Are you a roundhead? or a cavalier?

There’s two ways of thought in this ever developing ideological milieu. When it comes to the organisation of people; there are crucial discussions to be had as to how it should be done.

The English civil war was a bloody struggle over the supremacy of the form of governance of a nation of people. In 1642 the English parliamentarians (‘Roundheads‘) pursued the cause for bringing an end to the arbitrary abuses of power of the Monarch. On the opposite isle, the royalists fought for what they saw as the divine right of kings, and the incorruptibility of a person who answers to no-one.

Long before the English civil war, the peoples of Britain had become inheritors of many political and legal concepts from the Roman empire, which at its philosophical foundations was to be oriented as a republic. In the youth of the old republic, the plebes were successful in demanding fundamental legal rights from the patrician class by refusing to defend Rome against invaders in its hour of need unless their demands were met. This event lead to the codification of the laws of the twelve tables. Although a person today might glaze over these details with a bored attitude, this event struck a significant change to the trajectory of our civilisation.

The concept that not only should all laws be written down was a powerful one. No more would they be orally transmitted through a string of unaccountable Chinese whispers (leading to you being stitched up in a court-room for breaking a law that only existed in the mind of the wealthy and self-serving classes). Civilisation was now was imputed with justice. Not only was it the case that if all men knew the law, all men could be held accountable to it, the fundamental precept was set in motion here for all future generations; those in power, who exercise the abuse of the powers enabled to them by their position – can be restrained by the efforts of the masses.

Magna Carta was that very excersise, in June 1215, the arbitrary abuses of power of the Monarch had gone too far, the Barons and the people of England thereby restrained, with force of arms, the monarch and set about codifying laws which he must respect, if he is to remain in his position. It set in place, accountable leadership, and the basic rights of men who constitute the body and membership of the nation.

NO Freeman shall be taken or imprisoned, or be disseised of his Freehold, or Liberties, or free Customs, or be outlawed, or exiled, or any other wise destroyed; nor will We not pass upon him, nor condemn him, but by lawful judgment of his Peers, or by the Law of the land. We will sell to no man, we will not deny or defer to any man either Justice or Right. (XXIX)

Looking back to 1642 the English ‘Roundheads‘ had to take up arms to reign in King Charles II who had abused his position in authority to subvert justice and the principles upon which the Charter of Liberties (Magna Carta) set out to achieve. Most of the Parliamentarian roundheads who fought Charles’ cavalier royalist forces did not abolish leadership – the roundheads demanded a Monarch who respected the law, and the independence of the judiciary to apply that law. The roundheads demanded that new law and taxes be assented to by the parliament, which was constituted of the representatives of the citizens of the nation.

Parliamentary assent to laws is a vexed issue, as a good King’s laws may be struck down by a bad people (as the cavaliers will argue), or a bad King’s laws may be struck down by a good people (as the roundheads will argue). In a representative, parliamentary democracy – the law is only as good as its people – and this is the iron law to which we now in Australia, generally, are a victim to. (That said; the full-blooded, legitimate monarchs over the commonwealth now are just about as morally depraved as our parliamentarians.)

How does this relate to contemporary Nationalism you might ask, and if you don’t – you’ve already figured it out. When it comes to the organisation of people, in a nationalist community, there must be a conscious decision made: When a king arises, shall he be restained?

When you, as a contributor to a nationalist organisation, place your blood, sweat and tears into something, facing the risks that come with organising – Shall you be subject to the unjust excersize of arbitrary power by a so-called natural leader? Or shall you be satisfied with the judgement of your peers, by the law of the land as once our forebears demanded by the force of arms.

When decisions are to be made on direction, what is to be done and why, shall it be done by the natural leader? or should it be done by a body of representatives that have been entrusted to the task by the vote of all the members. Or even on issues of a more significant scale, does not the membership who has worked so earnestly, have the natural entitlement to vote on a policy direction?

Leadership is something that cannot be cultivated in the organisation when there is no maintenance of the rights of members, In the cult of personality, can an underling grow into a leader when he must second-guess everything he does against the judgement of the king?

As the ANA looks to its National governing body next weekend – Consider this: Are you a roundhead who believes in an organisational justice and longevity, or are you a Cavalier, who believes in the unfettered authority of a popular figure?

M. K. Grant
Canberra Governor,
April 2023.