Yes, William Windsor and his wife are mong the world’s most highly paid beneficiaries.
So why is the whole world going nuts about two beneficiaries popping out a sprog?
UPDATE 2: Non-monarchist Robert Tracinski suggests we could do a lot worse than the House of Windsor…
One of the reasons I don't begrudge the House of Windsor any of their wealth or fame is that they didn't win it, historically, through brute conquest. Quite the opposite. The House of Windsor was chosen by the British and imported from Germany in the Glorious Revolution of 1689, and they were installed on the throne on the condition that they accept a new constitutional settlement in which the monarchy was largely subordinated to Parliament. Since then (despite that notable backslider George III), the House of Windsor has placidly presided over the cession of more and more power to elected officials, to the point where Elizabeth II has basically spent 60 years looking dignified and nodding while she rubber stamps the policies of a succession of mostly mediocre political hacks. It's a job that calls for endless patience and strict control of the facial muscles.
In short, the House of Windsor has set a sterling model of constitutional monarchy and has presided over the devolution of executive power to the people. This is one royal family that advocates of republican government can love.
But that's not the main reason I don't begrudge the royals their fame—particularly this current generation of royals. The main reason is that William and Kate are just about the only global mega-celebrities who don't make me cringe.
There has been a lot of talk about how difficult it will be for the royal baby to grow up normally. But the empirical evidence indicates that the royals are doing a better job of being normal than the modern aristocracy of pop singers and Hollywood stars. They don't keep pet monkeys, get cartoonish plastic surgery, marry and divorce at rapid-fire pace, go off on bizarre drug-fueled rants, give their children bizarre self-indulgent names, or leak sex tapes on the Web.
In this reality TV era when you can be famous for being famous, the royal couple are the only ones who do celebrity right: always look glamorous, act dignified, remember your manners, show your patriotism, and stay out of politics.
In short, if we're going to have celebrities—and we're always going to have celebrities—better the House of Windsor than the House of Kardashian.