Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Monarchists: Our Own Worst Enemies?

Having cordially linked to my previous post on King Juan Carlos, my friend the "Mad Monarchist" expresses his frustration with the way many self-proclaimed monarchists seem to devote more energy to attacking contemporary monarchies, monarchs, and monarchists that don't live up to their unrealistic expectations than to attacking republics and republicans. I know exactly what he means and recommend his post--and his blog in general--to all who might not yet be familiar with it.

In the movie Nicholas & Alexandra, Trotsky once exclaims to Lenin, "you hate anyone who isn't your type of Bolshevik more than you hate the Tsar!" Monarchists need to make sure we're not the mirror image of that. Ideological purity may have worked for the Bolsheviks, but it will never work for us.


MadMonarchist said...

How apprioriate -I just watched that movie again last night. Another good comparison there is how the US did not want to enter WW1 until after the fall of the Romanovs because, while fighting in defense of democratic monarchies was okay, they would not fight on the same side as Tsarist Russia. Of course the result was not a more democratic Russia but a communist dictatorship far more brutal than the Romanovs ever dreamed of being.

On the post linked to, I got a comment (which I could not approve for reasons of insulting content) from someone else who said they despised republicans and yet would still rather have a British republic than a monarchy under the Windsors. Now, you know well I'm sure my own Jacobite sympathies but the fact is that the only options are the Windsors or a republic. Centuries of change cannot be undone at a stroke and these people who oppose monarchies they don't like while republicanism is growing ever stronger need to remember the advice of the man who finds himself in a hole -the first step to getting out is to stop digging!

The world did not get to where it is because of one huge change, but lots of incrimental changes over time and it is going to take the same thing to effect a restoration. One monarch or one monarchy cannot do it alone all at once. It means stopping the bleeding, shoring up what vestiges of the old order are left and then step by step working our way back to recovery.

J.K. Baltzersen said...


I certainly reserve the right to criticize emasculated monarchies in my criticism of modern democracy. I also reserve the right to ask questions about the point of totally emasculated monarchs. On the other hand, I can't see how any successor republics with any reasonable probability can be any better, and I surely don't trust those who would be "entrusted" with task of implementing these successor republics.

But then I suspect I am not in the center of the critique put forward in this blog post, but I may be wrong.

Sacrificing monarchs by having them challenge the politicos is probably not good strategy -- neither in the short nor the long term. Yet we must remember that we do have some activist monarchs who are so successfully.

Our battle can be compared to a war. Having monarchs challenge the political power could probably be compared to sending an important category of men to hill tops, so they can be gunned down by the enemy.

Theodore Harvey said...

No Jørn I wasn't talking about you. :)

Jim714 said...

Thanks for posting this. My personal view is that too many monarchist arguments are embedded in sectarian religious positions that are so arcane even the co-religionists of those who hold them have difficulty comprehending the logic. This simply makes the monarchist argument seem obscure in general. Personally, I think what is needed is a secular basis for the monarchist position.


Theodore Harvey said...

While I have made secular arguments for monarchy and believe them to be valid and useful, if we say monarchism has to be secular than we alienate religious believers for whom their monarchism is linked to their religion, of whom I myself am one. I am an Anglican and while I support the non-Christian monarchies of non-Christian countries, I would not want the British monarchy and its coronation ceremony to be secularized or pluralized; in fact I would oppose that.

I'm trying to steer a middle course in which monarchism avoids sectarianism while also respecting the religious dimension.

Also, note that most of those defending King Juan Carlos here and at my forum have been Christians, even firmly "pro-life" ones, themselves, they just don't agree with the condemnatory approach of some reactionary Christians.