What do you do when your head of state has no more sense than God gave an umbrella stand?
I’ve been reading, in Thomas Costain’s The Three Edwards, the frustratingly shameful history of Edward II, the biggest blithering idiot ever to rule Britain, which he did, sort of, from 1307 to 1327, when his barons finally took away his throne and then killed him in a singularly unpleasant way. For twenty years this guy did nothing but make the same bonehead mistakes over and over again, some of which were exceedingly harmful to his country.
In this we see an acute problem in politics that recurs throughout history. Even today there are more than a few countries that haven’t found a solution to this problem. At least in America a president can only serve for eight years, and then he’s gone. We survived Jimmy Carter. We even survived Obama.
Edward’s favorite idiocy was to select some other fool as a favorite, load him with honors and riches, allow him to get away with blatant capers that would have been beneath the dignity of a court jester, disrupt the government, waste money, and eventually push the nobles and the general public to such a point of sheer exasperation that their only remedy was to grab the guy and kill him. And after twenty years of this, they finally did the same to the king.
Yes, it would have been worse had Edward been not only a prize chowderhead, but also a malicious tyrant a la Pol Pot, Hugo Chavez, and never mind listing all the rest of them, it would take all day. And we see from history that, once you’ve got a real putz in the driver’s seat, it’s not so easy to get rid of him.
We should be thankful, very thankful, that our own country was founded by men who knew history and tried their utmost not to repeat its worst mistakes, and who blessed us with laws that have, so far, ensured a peaceful and orderly transition from one presidential administration to the next–a blessing which Democrats seem eager to revoke.
It took England some 700 years to learn this lesson. Pray we in America never have to re-learn it.