I’m looking for the English equivalent to the German expression: Wasch mich, aber mach mich nicht nass (Wash me, but don’t make me wet!).
It can be used and interpreted in various ways, but it is typically employed as a stand-alone derogatory comment to malign people who want the advantages of a situation (including holding the moral high ground) as long as they do not suffer any personal disadvantages. Below are four recent examples found on the websites of German newspapers. I have paraphrased them in English and anonymised them.
So, Frau X is a member of the Green party and campaigned for the closure of nuclear power stations. But last week she joined a demonstration to protest about the siting of a wind turbine in the field where she walks her dog. Wash me but don’t make me wet!
So, country Y is happy to benefit from EU funding but not prepared to abide by decisions democratically made by the EU parliament. Wash me but don’t make me wet!
So, Frau Q is a minister in the left-wing party that campaigns for comprehensive public education, but she has just registered her daughter at a private school. Wash me but don’t make me wet!
So, Herr Z is a member of the right-wing party that agitates against migrants, but he has employed a refugee to clean for him. Wash me but don’t make me wet!
There is a discussion of the expression on the Leo dictionary site at: https://dict.leo.org/forum/viewUnsolvedquery.php?idThread=672587
The suggestions there include "Make me an omelette, but don’t break any eggs!" and "Let me eat my cake and still have it". The best I can come up with is the single word:
Does anyone have any other suggestions?