Prince Charles Is Strange and Prince Philip a Radio Star Claims NZ Politician
THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH: A former deputy prime minister of New Zealand has reignited the country’s republican movement by demanding an end to the monarchy on the death of The Queen and castigating The Prince of Wales as “strange”.
In addition to mocking the Prince of Wales views, Michael Cullen, who was deputy Prime Minister in Helen Clark’s Labour government, accused the Duke of Edinburgh of being “insensitive and prejudiced”.
The comments are contained in a speech that Mr Cullen, who stepped down from parliament when Labour lost power in 2008, is expected to deliver to an influential conference reviewing the country’s constitution in Wellington, the capital, later this week.
The London-born politician will tell the Institute of Policy Studies think-thank conference that New Zealand should set in place legislation enabling it to abandon the monarchy when the Queen dies.
The Herald on Sunday newspaper reported that Dr Cullen’s speech notes, in which he says The Prince of Wales and his father the Duke of Edinburgh “evince some strange characteristics”.
He goes on: “But talking to plants and extremely conservative views on architecture are scarcely confined to Prince Charles.
“As for the old Duke, his insensitivity and prejudices would in our nation make him highly suitable material for a breakfast television or talkback radio host.”
The reference is to a breakfast presenter on New Zealand television who is notorious for making controversial comments.
Although the issue of a republic has been raised in the past, with both Ms Clark and John Key, the current Prime Minister, describing it as “inevitable”, Dr Cullen’s speech will be the first to contain such personal remarks about members of the royal family.
Dr Cullen said criteria for appointing a head of state which include preferment of male heirs and Anglicans are inconsistent with modern New Zealand values. >>> Paul Chapman in Wellington | Sunday, August 29, 2010