We Pay For This

I am not sure which subject in the newspapers is more repetitively irritating at the moment, the election or Prince Andrew, the Duke of Pork.

Commentators seem to have succumbed to mass hysteria on both subjects and they aren’t helped by some of the better known Twonks in British society who keep chipping in with what can only be described as inanities.

Last week, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby said we should leave the Royals alone, when trying to defend the Royal Biscuit and his Yank against ‘unrealistically high demands’ in terms of their personal conduct from the media.

It was, he said, ‘absurd and completely unjust’ to hold them to higher moral standards than the rest of us. ‘The Royal Family are not superhuman. They are a very remarkable group of people, all of them. But you can’t lay that kind of extra burden on people.’

Why not damnit? We pay for their privileged lifestyle. How can this overly elevated Churchman assert that the Royal Family are ‘all very remarkable people.’ Queenie probably is as she has remained unswervingly faithful to her broadcast vow, made on her 21st birthday, in 1947: ‘I declare before you all that my whole life, whether it be long or short, shall be devoted to your service.’

Thankfully for us all, that life has been a very long one. But her eldest son and heir, while he also seems to have a profound sense of public service, is another casualty of the sycophancy which is so startling in what is supposed to be a much less deferential society than it was.

Someone who worked for Prince Charles for many years described him as ‘appallingly selfish.’ I don’t suppose he ever dared say that to Charlie’s face though. And I don’t suppose he would have paid the slightest attention. For all his green credentials, the silver spoon shows through all too readily.

In his memoirs, Sir Max Hastings recounted a lunch in the mid-1990s at which he (then the editor of the Daily Telegraph) told Prince Charles that his demand for greater public sympathy was not becoming in someone of his privileges: ‘His fist banged on the table, rattling the silver: “Nobody but me can possibly understand how perfectly bloody it is to be the Prince of Wales!”’

That was the last time the two spoke. Those who criticise the Prince to his face are forever excluded. I had a colleague who was part of the Royal Protection squad surrounding Charlie and he told me that ‘he (the prince) is a hell of a nice guy but if you don’t obey his every whim, you will be thrown out forthwith.’

My friend has since moved to America, probably to get away from the pomp and hypocrisy surrounding the Royals. Over there, the criterion seems to be how much money you have rather than what family you were born into.

Nicholas Whitchell, the current BBC Royal Correspondent (he gave up an exciting job as a war correspondent for this one so it must pay well) commented the other day that suddenly there seems to be a complete lack of organisation in Buckingham Palace and it is leading to PR disaster after PR disaster.

He said: “There is now a lack of strong central control. We have had two episodes within just a couple of months of senior members of the royal family doing it their own way.

‘We had Prince Harry with his rant against the tabloid media which was absolutely against the advice of his communications officials who were in despair over it. We have a similar situation now. The mainstream advisors of the Queen at the Palace were not a part of this Prince Andrew debate.”

I think he should have said Prince Andrew debacle rather than debate. For the last three days, the tabloids have been full to bursting of photographs showing that this overweight prince lied through his teeth throughout the offending interview.

Personally I am fed up with it. I don’t want to comment on the farcical election that is going on at the moment, but I really don’t want to write anything more about the Duke of Pork or the Royal biscuit and his Yank.

They are just ordinary and somewhat stupid people damnit! The tragedy is that we as tax payers are paying for them.

I was truly horrified to read a couple of days ago that a former model turned jihadi who was jailed for helping the 21/7 Tube bombers was granted £1.4 million in legal aid during her battle to evade justice.

Yes that was indeed one point four million pounds! Again, it is tax payers’ money.

Mulu Girma then received thousands more for her human rights fight to remain in the UK instead of facing deportation to her homeland Ethiopia. The victims of the attack received a fraction of than that in compensation. Where oh where has justice gone in this country?

Girma was sentenced to ten years in prison for helping her brother in law Hussein Osman, just weeks after fifty-two people were killed on the London tube trains and buses on July 7, 2005. The callous former model helped him hide and dressed his wounds following his failed bid to kill commuters and then assisted in his attempt to flee the country. And then we, the poor bloody taxpayers fork out to help her. Does that make any sense at all even in this benighted twenty-first century?

Freedom of information figures reveal that she received £1,435,090 in legal aid for her crown court trial in 2008. They also show that Girma benefited from £30,162 in legal aid between 2009 and 2013 and is believed to have won her battle to remain in the UK, despite her horrific actions. 

To add to the ridiculousness of the situation, Girma was then recruited by the south London local authority as a trainee customer services assistant in 2013, shortly after she was released early from a 10-year jail term.

I know I am an old toppie and very old fashioned but there are times that I despair of modern society and feel reluctant to read the newspapers at all. But then I would have nothing to rant about so to hell with my escalating blood pressure – I will keep going.

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