Monday, December 1, 2008

His Majesty, the President

Why Americans Are Reluctant to Admit Their Presidents Are Kings

indeed, it is one of the great ironies of America that the Founding Fathers invested more power in the presidency than ever exercised by George III, a monarch described as a ‘tyrant’ in the Declaration of Independence. The Stadholder of the Netherlands, William V, was explicit. He wrote to John Adams, ‘Sir, you have given yourselves a king under the title of president’.

When our republic was founded, there was a great deal of debate over things like how to address the president; such things as "Your Excellent Highness" [or something similar] were suggested before they finally settled on "Mr. President". And when the White House was first being built, it was referred to as "the President's Palace".

Incidentally, the page has a link to a book called Just How Stupid Are We? Facing the Truth About the American Voter. I'm not familiar with the book, so I don't know if it's just tired America-bashing or if it actually deals with the folly of voting, but a folly it is. Nor do I imagine that voters in other countries are any wiser; indeed, the evidence is to the contrary.

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