Advice from the Queen: Your Accountant Shouldn’t Wear Furs

Usually on Sunday the former queen of France tells you about the mistakes she made so you won’t make them too. I say usually because lately she’s had some trouble making her deadline. See this as a virtual “Sunday” that travels with you throughout the week. If you find yourself in need of advice from the former Queen of France, please email whatwouldmarieantoinettedo at gmail dot com.

Marie,

A friend is always asking me for money, and usually I don’t think twice about helping, but we are talking about going on a trip together. I really feel like this will be a bad idea (for me) since I feel like I’ll be footing the bill for everything. She is pushing me to give her money for a deposit. What do you think? 

Miserlee

ImageDearheart,

I can relate. In my day, I had my share of friends with open palms, but also, remarkably, some ministers as well. I don’t have to tell you that it’s a bit of common sense that if your minister of finance lives as nicely as you do, and you’re the king of France, you probably should find another minister of finance. Monsieur de Calonne’s art collection included paintings by Rembrandt, Titian and Fragonard. His coach was lined with furs. At his legendary feasts, he needed to hire three people just to supervise the roasted meats.  Calonne meant well, but was not a thrifty man. He even released the state’s expenditures to the people, touting a surplus, leaving out the little detail about the 530 million-livre debt the crown had accrued since Louis XVI’s accession. The minister wanted to encourage creditors to think well of France and tried to spend his way out, supporting public works, and a new East India Company and other state expenditures. To reduce the deficit, the minister managed to increase the debt. By 1786, France owed 650 million livres. 

When people show you who they are, believe them. Don’t go on this trip and tie your finances to hers. Go on your own and travel first-class, four star. From what you’ve said, you’ll save money. 

What do you think? Did the Queen get it right? Give us your take in the comments. 

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