“Companions of Honour” [The order consists of the Sovereign plus no more than 65 members. Additionally, foreigners from outside the realms may be added as honorary members. Membership confers no title or precedence, but those inducted into the single-class order are entitled to use the post-nominal letters CH].
A couple of years ago, there was a blog published here, prompted by the then just released New Year honours list, which pointed out some of the deficiencies of the modern-day operation of a dysfunctional and unsatisfactory historically flawed system, orchestrated by the current political masters of the day – so it always sucks [The British ‘Honours System’ – does it stink?].
Well, the NEW 2017 list, with some 12 hundred people, was announced last weekend, but did it give us any respite, any hope, do you think? Of course NOT, eh? The worst thing about it all is though that our renowned Queen’s good name is dragged into the gutter by it all, don’t you think? After all, she has no say in the list whatsoever (just has to help present awards), as the only award gifted directly by her is the Royal Victorian Order (RVO), for distinguished personal service to the Monarch. [Only about sixty people currently hold that Order].
Most of those so ‘honoured’ in this New Year honours list are again undeserving flunkies, self-serving morons, or political cronies, and their names on the list simply tarnish the substantial achievements and reputations of the deserving few, who have actually given outstanding service to the community and the Nation, or exceptionally have helped others for no expected reward – people who devoted their lives to truly worthy causes, specifically like Birmingham’s Marcia Shakespeare who has battled for nearly fifteen years to bring some sense of decency into the minds of the young villainous gun-minded fraternity, following the drive by shooting murder of her innocent bystander teenage daughter.
However, at a different level of service, most of us will be gratified and pleased to see that at long last the comedian Ken Dodd of Knotty Ash (a REAL place!) has been given a knighthood. Our Doddy is an icon of the entertainment business – a jewel in the crown one might say at this auspicious time, eh? Not only has he spent his life on a personal mission to bring laughter & happiness into people’s lives, but he has also been an inspiring role model to many generations of comics – none of who can ever match his brilliance, timing, drive, determination, or sheer stage stamina, can they? Not only is he the best stand-up comic we have ever seen, but he is amongst other things an accomplished singer to boot – unbelievably, even now at nearly 90? [In the 1960/80s he even had a number 1 single and some 20 songs in the top 20].
Now, although you may know that he did get an OBE some 35 years ago, but you might still wonder just why he hasn’t received this latest major public recognition before now, eh? Well, he fell foul of the Taxman, didn’t he? Yep, he was accused of tax evasion, but then he ‘got off’ at trial, and the Establishment couldn’t readily forgive that could they – made fools of by the peoples fool, they would have been easier on him if he had been actually convicted, eh?
[Previous blogs published here in 2014 (when he was still doing forty shows in the year covering the North, South, East, West, IoW, and Wales) were ‘The Best Ever British Comic – without doubt KEN DODD!’, and a follow-up ‘The Best Ever British Comic – without doubt KEN DODD and certainly TOO Good to Miss!’].
Many of those being honoured in the name of the Queen Elizabeth II, turned out to be ‘professional’ sports performers and in particular those medal ‘winners’ in last year’s Rio Olympics (those who were just as committed, trained just as hard, tried just as competitively, but didn’t actually win, seem to have been overlooked – what does that tell you, eh?). Now, while one doesn’t want to deny the level of the achievements of such people, one nevertheless has to ask if their greatest personal success in achieving their goal of a medal at a World Olympics wasn’t even greater than any babble could be – it would certainly have enhanced their earning power at all future appearances fees around the World for the next few years at least, however well their subsequent form was, eh?
Many people on the list were those either in positions of power, or public view, and most of them were being paid very well to do what they enjoyed and did with their undoubted talents while they have led a gratifying life, so someway it doesn’t seem right for them to be singled out, does it?
Amongst the more unacceptable honours winners was of course, as always, senior civil servants (for example Mark Lowcock, earning £165,000-a-year for dishing-out substantial Foreign Aid), plus politicians (both known and obscure), as well as the likes of major party fund donors (like say with a million pounds Tory David Ord), who have as always managed to creep in by the backdoor, or personal contacts like Dominic Johnson, apparently for giving a Chelsea house refuge to ex-PM David Cameron and his family on their sudden departure from Downing Street.
Some well deserving people actually turn-down the offer of one of these gongs, either because they feel their acceptance wouldn’t be appropriate, or they totally disagree with the system itself – there are of course also some ‘less-deserving’ clowns who refuse an honour because it is not high enough up the scale to match their egoistic opinion of themselves, eh?
One person who turned down a certainly well-deserved honour this time, is the man who headed-up the Hillsborough Independent Panel’s research team which exposed the wrong-doings and cover-ups of those involved in the disastrous crowd crush that unlawfully killed 96 men, women, and children, back in 1989. Yes, that man is Phil Scraton, an academic criminologist, who was the main author of their report that helped fully expose the falsehoods in the conveyed circumstances and aftermath of the Football Stadium catastrophe, but that was after nigh on 15 years of constant struggle by survivors and bereaved alike, to dam the torrential sea of Establishment lies that sought to engulfed them (and had thwarted them despite a succession of legal inquiries since the calamity happened).
Furthermore, Scraton and his family were even anomalously threatened, yet he turned down this honour offered him because he felt that he could not accept it from an establishment that had ignored and failed those who had had to fight, tooth and nail, a courageous and unrelenting campaign for justice for so many many years.
Then, we conversely have those who have eagerly sought and have taken an unwarranted honour, like rich girl Victoria Beckham, when the population of this Country are incredulous about it even being offered her – she who might well indeed have played a major role in promoting Brand Beckham together with their fortunes and her personal image in the US, but has done nothing warranting an award here, surely?
The truth of the matter about our ‘unfair’ honours system is that not only are the totally wrong people selected by it, but it does a lot more to divide our society rather than to help cohere it, don’t you think? As well as bringing the Country into disrepute by its harking back to the days of the British Empire which we have much to be ashamed of about our actions and behaviour and that negates what we have to be proud of, doesn’t it
The whole honours system is one of hereditary privilege and rank, so it is simply an establishment club governed and run by the elite, that is regularly frequented by villains, rogues, scoundrels, scum and cretins, isn’t it? Who would want to be in a club that had included them?
[Identified previously here before: child abuser Sir Jimmy Savile; jailed for tax fraud jockey Lester Piggott; Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceaucescu; spy & traitor Anthony Blunt previously of MI5; predatory child abuser Rolf Harris; racing driver Lewis Hamilton departed from the UK to avoid paying taxes ;Zimbabwean dictatorial President and abuser of human rights Robert Mugabe; former world boxing champion Naseem Hamed jailed for causing major injuries to another car driver; convicted of colossal shares fiddles Jack Lyons of the Guinness Four; Italy’s Fascist leader Benito Mussolini; former banker boss Fred Goodwin who nearly collapsed the RBS and cost Britain a fortune]
And also, politicians like; 2013 Chris Huhne jailed for perverting the course of justice [his wife accomplish stripped of her honours]; 2011 Lord Hanningfield jailed for fraudulently claiming parliamentary expenses; 2011 David Chaytor jailed for fraudulently claiming expenses; 2011 Lord Taylor jailed for falsely claiming expenses; 2011 Elliot Morley jailed for falsely claiming expenses; 2011 Jim Devine sentenced for falsely claiming expenses; 2011 Eric Illsley jailed for fraudulent expenses; 2001 Jeffrey Archer jailed for perjury and perverting the course of justice; 1999 Jonathan Aitken an ex-cabinet minister jailed for perjury and perverting the course of justice; 1999 Neil Hamilton ex-cabinet minister deemed liar, cheat, and taker of cash for questions; 1976 John Stonehouse government minister jailed for forgery and conspiracy to commit insurance fraud.
Or others like: Philip Green destroyer of BHS; James Crosby caused collapse of HBOS bank; Fred Goodwin caused partial collapse of RBS bank; Jean Else supposed super-head guilty of misconduct].
[Dadman007 wishes to reassure all and sundry that personally he has not turned down any of the many honours available however lowly – those of course which includes CH, Knight/Dame, CBE, OBE, MBE, BEM, Overseas Territories Police and Fire Service Medals, George Cross (for acts of heroism and courage in extreme danger), George Medal (for acts of great bravery), Queen’s Gallantry Medal (for special acts of bravery), Queen’s Commendation for Bravery and Queen’s Commendation for Bravery in the Air (for risk to life) – nor as far as he knows ever been nominated, so just once again in 2017 he has been well overlooked – despite his considerable contribution and efforts to blogging, eh?]