by John Rubino, Dollar Collapse:
I’m listening to the audio version of George, Nicholas and Wilhelm: Three Royal Cousins and the Road to World War I, written by Miranda Carter and brilliantly narrated by Rosalyn Landor. It’s the story of some almost supernaturally dysfunctional governments blundering into a war that seems more rather than less crazy with the passage of time.
Among the many surprising facts from those days (one short century ago):
Most European kings and queens were related. Only “royals” were good enough to marry into the top strata of the aristocracy, so a relatively tiny pool of princes and princesses were traded back and forth like baseball cards. By the late 1800s Britain’s King George, Russia’s Czar Nicholas, and Germany’s Kaiser Wilhelm were all grandsons of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth. They and their families hung out together on massive yachts and 10,000 acre estates, shooting and drinking and generally behaving dickishly, as humans will when given unnatural amounts of power.
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