country you can rest assured it will do so in ours.

    Point 11: There’ll be no tourist boost A fair point.

    Who’s supposed to be whingeing in this scenario? There most likely will be a tourist boost, possibly not from Brits, but maybe tourists in and around Ireland will converge on Dublin to get a photo or two.

    Point 12: It’s just too soon

    Actually the one argument someone has actually made. Personally I don’t care one way or another. Some people like her, some hate her. Personally I couldn;t care less about her, but am aware that some folks round these parts are quite keen, and fair play to them.

    Basically Newton’s ‘article’ has thrown a certain amount of offense south – ironically where most people don’t feel too strongly one way or the other, and many will be quite keen for her to visit, coupled with a total disregard for the actual opinions of his Northern neighbours. It’s neither funny nor particularly clever, but then it wasn’t designed to be. It’s true design is to wind up people, who for the most part couldn’t care less whether she lives or dies.

  • The Word

    It’s hard to knock the Queen really.

    She personnally signifies death in Christian terms for a variety of reasons, including the absurd wealth, the nature of her relationships with others that defer to that absurd wealth, and that dying voice.

    I have no personal angst with her, but others with rather well-hidden and not-so-well-hidden agendas use her to pass on a corruption of Christian values.

    Those values are certainly in competition with Christ’s values.

  • joeCanuck

    It’s hard to knock the Pope really.

    He personally signifies death in Christian terms for a variety of reasons, including the absurd wealth, the nature of his and his minions relationships with others that defer to that absurd wealth, and that dying voice.

    I have no personal angst with him, but others with rather well-hidden and not-so-well-hidden agendas cooperate with him to pass on a corruption of Christian values.

    Those values are certainly in competition with Christ’s values.

  • Greenflag

    JC –

    That’s good -makes the point and saves time . I’ve often used the same technique when some ultra loyalist gets ‘obsessed ‘ with attacking SF or the ‘Irish ‘ generally without ever looking in the mirror 🙂

    You can’t argue with the Word – Remember this chap talks directly to God and receives ‘answers’ on a daily basis . Moon wired and addicted to lunatic soup is not a sound basis for ‘free thinking’ 😉

  • “It’s hard to knock the Queen really.”

    The Word, it seems your angst is out of kilter with the words of Pope Benedict XVI.

  • The Word


    I’m sure the Pope is expressing diplomatic language in his speech. But it’s really one of those knowing but not understanding speeches where Catholic tend to massage British egos while remembering that ape, Henry VIII.

  • The Word


    It’s come to that, Joe. Try to compare Pope with Queen. I suppose she was some Rottweiller in her day. You couldn’t get an erroneous philosophical ordering past her huge intellect and her relentless pursuit of the truth was second to none.

    It must be those Corgis who are advising her.

  • The Word, you’re on sticky ground when you mention wealth or back in the day.

  • The Word

    Now, Nevin, you’re mentioning possible corruption in Vatican finances. I’d say it will or has already come to nothing. There are some bitter people around and getting the Vatican any or some blame might be something that the Vatican has to live with.

    But then there’s Prince Andrew, Fergie, not to mention grants from the taxpayer when royals have all this income coming in.

    Catholics give out of the goodness of their hearts.

  • The Word, concentration camp survivors are worthy of a more considered epithet than ‘bitter’.

  • The Word

    Yes, but they’re not driving the agenda. The lawyers are, with their law of “an eye for an eye.”

  • The Word, it seems that daring to mention the Croatian camps to a southern audience was rather too much for a Papal representative. Perhaps there’s an opportunity for others as well as the Queen to make an apology.

  • The Word


    I’m not seeking any apology from the Queen.

    I like to see people evaluating their lives, the myths and the dangers that lurk behind their myths. The Queen doesn’t need to apologise, but waken up to what she’s signalling to others about her life, its material basis that she might not even notice, and the loaded presumptions that are taken as gospel by others who tend to think that her way is the optimal position for, dare we say it, a Christian. She is the leader of a Church, is she not?

    I have no interest in the proposed apology for the famine. That was down to a politician’s argument.

  • Greenflag

    Meanwhile the philandering priests of Philadelphia continue with as many as 37 priests remaining in active ministry with allegations or reports of inappropriate behavior or sexual abuse of minors.

    RC now stands for Rotten Church as it continues to protect those who have broken the law 🙁


  • And there’s another priest from here under investigation

  • andnowwhat

    Since el papa is being mentioned, I was reading a review of the book “The Popes” by John Julius Norwich in the Sunday Mail.

    Not that it is news but a fantastic reminder of what a bunch of sick, evil, perverted murdering bar stewards so many of them were. Actually, it was the TV production of the Borgias that awoke me to what a pile of crap the post of the pope was.

    Back to Phil the Greek’s missus, I really do not get the monarchy thing. Where does all our healthy cynicism and analysis go to when it comes to this? How is it conducive to a modern democracy? I just do not get it.

    BTW, I don’t hold it against her personally.

    BTW, is there not some small print (no doubt going back to the insane Henry VIII) about the monarch being the representative of god a la el papa

    PS. I’m not a pope basher Word. John Paul I is someone I admire(d) greatly. I honestly believe that some things would have been greatly changed in the world and the church had he lived

  • fordprefect

    Just to pick up on what Farneygirl said about Gerry Adams saying it’s too soon etc. etc. etc., I have asked any Sinn Feiners on Slugger about ten times now (and still haven’t got an answer), so, here goes again, could any of you please explain to me why SF is wringing it’s hands and howling about Lizzies trip to the Free State, while at the same time they whooped and cheered to get Derry made “UK” city of culture in 2013? Don’t all rush at once now!

  • Brian

    “Catholics give out of the goodness of their hearts.”

    Actually, they have often given to avoid eternal damnation.

    I don’t remember too many Republicans I know whooping and cheering to get Derry made a “UK” city of culture. Maybe they were doing that in Derry, but they wouldn’t have been the only ones in Derry that were happy. Being a UK City of Culture would be good for tourism for the city so everyone would benefit from it. One can be happy have their city recognized, as well.

    That is far different than having a foreign monarch recognized and celebrated on the very land where her ancestors were largely responsible for hundreds of years of oppression.

    It is hardly an apples to apples comparison.

  • The Word

    “UK” city of culture in 2013″

    That should be good for the city, good for all its people and might even be good for other reasons than people generally think. It should be good for us all in our endeavours.

    It could be a gesture that is reciprocated for a change.

  • andnowwhat

    I would imagine that the city of culture will attract quite a few queens if my experience of the arty farty world is anything to go by

  • fordprefect

    I said Sinn Feiners not Republicans.” Being a “UK” city of culture would be good for tourism for the city so everyone would benefit from it”, not “everyone” businessmen/women will benefit alright, the ordinary people won’t. You say a “foreign” monarch Brian, but, SF recognise the 6 county state and administer British here, so, how is she a foreign monarch to SF?

  • tacapall

    What a b..lbag Netwon is, how low can you go, calling republicans wingers when this freeloader billionaire, who’s family pays for nothing and live off the backs of the working class – the poor, while at the same time stand idily by while her loyal servants murder and plunder the world stealing anything worth of value from other countries in her name, for her and her socialite friends who live lavish lifestyles on the backs of the dead and working class. Yeah there’s not many British soldiers in the six counties today but theres hundreds of MI5 agents and a brand new state of the art British intelligence headquarters in Hollywood, Co Down to make sure nothing changes.

  • andnowwhat

    I would earnestly love a royalist to explain to me and other republicans why they support the monarchy in the 21st century. I’m not attacking them or anything, I honestly do not get it.

    I can see nothing of merit in their actions or position but maybe I am missing something

  • fordprefect

    Spot on.
    Same here, I remember a right few years back (can’t remember the paper I read it in), but, it said that there should be a serious physco-analysis of the British people (not all of them of course) about why they get on the way they do over the royal family). Like you, I just don’t get it. Did you see the way “journalists” here in the north were getting on the other day when Kate and Wills visited here? I honestly thought Natasha Sayee was having an orgasm outside Hillsborough castle reporting on it!

  • John Ó Néill

    Fordprefect – like Newt – I think you are assuming that SF have much of an opinion on this. Apart from being asked what they thought when it was announced (surely every editor added a SFer to the checklist every journo had to get quotes from), there hasn’t exactly been a fuss made about it. Hence my point in the original post – apathy looks like the order of the day.

  • Mark

    Apathy should be the order of the day . While no one expected Sinn Fein to roll out the green carpet , I think they realise that to protest too much only plays into the hands of people who expect and want them to protest too much.

    If the recent GE11 has showed us anything , it is that Sinn Fein have become rather asute in reading how the South are feeling .

    There is a difference however between a warm welcome and the fawning and pandering that John Bruton show when Charlie was last here . I’m sure Enda and the gang won’t make the same mistake.

  • andnowwhat

    QE II visits the ROI just as a FG (led) goverment gets in to power.

    Now, that’s timing.

  • fordprefect

    John O’Neill
    Yes, people don’t seem to give a shit about Lizzie’s visit one way or another.
    I agree with you, only, “Da Norderners” i.e. Gerry Adams seem to be making a fuss over it.

  • andnowwhat


    Royual reports are what remote controls were invented for. I turned over straight away.

    Talkback was almost exclusively about the visit and Maxine Mawhinney and their reporter gushed.

    I would love to see a regional; breakdown of the monarchy’s popularity in GB. I can’t see people in forgotten and damned ex mining or steel towns giving a fig about them.

    I wonder if the royal family are just a security blanket as a reminder of when Britain was great and helps with the illusion that it still is

  • wee buns

    Interesting piece in today’s Donegal Democrat:
    ‘Protestants don’t want Queen to visit Mullaghmore – Rev Mitchell’
    The gist of the Sligo Presbyterian Minister’s statement is that there is still a fear here that the locals would suffer because of the visit, and would be afraid of repercussions, which apparently is the reason for not having a commemoration for the victims of an IRA bomb planted on Mountbatten’s boat. He goes on to say:
    ‘It’s sad that it’s not a fully normal society that we’re living in, that people would take such offense to the idea of a memorial’
    What is interesting is the idea (rarely spoken) that southern society is not ‘fully normal.’
    People are so adept at living with an underlying divide, it’s almost a surprise to be reminded that wounds exist…..but are invisible……until something ‘happens’.

  • Greenflag


    ‘I would love to see a regional; breakdown of the monarchy’s popularity in GB.’

    A recent BBC report had about 28% of Britons as ‘republicans ‘ i.e anti monarchy with a further 31% not caring less one way or the other which would give about 40% as flag waving Queenie afficionados so that’s more than the Tory vote in Britain . Of the 40% ‘monarchists ‘ I would assume that there is a sliding scale of support from the South East to the North with just a few spikes of support in parts of Scotland and Northern Ireland where support for the monarchy is ‘coded’ into local politics and religious denomination .

    Protesting against the Queen’s visit will just increase the popularity ratings of the monarchy among the pro monarchy crowd and even raise some sympathy for this aged Queen among the could’nt care less crowd.

    ‘QE II visits the ROI just as a FG (led) goverment gets in to power.

    Now, that’s timing.’

    Nothing to do with FG but probably more to do with visiting before Mrs McAleese leaves the Presidency . It would have caused immense mirth and provided cartoonists with content galore if HRH visited next year and was greeted by the elected Queen of Ireland -ex Senator David Norris -Bloomsday botherer and fan of Georgian architecture -Trinity gay and a protestant to boot .

    Queenie I’m sure would have been mortified and the Duck of Edinburgh would have been unrestrainable as he attempted to find adequate words to describe the scenario of the British Queen meeting the Irish (eh) President . Both the Telegraph and Newsletter and even our Indie would accuse the Irish of ‘deliberately’ putting one up the monarchy by electing David Norris :)?

  • Greenflag

    moochin ,

    And there’s another priest from here under investigation.

    Saw that item . No comment from the Word made flesh yet :)?

    ‘It’s not happening said the ostrich as he once again stuck his head in the sand and pretended that those lions who were heading his way would not have him for lunch ‘

  • Mainland Ulsterman

    Re apologies – not sure the Queen needs to apologise for the Famine. I have no big problem either way but it would be meaningless. An awful thing of course, but it was an inadequate response to a potato disease at the end of the day. It was also at the time the largest ever response to a humanitarian disaster by any government. Not good enough by a long chalk, but by standards of the times, not so remarkably worse than other governments around the world responded to their famines.

    Perhaps all modern governments should just issue a blanket acknowledgement that they all used to be worse on human rights, humanitarian aid, democracy and fighting wars than today and apologise to the people of the past for it all. Or would that be a bit absurd?

  • Greenflag

    ‘Or would that be a bit absurd?

    It would . First you’d have to qualify what you mean by ‘all modern governments ‘ . Somalia for instance doesn’t have a government and has’nt had one since 1991 .Then there’s North Korea which regularly starves it’s own people so that it’s army can be fed . And there are countless other countries around the modern world most of them ex colonies who are going through long term economic and political withdrawal symptoms and indulging in mini genocides or active discrimination against minority populations under their ‘control’ . The ‘principle’ of hereditary control continues to exist even in North Korea a so called people’s democracy .

    Mubarak of Egypt probably could have stayed in power had he not planned to install his son as his successor . It seems there is a record of the sons of many of these dictators , Ghaddafi, Ceaucescu , Saddam Hussein, Slobodan Milosevic, Kim Il Sung, etc becoming even more ‘twisted ‘ than their fathers and many became rapists , murderers , thieves and displayed the ‘spoiled brat’ syndrome that’s more commonly noticed among the scions of aristocracy -without any of the constitutional limitations .

    Far more useful to people everywhere today if all modern governments (particularly in the developed world ) were to acknowledge that they used to be able to control the banks and their economies but that now they have given up their democratic rights and rule only at the whim and behest of the world’s top banking corporations via the IMF .

    Now that would NOT be absurd ;(

  • Neil


    More examples of Republicans singularly failing to ‘howl at the moon’ as one Unionist described our response.

    The Queen is an irrelevance. No-one I know could care less about her visit The closest example to ‘howling at the moon’ is Gerry Adams’ statement ‘it’s too soon’. Hardly a massive over reaction.

    Sorry folks, but the anti-queen whingers haven’t really been in evidence, it would appear Newton’s taking aim at a missing target.

  • JR

    Mainland Ulsterman, I agree that an apology from the queen would be meaningless but I can’t let you away with making a comment

    “by standards of the times, not so remarkably worse than other governments around the world responded to their famines”.

    Assistant treasuary secetary incharge of Famine relief described the famine as a “mechanism for reducing surplus population”

    “The judgement of God sent the calamity to teach the Irish a lesson, that calamity must not be too much mitigated. …The real evil with which we have to contend is not the physical evil of the Famine, but the moral evil of the selfish, perverse and turbulent character of the people”.

    All while the country exported food.