Thursday, March 10, 2011

Ugliness Unleashed


“For every monarchy overthrown the sky becomes less brilliant, because it loses a star. A republic is ugliness set free.”
Anatole France, first winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, 1921.

There are many things about democracy and so-called “representative government” that bother me. One of the many is their sheer hatred for true beauty and their worship of ugliness. Now, anyone who believes in the democratic principle will immediately ask me, “What the heck are you talking about?” And I suppose I owe that an answer. Again, there are many examples I could name, but here I am specifically thinking about flags.

Living in the States, I am constantly bombarded with American patriotism, and one of those things is a love for the “Stars and Stripes.” You would not believe how often I have heard expressions such as, “Isn’t that the most beautiful flag you’ve ever seen?” And of course there’s the bumper sticker that reads, “These colors don’t run.” And I am forced to ask, just what is so beautiful about it? Thirteen stripes alternating in red and white, a blue field taking up less than a quarter of it, with fifty little white stars in it. Big whoop. My six year-old cousin could draw a better picture than that! When I look at that thing, I honestly wonder how my neighbours can look at that and have pride swell up in their hearts. Of course they would argue, “Well, it’s the things it stands for! Freedom! It stands for freedom!” Uh huh. And what is freedom, exactly? Well, any proponent of democracy will tell you freedom is having a say in your government. Guess what? That was the claim that Cromwell and his thugs made when they waged war on King Charles I, and what did England get when Cromwell won? The greatest tyranny in her history, worse than any king she had ever known. Coincidence? I think not. That was the battle cry of the rebels in the thirteen colonies that would later come to call themselves “The United States of America.” It seems to Americans the idea of representation is the only thing that matters. Americans today are taxed far more heavily and far more forcibly than their colonial ancestors. “But at least we have representation!” You know what? You keep your representation, and let me keep my money. Deal? The French Revolution had a similar battle cry about public representation as well, and from said Revolution we got the Reign of Terror and the Vendee Massacre, considered by many historians to be the first instance of modern genocide. Is it any wonder the lament went up to heaven, “O Liberty, what horrors are committed in thy name!”

King Charles I of England, that monarch supposedly so horrible and even treasonous (if it is even possible for a king to be a traitor), had a very different definition of freedom. He insisted that the liberty of the subject lies not in participation in government (a thing which never has been, nor ever ought to be a right of the subject in his hallowed opinion), but rather in this: that each man’s life and property be his own. Now, I don’t know about you, but I like that definition of freedom better. Let me have my life and my goods, and I’ll be happy. But the Federal Government gets a nice chunk of my income before I ever even see it, and don’t get me started on Imminent Domain. In short, freedom is rather lacking in this country, so the claim that the beauty of the American flag is that is stands for freedom is effectively nill. Without that claim for its beauty, what else remains? It’s a kindergarten-level drawing is what it is.

Compare that with the standards of the royal families of Europe. The Stuarts, the Habsburgs, the Bourbons, these were families with beautiful banners. Not some silly tri-colour with arbitrary colours declaring, “we’re a bunch of tasteless robots!” But a beautiful work of art, with each intricate detail holding meaning, declaring that this is a family with a proud history, a legacy which they shall never surrender.

This is, of course, only one of many things I have to say. But it is as good a place as any to start. It is something that has bothered me for a long time. These republics overthrow monarchies and claim to defend the liberty of the subject and usher in modernity. Well, if “liberty” and “modernity” are this oppressive and ugly, I’ll take my “tyrannical” and “old fashioned” monarchs back, please. I’m sick of republics, I’m sick of their pseudo-liberty, and I’m sick of their boring, tasteless, tri-colour banners. The world needs a change. A change back to the old ways. We need to remember our traditions, our monarchs, and restore them!

I’m not a conservative because I can’t stand the present status quo. I’m not a progressive or a liberal because I don’t think the next “new” thing will fix the problem. I’m a reactionary, because I know it is only by looking back to our roots that we can take the proper steps forward.

I’m still out of shape, but that doesn’t stop me from running.

I am… The Reactionary Runner! God save the Kings! Every last one! (And yes, God, save the Queens, too!) + In hoc signo vinces +


  1. I posted a link at The Rambling Royalist to this post. I'll probably put you in the blogroll later today.

  2. Old post, but thought I might say something...

    The French tricolor, as I'm sure you know, originated with the 1791 constitution - the colors of Paris, blue and red, united with the royal white. It was flipped in 1792 though, to the modern blue-white-red.

    While heraldry is certainly beautiful, it does make for an unnecessarily complicated flag. Which is why I like the Union Jack - heraldry made simple.