Ron Paul was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) yesterday, receiving his insignia from the Queen at Buckingham Palace in a ceremony known as an investiture. The award is generally considered a knighthood, though technically one has to be appointed a Knight Commander (KBE) or higher to attain that formality and use the term Sir.
Fans of Ron Paul in the colonies were ecstatic when they heard about the award. The multitudes overwhelmed Heathrow Airport over the last several days, though Gatwick held its own. Those who didn't make the trip over the pond physically still managed to crash the official website of the British Monarchy, with an average of 7 million page views per hour, well above the usual 400 or so.
There has been much gossip about why the Queen chose to bestow the MBE on a loopy American Presidential candidate from Texas, which was never really even part of the Empire. Some say the Queen took a fancy to Ron Paul because of his adherence to traditional documents such as the Constitution. Others suggest that Prince Harry beseeched the Queen due to either his fascination with the candidate's political views or perhaps a youthful crush on an older man. The latter has been quite the common problem for young royals over the past few centuries, though mustaches are usually involved. Critics, including a wanker known only as "Ethan", were upset that the story would distract from news about Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, Harry Potter, David and Posh Beckham, and the latest technology fads.
Sir Ron Paul himself said that he had difficulty at first in accepting the award. The US was founded in reaction to problems with Britain, and in particular the British monarch of the time. Since he reveres the Constitution and the intent of the founders of his country, he was concerned that acceptance of the MBE might offend those principles. In the end he decided that nearly 200 years of peace was sufficient to overcome those concerns, and he accepted the honor happily. He did also express concern that some might confuse him with Sir Paul McCartney, as both might be referred to as "Sir Paul", are about the same age, and have hordes of fanatical and irrational followers.