By Mike Small
As Britain enters an extended frenzy of Royalist genuflection, morbid celebration of the Diana cult and propaganda for an ancient feudal regime, we start the first of our series on the Royal Wedding.
God Save Johann Hari. In an article that should be framed in gold and placed over every schoolroom in the country. He writes:
“In most countries, parents can tell their kids that if they work hard and do everything right, they could grow up to be the head of state and symbol of their nation. Not us. Our head of state is decided by one factor, and one factor alone: did he pass through the womb of one aristocratic Windsor woman living in a golden palace? The US head of state grew up with a mother on food stamps. The British head of state grew up with a mother on postage stamps. Is that a contrast that fills you with pride?
He goes on to demolish the arguments for the monarchy piece by piece. Read his beautiful piece ‘This royal frenzy should embarrass us all’ right here.
After the debacle of Diana, the gin-soaked demise of Princess Margaret, the endless whitterings of Prince Charles, and the offensive gutteral buffoonery of Harry the Nazi and his racist grandfather, it’s amazing that there is still room for support for this disgraceful anachronism.
But, as Hari describes it there’s a sort of ‘cognitive disonance’ going on:
“We are always saying we should be a meritocracy, but we shriek in horror at the idea that we should pick our head of state on merit. Earlier this month, David Cameron lamented that too many people in Britain get ahead because of who their parents are. A few minutes later, without missing a beat, he praised the monarchy as the best of British. Nobody laughed.”
But there’s more than disonance, there’s mass disinterest. But republicans – or even those just profoundly alienated by such conspicuous mega-wealth in the face of austerity – don’t have a mass media and mass commerce to reflect our views.
With the news last week that Glasgow’s only street party has been cancelled due to lack of interest it’s clearer than ever that this is an event that is manufactured by the tea-towel and trinkets industry, with a state media that would make Nicolae Ceaucesceau blush and the efforts of our own moronic celebratory culture. So what to do? Pick from our selection of events and actions kick off in a week (and if we haven’t listed yours get in touch and we’ll add them in).
In place of doffing of caps, scraping and bowing Bella invites you to take your pick from a culture orgy of activities to mark the Wedding from Hell…
THE REPUBLICAN MILE
Our friends on twitter write: ‘The royal wedding is almost upon us, and with it another reminder of our status as the subjects of an unaccountable system of privilege and power’. Mysterious people plan to ‘Turn the Royal Mile into the “Republican Mile” 29 April · 11:30 – 14:30 Organisers write:
“In light of David Cameron’s reassurances that people will be allowed to freely mark this “special day”, without regard for “red tape”, we want to embrace such reassurances to express our contempt for the archaic and inherently undemocratic institution of the monarchy.
On this day, we hope to see the Royal Mile transformed into the “Republican Mile”, in a celebration of democracy and people power, and a two-fingered salute to the monarchy, the ruling classes, and all that they represent.
Bring loudhailers, sound systems, royal and political effigies; anything to make enough noise to be heard in the centres of power, whether in London or Edinburgh. Most importantly, bring a spirit of rebellion!”
OFF WITH THEIR HEADS
On Friday 29 the lovely people at Scottish Left Review invite you to a knees-up at The Stand (get yer tickets here) dubbed as ‘Your Antidote to the Royal Wedding’: A night of comedy and music with Bruce Morton, Sandy Nelson, Des Clarke, compere Susan Morrison and Music from The McClusky Brothers
Friday 29 April, 5.00pm to 7.00pm. Stand Comedy Club, 333 Woodlands Road, Glasgow G3 (near Kelvinbridge U/G)
THE GREAT DIVORCE
Over at Word Power Books, Paul Kingsnorth offers a republican theme to his poetry evening, ‘The Great Divorce! The Poetry of Radical Disconnection’.
Paul suggests: ‘Afterwards we will be repairing to a hostelry, where I will be happy to sign copies of the book in my own blood to demonstrate my unswerving loyalty to our own dear sovereign and her chiselling, horse-faced son.’
Friday 29 April 2011 at 6.30pm FREE at Word Power Books 43-45 West Nicolson Street, Edinburgh
“On the day that Britain loses itself in a beatific, plastic celebration of a Royal Wedding, we offer up a poetry of radical divorce; tales from a society legally separated from nature, memory and destiny. A caustic paean to the human empire, seen from the inside… Kidland offers up a radical, uncompromising vision of broken connections and darkening futures.”
After The Great Divorce the Neu Reekie! night at Scottish Book’s Trust, Trunk’s Close
55 High Street will have a republican theme. Neu Reekie! is a fabulous evening of avant-garde film and poetry, ran by Bellas’s own Kevin Williamson and friends…
TAKE DOWN THE UNION JACK
The details of JACK***T are scant and elusive, we’ve heard that it involves taking down the Union Jack “wherever and whenever you feel like it”, which seems entirely reasonable under the circumstances.
PLEASE ADD YOUR OWN ACTIONS AND EVENTS – EITHER LEAVE A COMMENT OR EMAIL US (SEE CONTACT DETAILS IN CALEDONIA DREAMING SECTION)