TV audiences plummeting during the blanket coverage of Philip Mountbatten-Windsor’s death was a nation tuning out.
The uncritical adulation from broadcasters and politicians for an aged Duke and hereditary monarchy was an out-of-touch Edwardian
knee-bend, driving people to hit the escape button on their remotes.
Decent folk, recognising that a widow and family are grieving, will largely ignore this week’s state-sanctioned mourning.
And the thousands in England heading to pubs for the first time in months, myself included, are embracing a return to life, not disrespecting a dead man.
Boris Johnson’s cancelled his pint, yet he, Keir Starmer and the BBC can’t resist gushing subserviently, as they compete to hail a privileged, flawed establishment figure as a fallen superhero.
The Prime Minister pulling the plug on No10 televised media briefings conveniently shields him from questions about Matt Hancock and Rishi Sunak’s entanglement with money-making predecessor David Cameron.
The scandal over Cameron exploiting Cabinet contacts on behalf of financier Lex Greensill points to a rancid chumocracy at the heart of the Conservative government.
MPs returning early in Westminster to laud a Prince without a vote would serve our democracy better by examining back-scratching at the top.
Sending off a single royal as though he were a god, when so little is done after tragedies such as Hillsborough and Grenfell, underlines inequality in Britain, where the role of the monarchy is to legitimise unearned wealth and power.
Propaganda that censors criticism and marginalises republicans is an enemy of scrutiny, accountability, reason, choice and democracy.
Let’s send condolences to the Queen but not pretend, as I heard one tearful royal commentator preposterously claim, that Philip’s passing is like a death in the family.
Turning his death into a circus isn’t in Britain’s interests.