Last year Lino Carbosiero, ‘consultant style director’ at upmarket hair salon Daniel Galvin in Marylebone, central London where a cut and blow job…DRY, BLOWDRY…costs up to £72 for men, was awarded an MBE for services to ‘hairdressing’. I remind you all it was Signore Carbosiero who revolutionised British politics by suggesting Prime Minister David Cameron’s parted his hair to the ‘left’ rather than to the ‘right’. I’m afraid this annual handing out of ‘honours’…Knighthoods, Peerages, OBEs, CBEs and MBEs…really does put a ‘crimper‘ in my shorts! Honouring self-made entrepreneurs for making something from nothing but a seed of an idea, and ending up giving gainful employment to thousands of people is one thing, but honouring highly paid actors and actresses for ‘play-acting’, particularly those who play the Queen, is quite frankly, ridiculous! Dame Judy Dench, Dame Helen Mirren, Dame Kristin Scott Thomas. Yes, they were all ennobled for their services to the ‘performing arts’, but I wonder if they would have been made ‘Dames’ if they hadn’t played our current Queen on stage or on the silver screen? There is a long history of knighting stage performances going back to the 18th century. At a time when there was no television, cinema or radio, members of the royal family were often seen attending theatre productions, so I guess it was logical to ‘reward’ individuals for entertaining them.
Hey, elevation to The House of Lords doesn’t necessarily make one a better person! Lord Taylor was jailed for a year over illegal expenses claims totalling £11,000, and Lord Hanningfield was jailed for nine months over illegal expenses claims totalling £13,379. Look, I admit a bias. I’m pro Republicanism, and anti-Monarchy/Establishment, because I see the later as a way to perpetuate the class system, which I sincerely believe is unhealthy, splitting society. I take my hat to painters Francis Bacon and LS Lowry, who both refused all honours! So too did John Cleese (actor), Danny Boyle (film director), Albert Finney (actor), Jim Broadbent (actor), Honour Blackman (actress) and Ken Loach (film director).
Look here, the British Empire is dead, Britain is bankrupt, the Chinese have finally got their own back on us for buying their tea and paying for it in opium and thus addicting millions of their countrymen, yet Buckingham Palace in collusion with the Prime Minister’s Office insist on ‘ennobling’ individuals and doling out lesser honours mainly to those individuals who have already enjoyed great success in their careers. This makes a ‘nonsense’ of David Cameron’s statement, ‘we’re all in it together!’ The Honours system perpetuates the Class system! I quite understand need to honour people who have worked tirelessly for charity, who work for the benefit of others without any thought of personal financial gain, but in actuality most recipients of honours are rewarded for just being very successful, making pot loads of money for themselves, and in the process making lots of money for the country in the form of tax. At the end of the day, no one is rewarded for trying and failing. Failure is therefore not tolerated! I for one would never refer to anyone as ‘Sir’, or ‘Dame, or ‘My Lord’. I find it all an anachronism, and quite disgusting, for often individuals are sometimes ennobled just to ‘get them on side’ and shut them up! For example, Doreen Lawence, the mother of murdered student Stephen Lawence (1993), was awarded first an OBE and was last year made a Baroness. Baroness Lawence of Clarendon criticised the police in their investigation of her son’s murder and even hinted at ‘institutionalised racism’. The purpose of the Honours List has always been to preserve the status quo and thus perpetuate the Monarchy, nothing else, and that is why England is unlikely to become a Republic. Patronage stinks, whether it is at the behest of 10 Downing Street or Buckingham Palace!