Magazine December 31, 2010, Issue

Tragedy of the Commons

Britain’s Prince William and his fiancee Kate Middleton pose for a photograph at St. James’s Palace in London, England, November 16, 2010. (Suzanne Plunkett/Reuters)

Nothing is more American than a humble cachet. Up to now we have owned the boast about being the first person in one’s family to go to college, but we just got sideswiped by England. In a seizure of grand mal democracy that we can never match, it was announced that Prince William is to wed commoner-than-thou Miss Kate Middleton, which will make her the first person in her family to become Queen of England.

As usual, Americans were threatened by the word “commoner” but it simply means someone without royal blood, or someone who is not a peer — i.e.,

In This Issue



Books, Arts & Manners

Politics & Policy

Salt of the Earth

On November 2, the American electorate delivered a stinging rebuke to Pres. Barack Obama and the Democrats. According to a post-election survey conducted for the Faith and Freedom Coalition by ...
Politics & Policy

Teapot Tempest

If you wanted a vivid sense of the scene in 1980s Pakistan and Afghanistan when the United States was sponsoring the mujahideen insurgency against the USSR, you could not have ...


Politics & Policy

The Week

‐ “I had a good time governing,” said Bill Clinton at the presidential press conference he took over. You don’t say . . . ‐ President Obama has not taken the ...


Anthony Burgess, the brilliant British novelist remembered for the misunderstood A Clockwork Orange, also wrote a spy novel. It was the height of the Bond era, and he couldn’t resist ...


The Latest