And some like the houses with the rooftop spas

There’s something refreshing about a politician who’ll stand up and say “hell yes, I exploit my position for perks and I’m not ashamed to say it”. Which politician is this, taking a stand back in 1996:

_“Let’s grow up!” scolded _____’s leader, _____, lecturing his countrymen on what he called the facts of life in an unfair world.

Even his tailor and his shoemaker give him discounts, he said. Even the pharmaceutical company Johnson & Johnson hustled to provide an implant for his recent heart operation, eager for the publicity. “I am me,” […] “It’s not a level playing field.”

_____ was speaking in Parliament two weeks ago to defuse a crisis over his personal finances that no one here really wanted. Even opposition deputies were quick to say they saw no wrongdoing.

But a report in the foreign press that he and his son, _____, had accepted more than $700,000 in discounts for luxury condominiums touched a nerve.


Savvy JRE readers will probably be able to guess who I’m talking about. The June 5, 1996 edition of the New York Times has the answer.

(Obligatory disclaimer: the person in question donated $700,000 to charity after the discounts were discovered.)