Gen X at 40

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Hans -

I suspect its the tabloids who don't want to get into the habit of paying for photos of the royals but yes its offensive for the royals to make money from public appearances. Of course, the tawdry fascination with the royals is offensive as is the whole institution of monarchy.

Chris Taylor -

The institution of monarchy is a pretty good reminder that modern civilisation is a pretty thin veneer on our essentially primitive and unchanged human nature.

Back in the olden days power derived from the old "might makes right" formula, i.e. who had the most skill with a club and was prepared to use it. Without widespread agreement on our social contract, it would not be difficult for modern society to wind up right back at square one again. See Mogadishu, 1991-present, or Lebanon, 1975-1990.

Feudal seigneury actually has its roots in non-monarchical Roman times, when the Empire's population was in serious decline. The Senate decreed that sons were obliged to succeed to their fathers occupations, and colonists were forbidden to move from the towns where they had settled.

The stability of several centuries of manorialism gave us an entire body of laws, a large period of sustained urbanisation in both northern and southern Europe, the scholarship and philosophy of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment... in short the very bedrock of today's Western civilisation.

So I don't find it too offensive to laud the descendants of ancient club-wielders today. Without their ancestors' original feudal impetus, and not coindentally their willingness to peacefully set aside increasingly large chunks of royal prerogative, we would not today enjoy the same fruits of centuries of human labour. The journey here would have been much, much bloodier and hard-won than it already has been.

Matthew Fletcher -

Captcha: "Government Suits" I Couldn't pass that one up.

And for a veneer of relevance:

God save the Queen.

Jay Currie -

"100-page spread"

Yoiks, I mean she's cute but not that cute.

He's barely Royal at all and if Hello wants to drop a million on the wedding pics good for them both.

The Liz, Chuck, Wills line should not do it simply because they have the various bits of income real Royals have; the bit players on the other hand should take the pickings of whatever side jobs they can get.

I can hardly wait for Fergie's girls Maxim debut.

Hans -

Chris: When will people laud me for my ancestors role in all of that? The way my gransdpappy tells, our people put the serf in serfdom. Without them, the royals would have had nobody to lord things over. Pretty siginificant.

Chris Taylor -

You have Labour Day, dontcha? =)

Not to mention every day free of the pillory, arbitrary arrest and trial, and so on. When was the last time the landlord put you in hock for failing to grow your quota of beetroot?

Alan -

Remember, Chris, Hans is in PEI. The quota thing finished in the early 90s there.