Tuesday, January 6, 2015

What does it matter really?

Yesterday Farrar  raised the coming 800th anniversary of the signing of the Magna Carta at Runnymede on June 15th 1215 where unpopular King John reigning with extraordinary dominion through sovereignty, made moves to rearrange his power and right to rule with a few Barons who individually had almost unlimited authority over those living within their fiefdoms and threatened stability of the realm with  rebellion.

Written in Latin and understood by few other than the better educated clergy and even an even smaller proportion of the citizenry fortunate to have been able to enjoy benefits of learning, this much celebrated and misunderstood document was actually just one   in a long series of treaties and similar documents designed almost exclusively as a measure to achieve peace in otherwise intractable circumstances then elevated by those who saw opportunity to reassess its meaning with manipulations for further political gains.

Not very different to our own Treaty of Waitangi that has itself been rewritten and interpreted by some who have  serious political agendas, to conform with interpretations never intended by its authors acting in the name of Queen Victoria to bring order to the warring tribes of indigenous Maori, many of whom were solely interested in the fact it might prevent further fighting and subsequent domination between them. All the while the vast majority of their peoples enslaved or just ruled over by the signing  Chiefs  had little or zero concept of what they were being signed up to.

Meanwhile "The Great Charter" that was almost immediately rewritten soon after its proclamation and with King John's death resulting in a regency in the name of his young son Henry III, it was reissued in 1216 and then again as an instrument of negotiation between subsequent rulers and the Barons over taxes and the associated power in later years.

Until the reign of Charles the 1st when such troubled power sharing became  a constitutional battle between the Monarch and the Parliament that was brought to its climax when Cromwell and his parliament removed Charles' head.

Today Farrar is raising as a ploy in support of his clearly stated republican beliefs, the completely erroneous idea that the ascension as our monarch of the rather quaint and somewhat unusual Prince of Wales could have significant constitutional influence for the UK and hence NZ who share the British Monarchy as Head of State.
Utter Bollocks, as HoS the British crown has no power to realign our government functions, our Parliament is the supreme authority we are ruled by and even if Herr Schmitz had succeeded and we were now under the rule of Cunliffe, Norman, Peters Harre and Hadfield in the form of a hydra we must believe that should such a mob of misfits and halfwits attempt to alter our forms of government there would be sufficient among the disabled seeking power, with sufficient  honor to stand with the opposition and force a dissolution of the parliament.

Yes it could happen but should what some may suggest is a naive belief threaten us, then without any acceptance that the parliament is  supreme and it only rules with the consent of the people we are truly screwed and I am certain such a prospect is still beyond reality.

I am a firm Monarchist and some of what Charles (GeorgeVII) has stated in revelation of his thinking, causes dismay and wonderment, constitutionally he is emasculated by the current status of our unwritten constitutional process.
Since September 1907 when the then Monarch Edward the 7th proclaimed NZ as a Dominion, our Parliament advises the GG as the Monarchs agent and the GG is bound to accept the advice and act within it.
The power so divested to the GG is limited to acting on the advice of the government represented by assumed authority from a majority in the parliament.while  the GG retains a counsel and consulting function only.

His only intervention available, as was  run by Sir John Kerr in dismissing Whitlam and then only by manipulating any threat of Kerr's dismissal by the Monarch which was achieved as a close run thing.

Whatever Charles or King George the 7th as is suggested, actually does as our Monarch it will only  be ultimately of no consequence and my only fear would be one of  embarrassment.


JC said...

"and my only fear would be one of embarrassment."

And that of course is good and sufficient reason to bugger off from the Crown. If Charles had stuck with rooting and knocking off a few of his rellies I'd be happy enough and even madness is no real handicap but aligning madness, green bullshit and accompanying goody two shoes smugness is a step too far.


Paranormal said...

So JC, would you prefer Helen Clark as our president?

JC said...

No, for the same reason as for Charles. The only way a President works for us is something akin to the GG role, ie largely ceremonial, limited tenure, elected by and subsumed by Parliament.

I agree with Veteran that the Monarch has been largely harmless for a couple of hundred years but its largely because they knew their limitations and their role. With Charles you could have a particularly dense fellow who neither understands nor limits himself to his role and could be around for more than 30 years.. more than enough time to destroy the image of British royalty.


The Veteran said...

I remain a monarchist as long as 'Liz' is still with us. After that all bets are off. I have no desire to have as my King someone whose greatest wish was to be a 'tampax' and who now thinks he can promote his ideas and prejudices to a duly elected government.

JC has it about right with a President limited to a largely ceremonial role with limited tenure, nominated following agreement between the PM and the Leader of the Opposition and subsumed by Parliament.