After being left of the royal invitation list, uber-monarchist David Flint attacks republicans who weren't. Senior correspondent Barry Everingham, who's been to a few (hundred) royal functions in his time, corrects the record.
In his usual feline and bitchy manner, Professor David Flint takes on republicans who attend royal functions, obviously believing they should be ill-mannered and refuse invitations.
Flint, of course, is just cranky about not receiving a vice-regal invitation to meet the Queen on her current tour, as was reported today in the The Age:
While society has been anxiously checking mailboxes for entree cards to a grand reception at Parliament House on Friday evening, South Australian Liberal senator Cory Bernardi took up the cudgels on behalf of one of the spurned: arch monarchist and the convener of Australians for a Constitutional Monarchy, Professor David Flint.
Professor Flint has made it known his mailbox has remained lamentably empty of regal envelopes, and Senator Bernardi - who noted he also had been left off the list - told a Senate committee he was surprised by such an omission.
Poor forgotten Flint, Australia's most passionate royalist, unsurprisingly takes umbrage that scurrilous republicans such as Geoffrey Robertson and Kathy Lette were at the Palace to meet the royal couple before they left for the CHOGM meeting in Perth.
Now, ignoring his sadness and distress for a moment, it is obvious that Flint has no idea how the system works, so – in an attempt to make him less of a fool then he clearly is – let me educate him on how these things happen.
For starters, the Queen doesn’t say: Oh, I think I’ll have a party for all those Australian celebrities who live over here; a kind of farewell before One goes to CHOGM.
No Professor — it’s more likely that Australia House said to the Palace, why don’t you blokes have a reception for some of our people to say a Hello and Goodbye to HM before she takes off.
We’ll give you a list — so get back to us.
All that would have happened many months ago; the Queen’s diary is usually made up well in advance.
And the folk at Australia House would make sure the people invited are interesting for the royals to meet up with.
Buckingham Palace doesn’t go prying into people’s political or religious beliefs before invitations to functions are sent out — as much as somebody like Flint would like them to.
Flint is at his worst when non-Conservative governments in Australia host royal visits — he seems to think they will dumb things down.
Julia Gillard might be a republican, but she’s certainly not pushing for one at this time of her prime ministership — any more than the arch-monarchist Tony Abbott is talking about a republic.
His mission is one of destruction; no policies, no vision — let’s drag Australia back to the dark old days, put the workers where they belong and make sure the super- rich get richer.
He’s astute enough to know that once he starts on rubbishing the need for a change the Turnbull supporters and the majority of Liberal republicans sitting behind him will get agitated and he knows that any debate between him and Turnbull will have the former Opposition Leader wiping the floors with him. Finesse always outdoes thuggery.
Flint stupidly says Republicans fall over themselves trying to meet any of the royals to come here. Crap, David, crap.
Does he expect the Prime Minister to send a deputy to meet the Australian head of state — particularly as the Queen is the first to admit the decision to become a republic is in our hands.
And, on that subject Flint, slaps down Gerard Henderson for correctly ridiculing his mad assertion that we are already a “crowned republic”.
Henderson said, in his column:
On Sunday, Professor David Flint argued that Australia is "already a republic . . . we're a crowned republic". This is quite misleading - as Flint's very own position indicates. He is national convener of Australians for a Constitutional Monarchy. He does not claim to represent such an entity as "Australians for a Crowned Republic". Britain is a constitutional monarchy. So is Australia. And so are other members of the Commonwealth of Nations such as Canada and New Zealand.
One of these days, Flint might drag himself away from the mirror and explain just what that piece of fantasy really means.
It’s heartening to see he is giving sidekick Jai Martinkovits some of his precious airtime, something he regularly denied the previous henchman, the hapless Tom Flynn, whom he knifed in the back.
While Flint runs the ACM, it can never be taken seriously, which helps the republican cause tremendously.