When Ronald Reagan completely subverted the principles of the Republic he swore to defend by accepting a knighthood from R Liz, the absurdity of the whole “honour’s system” was seldom clearer. Yet again we witnessed the synthesis of vulgarity and pomposity on which the whole Windsor family depends. A process ol’ Ron only experienced for a short while – bless him – before he steadfastly returned to perfecting the former.
(Even the Queen thought it had all gone a little too far this time, telling the gleaming President, brandishing his newly acquired shiny trinkets: “don’t drop them”.)
No title of nobility shall be granted by the United States: and no person holding any office of profit or trust under them, shall, without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state.
Article I, Section 9, Clause 8 of the US Constitution
Should we be surprised that someone who couldn’t read, and whose presidency existed for the sole purpose of undermining government at home as much as abroad, broke a essential clause of the Constitution?
And none of that is hyperbole, Reagan’s aides really did have a cartoonist come in to condense key briefings with a felt tip pen (and lots of pretty colours!). There was that one time when Ronny was confronted with a drawing of the States housing a titchy bomb, with, off to the right, big bad Russia with an enormous one. That, as ludicrous as it sounds, is exactly how the development of the MX missile was signed off on. A $20 billion project that was never used in the cause of freedom, being deactivated without seeing combat.
Need I go over all of those times the B-movie actor undermined, lied and gave a bad name to America’s democratic institutions? You can see a overview of what his regime got away with here.
To restore (or store?) some legitimacy to our ever-suffering royal overlords, perhaps they can try atoning for their past sin? By honouring someone who almost saved us all alot of bother, and quite nearly prevented a genocide in Guatemala? He may have failed, but he gave it a bloody good go.