Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Sachsen-Coburg und Gotha and I don’t have any personal beef. We’ve never met one another, and we aren’t that likely to come across one another either. As far as British hereditary monarchs go she hasn’t been all that bad. This isn’t at all to imply that she has been good. They are all rather disgusting, but it’s a matter of degrees. While she oversaw the brutalising treatment of Ireland by her government, the total destruction of industry and organised labour in the north of England, Scotland, and Wales, and the rape and pillage of Iraq and Afghanistan by her armed forces, she didn’t – as her grandfather and father did – perpetrate genocide and mass murder on a global scale.
As things go then, she has been alright; she has been sufferable because we’ve been able to ignore her. It’s the things that we haven’t been able to ignore that have been the real problem, the things the fictional claims of monarchy represent – the class divisions, the privilege and titles, the grotesque inequality. Poverty of the most deplorable kind is a reality right under her nose, and her governments have ensured that the tide of magnificent privilege has widened the gap between the poorest and the richest; taking what little the destitute have to engorge the bank accounts of the fawning and servile élite.
Watching this woman turn ninety, and watching crowds of stupid little Englanders singing Happy Birthday to her as she lights beacons, makes me wonder if I hate her. Actually, no I don’t hate her. She’s a human being, and no doubt she has had her troubles. It’s more the case that I couldn’t care less about her. Besides, she doesn’t need me to care about her. She’ll be just fine with all the tax money she benefits from and all the pathetic pigs who gather around her trough. What I hate, what I truly loathe, revile, and despise is everything her crown stands for.
On Mrs. Windsor’s ninetieth birthday what this stands for, to me, is all the people who never made it to ninety, and those who’ll never make it to ninety as a result of the lack of a fuck her government has given for them. People, who have gotten up every morning of their lives to keep skin and bone together, feed and clothe their children, and pay their taxes; ordinary, salt of the earth, men and women whose futures have been stolen from them to keep old women like Elizabeth Windsor in unimaginable comfort. Not to mention the unemployed, the elderly, the disabled, the sick. Now that she’s ninety there seems no real need to wish her a long life. She’s had a longer one than most.