The Corner

All Hail the Emperor Hussein — er, Norton

Mark, I agree completely with you and John Hinderaker, that President Obama would be much more comfortable as a monarch without too many demanding duties, thus leaving him plenty of time for golf, hoops, trips to the winter palace in Hawaii, and, of course, vacations and down time.

In fact there’s something of a precedent for this. It happened in San Francisco, back in the 19th century, when an Englishman named Joshua A. Norton declared himself Norton I, Emperor of the United States and Protector of Mexico. 

Norton was as nutty as a fruitcake, but the good people of San Francisco loved him and played along with his whims and summary proclamations for more than 20 years, right up to his death in 1880, which was mourned by a crowd of 30,000. There was a lot to like. By decree, he abolished Congress, eliminated political parties, and ordered that San Francisco and Oakland be connected via a bridge. Truly, a visionary genius and a role model for the current occupant of the White House, who would finally get a job commensurate with his talents and work ethic. 

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