He spends £10,000 a day on food and £200,000 a year on flowers; has 121 cars in his garage with insurance costs of £100,000 and fuel bills of £275,000 a year; flies around in an Airbus A330 on which he lavished a £215 million refit; thinks nothing of spending £80,000 on day trips; forks out £1000 a day on newspapers; and serves guests a 2006 Crozes-Hermitage house red worth £160 a bottle, reports Nick Wood in The Daily Mail 7 February, 2012
No, we are not talking about a Hollywood mogul, hedge fund boss, Russian oligarch, or some benighted banker observes Mr Wood. These are, he says, just some of the household bills for Nicolas Sarkozy, President of the Republic and tenant of the Elysee Palace in Paris.
Australian republicans refuse to say what form of republic they are proposing. Is this the model? We know the republicans were planning a new presidential palace in Canberra for their republic, so ostentatious spending was certainly on their agenda. In the nineties we warned that their Keating-Turnbull Republic Mark 1 would introduce the French fifth Republic into Australia. And one of the other models they admit they are considering could involve up to eighteen additional politicians. Imagine the superannuation, overseas travel, palatial offices etc.
" The annual bill for Sarkozy and his palace is around £100 million – roughly four times the cost of David Cameron and 10 Downing Street," Mr. Wood reports. “Very few people in Britain were aware of the Sarko's extravagances until The Sunday Times, drawing on a new book published by Socialist deputy Rene Dosiere, thought fit to publish them last weekend. But, more significantly, before M. Dosiere's revelations, few people in France knew the minutiae of their President's lavish tastes.
“The reason is simple enough. Unlike Britain, France has a privacy law and its media, fearful of big fines for upsetting the rich and powerful, are reluctant to pry too deeply into their lives.
Now Steven Erlanger writing in The New York Times 22 March 2012 notes how Mr. Sarkozy’s speech about the recent Toulouse killings is a reminder of the extraordinary powers of the French president, who is a kind of republican monarch.
And who is expected to act like one. This has all been to his great advantage in the election campaign.We have no idea what sort of republic – and what sort of president the republicans have in mind in their agitation for fundamental but unknown change.
Just as they would shred our flag without even indicating what substitute flag they would prefer.