The Nation Formerly Known As Great Britain

Wow. With all the history and greatness to celebrate, we got the industrial revolution and a celebration of nationalized healthcare?

They might as well of had a celebration of bad teeth.

An episode of Downton Abbey has more action than that opening ceremony.

Well, now we know why Britain lost her empire.

And did anyone see those giant children's book characters? Is it me or did it seem that L.A. Eucharistic conference lent the Olympics their liturgical puppets?

They put on a billion dollar spectacle and the best part by far was Mr. Bean making silly faces.

Somebody suggested that through the ceremonies, Britain was sending a stern message to the world. Don't mess with Britain or we will bore you death.


  1. Even the Queen did not seem entertained, as not once was she shown with a smile.

  2. I don't know what was worse: the performance itself or the "we have to pretend this show isn't terrible" commentating of Meredith Viera and Matt Lauer.

  3. Maybe they should consider going by Mediocre Britain.

  4. Britain in 1948 would not have surrendered cravenly to the anti-Semitism of the International Olympic Commission. The racism shown against Israeli athletes in the last week is a jackboot-step back to 1936. I am ashamed that President Obama and Governor Romney have been silent in the matter.

    God bless Bob Costas for standing up for civilization. He will punished, of course.

  5. I haven't understood anything that has been put forth by the London Olympics thus far... its all bizarre and makes zero sense. What happened to this once great nation????

  6. Loved your analysis, Matt.

    Yes, Britain is leading the charge to end the glory of Western Civilization.

    Their athletes appeared a bunch of hooligans (just their demeanor which was declasse) in those tacky, tacky, tacky uniforms. The queen looked grey and dour and the Adoration of the National Health Service was of course a wink to Obama-Nation.

    Did you notice the hirsute bobbing head of the Archbishop of Canerbury behind the Queen, head of the C.O.E? Heretics, all!

  7. Sad, sad interpretation of a great opening ceremony. As a devout Catholic and a Brit, I love our NHS and though the opening ceremony was awesome.

  8. "They might as well of had a celebration of bad teeth."

    We may no longer rule 1/3 of the globe, but we still get annoyed when our American cousins abuse the language. It's "may as well HAVE had".

    You're welcome!

  9. Therese,

    I want to love Britain, and there is much natural and man-made beauty there, and you have produced great men and women in St. Thomas More, Margaret of Clitherow, Robert Southwell, Shakespear, Byron, Keats, Austin, Dickens, etc, all the awesome Cathedrals, architecture, language, poetry, etc. But you are squandering it all. Your latter day culture is a cesspool, and we are not far behind!

  10. Redfeather

    Thanks for the kind comments. I still disagree with the article however and will always love our NHS and was highly amused by the opening ceremony!

  11. C'mon, Pat, you have to admit that the Queen sequence was kind of cool.

    I also liked forging of the Olympic rings.

  12. Theresa,

    Does your NHS offer abortion on demand. If it does, and you love it, I wonder about you.

  13. Redfeather

    Oh dear - I didn't mean it like that!

    Of course I loathe abortion and would love to see an abortion free NHS. The article though seemed to refer to nationalized healthcare as a general concept - which I don't have a problem with.

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  15. Considering that there are NHS atrocity stories in the news every week, it was fitting that Mike Oldfield accompanied that segment with some of his "Tubular Bells" music made famous by the movie "The Exorcist".

    The depiction of the industrial era was awful Marxist history, as if history consisted of ecomonic history, period. It came complete with groups representing struggling workers and cigar-chomping Victorian bosses. Historical individuals were absent: the action was all about classes of people.

    No wonder it started with a throng of tub-thumpers: I expected Chumbawumba to show up ad sing for the class struggle.

    More entertaining, though, would have been a set by Spinal Tap, with a proper-sized Stonehenge.

    1. PS: in another Exorcist touch, some of the NHS beds even levitated!

  16. Yeah, the NHS bit did seem a bit like a horror movie. I liked the bouncing kids, though. I think some people here have forgotten that an Olympics opening ceremony is an introduction to a glorified sports competition, not the sum of all national achievements and aspirations.

    Historical individuals were absent: the action was all about classes of people.

    I could have sworn that Brunel was central to the segment. Perhaps I imagined it.

  17. It was a political show, not one about the Olympics or sports. The theme was "Revolutions." James Bond? Bean? The factor I would lament is than today, Pop Culture is considered the Highest Culture. It is inescapable. Factor in all the adds now with Olympic athletes, and the event becomes calculated.

  18. I thought the show was so-so. I think some comments I've seen on the web just don't recognise the fact that in the UK whenever we "glory" in something, it's often done in a tongue in cheek manner, or at least it can be interpreted that way. Even the staunchest NHS supporter would admit its problems.

    But it can never be called anything other than "Great" Britain, as that's the name of the island. It is called Great because there is also Brittany, which is the "little" Britain. Sorry about the rant, but as a Scot it drives me crazy whenever there is even a slight misunderstanding of the differences between UK, Great Britain and (most of all) England.

  19. Pattymelt, I don't know that I have seen the queen smile more recently than in the photos from her coronation. Her mother, yes, she was a very happy old gal; Elizabeth, not so much.

  20. @_

    "We may no longer rule 1/3 of the globe, but we still get annoyed when our American cousins abuse the language. It's "may as well HAVE had".

    You're welcome!"

    Well you are not thanked. Take your linguistic elitism elsewhere.

    Language changes. Get over it. I doubt you recite the Lord's Prayer in Chaucer's dialect of English. Every region is king of their own language and dialect (note my perfectly non-mechanical and normal use of singular 'their').

    "Might as well" is the way most Americans say it, and it is just as valid as "may as well." How do you get about arguing that one is incorrect? Where is the logic there?

    Also, it's easy to see how someone would mistakenly transcribe the syllable [^v] (that's a "uh" sound and a "v" sound) as "of," seeing as how they sound EXACTLY THE SAME. I think we can cut people a little slack for not realizing that they're actually contracting the word "have".

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  22. Daniel Weller,

    "Take your linguistic elitism elsewhere." Speak for yourself. "_" is correct, and I enjoyed his or her comment made on this public comment page.

  23. I think the Queen doesn't smile with her mouth, but she certainly twinkles with her eyes, in that amused British style.

    The corgis do all the happy-faced smiling for her.

  24. The Queen is a nice lady. Period. She is heir to a bastion of heresy, she basks in it, she celebrates it. There is no historical, intellectual or theological curiosity forthcoming from her or her heirs or her archbishop regarding the shocking manner in which Great Britain severed all ties with the One True Faith and contributed to the Broken Body of Christ. The fawning on this site, over this woman who perpetuates this travesty, is shameful. St. Margaret Clitherow, pray for us. St. Robert Southwell, pray for us. St. Edmund Campion pray for us.

  25. Instead of cooing over corgis, why don't you meditate on the suffering of the aforementioned martyrs for the One True Faith? Poor Margaret of Clitherow, the Pearl of York, was laid upon a beam and her four extremities were each bound to a horse each of which proceeded to rip her apart. Her crime? Harboring Catholic priests and having Holy Mass said in her home.

  26. Oh, I forgot, if you're British you're so veddy, veddy PC. To view the monarchy with anything less than adulation just wouldn't do now would it?

    You must take the long view back--a great injustice was done, first to Catherine of Aragon, then to Henry's murdered wives, then to his friends and all of Britian. There is absolutely NOTHING to celebrate in the perpetuation of these errors.

  27. @Unknown:
    How exactly is it linguistic elitism to defend non-standard forms?* Elitism is pretending to be better than others. I'm doing just the opposite. I'm saying that "may as well" and "might as well" are equally sensible ways of saying THE EXACT SAME THING.

    In your mind it is elitist to point out elitism and denounce it? Then this is probably the most anti-catholic blog I've ever read, by your standards.

    *(and in this case, I would hardly call saying "May as well" non-standard, seeing as how millions of Americans say it.

  28. Redfeather, first off, you are aware that Elizabeth II's family got power by murdering the family that did all those things? Please tell me you know the difference between Hanover, Stuart, and Tudor.

    Second off, directing this degree of vitriol at the House of Windsor, in a discussion of modern Britain, is like saying something about the wild wickedness of the Ukrainian Cossacks while the Bolsheviks are running roughshod over the Motherland.


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