Bitter Harry: Famous Grandchildren Ethics #2

Part I is here.

A London pub has announced that it will be selling a ‘Harry’s Bitter’ beer in response to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s tell-all Netflix documentary, “Harry and Meghan” as well as Prince Harry’s family dirty laundry opus, “Spare.” Well-played. For Diana and Charles’ youngest offspring is indeed Bitter Harry, and a weak and rotten Royal to boot.

Because the U.S. is in the throes of The Great Stupid, in part a hangover from the George Floyd Freakout, Harry and his gold-digger spouse Meghan are more popular here than in the UK. Some Americans just enjot seeing the Royal Family shat-upon; some are suckers for those who play the racism victim card, Meghan’s specialty (with Harry’s dog-like assistance), and some were so absurdly smitten with the late Princess Diana, herself often an unseemly publicity addict, that her sons can do no wrong in their eyes. Nonetheless, Harry’s exploitation of his family’s misplaced trust for cash and cheap celebrity is the mark of a royal asshole as well as one whose bitterness has rendered his ethics alarms useless.

What kind of person deliberately reveals—often with dark shading borne of dark agendas—private conversations and family secrets in a manner guaranteed to embarrass, insult and infuriate named relatives and stain the reputation of those who have expired? The answer is… a petty, untrustworthy person. Harry doesn’t need the money, but apparently he needs something else: revenge, probably. He evidently has adopted his late mother’s attitude toward the Royal Family, blames them for her demise, and is doing everything he and his wife can think of to cause them pain.

This is ironic, because the only reason anyone cares a twig for either Harry or his C-list actress wife is his membership in that family. Harry is the epitome of a celebrity who is famous without having done anything constructive, admirable, or praiseworthy. He doesn’t have to work; he was born with the metaphorical silver spoon, and nothing short of treason or murder could remove it—indeed, if British history is any guide, not even those things.

However, he has been relatively cut off, and his wife, at least, wants to make sure they have a bright future ahead of interviews with Jimmy Kimmel, guest spots on sitcoms and starring roles as infomercial pitch-nobles. Thus the plan is to tar King Charles, Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, Prince William and the rest as racists and creeps, even if it makes Harry and Meghan look creepy too. Creepy celebrities do quite well here.

Maureen Dowd, amusingly snarky with a drop of illumination as usual, writes,

If Meghan Markle wanted to change the world, couldn’t she do it more effectively from within the monarchy, blowing the dust off old rituals, as she did with her wedding? How could Meghan be “shocked to discover institutional racism in the very institution that created the most enduring business model for it?,” Alicia Montgomery wrote in Slate….Harry thought he’d find closure in disclosure. He will never feel the crown’s heaviness, but was his burden so unbearable that it needed multimedia unburdening? …Now that I have read “Spare,” however, these questions seem pointless. It’s like asking Orestes, “Couldn’t you just have made nice with your mother?”

I think Maureen’s Greek tragedy reference wildly over-inflates Harry and Meghan’s gravitas. I think another classic source is more on point: “The Gondoliers,” Gilbert and Sullivan’s last successful operetta, which premiered in 1889. The show features the down-and-out Duke and Duchess of Plaza-Toro, he dominated and abused by her, who make their living by serving as celebrity hosts, sponsors and spokespeople for less than lofty people and products. Gilbert, as always, was alert to the satirical material in human corruption especially among the rich and powerful. With just a few tweaks, the second act duet by the Plaza-Toros could be made to fit the Sussexes’ grubby exploits perfectly, as you will see….

DUKE

To help unhappy commoners, and add to their enjoyment,

Affords a man of noble rank congenial employment;

Of our attempts we offer you examples illustrative:The work is light, and, I may add, it’s most remunerative!

Small titles and orders

For Mayors and Recorders

I get–and they’re highly delighted–

DUCHESS

They’re highly delighted!

DUKE

M.P.’s baronetted,

Sham Colonels gazetted,

And second-rate Aldermen knighted–

DUCHESS

Yes, Aldermen knighted.

DUKE

Foundation-stone laying

I find very paying:

It adds a large sum to my makings–

DUCHESS

Large sums to his makings.

DUKE

At charity dinners

The best of speech-spinners,

I get ten per cent on the takings–

DUCHESS

One-tenth of the takings.

I present any lady

Whose conduct is shady

Or smacking of doubtful propriety–

DUKE

Doubtful propriety!

DUCHESS

When Virtue would quash her,

I take and whitewash her,

And launch her in first-rate society–

DUKE

First-rate society!

DUCHESS

I recommend acres

Of clumsy dressmakers–

Their fit and their “finishing touches”–

DUKE

Their finishing touches….

DUCHESS

A sum in addition

They pay for permission

To say that they make for the Duchess–

DUKE

They make for the Duchess!

Those pressing prevailers,

The ready-made tailors,

Quote me as their great double-barrel–

DUCHESS

Their great double-barrel–

DUKE

I allow them to do so,

Though Robinson Crusoe

Would jib at their wearing apparel–

DUCHESS

(Such wearing apparel!)

DUKE

I sit, by selection,

Upon the direction

Of several Companies bubble–

DUCHESS

All Companies bubble!

DUKE

As soon as they’re floated

I’m freely bank-noted–

I’m pretty well paid for my trouble!

DUCHESS

He’s paid for his trouble!

At middle-class party

I play at ecarte-

And I’m by no means a beginner–

DUKE

 (She’s not a beginner!)

DUCHESS

To one of my station

The remuneration–

Five guineas a night and my dinner!

DUKE

And wine with her dinner!

DUCHESS

I write letters blatant

On medicines patent–

And use any other you mustn’t–

DUKE

Believe me, you mustn’t–

DUCHESS

And vow my complexion

Derives its perfection

From somebody’s soap–which it doesn’t–

DUKE

 It certainly doesn’t!

We’re ready as witness

To any one’s fitness

To fill any place or preferment–

DUCHESS

A place or preferment.

We’re often in waiting

At junket or feting,

And sometimes attend an interment–

DUKE

We enjoy an interment!

BOTH

In short, if you’d kindle

The spark of a swindle,

Lure simpletons into your clutches–

Yes; into your clutches.

Or hoodwink a debtor,

You cannot do better

DUCHESS

Than trot out a Duke or a Duchess–

DUKE

A Duke

BOTH

Or a Duchess!

9 thoughts on “Bitter Harry: Famous Grandchildren Ethics #2

  1. I shall eagerly await the J. Marshall G&S “Duke and Dutchess” rewrite in honor of the Sussexes.

    I love people being named after localities. Maybe Harry and Megan can be re-named “The Montecitos.” Has kind of a swashbuckling overtone missing from a mundane place like a run of the mill English county.

    • Here’s the iconic speech from “Bitter Harry”:

      “I know what you’re thinking. “Does he have more bile to spill about his family, or are the Netflix thing and the book all he’s got?” Well to tell you the truth in all this excitement I’m not sure myself. But being that I have no shame and am willing to be the most despicable Royal in the last hundred years (well, after the Duke of Windsor and Prince Andrew anyway) and especially since the US. celebrity media is the most powerful in the world and can make the whole Royal Family look like the Clampetts if I give it enough dirt, you’ve gotta ask yourself one question: “Do I feel lucky?” Well, do ya, Dad?”

      • He seems intent upon bringing the house he lives in and derives his wealth from down around his ears. He must be depressed. That’s a really big self-destructive streak he’s got going there.

        Am I the only person who thinks Megan even LOOKS like Wallis Simpson?

        • Am I the only person who thinks Megan even LOOKS like Wallis Simpson?

          I have seen a photograph in which she was wearing a dress and canted hat that were very much in the style of a photograph of Mrs. Simpson.

          • Wallis Simpson was not only unattractive, I think one book described her as having a face like a shovel, but she had bad taste, typified by wearing huge pieces of jewelry on designer clothes that should have been allowed to speak for themselves. Frankly, both she and the Duke of Windsor would have made for psychological challenges for therapists. What it really boils down to in both of their cases was sloth, greed, and apathy. There is a story that not only did the Duke of Windsor display shocking bad judgment by being photographed with a certain German Chancellor that we don’t need to talk about, but Wallis had an affair with Hitler’s foreign minister, a man you folks might have heard of named Joachim von Ribbentrop, who was later deemed so bad at Nuremberg that he was one of the 10 men who were hung. Supposedly he regularly sent her bouquets of 17 roses, one for each time they had been intimate.

            So yeah, it’s going to be hard for anyone in the Royal family to top that, at least in the modern era. Elizabeth II certainly fulfilled her promise of devoting her entire life to her people’s service. George VI arguably worked himself to death getting the nation through World War II and the beginning of the dissolution of the empire. George V let the nation through World War I, the Anglo-Irish War, and any number of other issues. Edward VIII may have been a bit of a Playboy when he was Prince of Wales, but once he became king, he presided over the last era of empire and unbridled prosperity. Before that you are talking about Queen Victoria, who presided ultimately over the empire at its height, and, though beset with personal tragedy, served her nation as faithfully as her great-great granddaughter. William IV was certainly no brain trust, and George IV thought with the wrong head to the point where he did in fact start the people wondering why they were paying for the monarchy. George III blew it with the American revolution, but presided over the victory over Napoleon, when he wasn’t out of it from porphyria, which was not really his fault. George II spoke broken English, but presided over the victory in the seven Years War and the French and Indian war, and George I spoke very little English at all, as might be expected from a German King invited in by Parliament to fill the gap left at the end of the reigns of William and Mary and Queen Anne. You really have to go before that, to James II, kicked out by the so-called Glorious Revolution due to intolerant Catholicism, to find an English king who arguably turned on his own country and family. Even then, it was an issue that was part of the clash between Catholicism and Protestantism that typified 17th century Europe, with Protestantism ultimately gaining the upper hand in England and later the United Kingdom. Just as an aside, France went the other way, with Huguenot King Henri IV coming over to Catholicism and saying, “Paris is worth a Mass.”

            My point is, even as you go back through history, you would be hard pressed to find an English or British royal who turned on both house and country. You might find some who were not so skilled. You might find some who pressed claims to the throne or another throne (in the case of Edward III and Henry V) that were on shaky ground. However, Edward VIII is the only one who let a woman who was using him to advance herself get her claws into him and turn him into a complete embarrassment. In some ways, arguably, he was not as bad as Harry is now. During World War II he dutifully accepted exile as governor of the Bahamas, although he hated the post. When the war was over he and his wife faded into essentially retirement for the rest of their lives. He never sniped at his brother while he was King, nor did he snipe at Elizabeth II once she took the throne. In fact, he had a cordial meeting with Elizabeth very close to the day he died, although he did not join Elizabeth and his wife for a photo op, since he was already too sick with the cancer that was ultimately going to take his life. He also never spoke ill of either his country or the politicians who had arguably made it impossible for him to stay on the throne. He sure is the devil did not try to write a book telling his side of the story or trying to portray himself and his wife as the victims of a system that did not value love.

            Now it’s becoming increasingly obvious that Harry has been holding a grudge against the Royal family for a number of reasons for many years. He’s angry that he was the spare rather than the heir and would always be second banana to William. Order of birth can’t be helped, and, arguably, princes have more freedom and get to have more fun than kings, who bear the burden of leadership. He blames the Royal family for the death of his mother. Well, that isn’t fair. The royal family had nothing to do with the death of Diana, conspiracy theories aside. It should also be pointed out that Diana was not herself innocent in the rift that ultimately led to her and Charles divorcing. She knew from the get-go that he already cared more for Camilla then he did for her, but was marrying her because Camilla was deemed and unsuitable wife for a future king. She went ahead with the marriage anyway, knowing full well what would probably follow, or perhaps not quite grasping it, since she was barely out of her teens, and not the sharpest arrow in the quiver, having never attended University and last having worked as a teacher’s aide. She herself had at least three affairs during the pendency of this marriage, maybe more. Yet she chose to portray herself as a blameless angel who just wanted to do good things for the world. The thing is the world bought it, or at least a lot of the world bought it for a while. Had she lived, I think that eventually the world would have gotten tired of the same old story and of a former princess in her 40s, whose beauty might be fading, still trying to capitalize on the fact that she was once married to the Prince of Wales.

            Harry got lucky, he married a good looking biracial woman after racism had become the defining news issue of the times and just in time to capitalize on the George Floyd freak out and black lives matter. In a way, Meghan granted him cover for saying all kinds of outrageous things about the Royal family, especially characterizing them as a racist royal family in a racist nation. Much of the media of course ain’t that right up and didn’t even bother to ask a question. If someone married to someone with any color says that is racism, then there is racism.

            A lot of what has been said now leads me to also believe that Harry is just not that smart and just angry and vengeful. Members of the military do not boast of how many of the enemy they killed, particularly fanatical islamists. That is a good way to get a fatwa issued against you. Members of the military also don’t boast of how many they killed and almost in the next breath talk about how their brother threw them down on top of a dog bowl. You can’t be a hero in one sentence and a sensitive wimp in the next. No one with any sense insults his stepmother when his father has already told him that doing that would be a red line and there could still be consequences to crossing that red line. Whether or not Camilla tried to overplay her hand is a separate issue. Only a petty idiot with the mentality of a 14-year-old pokes fun at his brother’s appearance. I know the media made that a thing for 4 years by poking fun at Trump as the orange man, but that still doesn’t justify acting like you’re back in 7th grade.

            What I think Harry doesn’t quite grasp is that in this relationship he is the not as smart and not as ruthless one. Meghan already ditched one husband, threw him aside like trash. She was also the one who threw a bunch of his friends off the wedding invite list so that she could invite more celebrities. although she doesn’t have access to all of the royal families money, she has access to enough with Harry. The day is going to come when there is enough in there joint accounts and in their name that she is going to be able to take the kids and split, taking half of Harry’s wealth with her, since I believe California community property laws are quite favorable to her position. She isn’t interested in being a vapid actress the rest of her life, nor in being a permanent grievant. I believe she has political ambitions, and with there are plenty of spots in California to run for public office in. I don’t know if she’ll be quite positioned to run when Diane Feinstein finally gives up the ghost, since I think that’s likely to be sooner rather than later. However, she could quite easily run in a primary against a not as well-known senator. I’ve also heard that she might have her eye on the White House one day, but I think that is a pipe dream. A lot of folks thought Corey Booker was a possibility for the White House. However, his 2020 attempt for the White House fizzled and now he is almost 10 years on from being the dynamic new face as the mayor of Newark. He isn’t even the senior senator from New Jersey and really has very little juice in the Senate. We at least have the credentials and the connections to get that far. Meghan’s whole resume consists of being an actress on a not too well known show and being married to the second son of the king of England. Californians may be stupid enough and starstruck enough to vote for someone with a thin resume like that, but this entire nation is neither.

            And where will that leave Harry when she finally throws him over? Well, probably nowhere. He’s already 3 years away from the Royal family and the longer he stays away the wider the gap becomes. The more he tries to hurt and embarrass his family the wider the gap becomes still. Eventually it reaches the point of no return. I think there is a very good chance that a decade from now he could be just plain Harry Windsor, living a dreary life of dull parties and interviews few read, on his third or fourth airhead girlfriend.

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