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Have and Have Yacht

There was a bit of a kerfuffle across the pond recently when (as my colleague Alyssa Haak noted a few weeks back) British Education Minister Michael Gove reportedly proposed that the recession-stricken country build Queen Elizabeth II a brand-new $90 million megayacht to celebrate her 60th anniversary on the throne.

Her previous yacht Britannia was wrested from the royal family and turned into a tourist attraction by Tony Blair's newly instated Labour Party in a show of populism in 1997. Gove initially received a thrashing from blogs, press, and political opponents for suggesting the state pay for such an extravagance for one of the world's richest women.

However for reasons unclear—though perhaps easily guessable—it appears Mr. Gove's political detractors overlooked the part of his proposal that suggested the yacht be paid for by private donations and used partially as a training vessel by the Royal Navy.

Regardless, the queen remains yachtless, the first reigning British monarch since the mid-17th century to endure such hardship, and there are currently no known plans for a royal beyachting.

It's worth pointing out the irony that the figurehead of a nation so historically intertwined with nautical dominance be without a yacht of her own. The moral of the story I suppose is "Long live the Queen! (Just not on a boat.)"