I WAS lying awake in bed the other night.
I had something on my mind.
It wasn’t really something that concerns me an awful lot. It wasn’t something that impacts on my life one way or the other.
It was just a question that popped into my head.
And it was this.
What is the point of the Queen?
Seriously, what purpose does she serve? What use is Prince Charles? Why do people bow in front of Princess Anne? What do they all actually do, apart from wave at people?
And why do they dress up in daft outfits?
Why is Elizabeth Saxe-Coburg the Queen of England in the first place (The family name was changed to Windsor in 1917 because Saxe-Coburg didn’t seem to be an appropriate name for a family ruling a country which was at war with Germany.)
What is the point of any royal family come to that?
Liz Saxe-Coburg-Windsor is not only queen of England, people in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Jamaica, Barbados, the Bahamas, Grenada, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Tuvalu, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Antigua and Barbuda, Belize, and Saint Kitts and Nevis, are also expected to revere her as their monarch.
God knows how many castles and estates she has.
Balmoral, where the British royal family goes occasionally to shoot small and large animals, is an astonishing 250 square kilometres of private estate.
Of course, she can afford it. Some say she’s worth £10 billion. Others put it as low as £500 million.
Which begs the question as to why the British taxpayer stumps up more than £30 million a year in Civil List payments and other handouts.
She’s a big tourist attraction, people say.
So is the guy in the Mickey Mouse outfit at Disneyworld. And I think you’ll find that he doesn’t get £30 million a year, doesn’t own a 250 square kilometre estates, doesn’t get involved in seedy scandals and doesn’t expect people to bow when he enters a room.
It’s a desperate pity that people don’t research the history of their royal families.
With the possible exception of Monaco, they would find such histories dripping in the blood of ordinary people.
Royal families killed their peasants for pleasure over the centuries. (Nowadays, they limit their killing for pleasure to small animals like foxes and pheasant and large animals like deer.)
Royal families were, universally, cruel.
Generally speaking, royal families weren’t given their thrones by a grateful populace, they simply took them. Stole them. Killed people to get them.
What use are royal families today?
Well, you couldn’t for a minute suggest the British version sets anything like a good example. Affairs, divorces, drunken escapades, inappropriate comments (largely from the big Greek chap who is also paid vast sums to be a Big Greek chap) and all around bad behaviour.
Male British royals seem never to have been able to keep it in their trousers. Edward VII wasn’t the first to have a bevy of hookers - they probably called them something posh like ‘concubines’ back then - at his beck and call.
The females all seem just a little on the weird side of normal. What mother - other than Liz Saxe-Coburg-Windsor - would greet her children with a handshake, not having seen them for months, having been away looking at her peasants in other countries?
This is, of course, why Diana never fit it. She was so normal, she not only unsettled the Saxe-Coburg-Windsors and their Greek pal, her presence made it patently obvious that they were all, largely, off their collective trolleys.
All this was going through my mind as I lay there staring at the ceiling.
Their spongers, I thought to myself.
They’re al barmy, I said to myself.
They’re a complete waste of space, I told myself.
They are clowns. Expensive clowns.
Think what else could be done with the money they get? Think how many homeless people could be housed in Windsor Castle (from where they stole their name) or Clarence House or any of their other vast mansions.
So why doesn’t Britain just turf them out, give them one estate and a couple of mill, turn Buck House into Disneyland Britain and hire a guy to dress up in a Mickey Mouse outfit to entertain the tourists?
Why doesn’t Britain become fully democratic?
Sadly, I think I know the answer to that.
Democracy gives you the likes of Blair and Bush and Sarkozy and, in our case, Bertie Ahern who has a rare form of Alzheimer's which only makes him forget anything to do with large sums of money.
Still, it’s better than having Phil the Greek gobbling up all your tax bucks.