ALL RIGHT NOW

Prime Minister Perks

Which gig is better: Great Britain or Greece?

March 2023

Reading time min

Prime Minister Perks

When Rishi Sunak, MBA ’06, was selected prime minister of Great Britain in October, he succeeded Liz Truss, whose brief tenure the Economist famously compared to the shelf life of lettuce. Meanwhile, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, MA ’93, has been serving as prime minister of Greece since 2019, or approximately 133 times the lifespan of refrigerated romaine. We put the PMs’ perks head-to-head to see how they stacked up.

Work-from-home Digs

Sunak: 10 Downing Street

Mitsotakis: Maximos Mansion

Maximos Mansion

Winner: Mitsotakis. The name of the manse itself would convey power even if there weren’t a sculpture called Minotaur in the living room.

Watch “Dog”

Sunak: Larry the cat, the official chief mouser of 10 Downing Street, who has chased off a fox.

Mitsotakis: Peanut, an adopted stray dog, who once bit minister of state Akis Skertsos. 

Larry the Cat

Winner: Sunak. Larry performs above his pay grade.

Words to Live By

Sunak: The motto of the British monarch, widely applied to the country at large, is Dieu et mon droit (“God and my right”).

Mitsotakis: Greece’s national motto is Eleftheria i thanatos (“Freedom or death”).

The Greek Flag

Winner: Mitsotakis. Dear Great Britain, people think it’s weird to have your motto written in a foreign language. Trust us on this one.

Fringe Benefits

Sunak: Chequers Court, a 16th-century country house on 1,500 acres, with 10 bedrooms, an indoor pool in the Orangery, and a putting green.

Mitsotakis: Access to the Parliament staff riding coach (no horses, alas) and a lawmakers’ gym.

Chequers Court, a 16th-century country house

Winner: Sunak. Clearly.

Viral Moment

Sunak: Became the butt of #MildlyCurseRishiSunak jokes, in which Brits wished upon the PM a lifetime of such inconveniences as catching his sleeve on a door handle.

Mitsotakis: Bared half of his torso when he doffed his dress shirt for a COVID vaccine. The crowd went wild. 

illustration of a hashtag

Winner: Tie


Summer Batte, ’99, is the editor of Stanfordmag.org. Email her at summerm@stanford.edu.


Images from top left: 10 Downing Street/UK Government; European People’s Party/Creative Commons; Matti/Wikimedia Commons; Her Majesty’s Government; Yevhen Borysov/Getty Images; Cnbrb/Creative Commons; 4zevar/Getty Images

Trending Stories

  1. The Weather Man

    Environment/Sustainability

  2. 8 Tips for Forgiving Someone Who Hurt You

    Advice & Insights

  3. Should We Abolish the Electoral College?

    Law/Public Policy/Politics

  4. The Case Against Affirmative Action

    Law/Public Policy/Politics

  5. Bananas Are Berries?

    Science

You May Also Like

© Stanford University. Stanford, California 94305.