When it comes to the much vaunted Anglo-American special relationship, it has long been accepted that over here we view the matter as far more special than over there.
Your average American may only give a TV thought for Old Blighty when some quaint and arcane custom, such as Gloucestershire’s cheese rolling, reinforces a nostalgic image of our strange rain sodden world.
However, give the east coast establishment a bit of constitutional history and that nostalgia becomes positively misty eyed.
Last week the American Bar Association decamped to London to hold its year 2000 annual meeting in the capital, and do what Americans do best over here and get nostalgic.
Litigation lawyers spent the week with British barristers arguing in full period costume over great issues in British history such as Henry VIII and divorce and Walter Raleigh and tobacco, before dealing with the pressing matter of the American War of Independence and the countries’ two 18th century Georges.
George Washington, first president of the United States and former British officer, was tried by UK barristers and defended by American lawyers for treason; while mad old George was hauled for trial for trespasses and restrictive trade practices.
What better half a dozen good men and women true to sit on a jury about a war over tax, than those impartial professional services experts at PricewaterhouseCoopers.
PwC forensic experts gave the thumbs down to George Washington, and impressed the court with such a reputation for fairness that they gained a mention in the next trial concerning taxes and tea.
When the King’s defence asked why the colonials should not pay taxes when those taxes would pay for their defence, the judge allegedly quipped: ‘PwC can advise you on that.’
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