Monday, September 01, 2014

Anglophilia


An interesting issue for real American conservatives, from Kirkians and Burkeans rightward. I love the mother country, including the royals (I've seen Prince Charles and Camilla up close), and am proud to have lived there.

Other Americans write:
As a vexillologist, I can tell you authoritatively that THIS is the most beautiful flag that God ever divinely inspired. A combination of the crosses of sts George, Andrew and Patrick, it is unambiguously Christian. It is also balanced, and the colours complement each other well. In fairness to my German cousins, I may say that the flag of Bavaria is beautiful, if a touch too busy (I own one of these, too). You ideally want a flag to be simple; if it's too hard for a schoolkid to draw and colour, it's too damned busy (i.e., that hideous, asymmetrical American flag, which is nothing more than the coat-of-arms of that Masonic arch-fiend, Jughead Georgie Washington). But the red, white and black Imperial German flag is undeniably appealing, especially the variations with the Maltese cross. Yet my personal favourite has to be the Union Jack. At my funeral, I hope my coffin is draped with it. GOD SAVE THE QUEEN!
Interestingly, Britain isn't flag-crazy, unlike here. About the only time you see the Union Flag (Union Jack) is maybe on a government building. That's because there were and maybe still are legal restrictions on who may use the flag and for what. Also, I think Britain, like Canada until 1965, doesn't have an official flag. It's like the hodgepodge, partly unwritten constitution: the government uses the Union Jack by custom. Fly it around here and people think you're an old Who fan.

Even though the mother country has long been Protestant and Masonic and is now less religious and more liberal than us, I agree about the Union Flag, which is why I'd love to see Canada bring back the Red Ensign. When I was a kid, when I heard "Maple Leaf Flag," I thought they were saying "make-believe flag." In 1776 I would have been a Loyalist, no question. The rebels didn't have a case.

The trouble with Americans adopting British spelling and lingo today is it's no longer taken as a conservative statement but as simply pretentious and/or something Europhile American liberals might do, the opposite of your meaning.
I respectfully disagree with our right honourable friend, Lord Beeler. I have written lengthy essays on the subject, and it is dear to me. T. and I, along with countless friends, adopted UK spelling (the way God spells) more than 20 years ago, and we use it reflexively and without affectation. As a Southerner I know that many of my fellow compatriots have done the same, especially the home-schoolers, as they know that that evil proto-communist, Noah Webster, was bandying about linguistic notions so philologically unsound that people during his lifetime thought the man insane. Indeed, even he couldn't adhere to his own daft ideas. I have in fact written a 300-page book that adheres to said spelling, and my protagonist outlines within the first few pages exactly and eloquently why she does so. Mind you, I do say "sidewalk," not "pavement," and so on, just for clarity. But otherwise, "neighbour" with a "U" and so on. When I explain my irrefutable logic to Americans, most of them agree with me...Or mayhap they're only trying to shut me up!
Mr. Webster invented American spelling out of spite after independence. If the revolution never happened, we'd sound the same as now. Our common starting point with the British Englishes is circa 1600, the re-enacted Original Pronunciation for Shakespeare. We talk differently because English sounded very different then. But yes, we'd use British spelling, as Canada mostly does.
Having just had the misfortune to see a "Christian rap" video, I think a lot of American religiosity is pretty worthless. It's the anti-culture and without value. God intended that we should be Trad Caths or Greek Orthodox (or Anglo-Catholic).
Yes, trad Cath, Orthodox, or Continuing Anglican; Episcopal is compromised. Hono(u)rable options (I've done the spelling/lingo on and off over the years) in religion for folk like us: "papist" (the original English religion), Catholic minus the Pope (Orthodoxy as a lifeboat — someone else's culture; I respect principled conversions — or a kind of high Anglicanism as in the Continuum), or classic high-church Protestant (Cranmer's and Hooker's doctrine in the original form, not "Enlightenment" liberalism). Thing is all that is foreign and scary to English people today.

Anglophilic affectations used to mean "my family has been rich and powerful ever since Britain was, which is how I picked this up"; now they mean "I hate conservative Americans and identify with modern Britain and continental Europe; they're so much more enlightened." Liberal snob. The opposite of what you want! I don't lie about my origins and am interested in being understood; adopted British usages are too easily misread.
Mutatis mutandis, of course.
Most so-called "conservative" organisations are entirely too liberal, and the term has been hijacked by men who are actually not conservative at all but Enlightenment Masonic morons. This is why perhaps T., especially, and I often refer to ourselves as Traditionalists or restorationists. Whenever some stupid Republican troll calls with a 'phone poll, I always say, "I'm a Catholic monarchist. We don't vote, and the very existence of any political parties is a liberal scandal." That shuts 'em up!
Yes, that's what's wrong with American conservatism, that it's not conservative enough; also, what passes for American conservatism now has been invaded by Jewish Trotskyism (the neocons: "change the world" and Israel über alles — no, I'm not promoting pogroms or Holocausts). That said, as a Catholic I'm apolitical; the old America was good to my church so I won't write off all republicanism. But monarchism is an option. Again, ironically, Canada has the Queen but is liberal like the mother country; I don't think they like your brand of the right. Anglophilic affectations in America = Protestant. In the mother country, Catholics are a much smaller minority absolutely and proportionally; I think English Canada's the same. The old America was better to my church than the past 500 years in Britain. That's not American St. Patrick's Day blarney but fact.

Also, "Anglo-Catholic" has come to mean "liberal with high cultural religious affectations" (British usages and something like my Mass, but women priests and gay marriage, like the "enlightened" mother country) not the worldview of a T.S. Eliot.

We wyll haue the Masse. I've been to the shrines of SS. John Southworth and Margaret Clitherow in England and will never look at Anglicanism the same way again. There's something creepily self-aware about the evil in the British establishment; they know jolly well what the names of their old cathedrals, parishes, and colleges mean and say to it all, "I will not serve." Protestant and Masonic.
Things are different at my SSPX church. Lovely conversation with a half-Spanish Anglophile, this morning. Her uncle was in Franco's government (God bless him). Many there approve of the Union Jack on my car. I once festooned the basement in countless streamers of Union Jacks, draping them from the ceiling and hanging a large, three-by-five flag in honour of a visiting English bishop... As for America, it's anti-Catholic to its core, unless it's co-opting purely nominal Catholics (as in the Supreme Court; most of 'em). Look at the Know-Nothings; the KKK; the anti-Catholic legislation of the 1700s. You are right: the rebels had no cause. But one thing they object to was George III's liberal policies toward Catholics in Quebec... Yes, the British and northern European apostasy is heartbreaking. As I told Elena this morning, I would have pulled for the Armada and King Phillip and, later, the Stuarts and the Jacobites.
Yes, the King kept his word defending Quebec's Catholicism; I've read that the Americans wanted to Protestantize them. As colonies we weren't under English law about religion; the Crown actually sided with the Dissenters vs. the Anglicans in one case. So again, in 1776 I would have remained a loyal British subject, as lots of Catholic Irish have been. And I hear you. I met then-Fr. Williamson, whom I understand agrees about the American Revolution being wrong.

The SSPX is my Defcon 1 last resort. Right now Pope Francis (low-church Frank the hippie Pope) and the American church have me at Defcon 4; in the '80s we were at Defcon 3. We have our Mass because of the saintly Archbishop Lefebvre. Make Bernard Fellay a cardinal.
Yes, His Excellency was a bishop then, and he confirmed my wife and me. Alas, whilst he is right about many things, he's dead wrong about the Holocaust and anti-Semitism. He really can sound quite foolish, I fear, all too often. My wife is half-Jewish and lost cousins at Auschwitz, so such things offend her deeply. Me, too.
I am a quarter Spanish. My dad grew up speaking it. I know it but not fluently.

I appreciate the SSPX/paleocon critiques of American liberty and the free market but both historically have worked well for American Catholics, so American traditionalists who remember and miss the '50s don't deserve to be brushed off. So I prefer to adopt part of my own culture (and I remember the fading away of the old Middle America I celebrate) than pretend to be a squire or something.
Well, I DO detest American conservatism, and while outside the entire American political spectrum, often find American liberals easier to relate to than American conservatives. I have found that it is the former who are often more open-minded about revisionist views of the American Revolution, and the latter who are inclined to the sort of idolatry of the Flag and the "Founding Fathers" (traitors who should have been hanged, drawn, and quartered) that I find so nauseating.

As an Anglican myself (I don't call myself "Anglo-Catholic" since my parish doesn't claim to be, though my preferences lean that way) obviously my perspective is somewhat different, but I'm not convinced that pre-1960s Americanism was so good for Catholicism either. American Catholics shamefully bent over backwards to assimilate sacrificing much of their identity and culture in the process, paving the way for the desolation since Vatican II, which was at least partially a triumph of American ideas on Religious Liberty and Church/State relations which had hitherto been rightly rejected by European Catholics. The 1950s American RC Church may have looked good on paper but was obviously fragile and the standards of music were pretty abysmal which made it easy for the modernists to fill the vacuum with junk. Austria, Bavaria, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal, mostly ruled by monarchies, those are the Catholic cultures I admire.
Taking as your text the great Thomas Day, who's done yeoman service explaining American Catholic low-church awfulness to hurt Anglo-Catholic alumni; the problem does pre-date the council as you say. The liturgical movement wanted elegant High Masses everywhere; before the council in English-speaking Catholicism you had Low Masses junked up with unliturgical hymns. Afterwards, you had... Low Masses junked up with unliturgical hymns, only the Mass had been low-churched and chop-jobbed, and the hymns had guitars. The liturgical movement was betrayed and forgotten.
I think excessive glorification of and nostalgia for the 1950s (which I don't feel at all, unless we're talking about the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II, or the Greek, Iranian, or Ethiopian monarchies which were still apparently strong then) has done a lot of harm to the traditionalist movement. The traditionalist Catholics I find the most simpatico are those for whom if there's going to be any turning the clock back to the '50s, it had rather be the 1250s. In any case, the future of the traditionalist movement is in its young people who have no more memory of the 1950s than they do of the 1250s... and at least in some cases prefer the latter.
Respectfully disagreeing. We didn't compromise in the '50s but again I appreciate the SSPX/paleo criticism of Americanism and the market. Beware lefty nostalgia: yes, the seeds of the Sixties were in the '50s. "Let's space-age modernize the church!" Economic liberalism and libertarianism as a religion: "do your own thing" = "every man for himself" = "just die already." The 1250s are dead; the people from the 1950s are still with us so it's a living tradition.

Politically, the Special Relationship is only about 100 years old. Historically, Americans feared Britain, a world power that could take our independence away. That changed around World War I. The story is the powers that be knew the British Empire had peaked so the long slide had begun; the plan was to shift the center from London to Washington. The story of the Rhodes Group/Council on Foreign Relations: the empire kept going, only the ex-colony was now really in charge. Although you saw signs — the Depression making cash-strapped Britain spin off its white colonies, granting them independence in 1931, it didn't become apparent until after World War II, when in 1947 the British told Washington they were broke and couldn't send troops to defend Greece from the Communists. The Special Relationship isn't necessarily bad — we were honorable defending our people, the Australians, from the Japanese and volunteering for the RAF and RCAF, as we were by protecting the mother country from the Soviets — but the British government sort of lives vicariously through our neocon foreign misadventures. Maybe a Little England foreign policy about Britain's own interests would be better.

The only royal souvenir I have is a Queen Elizabeth II coronation mug.

The Beatles were an instrument of evil. I've seen Paul McCartney up close performing; I understand the charm.

10 comments:

  1. I have nothing particular against George III, save that he shouldn't have been king, and I certainly agree that the American Revolution was legally and "constitutionally" unjustified, BUT

    1. so was the so-called "Glorious Revolution" of 1688-89, and what was the American Revolution but an application to American colonial circumstances of the "Revolution principles" of 1689, so touted by the Whigs in England at the time, and half-buried there subsequently (but taught at Harvard, William & Mary, and Yale throughout the 18th Century)? Moral: one good turn deserves another,

    2. the Union Jack was a direct result of the "Glorious Revolution:" England dragging Scotland, by a combination of bribes and threats, into a political union in 1707 which, so long as it lasts, leaves Scotland's destiny in the hands of English politicians and those of a few Anglicized Scots, and then Ireland into a similar union in 1800 by more threats and rather fewer bribes. Down with those unions, I say.

    The English tried to represent themselves as "Britons" (or British) throughout the 18th Century and beyond, and the Scots as "North Britons" and the Irish (a bit later) as "West Britons," but that didn't get very far. The "glue" that forged the UK and held it together was Protestantism and "no popery:' cf. Linda Colley's *Britons: Forging the Nation 1707-1837* (1992); cf.:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Britons:_Forging_the_Nation_1707%E2%80%931837

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    1. Good points, but I agree with the man I quoted that the Union Jack is still a far more Catholic flag than the Stars and Stripes, which uses its colors. A big cross red with Christ's blood.

      Conveniently forgotten by most is how many Irish were (and still are?) loyal Britons, happily working for the empire around the world in the army, etc. As you doubtless know, equating the Catholic Church with Irish nationalism (the IRA, etc.) is a myth. The church always held it at arm's length; it was based on liberal "Enlightenment" principles. Rather, the Popes hoped for something like the men I quoted want: rather than using Ireland to overthrow Britain, reconverting Britain, bringing its anointed Christian king and mitred and coped state church back into the family. (Also why I think using the Ukraine to attack Russia is dumb; shortsighted.)

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    2. Oh well. This Irish-Italian Boston mongrel can't help but break into a chorus of "Come Out Ye Black and Tan." To para paraphrase the rabbi in *Fiddler on the Roof,* "God bless and keep the British monarch...far away from us."

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  2. If some of those conservative interlocutors of yours really feel the way they do about the United States, then the honorable thing to do would be to renounce their citizenship and leave for another country. Of course, "which country" would be problematic, since no country could ever meet their lofty standards - - not even Malta. This was Brent Bozell's problem, was it not? He went to Francoist Spain seeing it as a kind of reactionary Catholic utopia, but I think the Spaniards threw him out due to his extreme mental illness and all around bad behavior so he had to return to Amerika licking his wounds. This is not to say that I am not unsympathetic to the American Tory cause - - some of my ancestors were Loyalists and were unjustly imprisoned, despoiled of their property, and forced to move to Canada. Nor am I unaware of the hypocritical shortcomings of the Declaration of Independence. And, George III is badly miscast as an intolerable tyrant even though most Americans believe it. But, if one is of the opinion that the entire constitutional order of America is illegitimate from day one, then I would say, please do the right thing, and emigrate - - somewhere.

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    1. Exactly! I lived in modern Britain; it's not an option for them.

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    2. American Tory11:04 am

      Better modern Britain than modern America. But I want the Muslims deported and the republicans exterminated first.

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    3. The Britain I knew was anti-religious; that was 25 years ago and I imagine it's only gotten worse.

      Are you being hyperbolic or facetious? Anyway, those won't happen.

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    4. "If some of those conservative interlocutors of yours really feel the way they do about the United States, then the honorable thing to do would be to renounce their citizenship and leave for another country."

      Not a very original or compelling sentiment; Decius or Diocletian and their chums might have said the same thing, mutatis mutandis, about those disloyal and anti-Roman Christians.

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  3. You see the occasional person put up a Union Flag (the Union Jack is the naval flag) in their garden in Britain. What is more common is the fractious St. George's flag. You see them everywhere. Unfortunately, a lot of the people who put up St. George's flag are horribly racist and prejudiced. It has become associated, probably inevitably with a very narrow and bigoted kind of English identity.

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