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As Long as We Remember...

May 2, 2011

The Simple Folk

Steven R. Berryman

What do the “simple folk do,” as Robert Goulet and Richard Burton asked in the musical, “Camelot?” Seems that two-billion of us “commoners” happily basked in bloody old England’s glory days.


Yes, yes, I was among the uninvited, too, and watched the Royals on and off on my “telly” on Friday. It was great fun to gawk at the magical tradition and majesty, the pomp and circumstance; why, if it could only have been me!


I have to admit that the Brits did a splendid job of letting the world in on the fun. English-accented journalists were in their finest hour since being in America; surely the celebration of this wedding means that Britannia will rule again. Well, the haberdashers and dressmakers had had their day, anyway…


So, why do we have so many ex-patriot Brit talking-head journalists even in non-ceremonial days in America? Chris Matthews stole the line that the prep-school accent – not the Eliza Doolittle one – conferred an assumed 10 additional I.Q. points from the average viewer.


But England does not rule the waves any more, and English journalists were pushed out of the home country by escalating tax rates, hitting its middle class especially brutally during one wave several years back.


The billionaire Queen presided per the playbook of perfection, missing not one visible nod called for by protocol. But of course, I’m but a “commoner,” and would have likely missed it anyway!


One of the play-by-play hosts of the wedding covered the monarchical history, and financial wherewithal of the dynasty. Although they still collect tax from the peasants, the aristocratic Royals hold sway over billions of acres of property around the globe, worth several trillion dollars by one account.


I wonder how long the good English will put up with that, having one of the worst tax rates in all of Europe. All that, and the terrible electrical systems on their cars!


Back here in “the colony,” we Americans briefly had a Camelot of our own – but no castle, alas – during the John F. Kennedy presidency. Having the matching wife Jacqueline helped a lot, too. No thousand year dynasty was this to be, though.


To be fair, we have had a King named Martin Luther, and a Count named Basie, but I suspect that was a mere coincidence of nomenclature.


We do have a certified “Donald,” though. Maybe that can be a start. Apart from that tricky blood-line-thing, being able to walk with majesty and swill with the right people seems to be the greatest requirement to be a Royal.


So, as America seems to be in a similar position to jolly old England now – remembering the pride of past crusades – I can see Donald Trump filling a political need as a presidential candidate. Mr. Trump trumpets power, authority, and does so enthusiastically; truly without apology.


The above might resonate well with those tired of an apologist president seemingly more concerned by having a fair playing field than by winning the game. Presidents should operate in the best interests of the nation. Best in economy, strongest in currency, broadest in diplomatic clout. Americans now expect and yearn for this!


And don’t tell me that the camera-loving, folically challenged Donald Trump is not a serious candidate because he’s had a show on the telly. We once had a great president that starred in the silly film, “Bedtime for Bonzo.” No, really, just Google it!


Now it’s time for me to play with my painted lead soldiers with funny hats, and eat a slice of my “favourite” chocolate biscuit cake, perhaps with an episode of “The Avengers” in the background.


If only the nanny can find Jeeves to cut me a slice.


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