I can hear the sound of teeth gnashing all the way from Wellington and Sydney, where young royals are leaving old republicans (small "r") choking in their fairy dust.
In the modern era, a royal roadshow should be an expensive, pointless anachronism, especially to American eyes. But Prince William, Duchess Kate and baby Prince George are busy shredding that assumption, proving royal relevance on their so-far boffo tour of Down Under.
I wonder if the Scots are hearing it in Edinburgh.
Nearly two weeks into their three-week tour, the daily coverage and top-of-Twitter treatment of the royals' every move underscores the wisdom of William's choice of wife and future queen.
Graceful, gorgeous and genuine, Catherine Duchess of Cambridge has been exposed to her future subjects in a way no predecessor - not even the sainted Princess Diana - has ever been shown, thanks to live-streaming and real-time social media. Not only is she the best thing that's happened to the royals in decades, she's helping to save the entire royal enterprise from terminal irrelevance.
Crotchety republicans, who'd chuck the monarchy in New Zealand and Australia with nary a backward glance, and independent-minded Scots, who want to escape the clutches of Great Britain, must be exasperated at the pictures beaming and tweeting out of New Zealand and Australia for the last 11 days.
Will was raised royal; Kate was not. But she's been flawless in dress and manner, engaged and seemingly delighted to be on tour. She's been nothing less than a class act, in the American sense of the word, whether she's consoling children with cancer, laying flowers at memorials, greeting crowds on walkabouts, playing cricket or shooting the rapids.
Then there's future king George, nearly 9 months old and an undeniably adorable tot, whose official public debut as a royal was a crawlabout on the floor with a clutch of equally cute Kiwi tots and all their adoring mums, Kate included.
And this is what the republicans want to rid themselves of? It's hardly ancien régime (the old order).
Nevertheless, numerous senior Kiwi politicians, including Prime Minister John Key, have said it is "inevitable" that New Zealand will dump the monarchy, probably after Queen Elizabeth II dies and her son (William's father) becomes King Charles III. Becoming a republic would mean the British sovereign will no longer be the head of state, but New Zealand would remain in the Commonweath. .
Naturally, this didn't come up when Key met the Cambridges last week, because even fervent republicans concluded it's bad form to talk about throwing out the royals when the royals are on your soil. . In Australia, where repeated referendums on the issue have failed and Prime Minister Tony Abbott favors continuation of the status quo, recent polls show support for a republic has fallen to its lowest level in years.
Then there's Scotland, which is voting in September on whether to leave Great Britain, breaking up a 300-year-old union while still retaining the monarchy and joining the Commonwealth as an independent nation (like Canada or Australia). Once considered unthinkable, recent polls show that support for a yes vote is gaining.
Still, America's oldest and closest ally broken into weaker bits? Not a good thing, even if no one official in Washington is saying so out loud.
Which brings us back to the young royals. Officially, they are not supposed to take sides or even talk about politics. But they don't have to. They just have to show up.
Modern monarchy is no longer about having power and wielding it, and it's more than just titles and tiaras. Even the least-charming members of the royal family are emotion-tugging symbols, the embodiment of continuity, history and shared cultures tying diverse peoples together in a way no president or prime minister ever could.
Kiwis and Aussies, and even Scots, might think twice about turning their backs on that.
Puente is USA TODAY's royal watcher.
Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com
Read the original story: Voices: Royals leave republicans in the dust Down Under