ABCNews asked Smith why the Royal Family is not relevant today: "the monarchy is dysfunctional and undemocratic. In Britain it is the centre of our constitution and the source of what it wrong with our constitution."
Smith's main gripe is the power that the monarchy gives to the Prime Minister: "It creates King Gordon, rather than Queen Elizabeth. The Prime Minister loves this power: no constitution is needed; sovereignty comes from the top, not from the people. Whereas, in America power comes from the people: the U.S. government can only do what the people want them to do, but in this country the government, can do anything they want."
The permanence of the British Royal family may be due to their awareness of the need to modernize.
During ten years as BBC Royal Correspondent, Nicholas Witchell has found the Queen to be "very aware of the need to move with the times, but at a pace she feels comfortable with." The aftermath of Princess Diana's death in 1997 was a critical time for Her Majesty because it became clear that the nation saw the Royal Family as austere, cold and out-of-touch. There was a realization in Buckingham palace that it needed to make itself less distant.
A clear sign that the Queen is accepting modernization can be seen in the Princes' girlfriends, Kate Middleton and recent ex Chelsy Davy: "Neither William's nor Harry's girlfriend, would have been deemed suitable 30 years ago," BBC Royal Correspondent, Nicholas Witchell, told ABCNews.
Yet, there is still an element of snobbery; last April when William split-up with Kate "there were lots of comments from so-called friends who used to say 'doors to manual' when Kate walked in and out of the room in a reference to her parents' former professions as cabin crew," Hughes told ABCNews.
As for Prince Harry's former girlfriend, 22 year-old Londoner, Natacha Tonissoo, remembers her from school: "Chelsy was great fun and so down-to-earth; she's not your typical English girl, not like Harry's standard crowd. " Tonissoo told ABCNews.
It is through their military careers that William and Harry have been able to experience true camaraderie and a sense of normality: there is no royalty on the frontline. The Princes have broken away from the family tradition of joining the navy; Harry now plans to further his military career by becoming a helicopter pilot with the Army Air Corps. On October 31st, the Prince was made an honorary Gurkha in recognition for his work as an officer in the Afghan Helmand Province. Captain Surya Gurung from the Royal Gurkha Rifles explained the significance of this honor: "They gave it to the Prince because of his support, friendship and work with us. For us it's not necessarily because he is a Prince, it was because he was so liked by the soldiers," Gurung told the Press Association.
The potential clash between the Princes' enjoying themselves as young men, and fulfilling the expectations of their roles, is most evident in the criticism that incurs when they come out of night clubs drunk.