Wednesday, January 20, 2010

U.S. Presidents and Monarchy

How did U.S. Presidents Impact the Institution of Monarchy? Here is a look at a few:

George Washington: Obviously not good for monarchy as he was the leader of the rebel forces who broke away from their King and country. He also famously refused an offer to become King of the United States. However, he was not a revolutionary radical. He was a man of very aristocratic tastes and styles who viewed the presidency as something of an electoral monarchy. He would not shake hands, for instance, because he felt it was beneath the dignity of the President to do so. He also denounced the societies set up in America by revolutionary France in an effort to spread radicalism and encourage a renewal of the war with Great Britain. Washington rejected this absolutely and worked with Alexander Hamilton to normalize relations with Britain.

James Madison: One of the revered early presidents of the USA, one would be hard pressed to determine why if looked at objectively. His administration took a bad economy and made it worse, led the US into an unnecessary conflict with Great Britain in the War of 1812. His administration saw the invasion of Canada defeated, Washington DC occupied by the British and the White House and Congress burned to the ground. He also created the second national bank of the United States and started the policy of maintaining a standing army, considered necessary after the country came so close to ruin in the War of 1812. Although not involved in events in Europe, by taking the US into war against Britain in 1812 Madison was effectively aiding the cause of Napoleon and the revolutionary movement.

James Monroe: The successor of Madison, he was probably worse for the cause of monarchy in the long-run. The most important legacy of his regarding monarchy was the Monroe Doctrine which reserved the Americas as the effective domain of the United States and a republics only club. This was especially critical as it greatly aided the revolutionaries of Latin America break away from the Crown of Spain and discouraged any other European powers to come to the aid of the Spanish. It was deliberate US policy, started by Monroe, to discourage monarchy in the New World and support what would become known as ‘banana republics’ that would be reliant on the protection and direction of the United States. However, it should also be noted that Great Britain encouraged this and first recommended that the US declare itself opposed to the maintenance of the Spanish colonial empire. He also took Florida from Spain and blocked any further expansion of the Russian Empire in the Pacific west.

Zachary Taylor: A president who had little impact on monarchy though he did annoy the kingdoms of France and Portugal by pressing for reparations payments. His most ignorant foreign policy, though not actively harmful, was giving moral support to the German radicals in the Revolutions of 1848. This was true not only in that these rebellions were harmful for Europe but the rising importance of nationalism would also have ill-effects on the United States in the long-run.

Abraham Lincoln: Although he has achieved deified status in the victorious United States for his leadership during the War Between the States, Lincoln was an avowed enemy of monarchy. His administration came to the brink of war with Great Britain and the Second French Empire and he actively supported the spread of “Republican Clubs” in the US to raise money for the Mexican republican leader Benito Juarez and refused to recognize the government of Mexican Emperor Maximilian. The only monarchy the Lincoln administration was very friendly with was, oddly enough, the Russian Empire but this was only a friendship of convenience due to the antagonism between the Lincoln administration and Britain and France.

Andrew Johnson: The successor of Lincoln, Johnson continued the policies of his predecessor regarding the Mexican monarchy and was active in stopping Austria from sending help to their embattled son and in putting pressure on the French to abandon to Mexico. In the end this was not good for Mexico or the United States but Johnson was not a success on any level, hated by Americans in the south as a turncoat and hated by northern Americans for not being harsh enough in dealing with the south. He became the first president to ever be impeached.

Grover Cleveland: A mixed bag as a president regarding monarchy, Cleveland was against US intervention around the world but did not hesitate to involve himself in the affairs of others. Most significant was the recent uprising in Hawaii against the monarchy there. The US had extensive interests in the Kingdom of Hawaii and many wished to annex the islands. Cleveland, however, found that the populace did not approve of the overthrow of the Queen and he put a stop to all plans for annexation, which brought him much ridicule by those anti-monarchists who attacked him for taking the side of the Hawaiian Queen. Yet, though Cleveland opposed annexation he also opposed using US forces to restore the Queen to her throne. However, Cleveland also brought the US to the brink of war with Great Britain over something as trifling as a border dispute with Venezuela. In the end the matter was resolved by arbitration in favor of the British. This expanded the interpretation of the Monroe Doctrine to include the US not only in any intervention by a European power in the Americas but also any diplomatic disputes involving such parties.

William McKinley: Very different from his predecessor Cleveland, McKinley was an active expansionist who presided over a trumped up war with the Kingdom of Spain which saw the Spanish defeated and forced to give total independence to Cuba and to hand over to the United States Puerto Rico, Guam and the Philippines. McKinley also presided over the formal annexation of the Hawaiian Islands to the United States as a territory.

Woodrow Wilson: Monarchists in the British Empire, Belgium, and Italy etc might be inclined to look favorably on Wilson, but overall he pushed a very anti-monarchist foreign policy. A rather preachy hypocrite Wilson declared the US “to proud to fight” in World War I but did not hesitate to criticize both sides when they did something he didn’t like. He needlessly antagonized the Germans and finally took the US into war on the Allied side only after the Russian Empire had fallen (an event which was praised in Congress). He refused to deal with the monarchs of the Central Powers even when they embraced his own plan for peace. His naïve idealism resulted in a policy that angered almost everyone and the peace treaty he brought home was rejected by Congress. Although hailed as a peacemaker for his role after World War I, in truth his position was inconsistent; he was ignored by his fellow Allies and in the end looked even worse when his high sounding words did not match the disastrous situation left on the ground.

Herbert Hoover: Most known for presiding over the start of the Great Depression, Hoover did not have much to do actively with monarchy but some of his policies did so indirectly. Although very unpopular today, Hoover did prove popular in at least one monarchy when he led the effort to bring food and medical supplies to the war-torn population of Belgium during the Great War. However, as President he backed the Hoover-Stimson doctrine which refused to recognize any states formed by military force. This was done in reaction to the Japanese occupation of Manchuria but was a rather hypocritical position for the US government to take.

Franklin D. Roosevelt: It might surprise some people to know that probably no president has ever been the enemy of more monarchies than FDR. This self-proclaimed champion of liberalism was effectively president-for-life and held office as long as Hitler did in Nazi Germany. He took the US forces out of Haiti and ended Panama and Cuba being US protectorates. However, he also recognized the USSR, persistently aggravated Japan in particular. Despite US neutrality he found many ways to support the Allies against Germany and China against Japan before bring the US into the war officially after Germany invaded the Soviet Union. One might be tempted to compare FDR and Wilson, but as incompetent as Wilson was, FDR was actively worse. He was almost as obsessed with taking down the British Empire as he was the Axis. He set the US on the road that would lead to abandoning the monarchies of Eastern Europe to the Soviet Union. True, his intervention in World War II liberated and saved a number of monarchies, but many others were abandoned and he was far from being a loyal ally especially toward the British.

Harry S. Truman: President Truman did not have a huge impact as far as monarchy is concerned, most of the policies that most effected them having originated during the regime of his predecessor. Monarchy would not return to Germany and Austria, was lost in Italy and all across Eastern Europe. Monarchies such as Vietnam which had recently declared independence also were not recognized or supported because of their dealings with Japan, yet the return of French (or British as the case may be) colonial power was also not supported which left the communists as the only game in town. However, to be fair, Truman also presided over the sending of vital support to Europe in the aftermath of World War II and he did finally pledge to at least block the expansion of communism if not trying to actively destroy it.

Dwight D. Eisenhower: President Eisenhower took the political establishment somewhat by surprise when he was elected to succeed Truman and pledged to end the Korean conflict. Ike, as he was called, is probably best known today for cutting the military budget drastically and putting security in the hands of an enlarged nuclear arsenal. The most significant foreign policy of Ike regarding monarchy was his failure to support the British in the Suez Canal affair. Ike later admitted that this was his biggest mistake. He then gave support to the French and Vietnamese monarchists fighting against communism in Indochina (a good thing) but failed to provide the critical help needed at Dien Bien Phu because the British would no go along with the idea (after Suez they were feeling none too cooperative toward Ike). The result was a red victory.

Gerald Ford: The successor of the disgraced Nixon, Ford did not have a huge impact in the area of monarchy but he did preside over the US pull-out from Vietnam which assured the final victory of communism in Indochina and the loss of the monarchies in Laos and Cambodia. To be fair, the Republican Ford was hamstrung by a Democrat-controlled Congress but overall his leadership left much to be desired and left office with few friends on the right or the left.

Jimmy Carter: President Carter did not have a huge direct impact on monarchy but he was indirectly extremely harmful to the institution and a monumental failure overall. The dominating foreign policy issue of his administration was the revolution in Iran. Upon assuming office Carter brought in a whole group of new people adamantly opposed to the continued rule of the Shah. While promising support on one hand he worked against the Shah on the other and ultimately withdrew even lip-service from the traditional US support for the monarchy in Iran. When the revolution erupted he refused to help the Shah and advised him to leave the country. The result was the loss of the Iranian monarchy and, even more significantly for long-term US interests, terrorist radicals were able to seize control of an entire country for the first time.

Ronald Reagan: President Reagan had little impact on monarchy but there was an interesting development regarding the British Commonwealth island of Grenada. The government of Grenada was seized by communist revolutionaries aligned with Cuba, the Governor-General was arrested and Reagan finally responded by invading Grenada when the lives of US students were threatened. US troops defeated the communist regime, Navy SEALS rescued the Governor-General and a new government was appointed by the GG. However, the official status of Grenada as a constitutional monarchy had never actually changed and many Commonwealth leaders were outraged at Reagan for invading Grenada and destroying the communist regime.

George H. W. Bush: Again, President Bush the elder (as he sometimes now known) did not have a huge impact on monarchy but he does get a share of the credit for launching Operation Desert Storm which liberated the Persian Gulf monarchy of Kuwait from the republican dictator of Iraq Saddam Hussein. His popularity surged after the war but he still managed to anger enough of the American public after that time to be turned out of office after one term.

Bill Clinton: When thinking of President Clinton any sort of foreign policy is probably not the first thing that comes to mind, however, his administration worked behind the scenes to discourage a return to monarchy in Eastern Europe in the wake of the collapse of the Soviet Union. Clinton’s Secretary of State famously quipped that, “we don’t do kings” and crucial opportunities were lost for the restoration of monarchy in places such as Romania and Bulgaria.

George W. Bush: President "W" Bush has a mixed record when it comes to monarchy. The two dominating foreign policy issues of his two terms were the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, both ruled by regimes which had overthrown benevolent monarchies and known no prosperity since. In Iraq the chances for a restoration, even after the defeat of Saddam Hussein, were never good but in Afghanistan the former monarch, King Mohammed Zahir Shah, was widely respected. Despite the obvious advantages of a royal restoration, talked about in many quarters, the Bush administration worked behind the scenes to discourage a return to monarchy. That is a definite mark against him though the removal of Saddam Hussein in Iraq and the Taliban in Afghanistan did at least give monarchist groups the chance to compete in national politics again alongside other parties; something strictly forbidden in the past.
Barack H. Obama: Too soon to tell after only a year in office, though his denial of any special relationship between the US and Great Britain is certainly not a good sign.

12 comments:

  1. I'm surprised you did't cover Thomas Jefferson, the most Ardent Anti-Monarchist of he American Foundrs who is, above all others, responcible for American Antipathy towards Monarchy generally. He warned of making th PRedidency hereditary, and wanted endless Revlution ensure an ever-changing society. This man is also considered the Greatest Statesman to ever live, which I find odd given ho he stole Indian Lands, went personally bankrupt, and lead tot he US Govern,etns own near-failure.

    Or is he reserved for another Post?

    That said, Both Bill Clinton and George W. Bush woudl not have liked Monarhcy as an option because they where not thinkign stricty Logically. They wanted the Nations of Eastern Europe, Arabia, and the world to be little America's, withthe same form of Government.

    I have noticed this trend in America, the presumptin that the American form of Goverment s the only viable and valid form of Govrnment, and all the world shoudl embrace it. It pains them to think of another type pf Government, and Monarhcy woudl be seen as a Defeat of the ideal they fight for.

    They embrace an ideology htat teaches htem that the Marhc of Human progress is toward greater Deocracy, which they see as Freedom, and that see's Freedom Flurishing only in Republican Governance, along with Prostperity beign he CHild of Freedom, and a nAtural result of The Republic.

    There is also a less reasoned point, and hta is, America has been fed a DIet of Anti-Monarhcism for about 200 years, and even Shcoolchildren learn how Monarchies are tyrannies. THey just coudlnt handle the cfreation of a Monarhcy, as it goes agaisnt their Spirits, and thry just cna't cope with it.

    A Return to Monarhcy, even in a palce like ROmania, whilst America was overseeign its Reconstruction, wld be viewed as a Failure of the American Dream, which they saw as a Global dream.

    It wudl feel tot hem like Failure, for to them, it was never about Defeatign COmmunism but Promoting Americanism, an dhow can you do that if a Monarchy is created?

    So, despite the fact that the Reality differed form the vision of a Repulic beign evr at peace, and always fre, and growign in PRosperity, and the result usingy beign mpoverishment and doom, America woudl rpefer ot liv ein its Fantacy. If America ever created a Monarhcy, or allowed one o be Restored on her Watch, it woudl speak ill of the Foundign Myth, and the American Identity.

    Our Myth is one of struggle agaisnt impossible odds, of Poor Farmers risign up agisnt a vaslty superior force, armed only with crde weapons and a desire to be free, and castign aside the Shackles of an Oppressive King to be Fre Men in a Free Repblic! This Story is what shapes the American Conciousness, and it is this narrative that DOminates the thining of most American PResidents. Thus, a King is just not doable, especially if the King will be a force of good, for not only woudl it contrast the GReat FOunding Myth in that now America installed a King, rather than freed a people by giving them Democacy, , but woudl also cotnradict it if the peopel where free and prosperpus, thus undermining the effectiveness of the whole story, damaging it.

    If America ever allowed, or worked toards, the Restoration of a Monarhcy in a forign feild, they'd have to admit the Story of Americas Founding was not fully accurate, and that Monarchies arn't always bad, just to justify the restoration, and do we really think Americans will undrcut their Founding Fathers and Great Founding Mythos for the sake of a Few IndoCHinese Villagers or Eastern European Slavs?

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  2. Jefferson was certainly among the most vociferous republicans among the founders, though in the hypocritical way he obviously mastered, maybe not to the extent some thing. If you go to Monticello you will see among his 'hall of heroes' portraits of King Louis XVI of France and the Emperor Napoleon. One of the things I tried to do with this list is stick to what presidents actively did while they were president; there were others who could have been included that were vigorously anti-monarchy before coming to office but did not actually do much while president to harm any. Likewise, someone like George W. Bush was on very friendly terms with a number of monarchs, even while president, but this did not seem to have any bearing on his policies but were simply personal friendships.

    America has restored monarchies, mostly during the world wars, but this was usually almost incidental and was certainly not advertised as such but rather was painted with the brush of restoring democracy in opposition to dictatorships. Truman might be given credit by some for not treating Emperor Hirohito as a war criminal but I think keeping him on the throne was more the work of MacArthur rather than the White House.

    I also do not tend to be as hard as some on the US for spreading the republican gospel (given its history, founding and being a republic it should come as no surprise) especially when invited into foreign affairs by monarchies. It reminds me of the coyote that carried the scorpion across the river on his nose on the promise that it would not sting him. After crossing, the coyote was stung and when he asked why the simple reply was, "idiot, you knew I was a scorpion!"

    In most cases where the US has really thwarted monarchy there were other guilty nations (sometimes monarchies themselves) that were also active participants. However, the facts should be known both to show that a failure to support legitimate governments leads to disaster and as a warning to other governments to stop going to the US for help -strings are almost always attached and to use an old phrase, "he who drinks the king's wine must sing the king's song".

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  3. Zarove does however nail it. The rise and rise of republicanism as the general form of governance was very much presaged by the rise of American hegemony over the world. If you're number one, people want to be you, and thus they emulate you as best they can, and hence, the general preference for republics in the current day.

    However, republics have an inherent instability (regardless of whether they are democratic or not), because those who would prefer an alternate candidate (for whatever reason, but let's be nice an assume that it's because they don't actually think the candidate who won was inferior) have no recourse. There is only one spot on the podium in a republic, especially in an executive republic (like America), and those who lose are, frankly, disenfranchised.

    Parliamentary democracy tempers this by allowing you to be represented by candidates more of your ideological lines when needed (and your local member ought to listen to your concerns on local issues, regardless of his personal views). But the problem still remains there somewhat.

    Only with a monarch, chosen by lottery of birth (or the Grace of God; it means basically the same thing), can possibly command universal loyalty, as they were never elected. Though no one voted for them, no one voted against them either, and in many ways, that's the important thing.

    Of course elective monarchies have existed, but they were very much a small suffrage, with only monarchs or cardinals allowed to vote (Holy Roman Empire and Holy See respectively), and the former was hereditary in all but name (and had the advantage of, in a succession crisis, a mechanism for peacefully working out the succession).

    Certainly, however, as US influence declines, more and more will view the Chinese as the go-to template for a new national government. And frankly, that talk of a Russian restoration may bear some fruit, since we the Russians would really love to stick a pie in the face of America (and this would be a really good one-fingered salute, basically telling the Americans that they do things Russian style).

    A fascinating post. I might try an do a look at republicanism in Australia at some point (oh, how delicious the ironies and hypocrisies that I shall reveal!).

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  4. That is true and beyond the wish to emulate America (which has hardly ever worked out well even when copied almost to the letter) the US has also actively pushed -directly or indirectly- republicanism around the world. I suppose I should say though that I am more bothered by the failure of monarchies to push for monarchy as a superior system than I am by republican America pushing republics as superior. The self-defeating nature of it baffles me.

    Alot of what people call American arrogance does not especially bother me -much of it is simply pride in their own system which has worked out better than in most republics for a variety of reasons. I just wish more monarchies displayed the same pride in their own systems and traditions. That the US (a republic) promotes republicanism does not suprise me; that monarchies promote republicanism does. Every time I see the US somewhere in the world advocating a republic like itself I may not be overjoyed but I am not shocked -as has been stated republicanism must be stressed to justify the very existence of the United States. But what I ask is where are the monarchies in these international coalitions advocating for their type of system?

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  5. Before the GReat Wars, Monarchs did push Monarchy more vigerousy, but I think their are three answers to why they wouldn't now.


    1: Firsty, some Monarchs where short sighted, and all they saw was an immediate Victory against a foe of theirs.

    They knew full well that the present trend is toward Republicanism, and if a Rival monarchy was defeated in war, one could conceivable end any future Rivalry with said King by making him a simple commoner. Advocating a Republic in todays world is easy, and results in the destruction of your Rival. it also helps make the Nation itself unstable, as the Reconstruction of the Government takes time and money and causes confusion, division, and strife.


    Of course, its also making the world a smaller place for Monarchs, but men of all types seem oblivious to the long run of History.

    2: There is also the fact that Monarchs today must Placate Republican oriented Politicians in their own Parliaments. Few Monarchs today yield much real power, and t cross the Parliaments risks toppling their own position. For example, Luxembourg's Duke attempted to deny Euthanasia in his Nation recently and now they have stripped him of his power. And they can get away with it, because gosh shucks, the mans not Democratically elected and thus shouldn't have real power!

    Monarchs know this, and thus do not act against the wishes of their politicians.

    Thus, while we endlessly hear how Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth is unhappy with the State of Affairs in Britain, she does nothing to prevent its further depredation for fear that Prime Minister Brown and his band of Reformers would declare it time to let go of the past and make true progress in a modern British Republic. You know full well it would happen, even in a nation where the Monarchy is popular and part of the intrinsic fabric f the culture. Verily, t'was done to the Lords already, and not on "We the peoples" request..


    3: Then their is the Educational and cultural Zeitgiest to contend with. All Monarchs tend to be well educated, and well in society. They also tend to be woefullest Human. Academia has long embraced Republicanism, and generally leans in Favour of a Secular, Socialist Democracy. Even American Conservatives like George W. Bush where influenced by this thinking after attending Harvard, and it becomes a given fact for those who attend those schools that the modern theories of Governance and society are simply to be accepted as truth without Question.

    Many Monarchs, perhaps most these days, are simply told Republicanism is superior and their own Role a carry over form more primitive times, and accept this as a matter of course, just as they accept Democracy as a virtue in tis own right, along with mostly of the world.

    This is what causes them to support a system that is Antithetical to their own survival, in much the same way that Socialism, while in reality has failed misurabley, is still the basic form of Government in those who have completed an education. It doesn't matter that it has failed misurabley, for it works on paper and the ideology is what is taught by Tenured Professors who lean on Oak Desks, speaking with a smooth and even voice, sounding very authoritative on all matters of life.

    Never underestimate the effects of culture on the minds of those within it, for Culture and Education shape our thinking, and what is taught, more than the fact that you are taught, is often the deciding Factor.

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  6. I do not and I have not, which is why I have long said that there is not one country in the world where the loyal can be at ease; in most cases a restoration is needed, in most monarchies a sort of 'revival' is needed. Otherwise, why would the people of a monarchy continue to elect MP's blatantly disloyal to their own system of government?

    The US also has a stronger voice because it has long had a stronger military, stronger economy and so on. Does this have to be so? Personally I find it darkly amusing that the European empires, Britain especially, fell after going into debt to the US which favored an end to imperialism and now the US is deep in debt to communist China which favors the end of the US. Both should have known better as the fundamental hostility of each to the other has always been clear.

    The cultural rot must be resisted to the utmost with either long repetitive debates and arguments or sudden violence. Most today insist on the long repetitive debates and arguments (there's no accounting for taste I guess) to undue the creeping paralysis that has gripped virtually the whole world. Still, I have yet to hear any satisfactory explanation for how so much of western civilization in particular seems intent on self-destruction. There are plenty of people who live in monarchies and are proud monarchists -there just do not seem to be enough of them. Everyone should speak out, speak up, do whatever you can -hell, run for office if you can stand the stench! Then, instead of complaining about the republican influence of the US, restore to each monarchy its own national greatness so that republicans in the US will be complaining about some monarchy's inordinate amount of influence in the world. But I can't keep getting sidetracked, I'm running late with the next post. . . . . .

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  7. I think Zarove's post can be quite simply summed up. First off, republicanism (particularly democratic republicanism) has an extremely attractive superficial appeal, especially theoretically. Unfortunately for them, life is not so simple, and the proof is in the pudding. Monarchies work for a lot longer than republics.

    Second, it is ironic that we are told to question authority (generally, they mean traditional authority). Of course, questioning those who tell us to question authority (since they are usually in authority themselves) is a quick way to make enemies, since the 'anti-establishment' has become the establishment (much as they wouldn't admit it).

    When you combine the superficial appeal of republicanism with the directive to question traditional authority, the debate ends up being very much skewed against the monarchy. I actually smell a book in this.

    In point of fact, I've been thinking about how interstellar republics would work. I mean, think about it; even with faster than light travel, we're still talking about long travel times and slow communication between systems. Republics simply wouldn't be practical and stable beyond a few nearby star systems. Only a monarchy can possibly expand beyond this level, because anything else would simply fail on its logistics (can you seriously imagine the present size US functioning properly in had it been so large at Independence?). Quite ironic, considering that so much science fiction portrays future governments as democratic republics.

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  8. Sci Fi is the produt of its Authors. Sci Fi in Victorian Birtain often imagined Monarchies, as did early 20th Century Sci Fi, and he origional idea for Star Wars included many Monarchies in the Republic. (The Prequels of course made them elective, which was daft but more politically correct.)

    This is because the ultimate origin of Science Fiction is the preasen Author. If you watxh Babylon 5 you will see that the preasent culture and Governmental system we ave in the United States apparenrly existss exaclty as it is in the 23rd Century, along with the same sorts of problems, whilst Star Trek, the Origional Series invisioned a more Socialistic Utopia, which became far more obvious in TNG and the later series except, surprisingly, Voyager.

    This is because the Authors basically saw the world a certain way, with Strazyeneski thinkin that he "New Order" had replaced the Old in terms of Monsrchy andestablished itself at leats for the preasent permenantly into the future. Bu he also see's it remaining about the same. Star Trek was an intentionally utopian vision of the uture to inspire peopel to Gene Roddenberry's version of a progressive and peaceful future.

    The Authors wherent thinking logistically based on a detailed study of History, they where projecting heir current beleifs, especally political and social, onto a future to explore those ideas.

    trazynski and Roddenbery where boh Republican.

    The same is true of most authors.

    St leats we still have Princeess Lia of Alderan (not yet revealed as an elective title) and Emperor Ming of Mongo!

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  9. I found out recently that Woodrow Wilson was the only man at Versailles who wanted to see the Austro-Hungarian Empire standing. He wanted the Empire federalized but still existing. And no one except Queen Mary of Romania managed to convince him to support the dissolution of the Empire. It saddens me as I viewed highly the royal family of my country.

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  10. Really? I was actually under the impression that Wilson had a great dislike of the Habsburg Empire (I refer to J Goldberg's Liberal Fascism). Given that Imperial peace offers were rejected by the Americans (and that said peace plan was mostly the 14 Points with several modifications), I find that Goldberg's version of events as more feasible.

    It is also worthy of note that the Austro-Hungarian Empire was actually not in imminent danger of military defeat. Serbia had been crushed, Russia was out of the war, and Italy simply couldn't get through the Alps. If it wasn't broken apart by the Allies (and thus with Wilson's consent), then it would have continued today (though it may have lost territory). Oh, and it would have stopped WWII (Hitler despised the Empire he was born in).

    Incidentally, Mad Monarchist, the site 'TV Tropes' lists Bl. Charles' coronation as a Crowning Moment of Awesome, and then details how his life was awesome, and then how Otto's was awesome. Here's the link: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/CrowningMoment/WarAndPolitics

    Open the folder 'Politics', and it is the third item from the bottom.

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  11. Thanks for the tip. I had never heard that about Wilson and the Hapsburgs. Certainly the US entry into the war had nothing to do with the Austrians (or the Turks for that matter) and I suppose some might have tried to reconcile Wilson's "self-determination" jargon with the old idea of a United States of Greater Austria. Still, for a multi-ethnic empire it seems impossible, especially with the early encouragement given to the Czech nationalists in particular.

    Wilson was like an ineffective preacher -he could get everyone's hopes up with really grandiose but essentially impossible words but never managed to make anyone happy. The new borders drawn on national lines were the death of Austria and Turkey but the Allies didn't follow the idea either as their own empires were expanded and in the place of old multi-ethnic states like Austria-Hungary simply came new multi-ethnic states like Czechoslovakia and Jugoslavia. Austrians were left in Italy, Hungarians were left in Romania, Germans were left in Poland etc, etc.

    I would say that whether Wilson was well disposed toward the Hapsburgs or not would not have finally mattered. Austria-Hungary was doomed in the event of an Allied victory thanks to the secret agreements made by Britain and France with powers like Italy, Romania and Serbia. Austria-Hungary had been carved up on paper before a single US soldier ever landed in France. In fact, so much help was "purchased" by promises of this or that territory taken from Austria-Hungary, when the time came to divide up the spoils there was not enough Hapsburg land to go around.

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  12. It is as silly to castigate the US for being "anti-monarchy" as it is to castigate it for being "capitalist". As well castigate us for being "anti-Communist (not that I equate "monarchy" & "capitalism"!!)". Even tho' I am a Monarchist for various reasons - the chief being that human nature demands it, certainly responds best to it - I clearly see where the very idea of leader who is not elected, but merely born to the right, goes against the grain of a country where we believe (or, say we believe) "all men are created equal." Any establishment of a monarchy under the auspices of the US would make us look like hypocrites on the world stage. Even had "W" not squandered much of our credit & prestige in the world, we could not pull it off - not without an openly popular groundswell of support in the area where the monarchy was to have been established. And in such a case, we would not necessarily be needed.

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