Give a guy a week in the United Kingdom and he turns into a monarchist – at least an Elizabeth II monarchist. After listening to all the supposedly democratically elected officials of the right and left in this country rattle on about the Brexit, scheming and backbiting in a junior league “Night of the Long Knives” for any and all political advantage, only the 90-year-old queen seemed to make any sense or have any grace.
The Queen has urged Britain’s political leaders to calm down in the wake of the chaos triggered by the Brexit vote and told MSPs [Members of the Scottish Parliament] they should feel “hope and optimism” about the next five years.
The monarch used her address at the opening of the fifth session of the Scottish Parliament to recommend to the UK’s political class that they allow “room for quiet thinking and contemplation” before they decide their next move.
Alluding to the political economic turmoil that has enveloped the country since the vote to Leave the European Union, she said that Britons “live and work in an increasingly complex and demanding world” with events and developments occurring at “remarkable speed”.
Hello, an actual grown-up’s in the house! Well, those of us who know our history even a little bit know that Elizabeth has a background of grace under pressure from World War II when she behaved admirably under the worst conditions, risking her own life with her citizens.
In fact, she’s miles more impressive in almost every way than our royals, the Clintons, whom we have gotten to see in action, once again, ad tedium, ad nauseam, over the last few days. And, yes, they are royals – or might as well be – because they have done little or nothing to achieve their positions and still less once they had them.
Because of the sad nature of human psychology, we too often look for this royalist charisma in our leaders, making what we get almost as much of a crapshoot in a democracy as it is in a monarchy. And sometimes the conventional monarchy turns out a lot better than our pseudo-monarchies of Clintons and Bushes.
For example, compare Elizabeth’s mature post-Brexit behavior in front of the Scottish Parliament with Bill Clinton’s sleazy semi-perp walk from his plane to Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s at the Phoenix airport. We all know what he was up to, trying to get special treatment for his wife Queen Hillary, to put her above the laws that would affect a common citizen.
Our Bill – following in the tradition of the divine right of kings and subverting the Magna Carta – chose to flaunt the justice system because, well, he was King Bill and could do as he wishes. We don’t know – and perhaps will never know — whether Queen Hillary knew of his intentions and encouraged him, but only a fool would bet against it.
Being in England and having visited Westminster Abbey for the first time in roughly forty years made me think about that Magna Carta and what an immense achievement that was back in 1215, those barons standing up for the beginnings of equality before the law against King John, who, legend has it, wasn’t a particularly pleasant or generous fellow.
When Hillary decided she wanted to have all her emails on a private, personal server, she was, in a very real sense, reversing 1215. One of the more repellent lies she has told is likening her behavior to previous secretaries of State who, she says, did the same thing. They did nothing of the kind. They were simply lazy, very occasionally using their personal accounts for State Department business. Queen Hillary was not just being sloppy. She purposefully installed a private server of her own for all her emails, deliberately doing the country’s business in secret. And that only touches the surface of what she did. A decent modern king or queen would never do anything of the kind.
So Bill and Hillary are what we can call bad royalty, exploiting their position for power and their own greedy and selfish ends. They don’t deserve to kiss the shoes of the current monarch of the UK.
Long live Elizabeth II.
Roger L. Simon is a prize-winning novelist, Academy Award-nominated screenwriter and co-founder of PJ Media. His new book—I Know Best: How Moral Narcissism Is Destroying Our Republic, If It Hasn’t Already—is just published by Encounter Books June 14, 2016.