Guest coloumnist

The crown jewels are looking a tad tarnished

Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown, warned Shakespeare. And as it happens, 2013 is turning out to be a tough year for Europe's kings and queens.Royalists argue that monarchism's value lies in the seamless continuity that is provided by inherited office, whereas in other constitutional arrangements political leaders come and go.
The downside, however, is that inherited power is subject to potentially calamitous disruption, with no solution except to fume or to revolt. That is what is happening here.Last week's coronation of a new Dutch king, following the abdication of the 75-year-old Queen Beatrix, was somewhat marred by the revelation that their supposedly thrifty 'bicycle monarchy' costs more than the be-ermined and bejewelled British version.

In Spain there have been angry mutterings about King Juan Carlos, whose popularity is at a record low, following anger over his luxurious lifestyle at a time that his subjects struggle to cope with an economic meltdown. And Belgium's Queen Fabiola has been exposed as scheming to avoid inheritance tax.In comparison, the problems in Britain seem minor. Queen Elizabeth II, who last year celebrated an astonishing 60 years on the throne, has been Royalty (Pty) Ltd's equivalent of the unflagging Duracell bunny.This week, however, Buckingham Palace announced that the 87-year-old monarch would not be attending November's Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in Sri Lanka.

Editor's Comment
Has life become worthless?

As many wondered what wrong the young boy could have done to end up killed, it emerged that his own cousin was a suspect in the murder after he claimed P50,000 from Botswana Life. Thato Tsametse, who was last week sentenced to death for the murder of his cousin, had reportedly taken out two Mmoloki Funeral Covers valued at P25,000 each.Over the years, the media has been covering the murder case, and some revelation has come up that certain...

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