Thursday, October 29, 2009

More on Jean d'Orléans

The Telegraph notices France's would-be king, who correctly and admirably dares to argue that the French Revolution was a horrible mistake. I wish journalists reporting on the French succession dispute would mention that the Orléans are descended in the male line not only from King Louis Philippe (1773-1850), but from Louis XIV's younger brother Philippe (1640-1701), which is the true basis of their present-day claim, if the 1713 renunciations of Philip V of Spain are accepted as valid, the senior French Bourbon line having sadly died out in 1883.

I also wish journalists would not refer to princes as "Mr"!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Time for Kings

While as an Episcopalian I obviously don't share their "Feeneyite" Roman Catholic religious beliefs, I'm pleased to see the [New Hampshire] Saint Benedict Center endorsing the introductory statement for "The Monarchist Club" on Facebook, to which I belong.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Afghanistan's Golden Age

It is a fond myth of progressives that despite various setbacks, things in general have been continually improving and "there has never been a better time to be alive than now" (an actual quotation from British leftist Polly Toynbee of The Guardian). One of the countries in which this is most obviously untrue is Afghanistan. Contrary to the widely believed cliché that Afghanistan has always been inherently "ungovernable," Afghanistan was actually quite governable and a relatively decent place to live under the monarchy from the 1930s through the 1970s, as this New York Times article points out.

(Link suggested by my brother, who will be moving there next year to teach violin and viola in Kabul.)

Saturday, October 10, 2009

King Jean IV

One of the most frustrating things about being a monarchist today is that all too often, it seems like the royal individuals who are genealogically entitled to claim Europe's vacant thrones are perfectly content to make peace with the republics that have supplanted their families and have little interest in advocating restoration. However, as this article reveals in a refreshing contrast, Jean d'Orléans, Duke of Vendome, second (but oldest non-disabled) son of the Count of Paris, is openly and courageously promoting the restoration of the French monarchy, no matter how unlikely this may seem at present.

Since the extinction of the senior French Bourbon line in 1883, France's royalists have been bitterly divided between supporters of Jean's Orléans line (descended in the male line of Louis XIV's younger brother Philippe) and supporters of the Spanish Bourbons (descended in the male line from Louis XIV himself and therefore genealogically senior but arguably excluded by the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht). I myself have tended to waffle on this debate, but recently have been more inclined to regard the Orléans claim as superior, and Jean's admirable forthrightness certainly confirms those sympathies. Vive le roi!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Monarchies: Better Places to Live

The United Nations Human Development Index ranks the world's countries in terms of quality of life. In 2009, the Kingdom of Norway ranked first, with the Republic of Niger on the bottom. As in previous years, monarchists can take heart from what the report suggests.

Monarchies (including Andorra) unfortunately make up only 43, or less than 24%, of the 182 countries ranked. However, of the 38 top-rated countries ("Very High Human Development"), fully 19, or 50%, are monarchies; of the top 20, 12, or 60%, are monarchies. So much for republican claims that retaining a constitutional monarchy holds a country back!

The bottom 24 ("Low Human Development")? You guessed it: all republics!

Queen "appalled" by current Church of England?

This Telegraph article is interesting, though more speculative than factual. I do recall reading that Anglican modernists have criticised Her Majesty for apparently preferring to worship (as do I) at services conducted in traditional Prayer Book language by an all-male clergy, and her son Prince Charles (who the bishop who baptised me once met at a Prayer Book Society gathering) is known for his support of the 1662 liturgy. However the Queen has always struck me as a very Protestant sort of Anglican, not at all Anglo-Catholic, and indeed the clearest evidence the article presents of her dissatisfaction with the current state of the Church of England is a sympathetic but noncommittal response to conservative evangelicals. Nevertheless I'm sure the Queen will be a gracious hostess to the Pope, as she always is.