British newspaper barred from revealing details of Prince Charles's political meddling

Britain’s constitutional monarchy, as popularly imagined, requires that its hereditary royals not meddle in government. The truth is not only that Prince Charles makes secretive efforts to influence policy, but that the details of it–in the form of 28 “particularly frank” letters to politicans–cannot be published by the press after a politician vetoed a court… READ THE REST

[The “cannot be published by the press” link is slightly malformed.]

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Rob, I’m afraid you’re misstating the constitutional role of the British monarchy. There is certainly no prohibition on the monarch from influencing policy / commenting on things - it is for exactly this reason that the Queen has weekly meetings with the Prime Minister. The monarch’s role in this regard is often summarised as “the right to be consulted, the right to encourage, the right to warn”. They just don’t get to decide any more. Seems to me that’s what Prince Charles is doing. You might not like the system, but a poll by that monarchist bastion the Guardian showed that most people in Britain do.


“as popularly imagined”

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As popularly imagined by who? The Queen’s meetings with Prime Ministers aren’t really a secret…


We’ll probably only get a decent debate on abolishing the monarchy going when we’ve got his face on the coins.

What does the Prince have to say about all of this? Most of the things mentioned are things he has openly talked about before.

It explicitely says the Government, not the Prince is the one fighting releasing the letters.

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They had a pretty good debate in 1660, if I recall.

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I can’t believe that there’s anything more absurd in those letters that what is already publicly known about the man and his thoughts. He’s a half-witted inbred who makes Fergie look bright. There’s no way my opinion of him could possibly get any lower. The man is an utter buffoon.

That said, if the argument is that we can’t be allowed to see his letters because it might “undermine the perception of his political neutrality”, then I’m just going to take it as read that they demonstrate that he isn’t politically neutral (which is quite obvious already to anyone with even half a brain).

If he wants political influence, he and the rest of his parasite family can give back all the land they’ve stolen from the country, he can go get a proper job and influence politicians the way the rest of us plebs do by voting once in a while (and he can see where that gets him).

If he wants to keep his fancy palaces and all the free cash he gets he needs to keep his (idiotic) opinions to himself and concentrate on opening supermarkets. If he can’t do that he should go the way of Charlie I.

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I’d bet you $20 that his capacity for absurdity exceeds your capacity for credulity…


Is he just an ordinary citizen, constitutionally?
If an ordinary British citizen were to write to government ministers, should the Guardian be able to force publication? What if they “seek to alter government policies”? (I can’t think of any other reason to write to the government tbh.)

Or is he someone in preparation to be monarch?
If so, shouldn’t he prepare for the monarch’s constitutional rights to encourage and to warn, and confidentially?


Constitutionally or not (Britain doesn’t actually have a written constitution, just a mishmash of the Magna Carta and subsequent stuff), he is not an ordinary citizen. He has immense influence and access to the highest levels across all spectrums. He is extraordinary. And Britain doesn’t have citizens, it has subjects. I doubt he really is one.

Doesn’t the monarch alone have the right to encourage etc? If we extend that to “Kings in waiting”, why shouldn’t Harry and William have it too? Why not Andrew and Edward? And let’s not be sexist. Chicks should have it too. No reason Fergie shouldn’t. In fact, the executors of Diana’s estate should have it - her brother even.

Where do you stop?

Influence is one thing. Talking is another. But when people do what you ask or tell them to do, that’s an injection of unelected nation-level influence that is unwarranted and undemocratic.

Personally, I like my representatives to be transparent, obvious, accessible, accountable, and obedient to me and my vote. Holed up in Sandringham hunting fish in a kilt - as nice and charming as he may be - I don’t see what place he has in political affairs. Nor HRH, for that matter, but I cede to tradition and bow appropriately.

Read “Who Runs This Place Anyway” or some such. When the weather that impacts your life is shaped by forces beyond your ken, you get a queasy feeling.

Maybe a bit like this: The Freemasons Central Habitat in London held an entrepreneur event over the last few days. It was sponsored by John Lewis. I had no idea there was that connection. Why would they do that? They could have held it anywhere. Lots of police were there - lots - for not many good reasons. Overall, I don’t know if the Freemasons are good or bad for me, but because I can’t tell, I don’t trust them, nor particularly anyone who associates with them.

If I can’t see inside something, then something odd might be happening inside.

I fucking don’t. Mind you, I’m not that fond of the government either.

Not true. Hasn’t been true since the British Nationality Act of 1981.


Agh you’ve ruined one of my conversation pieces! I was blissfully ignorant, now I shall be ignorant. No more parties for me.

Just wanted to clarify since I couldn’t find anything with exactly that title: is this the book you’re referring to?

Yep, that’s the one! Make sure it’s the latest edition. It’s the beginnings of an eye-opener.

Knights, Admirals, aristocrats, FTSE 100 roundabouts, it’s all in there!

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