Saturday, 31 July 2010


Oscar Wilde insisted that nature mirrored art. What he didn't say was the art was created by Gilbert and Sullivan.

Our Queen "opens" Her parliament over which she has no control, wearing a glass hat, an evening gown, though it is midday, dripping with real jewels so vulgar they look like costume gems. She arrives in a horse and cart guarded by men on horses carrying swords and other men in fancy dress wearing tea cosies. She shows her authority by reading a speech written by her audience, some of whom are wearing sexy silk stockings held up by suspender belts and girdles, which they borrow from their wives or shop for surreptitiuosly.

I was struck by this image watching the most nauseating moment of my year. What a patter song could have been rendered by the "warlike" Prince Edward, a failed Lloyd Webber tea boy who bottled out of the Royal Marines, wearing a colonel's uniform, dripping with unearned medals, boasting about his brief visit to the frontline in Afghanistan. With the rousing chorus "It enables me to look fighting soldiers in the eye,"

He was bragging to the unctuous Alan Titchmarsh who is tailor-made for sycophantic duets. It reminded me of George IV talking about his bravery at Waterloo, where he did not serve, and being answered by the Duke of Wellington: "So your majesty has always said."

An odd lot our Royals. Dark characters who might have dripped from the pens of the authors of The Sorcerer:
George I, who murdered his wife's lover, was said to have baked him in an oven. George II promised his wife on her deathbed he would not marry again - only take mistresses. He had two said to be the ugliest women in Germany. He was so afraid of assassination he ruled from Germany and only ventured to England after dark. Georges III and IV and William IV were all bigamists. During the French Revolution, the Prince Regent and at least one of his brothers engaged to look after the fortunes of French aristos but when those few who escaped to England asked for the money they denied taking it.
Queen Victoria took the thousands raised for a hospital to commemorate her jubilee and spent it on gems. During her first years on the throne she was terrified her uncle Cumberland, King of the Rhine, would murder her. George V abandoned his cousin the Czar to the Bolsheviks but it did not stop Queen Mary, a kleptomaniac, from buying the Czarina's jewels at a bargain price. In World War 2, Edward VIII deserted his post and fled to Biarritz when France fell. Ever after, his C.O., Major General Howard Wyse, refused to allow his name to be mentioned. As Duke of Windsor, he arranged with the Nazis that he would return as puppet king.
The Queen Mother is said to be the daughter of a Welsh serving girl, seduced by the Earl of Strathmore (the family were known for making love to servants - his son married one who later killed herself). Our Queen sacked her trainer and kicked him out of his house when he caught a crippling disease which affected his ability to train all the Queen's horses.

There has been an outbreak of commonsense, it must be said, in the Houses of Parliament, which we have already been told by G & S includes members who are half fairies.

How they chorused their horror when Mr Cameron said what everyone knows. Gaza is a prison camp, the result of the infantile policies of both Israel and Palestine, though most of the ordinary people there want a peaceful settlement. He was right, too, in claiming that Pakistan, that unneccesary country created by tired old men who were no longer thinking straight, should not look both ways at the Taliban.

In America, President Obama has wisely agreed that his country, which owes trillions of dollars to the Mikado, should spend no more borrowed money for the next two years on Climate Change chimera.

At this point we move to the art of Disney. Our head of environment secretary Chris Huhne has a surname that sounds like a Winnie the Pooh soundbite. Fitting for one of nature's Pooh-Bahs. He inherited from Labour a £100 billion scheme to erect two monster turbines every day for the next ten years. Alas, it is hardly value for money. This vast concrete forest will supply less than a tenth of our needs.

Huhne wants to plant 6,000 wind turbines in the sea and thousands more to pollute the countryside. Alas, those feet that in ancient times walked upon England's pastures green will scarcely find room to place the feet in the future.Just a thought but has anyone measured the giant carbon footprints that are grinding the face of our planet in consequence of the recurring wars which governments undertake for frivolous reasons

And to what purpose are we to suffer this defacement of England's pleasant land?

Huhne claims the 3,000 wind turbines we have already built have the 'capacity' to generate 4.5 gigawatts of electricity. Alas, wind blows only intermittently. The actual production is barely a quarter of that, roughly the equivalent of one power station. That will be two per cent of the electricity we need and be twice as expensive as a power station. Offshore turbines are three times as costly.

Sixty cinemas around the country will pioneer book tours by satellite in a link to the Royal Festival Hall where Stephen Fry will read from his autobiography, The Fry Chronicles. Audiences will submit questions via Twitter, which has made Fry one of the most avidly followed celebrities in the world. Can there be anything more damning?

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