Final Word from Thursday, March 28, 2013

It's a basic constitutional principle, prescribed in Art. 40, Par. 2, of the Czech Bill of Rights, that a person is innocent until proven guilty. From this standpoint, yesterday's Constitutional Court ruling means that Václav Klaus will always be innocent of committing treason as president. Yet Sen. Jiří Dienstbier continues to insist that we will never know if Klaus acted treasonously. While technically correct, he is again showing the same kind of disregard for constitutional principles that allowed him to file the treason complaint against Klaus in the first place. If, as Dienstbier claims, the impeachment of Klaus was nothing personal and was meant to protect the constitutional order and establish the bounds of what a president may do in office, his top priority should be to amend the Constitution in a way to make sure future presidents can't take the same liberties with it as Klaus. Otherwise, Dienstbier will prove that his action against Klaus was indeed personal (and aggrandizing) and had little to do with protecting the constitutional order.[Czech Republic ČSSD]

Glossary of difficult words

to prescribe - to state authoritatively or as a rule that something should be carried out;

to take liberties with - to treat something freely, without strict faithfulness to the facts or to an original;

aggrandizing - serving to enhance the reputation of someone beyond what is justified by the facts.

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