Giles Fraser says Meghan Markle will make the royals more Jesus-like

I swear, I used to read the Guardian as my go-to paper in the UK years ago, but I wouldn’t read it now. One reason is its mawkish catering to faith, as instantiated by the new column below. The author, Giles Fraser, is a broadcaster, writer, and Anglican priest. He’s combined the last two into a thoroughly ridiculous column (ongoing name, “Loose Canon”) with a misleading heading (click on it to go to article)

After beefing that the idea of “monarchy” in England is the “Old Testament” idea of kingship—one of grandeur and authority—Fraser longs for the return of the “New Testament” idea of kingship (yes, for Britain), which emphasizes humility and the hegemony of religious law over secular law. (He quotes the Archbishop of Canterbury as saying that he, Justin Welby, is an “extremist” because he puts his faith above the law.)

Here’s Fraser saying why he wants the monarchy to be more like Jesus:

But the theological picture is not yet complete. Because, for Christians, this monarchy is not as it is popularly imagined. Indeed, the kingship of Jesus is a total inversion of the whole power and gold crowns and wealth thing. Power is renounced. His coronation was on a cross, wiping spit from his face. His crown was made up of thorns, digging into his head. The moment in which he becomes king looks to all the world like an abdication. He may have been born in royal David’s city, but that is where the comparisons end. In Jesus, monarchy is redefined, upended.

This is why it is so disappointing that the coronation service draws almost exclusively from Old Testament ideas of kingship, and the servant king hardly gets a mention. Perhaps the priestly courtiers over at Westminster Abbey would think it rude to remind the monarch that Christian kingship is an indignity. They want the coronation to be all about the glamour of dressing up and processing, all ermine and orbs and the music of Handel’s glorious Zadok the Priest – King Solomon’s priestly courtier.

But what about the headline? Why is Meghan Markle, who isn’t even a member of the Church of England (she’s going to convert, which I think is the law), going to “bring the royals closer to Christ the King”? The answer is lame:

I don’t know if the impressive Meghan Markle believes that she is entering a fairytale family. And I do slightly worry that the introduction of Hollywood glamour into the royal family serves only to reinforce the wrong sort of monarchy, the bread-and-circuses version. On the other hand, if she can bring some of her campaigning spirit for the dispossessed into the mix, the monarchy will be all the richer for it. And also be brought much closer to the spirit of that troublesome servant king into whose service she has decided to become baptised.

Well, I hope she infuses the royal family with some idea of service, but it’s not going to make it more Jesus-like. Remember that Princess Diana campaigned against land mines and called attention to the scourge of AIDS, but it didn’t bring the dour Queen and Prince Philip any closer to Jesus.

When a man like Fraser wastes a whole column on a Jesus whose existence is even questionable, and who could have written the whole column without even mentioning Jesus (i.e., make the royals more activist), it makes me doubt his sanity? And when the Guardian publishes it, it makes me doubt their commitment to good journalism, including well written opinion pieces.

h/t: Phil

59 Comments

  1. David Harper
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 10:07 am | Permalink

    My wife, who is an American living in Britain, pointed out that Ms Markle may cause her future husband problems with the IRS and the U.S. Treasury Department. As an ex-pat American, she will be required to report all of her bank accounts in the U.K. to the IRS and Treasury Department if the total amount in them exceeds $10,000 at any time. That includes joint accounts with her husband, which could prove awkward if Harry is using the same tax-avoidance tricks as his grandmother.

    Taking British citizenship won’t help her, as she will still be a U.S. citizen as well, and that’s all the IRS and Treasury Department care about. This could get interesting. Much more interesting than any religious shenanigans.

    • Barney
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:21 am | Permalink

      I had wondered vaguely about that. I hadn’t thought about joint bank accounts. I suspect that will just mean they won’t get a joint bank account while she’s an American.

      She’s said she’s going to apply for British citizenship; the way she put it made it sound as if that would be through the normal process, which takes years, though fasttracking it wouldn’t surprise me. After that, I also imagine she’ll give up the US citizenship to get out of the taxation regime.

    • DrBrydon
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:44 am | Permalink

      Unless she renounces her US citizenship.

      • David Harper
        Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

        An increasing number of ex-pat Americans are doing this, as the foreign account reporting requirement become too onerous. However, the US government has responded by making the renunciation process much harder. It now requires the payment of a hefty fee and attendance at a US embassy to renounce one’s citizenship in person in front of a consular official.

        But you have to wonder about the adverse publicity that Ms Markle would attract if she renounced her US citizenship.

  2. Ken Kukec
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    Christ, you know it ain’t easy
    You know how hard it can be
    The way things are goin’
    They’re gonna crucify me

    Maybe Harry & Meghan can cut their own cover of “The Ballad of John & Yoko.”

  3. Posted December 2, 2017 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    Gag

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

      +1.

      This is one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever seen in a proper newspaper. A combination of space filling and knowing people will click on anything about the happy couple. It’s effing bizarre and truly pathetic.

  4. Christopher
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    What is it about the monarchy that reduces so many to drooling idiots?

    And the identity politics leftists have been shitting themselves over this Markle person supposedly being a “person of colour”. I neither know nor care about her racial or ethnic background, real, or imagined (perhaps I should say “lived”?) and again can’t understand the excitement over such a trivial thing as one rich arsehole marrying a much richer arsehole. The bungling Brexit, republican tax cuts for the uber-rich, Flynn preparing the expose Trump’s treason, Boris Johnson’s constant cock-ups, these are real news items! I’ll not be crawling about in a servile a manner praising these vile bastards.

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

      Harry and Megyn themselves are not such bad people, it’s the circus around them that’s the problem.

      And being wealthy doesn’t make you a bad person, or poor an honourable one. Your average a$$hole is like that no matter how much money they have.

  5. Jeff Morgan
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    Dear PCC

    You are being a bit hard on the old Grauniad. Nearly all its commentators are first class (Polly Toynbee; Aditya Chakrabortty and Jonathan Freedland, to name but three)*, as is the quality of their articles. Even Matthew D’Ancona – a Tory – writes challenging articles.

    Giles Fraser has become more religulous with the passing years. Having said that, he does write some good stuff from time to time. He was demoted within the church because he stood up for the anti-capitalist demonstrators in the City of London and now fronts a south London church as vicar. He deserves credit for that.

    * And Nick Cohen as well….

    • Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:44 am | Permalink

      Well, I suppose all big newspapers will have their deeply irritating writers, but The Guardian seems to specialize in them. Were I the editor I’d rename Fraser’s columns Canon Balls as one can rarely read them without exclaiming the second word.

      Poor Giles, all he wants to do is be a contrarian, but not necessarily to make sense: from saying to Sam Harris that he, Giles, did not have enough faith to be an atheist, to his enthusiastic defense of Moazzem Begg, the AQ supporter, in whom he sees some kindred spirit because they both believe in a God.

      Of course the ur-example of the face-palm Guardian journalist is Owen Jones who can’t think of a virtue without signalling it. I am surprised Owen hasn’t turned up on this website as he is an almost comical template of the authoritarian leftist.

      In his absence, the authentic Nietzschean-Marxist bull-in-a-china-shop somewhat resentful Christianity of our Giles will have to do.

      • somer
        Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:52 am | Permalink

        +1

      • Barney
        Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:57 am | Permalink

        While Owen Jones is well to the left, calling himself a socialist, he’s never struck me as “authoritarian” – he seems a fairly easy-going guy as a personality. Specifically, what are you referring to?

        • bundorgarden
          Posted December 2, 2017 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

          No, look at a few vids from You tube, and you’ll see he is not an easy-going guy as a personality.

          • Barney
            Posted December 2, 2017 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

            Meh – I’ve seen him on TV, and he’s a perfectly normal guy. “Watch this video” is usually a poor idea of showing evidence, without saying which part of it you’re talking about; saying “watch some unnamed videos” was a waste of everyone’s time.

        • Posted December 3, 2017 at 6:35 am | Permalink

          Owen Jones was skewered here by Jamie Palmer of Quillette for throwing LGBT Muslims under the bus. When asked by a member of that group for a shout-out, he viewed it as provocation. For the gay Owen, gay rights lose out to those of Muslims. Here:

          jacobinism.blogspot.co.uk/2015/07/reactionary-radicals.html?m=1

          A vocal propagandist for Chavismo, this is Paulo Canning’s observation on Jones’ 750 days’ silence on the ever-worsening Venezuela situation:

          storify.com/pauloCanning/25-questions-to-owen-jones-about-venezuela

          Owen can’t see an Islamist without suspending his critical faculties. Here is his offer to the al-Qaeda supporter, Suliman Gani, to organize the crowd-funding of Gani to sue Michael Fallon, U.K. Secretary of State for Defence.

          twitter.com/owenjones84/status/728983781722468357

          And here is Owen demonstrating an inability to act like a serious political commentator in his analysis of the Orlando massacre, sulking, Affleck-style, before storming off the set.

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TEgd9q8ugs4

          • Barney
            Posted December 3, 2017 at 7:39 am | Permalink

            1st example: He didn’t throw LGBT Muslims under the bus. A ex-Muslim who is not LGBT tweeted the image; someone else (we don’t know if they’re Muslim or LGBT) asked Jones to “give it a shove”, and the two then wanted to know why Jones didn’t do as they wanted. He said he thought it was produced to provoke rather than win people over. You may not agree, but he’s not the ‘authoritarian’ one here; it’s the other two telling him how he should react.

            2nd: Again, we see some people telling Jones how he should have been talking about Venezuela. He’s not the authoritarian.

            3rd: The British PM and Defence Secretary accused a man of supporting ISIS, to gain a political advantage in the London mayoral election (they criticized the Labour candidate for appearing on a platform with him). It was untrue, and Fallon did have to pay damages. You may think Jones should have ignored this lie which was an attempt to swing an election just because of the man the lie was about, but Jones didn’t think so. That’s not “authoritarian”.

            4th: Yes, in the end, he was petulant. Again, not authoritarian. The male interviewer was being a bit of an arse when trying to say it was an attack.

            So, no, not “authoritarian”. It’s just that there are people who want him to say different things.

            • Barney
              Posted December 3, 2017 at 7:41 am | Permalink

              should read “… an attack on people in general trying to have a fun time” in the last but one paragraph.

            • Posted December 3, 2017 at 9:00 am | Permalink

              On the LGBT Muslim question, Jones finished off the conversation with, “I’m not going to be lectured on LGBT rights by a straight man. Incredible.” That is the definition of authoritarian identity politics. Parenthetically, Jones refused, the day after the Orlando massacre, to appear on a panel with the gay Douglas Murray: Murray is evidently the wrong sort of gay and Jones’ vaunting that only gays can speak on gay issues only goes as far as those gays who happen to agree with him.

              On Venezuela, Jones was being criticized for his support of the authoritarian Chavez régime and its suppression of independent Trades’ Unions. Again, authoritarian. That is not the same as telling him what to think. It’s normal political debate.

              On Suliman Gani, I spent a week researching his support for al-Qaeda, here: strummingstrings1.wordpress.com/2016/05/18/who-is-suliman-gani-and-what-does-he-want/
              The sole thing which Cameron got wrong about Gani was that he was an ISIS man: he wasn’t, he’s an AQ man. Sure, the public conversation went in Gani’s favour but Gani got away with it. By the way, Gani voted Labour in 2017, despite his public protestations that he was not a Labour man. It is also true that Sadiq Khan shared platforms several times with Gani and other Islamists, although I believe Maajid Nawaz, who knew him well, when he avers that SK himself is not an Islamist. Shouting “Islamophobe!” does not alter the facts of the case. Any journalist worth their salt could have found out what I did about Gani beginning from nothing. Jones, the hack, didn’t do his due diligence, because of his automatic activist wish to find racism where it doesn’t exist.

              On Orlando, one suspects that Owen’s petulance was caused by the fact that he was viscerally faced with an Islamist who had just killed 49 fellow gays. Somehow, it did not compute.

              And of course, on the day after the Charlie Hebdo attack Owen wrote the join-the-dots regressive response. This was his first line:
              “Three and a half years ago, the far-right Norwegian terrorist Anders Breivik bombed Oslo, and then gunned down dozens of young people on the island of Utøya.”
              Tangential, you might think, until you realize that it was merely a throat-clearing for Owen to warn us of “rampant” European anti-Muslim bigotry, before launching into a tedious sermon, as if Europeans needed lessons in common decency, on the dangers of being nasty to Muslims because they might join ISIS.

              So, authoritarian? Yes, in his support for and shameful silence over a deteriorating Venezuela. Regressive? Of course. Unable to understand Bertrand Russell’s point about the fallacy of the superior virtue of the oppressed.

              • Barney
                Posted December 3, 2017 at 9:13 am | Permalink

                No, all that just means that you don’t like his politics, and you want to say how he should be a socialist.

                “That is the definition of authoritarian identity politics” is just wrong. It’s not “authoritarian” to say you won’t be told what to do. I’m not sure you even know the definition of “definition”.

      • Geoff Toscano
        Posted December 2, 2017 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

        I rather like Owen Jones, though I can’t escape the fact that he appears to be about twelve!

        I’ll stick with the Guardian as it is the only UK newspaper that is fighting, an albeit rearguard action, against Brexit.

        • Posted December 2, 2017 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

          Indeed. I can understand that s o m e o n e “wouldn’t read” the best newspaper in the world because of one religious columnist I’ve literally never noticed or heard of, though I’ve read the paper every damn day for years and years.

          Why this confession should be published on the pages of Why Evolution Is True, is beyond me.

          • somer
            Posted December 2, 2017 at 8:30 pm | Permalink

            It might say some compassionate things about the poor in Britain sometimes but its great love these days is identity politics. And its great if you love Russia Today, Iran’s Press TV, and Bashar Al-Assad

      • Jeff Morgan
        Posted December 3, 2017 at 11:33 am | Permalink

        like this!

  6. Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    The monarchy is the U.K. equivalent to the Second Amendment.

    It’s the core of our foundation myth. It’s what supposedly keeps the barbarians from the gates. You won’t get a sensible debate about it in the press.

    • David Harper
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:23 am | Permalink

      The U.K. Parliament is another part of the Establishment that is way too full of itself. They love their ceremonies and rituals, many of which are frankly an embarrassment in the 21st century. The Palace of Westminster, where Parliament sits, is falling apart. The people who have to maintain it live in constant fear of a catastrophic fire, or an escape of asbestos, or the Victorian-era sewers failing. It’s been suggested that Parliament should relocate outside London whilst the entire Palace of Westminster is re-furbished, but that drew howls of protest. It’s apparently unthinkable that Britain’s lawmakers could do their job just as effectively outside London.

      Read and laugh/weep:

      https://www.theguardian.com/news/2017/dec/01/a-tale-of-decay-the-houses-of-parliament-are-falling-down

      • Posted December 2, 2017 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

        When I see live broadcasts from the House of Parliament, I’m always wondering how close the MPs sit next to each other on the benches. There is not a minimum of personal distance. I can not imagine any of the MPs could like that situation.

        • David Harper
          Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

          There’s a trick called “doughnutting” which is used in the Commons when a government minister is speaking to a largely empty chamber. Fellow MPs from the minister’s party will crowd around him/her to give the impression to the TV cameras that the minister is being supported by large numbers of colleagues.

          Having said that, the Commons chamber is far too small to accommodate all of the sitting MPs. When an important debate takes place, you will see MPs standing in the aisles and at the entrance to the chamber, because all the seats are taken.

          • Posted December 3, 2017 at 7:50 am | Permalink

            ” When an important debate takes place, you will see MPs standing in the aisles and at the entrance to the chamber, because all the seats are taken.”

            Yes, that’s exactly what I saw a few days ago, people were standing at the entrance and I wondered who those people were. I suspected that it would be journalists or assistants – but I never thought it could be MPs! Gosh the English are tough! For their traditions, they are ready to sacrifice personal comforts. The Germans could take an example of that. The members of parliament in the Reichstag even have their own desks in the first rows and everyone is allowed to sit on ergonomically shaped armchairs. Only I have doubts that all this luxury would have ever helped in thinking and deciding …
            One should introduce wooden benches again, maybe they remind them more of the really hardships and problems of life outside of their bubble.

  7. Barney
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    In the article, Fraser tries to excuse the (Catholic) “Christ the King” celebrations (“King of the Universe”!) as not being “reactionary”, despite being a reaction to communism and fascism, because “No King but Jesus” was a slogan of the Fifth Monarchists in the English Civil War.

    Leaving aside the nonsense of claiming that 20th century popes took their lead from 17th century English puritans, I thought I’d look them up.

    It turns out they were theocratic numerologists, waiting for the Second Coming of Jesus in 1666, based on the Old Testament book of Daniel (shame he ends the column yearning for less Old Testament and more New). So Fraser might be right to say the doctrine is “far from reactionary”; yes, it’s insane ,and it failed over 350 years ago.

  8. JonLynnHarvey
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    “Loose canon” is a pun I’ve been using for years, usually when taking a class on Gnosticism, whether at a Unitarian church, or at a seminary.
    With me, of course, it refers to a canon of Biblical texts which may be fixed (Catholic and Protestant) or a bit open-ended (Greek Orthodoxy) or utterly fluid (Gnosticism).

    However, here it refers to a clergy affiliated with either a cathedral or a type of independent (“collegiate”) church.

    I suppose if church rules are enforced only loosely that would also be be a “loose canon”, canon meaning a rule of ecclesiastical law.

    But I don’t object to anyone drawing lessons of secular morality from the J-guy, though yes, the tone of the piece is rather mawkish and sappy as such exhortations often are.

  9. Stonyground
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:41 am | Permalink

    My thought is that our Royal Family has been about bread and circuses for decades now.

    Regarding the doubting of Giles’ sanity, he has suffered mental health problems so I think that it would be a little inappropriate to make an issue out of that aspect of his writings.

    BBC Radio 4 has a daily current affairs program called Today. The serious issues of the day are interrupted for three minutes each day at 07:50 for a mini sermon known as ‘Though for the Day’. Lots of religions are represented, no atheists allowed, and Giles has been a regular contributor there. The BBC allow no right to reply on this spot but fortunately there exists a blog that allows listeners to vent about the tripe that is generally expressed each morning.

    http://www.platitudes.org.uk/platblog/index.php

    It is possible to search the site if you need to find any of Giles’ past contributions and the comments that were provoked. There was a time when Giles appeared to be on the verge of becoming an atheist, his god having become attenuated almost into nonexistence. Unfortunately he seems to have pulled himself back from the brink and his current confused wibblings would appear to be the result.

    • Posted December 2, 2017 at 1:57 pm | Permalink

      Sub the first sentence. The British monarchy hasn’t had power in centuries. Parliament may be viewed as equally ridiculous by some but,
      whatever power there is resides with them. The monarchy are pets retained for display, pomp and circumstance.

      • Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

        If only that were true. The Prince of Wales frequently writes to cabinet ministers. The Guardian newspaper has been waging a campaign for a number of years to have the letters put into the public domain so that everyone can see how the prince if trying to influence government policy. The prince and the government have strongly resisted this.

        Those same ministers are also very careful not to do anything that might inconvenience the Queen or the Prince of Wales in respect of their considerable estates in the Duchy of Lancaster and Duchy of Cornwall respectively.

        The monarchy isn’t quite as toothless as you might imagine.

        • Posted December 4, 2017 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

          Thanks for the clarification. I need to study
          more modern English history and government instead of depending on long-ago courses and reading.

          I knew that the Prince of Wales sent letters to Parliament. I didn’t know that they were not available to the public. The reports I read were in newspapers and/or magazines so
          I didn’t realize the situation.

          The monarchy’s massive ownership of properties I hadn’t thought about. But, didn’t we recently learn that a lot of the monetary wealth of the monarchy is stashed out of the country? No different than the other oligarchs and multi-millionaires who want to pay less taxes than the hoi polloi must.

  10. DrBrydon
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:50 am | Permalink

    Well, I wasn’t around for the last coronation. Coincidentally, though, I was watching the Jubilee on YouTube the other day. The sermon by Rowan Williams was all about the Queen’s duty and service to god. I’m going to assume that the coronation was as well. Granted the royals haven’t given all their wealth away, and aren’t washing the feet of the poor, they seem pretty engaged. My god, though, are CofE vicars busybodies.

    • somer
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 11:57 am | Permalink

      The CofE seems to me just thoroughly mixed up. There was an article somewhere about some fairly senior CofE clerics fervently praying that Kate (Middleton) and Williams little son might grow up gay to bolster the status of gays in the realm.

  11. nicky
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

    When I read: “His coronation was on a cross, wiping spit from his face. His crown was made up of thorns, digging into his head. The moment in which he becomes king looks to all the world like an abdication etc. etc.” I somehow cannot escape the impression he’s under the spell of his own words, he might even not believe, but it flows so nicely and is somehow emotionally satisfying.
    I can even imagine writing like that (if I had the skill) with satisfaction, even if I would not believe a single word of it.
    Oooh, the spit in his face and the thorns digging into the flesh, it has a nearly erotic smell.

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

      “Oooh, the spit in his face and the thorns digging into the flesh, it has a nearly erotic smell.”

      That’s right. There is so much “repressed” sadomasochism in Roman Catholicism that it’s positively obscene; and I use “obscene” both facetiously and in all seriousness. What are the Stations of the Cross but an ambulatory sadomasochistic meditation — one is supposed to “feel the pain” as one goes from station to station. But there’s much more — anorectic mystics fantasizing about drinking the blood straight out of Jesus’s wounds, and so forth. Gag me with a spoon.

      • nicky
        Posted December 3, 2017 at 8:26 am | Permalink

        “anorectic mystics fantasizing about drinking the blood straight out of Jesus’s wounds, and so forth.” Isn’t that brilliant? I really ‘dig’ that!

  12. phoffman56
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

    Well, “..wiping spit from his face..” has rather low probability, since
    firstly with maybe 70% probability, neither he, nor any reasonable facsimile, ever did exist;
    secondly, if he did, with 80% probability he wasn’t crucified; and finally,
    barring the above two, I doubt his tongue or penis were long enough, or in enough muscular control, to do the job, since the other four appendages were nailed down.

    Unrelated, but in my humble opinion (ha!), Meghan should have told Harry:

    ‘Yes, but only if you’ll come and live in Canada with me—who wants to live in Lower Brexitania, the only western country that comes close to my native country in approximating Pakistan’s governmental idiocy and extreme wealth distribution.’

    But apparently she’s just left her Toronto apartment, for one of the above two, both of which I must admit to have lived in for non-trivial periods myself. But that was before such a large percentage of both their populaces was converted into sub-human intelligence by Rupert Murdoch.

    • Steve Pollard
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

      What a rude person you are. I have lived in the UK for an extremely non-trivial part of my life – ie all of it – and your insulting and uneducated comments are completely without merit.

      Where do you live, then? How does your Government’s idiocy and your country’s wealth distribution – not to mention Murdoch’s influence – compare with mine?

    • Craw
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

      What a ridiculous comment. The one fairly certain thing is that IF Jesus who was crucified existed at all THEN he was crucified. I trust most readers can follow the logic even if you cannot.

    • phoffman56
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

      Having clearly raised some patriotic and perhaps christen hackles, here is a reply to both, without beginning a bunch of indentations:

      As for Crew, if you define the existence of JC to partly require that object be a Roman crucified person, of course you are correct. Such definitions are vague. E.g. any preacher living and dying within a few decades of the traditional dates, living within a short distance of Jerusalem, and who may have said just about anything, is maybe the weakest definition of an object J.C. Then my first number, probability of existence, is way high, likely should be 0%, and my second, probability of crucifixion, likely too low. Or do you have some even slightly credible historic record of a suitable crucifixion? Maybe my memory is weak and you can correct it.

      As for Steve, sorry if mentioning the extraordinarily dreadful wealth distribution in U.K. and U.S.A. is considered by you to be rude. It is a simple matter of factual information. Can you name with suitable reference a western country where it is close to being worse? A broken record, but maybe my memory is weak and you can correct it. Is there any other country where Murdoch’s lowering of public discourse is even close to as bad as the effects of his several pieces of gutter press in U.K. and of his Faux News in U.S.?

      • nicky
        Posted December 3, 2017 at 8:19 am | Permalink

        Well, if South Africa is considered a ‘western’ country, and in many regards it is, is worse as far as wealth distribution goes.

  13. Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    “And also be brought much closer to the spirit of that troublesome servant king into whose service she has decided to become baptised.”

    I guess Meghan Markle’s Catholicism (and probable baptism) does not qualify her as a Christian in the eyes of this CoE clown and shill.

    And, on the issue of race, it has been reported widely that Queen Charlotte, wife of George III, purportedly had black ancestry. So, Meghan may not to be first there. Truth be known, there probably have been a lot more non-pure white royals.

  14. gravelinspector-Aidan
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

    His coronation was on a cross, wiping spit from his face

    [Making notes in the extremely unlikely event that I find myself near Slough on the day. Whenever it’ll be. And without a wing or several of friendly Luftwaffe bombers to hand.]

  15. Craw
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:57 pm | Permalink

    They don’t want to pander to Christianity, but once you decide to bow and scrape to Islam you’re cornered.

  16. Jonathan Dore
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    Giles Fraser is an increasingly ridiculous self-publicist.

  17. William Bill Fish
    Posted December 2, 2017 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

    Get it right Ms Marcle is a Canadian born in Montreal. She works in America as an actress, as many Canadians do.

    My Mother was a religious monarchy believer. God wanted kings to rule us. She had books on the royals, of Charles wedding etc. When Fergie got into the news she couldn’t get rid of the books fast enough.

    • Barney
      Posted December 2, 2017 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

      Obviously not – she was born in Los Angeles. All you have to google to find that out is “Markle born”. That gives you this:

      https://www.biography.com/people/meghan-markle-013117

      or Wikipedia, news articles etc. Which also tell you she’s been working in Toronto.

      Why tell someone to “get it right” with such a clearly wrong claim?

  18. Jonathan Wallace
    Posted December 3, 2017 at 5:27 am | Permalink

    It is not correct that there is a legal obligation on Ms Markle to convert to CofE, though it would have been necessary only a few years ago. Here is the relevant paragraph from the Succession to the Crown Act 2013:

    “Removal of disqualification arising from marriage to a Roman Catholic

    (1)A person is not disqualified from succeeding to the Crown or from possessing it as a result of marrying a person of the Roman Catholic faith.

    (2)Subsection (1) applies in relation to marriages occurring before the time of the coming into force of this section where the person concerned is alive at that time (as well as in relation to marriages occurring after that time).”

    Having said that I agree that Giles Fraser’s article is typical of the rubbish he generally serves up.

    As to the Guardian, I think it is easily the best newspaper in the UK (not that the competition is anything to admire). I like the fact that its opinion pieces are not uniformly of one view and do not object to the publication of articles I disagree with as part of this mixture. The Independent used to be better at this with a range of columnists that included writers from both left and right of centre.

  19. Mike
    Posted December 3, 2017 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    I uesed to think the Guardian was a beacon of light among the darkness of the rt wing Rags our msm consists of, sadly that is no longer the case,as now it leans more to the right than it used to lean to the left,so i no longer read it.

    • Posted December 3, 2017 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      It does still have the virtue, unique among the national newspapers in the U.K., that it is not owned by a billionaire (or pair of billionaires, in the case of the Torygraph), to whose tune it must dance.

      The Grauniad (and its Sunday edition, the Observer) is still owned by the Scott Trust, which protects the editorial independence of the paper.

  20. Richard
    Posted December 3, 2017 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    The dour Queen?

    I say, steady on a bit there, Jerry old chap, I know you are only a brash colonial, but I think you have Gone A Bit Too Far there. The Queen is well-known for having a wicked sense of humour.

    Off With His Head!

    • gormenghastly
      Posted December 4, 2017 at 1:29 am | Permalink

      I agree. Queen Victoria was not amused, Queen Elizabeth has often been amused, and often even been amusing. She’s not dour, she’s just got Very Old.


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