Queen Elizabeth's Parliament ...
This coming Tuesday, 17th May, sees the Queen's annual 'parliamentary' speech -- wherein she announces 'her' government's plans for 'our' future.
However, it's important to understand, the possessive use of "her" is extremely misleading in this context. In reality, it's her government only in the same way it's my government, or yours. It's the political party in power that holds all actual 'power'. It is their government deciding, implementing and enforcing. As a 'figurehead,' the Queen is probably no more informed than her subjects are - before she receives her script.
Consider the reasonably recent revelations of Paul Burell, the late Princess Diana's butler. When, in the aftermath of her untimely death, he requested [by proxy] and was granted, a private audience with the Queen.
"Paul," he claims she said. "There are forces at work in this country, of which 'we' know nothing." Pointedly, this particular Burell claim was never denied. Nor has it ever been. Neither by the Queen herself, nor by the much wider officialdom of 'The Palace'.
All State occasions, like the upcoming opening of parliament, are presided over by the reigning monarch in a purely traditional and ceremonial way. Great wealth & privilege, and pomp & ceremony ... yes. Influence & respect ... maybe. But true, legal power ... no; our monarch has none. Indeed, since the mid seventeeth century and the English civil war[s] and ensuing revolution, neither has any other British monarch. Oliver Cromwell saw to that.
( ** Incidentally, it never ceases to amaze This old Brit, exactly how overlooked, or forgotten, or even unknown -- the English revolution, still is. Almost every Briton knows, to a varying degree, at least something of the American, French and Russian revolutions -- yet, little of their own. ** )
Today, Blair's third New-Labour government's latest plans make extremely interesting reading. What the current monarch thinks of the plans she is set to announce, isn't known. She'll merely do her duty. She'll simply read aloud, in public, a speech prepared by the politicians. What others think, remains to be seen.
The link below offers a taste of what's set to come to this country. A good insight too, into the intended further Americanization of this Britain; this green and pleasant land; this sceptered isle; this Blair's-Britain.
So much for Blair's brand of socialism.
Radical changes? This old Brit certainly thinks so. Desirable and/or acceptable changes? Judge for yourself.
Click for a preview and analysis of the Queen's forthcoming speech. And, God save us all. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/4539675.stm