Final Word from Friday, June 24, 2011

In a country where exemption from punishment is a perk of the rich and powerful,how is it possible that Vít Bárta will apparently be charged with bribery and mighteven be thrown in jail? Russian commentator Yulia Latynina uses her "lampposttheory" to explain such a paradox. If you're a big shot and you drive like a maniac,either literally or figuratively, you're bound at some point to run up against someoneeven bigger and more powerful. It's like hitting a lamppost when you're drunk. PPFsignaled that Bárta had missed the curve when its Euro magazine withdrew its protectionfrom him last week. By making an example of a big fish, Bárta's more-powerfuladversaries will be able to take the pressure off others of his kind for awhile,but they'll have to be careful not to drop him too hard. As Václav Láska noted on"Krásný ztráty," a person with nothing to lose is likely to spill the beans on others.

Glossary of difficult words

lamppost - a tall pole with a light at the top; a street light;

perk - (short for "perquisite") an advantage or benefit deriving from a job or position;

big shot - an important or influential person;

to miss the curve - to run off the road after failing to anticipate a shift in the direction of the road;

to spill the beans - to reveal secrets.


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