Monday, September 06, 2010

The Pope's Visit

Can anybody explain to me exactly why my taxes are being used to help fund the Pope's visit? The man's views range from the merely bigoted to the truly bizarre. At least when some mad mullah comes over they pay their own way and provide an amusing spectacle.

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

The pope is a head of state, and the convention for many years is when you invite a head of state to visit you pay for the visit.

A better question is why the heck did we invite him to visit in the first place .....

Mark H Wilkinson said...

It's a state visit. If the mad mullah in question were, say, Ali Khamenei, at the government's invitation (an unlikely scenario, I know), we'd likewise be paying.

By the way, it was Gordon Brown's idea, back in February 2009, possibly in an attempt to help Labour's support in Scotland.

Lilyofthefield said...

What state is he head of? Vatican City? Is that a proper state?
(That's a genuine question, btw)

Anonymous said...

that's right lotf, vatican city

ever been there? reminds me of that proverb

it will be easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the gates of heaven

then again they'll probably claim all that wealth belongs to the church and not them

CFM

Anonymous said...

Yes, Vatican City is a proper state. Hence the Pope is a head of state.

Anonymous said...

OK I guess when you have visitors, especially heads of state, it's probably polite to make them welcome, put them up and maybe treat them to a dinner or two - but if, as reported, this visit is going to us millions (where does it all go?), is that not taking the p*ss a bit? (ESPECIALLY when many here are struggling financially?).

BTW - do all heads of state cost as much?

Anonymous said...

it goes mostly on security I imagine to prevent people trying to assassinate him (too many s's?)

Anonymous said...

I think he's mainly coming to try and smooth over the atrocious child abuse scandal...he probably thinks if he makes an appearance, trust in the catholic clergy will be restored.
As if!!!

Kimpatsu said...

The Holy See was only recognised as a state in 1929 as a consequence of the concordat between the Roman Catholic Church and fascism. It should be derecognised immediately, and Pope Palpatine arrested for his involvement in the rape and torture of children should he ever set foot on British soil.

Mosher said...

FYI one of our staff lives near where his Papalship will be staying. The entire road leading up there - despite being one of the less bad ones in the area - has been resurfaced.

I guess the Popemobile doesn't have very good suspension. What a generous use of our tax.

inspectorgadget said...

When we moved, I went to one of their schools after my initial London Comp. It was really good. They learned me to read and write, and I could do Latin. No sciences though..........

Mark H Wilkinson said...

@Kimpatsu: I'm afraid you're confusing the Vatican and the See. The Vatican City's statehood is indeed a recent creation; the custom of treating the Holy See (ie. the government of the Roman Catholic Church) as a sovereign entity akin to a state goes back some centuries.

Tim said...

The Holy See is not by any normal defination a state because it has no teritory. However it is treated as a state on the grounds that it always has been and that is how things worked in the olden days. Essentailly it is regarded as a state by the Uk government on the circular grounds that the Uk government regards it as a state. The Vatican city is technically a different legal entity. It has teritory ceded by "el Duce" in 1929 in a treaty with italy. It is not recognised by the state by the Uk Government and our diplomatic relations are with the Holy See.

It is not a member of the UN (although it has observer status) and the UK is not obliged to recognise it as a state. We pretend it is a state solely on teh grounds that we have volentarily chosen to do so.

Anonymous said...

I think you will find that the taxpayer contributed to the 'cleaning up' and preparation for the venues and places he visited (as per the above road surfacing). Also the safety and security aspects of the British public.
The catholic Church paid for the personal security of the pope himself and his entourage.