The Jones boy is acting mighty peculiar with his reform ideas and should surrender his knighthood

Alf observes that Bob Jones is named – alongside Peta Mathias, CK Stead and Rob Hamill – among prominent New Zealanders who have come out in support of Green MP Keith Locke’s bill for a referendum on the monarchy.

Bringing his name into the argument does us a favour. It reminds us of the sorts of people who may well finish up as our President if we lose our marbles and scrap the monarchy.

We are a country increasingly hungry for news about the antics of celebrities rather than about the deeds and ideas that affect us as citizens. If it was put to the vote, accordingly, Her Majesty would be displaced by somebody like Jones, Paul Henry or Paul Holmes’ headline-hogging step-daughter.

President Jones doesn’t have the same ring, for Alf, as Queen Elizabeth.

Locke’s member’s bill is expected to come before parliament next month.

The Sunday Star-Times reminds us this will mean the House for the first time has a formal debate about the future of the monarchy.

Jones is reported as saying he approved of Locke’s bill because – he contends – the British monarchy is no longer appropriate in a country with such a broad range of cultures and races.

You could say the same about Britain, nowadays, when the streets of London are full of people of all shades and Harrods is owned by an Arab. So what, exactly, is the point?

But Jones goes much further than simply favouring a new constitution.

Tycoon Sir Robert Jones said it was time not only to replace the Queen as head of state with a president, but also to change the country’s name, its flag and its national anthem.

“We should do the whole lot in one king-hit,” he told the Sunday Star-Times.

Ha! He calls for a king-hit – not a president-hit – to put his potty plans into effect.

Oh, and he he says he envies the young people growing up in this New Zealand.

When he was young, the culture was overwhelmingly British and a royal tour was a great popular occasion. But attitudes had changed.

Yep. And when he was young, ours was a much more safe and law-abiding society, and Jones and his generation of young people weren’t terrifying their teachers, beating the crap out of older people, including the cops, and generally demonstrating an aptitude for drunkenness and drug-taking and a contempt for law and order.

As for Jones’ call to change the “embarrassing” anthem, Alf imagines that if he had any say in the matter, we would be lumbered with standing up to salute that dreadful song sung by the Mills Brothers – The Jones Boy.

The whole town’s talking about the Jones Boy
The Jones Boy
The Jones Boy
The whole town’s talking about the Jones Boy
He acts mighty peculiar now

Actually, he has been acting mighty peculiar for several decades.

And he would be in with a chance to become our first president, which Alf imagines is the real reason behind his support for a Greenie’s grand plan to reject everything that is good for us.

If the bugger doesn’t renounce his knighthood, the Government should take it off him.

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