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McFeatters: We're just wild about Prince Harry

An arrangement of British daily newspapers photographed in

An arrangement of British daily newspapers photographed in London shows the front-page headlines and stories regarding nude pictures of Britain's Prince Harry. (Aug. 23, 2012) Photo Credit: Getty Images

Really, we Americans should kick in a little something to help support the British royal family since we get so much fun out of them.

There was good, clean fun like Kate Middleton's very stylish wedding to Prince William, who is next in line to the British throne after his father, Charles, if the ageless Queen Elizabeth II should ever die.

And then there is good, raunchy fun like Prince Harry's flying visit to Las Vegas, where in just over 72 hours he provided the U.S. and British press with at least a week's worth of material that has yet to run out. And there were nude photos to boot of Harry and a young lady holding a pool cue. Harry is holding what a smirking British tabloid referred to as "the crown jewels." A spokesman for the royal family said Harry was just "letting off steam." Apparently, he had picked up a considerable head of steam when he arrived in Las Vegas. There was a 3 a.m. race in the hotel pool against Olympian Ryan Lochte.

The next day there was a long liquid dinner followed by a visit to the Wynn hotel bar where Harry and his friends ran into a group of young women and invited them upstairs to continue the party.

Lochte, who doesn't appear to be any kind of a stick-in-the-mud, said he was "kinda happy he didn't invite me to the after-party." The photos of the ensuing fun appeared all over the world except, for the most part, the British press because the palace asked them not to publish the blurry cellphone photos. The press did helpfully direct readers to sites where they could see the photos.

Harry returned to Britain in anything but disgrace, although the inevitable chewing-out by the Queen, who must be weary of this kind of thing by now, couldn't have been pleasant.

The Sun newspaper referred to him as "Flash Harry," a reference to the libidinous, amoral and very funny rake in George MacDonald Fraser's Harry Flashman books.

Harry's security detail was asked why they didn't intervene in the revelry or at least prevent the cell photos, and their response was that they were there to protect his life, not run it for him.

The prince now returns to his day job as an army officer and Blackhawk pilot on standby to deploy to Afghanistan. Speaking for the American news media, when he gets back, doubtless filled with repressed steam, could you send him back over?

Dale McFeatters is a senior writer for the Scripps Howard News Service.