The Earl and Countess of Strathearn’s Scottish tour ended on Thursday, May 27th. It ended, I think, in controversy, with William and Kate’s handlers/courtiers pulling some sketchy drama with the “secret meeting” with Gordon Brown. Brown is working on an anti-Scottish-independence group and obviously, the Windsors don’t want Scottish independence either. But the f–ksh-t around the secret meeting emphasized how inappropriate and political it really was. Will and Kate probably could have gotten away with positive (or merely neutral) reviews of their lightweight tour if not for that meeting and the drama around it. Which makes it especially weird that Katie Nicholl at Vanity Fair doesn’t even mention the meeting in her exclusive coverage of the tour. Her piece is mostly about how Will & Kate really nailed the tour and did good work on behalf of the crown (eh), plus she interviews Dickie Arbiter, who sucks. Some highlights:
William has been playing his most senior role to date this week: According to constitutional expert Alastair Bruce William, William has been laying the foundation for the monarchy’s future in Scotland. “Scotland holds deep importance to this heir and being Lord High Commissioner will only increase his understanding of the unique traditions that peg Scotland as unique, significant and ancient,” he told Vanity Fair.
William’s dull Lord High Commissioner speech: “William demonstrated in his speech that he understands the constitutional importance of The Queen’s promise to protect the Church’s privileges,” said Alastair Bruce William. “Succession may be automatic, but a new monarch has to make a promise to uphold the privileges of the Church of Scotland. By referencing it, William showed that he understands the constitution.”
Scottish independence: The debate about whether Scotland should retain the monarchy shows a divided nation. A recent Sky News survey found that 39 per cent were in favour and 39 per cent were against, with 22 per cent saying they didn’t know. William and Kate’s recent visit could see the result of the poll change significantly, according to former Buckingham Palace spokesman Dickie Arbiter. “Things are very much in the balance in Scotland and William’s visit is significant,” Arbiter said. “He could be the Royal Family’s secret weapon when it comes to the United Kingdom. The appointment to Lord High Commissioner is another part of William’s learning curve but the trip has also allowed him to lay down markers for the importance of the monarchy to Scotland. By sending William on a tour like this, the royals are appealing to the masses and particularly the younger generation. They are the leaders of tomorrow.”
Will & Kate need the youths to love them: “By all appearances he and Catherine have been a success,” Arbiter said. “William is showing himself to be very personal, his address to the National Assembly was spot on. I think we are seeing him evolve. That’s what the monarchy is all about. It evolves through the younger generation and in 30 years time it will be George’s turn to do the same thing in Scotland.”
The small crowds: Despite the smaller crowds, because of social distancing, there was still huge support for the royals. “He was remarkably attentive when he spoke to the Scots from the Regiment of Scotland who had put on his Guard of Honour and took time to speak to a number of the soldiers which was very well received,” said a source who was with the Duke.
[From Vanity Fair]
Again, no mention of the Gordon Brown stuff, which ruined whatever goodwill the Keens might have accumulated. I can’t believe this is really the plan moving forward for the Windsors though: setting the bar lower and lower, sending Will & Kate out on lightweight “tours” where they watch movies and get photographed doing fun vacation activities, and then they politically interfere with the democratic process. And then adding an embiggening layer of bullsh-t on top. “He could be the Royal Family’s secret weapon” and “another part of William’s learning curve” – sounds like William is getting infantilized just as much as Kate these days. They’re treated like overgrown toddlers who need applause for dressing themselves and not making asses out themselves too much. This can’t be the way forward for the Windsors.
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.
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