The following articles on French President Nicolas Sarkosy was published Febuary 2012 in The Mirror (UK). The satirical news article and subsequent video were released by The Onion.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy’s $15,801 daily food and drinks bill French President's lavish lifestyle at the taxpayers’ expense has come under criticism and close scrutiny in France
If Nicolas Sarkozy ever invites you to dinner, wear your elasticated pants and leave the car at home.
The diminutive French President runs up a gigantic $15,801 (11,931€ or £10,000 ) daily food and drinks bill on entertaining guests.
Recent feasts at the Elysee Palace have boasted lobster carpaccio and calves cheeks with gnocchi, washed down with 1995 Pouilly-Fume white wine or 2006 Crozes-Hermitage red – at $253.00 (192.00 or £160) a bottle.
Sarkozy, 57, and his former supermodel wife Carla Bruni, 44, are active in choosing such extravagant refreshments.
But the couple might have to rethink their banquet menus of the future.
The President’s lavish lifestyle at the taxpayers’ expense has come under criticism and close scrutiny in France.
Mr Sarkozy’s total expenditure in 2011 was about £95million – including £200,000 on flowers. His fleet of 121 cars cost £275,000 a year to fuel, he has an expensive taste in clothes and wears a Rolex.
Last week he came under fire for allegedly misusing public funds. It was reported he sent a medical team on a state-owned Falcon 50 jet to Ukraine to check out his son Pierre, who had an upset stomach, and fly him back to Paris.
It cost £22,000, of which Mr Sarkozy is said to have refunded only £6,400. To appease the French people he did cancel an annual £500,000 garden party.
But Socialist MP Rene Dosiere said: “It seems the transparency announced by the president of the republic is far from being complete.”
And news from my Motherland...
Obama Criticized For Living In Lavish Mansion While Most Americans Struggle To Make Ends Meet 132-Room Estate Includes Personal Chef, 24-Hour Security Detail
WASHINGTON—Over the past three years, as the sluggish economy has forced many Americans to tighten their belts, President Obama has reportedly enjoyed a lavish personal lifestyle, residing with his family in a 132-room house staffed by a 24-hour security detail, five full-time chefs, and a live-in maid service.
In recent weeks, many of the president's critics have seized upon the issue, arguing that anyone who sleeps in a sprawling six-level neoclassical mansion covering 18 acres of Washington, D.C.'s most valuable real estate is clearly out of touch with the lives of ordinary citizens.
"What message does it send to the American people when their president is living in a ritzy palatial estate at the same time they're struggling to keep their heads above water?" political strategist Robert T. Carlson said Wednesday, noting that Obama's gated home features a lush rose garden, a private balcony, an ostentatious room seemingly devoted to the color blue, a solarium, "fancy portraits" of John F. Kennedy and George Washington, and a movie theater. "So much for all that 'shared sacrifice' he keeps talking about."
The various ways the president flaunts his lavish lifestyle.
"And just look at those gaudy columned porticoes," Carlson continued. "It must have cost a fortune to build that place."
Other commentators have noted that while Americans lucky enough to have jobs often spend hours in traffic commuting to work each day, Obama simply "walks on over to another wing of his huge mansion," where he keeps an opulently furnished home office replete with a large wooden desk, a fireplace, three giant windows, and a passage leading to his own private study and dining area.
"Each morning, as most office workers are squeezing into tiny cubicles, the president is kicking back in an 800-square-foot space with not one, but two separate couches," said pundit and blogger Chet Ogilvy, adding that Obama even employed a personal secretary to "handle the phones and basically everything else." "On top of that, he sits there like a king while a whole team of people brings him typed reports on everything important happening everywhere in the world."
"Can't this guy just pick up a paper like everybody else?" Ogilvy added. "Who does he think he is?"
Ogilvy also pointed out that on occasions when Obama does leave his luxurious home, he insists on being privately chauffeured around cities in large motorcades. In addition, sources confirmed the president has taken innumerable trips overseas in a private Boeing 747.
"No cramped flights in coach for Mr. President," Oglivy said. "When he wants to jet off to some exotic locale—and in the past three years alone he's traveled to Iraq once and Afghanistan twice—he has his own personal pilot ready to take him there. Meanwhile, the rest of us average joes are still standing in the security line waiting for our pat-down."
Many citizens across the country have also registered their disgust with what they perceive to be Obama's conspicuous lifestyle, claiming he often spends his work hours hobnobbing with other federal officials and even hosts cushy public events for visiting foreign dignitaries.
Others said they found it inappropriate that the president is living in "this big white house" at a time when home foreclosures in the United States are at a record high.
"Did you know he has Abraham Lincoln's bed right there in his own home?" Baltimore-area electrician Caleb Bell told reporters. "He keeps it in one of his guest rooms. Here I am, working 80 hours a week at two jobs, and this guy's got a whole house full of ridiculously ostentatious status symbols like that. In this economy, I think it's nothing short of obscene."
"And we're talking about the same person who has this enormous, presumably very expensive American flag flying from his roof at all times," Bell added. "I'm all for patriotism, but that's way over the top. Does he have to rub his extravagance in everybody's face like that?"
Responding to the criticism of Obama, presidential candidate Mitt Romney pledged his willingness, should he be elected, to stay in a small studio apartment in Arlington, VA.
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I am a 40-something year old American woman. Born in Texas, raised in Las Vegas!
Frenchified for Life
is a fabulous little lifestyle blog about truly embracing French life!
My intent is to simply inspire you to create something unique and beautiful in your everyday life. The French have this wonderful and annoying habit of seeing the world through rose colored glasses, might as well learn something from them!
That said, I lift my glass to you!
By the way, I mention the name Cachou (or The Cash) a lot, I'm referring to her...