[In the United Kingdom, the monarchy is essentially self funded through income from properties owned by the Crown. Further, no contribution whatsoever is made by Australia, Canada New Zealand nor any other offshore Realm.
In this comment first published on the website of the British Monarchist League, Thomas J. Muscatello-DeLacroix Mills, the Secretary General of the League, exposes the fundamental flaws in arguments made recently by the United Kingdom republican movement which works closely with other republican movements. ]
It is well known that Republic dislikes, disrespects and would like to dismantle the monarchy piece by piece.
However, what Republic does not see, nor do they want to understand is not just the value of the monarchy, but the personification of the State in Her Majesty The Queen, the binding and unifying factors of the institution of the Crown, and the culmination of our heritage, culture, and traditions in a viable and treasured Head of State whom is living history herself.
The benefits of the British Crown and the return to the population far outweigh the true cost of the crown to the public.
Republic has recently released their version of what they feel is a true and accurate cost of the Crown to the public; however, despite their exaggeration and need to paint the monarchy black, their press release and figures actually raise more questions, which dispel Republic's claims by acknowledging the real facts about the true cost of the monarchy.
Republic’s new accounting of Crown finances raises a lot more questions than it answers, and further goes to show that Republic is a biased organisation which uses flawed and false information, along with skewed facts to further their destructive agenda.
If Republic's findings and accounting is truly accurate, then why are the following questions left unanswered, and not acknowledged by the Republic organisation?
1) In recent years, more news articles have stated that the cost of Royal security is estimated at around £50M, including at least one article that gives mention to this figure in 2011.
If this is truly the cost (which everyone has accepted), why does Republic all of a sudden decide to pick one solitary figure, when previously they have estimated the cost between £50-£100 million?
If we take the high figure of £100M to protect and secure the Queen and the Royal Family, then how much does republic think it would cost to protect an elected President and their family if Britain was to become a Republic?
Royal palaces and castles (or Presidential compounds) would still need protection, as would the people in power and their family members who would live in them.
2) If Republic feels that the cost of securing a “First Family” would be far less in a republic than securing the royal family in our constitutional monarchy, is Republic stating that there would be a need for fewer protection/security officers?
If this is the case, Republic is acknowledging that employed individuals would be made redundant (which would then force them to seek temporary council assistance or unemployment assistance), or transferred to other duties which would mean the cost of them being employed (or on subsidy) would remain the same or possibly higher, so in retrospect this statement of Republic’s reporting cannot be deemed an actual "savings" to the tax payer.
3) Republic should be able to explain fully, with hard facts and costs, as to why a “Republic” would cost less to the taxpayer. Does Republic prove that a President would be a less high profile target than the Queen?
If in fact a President of the United Kingdom would be less of a target than the Queen, does Republic accept that a Ceremonial President would be of far less interest to the people of this country and the world than the Queen and Royal Family, due to their international celebrity status as well as international role as the Head of State and Royal Family of 16 other nations?
– Would the cost to the taxpayer be less because a Ceremonial British President would not be the Head of State of the addition 15 other Nations in which the Queen is currently the Head of State?
Does that difference not make it an unfair comparison, which can be seen as to why we have to pay to protect foreign heads of state if they visit the United Kingdom, and also when the Queen travels abroad to those nations where there is a requirement for additional protect? Republic often likes to pretend that the crown is not the head of other nations, nor do they give reference to the Commonwealth, in which they treat these facts as if they do not exist.
Republic therefore refuses to acknowledge the role of the Crown in respect to its position as Sovereign of other nations along with its role within the nations that comprise the Commonwealth.
– Would the cost be less according to Republic because at present, the Royal Family carries out engagements on behalf of the Queen, which are things a ceremonial president would do? Therefore at the moment the nation is getting far more in terms of service to our people than we would in a Republic with a President as currently there are over 2000 engagements carried out by the Royal family each year, as compared to only several hundred by the President of Ireland, and also by the President of the United States of America.
4) Republic gives mention to the cost of councils for Royal visits. Why has the estimated cost to all councils according to Republic, gone from £10 million to £26 million, when the sourcing does not suggest any new information?
If a “President” was to visit councils, would the cost for his position visiting the people, be less than that of Her Majesty? How can it be reasonable and factual to take an extreme case of excessive spending by a local council (which got a lot of media attention including an article and reporting by the BBC website), and then multiply that figure by the number of engagements carried out by the Queen?
…Crown Estate & Royal Duchies…
5) Can Republic be 100% sure that the Duchies of Lancaster and Cornwall will transfer into public ownership if the United Kingdom were to become a Republic?
This is something Republic may want, but our constitutional history and legal system is a lot more complex than that. Taking into account the original statues of the Civil List, the transfer of ownership of any properties, buildings originally purchased with private monies of the Crown (Sandringham, Balmoral, and even Buckingham House [Palace]), and the sorting out of what would truly be government property versus property owned by the Royal Family, would be a lengthy process indeed. By assuming all properties into public ownership as Republic are suggesting, would be unfair and almost tyrannical not to give concern to the private property of the Royal Family, thus making the United Kingdom no better as a Republic than Greece currently is with the treatment of their Royal Family.
6) According to Republic, do the listed cost of other republics and constitutional monarchies include every cost associated that Republic has assigned to their claimed cost of our own monarchy, such as security and costs of local visits?
7) Republic claims a total expense of £15 million for the cost of maintaining the Royal palaces and Windsor Castle.
These properties would still have to be maintained in a Republic unless sold off into the private sector. Does the cost of the German, Irish, or American Presidency include maintaining such significant buildings? Buckingham palace and Windsor castle are significantly larger than the Irish presidential palace and that of the White House in America.
…self funded monarchy….
8) Republic quite often forgets that the Crown holds tracts of land in its own right, which helps make up the exchange in the civil list. The entire profit from the Crown Estate (not to be confused with the crowns duchies) goes directly into the treasury for public use, in which the public are given over an extra £200M of revenue to use.
The new Sovereign Support Grant which is set to replace the Civil List is based off of the profits and performance of the Crown Estate which will go to help fund the duties of the Crown, which will create less of a burden on the tax payer directly. This change in how the crown is funded will show that the public is not directly paying for the Crown to function, therefore relieving the tax payer from any real cost associated with financing the Crown, which is currently offset by public funds.
It can therefore be seen that each tax payer in the United Kingdom would then benefit directly from the new Sovereign Support Grant in the way that the crown will be funded by monies given to the treasury for public use, which they would not otherwise have if the Crown Estate or crown itself was not in existence. Therefore, the tax payer is getting more value for money within the system of our Constitutional Monarchy, as the public is in sense receiving a reduction in their taxes by an amount worth over £200M.
Given Republic’s accounting of royal finances, their report leaves more questions than it gives answers. Despite what Republic wishes to see for the United Kingdom, the truth of the matter is that things are not as cut and dry as Republic would have them be, without stripping the royal family of its dignity and the nation of its most treasured and valuable institution.
By instituting a republic as the Republic organisation fancies; simply saying that the State would take everything is extremely short sighted and somewhat tyrannical which would never happen, unless through the means of a violent revolution in which Republic would not be too far removed from supporting such a process.
…audited and accounted…
Royal finances are accounted for and verified though government audit so that the cost of the crown is accurate and complete.
In Republic's efforts to defile and discredit Her Majesty, they have inflated royal expenses, exaggerated
costs, and boldly lied about the true elements of royal finance in their own “Royal Finance Report”.
Her Majesty is naturally frugal and has always been accountable to the public whom she has served without a blemish for almost 60 years. Her Majesty has made the Crown more transparent and cost effective over the past 20 years, and provides the nation with more value for money than any other governmental institution going.
Republic deplores the Crown and even more Her Majesty, which is grossly unfair given the scandal, misuse and waste of money offered by Westminster, yet Republic does nothing to curb the expenditure or defile Downing Street or the MP’s in the ways they do Her Majesty, who has done nothing to deserve the insults and criticisms Republic offer her.
Republics resentment, anger and outright lies towards the crown are reflected throughout their recent reporting of royal finances, which is a tool of deception used to mislead the public, gain sympathy for their cause, and advance their own dangerous and anarchical agenda throughout our great nation.
Republic's deceit will be truly uncovered early next week, as the Palace is set to report on royal finance and expenditure, where we will see the true cost of the Crown to the tax payer.