Beautiful men and their beautiful offices
I’ve no lesson to give in this post, only an observation of some similarities between two men, one American, the other French. Political creatures, good looking, very good looking, young, very young, presumed to be gay but never out, both having reached high levels in public life, both in trouble due to the cost of redecorating their offices. One is former congressman from Illinois Aaron Schock, the other is Mathieu Gallet, president of French public radio group Radio France.
Aaron Schock has had a striking career, fueled by intense ambition. He was the coverboy of Men’s Fitness. He is assumed to be a closeted gay man whose career has been one of consistent opposition to gay rights. Given the district he represents, he was perhaps wise to hide his orientation (if he’s gay) and remain in the closet. That closet, if it’s in his DC office, was likely very beautiful, given the fortune he spent redecorating it in a Downton Abbey style. News of this renovation opened a can of worms for Schock, with all sorts of investigations into his spending, including an FBI investigation that is apparently underway. Among the items noted was the use of public funds to finance trips with his official personal photographer who some say is Schock’s lover. Given these stories, Schock has prefered to resign.
Another hottie, another office another scanal. Mathieu Gallet was the deputy chief of staff of Frédéric Mitterrand (the nephew of François), minister of culture in a right-wing government. (I note that Gallet was already on the staff of Mitterand’s predecessor, but Mitterrand did give him a significant promotion.) Some describe Gallet as Mitterrand’s lover. In any case, Mitterran made a surprise nomination of Gallet as head of INA, the national television and radio archives. This was strongly criticized due to Gallet’s lack of experience in managing a business, and because of laws against revolving doors for politicians and civil servants who move straight from regulating entities to managing them.
In 2014, Gallet was named had of Radio France, whose headquarters were in the midst of a major renovation. This week’s issue of satirical/investigative newspaper Le Canard enchaîné wrote that the renovationof Gallet’s office would cost over 100,000 euros, at a time when Gallet is carrying out substantial layoffs in the group (up to 400 jobs are at risk and a strike opposing this plan currently underway). And after the office, we have learned that Gallet purchased a new luxury car as his official vehicle, despite the existence of a perfectly serviceable 2010 model, and that despite there already being three drivers on staff, Gallet insisted on bringing with him his driver from INA.
Perhaps the best sign that a public figure is gay, is an immoderate taste for luxury decoration of his office?