Final Word from Thursday, January 10, 2013

Even if the public accepts Petr Nečas's cop-out that it is a "constitutional custom" and therefore a necessity for the PM to sign a presidential amnesty, he must still convince the people that it is also a necessity for him to sign a presidential act of remission (or abolition) at the same time. At the very least, Petr Nečas could have demanded that Václav Klaus separate the act of amnesty from the act of remission halting the prosecution of major alleged economic crimes that have lasted longer than eight years. By arguing in effect that he was also required to sign the act of remission, Nečas has given Klaus carte blanche to halt other criminal prosecutions of lesser duration as his swan song. For example, if Klaus wanted to grant remission to Roman Janoušek, Nečas would have no leg to stand on for refusing it. He would have to co-sign it, and in doing so he would also take full responsibility for the act.[Czech Republic prime minister pardon]

Glossary of difficult words

cop-out - an instance of avoiding commitment or responsibility;

remission/abolition - the legal term for ending the prosecution of a case or halting a prosecution before it begins;

carte blanche - complete freedom to act as one wishes or thinks best;

swan song - a person's final public performance or professional activity before retirement;

not to have a leg to stand on - to have no facts or sound reasons to support one's argument or to justify one's actions.


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