Now I'm not bothered either way about the Monarchy. Sure, they cost £x each year but they generate £y. I don't know whether x is greater than y, nor do I care as the difference wouldn't pay our Benefits bill for a single day. If we got rid of Queenie and Co, we'd only have to replace them with some awful Tony Blair / Simon Cowell / David Beckham figures.
As it is, we can always rely on Phil the Greek and Prince Harry to provide some good entertainment.
So, I'll get to the point of this post. Whilst waiting for a train the other day I overheard two girls, probably in their early twenties, talking about how they were going to some anti-Jubilee protest. I had no idea that any were planned, so I listened with interest. They were complaining bitterly that the Royal Family had been born into privilege, had never had to work and shouldn't be given our money.
The irony of the situation was lost on them. They were both British- ie lucky enough to be born into the top 5% of the World's wealth, with opportunities available for the taking that a Chinese peasant or an African farmer can only dream of. Through no talent of their own, they had managed to exist in an era of unprecedented wealth, with free healthcare and a social security safety net that have been available for about 60 out of the last million years. They had enough money to travel by train and were well dressed in comparison with the average Eastern European, South American (or for that matter- me). One had an iPhone and the other had a tattoo and some ironmongery in her face.
These things require disposable income, as did their takeaway drinks from Costa Coffee. The majority of the Earth's people do not have a single penny to spend on anything but survival and even the concept of having 'free time' to attend a protest, ie being rich enough not to have to dedicate every waking moment to work, preparing a meal or bringing up children, must seem an almost unbelievable concept.
I did not discover whether they actually paid any taxes or not, as my attention was distracted by a prettier group of women arriving on the platform, babbling about their Jubilee Party. Whether we can draw any conclusions from their relative attractiveness, I do not know.